Mirrorless cameras took something of photography from us, and I still miss it

Chris Cartledge
(Image credit: Chris Cartledge)

Eliminating the need for a mirror box, neatly sidestepping a litany of associated drawbacks — from physical depth and weight to shutter shock and lens design compromises — has been a defining feature of the mirrorless revolution. By relying on the sensor readout to monitor what the camera sees we’ve been treated to innovations like 100% focus area, silent shooting, real-time exposure preview and more… but losing an optical path from lens to eye is a sad price to pay for all this power.

Looking through a DSLR’s optical viewfinder is one of the most gratifying experiences in photography. The immediacy, the clarity, the sense of being truly ‘in’ the scene is unmatched by a screen or electronic viewfinder; even as EVF resolution, frame rate, and colour accuracy improve, it will never truly match the real thing — like looking out of a window versus watching a TV feed of the same view.

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Chris Cartledge
Freelance Writer

Chris is an experienced photographer, shooting mainly portrait, landscape, street, and product, as well as a confident videographer. He has acted for many years as lead product specialist at Canon EMEA, launching cameras and lenses — present during the general industry shift from DSLR to mirrorless and the mobile phone boom chomping at the heels of DSC; an exciting time! He also knows a thing or two about music, having been featured in Hip Hop Connection and Music Radar, but of course we wouldn't know about tunes here ;-)