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Ricoh Executives Think Mirrorless Users Will Return to DSLRs in One or Two Years

Ricoh Executives Think Mirrorless Users Will Return to DSLRs in One or Two Years

As the market continues to swing towards mirrorless cameras, most people see it as a sign that DSLRs are on their way out. However, one camera company seems to believe that the mirrorless hype will be short-lived, with users flocking back to DSLRs in the near-future.

In a recent interview with Imaging Resource, Ricoh's Hiroki Sugahara (General Manager of the Marketing Communication Department, Global Sales and Marketing Center, Smart Vision Business Unit) discussed how mirrorless has affected DSLR sales and what he thinks of the future:

Currently, mirrorless is a newcomer, so of course, many users are very interested in the new systems; they want to use [them]. But after one or two years, some users who changed their system from DSLR to mirrorless [will] come back to the DSLR again.

Expanding on that, Sugahara said:

Because as I said before, each system has its own benefits or appealing points. The mirrorless camera is very convenient to shoot, because users can [see the] image before shooting. But, I believe the DSLR has its own appealing point, because users can create their own image from the optical viewfinder. People can see the beautiful image through the optical viewfinder, and then think how they can create their pictures — for example, exposure level setting, or white balance, or ISO — and then imagine how they can get [the photo they want]... So, the DSLR market is currently decreasing a little bit, but one year or two years or three years later, it will [start] getting higher.

Personally, I'm a bit flummoxed by this. While there is certainly a portion of photographers who are DSLR holdouts and don't see the need to switch to mirrorless, I have a hard time believing that any substantial fraction of those who are shooting mirrorless will choose to return to DSLRs. Furthermore, I find Sugahara's reasoning less than convincing. EVFs are getting better and better, and saying that people would prefer to guess at their exposures rather than see if they're correct in real-time seems a bit illogical. It's a shame, as I think Ricoh makes some great cameras; I loved the K-1 when I reviewed it and would have welcomed seeing those innovations in a mirrorless camera, but it doesn't sound like we will. 

What are your thoughts?

Alex Cooke's picture

Alex Cooke is a Cleveland-based portrait, events, and landscape photographer. He holds an M.S. in Applied Mathematics and a doctorate in Music Composition. He is also an avid equestrian.

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Mirrorless is awesome and it's going to be unstoppable.

Downvoted by a Ricoh lover! Bwahahahhaahahahaa

I saw no reason to downvote your original post….

…Until I saw this one. 😂🤣😃😁

I remember back in 1994 when Ricoh said that autofocus was just a gimmick that wouldn't catch on.

I suspect Ricoh may be trying to wiggle out of the camera business.

Battery life?

I use both d850 and a7r3 and I don't see any advantages of d850 in battery life

Optical Viewfinder?

Battery life on modern MILC's is so long that this is essentially a non-issue at this point.

Mirrorless is here to stay but nothing is preventing companies from creating a hybrid system where they could use a transparent high res LCD for the EVF that will basically overlay your field of view. It could be full time EVF or partly where it may only overlay certain pixels for peeking information or highlights. Map a button to toggle on/off for manual focusing in certain situations. This would use older mounts because you still need the mirror. Live view modes won't be quite as good but it's a middle ground for those not willing to move forward or just don't need to. I'm actually really surprised this hasn't been tried yet. Probably cheaper to go straight mirrorless though.

We go everywhere to a solution with less moving parts. Once the processors and other components will be made in scale, and will perform, we will have clear advantage in cost. For now though the dim EVF's in the sun are horrible, and they flare out too much in the dark. Its a zoo (Sony 7 III, Canon R, they are both not satisfactory to my eyes, but the progress is obvious.) And what is stunning, the mechanical operations in a DSLR are seemingly more responsive than these all-electronic solutions. For now. Smart man say "only fools rush in." I am sticking with my trusty gear and keep looking.

