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| p.1 #8 · Mirrorless/"rangefinder-style"/etc. forum? |
About "rangefinder style" - no term works perfectly for these new cameras, and I've seen fine arguments for about a half dozen or more.
Technically - to the extent that it matters - a "rangefinder" camera uses a (surprise!) rangefinder to assist with focus. This typically superimposes to incoming images from different points on the front of the camera and as you focus one shifts position, and when they are perfectly superimposed you have focused correctly. More or less.
Some folks are adamant that the term "rangefinder" should not be applied to newer digital cameras that otherwise try to somewhat build on the legacy of rangefinder film cameras. I understand their (slightly geeky and perhaps a bit obsessive) point. There are at least a couple of worthy counterarguments, whether or not you chose to accept them in the end:
1. While these cameras do not use the particular range-finding mechanism of the film rangefinder cameras, they do "find ranges" in an alternate manner.
2. In addition, in many cases the goal of the newer cameras is to provide the functionality of those older rangefinder film cameras but using newer digital technologies. So, in functional terms, they (can) end up being used in much the same way. In fact, lots of folks who used film rangefinder cameras and loved them are looking to precisely this sort of digital camera as a more modern replacement for their film rangefinder cameras.
3. While boundaries can be a bit fuzzy, the term "rangefinder" has a broader but well known meaning that goes beyond the particular mechanism of focusing. This includes: smaller (generally) size, no pentaprism, able to use small-ish lenses, potentially very high image quality, suitable for certain types of on-the-go shooting such as street photography and more.
So, while I know about EVIL, EVF (sometimes), and mirrorless and other terms for these cameras, both "rangefinder style" and "digital rangefinder" also work and I think we all know what the terms refer to and understand that both the terms and the cameras themselves tend to reflect the heritage of film rangefinders.
In any case, I sort of feel that what we call these cameras is a pretty peripheral issue at this point. (Though I suppose someone would have to come up with a forum name. Glad its not me! ;-)