OT - Konica Minolta to stop making cameras

Discussion in 'General Fitness' started by Jhimmy, Jan 19, 2006.

  1. Jhimmy

    Jhimmy Guest

    I know this should really go to a Photo newsgroup, but I ain't subscribed to
    one. Just I feel it's sad to hear the folllowing:

    "Konica-Minolta today revealed it is to quit photography business after more
    than 103 years - with the loss of 3,700 jobs worldwide."

    My first real 35 mm was a Minolta which I used on the mountains for a few
    years until the Welsh wet weather soaked some of the electronics - never to
    work correctly again. I've probably got a few hundred slides and all seemed
    extremely good at exposure and sharpness that a ham fisted photographer like
    me snapped ;-)

    Oh well, the world marches on....

    Jhimmy
     
    Tags:


  2. druidh

    druidh Guest

    I bought a DiMAGE 7i as my first digital camera and I still think it's
    a supreb piece of kit. I've been tempted by a DSLR, and I was looking
    at the KM (I already have some Minolta lenses). Guess that's not a
    viable option now (although I guess the cost of the remaining stock
    might fall?)



    druidh
     
  3. druidh wrote:
    > I bought a DiMAGE 7i as my first digital camera and I still think it's
    > a supreb piece of kit. I've been tempted by a DSLR, and I was looking
    > at the KM (I already have some Minolta lenses). Guess that's not a
    > viable option now (although I guess the cost of the remaining stock
    > might fall?)


    I'm in a similar position in that I have some existing 35mm Minolta kit
    and I was on the verge of getting a Dynax 5D before this happened. I
    wouldn't say that it's not a viable option - once the kit has been
    bought, does it matter what the manufacturer does? Sony will be
    continuing with the same lens mount so there's no reason to believe
    that lens options will die out, and the risk of obsolescence is the
    same regardless of the vitality of the manufacturer (with the possible
    exception of firmware updates). I believe Sony will be taking on
    maintenance & support as well.

    As you say, there could well be a lot of discounted Minolta kit
    available before too long, which is pretty convenient.

    Colin
     
  4. The Reid

    The Reid Guest

    Following up to Colin MacDonald

    >I'm in a similar position in that I have some existing 35mm Minolta kit
    >and I was on the verge of getting a Dynax 5D before this happened. I
    >wouldn't say that it's not a viable option - once the kit has been
    >bought, does it matter what the manufacturer does?


    Someone on photo group was of the opinion that as Minolta were
    losing money as a respected maker, how will Sony fare with no
    experience or image in SLR?
    --
    Mike Reid
    Walk-eat-photos UK "http://www.fellwalk.co.uk" <-- you can email [email protected] this site
    Walk-eat-photos Spain "http://www.fell-walker.co.uk" <-- [email protected] all, it's a spamtrap
     
  5. The Reid wrote:
    > Following up to Colin MacDonald
    >
    > >I'm in a similar position in that I have some existing 35mm Minolta kit
    > >and I was on the verge of getting a Dynax 5D before this happened. I
    > >wouldn't say that it's not a viable option - once the kit has been
    > >bought, does it matter what the manufacturer does?

    >
    > Someone on photo group was of the opinion that as Minolta were
    > losing money as a respected maker, how will Sony fare with no
    > experience or image in SLR?


    That's the question that will determine the longevity or otherwise of
    the cameras & lens system. Both the KM DSLRs, the 5D and 7D, are
    essentially good pieces of kit, consistently ranking highly alongside
    the Canon & Nikon equivalents. I think the killer for Minolta was (a)
    they were very late to market with both cameras, and (b) they didn't
    manage to recover ground via marketing. Sony, on the other hand, are
    good at marketing. But some people wouldn't touch anything with Sony
    on it.

    The press release suggested that the first Sony DSLR should be around
    this summer. It will be interesting to see how much Sony proprietary
    tech it requires, e.g. will it only use Sony memory sticks, or Sony OEM
    lenses, flashes, etc? If so they may as well stop now.

    Colin
     
  6. Jhimmy wrote:

    > My first real 35 mm was a Minolta which I used on the mountains for a
    > few years until the Welsh wet weather soaked some of the electronics
    > - never to work correctly again.