I find my Z7 plenty responsive. YMMV

Ricoh Executives Think Netflix Users Will Return to DVD's in One or Two Years

I've often thought about returning to horse-and-buggy travel after trying out a vehicle powered by an internal combustion engine.

😄 😄 😄

I have given up photography. I chisel what I see into a rock. All these innovations baffle me.

It's not just Ricoh, I lived in Japan for a bit. Covering your eyes and believing no one can see you is not uncommon there.

I’m sure there are people out there who switched to mirrorless who realized they preferred optical viewfinders. Probably not many. I’ve tried them and just simply don’t care for them. The resolution is very good, but staring at a screen an inch away from my eyes for long periods of time, as detailed as it is, wears my eyes out and gives me a headache. I guess VR gaming is out for me too.

At the end of the day it’s just a framing tool, step one in a two step process (unless you only do straight out-of-camera jpegs, but even the small size prevents you from truly seeing what you’re getting).

People will choose what they want via their likes and dislikes and their needs. Whatever it is - it is.

Jerome I agree with you. I had thought of the same thing. I personally don't like the digital viewfinder. I love my K1 Mk11. I think a hybrid system would be the next logical step for Pentax. You never know they may be working on that and not saying anything just to throw everybody off. What is their options? I believe they will keep advancing in that direction making rugged quality cameras that people love.

At this point, given their inability to even maintain a decent pace in their DSLR system development, I think Pentax might be approaching the end of their rope as a brand.

Hoping that people come back to DSLR (and choose Pentax when they do) in significant numbers is a bit far fetched. Their best option might be to throw their hat in the ring with the L-Mount Alliance to make up for their lack of resources or to go the MFT route for the same reason. I don't see them being able to hack it in the MILC arena on their own with a proprietary mount nor do I see DSLR sales carrying the brand in the longterm.

«…their inability to even maintain a decent pace in their DSLR system development….»
Why I keep hearing things like this is beyond me. When I speak of all the Pentax/Ricoh innovations, they get dismissed as “gimmicks,” …until someone else implements them.

IBIS was so inferior to in-lens stabilization, until Sony started using it. Then everyone else wanted to know when Canon and Nikon were going to get onboard.

In-camera compositing was so pointless. “Why do it camera with only four frames (in one file, in a two-second process), wasting precious computing resources, when we can easily do it in half an hour in Photoshop with twenty frames (in as many files)?”

Same with PixelShift, until Olympus and Hasselblad offered similar technology. …“Except Pentax did it wrong. Their 24Mpx sensor only gives a 24Mpx image. It ought to be 96Mpx, since four images are combined!” Nope. Pentax did it right. No antialiasing, since every pixel has full colour and full intensity information, and their is no OLPF to murky things up.

Pentaxians know that their still photography cameras are well developed for still photography. They do not care that they don't have the ability to make motion pictures in UHD, 60p, slow-mo, 192-bit AAC surround, Dolby Atmos, with auto-gimbal, self-levitating, wireless tripod built-in.

«…their lack of resources….»
If you are referring to their lack of a lens fabrication plant, since Hoya kept it in the sale of Pentax to Ricoh, it is somewhat of a valid point. However,Pentax has already partnered with Tamron, (which had bought Bronica, to acquire their lens fabrication facilities). They need no further partnership. The only thing which can aid them now, is building their own lens fabrication plant, or acquiring a company which already has one.

( ASIDE: Sony lenses are also made by the company where it holds a 20+ % stock shares).

If you are referring to the allegation of lack of lenses, then that is laughable. Having only one 70-200 f/2.8 lens, versus three of them (Nikon) or four of them, (Canon), does not make it a less desirable lens lineup. Some argue that the availability of less expensive third-party lenses makes the competition look better, but Pentax lenses are priced closer to the third-party options, than the ridiculously priced CaNikOny OEM choices.

So either case, not a hurdle worth worrying about.

«…MILC arena… with a proprietary mount….»
Let's see…. Sony, with the A-mount, & E-mount, Nikon & Canon with their two new mounts, and Olympus (still pictures) went MFT with Panasonic (motion pictures). All other motion picture cameras have proprietary mounts. No real still picture company but for Leica (niche) has gone with the L-mount.

