[Column] Epson EVF Might Threaten Existence of Traditional SLR Cameras

Dec 2, 2009
Tomohiro Otsuki, Nikkei Electronics
The 0.6-inch model
The 0.6-inch model
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I have never seen an optical finder that offers such a fine view. That is what I thought when I saw the demonstration of a high-temperature polysilicon TFT LCD panel developed and manufactured by Seiko Epson Corp at Inter BEE 2009, a trade show that ran from Nov 17 to 19, 2009.

I had already seen the demonstration of a 0.47-inch model with a resolution of 800 x 600 pixels in October 2009 (See related article) but was very impressed by the 0.6-inch model with a resolution of 1,024 x 768 pixels this time.

Though there is not much difference in their specifications, I felt that there is a clear difference. I was probably impressed by colorful images, but the LCD panel displayed very clear images.

When I looked into the 0.47-inch model through a 10x optical ocular lens, I could find what it looked like a pixel. But I could not see a pixel with the 0.6-inch model probably because it displays larger images (The two models have the same pixel pitch). So, I felt like examining the advantages and disadvantages of the new finder by using a high-end single-lens reflex (SLR) camera for comparison.

If the two finders show images of the same quality, mirror-less EVF (electronic view finder) cameras will endanger the existence of traditional SLR cameras. Because, with EVF cameras, it is possible to show the settings of the camera on images as well as to check the aperture and the effects of image processing functions before taking pictures.

Camera lovers are particular about the images seen from finders and willing to pay a reasonable amount of money for good finders. So, high-priced SLR cameras are more likely to replace SLR systems with EVFs than low-priced SLR cameras. This is my honest opinion.

The following are the movies and pictures of the images seen through the EVF. They are shot from the 10x optical ocular lens attached to the panel and by Sony Corp's DSC-WX1 whose focal length was adjusted to about 38mm (35mm film equivalent).

The EVF does not use a field sequential method, and, thus, there is no color breakup.

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