Talk:Micro Four Thirds system

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The Micro Four Thirds system (MFT) is an open standard created by Olympus and Panasonic, and announced on August 5, 2008,[1] for mirrorless interchangeable lens digital cameras and camcorders[2] design and development. However, unlike the preceding Four Thirds System, it is not an open standard.

Which is it? -- (talk) 23:23, 5 February 2012 (UTC)

possibly it *is* "open"? Just not as open as the previous standard (which I do know is true, but even MFT is more open than most other camera standards by relative standards). (talk) 07:45, 16 April 2013 (UTC)

Article subject[edit]

This page should be about micro-FT, NOT four thirds. CopyPasteing fourThirds page here means lots of misinformation, as those standards differ. --Hkultala (talk) 21:40, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

Please fix! I just came to this page to read about Micro Four Thirds and as far as I can see it's the same as FT's. Chopper Dave (talk)
Agreed. The "goods and bads" should probably be removed at all - as long as there are no working M4/3 platforms it's either guesswork or copy from 4/3. NVO (talk) 09:46, 12 August 2008 (UTC)
Not so simple. Most of the information about Four Thirds does apply to Micro Four Thirds; in fact, Micro Four Thirds is only a derivation of Four Thirds.
Perhaps one could merge Micro Four Thirds information into the original article?
Leandro GFC Dutra (talk) 23:26, 12 August 2008 (UTC)
At first glance the Advantages and Disadvantages sections are correct, except for the fact that the system is still vaporware. (Major disadvantage!) --RenniePet (talk) 13:47, 13 August 2008 (UTC)
Correct? The system is intended for compacts, then why compare it to Canikon DSLRs? Better compare it to Canon G. NVO (talk) 23:35, 13 August 2008 (UTC)
Time will tell. Micro Four Thirds is something in between DSLRs and compacts. But the fact that you can switch lenses, and presumably buy it because you want to switch lenses, seems to put it more in competition with DSLRs than with compacts.
It's a pretty exciting development, and it'll be interesting to see how much success they have with it. And if they have success, how Canon, Nikon, Sony, Samsung, et al will respond. --RenniePet (talk) 11:06, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, that is the problem with doing too much in an article about something that hasn;t been released yet. The Panasonic G1 has since been announced and the camera body is similar in size and shape to the entry level dSLRs (same width as a D40/60 for example). Also the price looks to be similar to an entry level dSLR. --NikOly (talk) 15:55, 27 September 2008 (UTC)
Where is the justification and facts to back up the statement that this format is an attempt to prevent backruptcy? Both Olympus and Panasonic are profitable companies. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Markrich (talkcontribs) 19:16, 17 August 2008 (UTC)

Should the statement "Reasonable depth of field (same as in Four Thirds DSLRs but more than in full frame cameras)" really be in the advantages section? Certainly a deeper DOF is of benefit for many types of subjects. But at the same time a shallower DOF can add to others. - AWriterWandering (talk) 03:59, 7 January 2009 (UTC)

Please don't expand the pro/con bullet points - people keep adding to them to the point where they are not bullet points anymore! Short and concise... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:59, 25 April 2009 (UTC)

Source from Olympus[edit]

Here are revelations from Ogawa Haruo of Olympus:

If someone with khowledge of Japanese could verify the English version - this one answers a lot of question (like the "4/3 is not an open standard" etc.). NVO (talk) 07:31, 14 August 2008 (UTC)


The listed disadvantages

Electronic viewfinder is noisy in low light Electronic viewfinder suffers from small lag making capturing fast moving subjects difficult

are of course correct, but have nothing to do with micro four thirds. It is the implementation with an EVF that has these disadvantages. Optical view finders will not have these problems. Maybe the section could be titled "Disadvantages of the G1? That should be made clear, imho. Thyl Engelhardt (talk) 11:20, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

Ajuk, please explain how the citation given supported the sentence "Electronic viewfinder is noisy in low light and has less resolution than the human eye", under the section "Disadvantages of Micro Four Thirds compared to DSLRs" - the citation doesn't mention viewfinders at all, let alone comparing DSLR optical viewfinders to EVF's..? Happypoems (talk) 18:07, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

