Brian Micklethwait's Blog

In which I continue to seek part time employment as the ruler of the world.

Home

www.google.co.uk


Recent Comments


Monthly Archives


Most recent entries


Search


Advanced Search


Other Blogs I write for

Brian Micklethwait's Education Blog

CNE Competition
CNE Intellectual Property
Samizdata
Transport Blog


Blogroll

2 Blowhards
6000 Miles from Civilisation
A Decent Muesli
Adloyada
Adventures in Capitalism
Alan Little
Albion's Seedling
Alex Ross: The Rest Is Noise
Alex Singleton
AngloAustria
Another Food Blog
Antoine Clarke
Antoine Clarke's Election Watch
Armed and Dangerous
Art Of The State Blog
Biased BBC
Bishop Hill
BLDG BLOG
Bloggers Blog
Blognor Regis
Blowing Smoke
Boatang & Demetriou
Boing Boing
Boris Johnson
Brazen Careerist
Bryan Appleyard
Burning Our Money
Cafe Hayek
Cato@Liberty
Charlie's Diary
Chase me ladies, I'm in the cavalry
Chicago Boyz
China Law Blog
Cicero's Songs
City Comforts
Civilian Gun Self-Defense Blog
Clay Shirky
Climate Resistance
Climate Skeptic
Coffee & Complexity
Coffee House
Communities Dominate Brands
Confused of Calcutta
Conservative Party Reptile
Contra Niche
Contrary Brin
Counting Cats in Zanzibar
Скрипучая беседка
CrozierVision
Dave Barry
Davids Medienkritik
David Thompson
Deleted by tomorrow
deputydog
diamond geezer
Dilbert.Blog
Dizzy Thinks
Dodgeblogium
Don't Hold Your Breath
Douglas Carswell Blog
dropsafe
Dr Robert Lefever
Dr. Weevil
ecomyths
engadget
Englands Freedome, Souldiers Rights
English Cut
English Russia
EU Referendum
Ezra Levant
Everything I Say is Right
Fat Man on a Keyboard
Ferraris for all
Flickr blog
Freeborn John
Freedom and Whisky
From The Barrel of a Gun
ft.com/maverecon
Fugitive Ink
Future Perfect
FuturePundit
Gaping Void
Garnerblog
Gates of Vienna
Gizmodo
Global Warming Politics
Greg Mankiw's Blog
Guido Fawkes' blog
HE&OS
Here Comes Everybody
Hit & Run
House of Dumb
Iain Dale's Diary
Ideas
Idiot Toys
IMAO
Indexed
India Uncut
Instapundit
Intermezzo
Jackie Danicki
James Delingpole
James Fallows
Jeffrey Archer's Official Blog
Jessica Duchen's classical music blog
Jihad Watch
Joanne Jacobs
Johan Norberg
John Redwood
Jonathan's Photoblog
Kristine Lowe
Laissez Faire Books
Languagehat
Last of the Few
Lessig Blog
Libertarian Alliance: Blog
Liberty Alone
Liberty Dad - a World Without Dictators
Lib on the United Kingdom
Little Man, What Now?
listen missy
Loic Le Meur Blog
L'Ombre de l'Olivier
London Daily Photo
Londonist
Mad Housewife
Mangan's Miscellany
Marginal Revolution
Mark Wadsworth
Media Influencer
Melanie Phillips
Metamagician and the Hellfire Club
Michael Jennings
Michael J. Totten's Middle East Journal
Mick Hartley
More Than Mind Games
mr eugenides
Mutualist Blog: Free Market Anti-Capitalism
My Boyfriend Is A Twat
My Other Stuff
Natalie Solent
Nation of Shopkeepers
Neatorama
neo-neocon
Never Trust a Hippy
NO2ID NewsBlog
Non Diet Weight Loss
Normblog
Nurses for Reform blog
Obnoxio The Clown
Oddity Central
Oliver Kamm
On an Overgrown Path
One Man & His Blog
Owlthoughts of a peripatetic pedant
Oxford Libertarian Society /blog
Patri's Peripatetic Peregrinations
phosita
Picking Losers
Pigeon Blog
Police Inspector Blog
PooterGeek
Power Line
Private Sector Development blog
Public Interest.co.uk
Publius Pundit
Quotulatiousness
Rachel Lucas
RealClimate
Remember I'm the Bloody Architect
Rob's Blog
Sandow
Scrappleface
Setting The World To Rights
Shane Greer
Shanghaiist
SimonHewittJones.com The Violin Blog
Sinclair's Musings
Slipped Disc
Sky Watching My World
Social Affairs Unit
Squander Two Blog
Stephen Fry
Stuff White People Like
Stumbling and Mumbling
Style Bubble
Sunset Gun
Survival Arts
Susan Hill
Teblog
Techdirt
Technology Liberation Front
The Adam Smith Institute Blog
The Agitator
The AntRant
The Becker-Posner Blog
The Belgravia Dispatch
The Belmont Club
The Big Blog Company
The Big Picture
the blog of dave cole
The Corridor of Uncertainty (a Cricket blog)
The Croydonian
The Daily Ablution
The Devil's Advocate
The Devil's Kitchen
The Dissident Frogman
The Distributed Republic
The Early Days of a Better Nation
The Examined Life
The Filter^
The Fly Bottle
The Freeway to Serfdom
The Future of Music
The Futurist
The Happiness Project
The Jarndyce Blog
The London Fog
The Long Tail
The Lumber Room
The Online Photographer
The Only Winning Move
The Policeman's Blog
The Road to Surfdom
The Sharpener
The Speculist
The Surfer
The Wedding Photography Blog
The Welfare State We're In
things magazine
TigerHawk
Tim Blair
Tim Harford
Tim Worstall
tomgpalmer.com
tompeters!
Transterrestrial Musings
UK Commentators - Laban Tall's Blog
UK Libertarian Party
Unqualified Offerings
Violins and Starships
Virginia Postrel
Vodkapundit
WebUrbanist
we make money not art
What Do I Know?
What's Up With That?
Where the grass is greener
White Sun of the Desert
Why Evolution Is True
Your Freedom and Ours


