Dear Manufacturers: It’s 2015. Why Aren’t You Doing This Yet?

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Canon 7D Mk II review images portraits (2 of 2)ISO 4001-160 sec at f - 4.0

Dear Manufacturers of Traditional Cameras,

We want to commend you. In a world seemingly dominated by the smartphone and Instagram, you guys are still finding ways to kill it. You’re finding ways to innovate, meet customer demands, stay profitable, and keep gear heads as hungry as an addict looking for meth.

Congratulations: you’re making the camera appeal much more to customers. Heck, pretty much every single one of you have acknowledged that all folks want to do is take a selfie and post it online.

You’ve found ways to add connectivity to phones and tablets that we’ve never dreamed of before. And for the most part, while all of you have your own special take on it, it works. Not a single person except for the most technically inept person could complain.

You’ve found a way to shove a WiFi transmitter into a camera.

You’ve given it Bluetooth.

You’ve given it NFC.

You’ve given them some seriously amazing sensors and lenses.

All of this needs to be commended.

While you’ve been making major strides though, we have to ask about what you’re doing for the strobist. For years and years, you tell us to use your flashes and put them off-camera while triggering them with a method done for more years than I’ve been alive. Indeed, infrared transmission has gone the way of the dinosaurs and has its major limits. Anyone who is serious about their off-camera flash work would never use it.

Yet for some completely beguiling reason, you choose not to put a radio transmitter of some sort into your camera to wirelessly trigger the flashes in your own camera system.

You, the collective you, have found a way to make cameras become a wireless hotspot, communicate with devices via Bluetooth, and connect to mobile devices via NFC: yet you have neglected to address the needs of the creative that wants to light their own scenes.


Have you seen how small a wireless radio flash transmitter can be? Have you not realized that information like channels and grouping can be transmitted from camera to flash just by having them touch?

So I ask you this: why?

In a day and age where DSLR sales are declining but mirrorless sales are staying put, why have you only focused on putting the majority of marketing into a camera and not the idea of a complete system and potential? Apple does it! Have you seen how a MacBook, iPad, iPhone and Apple TV synergize to work so well together? It’s mind blowing.

Why is there not enough support within your own system for lighting? Lighting is, after all, one of the biggest things that separates a “photographer” from a photographer while combined with an effective creative vision.

Would it kill a camera line if you put another radio in?

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.