Does anyone want this also?

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by richard_golonka, Nov 21, 2018.

  1. A interchangeable lens DSLR with no screen. I talk about this subject on the blogs and everyone just says, don't look at it or turn it off like I am some special kind of idiot who never thought of that.

    No one understands.

    Not having a screen is entirely liberating and amazing. The only problem with film is that you have to pay to get it processed and deal with the logistical annoyance of doing the driving and/or making a dark room. That part sucks; digital wins this fight by a country mile. But the not knowing what you are shooting part is exciting and makes you think more about what you just did before you move on. It makes you think more about what you are going to do before you shoot so you have to think less about what you just did after you did it because you cant check it and you want to move onto the next thing as soon as possible after doing whatever it is you just did.

    I am new to photography (5y) and have done both equally for few years and I love shooting film now an order of magnitude more than digital for just this reason. I don't, however, need to make money with my photos, so I don't care if I miss the shot or if the technical image quality/resolution is not top tier. If I was a professional, my opinion would likely be different. But as a hobbyist, I find it much more enjoyable. I take less photos but enjoy it much more

    Most people here, I assume, have shot film for many years at one point. But if you were a film shooter during the digital transition it was the best thing since sliced bread so obviously, most will eventually be pushed that way. I was not, I had a choice with no prior background in either and I am now shooting film despite the hassle almost exclusively...although only at a rate of about 30 rolls a year. Don't always have the time. Sometimes I go for a walk and spend 30min looking around and taking no pictures. Other days, I go through two rolls. Just depends. With a digital I always take too many and have my face buried in the options; this is perhaps a personality thing as much as a digital camera thing.

    70% of my rolls I have yet to develop, some have been sitting for 4 years now. I want to see them, but I find the process of walking around looking for potential photos much more enjoyable than actually reviewing them. Although, I know in order to get better at this I will need to review. For this reason, I am realizing that shutter/aperture imprinting on the film strip would be a very useful feature for me...but I digress.

    Can someone please just make a digital camera with no screen, it would even be cheaper to make but you could sell it for a bit more. I would buy it at 1.5 times the cost of the same camera with no screen, win-win for everyone. Well, maybe I lose. But I don't care.

    In addition, how about you give me the option to put it into "expedition" mode. Put a solar panel on the top to run a very very simple backup light meter and a film advance lever to prime a mechanical shutter. Both of these things would also provide enough charge for one shot and to save one default raw file. Aperture would be from the lens ring, with iso and shutter on the top dial (or lock the iso at 400). Make the most advanced all mechanical shutter ever constructed to ensure high enough mechanical shutter speed. In normal mode, it would function just like normal DSLR just without a screen.

    This is a digital camera that could take a picture 30 years from now if found in a basement with a memory card. Its always alive and ready to take a photo. Oh, you say digital camera batteries last for a few weeks if you conserve? Ok, but the charging part is uber annoying though (uber is a term early millennial hipsters use, FYI). I would like to just leave it in my car forever and know that if I needed to take one shot, wind once, and go. We would be best friends forever, that camera and I. Its all about the experience.

    There was a company once who prioritized user experience over specs but I forget the name (oh yes, it was Apple).

    Ok, I cant have it all. That last requirement is a bit advanced I know, I let that go. If I knew more about electronics I would make my own version of this DSLmonsterR. But how about we just ditch the screen Nikon/Pentax/Canon and give it a go? Make it affordable because well, you are removing functions.

    As I was complaining about this the past few years while being called delusional but almost everyone I pitched it to, Leica came out with two rangefinders exactly like this. Except they are multiple multiple thousands of dollars and everyone thinks its amazing. Sigh. Life is hard.

    I feel I may never get what I want at a price I can afford. Is this philosophy? Did I do it right?

    Would anyone else buy this camera other than me?
     
    robert_bowring likes this.
  2. Oh, you tell us interesting things.
    Nikon could do this but they did not. They were not brave/bold enough to push a ripped version of Df on the market. Thin body, without the display, all-titanium boby, 1/8000, even a split-image and an arrow would be OK with MF only. If they still make MF lenses, why not?
    BUT: they can count their profits and they don't believe it would be a market success.
    You can write to engineering departments of companies with your ideas.
    There are examples in the world when peculiar products of very obsolete products were and are in demand. Voigtlander lenses, mechanical manual-wound watches, fountain pens are still being produced now etc....
    BUT there are even more examples when those ideas collapse (New but discontinued VW Beetle come to mind).
    Leica can afford to make them.
     
