I notice Olympus and Panasonic are introducing some high-end lenses for their M4/3 cameras. Panasonic has a new 12-35mm f2.8 coming out for $1300, and Olympus announced a 75mm f1.8 for $900. (Wow, the new Nikon 85mm f1.8 is only $500!). Those add to other high-end lenses already in the lineup, like a Panasonic Leica 25mm f1.4, Olympus 45mm f1.8 and Panasonic 7-14mm wide angle.
They sell more affordable lenses too, but it's interesting to see them targeting higher-end photographers with those high performance lenses. It seems to show a different strategy from Nikon, where the assumption seems to be that the smaller the sensor, the lower the target market. Are the M4/3 companies right that just because someone wants a smaller camera, they don't necessarily want a cheaper camera with fewer features and lower performance?
I've been considering something smaller and lighter than a DSLR for casual use, and to me a camera like the Olympus OM-D looks more attractive than the Nikon 1 cameras, especially when you look at the lenses available for it. (You can get adapters for both systems to use your F-mount lenses.)
Should Nikon be offering higher-end alternatives for their C-mount cameras, or are the M4/3 makers aiming too high, at a market that might be too thin?
#1. "RE: M4/3 Lenses" | In response to Reply # 0walkerr Nikonian since 05th May 2002Wed 06-Jun-12 07:12 PM
I'm not certain that at this point we can say who is right and who is wrong. Cameras like the M4/3 systems, NEX's, etc. appeal to a slightly different need than the Nikon 1. If I still had young children and was doing a lot of action work, I'd probably find the Nikon 1 system more interesting. As it is right now, it's not appealing to me, but I like and use M4/3 and a Sony NEX-7 systems. For me, the best situation would be a hybrid of M4/3 and the NEX: the slightly greater sensor size of the NEX series, coupled with the more expansive lens selection of the M4/3 cameras. Adapters aren't terribly interesting to me (I've tried them) because they're just too darned slow to use most of the time.
As for prices, sometimes it's important to have a high-end camera or lens, even if you don't sell a large number of them. It sends a signal to buyers that you're committed to the system and that it's a serious one. It's a bit like the old Nikkor 6mm fisheyes or the 300mm 2.0. Very few were sold, but they made an impression on buyers: this was a system that could take you as far as you cared to go. Nikon lacked that for a while with their DSLRs and AF lenses, and it hurt them WRT to Canon. Now that they have them, they're doing well. A good way to sell a D3200 is for the buyer to know they can migrate to a D800 or D4 at some point in the future and not be stuck. Companies like Pentax lack that benefit and don't do nearly as well in the marketplace, even though their entry-level and mid-range cameras are good.
#2. "RE: M4/3 Lenses" | In response to Reply # 1Floridian Nikonian since 11th Feb 2007Wed 06-Jun-12 08:00 PM
Thanks for the comments, Rick. I don't want to hijack my own thread, but...
>As for prices, sometimes it's important to have a high-end
>camera or lens, even if you don't sell a large number of them.
> It sends a signal to buyers that you're committed to the
>system and that it's a serious one...
Would that also apply to DX? I know there's been a lot of discussion here on Nikonians about the mythical D400 as a high-end DX camera, to reaffirm DX as a serious system.
>...A good way to sell a D3200 is for the buyer to know they can
>migrate to a D800 or D4 at some point in the future and not be
This doesn't hold up for a DX user like me. I'm stuck. I own 11 lenses, and 7 of them are DX lenses, so moving up to a D800 or D4 for me would mean getting a whole new system. If I wanted to move to an FX camera, I might as well look at a 5D as a D800.
I'm agreeing with you, Rick, and your point is well-taken. It argues for a D400, as I see it, and also suggests the M4/3 people have a good strategy. I'm very interested in the M4/3 systems, but I confess not so interested that I've bought into it at this point. That's where my question comes from.