Seems to be another non-issue. Besides, Pentax already went mirrorless with the K-mount not so long ago, (although they went with a designer camera, and not a photographer camera, and did it wrong).

The Pentax brand is defined as a great still photographer's tool, with innovations for the still photographer; as rugged as they are, and geared towards the craft, by photographers. …Except for that one designer piece of garbage. Never let a fashion designer make a camera. …Or any sophisticated piece of advanced technological tool, for that matter.

You have to be kidding about lens selection. How long did it take to get the 50 1.4 out and how long have they been talking about the 85 1.4?

Pentax lacks 800/5.6, 600/4, 500/4, 400/2.8. No tilt shift lenses no 1.2 lenses, two old macro lenses they don't offer a 15-30 24-70 or 70-200 in F4 models like Canon and Nikon do for the people who don't need 2.8 versions.

I shot Pentax for years and they make good bodies they just don't have lenses for them and don't have the ability to put out lenses to compete with Canon and Nikon selection. Just looking at B&H Pentax has 16 FF lenses and Canon has 69 available in EF mount.

«…You have to be kidding about lens selection.…»

«…How long did it take to get the 50 1.4 out….»
You mean the SMC Pentax-FA 50mm F1.4 since 1991-to present?
Unless you mean the SMC Pentax-F 50mm F1.4 manufactured from 1987-1991.
Of course you might mean the SMC Pentax-A 50mm F1.4 produced from 1984-1989.
I doubt that you meant the SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.4 from 1977-1984, despite how wonderful it was….
…But you could not possibly mean the SMC Pentax-A 50mm F1.2 from 1984-2004, because it is not an f/1.4 lens.
Ah! I got it. You think that the HD Pentax-D FA* 50mm F1.4 SDM AW which they released in 2018 is their first 50mm f/1.4. Yeah, NO!

«…talking about the 85 1.4?…»
You mean the SMC Pentax-FA* 85mm F1.4 [IF], manufactured from 1992-2004?
Or did you mean the SMC Pentax-A* 85mm F1.4 from 1984-1989?
Ah! You mean the HD Pentax-D FA* 85mm f/1.4, due out this year. Funny, but another poster was just (pointlessly) arguing that Pentax does NOT update their lenses.

But all of that is absolutely irrelevant. We will get back to why.

«…Pentax lacks…. No tilt shift lenses no 1.2 lenses.…»
Do you really want to do this?

Canon lacks:
70mm, 77mm, 105mm, 560mm
Nikon lacks:
70mm, 77mm, 90mm, 100mm, 560mm.

For sports and wildlife, Pentax has, for their 8.3fps cameras, a
450mm equivalent f/4, 840mm equivalent f/5.6, 300mm equivalent f/2.8, and a 225-675mm equivalent f/4.5-5,6, and therefore does not need the 800/5.6, 600/4, 500/4, nor the 400/2.8.

Additionally, although most were designed for the D-type cameras in mind, they all were engineered to produce an F-type image circle, and can be used un-cropped on the K-1 as 300mm f/4, 560mm f/5.6, 200mm f/2.8, and a 150-450 f/4.5-5.6 (actually designed for F-type).

As for f/1.2 lenses, I do not hear Pentaxians crying over a fraction of a stop. As for the niche tilt-shift lenses, Pentax has those available for their niche medium format bodies. Which lenses does Canon and Nikon have for their medium format.… Opps! My bad.

«…a 15-30 24-70 or 70-200 in F4 models like Canon and Nikon do for the people who don't need 2.8 versions.…»
For people who can’t afford the Canon/Nikon Zoom trinity (f/2.8), Pentax has the f/2.8 zoom trinity at an affordable price.

Canon f/4 series US$5,200
Nikon f/4 series US$4,900 [*No f/4 24-70]
Pentax zoom trinity US$4,400

Oh! Look at that!!! …And that is why Pentax does not have an f/4 option!