Are you serious? The citation says the human eyes res is comparable to that of a large format camera, so do I need to find a source that shows that the res of the electronic viewfinder is less than that of a large format camera? I didn't think I did because it's so obvious. AJUK Talk!! 21:08, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
If the citation has nothing to do with Micro Four Thirds then using it would be original research. For example if you found a source claiming that all traffic tunnels are bad for driver's health, you can't go to Sydney Harbour Tunnel and state that it is bad for your health (you need to find a specific source). That is my understanding anyway.--Commander Keane (talk) 01:38, 2 September 2009 (UTC)
I agree; the statement needs a source; or do the work to find out what sources actually say about electronic viewfinder resolution issues, instead of synthesizing novel statements from such sources (see WP:SYN). Dicklyon (talk) 06:06, 2 September 2009 (UTC)

Disadvantages of Micro Four Thirds compared to DSLRs[edit]

"Due to the absence of a mirror and prism mechanism, there is no ability to use a through-the-lens optical viewfinder. The electronic viewfinder or a separate optical viewfinder must be used instead"

This actually doesn't say anything worthwhile. It's basically saying the disadvantage of not being an SLR camera, is that it's not an SLR camera. It's like saying the disadvantage compared to film cameras is "There is no ability to load, advance, and expose film. Digital media must be used to stored image data instead." There's --Rob (talk) 16:35, 27 March 2010 (UTC)

Rebuttal: It's still a disadvantage, whether it is intrinsic to the design or not, and hence deserves to be mentioned. Consider two points: if one were to create a gasoline-powered kettle, you'd consider the fact that it ran on gasoline to be a disadvantage, even though it would be intrinsic to its design. Equally, if you can't consider the lack of a viewfinder in a Micro Four Thirds camera a disadvantage, then you can't consider size and weight in a regular DSLR to be a disadvantage either, because they're intrinsic to the design of an SLR. All these points of view would be illogical, and would only be taken by somebody wanting to minimize the disadvantages of a particular product. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:42, 23 April 2010 (UTC)

It is a genuine disadvantage that people genuinely do consider when comparing different camera systems, and I think it should be reinstated. -- Boing! said Zebedee 10:20, 26 April 2010 (UTC)
I'm not opposed to mentioning inherent advantages/disadvantages. Saying "An apple is not an orange" is not disadvantage of an apple. Saying "An apple has less Vitamin C than an organge" would be for some people. There are disadvantages *AND* advantages from not having a through-the-lens optical viewfinder, and those should be mentioned. But not having a through-the-lens optical viewfinder in and of itself, is not an advantage or disadvantage (but does point to advantages/disadvantages). --Rob (talk) 11:12, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

"Theoretically, changing lenses can expose the sensor to more dust in a "mirrorless" camera design, compared to DSLRs that have both a mirror and a closed shutter protecting the sensor. Mirrorless cameras have dust-removal systems which attempt to minimize the impact of this problem." I think that it is not true, because MFT have also closed shutter protecting the sensor.-- (talk) 10:41, 29 May 2013 (UTC)

Sorry but you are mistaken. The sensor is exposed when changing lenses. - Takeaway (talk) 12:56, 17 July 2013 (UTC)

Advantages of Micro Four Thirds over DSLR cameras[edit]

"Shorter flange-focal distance means that practically all manual lenses can be adapted for use"

This is not exactly true. You really need to consider the flange-focal distance as a fraction of the sensor diagonal. So, it isn't really possible to adapt a normal focal length lens (e.g. 20mm to 25mm) unless it is a retrofocus wide angle.

Tyrerj (talk) 02:55, 27 April 2010 (UTC)

Proposal to move "advantages of an electronic viewfinder (EVF) to a separate article[edit]

All mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras use an EVF, so how about moving this to a separate article? (Michael Barkowski (talk) 15:01, 14 October 2011 (UTC))

Also, all the advantages mentioned also exist with a DSLR's live view - this section feels very biased (talk) 21:22, 11 May 2014 (UTC)

Error in Common Compact Camera Sensor Size[edit]

Most of the common compact cameras have a sensor size of 1/2.3 and not 1/2.5. This needs to be corrected in the write-up as well as on the diagram comparing the various sensor sizes. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Akt1000 (talkcontribs) 04:32, 28 January 2012 (UTC)

Contradictory introduction?[edit]

"The Micro Four Thirds system (MFT) is an open standard created by Olympus and Panasonic, and announced on August 5, 2008,[1] for mirrorless interchangeable lens digital cameras and camcorders[2] design and development. However, unlike the preceding Four Thirds System, it is not an open standard."