  3. Ohhhh my

    This is what is called a real issue. The idea that we move around in our environment and once in a while find a situation( actually we want to explore and find these situations) we want to capture to convey a message/meaning/feeling.... and then move on with out the technology getting in the way.... Whether the capturing is for us personally or for sharing is also not needed to be stated. Is it something subliminal or artistic, a political statement or just a personal feeling at that exact moment and it is the involvement primal/secondary to the capturing.

    And as you state sometimes the capturing is primal and then the captured moment becomes secondary to even developing the end image....

    Well what is it we are doing?

    Myself I find often just need the excuse for going out to find something very beautiful or exciting to look at and the act of going through to find the best angle best lighting and framing is important and draws me to taking a picture not for the picture but the exercise of finding/seeing it in its best 'light" that is important. This make the subject even more personal and I feel myself even more drawn to the object with a feeling or better understanding and attachment. I have taken many hundred images and then not looked at them for weeks because I am afraid I did not capture what I saw.

    It is not the camera but the process that is important and in the rare chance for me and my limited photo capabilities that I do capture the 'moment" I am pushed forward to find the next instance.

    I came from the film only era and for 10s of years worked with it relying on outside labs for proper processing. The digital age has freed us from that error prone issue/consistency and I find the digital domain much happier. In the last few years the cameras are much more accurate at reflecting what I see before I click the shutter and with minimal processing. this alone , minimal processing, makes it far more enjoyable. I want to point/shoot and see what I saw!

    Looking at the image on the camera , impossible, too small, too limited for color scale... too limited. I rarely look except to make sure the framing is good and the main area is not truncated. Then move on to the next visual stimulus!

    So fast so moving forward. So exciting ....

    The barebones camera. Just ignore the back. Camera companies sell to the market. most people are not interested in the art. They buy technology (gadgets) .

    Trust me I am a "Technology Manager".

    Lets go find something to take a picture of.....
     
    Hector Javkin likes this.
  4. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    Every digital I have allows one to shut off the screen / monitor which I have done. Except for the first shot to check exposure or another if the light has changed, I rarely peek. Except when travelling, the first view is on the computer monitor. Look or not - a matter of choice.
     
    carbon_dragon likes this.
  5. I shot film for many years but mostly took pics on vacation. Didn’t get serious about photography until I got my first digital camera as a gift. While I understand your seeing the rear-of-the-camera screen as a burden, I hope you understand my seeing past attachments to film processes, methods, and gear as a burden I don’t share.

    I’ve played piano since I was a kid. When I played my first electric keyboard after years of playing a traditional keyboard I was almost paralyzed by comparing how the electric felt and sounded compared to the gold standard of the Steinway I grew up on. I quickly unburdened myself of those comparisons as I realized playing an electric keyboard utilized many of the same skills but was an entirely different animal.

    I’m no more “dependent” on the rear screen of my camera than I am on any other feature. I use features available as needed in as organic a way to my needs and desires as possible.

    One friend of mine who has a bad hip had to give up driving a clutch and has had his automatic transmission now for about 3 years. He still complains regularly about missing the clutch. His tie to the past seems more the burden he bears than anything about his newer model vehicle.
     
    mikemorrell likes this.
  6. Frankly..... yes. It is.
    Yet, I recognise it partially anyway for making too much shots. Digital does remove this sense of cost per shot, making experimenting easy. In my view, feeling free to experiment is a great asset and a good stimulus to more creative attempts, out of the box ideas etc.Certainly for the learning curve - once you're more lucid about the images you want, it's of lesser importance.
    Being buried in the options.... that's something to get over. Read the manual, configure things the way you feel best, and then leave it all alone. Playing too much with options (many of them obscure and with limited effect on what you were actually doing) distracts from making photos more often than not. And seriously, how much is there to change shot to shot? You want a less technological camera, but it's not the camera insisting that you look at its techno bells and whistles that much.