    For the record, my very first SLR was a Minolta. Nice camera, but it let me
    down a few times, it conked out once in the snow and another couple of times
    in humid, drizzly weather. After a year I sold it and bought an Olympus OM3
    with a mechanical shutter. Never trusted electronic shutters since (which
    is why I'm so paranoid about digital cameras and rain).

    Paul
     
  7. Jhimmy

    Jhimmy Guest

    "Paul Saunders" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Jhimmy wrote:
    >
    >> My first real 35 mm was a Minolta which I used on the mountains for a
    >> few years until the Welsh wet weather soaked some of the electronics
    >> - never to work correctly again.

    >
    > For the record, my very first SLR was a Minolta. Nice camera, but it let
    > me down a few times, it conked out once in the snow and another couple of
    > times in humid, drizzly weather. After a year I sold it and bought an
    > Olympus OM3 with a mechanical shutter. Never trusted electronic shutters
    > since (which is why I'm so paranoid about digital cameras and rain).
    >
    > Paul
    >

    I never learned my lesson, I then bought a Ricoh XR-X (good bargain at the
    time) and that too went carput after a rain getting into it. For the
    record, I used good qualtity camera cases and had them in my rucksack during
    the rain.

    Jhimmy
     
  8. > how will Sony fare with no experience or image in SLR?

    Very well - they now have have the same (literally the same) 103 years of
    experience that K-M had, plus the image and marketing skills of Sony.
    DSLR's are becoming mass market now, so the timing is pretty good for Sony.

    They'll do well as long as they don't restrict customers to using memory
    sticks.
     
  9. Guig

    Guig Guest

    On Thu, 19 Jan 2006 21:48:08 GMT, "Jhimmy" <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >I know this should really go to a Photo newsgroup, but I ain't subscribed to
    >one. Just I feel it's sad to hear the folllowing:
    >
    >"Konica-Minolta today revealed it is to quit photography business after more
    >than 103 years - with the loss of 3,700 jobs worldwide."
    >
    >My first real 35 mm was a Minolta which I used on the mountains for a few
    >years until the Welsh wet weather soaked some of the electronics - never to
    >work correctly again. I've probably got a few hundred slides and all seemed
    >extremely good at exposure and sharpness that a ham fisted photographer like
    >me snapped ;-)
    >


    My first and still my current SLR is a Minolta 7000 which I bought
    shortly after they were launched.
    --
    "Always look behind you when you hear the closing of the door ... look
    hard and you will recognise ... I'm the Architect of War."

    Grace, Pulling Strings And Shiny Things, 1994.
     
  10. Jhimmy wrote:

    > I never learned my lesson, I then bought a Ricoh XR-X (good bargain
    > at the time) and that too went carput after a rain getting into it. For
    > the record, I used good qualtity camera cases and had them in my
    > rucksack during the rain.


    I usually wrap my cameras in thick plastic bags inside the cases, and only
    put them in the rucksack if the rain is really heavy (and if I have room).

    Paul
     
  11. Mark Thompson wrote:

    > DSLR's are becoming mass market now, so the timing is pretty
    > good for Sony.


    Mass market? I think the vast majority of camera buyers would prefer a
    credit card sized camera weighing roughly half a feather any day. ;-)

    Paul
     
  12. >> DSLR's are becoming mass market now, so the timing is pretty
    >> good for Sony.

    >
    > Mass market? I think the vast majority of camera buyers would prefer a
    > credit card sized camera weighing roughly half a feather any day. ;-)


    Mass market in the sense that they're now being bought by 'regular' people
    rather than just enthusiasts - I'd bet a fair wodge of cash that sales of
    DSLRs will rocket over the next two years compared to the last two.
    Whilst enthusiasts may turn their nose up at the sony brand, it oozes
    quality compared to many of it's mass market competitors - e.g. alba in
    audio.
     
  13. Surfer!

    Surfer! Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, Mark
    Thompson <[email protected]> writes
    >>> DSLR's are becoming mass market now, so the timing is pretty
    >>> good for Sony.