Is it an open standard or isn't it? If it currently isn't then the opening should read more along the lines of an adaptation of the originally open standard or it needs to be rewritten altogether. Was the original FTS open or closed? If it was an open standard then the MFT would be like the preceding FTS. If the original FTS wasn't an open standard then the last sentence could be removed or changed to read more along the lines of "Unlike the original FTS, MFT is an open standard."

As it stands currently, the statement is indicating first it is an open standard and then secondly it isn't an open standard. — Preceding unsigned comment added by RevJynxed (talkcontribs) 22:00, 2 February 2012 (UTC)

I would very much like to see any proof that MFT is not an open standard. Can't find any. --Meyer-Konstanz (talk) 14:44, 18 January 2013 (UTC)

35mm equivalent aperture[edit]

The lens tables contained a column "35mm EFL and equivalent aperture". It's not clear that either are helpful.

Especially with a crop factor of 2, it's relatively trivial to calculate the equivalent 35mm focal lengths, and the page is full of references to this ratio. Considering that there are almost no 35mm cameras in use any more, it would make more sense to refer to fields of view. I'm leaving that there for the time being, but I think it should go.

What definitely had to go was the equivalent aperture. It's just plain wrong, no matter how you look at it:

  • If we're talking about exposure, the aperture doesn't change. An f/2.8 lens is still an f/2.8 lens.
  • If we're talking about depth of field, it's still wrong. A 25 mm lens at f/8 has the same depth of field as a 50 mm lens at f/32.

Either way, suggesting without explanation that there's an equivalent aperture is also misleading, so I've removed it. Groogle (talk) 01:53, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

Sorry but this is just plain wrong: "Considering that there are almost no 35mm cameras in use any more", regards a full frame digital and occasional film shooter. -- (talk) 12:58, 25 January 2014 (UTC)
Please don't remove this factual information from the article anymore. For visualizing depth of field, the equivalent aperture with the equivalent focal length is crucial. 35mm systems are the most widespread, it's the de facto benchmark. Equivalent aperture is also crucial for visualizing the signal to noise ratio of a image taken at given ISO, be it whatever. It's the size and area of the aperture that dictates these, both the depth of field and the signal to noise ratio. Simple, irrefutable mathematics.
Also, user (Groogle) who first removed the information from the article has vested interest in the article, as he seems to be a Micro Four thirds user. PS. your calculations are wrong, 25mm f/8 and 50mm f/32 do not have same depth of field as the latter system has a smaller aperture (~3mm vs ~1.5mm). This miscommunication wouldn't happened if you've just read what the article said before deleting parts of it.
Best regards, (talk) 00:10, 16 January 2016 (UTC)
Sorry, almost everything you said is incorrect. Apertures have various properties, most notably the effect on exposure. And f/4 on MFT provides the same exposure as f/4 on full frame or any other sensor format. The table as it was suggested differently. And it's absurd to talk of "vested interests". This is plain physics. Yes, I have an MFT camera. I also have full frame and APS-C cameras. How do you interpret that?
Regarding 35 mm cameras, I was referring to the term. I stand by that statement. 35 mm are film cameras, and the term could confuse. Full frame are not 35 mm cameras, though the sensor format is (almost) the same. The term has been changed, and I can accept that.
Regarding depth of field. No, sorry, 25 mm f/8 and 50 mm f/32 do have the same depth of field. It doesn't depend only on absolute aperture. Read the Depth of field article or try an online depth of field calculator of your choice. There's one here.
Regarding signal-to-noise ratio, many factors are involved, but aperture isn't one of them. Sensor resolution is one of them. And modern cameras with the same sensor size and resolution have better signal-to-noise ratios than older models of the same kind and by the same manufacturer. This isn't simple, irrefutabe mathematics: it's a simple, unsubstantiated and refutable claim that is irrelevant to this discussion.
The table has now changed, and the confusion that I was addressing is not there. But the "equivalent exposure index" is confusing in the extreme—it doesn't explain that this relates to the aperture in the previous column—and bears little relationship with practice. Normally you don't change ISO rating to compensate for aperture. In general, the whole section needs rewriting for clarity. It seems that this is a sensitive area for some people. But I most certainly reserve the right to remove incorrect information. Groogle (talk) 00:20, 23 May 2016 (UTC)
Dear all ! I do not know what you have entered in the dialog of the web site computing the depth of field, but according to optical laws and according to this web site MFT with 25 mm/8 has the very same depth of field (and by the way the very same relative circle of confusion and relative diffraction-limitation (related to the image size)) than full-frame with 50 mm/16 (full-stop)
Furthermore, we are living in a digital world, where you (or the camera firmware) easily can adjust ISO speed levels. And for sure it is an advantage of a large sensor that it can be operated with low ISO speed such as ISO 100 or even ISO 50. However, the only and really interesting optical parameters are the angle of view and the aperture width (= f / k). And if you have the same angle of view and the same aperture width in different camera systems, you will get the same pictures, and you have to adjust higher ISO speeds using larger image sensors in order to get the same level of image stabilisation and motion blur (i.e. the same shutter speed). Again: it is a real advantage of full-frame cameras that you can operate at ISO 100, since at MFT cameras you would have to adjust to ISO 25 in order to get the same pictures (with the same amount of light and the same noise level assuming the same level of image sensor quality). However, most MFT photographers seem to be happy with ISO 400 shots today... --Bautsch (talk) 16:52, 21 July 2016 (UTC)