    At the same time, shooting film, with cost for each shot, and more effort (developing and printing or scanning is certainly slower), is also a great asset and a stimulus for more thoughtful, considered shooting, with only the core controls available on your camera. There is no reason why the discipline that comes from that would not carry over to digital. In fact, the more film I shoot, the more I notice I leave my digital camera settings alone (apart from of course ISO, aperture and speed), the less I need or want to review my images on camera and the less photos I generally shoot because there is just a fraction more thought before shooting. Which is nice, as it reduces the time wasted on culling and editing. Discipline sounds a heavy word, but it is what it is.

    So frankly, the solution here isn't a screenless digital camera. Fixing your own tendency to dive into options, menus and image reviews too much is a lot more effective, and a lot less likely to happen than any of the high volume camera makers making a digital camera with no screen. If the niche market for that was large enough, they would have already. Plus, there is a lot more satisfaction in overcoming your own battles than there is in a technological fix.
    And probably being a bit less occupied with camera options and more occupied with just making the image work will not do any damage to your photography either.
     
  7. Besides the M10D, I think there is another Leica D camera with no screen. Don’t see the draw myself, but if that’s what you want, you just need to pay $8K (plus the lens of course). Or you can buy any film camera. None have screens! Plus as sophisticated as modern digitals are, you pretty much NEED the screen to just set the options within the camera. We used to do that with LCD (tiny) screens and button press combinations (it was a PITA). Note also that the Leica M10D uses an IPhone to set its options! Is that really better?

    Anyway, just listen to Sandy and turn the screen off if you don’t want it to show you what you’re shooting. That way you can find out the meter totally misestimated the exposure due to the sun being in your frame when you get home instead of on site when you could have done something about it. Viva Adventure!

    Also, digital cameras require spare parts to repair (where old mechanical cameras can make some parts). No-one can really manufacture replacement circuit boards for my Contax RTS cameras and so 2 of 4 of those are permanently dead. On the other hand my 2 Leica M2s from the 1950s are both working great and I can get them fixed today from a variety of good servicers.

    It sounds like you REALLY want to shoot film, which is fine. Just shoot black and white and develop it yourself. Buy it in bulk rolls and you can wind as many frames on to the rolls as you want. It’s cheap and easy. You will just need a scanner (which is admittedly harder and more expensive, but not as expensive as a $1000-2000+ digital camera). Try that for a while, get home and find out that great shot you took was NOT in fact well exposed and you will find a new appreciation for chimping!

    And there are an awful LOT of pre-digital film cameras which are bargain priced — cameras I could never afford to buy which you can find for peanuts today. Now there is adventure on a budget.
     
  8. I don't think, Richard is looking for tips to 'cure' him of his habits. If he did, I would have some useful tips. According to the OP title, he is asking whether others have also felt the way he has. To be honest, I think its a drain on my brain if I have to worry about settings all the time while shooting, or be itching to check the display every time I take a shot, because my attention will get divided between finding subjects/composing and fiddling with camera settings. The bottomline is, I try to avoid doing that. I shoot RAW and that way, the only three settings that matter are aperture, shutter speed and ISO. The last one can be left at auto (mostly), and since I hate to dig into menus to change shutter speed or aperture (I dislike the Sony Nex-3 just for that), I choose cameras with manual knobs to adjust these. The other setting I use sometimes is exposure compensation, but I used that in film cameras too. I worry about the other delicate adjustment, white balance during post processing. Thats one advantage of shooting RAW (among many others), less settings to go wrong during shooting.

    I wouldn't avoid cameras with advanced settings, but my own criteria for selecting a practical camera is, how easily the basic settings of shutter speed, aperture and ISO are accessible. If these settings are easily accessible, then I can choose to ignore the rest, at least initially. However, its good to keep an open mind about specialized features. For instance, my camera has a multiple exposure feature and I have obtained good results by experimenting with it.

    I do review images in the display while shooting fast moving objects or hand holding the camera under low light to determine whether I should retake, but other than that I shouldn't have to, if the training and practice are adequate. I guess thats applicable to many others too.

    I have enjoyed shooting single use disposable cameras where I couldn't control anything in-camera, just avoid strong highlights or low lighting etc, and click. Thats a good experience, but I wouldn't necessarily want it all the time, because unlike Richard, I value my end results tremendously, much more than the camera or the shooting experience itself.