    >>
    >> Mass market? I think the vast majority of camera buyers would prefer a
    >> credit card sized camera weighing roughly half a feather any day. ;-)

    >
    >Mass market in the sense that they're now being bought by 'regular' people
    >rather than just enthusiasts - I'd bet a fair wodge of cash that sales of
    >DSLRs will rocket over the next two years compared to the last two.
    >Whilst enthusiasts may turn their nose up at the sony brand, it oozes
    >quality compared to many of it's mass market competitors - e.g. alba in
    >audio.


    IMHO the price of DLSR is still dropping - yes, sales will increase over
    the next 2 years, but there are still a few drawbacks compared to film.
    One is that if you get dust on the sensor it's a problem - the sensor is
    very delicate and easily damaged. Film, OTOH, gives you a brand new
    'sensor' with each frame. Also DSLR has all the disadvantages of any
    digital camera on a long trip in out-of-the-way places like the Nepal
    treks - those of needing to be able to recharge batteries, and of having
    to buy lots of extra memory cards you will rarely need. I've also come
    across the idea that they don't behave as well in extremes of
    temperature as film cameras do.

    So, at present I'm happy to have a compact digital for snap-shot
    photography, and to use my film SLR (Pentax ME Super) for attempts at
    more serious stuff. Also, I feel that at present the extra discipline of
    film will help me to become more thoughtful about what I take.


    --
    Surfer!
    Email to: ramwater at uk2 dot net
     
  14. In message <[email protected]>, Surfer!
    <[email protected]> writes
    >In message <[email protected]>, Mark
    >Thompson <[email protected]> writes
    >>>> DSLR's are becoming mass market now, so the timing is pretty
    >>>> good for Sony.
    >>>
    >>> Mass market? I think the vast majority of camera buyers would prefer a
    >>> credit card sized camera weighing roughly half a feather any day. ;-)

    >>
    >>Mass market in the sense that they're now being bought by 'regular' people
    >>rather than just enthusiasts - I'd bet a fair wodge of cash that sales of
    >>DSLRs will rocket over the next two years compared to the last two.
    >>Whilst enthusiasts may turn their nose up at the sony brand, it oozes
    >>quality compared to many of it's mass market competitors - e.g. alba in
    >>audio.

    >
    >IMHO the price of DLSR is still dropping - yes, sales will increase
    >over the next 2 years, but there are still a few drawbacks compared to
    >film. One is that if you get dust on the sensor it's a problem - the
    >sensor is very delicate and easily damaged.


    This is only likely if you change lenses regularly. Cleaning sensors
    isn't difficult.

    > Film, OTOH, gives you a brand new 'sensor' with each frame. Also DSLR
    >has all the disadvantages of any digital camera on a long trip in
    >out-of-the-way places like the Nepal treks - those of needing to be
    >able to recharge batteries, and of having to buy lots of extra memory
    >cards you will rarely need.


    Batteries last a surprisingly long time and spares can be carried. I've
    trekked in Nepal with a DSLR without problems. Memory cards are very
    light and not that expensive these days. They soon cover their cost in
    the film you don't have to buy or have processed. I now think digital
    makes more sense than film for trips in out-of-the-way places.

    > I've also come across the idea that they don't behave as well in
    >extremes of temperature as film cameras do.


    I've used digital cameras down to -20 and up to +35 without problems. I
    don't behave well in temperatures outside that range!

    >
    >So, at present I'm happy to have a compact digital for snap-shot
    >photography, and to use my film SLR (Pentax ME Super) for attempts at
    >more serious stuff. Also, I feel that at present the extra discipline
    >of film will help me to become more thoughtful about what I take.


    You should be just as disciplined with digital. Exposure is still
    critical and composition and lighting are the same. An advantage of
    digital is being able to check the histogram and make sure highlights
    aren't burnt out.

    Not that there's anything wrong with film. I still carry a film camera
    as well as digital on most trips. However I carry a film compact that
    will take just as good photographs as a film DSLR. Digital compacts
    don't take as good photographs as DSLRs because of the smaller sensor
    (though the best are very good).
     
