What is a Mirrorless Camera, The difference with a DSLR? - MindaFilm

What is a Mirrorless Camera, The difference with a DSLR?

What is a Mirrorless Camera, The difference with a DSLR?


When I hear the term "changing camera lens" (ILC) alias camera with a lens that can be changed, usually the pictured is a DSLR camera along with a row of large and heavy lenses.

But not all ILC can be classified as a Digital Single-Lens Reflex (DSLR). In recent years, ILC has circulated a new type of size that is much more compact. This camera category is commonly known as Mirrorless ILC (MILC) or for short "mirrorless" only.

What is a mirrorless camera? Appropriate nickname which means "without mirror", the real mirrorless is a DSLR that removed the light reflector (mirrorbox).

Without a mirrorbox that serves to bend light from. Optical viewfinder, the size of the mirrorless camera can be remotely shrunken compared to DSLR, while retaining the captured image quality and replaceable lenses.


Panasonic's output diagram of the difference between Lumix GF1's mirrorless camera and the Lumix L10 DSLR. The DSLR mirrorbox mechanism is made up of the main mirrors that deflect light from the lens to the OVF and metering sensors (AE Sensors), and a second mirror (sub mirror) that bends light to the AF sensor at the bottom of the camera to autofocus. The contest, the mirrorless construction is much simpler as it is lightly forwarded directly to the image sensor, which then holds the captured image as a preview on the LCD or EVF screen.

Between the mirrorless and the DSLR

Because it does not have a mirrorbox, the mirrorless camera has the amount of difference with DSLR in addition to its relatively smaller form and simpler construction (without mechanical components for mirrors).

First, mirrorless does not have an optical viewfinder (OVF, optical viewfinder). Processor or electronic viewfinder (EVF, electronic viewfinder).

How EVF works is actually the same as the LCD screen, channeling the image through the sensor that continues to active. It's just a different placement and size, already created the same optical viewfinder to "dikeker" with the eyes.

EVF has advantages over OVF, for example users can directly see changes in exposure results when adjusting parameters such as aperture, ISO, or white balance. Can also be added overlay of various useful information, such as level indicator or histogram for guided disclosure.

The drawback, EVF more extravagant power because the camera must always activate the sensor and screen viewfinder so that users can see the picture.



The OVF on the DSLR displays the image from the lens (via The Lens, TTL) by bending the light through the mirrorbox and pentaprisma mechanisms, as shown in the yellow drawing area in the left image. EVF on mirrorless has a way of working with the LCD screen, which shows the image captured by the sensor. Only, the laying and size is different.

DSLR users can see the object in front of the lens (Through The Lens, TTL) via OVF when the camera is not turned on. This is because the mechanism of the mirror from light to pentaprisma, then viewfinder, without having to the sensor.
Instead, the EVF on the mirror will look pitch black when the camera is not on. If the camera is on and the sensor is on, then the image "seen" by the lens can be displayed in EVF mirrorless.

When used to shoot through the LCD, both mirrorless and DSLR (via Live View) using the same working principle, while the image images are captured sensors to the screen.


Because on a digital display, EVF's mirrorless camera can be set to display a variety of things. Also included for the display and a smaller display for manual instructions, such as the mirrorless EVF owned by Fujifilm X-T1.

Different Sensors

The second difference, mirrorless do full-light (metering) and focus lock directly from the image sensor. The DSLR uses different sensor sensors for those purposes that are separate from the main image sensor.

The DSLR metering and autofocus sensors are respectively above and below. The incoming light from the lens is deflected by the mirrorbox mirror to follow these two sensors (in addition to forwarding to OVF), to perform the size of the light and focus.

When we press the shutter button, then the mirror mirror lifted so that light can be forwarded to the main image sensor to take photos.

Impressed complicated? It is. This is also the process of making DSLR must be done precisely because of the many mechanical components involved.


The mirrorless camera does not require the ribet structure above. The advantages, in addition to the physical size of the camera is more compact, more accurate than the DSLR.

Mixing technique that detects directly. The prone to miss the calibration is less precision.

Indeed, though more accurate, more accurate, more accurate, easier, easier.

However, mirrorless engineers have begun to lag in terms of focus speed by embedding the detection phase of the image sensor.

How to detect the distance with the current photo remotely - higher as in contrast detect-, then direct the direction of the motor focus to the appropriate distance. This method is used by a separate autofocus sensor on the DSLR so that it can lock the focus of lightning and move the moving subjects (focus tracking).