    (Time for some unwanted advice) BTW, if you are fiddling with camera settings all the time, then you don't know your camera well or are uncomfortable with it. Either change the camera or get familiarized with the operation. Changing the settings should be burned into your instincts, like not having to decide which is the brake and which one the accelerator during driving. If things don't come that natural, then slow down and give yourself time to get familiar with the camera. If it still doesn't work, its probably time to change your gear. Thats just my own opinion.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2018
  9. I have in the past set up my Pentax k10d this way. It was fine in the end. And then I just go about my business, I know, it's very possible. But it's still there. Not having it accessible at all changes the perspective on what kind of tool you are actually using, and what are you using it for. Picking up the camera I described would be a very different shooting experience than getting the settings right and turning off the screen, even though at each click things would be essentially the same. Pick up a k1000 and spend 1 hour taking a maximum of 24 photos and they wait 2 weeks to see what happened. This is a completely different hour. I also find the waiting period very helpful for not falling in love with the picture I just took. I can be very objective months/years later.

    With a digital, I would eventually get everything right and it would be fine, I know. But I honestly don't want that control all the time. I want to light meter to have a bit of error and surprise me sometimes. I want to try to figure out how the camera takes photos and then work within those very limited barriers to produce something great. Note that this is very different than being able to set up everything about it so it does exactly what I want. I don't want it to let me do anything I want....I want to be forced to learn how to do best, what it wants.


    So perhaps I should ask again. Would anyone else buy this camera? I will lay out some things I am thinking. This is an "ish" vision.
    -Its a full frame digital camera with a 30+mp sensor. Or maybe its a foveon sensor. (honestly, this would make sense, why not go all the way weird)
    -Not mirrorless. Has a mirror and a split image focusing screen
    -It comes in the most weather sealed body ever made because there are minimal buttons or openings.
    -No lcd screen.
    -Interchangeable lens with available weather sealed lenses in whatever standard mount
    -It has a solar panel on top and the sides to power a simple simple light meter + some other things when the battery runs out.
    -There is no auto-exposure at all, but it will tell you in the viewfinder if you are over/under exposed.
    -Real dials of course for shutter, iso
    -There is no annoying battery pack. Plug the camera in. It can be a bigger camera to house a bigger battery, don't care. If it dies, you have to plug your camera in again. Seems simple enough, no?
    -There is no memory card, internal memory for as many photos as you could ever need.
    -There is one external connection. Plug it into the computer. Drag and drop your images, update firmware, charge battery.
    -Does autofocus when charged if you want, manual focus only after the battery runs out.
    -There is a small switch on the back to change from jpeg to raw, not both. You much choose
    -There is a switch for black and white or color, you must choose. If jpeg, you are stuck in black and white. If raw, it will show up in black in white by default first so you dont forget what your purpose was when you shot that photo.
    -Jpegs are processed for "feel", higher contrast and warm colors in some pleasing looking way. If you want detail and post editing, shoot raw.
    -Maybe we could add a Jpeg wheel with a few different default settings.
    -If the battery runs out the light meter will still work. But the camera will go into 'expedition mode' and function differently until plugged in again and charged. No autofocus now. A film advance lever will prime the shutter and give create some resistance to also generate enough charge to save one photo. In this situation, the little solar panel will divert juice to the "save at least one photo" operation if needed. Engineers, figure this out.
    -Maybe kodak should contract this camera and load all of their film presents which you could add to jpeg wheel options 1-10 that you could set up when you plug it in. The digital camera that pushes people to try film.

    Will anyone ever actually need to use the camera without the battery? no. But you could. And that is the beauty of it. It's always alive. Many people buy things because of what they could do with it, but never do. THe ubiquitous jeep wrangler is a good example. Its legit a drive me anywhere in the world on something that looks sorta like a road, type of vehicle, which is why people buy it, but then they go to the grocery store for 10 years in it. It doesn't make sense, but yet people keep buying it.

