why SLRs still have a few years to live

why SLRs still have a few years to live

We’ve been hearing about the death of SLRs for many years, but DSLRs are still alive. And although it is true that all the signs point in that direction, from the fact that more mirrorless than SLR are already sold until Canon itself has said that the EOS 1Dx Mark III will be its last professional model of this format, I I think SLR cameras still have quite a few years to live. And of course I am going to explain why.

But before I tell you; The other day when I heard the news through Canon Rumors I was struck by the headline stating that the Canon EOS 1Dx Mark III it was going to be the last Canon SLR … without further ado. I quickly went to the source they cited and from there to the medium that broadcast the interview with the CEO of Canon where such a thing was stated.


The differences between certain SLR and mirrorless models have been greatly shortened.

The interview, of course, was in Japanese but, using Google translator (one works with English but with Japanese …), it did not seem to me at all that Mitarai wanted to say such a thing; Also, the statement I made at the end that there is still a strong demand for DSLR cameras for beginners and enthusiasts made it very clear to me that it was necessary to include, yes or yes, the one of “professional” in the title. I mean, it could have titled “The Canon EOS 1Dx Mark III will be the brand’s latest SLR …“but, by dint of losing pull, it had to be said that”The Canon EOS 1Dx Mark III will be the brand’s latest PROFESSIONAL SLR …“.

However, throughout the day I saw how many media were publishing the news not including that detail, the “professional” thing; Some even mentioned something in the body of the article that the thing could be due to an error in the Japanese translation, but even so they titled with that idea (which they later had to correct). And, no doubt, saying that the largest SLR manufacturer in the world put an end to this type of camera was striking news.

The dark reason why SLRs are disappearing from the photographic market

It is not my intention to criticize anyone or give me medals with this story, it was only relevant because, when it happened, the first thing I thought is, is Canon really not going to make more DSLRs? And what about the thousands of users of its simplest models? Are you really going to abandon them? I already anticipated it a bit in the article in question but, honestly, I do not see Canon ceasing to manufacture this type of cameras for a few years for a number of issues.

Why do reflexes still have a long life?

There are several reasons that lead me to say this, so we go by parts. First of all is what it said: Canon (like Nikon by the way) has a large user base of their simpler cameras and it would be a suicide to leave them abandoned in the gutter.

Why Reflex Still Have Years To Live 04

The market is not there to lose business opportunities, and although the mirrorless ones generate more profits, just as the owner of a bar is interested in the usual clientele that goes every day without fail to have coffee even if they spend little money, to Canon you are interested in keeping those users that they are already “Canonists” (or Nikon to those who are “Nikonists”), although the most expensive cameras are not bought.

It doesn’t seem logical that the thousands of SLR users are going to switch to a mirrorless camera overnight.

Frankly, its simpler cameras have been sold “by the handfuls” and in recent years I have had enough of seeing some of the models derived from the famous EOS 300D (which was the first “affordable DSLR”) hanging around the neck of those who frequented any tourist site. Now they look a little less, and they no longer stand out so much in the crowd because of people taking photos with their mobile, but there they are.

And sure, not all of these are going to go to a mirrorless camera overnight. For this There are many reasons: the fear of changing systems, the compatibility of lenses that is only possible via adapter (which is a bummer) and, let’s not forget, the always important question of price, which is considerably higher in the case of mirrorless cameras and also, not least, on the lenses (and other accessories).

But it is also that the range of mirrorless Canon is not well developed yet. There Nikon I think has a bit of an advantage because, although there are not many models to choose from, you can buy a camera with an APS-C sensor or full frame of the same mount, which is not the case with Canon. It maintains two mounts, one for each type of sensor, and we still don’t know if the EOS M is going to disappear or not. At the time I think it was a good idea to develop it, but now I think they should announce (as soon as possible please) if they are going to integrate all the mirrorless in the RF mount or go ahead with both.

If this second case were not given and, like Nikon, they decided on a single mount, I think they should take out more affordable models for all types of audiences and with cropped sensors. Frankly I don’t see users who now have a Canon APS-C format SLR buying a full format mirrorless one. Some may do it, but many would end up going to the competition … or settling for taking photos with their mobile, if there is no other alternative.