«…Canon has 69 available in EF mount.»
Er,… that was my point.

Let me elaborate and elucidate the point.
Autofocus → Now we are down to 61.
IS → Now we are down to 28.
“L” series → now we are down to 21. (That may not be fair, so let us put that back)
We still have two 300mm, 400mm, & 600mm. Now we are down to 18 (25).
We still have four 70-200mm. Now we are down to 15 (22).
Putting the STM line back in,…
We have three 400mm, (plus two 300mm & 600mm) so we drop to 24.
We have two 24-105. Now we have 23.
We still have four 70-200. Now we have 20.
Three 70-300. Now we have 18.
…And only one macro.

In all fairness, Pentax has four duplicates, (five, IF you include the Macro optimized 50mm, which I do not count as a duplicate).
So 15 Canon lenses (one macro), vs 12 Pentax lenses (two macro), all with AF and IBIS.
On the other hand, Canon has a 24mm, 28mm, and 35mm prime, (which may possibly be seen as a close grouping), and several 24-70mm, 28-105mm, 28-300mm, 70-200mm, 70-300mm, (and 100-400mm), with several overlaps. Pentax has only one superzoom overlap of 28-105mm. (and 150-450mm).

All in all, there is NO LENS which Canon has, that Pentaxians are “missing” or needing. We do not need 69 options of just 15 lenses.

Um, yeah. Nobody's ever gonna read all that.


Canon really has only 15 lenses, and the Pentax lineup fills in all the gaps.

Your apology for Pentax is so ridiculous that I can't even take you seriously. I'm not going to say that Pentax makes bad cameras because they don't. Their development pace, however, is far below any of the major industry players. Other companies having multiple versions of the same focal length is actually important because it's a sign that those companies are refreshing their optics and improving them. It's actually pretty bad for Pentax to NOT to have the resources to go back and update their optics.

As it stands, a Pentax probably wouldn't even crack the top 15 DSLR's out there despite all of the innovation you speak of. Innovation can be great, but it's pretty useless if it's not translating to increased market share. It's even worse if other companies are doing a better job marketing your own technology than you. That's pretty much where Pentax is at.

They might have once been a behemoth decades ago, but they're a shell of their former self now and they're barely able to keep up, much less give the rest of the field any real competition. I'm sorry that you still think that Pentax is actually a notable force in the modern camera market. They're just not. There's a reason you see articles written about Canon, Nikon, Sony, Fuji, Panasonic, Olympus, and pretty much everyone else while you barely see anything about Pentax. Those other companies are actually developing and releasing new products in the market. Pentax, for the most part, is just sitting there and trying to ride a once great name.

«…apology for Pentax…»
If that is what you thought that was, you missed the point.

«…it's a sign that those companies are refreshing their optics and improving them.»
Except when one considers the quality of the Pentax kit lenses vs the Canon/Nikon kit lenses, or consider the quality of the Pentax non-kit lenses vs the competition non-kit lenses, then it becomes a non-argument.

Canon has 6 currently selling 24-70mm lenses:
Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM (US$1,350)
Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM (US$2,100)
Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III USM (US$2,100)
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM (US$650)
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM (US$1,200)
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS II USM (US$1,300)
Canon Flagship camera’s (6D II) kit lens is a 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM

This does not reflect, “refreshing their optics.” If it did, at the very least, the first, second, and fifth options would NOT be there. I would argue against the sixth option, and the fourth would only be entry level.

Nikon has 2 currently selling 24-70mm lenses:
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/4G ED VR (US$1,400)
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR (US$2,800)
Nikon Flagship camera’s (D850) kit lens is a 24-120mm f/4G ED VR
Not bad at all. …But the entry level is a bit pricey.

Pentax has one:
Pentax HD PENTAX D FA* 70-200mm f/2.8 ED DC AW (US$1,800)
Pentax Flagship camera’s (K-1 II) kit lens is a 28-105mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR

So there is no clear advantage to the six options which Canon gives, versus the two of Nikon, or the one of Pentax.