    And to anyone that says this is a crazy idea, just remember, this is essentially a film camera. Have you seen the cost of a nikon f5 or canon eos 1v on ebay these days? Many many people still shoot film and love it. But it is annoying. Ask yourself what percentage shoot film now because of the film, and what percentage do it because of the process. This camera would be a film process with the ease of a digital output. I would buy it and probably never shoot film again. People new to film now do it because of the process, not the darkroom.

    This camera costs 700 USD. It looks simple and beautiful and classic (but not full on retro) and feels great in your hand and can be purchased in the lens mount of your choice. Would you buy it for fun?
     
  10. Actually, I recant re: memory cards. I have flip flopped on this one depending on the day as I plan my fictional cameras. I think this one needs memory cards. If you fill it up, put a new one as there is no way to delete photos . This way you can keep going indefinitely without plugging it in. But are still are somewhat forced to try and conserve, as you’ll need a computer to delete and reuse the card. It’s about consistency of concept.

    Thanks for reading this far into my brain dump!
     
  11. I would not. I’m doing work that fulfills me with the equipment I currently have. I like a good fiction in a photo more than in a camera! ;)
     
  12. Hi @richard_golonka, I think I perhaps understand and value the reasoning and sentiment behind your question. For me, it addresses multiple 'levels' including your personal subjective experience with - and the technology of - photography. I have very little experience or history (just snaps) with film. Like many others, I only took up photography as a hobby in the digital age. I fully appreciate that shooting film can be a very different experience that shooting digital. I deliberately avoid any comparison of experience, technology or results here :)

    All this has been said by others but IHMO I really think that it's an illusion to hope that a manufacturer would ever produce a DSLR that - by design - forces you to impose limits that you're otherwise completely free to impose on yourself. Use duck tape + superglue or a hammer if you can't discipline yourself any other way ;).

    No-one - other than yourself - tempts you to take more digital photos than you would on film. I'm just a bog-standard DLSR amateur. But the more I learn about photography, the less photos I'm tempted to take. With increasing knowledge and experience, I've found that I've become more sensitive and selective as to which photos are really worth taking. There are very practical reasons for limiting the amount of photos you take. In film photography, the limited number of exposures per film and and the processing costs were limiting factors. In the digital age, there are different but equally limiting factors, the main one being the time needed to review, compare, rate, post-process and publish photos. In this digital age, it's perhaps tempting to take lots of photos just because you can but each additional photo adds to your 'digital darkroom' workload (assessment, comparison, selection, rating, post-processing, publishing, etc.).

    AF: If you don't like the automatic focus capabilities of your lenses, just turn them off and focus manually. Or use the ducktape/hammer approach to achieve the same effect.

    On batteries/power: Various sustainable (mobile) energy solutions are being developed . DSLRs are not IMHO a special case.

    On DSLR screens: for me, the screen's only purpose is to occasionally use menus to djusting basic camera settings like image quality and to delete images that I've transferred to my PC. Whenever I'm out and about taking photos - even doing voluntary photo-shoots at events, the light meter in the viewfinder tells me all I need to know.

    Bottom line: I sympathize with your reasoning and feeling but I think your 'idealized solution' (technology) is neither feasible nor sustainable.

    Best wishes,

    Mike

    @richard_golonka, I think I perhaps do appreciate what you say and why. And I really do sympathize with your sentiments, experience and initiative in posting this.

    The only thing I can suggest is to look for viable alternatives. The only 2 that spring to mind are:
    - stick with film and digitize
    - focus -by choice or necessity (duck tape/hammer) - on what's important to you

    I think you're right that 'digital' is the future of photography. My expectation is that in time the digital sensitivity/resolution of the high-end Hasselblad cameras today will eventually find its way into consumer cameras. I assume that
     
  13. As an engeneer as my first university degree, I can say that there are some drawbacks and caveats in your design. The product must be techological/relatively simple to produce (to cost less), and it must be in high demand. You combine pure mechanical design and digital, (where will you place all those ballbearings and gears) internal memory is a very debatable trick. "No battery" is also a bad idea. Camera must be autonomous and use batteries. External source may break, may have flaws, the wire/plug may be damaged. Less contacts and less external plugs is better. You want to use it in very harsh conditions, high temperatures, humid air, harsh frost, don't you?
    Using 4 AA batteries is a good idea. My Pentax can use 4 AA batteries, so this is the real expedition mode.
    That camera can not cost 700 dollars. It would be twice as much as Nikon Df used to cost (the list price) when debuted. Around 5000 USD I guess.... For many reasons. And who needs it?
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2018
  14. BTW, I never look into my display when shooting, never chimp. :confused:
    Get a mint Nikon FM-3A or Olympus OM-3 and relish :rolleyes: With a top class 50 mm 1.2 lens your 700 USD might not be enough.
     
