Is the L mount alliance a bust? Panasonic only has 2.8% of the full-frame market

(Image credit: Panasonic)

While most camera manufacturers produce their own individual mounts, Panasonic is slightly different, having created the L mount alliance with Leica and Sigma. This means that any L mount lens can be used across any Panasonic, Leica or Sigma camera. However, it doesn't appear that this strategy could be delivering the results Panasonic was hoping for. New information from Japan has unveiled that that Panasonic only holds 2.8% of the market for full-frame cameras. 

This puts Panasonic pretty low in the rankings, significantly behind Canon and Sony –which are both currently leading the board. 

• Read more: Best mirrorless camera

Similar to Micro Four Thirds, the L mount alliance means that all three companies operate with one camera mounting system. All of the lenses and cameras that the companies produce are interchangeable and fully compatible. With Panasonic being the largest of the three, its 2.8% hold of the market doesn't bode well for the alliance as a whole. 

The report comes from BCNRankings, which confirms that Sony currently has the largest share of the market. Sony holds a huge 42.6% share of the full-frame market in Japan, while Canon sits at the number two spot with a healthy 31% share.

This shows that there is a huge gap between Panasonic and the other major manufacturers in the photography industry. Of course, it should be mentioned that these numbers are specific to Japan and may not be indicative of the the whole market. Nonetheless, it's not a great sign and could be quite concerning. 

Despite this, there is huge potential in the L-Mount due to the companies involved. The areas that could be holding back the L-mount include the lack of Phase Detect autofocus and some budget friendly options. With a few tweaks, the L mount alliance could still become a great success. 

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Usman Dawood

Usman is a commercial and architectural photographer based in West Yorkshire, who has been working professionally for over seven years. He has also spent over four years as a writer for the biggest photography sites in the world, including Staff Writer for Digital Camera World, senior staff writer for FStoppers, and tech writer for Petapixel. 

With a particular interest in technology developments, high-resolution imaging and the high-end cameras, Usman has been on the cutting edge of camera news as well as writing features about medium format systems and global shutters, and has reviewed some of the latest Leica cameras as well as a tripod that’s even taller than Andre the Giant!