Where's Sony?[edit]

There's a lot of Sony Micro Four Thirds camera out in the market. This article needs to be updated. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:23, 3 July 2014 (UTC)

Sony do NOT make Micro Four Thirds cameras -- (talk) 15:58, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

Popularity with adapted/legacy lenses[edit]

Removed "A possible advantage for wildlife shooters and birders in particular lies with the fact that system's 2x crop factor means that old 35mm telephoto lenses possess the same crop factor as extreme telephotos. This does not, however, mean that the lenses' focal length is doubled or that the magnification power increases: a 200mm zoom lens for 35mm does not become a 400mm zoom lens when used with Micro Four-Thirds; rather, the crop factor for the 200mm lens when used with Micro Four-Thirds is the same as that of a 400mm lens." as I can think of no obvious advantage of m43 crop factor to wildlife/birder shooters, but rather suspect the original author conflated FOV with Focal Length, which was later corrected, leaving a nonsensical bullet point. Lewisfrancis (talk) 16:46, 18 June 2015 (UTC

Replaced above with "Adapted lenses retain their native focal lengths but have a doubled field of view; ie. an adapted 50mm lens will still be a 50mm lens in terms of focal length but will have a 100mm field of view due to the Micro Four Thirds System 2x crop factor". Lewisfrancis (talk) 17:01, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Perhaps it would be appropriate for someone to write a few sentences about the "speedbooster" adapters that contain optics that reduce the effective focal length, increase the effective f-number, so that the lens has the same field of view and effective aperture (i.e., same degree of blurring for objects not in the focal plane) as it would on a full frame camera. In other words, it allows you to take the same pictures that you would with that lens on its native mount. I have never used a "speedbooster" myself; it would be better to leave the writing to someone who has used one. Metabones is one maker of speedbooster adapters; there might be others. Pciszek (talk) 15:39, 13 March 2016 (UTC)

Price comparisons[edit]

The advantage of the shorter flange distance was illustrated with this comment:

Compare the Olympus 4/3 7–14mm f/4 zoom (approximately $1800), with the lumix micro 4/3 7–14mm F/4 lens (approximately $800).

Apart from the fact that prices change (currently the Oly 7/14 retails for $1,585), there's now a micro Four thirds 7/14 from Olympus, which is a better comparison. It retails for $1,199. Still proves the point, right? But then there are 9/18 mm lenses, which cost $499 (FT) and $599 (mFT). There are too many other factors involved for such a comparison to be valid. So I've left the (valid) stateent and removed the specific comparison. Groogle (talk) 03:36, 24 May 2016 (UTC)