back to article Nokia: digital SLRs are doomed

One of the web's "25 most influential people" says that camera phones will soon make digital SLRs obsolete. "There will be no need to carry around those heavy lenses," Nokia's marketing EVP Anssi Vanjoki told a gathering in Helsinki, according to Reuters. Citing continuing improvements in cameraphone technology, Vanjoki said …

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  1. No, I will not fix your computer

    Before his time

    My SE W810i phone does holiday snaps good enough for arsebook, but there is no phone camera (or compact) that can get anywhere near my 7D (10-22mm, 24-105mm F4L, 70-210 F2.8L, 400mm F2.8L, x1.4, x2).

    BUT... the best phone cameras can be better quality than the first consumer digital cameras AND a good compact (like my TZ5) can produce better pics than the first DSLRs

    The point is that IF the technology in mobile phones ever does match todays DSLRs (unlikely but debatable) then the DSLR will have moved on, my DSLR can produce broadcast/film quality Full HD video today.

    It's really important to note that digital is still trying to catch up (in quality terms) with anlogue, I could get a old bronica/mamiya medium format camera, some low ISO film for a few quid but you'd be paying four figures for an DSLR that could touch it for quality (and ability to blow the picture up), digital wins hands down for convienience, and one day soon when we have 50mp full frame sensors as the default the quality will be better, but not yet.

    Oh, and one word for those who know... "bokeh" (nuff said)

  2. Paul 131
    FAIL

    why?

    Print this wishi washi bullshit!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Anssi Vanjoki's crystal ball

    Has Anssi Vanjoki ever got any predictions right? None that I remember. I'm astonished he still has a job at Nokia.

  4. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Hahah

    This Nokia guy doesn't know what he's talking about.

    Image sensor sizes will need to increase dramatically to produce the levels of noise that SLR users find acceptable.

    Nokia will have to implement 45 point autofocus, selectable focus points.

    People like the large lenses, they provide nice big tactile focus rings and zoom rings.

    Large lenses have lens hoods, soft focus filters, polarising filters etc..

    How are Nokia going to implement tilt shift lenses which are extremely good for taking photos of buildings without the inevitable perspective distortion.

    Many people like through the lens viewfinders. They also allow you to check depth of field by pressing the depth of field preview button.

    Camera phones triggering and syncing with pro flash guns? yeah right!

    Strobe flash for capturing motion? I don't think so.

    The list is endless. SLRs and mid format will never be replaced with a camera phone. You would look like an idiot if you pulled out a camera phone in a photo studio.

    Look at video cameras used by news teams, they're still massive even though you can shoot HD with a small handheld video camera these days. There's a good reason for this!

  5. Doug Glass
    Go

    Oh Yeah

    This is happening just like all the film cameras have totally disappeared. Simple marketing hype to make their pitiful product seem better.

    This dork is an idiot.

  6. Glesga Snapper
    WTF?

    Stop it...

    my sides are hurting!

    Seriously, I have only just stopped laughing enough to post this message.

    Someone tell this fool he's 21 days too late.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    I'm Photographer who dose not work for Nokia any more

    I guess if the top guys at Nokia knew their $#!+ the company wouldn't be in the spiral it is in right now.

    I use a Nikon D700 and I take my photography seriously enough to walk around world cities with over 10Kg of lens on my back. if camera phones had any hope I would have made do with a half way solution that would have at lest had me hoist lighter lens.

    Ansi; go home chop some fire wood and enjoy the Finish winter and make space for people who understand the business to run it.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yeah, real likely

    I expect to see professional wedding photographers, landscape artists and the sports photographers you see on the sidelines with $6000 lenses to scrap their equipment and replace them with a camera with a 6mm lens any day now.

    Maybe Nokia could put their money where their mouth is; next time Nokia puts together artwork for marketing, ad, brochure, whatever, please take all the photographs with a camera phone. I think you'll quickly find out that camera phones have incredible limitations.

    Even all this leaves out the incredible creative versatility of the SLR. I've used my SLR totally without anything people would recognize as a lens. Pinholes, handmade bellows, etc. And the ability to use 3rd party specialty lenses for artistic and scientific work is one place where SLRs are absolutely irreplaceable.

  9. John Ridley 1

    Meanwhile, Nokia engineers...

    ...are reading what this guy said, facepalming, shaking their heads and saying "oh, Christ, what a moron. I bet he's going to want us to do this now." I've worked for companies where the officers and sales people will talk sunshine out of their ass and sell absolutely anything totally without regard to whether it's even physically possible or not. I'm sure the engineers at Nokia are thinking the same thing right now.

  10. Dave 13
    Go

    DSLRs are much more than sensor

    It's not a replacement, but a merger. I think you'll see DSLR cameras at the upper end (Canon/Nikon, etc) begin to have more communications and computing functions in the near future. Today's DSLRs are *much* more than just a sensor with some glass in front. I'll admit that mobile phone cameras have come a long way, but would you film your daughters wedding with one?

    To see what someone who knows what he's talking about is thinking, look at Thom Hogan's site: http://www.bythom.com

  11. Alan Plastow

    Half-a%$#$ photos R us!

    You are probably correct in a rather "not so aware" manner - but you are also missing the point. That point is a potential image quality that reaches WAY beyond an 11-year old with a camera phone in the thirty-seventh row of the rock concert.

    Single Lens Reflex cameras are designed to create - camera phones are designed to entertain. There is an enormous difference. A competent photographer (sometimes, even incompetent ones) can "craft an image" with a SLR - modifying depth of field, degree of perspective, even "bending the light" to create something incredible.

    Camera phones, on the other hand, are designed to take purty pikiturs in a reactive manner - most of which are almost immediately disposed of. In our ever-more shallow society where quick, purty, sloppy and disposable are rapidly overcoming "craft" in nearly every endeavor, camera phones are a perfect mediocre fit.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    All those comments...

    Hmm.

    Perhaps the point he was trying to make is that he expects camera phone pictures to become as good as the CURRENT generation of DSLR. Now, the lens issue is a tough one, but image post processing can help greatly here, and that just a matter of processor speed and good algorithms. Take a look at some of these from the latest Nokia phone

    http://conversations.nokia.com/2010/04/27/first-12-megapixel-sample-photos-shot-on-nokia-n8-untouched/

    I sure many will agree that those pictures are easily good enough for most peoples usage. And that is with current tech. They can only get better. But never as good as the DSLR's from the same ERA. Well, perhaps not.

    I would take issue with the last line on the article also - HD video on the current generation phones is 720P 30fps (Instint Dash 2 is best of these). It will be 1080P at 30 fps soon given rate of tech change, the next generation after taht 1080P 60fps etc etc. The era of block camera phone video is over. Even the 720P stuff is very impressive, and again, it can only get better.

    As someone once said- Never say Never.

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