  15. I would not buy that camera. It would become a clunky, overly large and cumbersome camera with too many knobs and wheels (unlike what you imply in your post, there will actually be plenty if you go through your list), and too little ease of use (checking the setting of a wheel is not quick nor easy, or you end up with a very crowded viewfinder to display all info which also sucks).
    And you will not be able to build that camera for 700 dollars, let alone sell it at that price. Given its niche appeal, probably add a zero to its price to be anywhere near a realistic estimate. As above, abouit $5000 sounds a lot closer.

    If I'd want a camera like you describe... well, I actually already have several, they just take film instead. Which is fine with me, since I take photos to actually have results at the end, so I do develop my film.....Seriously, if you don't particularly care about the results you get, and want a camera that is unreliable enough to give a lot of potential serendipity, why bother with a decent viewfinder, manual control and things like raw? Why not go for a holga or similar, or a smartphone and shoot from the hip?
     
    Jochen likes this.
  16. I don't feel suffering from having a screen on my cameras but sometimes my images suffer from me making no proper use of it (especially when either manual flash or tricky lighting, over the early 80s style integral metering of my camera's little head, are involved). Take away from film days: If it isn't the image in the spectator's eye, it might have quite likely been be the poor "lab rat" (post) processing it, who had suffered(!) to get something out of the not that well exposed input.
    I semi understand the kick @richard_golonka is seeking but being out shooting DRFs & DSLRs instead of MILCs, I feel sufficiently capable to surpress my chimping urges. I am willing to subscribe to the theory that "deleting shots in the field is a stupid idea" for the reasons:
    • I might have not enough energy to power my crappy rear screens for the time weeding out shots might take.
    • Messing with a card's content increases the risk of card failure.
    • I am out to shoot and should have much more suitable editing and culling platforms at home.
    • Card space is dirt cheap!
    OTOH: I'd be willing to pick up a screenless 3rd Leica, if I get it cheap enough and have a chance to kind of tether it. I'd really feel better handing others a crappy & clueless smart device to browse my shots via WiFi than risking somebody to steal or drop a camera I can't easily afford.

    Upon the dream of "expedition mode": I am wary. - I am not an electronics engineer able to tell how much power is absolutely needed to be ready to write a 24MP RAW to flash memory for 3 minutes. <- I assume the generated energy must be used to put the camera into standby for a moderate amount of time, to give a "responsive" shooting experience. Adding the losses of the generator part and further ones in the power storage unit plus a wee bit of safety, to allow the storage unit (capacitor? - battery?) to age, I worry you'll end with something closer to "crossbow cocking" than "film winding" as a required movement and the mechanics to deal with so much power / momentum will most likely have a considerable weight.
    To drop a few figures: A CCD Leica battery is 6.7Wh and serves for either 3h or 300 frames (according to our @Ed_Ingold). Since we need 3 minutes that will be a1/60th of that battery, 0.112Wh output. Figure out how to generate them! - Thoughts on the way: Storage is lossy, so generate better 0.167Wh. generators and gears are lossy, so better prepare to invest 0.5Wh of work. - Sorry I have no clue how that might feel.

    There is a little chance that I am off. my personal experience with muscle generated electricity is limited. What I can tell: It takes a serious effort of a athletically bonny soldier type to work the pedal generator of a military 2 way radio unit.
    The only muscle generator powered units I am using are LED pocket lamps. They aren't overly bright but enough to provide basic orientation in the night and figure out where to place a next step. They require either permanent modest work or let's say a wile serious effort to provide maybe 2.5 times as long of light. What I have was inexpensive and is for that reason a bit noisy too. (Crunching plastic gears...)
    While I like my lamps for being fail safe, independent and reliable (the expedition BS...) I do confess that you'd get an amazing amount of light silently out of the same weight invested into battery powered LED lights.
    Did you ever drill holes? I used about 4 different crank powered hand drills and a couple of battery powered ones and dare to say the battery ones seem pretty convenient for serious work. - The hand operated ones have their merits and charm but some seem to weigh even more than their electric plastic counterparts.