Websites


Mainstream Media

BBC
Guardian
Economist
Independent
MSNBC
Telegraph
The Sun
This is London
Times


Syndicate

RSS 1.0
RSS 2.0
Atom
Feedburner
Podcasts


Categories

Advertising
Africa
Anglosphere
Architecture
Art
Asia
Atheism
Australasia
Billion Monkeys
Bits from books
Bloggers and blogging
Books
Brian Micklethwait podcasts
Brians
Bridges
Business
Career counselling
Cartoons
Cats and kittens
China
Civil liberties
Classical music
Comedy
Comments
Computer graphics
Cranes
Crime
Current events
Democracy
Design
Digital photographers
Drones
Economics
Education
Emmanuel Todd
Environment
Europe
Expression Engine
Family
Food and drink
France
Friends
Getting old
Globalisation
Healthcare
History
How the mind works
India
Intellectual property
Japan
Kevin Dowd
Language
Latin America
Law
Libertarianism
Links
Literature
London
Media and journalism
Middle East and Islam
Movies
Music
My blog ruins
My photographs
Open Source
Opera
Other creatures
Painting
Photography
Podcasting
Poetry
Politics
Pop music
Propaganda
Quote unquote
Radio
Religion
Roof clutter
Russia
Scaffolding
Science
Science fiction
Sculpture
Signs and notices
Social Media
Society
Software
South America
Space
Sport
Technology
Television
The internet
The Micklethwait Clock
Theatre
This and that
This blog
Transport
Travel
USA
Video
War