«…that you still think that Pentax is …a notable force in the modern camera market.»
Never said that. Sorry that that frightens you. (I know,… you never said that).

«…and pretty much everyone else…»
Who?!? Oh! You must mean the one rangefinder and the other medium format besides Pentax. Yeah. I hear more about the Pentax K-mount DSLRs than those two.

But I am done with you. You don’t seem to like facts, preferring hype. I have to respond to someone else, then get to work.

"Quality of optics"? Show me the MTF charts. Hell, show me COMPARISONS between Canikon's latest lenses and their dated Pentax equivalents. Let's see how great those optics and coatings are. Also, who the hell cares about "kit lenses"? How about we compare the lenses that actually matter (the professional ones)?

One other medium format? Hasselblad, Phase One, and Fuji all produce medium format cameras and you hear about all of them more than Pentax because unlike Pentax, they're actually relevant in the industry.

Are you seriously comparing the Pentax K-1 II to the Nikon D850? You're delusional if you think they're anywhere near the same level.

Good for you to be done with me because you're a clown. GTFOOH and go do your work because you fail at comment threads. If there's someone who drank the kool-aid hard here, it's definitely not me.

And you are someone whose arguments boil down to not doing your own homework, and ad hominem attacks. Therefore, rather than pointing you to the independent review and the publicly available MTF charts, (or mentioning that I never really compared the kit lenses), I will just declare you the winner and ignore your future posts.

Facts, physics and mathematics always trumps insults in my book.

I thought you were done, clown. Go play with you Pentax with the other "Pentaxians" (LOL) still living in the 80's.

And yet Pentax--who were even first with the instant-return mirror, TTL metering, and multi-coated lenses--have never been able to capitalize on their innovations to be anything better than an "also-ran" in the business.

«…have never been able to capitalize on their innovations.…»
How quickly we forget.

Pentax was on the high horse all the way until the digital era. When everyone was jumping into the DSLR, Pentax waited....

...And when they did jump in, what a jump it was! They did not enter until sensors had hit the 6Mpx range, (because Pentax don't make toys), and had more features for pros than most others. (I did not even consider going digital myself until cameras went 16Mpx. My first real consideration for a digital camera was the K-5).

This late entry into the digital era had caused Pentax to lose a great deal of the market. Their next failure was when Hoya bought them, and raised prices to CanKon level. That is what had caused a mass exodus from the brand, almost killing it.

Ricoh buying them has been a revival, but they had two problems. (1) Hoya bought Pentax for their lens fabrication facilities, and kept that in the sale. (2) Pentax/Ricoh made a deal with Tamrom to fabricate their lenses, but the largest shareholder of Tamron is a competing camera manufacturer.

This means that although Ricoh can develop cameras at whatever rate they want, but lens release cycles are not entirely under their control.

Yet, their base has grown since they were purchased from Hoya.

Follow the facts. They are no longer the market (sales) leader they once were, but they are still inovators, and yes, they were once the number one worldwide. Your claim of, "never been able," and, "also ran" are laughable.

Pentax/Ricoh remains an "also ran," not a medal winner.

That is like saying that Donald Quarry is an “also-ran." Muhammed Ali is an "also ran.” Shirley Bassey is an “also ran."

Pentax defined as era. They formed the modern SLR. They continue to bring innovation to the industry. They were the first SLR company to make total sales of 1,000,000. They were the first to make 10,000,000.

Low sales today, after the Hoya debacle, does not, cannot, take away their medals, anymore than Brian Lara can make Garfield Sobers any less great.

Ricoh you wild 😂

And there we have Ricoh in a nutshell.

I believe this fellow was a Kodak Exec, or may he worked for the railroad.

This digital thing is just a fad. You’ll come crawling back eventually, begging for Kodachrome.