The latest mirrors, such as the Alpha A6300 from Sony and the X-T2 from Fujifilm which are equipped with phase sensors in the image sensor, can be said to be able to match the DSLR in terms of speed and moving moving subjects.


The distance of the lens holder to the sensor (less arrow) on the mirrorless camera (bottom) is shorter than the DSLR because it has no mirror. Mirrorless camera body can be made thinner.

Lighter, more flexible

Then the difference lies in the lens. Mirrorbox removal culminate in the flange focal distance alias distance from the lens holder to the image sensor that participate trimmed.

As a result, although most of the mirrorless camera manufacturers also produce (or once) DSLRs, they can not necessarily pair DSLR lenses with mirrorless cameras.

A new lens line designed specifically for the mirrorless is designed to match the shorter flange focal distance and also with the direct focus structure of the sensor.

Reduced flange focal distance produces two advantages, mirrorless camera body can be made thinner, not "fat" like a DSLR that must provide a place for the mirrorbox.

Mirrorless lenses are usually designed to be smaller than the classy DLSR lens. Remember the pancake lens? This type of thin lens was developed to be suitable for use with mirrorless cameras.

On the other hand, the mirrorless camera is more flexible about the alias lens can be fitted with lenses for different camera systems with the help of an adapter, including DSLR's lens.


Adapters are installed between the lens and the camera. With this tool, mirrorless camera can wear DSLR lens.

This adapter works to increase the "distance" between the lens holder and the image sensor to compensate for the trimmed focal distance flange.
In this case, the use of an adapter from a function, such as autofocus and image stabilizer. But there is also a special adapter that is capable of such a function as a visual camera, like that of Canon's EOS-M mirrorless series.

Of course, sometimes a large DSLR lens and less suitable weight paired with a tiny mirrorless camera. Therefore, the original lens line specifically designed for mirrorless remains more practical.


The current mirrorless camera usually has a rangefinder form factor with a touchscreen LCD like the Alpha A5100 example from Sony (left), or a DSLR-style form factor with handgrip and center viewfinder like Fujifilm X-T2 (center). There is also a mirrorless style rangefinder which also features a viewfinder beside the LCD screen, like the Lumix GX8 from Panasonic (right).

More choices

The first mirrorless camera was the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 which was released to the market in 2008. It was still a DSLR spirit with a "hump" section that contained the viewfinder.

Shortly after the Lumix G1, mirrorless cameras began to appear in more compact form, such as pocket cameras with removable lenses, such as the E-P1 Pen from Olympus and Lumix GF1, also made by Panasonic.

The camera without a mirror with a more compact and non-horned form is known as "peeping force", the rectangle-shaped remote camera is rectangular.

Not the right choice. For the purposes of shooting, but there is also EVF in the upper left corner of the camera.

Currently, the camera without mirrors is arguably embraced both form factors, similar to traditional DSLRs with humps containing EVF or similar reconnaissance.

Which is more suitable depending on user tastes. Some like the shape. Spy camera rangefinder, there is also a more comfortable with a mirrorless a la DSLR with handgrip and many buttons for manual settings.

Of the two form factor, mirrorless is more diverse than DSLR that average carrying similar form, merely with hump, handgrip, and body plump.

Not to mention counting the variety of types of systems (brands) available. Different from the DSLR market practically dominated by Canon and Nikon, the number of manufacturers who try their luck in the realm of mirrorless more.

There are Panasonic and Olympus whose lenses can be mutually exchanged, then Sony and Fujifilm, even Leica, in addition to the two old players Canon and Nikon. Various accessories such as flashgun to a microphone that can be paired with a mirrorless camera was already a lot of pairs.

The size of the sensor that can be selected also more diverse. Want tiny lenses? There are manufacturers that make mirrorless with a sensor of 1 inch or micro four-thirds. Want maximum image quality? There are also mirrorless manufacturers with APS-C and full-frame resistant sensors.

One thing that may still be a stumbling block is the type of screen that never DSLR, especially for professional lens series, super telephones or special lenses such as tilt-shift, although this can be overcome a bit by using a lens adapter.

However, slowly but surely, mirrorless pointing behind. Like the speed problem that is now no longer a scourge, it is not impossible someday mirrorless can match or even pass the DSLR in all respects.
What is a Mirrorless Camera, The difference with a DSLR? What is a Mirrorless Camera, The difference with a DSLR? Reviewed by Unknown on January 23, 2018 Rating: 5

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