  15. Andy Howell

    Andy Howell Guest

    On 22/1/06 14:20, in article [email protected], "Chris
    Townsend" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Batteries last a surprisingly long time and spares can be carried. I've
    > trekked in Nepal with a DSLR without problems. Memory cards are very
    > light and not that expensive these days. They soon cover their cost in
    > the film you don't have to buy or have processed. I now think digital
    > makes more sense than film for trips in out-of-the-way places.


    I always carry a spare when backpacking. Last summer I was three weeks on
    the trail and the original battery still showed as fully charged!

    I've also had few problems in very cold weather with the batteries either.
    For example, over New Year I was camping at -10 and the batteries were fine.
    Amateur DSLRs such as the Nikon D70 and Canon 350 are made of plastic,
    which I reckons helps when the weather gets cold!


    --
    Andy Howell, Birmingham, UK. To mail simply put back the dots ...

    Must Be Over There ...
    http://www.ecotrend.org.uk/trek
     
  16. The Reid

    The Reid Guest

    Following up to Chris Townsend

    >This is only likely if you change lenses regularly. Cleaning sensors
    >isn't difficult.


    I'm always changing lenses, often in poor conditions. I've read
    cleaning yourself can be a risk, is that true or is it only a
    problem if you act idiotically?
    --
    Mike Reid
    Walk-eat-photos UK "http://www.fellwalk.co.uk" <-- you can email [email protected] this site
    Walk-eat-photos Spain "http://www.fell-walker.co.uk" <-- [email protected] all, it's a spamtrap
     
  17. Nick Pedley

    Nick Pedley Guest

    "The Reid" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]

    > I've read
    > cleaning yourself can be a risk, is that true or is it only a
    > problem if you act idiotically?
    > --
    > Mike Reid


    Surely that depends on if you drop the soap in the shower?

    Nick
     
  18. Alan Bremner

    Alan Bremner Guest

    On Sun, 22 Jan 2006 10:36:58 +0000, Surfer! <[email protected]> wrote:

    > [...] there are still a few drawbacks compared to film.
    > One is that if you get dust on the sensor it's a problem - the sensor is
    > very delicate and easily damaged.


    True, but in most DSLRs it's also covered by a glass filter so you
    don't actually contact the sensor per se.

    > Also, I feel that at present the extra discipline of film
    > will help me to become more thoughtful about what I take.


    As Chris T. said, digital doesn't automatically require less
    discipline. I'm just as thrifty with frames expended on digital as I
    was with 35mm, especially as a glance at the image histogram after
    taking usually tells me exactly how much EC is required for the
    'perfect' exposure. With 35mm I'd be more likely to take several
    bracketed shots to be sure.

    Al
    --
    [This space left intentionally blank]
     
  19. Alan Bremner

    Alan Bremner Guest

    On Mon, 23 Jan 2006 09:22:03 +0000, The Reid
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I'm always changing lenses, often in poor conditions. I've read
    >cleaning yourself can be a risk, is that true or is it only a
    >problem if you act idiotically?


    I'd say the latter. I'll change lenses on the hill if I feel the need
    and so far (touch wood!) any accumulation of dust has been minor and
    easily dealt with by a Rocket blower. Wet cleaning is obviously
    slightly more risky as you're making physical contact but only if
    you're ham-fisted.

    Take a look at <http://www.pbase.com/copperhill/image/11013788> to get
    an idea of how simple the process actually is.

    Al
    --
    [This space left intentionally blank]
     
  20. Mark Thompson wrote:

    > Mass market in the sense that they're now being bought by 'regular'
    > people rather than just enthusiasts - I'd bet a fair wodge of cash
    > that sales of DSLRs will rocket over the next two years compared to
    > the last two. Whilst enthusiasts may turn their nose up at the sony
    > brand, it oozes quality compared to many of it's mass market
    > competitors - e.g. alba in audio.


    Indeed, but that's quality of electronics, not lenses. As every serious
    photographer knows, it's the lens that takes the picture, the camera just
    records what comes through it. Sony don't have the long standing reputation
    of companies like Nikon and Canon where lenses are concerned.

    Of course, sensor quality is a big factor now. With film cameras you can
    choose a brand according to the lenses you want to use, because you can use
    any film in any camera, but now the camera itself is a big factor, because
    it's like choosing a single brand of film and then having to stick with it
    for every shot.

    Paul
     
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