Mirrorless is great for vlogger or video, i still shooting with dslr, i like the optical finder its bright and has no motion delay, i can manual focus very detail stuff in optical finder, those 1080 60fps screen just cant compare, i like the real shutter sound when you shooting for living people respect more

Mirrorless lens mostly are larger heavy and more expensive

dslr and lens in second hand market are very cheap, i can get a full frame nikond700 or nikond610 just $500 and these last forever

Which DSLR do you shoot with? Considering you think the OVF is easier than an EVF I'm very curious to know, Considering i shoot pretty much exclusively manual and did so with my DSLR as well with the Zeiss ZF lineup.

What kind of work do you shoot?

Iam a poor photographer, I shoot with 2 d300 and 2 d700, i shoot all kind of event, singer performance, ballet performance, group photos sometime food photography. Optical view finder has no motion delay, no blurring, no blackout with strobe, combined with large aperture lens i can see through darkness with OVF

I been shooting full manual since i got my fm2 in the 90s, as iam getting older sometime i will use af as it has better tracking result then my hands

Considering I 'v shoot with the D2X, D3 fully manual with OVF there really isn't any benefits for that kind of shooting you do in terms of precision for MF. In any case, today's EVF will be brighter and give you more precision for mf. You might not like them, and that's fine. But there simply is no argument for an OVF from the cameras you use that they would be more precise for MF.

As for strobes and blackout, could you give me a scenario where that would be a problem? I shoot a lot with strobes, mostly food, portraits, moco, etc and high speed. I've yet to come up with a scenario where I need to have full visibility when the flash goes off. I also very much doubt most people can see thru the OVF when the flash triggers..:-)

When shooting flash with OVF, the photographer does not see the flash, (as the mirror is up when it fires). With EVF, the sensor sees the flash, and, it may occasionally, produce a momentary whiteout condition, resulting in the photographer's eyes seeing white, followed by a retina rod-recovery from darkness.

This is especially noticed when using flash in lowlight situations, (as opposed to a fill-flash situation in brighter light).

Okay, so that debunks the strobe blackout issue completely if anything it's the opposite OVF lift the mirror and the EVF let you "see" the flash. My point is it's a stupid argument, to begin with...

It is not debunked. It is a real thing. It is biology. You never had a light come on and off in a dark room before? The rods on the retina do not adjust well to sudden brightness. When that happens, they stop responding to low-light levels momentarily, then gradually ‘re-acclimatize’ to the low-light.

With an OVF, the photographer's eyes does not see the flash, and remains acclimated. With an OVF, if the EVF does not have "blackout”, then the flash-lit scene will be seen in the EVF, (depending on is refresh rate, etc.), and brighten the scene. The rods on the retina will get saturated, and stop responding to low-light, making the EVF appear darker than the pre-flash scene, and will slowly get acclimated again.

If one is taking several flash images, such as in a fast-paced fashion shoot, this can become a serious blackout issue.

So let me get this straight, with your reasoning anyone who shoots with strobes (I'm referring to studio strobes off camera) would be getting blackouts due to the burst of light regardless if they look thru the EVF or not. Only by peeling your eyes thru the OVF can you avoid this.

This is of course not the case, I shoot moco scenes with flash sequence sometimes up to 700 flashes with 1-2 seconds apart, this 1200-2400ws packs. Unless you look/shoot straight into the light this will not be a problem.

Shooting highspeed photography using FD to freeze action requires pitch black studio, even in this scenario, it's not a problem unless you shoot into the light.

Shooting Speedlight on camera (which I never do) shooting multiple frames, just tested in a pitch-black room firing off 10-frames looking thru the EVF, still not being blind for any period of time.

So unless you shoot straight into a powerful flash/strobe it's not a problem unless you have issues with your eyesight.

The OP said strobes which for me is off camera studio strobes, a scenario where this simply isn't true.

[This is a correction, now that I realised that Tim Cool was referring to something else entirely.]