    My conclusion on everything power related: If you want to live off grid: Fine, go ahead, invest, diversify your alternative power sources etc. But expect to a) invest a whole lot, to get less convenience than from paying for the usual mass produced power. b) Don't be surprised if you'll end having to sacrifice a lot of freedom to live with the limitations of home made energy. // Treating energy respectfully and making efforts to need less is surely a right thing to do.

    Do I see a real need for a human powered digital camera? No. - We are lazy. Whoever might end doing an off grid hiking / marching vacation is most likely better served packing either film or at least compact charged batteries instead of exercise gear, to generate the power for individual shots. Anybody else traveling a tad more conveniently, be it by canoe or on mule back, might have electric needs anyhow and should ponder solar cells somewhere on top of the mount or vehicle. - Absolutely the same for covered wagons buggies & yachts. The majority of traveling I can imagine would still involve combustion engine powered vehicles. For that reason my request / suggestion to inventors & dreamers:
    • Make an electrically and mechanically quick coupling camera bag with included chargers! The thing I have in mind is easily attached to and detached from something like a tank pack base plate or a sissy bar or something at the back of the car seat in front of you. - It should be a great camera bag to carry while exploring a destination and damn weatherproof on the road. I guess I'd even buy an additional counterpart with matching wall wart(s) to bolt under my domestic coat hanger.
    I am aware that not every combustion engine powered wheelset generates an abundance of electricity. #East German 6V motorcycle misery (due to NATO semi conductor embargo: They are built / planned to be operated only 20% with headlights on and deplete their batteries all the time, when ridden with lights on as demanded by recent law).
    Anyhow: I'd be confident that even my crummy Siamese scooter should be able to somehow charge / top up a camera battery under way. Bigger rides tend to come with much bigger generators most likely able to power one 5V2A USB charger per seat?
    I don't think that car ownership changes anything in the need for such a charger-bag holder. - To my limited understanding anything "car" is best understood as "just kind of a saddle bag", according to the camera theft protection it doesn't provide; so yeah, grab your bag whenever you get out to pay for gas (or don't complain about not being warned).
     
  17. I don#t entirely agree on the bold part. - While current digital Leicas' shutter wheels are crap, the ones of the old M2/3/4s were actually nice; one could sense the selected shutterspeed even in the dark. With 2 clicks per speed, no longer a distinguishable 1/60th / 1/125 things turned bad. - OTOH: I'd rather have aperture rings than Pentax' darn wheels, that don't even change the aperture, while I am chimping and feeling the urge...
    A lot of buttons and similar selectors can be nice but I#d want them to be like on a mechanical cassette deck where you see and feel what it should be doing right now. and yes that might make the camera a bit bigger.
     
  18. Real simple, not interested in a digital camera without a screen. I don't chimp a whole lot, but when I need to (like to check exposure or focus), its a useful tool to have. I have shot film for over 30 years and mostly digital for the last 15+ years. Just a suggestion to the OP, perhaps it's time to develop all those rolls of film you have been storing for the last 4 years.
     
  19. I have soo many comments. I obviously have a totally different perspective on what is a good camera that everyone else. The current camera market has captured people who like those cameras, its saturated, that is what they like. I am thinking about a different demographic, one that is not here on this blog.

    Also, I shoot lots of film. Because I do this, it spawned the idea for this hybrid concept camera.



    @The Shadow " like a good fiction in a photo more than in a camera!" - I am actually not sure what you meant here haha




    @mikemorrell "Use duck tape + superglue or a hammer if you can't discipline yourself any other way"
    It's not about discipline, its about the meaning of the product and how it was intended to be used. How something is designed in concept influences what it means to a person, and they will buy it even though it's technically the same as another thing presented with a different concept. Classic cars are a great example, some people buy a classic car even though it is no different than a minivan in how it's used. It drives and is less convenient. But yet, it means something different and has a different intended purpose. I feel in general, that many are thinking about his too technically and forgetting that you can create a market with a new product and commitment to a creative vision..or not. But one way to ensure it won't work is to make too many sacrifices.

