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Olympus has transferred its assets to a private equity firm that specializes in restructuring failing businesses. JIP is the same company that acquired Sony's VAIO pc brand when they sold it of four to poor sales and they managed to stay afloat, though greatly reduced. I hope they can weather the storm.

 

Dave

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I don't know, but I got rid of my Olympus gear. Never truly liked it. I wanted Sony, got talked out of it for an OMD e-M5 MKii. It was a good camera, but never liked it. Sold it and got a Sony a6400 w 18-135 lens. I like the look and feel of it. Lots of learning to do still. 

 

I think the bigger issue is the camera industry is changing. I don't have real world statistics, but I would say 80% of the people taking pictures solely use their cellphones. It is probably even higher than that. That leaves a very small population that would by camera gear. When pieces are expensive, it limits your customers even further. I don't see everyone surviving in this game. Just not enough demand. I see Sony, Panasonic, Fuji, Nikon, and Canon surviving. There are just too many players for a small segment now.

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11 hours ago, Docker123 said:


Specifically Olympus Imaging. Not all of Olympus.

 

 

I actually meant to write "imaging assets". Thanks for the add-on. 

 

The camera sales pie is definitely shrinking and a small piece of it is smaller than ever.

 

 

Dave

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2 hours ago, bigrednole said:

I don't have real world statistics, but I would say 80% of the people taking pictures solely use their cellphones. It is probably even higher than that. That leaves a very small population that would by camera gear. When pieces are expensive, it limits your customers even further. I don't see everyone surviving in this game. Just not enough demand. I see Sony, Panasonic, Fuji, Nikon, and Canon surviving. There are just too many players for a small segment now.

 

That pretty much covers it except that based on 19M camera sold in 2018 vs. 1.5B smartphones, I'd say your 80% number was generous. ☹️

 

image.png.3006a8d5b87cce11660101ecf78c48f0.png

 

 

Worldwide smartphone sales:

image.png.eb1f2571b66a170e1a4e4e78eaaafe24.png

 

 

Dave

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13 hours ago, pierces said:

 

That pretty much covers it except that based on 19M camera sold in 2018 vs. 1.5B smartphones, I'd say your 80% number was generous. ☹️

 

image.png.3006a8d5b87cce11660101ecf78c48f0.png

 

 

Worldwide smartphone sales:

image.png.eb1f2571b66a170e1a4e4e78eaaafe24.png

 

 

Dave

 

Those amazing smartphones, and when you consider the iPhone, Galaxy and other premium phones what they sell for and what volumes they move the revenue and profits enable huge investment in hardware and software that continues to push the photography experience and output from those smartphones.  Most sport two lens, and some three or more, who needs that bulky thing hanging around your neck?  

 

I find the new D6 and D850 very little value for what they cost.    

 

This Olympus story is sad, my first DSLR was an OM2, and almost for nostalgia I thought about going to Olympus, so happy I didn't when I leaped to Digital.  

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I find it sad, just as a photography enthusiast, even though I never used Olympus equipment.  It's a sign of the entire industry struggling.  I guess though that's what everyone who gets older starts to feel - that the things they like fall out of favor and go away!  I find many of my favorite hobbies and likes fading in importance to newer generations, and I just don't like the 'new way'.  I love cars and driving - with all the visceral things that come with it - sounds, smells, feel...so electric cars don't generate the same enthusiasm, and the concept of self-driving cars is about as off-putting as anything I can imagine in a nightmare world of tomorrow.  I like to OWN my movies & music, so I still am not convinced by the pay-monthly-for-life stream-everything model when for decades I could listen to any song or watch any movie on a CD or DVD that I owned as many times as I wanted without any additional fees.

And photography - I love everything about dedicated cameras & lenses - it's not just the end result photo for me, it's the interaction with the controls, the manipulation, the composition, the entire art and action of taking a photograph through a viewfinder with manual controls and varying lenses or focal lengths - a phone, no matter how advanced, doesn't give me any of that interaction or ergonomics and function.