Okay, so MILCs do not make real shutter sounds when in silent mode, using an electronic shutter. In silent mode with electronic shutter, there is no blackout during non-strobe shooting (on some cameras).

However, an electronic shutter is not strobe compatible. Therefore, when using a strobe, (of any kind, OCF or ocf, flashgun or studio strobe), the camera goes into mechanical shutter mode. This requires each shot to cause a shutter close, (blackout begins), sensor read, (to clear the sensor), shutter open & close, (actual exposure with strobe), sensor read, (image capture), shutter open, (blackout ends).

This blackout is similar to mirror blackout on SLRs, but it can be more daunting due to EVF lag, and other issues. If it is a TTL strobe, then it may get more complex. Not sure how TTL works with MILC systems.

[EDIT To clarify what I posted….]

When a mirrorless camera with a CMOS sensor is being used, the mechanical shutter has to remain open during EVF, (or live view), (so that light can reach the sensor, obviously). When the shutter release is fully depressed, the mechanical shutter has to be closed, then any data on the sensor has to be cleared (by reading), then the image has to be captured by the mechanical shutter opening and closing for the specified exposure time, then the sensor has to be read to save the image data, and then the mechanical shutter can reopen. Things are different with a CCD sensor, but the last CCD sensor I am aware of, off the top of my head, is the Pentax 645D.

If the camera also has an electronic shutter, the procedure is slightly different. On actuating the shutter, the camera starts reading the sensor from the top to clear the sensor data, (the electronic “first curtain”).. As soon as a row is cleared, it starts to capture image data. When the allotted exposure time has passed, the camera initiates a second read process to save the image data, (the electronic “second curtain”), regardless of how far the first read has progressed.

Generally speaking, it takes longer to read a sensor than the mechanical shutter speed, or flash sync speed. For this reason, most cameras with electronic shutters either cannot use a strobe in “silent shutter” mode, or switch to mechanical shutter when in flash mode. Here are excerpts for the flagship models of some of the current MILC makers, (in alphabetical order), from their own documentation.

Canon EOS R

Images of fast-moving subjects may look distorted.
Continuous shooting, AEB shooting, and flash photography are not available.

Nikon Z7/Z6

Enabling silent photography changes the frame advance rates
for continuous release modes and disables some features, including the flash, long exposure noise reduction, flicker reduction, and the beep speaker.

[Ironic that one cannot have “noise reduction” in “silent mode.” 😏😋😂😉 ]

Olympus OM-D EM-1X

Synchronization Speed ¹/250 sec*
*When using electronic shutter: ¹/50 sec. up to ISO6400, ¹/20 sec. for ISO 8000 and higher, and ¹/20 sec. for ISO bracketing.

Sony α9

A flash cannot be used when [Shutter Type] is set to [Electronic Shut.]. A flash can be used during continuous shooting with [Shutter Type] set to [Auto]. The mechanical shutter will be used.

Sony α7R III

If you shoot images under instantaneous lightning or flickering lights, such as the flash light from other cameras or fluorescent lighting, a striping effect may occur on the image.

You cannot select [Silent Shooting] when the mode dial is set to other than P/A/S/M.
When [Silent Shooting] is set to [On], the following functions are not available:
Flash shooting
Auto HDR
Picture Effect
Picture Profile
Long Exposure NR
e-Front Curtain Shut.
BULB shooting

The only one of these models which allow flash with electronic shutter, the OM-D EM-1X, has a relatively long sync time. This is due to the time required to read the sensor; a time which varies due to dual reading mode for high/low EI values.

The process would begin with a full sensor read to clear the data. As this read begins, image data is being recorded. Once the entire sensor has been read, (the electronic “first curtain” is “fully open”), the flash is triggered, flooding its light on the entire sensor. The image data is then collected with another sensor read, (the electronic “second curtain”). Due to noise reduction techniques used at higher EI settings, the flash sync speed for the e-shutter is even longer above EI= ISO 8000/40°


You can stop making up issues now, I already told you there are no issues have you used an EVF with strobes?

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