14/10/14 – Camera Technology & Where It’s Going – Barry Griffin

Following the AGM, Barry Griffin of Canon gave a very interesting and informative talk about the world of camera technology and where it is going. Barry was very knowledgeable and the presentation, although detailed, was very easy to follow. Barry started by briefly explaining the history of Canon which interestingly started out being named Kwanon. During the talk it became apparent how quickly technology moves on and how the features on cameras tend to move down from professional cameras to consumer market cameras in quite a short time frame. It wasn’t that long ago that the first Canon digital camera cost many thousands of pounds  – and that only had a 1.3 megapixel sensor. It made us wonder where cameras will be in another 10 or 20 years.

IMG_5645 small xBarry explained why image sensor size is far more important for image quality than the number of megapixels which is frequently the lead item in marketing and advertising material, particularly in lower end products. Care is also required when comparing continuous frame rate specifications and the buyer should be aware whether or not the camera refocuses between shots or just ‘simply’ captures one image after another using the initial focus settings. Example pictures were shown that were taken using some extremely high ISO ratings. Such is the level of technology in a modern camera that unless the picture was studied through a high zoom level or by ‘pixel peeking’ then a good quality image can still be obtained. IMG_5646 small xAlthough the talk obviously focused on Canon’s range of products the general trends tend to be true for all of the major manufacturers. Having described present day camera technology Barry briefly talked about what the future holds including such features as having full control of the camera from a smart phone.

After the talk Barry invited club members to look at some cameras and lenses from the present Canon range. There was a huge range of cameras from ‘point and shoot’ models right up to professional models. There were also a number of lenses from Canons huge range of 80 lenses for the club members to look at over a cup of tea. At the same time Barry was more than happy to answer any questions from club members, whether about Canon products or general photographic matters.

Following the break member’s pictures from the quarterly theme of Commemoration were presented. As always, it was surprising the spread of picture subjects and ideas the quarterly results in.

The meeting was very well attended and everyone seemed to enjoy the evening.  Probably many of us came away with a wish list for a new Canon camera and/or lens – just in time for Christmas!!

Words by Dave Bourne