Heck, I still like to write.  Not type, but actually WRITE.  In both print and cursive (look it up kids, it's an old writing technique they used to teach us).  I still vastly prefer to talk to someone in person than on a phone, and vastly prefer talking to them on a phone than texting them.  All these things are fading.  I adapt to a degree - but some things I'll take a stand.  As long as someone's still making a traditional interchangeable lens camera or as long as mine keep working, I'll still have one and use it, and as long as a gasoline-engined non-self-driving car is still legally allowed on the road, I'll be driving one even if just as a second car for weekends and fun.

I do think Olympus imaging will go away, not immediately in the hands of the new owner, but eventually...and already there are signs Pentax is barely hanging on to the tiniest shred of the market, so it wouldn't be shocking if they followed.  That one hits a little more, since my first SLR was a Pentax, which I still own.  Hopefully, 3-4 of the camera companies can hold on and become niche market sellers - high-end cameras only, to serve that fading group of enthusiasts that still want a camera to be a camera and a smartphone to be a smartphone.

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  • 3 weeks later...

This is a problem for me. My EM10 mark ii is almost 5 years. I have a great collection of lenses. Do I purchase one more Olympus camera, which in all likelihood, would be the last camera I will buy? Or do I dump it all now and switch to a new system?  Or figure to switch to Panasonic, which will use my m4/3 lenses?

 

Five years ago, I sold all my Sony a-mount camera/lenses/accessories which paid for all my Olympus equipment. I have added only a few lenses since then. I wasn't happy with Sony e-mount, for it's lack of image stabilization. Now that finally is available, but that would be a very expensive switch to get equivalent lenses. Plus the m43 is smaller and lighter. Oh what a dilemma!

 

Plus, due to the virus, I don't go anywhere to shoot that's more than a few miles from home (and bathroom)!

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11 hours ago, pengu1n said:

Or figure to switch to Panasonic, which will use my m4/3 lenses?

 

IIRC, Panasonic cameras rely on image stabilization in the lens, while Olympus cameras have it in the body. If that's the case, Olympus lenses, while they would fit on Panasonic cameras, wouldn't have stabilization. I have gone the other way - using Panasonic lenses in my Olympus camera - but I will watch for bargains on another Olympus camera body as well as on Zuiko lenses.

 

As it happens, I've recently purchased a Panasonic camera, but it's a pocket superzoom, a DC-S Z80. It's certainly compact, but surprisingly heavy for its size.

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I had an Olympus eM5 Mk II. I never really liked the system and now hate the camera shop that pushed it so hard. The only advantage the system had for me was cheaper gear, but at the cost of not enjoying having it. I moved to the Sony a6400 which is night and day better. I lose overall zoom, but it is crop factor zoom anyway. IBIS is good for certain purposes, but I would speculate only 10% of my shots ever required it. Of those, most of them could have been captured with better autofocus and technique.

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  • 4 months later...

Olympus gear,,, have use since 1976.... OM1   with Zuiko Lenses   200,  50 & 24

 

Great camera used it until 2010 and now use  E-30  with Zuiko lens 9-18  70-300 &  18- 180

 

It the moment it still serve me well... and are happy with the output

 

Do a bit of editing  with elements 2019 as still on windows 7

 

So my association with Olympus has been 44 years...

 

What next I do not know.......  Don.

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6 hours ago, getting older slowly said:

Olympus gear,,, have use since 1976.... OM1   with Zuiko Lenses   200,  50 & 24

 

Great camera used it until 2010 and now use  E-30  with Zuiko lens 9-18  70-300 &  18- 180

 

It the moment it still serve me well... and are happy with the output

 

Do a bit of editing  with elements 2019 as still on windows 7

 

So my association with Olympus has been 44 years...

 

What next I do not know.......  Don.

If you discover you need a new body [Sudden attack of Gear Acquisition Syndrome] you can use you old lenses on the several current bodies [with a 4/3 to micro 4/3 mount adapter] with the same, or slightly better autofocus speed. Both the EM5 mark 3 and EM1 mark 2 are selling new for under $1k in the US - less for refurb or used.

The electronic viewfinder is larger, brighter than the SLR viewfinder, plus the rest of the electronics benefit from 12 years or so advancement over the 4/3 cameras.

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