Mac OS X 10.7.3 supports new crop of compact cameras

“If there’s any doubt about the accelerating shift from traditional SLRs to more compact interchangeable-lens cameras, let the newly released Mac OS X 10.7.3 update put them to rest,” Stephen Shankland reports for CNET.

“Of the eleven cameras whose raw image formats Lion now supports, six of them are compact mirrorless models,” Shankland reports. “They are the Nikon 1 J1 and V1, the Olympus Pen E-PL1s, E-PM1, and E-PM1; and the Sony Alpha NEX-5N. All these models forsake SLR’s flip-up mirror and optical viewfinder, enabling a more compact design.”

Shankland reports, “Also supported in the update are Canon’s hot little number, the PowerShot S100, Nikon’s competing Coolpix P7100, and Panasonic’s superzoom FZ150. Last on the list are Sony’s Alpha SLT-A77 and SLT-A65. These cameras look mostly like an SLR but actually use a fixed, partially transparent pellicle mirror.”

Read more in the full article here.


    1. Not better… smaller.
      Some have same size sensor as DSLR. So image quality is similar.
      However, shooting outdoors can be a pain without the expensive, add-on viewfinder (only some have as an option).
      If it’s an important shoot, I’ll grab my 5DmkII. If I want something along for an unexpected shot, I’ll take the GF2 or NEX5n.
      Old photog saying, “The best camera is the one you have with you”.

    2. Yes, they are. The mirror servers no useful purpose and should have been done away with a decade ago. The only reason they’re still selling cameras with mechanical mirrors is to preserve the standard lens formats. Getting rid of the mirror means you need new lenses.

      Mirrorless cameras are based on new lens mount standards. There’s the open E-Mount standard from Sony (anyone can make lenses) and the Micro-four-thirds mount standard from Olympus and Panasonic (which is part of a consortium)

      Its unclear which of these two formats will win– MFT was first out of the gate and has good products, but Sony has come on really strong with very small camera bodies and rapid iteration.

      One downside of these kind of cameras is the lack of electronic viewfinder, but that’s not so common anymore. The NEX-7 has a viewfinder built in, and the latest designs from both groups have add-on viewfinders you can buy (Which are generally quite good, according to the reviews.)

      Sony NEX cameras have an APS-C sized sensor which is significantly bigger than the MFT “4/3” sized sensor.

      Some DSLRs are full frame (like the Cannon 5d mk II)…. but much of the advantage of that full frame is lost in the 5D by its incompetent engineering design (moire problems and terrible jello effect in video.)

      But the future of cameras, at least by unit volume, is cellphones.

      1. “The mirror servers no useful purpose and should have been done away with a decade ago.”

        lol. You clearly do not take pictures for a living… These type of mirrorless systems work great for point and shoots yielding a compact size. That is all.

      2. Yeah… did incompetent engineering stop George Lucas from using multiple 5DmkII’s (and other Canon models) in the recently released “Red Tails” ? (some, not all scenes) …Or from being used in other major motion pictures? (Google it)

        I did 2 feature length films last year, both official selections in film festivals (Cincinnati/Louisville)… that were completely shot with Canon DSLRs.

        Do they have shortcomings? Sure do!
        Do they make great looking video? Sure do!
        Is better stuff coming down the road? Sure is!

        There is no one best tool. Are you are doing more stills or video? Are you more comfortable with a viewfinder, or back mounted screen? Is the interface compatible with the way you reason? Do you have an exiting lens collection that will work directly, or through adapters? (on both films I did I used a combination of Canon, Nikon, and Olympus lenses.)

        Is mirrorless better? in some cases. Are DSLRs better? In some cases. Each task has an better tool.

      3. wrong dude. The pentaprism and mirror in TRUE SLRs provide a superior optical experience over the LCDs. And if the LCD is the view screen on the back of the camera (IE: no internal viewfinder) you also loose the ability to PROPERLY hold the camera.

        Future tech/ hi tech isn’t always better.

      4. “Getting rid of the mirror means you need new lenses.”

        Only if you redesign the camera to take advantage of the potential reduced flange-to-sensor distance. Which has been the main reason for m43 and Sony’s NEX series, granted, but Canon (for example) *could* redesign their current DSLR line as mirrorless if they wanted to.

        It wouldn’t make much sense, except for a bit of weight reduction, but they could if they wanted to.

  1. Moirrorless cameras do not have focusing pe3ntaprism in them. So, these cameras can get rid of the mirror. This has three major effects. One, the viewfinder doesn’t “go dark” during exposure. Second, the camera vibrates less because of no mirror action. Third, because of no mirror, the camera can be designed to be lighter and smaller than DSLRs.

    Better, maybe. Different, yes.

      1. This will be nice.

        On another rant, I want to slap the people that have the little point and shoot digitals that keep the fake SLR sound on when shooting pictures. Especially during school concerts and plays. Very distracting.

        RTFM if you’re going to buy technology.

        1. Many jurisdictions REQUIRE that cameras make a sound when capturing an image. This is to protect personal privacy. More specifically to keep perverts from taking up-skirt type photos of unsuspecting women, public locker rooms/showers, bathrooms, etc. True. A lot of pervs around.

          1. I can understand that, but my old Olympus has a menu choice to turn it off. My old cell phone, same thing, original iPhone, same thing- mute button.

            No sound out of any of them.

      2. Actually, there still is a shutter noise. Mirrorless cameras still have a mechanical shutter. It’s around half as loud as a DSLR, since there is no mirror.

        I almost got the Canon G12 (to use on a movie set last year) because of the noise issue. Wound up being too busy during “takes” to take any stills. Glad I held off.

    1. You should get with the times. Canon had one– past tense– in the 1960s, but they haven’t been building them continuously since then. And those mirrors sucked compared to the Sony solution.

      Reality is, Sony is very innovative in the camera space, especially compared to a company like Canon (which seems to be doing nothing cutting edge at all.)

  2. Still missing support for Sigma cameras. That may be another problem with Sigma’s management decisions rather than Apple. Nonetheless, I want someone to get that handled.

    I really like Sigma’s cameras [their sensor, particularly], but management there has made some very questionable decisions, the most notable of which has been the pricing on their most recent high end camera. Since it has been so universally condemned, I can’t help but think someone has got to finally brush the sand off their head and get some sense over there. If they are the ones not permitting companies like Apple the ability to provide RAW support for their cameras, they can take the full blame while its customers continue to use workarounds. Still, I can’t help but think that Apple/Sigma/Somebody can get this handled. The format has been around for a good length of time now and it’s past time to provide more universal support for it.

  3. The main issue for me is that they haven’t supported the NEX5n on Snow Leopard. Why?

    Sure… I’m evaluating Lion on a non-business mini… but I’m not ready to make the switch on my MacPro work machine.
    (not going to argue reasons I’m still on 10.6.8. Reasons are valid for me.) I’ll go Lion when they release a new MacPro… or when I have to build a Hackintosh because the MacPro is discontinued.

    1. You can get around the Snow Leopard issue pretty easily.

      Get the Adobe DNG Converter and process your RAW images first, before feeding them to Aperture or whatever you use.

      Adds a bit of time, but it’s worked for me while waiting for OS X support for a new camera to arrive.

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