Monday October 18 2010

After an annoying few days trying to use my foolishly acquired Panasonic Lumix G1, which is the nicest little camera I could find that uses interchangeable lenses (my idea being that interchangeable lenses might somehow improve things), I switched back to my trusty Canon, with its one lens that does everything from close-up to mega-magnified.  And boy was it a relief.  My new question is: what is the best camera I can get that doesn’t involve farting around with different lenses?  With tons of zoom, and tons of everything, so I can photo the Shard of Glass from a mile away, or the Shard of Glass tiny in the far distance plus the entire nearby gasometer frame that it is visible through, with one push of the button in between shots, instead of spending about three damn minutes faffing about with different elephant penises and elephant penis caps and risking hundreds of pounds worth of damage to every piece of kit involved.  I just want to be able to point, twiddle a bit, and shoot.  No flak jacket pockets full of obscenely expensive alternatives, thank you.

So it is that comparative reviews like this one (thank you Alex Singleton for sending the link), of the latest Canon superzoom one lens (maybe lots of lenses under there – don’t know, don’t care – call it one lens thing if you want to) camera and the latest Panasonic superzoom one lens (ditto) camera (which looks a lot like my new Panasonic with its stupid add-on lenses) are of such extreme interest to me.  Both the cameras reviewed have those twiddly screens that I love, and which my Canon has.  But whereas my current Canon has only 12x optical zoom, the new Canon has 30x.  Wow.  Great for distant Shards.  The Panasonic has a mere 24x, which is still pretty amazing.  Both look pretty good and I might be tempted yet again.  But the Canon looks too bulky, and maybe they both are.  I really should hold off until an even better answer materialises.

Meanwhile and nevertheless, I hope that both these cameras sell really well, because this is a niche I want to get really big and important.  Like the reviewer says, in his concluding “Memo to Canon and Panasonic”:

When you make a camera targeted at the more serious photographer, why be timid? Cost is a factor for almost everyone, but I believe that if you delivered a higher spec product in this category photographers would willingly pay for it.

Take the focal length range of the SX30, the high frame rates and raw mode of the FZ100, put in a solid manual controlled video mode with decent bit rate, add a terrific EVF like the one in the GH1 or GH2, and you’d have a category killer. Sure cost would be higher, but the market would understand and accept a price hundreds of dollars higher that where they are now. And profit margins would be very high because of the perceived additional value.

Alas, I fear that neither company has the cojones to tackle this challenge. Market segmentation through feature castration appears to be the name of the game throughout the industry.

Maybe next year.

Now I don’t know what any of that means, but it sounds spot on to me.  It sure sounds like he’s saying: answer Brian Micklethwait’s exact question!  Give these people the best damn camera they can hold in one hand while still having a life!  Don’t give them a choice of add-on penises to faff about with!  Give them one super good penis and attach it permanently to the rest of the camera!  Give them just the one thing to worry about buying and about not dropping.

These two superzoomers are pointing in the right direction, but they aren’t yet there.  But, if they can demonstrate that the target sketched out above as one worth shooting for, well, then the shooting will soon happen.  And once a few of those “category killers” are out there, making their very high profit margins, the next thing you know, a few months later, there’ll be the same thing, costing no more than what they are asking now for these two pretty good but still really only compromise, castrated cameras.

imageimage

The funny thing is that a couple of recent camera adverts on the telly have been selling the exact kind of camera that Brian Micklethwait wants.  In these adverts, actor Kevin Spacey, and now actress Sarah Alexander, are to be seen happily prancing about, taking snaps while not being in any way inconvenienced, while simultaneously leading their rich and full lives in glamorous foreign places.  But, Kevin and Sarah are doing this with cameras that are actually very inconvenient, for they have both been starring in lens-swap camera adverts.  And they do their lens-swapping, if they ever do it, with a downright fraudulent ease that probably took hours of rehearsing, many takes, and much broken kit.  The advertisers know what these cameras ought to be.  Too bad the cameras they are actually advertising aren’t it.