    @mikemorrell Also, I love autofocus. I was only suggesting no autofocus in this camera after the battery died so it could run without out.

    @mikemorrell "On DSLR screens: for me, the screen's only purpose is to occasionally use menus to adjusting basic camera settings like image quality and to delete images"
    I know, exactly. Why do we need settings in the camera? All it does it capture a raw file. Get rid of settings. Shutter, aperture, iso maybe one or two others on the top plate. Let the experts who make the camera decide on the best default settings. Design the camera around a specific concept of how its intended to be used and stop making it for everyone. There are plenty of other cameras for that. Stick to it and be brave. Market disruption if you nail it. Nikon didnt do with with the Df, but we wanted them to. This is sorta the same thing. Do we really need all that stuff in the camera? Sure its fun, but why really. I dont need it. Maybe without some sort of bracketing thing I cant take that one photo, fine, but I will istead take a different one. The amount of things we could add are infinite, and once they are added it becomes almost impossible to argue for removal...results in cameras getting more expensive with things that we probably really didn't need....unless you are a professional who needs to compete.

    @mikemorrell "'idealized solution' (technology) is neither feasible nor sustainable."
    I know which is why I posted in the philosophy forum! :) I was more interested if anyone else would want to buy the camera for a reasonable cost if it was available and/or if it was technically possible to make.



    @ruslan "The product must be technologically/relatively simple to produce (to cost less), and it must be in high demand. "
    I know this wont be first. Although really, its just removal of functions and production line stuff. Nothing new will ever be cost effective immediately

    @ruslan ""No battery" is also a bad idea."
    Ok, keep the removable battery. not a deal breaker. Can we still make it?

    @ruslan "Get a mint Nikon FM-3A or Olympus OM-3 and relish :rolleyes: With a top class 50 mm 1.2 lens your 700 USD might not be enough."
    I have many film cameras already that I have been using for past 4-5 years. I have always wanted an OM-3 though!





    @Wouter Willemse "overly large and cumbersome camera with too many knobs and wheels (unlike what you imply in your post, there will actually be plenty if you go through your list), and too little ease of use (checking the setting of a wheel is not quick nor easy, or you end up with a very crowded viewfinder to display all info which also sucks). "
    I am not sure why people care so much about ergonomics be honest. I would rather have the real dials over any other option, and would gladly sacrifice...how it feels in my hand... if I had to choose one of the other? the viewfinder will have nothing in it expect shutter aperture and metered exposure. This is not designed to be a quick camera to replace a d800. You will know what your settings are because your dials on the top will show it. I mean 95% of the time when you are holding a camera you are looking at your camera and not through the viewfinder. I get that quick adjustments viewable in the viewfinder are necessary for some, but then this is not a camera for that person.

    @Wouter Willemse
    "Given its niche appeal, probably add a zero to its price to be anywhere near a realistic estimate. As above, abouit $5000 sounds a lot closer."
    I know. I was asking though if you would value it at 700USD and buy it for fun

    @Wouter Willemse "they just take film instead"
    I know, I have many. I hate scanning and the darkroom requires time that I do not always have. But I love walking around with a film camera and taking photos vs a digital. Hence my proposal.

    @Wouter Willemse "Seriously, if you don't particularly care about the results you get,"
    I care very much about the results I get, but I care about the artistic feeling of a photo more than anything else. Some photos will need to be sharp to achieve that, some don't have to be. It just depends. I am also aware that I am not the most amazing artist of all time and that sometimes great photos arise from happy accidents and other from intense planning. You can take a great photo with a holga, but I would never want all my photos to look like that. Somewhere in between. Photography is about light and shadow, Sometimes light meters can be too good in that it makes everything properly exposed but you miss a bit of the character you can get sometimes with an inconsistent meter.


    Essentially leica just made this camera in a rangefinder. Only thing I am actually asking for here is for Pentax or sigma probably is to replicate and strip down one of their DSLRs and make it run bare bones when the battery dies using some probably not too terribly complex engineering.


    Thanks for chiming in everyone
     

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