Earlier this year I wrote a post about how mirrorless cameras are the future and whether that future has already arrived for the majority of photographers. The questions posed in that blog post six months ago are still unanswered but six months is a long time in the world of technology and a friend recently pointed me in the direction of a new product which could make even mirrorless cameras look like relics from a bygone era and should really give the major camera manufacturers something to think about.
The Light 16 camera looks like is could revolutionise the camera industry – it (reputedly) has amazing image quality, great low light performance, a ridiculous 52 megapixel resolution, touch screen interface, built-in wifi and sharing, the ability to adjust the focus and the depth of field (up to f/1.2) after you have taken the shot, 35-150mm optical zoom, built in HDR, all in a package that fits in your pocket! What is there not to like? OK it is not exactly cheap but you can’t have everything.
The Light L16 camera is still in development and is due for release late summer 2016, there aren’t even any review units available yet, however the fact that the product is actually being built and large amounts of money are being invested in it tells us that it is more than a concept and will become a reality. How good will that reality be? We don’t know but this is just the first iteration – all products improve as new versions are released.
As Thom Hogan regularly points out the Nikons and Canons of this world seem to be stuck in a cycle of minor iterations to their line up rather than delivering what customers actually want or rethinking what a camera should be. The makers of the Light L16 are doing exactly that – starting from scratch with cutting edge technology to deliver a product which gives us what we want.
Can you imaging Nikon or Canon coming up with such a product? As with most cutting edge products they are made by startups who have no existing products with compatibility issues, not many bureaucratic procedures getting in the way of development, minimal overheads, and motivated staff who often have a real stake in the success of the product.
It will be interesting to see how good the final product is and how successful it is. I suspect the major camera manufacturers will be taking an even greater interest.