The best mirrorless cameras to start in photography

Beyond its advantages and disadvantages compared to mirrorless (some of which by the way have been diluted little by little), today SLR cameras are still worth it for many reasons. In this article two years ago we gave a few that are still valid: they are a consolidated and fully developed technology, they have lower prices, they offer better ergonomics and they are the best option for those who want to learn photography.

Honestly many people nor does he know how to distinguish between a SLR and a mirrorless one. When I do Hunting Bargains on Fridays (with the best deals on photographic products) I frequently find websites of e-commerce in which they put models from one category into the other … Because they don’t know how to differentiate them. Like many people who when they decide to buy a “real camera” they go to the store or look at the webs and do not care what type it is.

Who is not a photographer, when he wants to buy a camera he looks for one that you like it, that it seems good to you and that it fits you on what can be spent, many times without really knowing how to differentiate between one format and another. It is true that mobiles have made many people settle for their smartphone And do not consider buying a camera, but it is also true that many have become fond of photography thanks to them and, at one point, they may want to buy one. And if that happens, it makes a lot of sense that opt for a rather cheap camera, because spending a fortune on a device that “only” takes photos is not for everyone …

Why Reflex Still Have Years To Live

For certain genres, it seems reasonable to think that DSLRs will still have a long way to go.

But I also think that this will not only affect the field of “cheap SLRs”, because I think Canon (and most likely Nikon) will continue to launch more or less advanced DSLR models. Let me explain: almost every time we have talked about this issue, someone has come out talking about whether it is proven that using electronic viewfinders extensively is harmful for the view.

We are not going to say that it is a lie, but that is it would have to be proved (gentlemen manufacturers, take note); What we are clear about is that for certain genres and professionals, a reflex viewfinder can be more comfortable and convenient for your eyesight. For this (and some other) reason I think that, although the most powerful cameras from Canon and Nikon are going to be CSC from now on, these brands will still launch advanced or semi-professional models.

Why do SLRs disappear?

Comrade Fernando told the other day the dark reason why the SLRs are going to disappear and it seems that his words have caused debate. He said that “a good DSLR camera is very difficult to manufacture“and what do you suspect”that the SLRs disappear because the manufacturers have decided to do so. And we photographers have let ourselves be dragged“.

Why Reflex Still Have Years To Live 05

In the current photographic market, the one that does not evolve is destined to disappear and neither Canon nor Nikon could compete with Sony without certain resignations

And I agree with him on many things, but for me the reason this happens is a simple matter of evolution. Years ago, cameras stopped being a world apart and entered fully into the world of electronics and here, the one that does not evolve is destined to disappear. Why precisely the most professional SLRs are the first to be discontinued? Because they have no choice but to face the competition, in this case customized at Sony.

A brand that, since it entered the market, has done nothing but “rock hard” and innovate, forcing two “dinosaurs” like Canon and Nikon to “get on their feet”. I imagine the leaders of both companies when they were shown the specifications of the Sony A1 that gave “a review” of their most powerful cameras … They may have put their hands to their heads but, quickly, they would think: believe these from Sony? What are we not capable of doing with a camera that makes them face them? They will find out!

The Canon EOS 1Dx Mark III will be the brand's latest professional DSLR, says Fujio Mitarai, CEO of Canon

And they did, with the Canon EOS R3 and Nikon Z9, but this had a priceIf you want to keep up, you have to leave out the reflex system, since it does not offer the crazy specifications that are carried today, such as 30 fps bursts and others. It’s a shame but what evolution has is that you have to leave the “old” behind.

And of course, this has many consequences, such as that we have to pay the users who, as Fernando says, we see how the cameras “they look more and more like a car, which loses much of its value when it leaves the dealership“. That is why I also believe that the SLR will continue to be maintained, although its market share remains in an increasingly smaller portion, as has happened with other types of cameras.

Why Reflex Still Have Years To Live 06

Anyway, to finish reminding you that this is only an opinion article, therefore subjective, and that my only intention is to keep the debate going. Do youDo you think that there will still be many more new SLR models more or less simple? Or do you think they will disappear quickly? How would you like Canon / Nikon to act on their product ranges?

As always, thank you very much in advance and don’t forget that the important thing is to continue enjoying taking photos, whatever the device.