Mirror-less tech does not have to worry about a look up mirror failing after 50k shots.
That if anything is a reason people will buy that form of camera, it will be the lack of failing moving parts.
However, I recently purchased a 60D and I can tell you, I save a truck load of battery by using the optical viewfinder, that is why the DSLR market is still going to exist if anything. Also people know an SLR when they see it and they know the results they get, there is no light bleeding in from a lit LCD if you don't want it and what you see though the viewfinder is what the lens sees.
It is just a matter of battery conversational techniques that will eventually kill the DLSR.
I like the idea of a mirrorless. I've used my brother's Nex 5N, but something that kills me is the lack of an optical viewfinder. I mean, on a sunny day or late at night it is extremely difficult to see your image (sunny) and it's extremely difficult to focus at night. The electronic viewfinders and LCD screens are good, unless you're trying to track something. Under low light or just tracking in general I've found both to be extremely laggy and low quality, very difficult to get something decent. Whereas the optical viewfinder has no limitations in that regard. The lighter cameras are also more difficult to handhold. Most mirrorless also have smaller sensors and lack things like CF slots. In addition to a few other fairly minor complaints I still feel that mirrorless systems are very lacking in professional appearance. I can't imagine a wedding photographer making a living off of a mirrorless system simply because it's not particularly 'professional' equipment. People like the big, black, cameras with the sleak looking lenses mounted on them, they look good, even the entry level ones look 'better' than the silver Nex that I used. Now I know appearance is a minor thing to complain about but my point is that DSLRs are not going to die soon. Mirrorless has a ways to come to overcome the benefits of a DSLR.
Well, the market does change indeed. But it isn't simply MILCs (yes, MILC, not MCIL) replacing DSLRs.
As summarized by [link] , I think that MILCs are replacing the lower end of DSLRs while higher end DSLRs all become full frame models. At CP+, Canon confirmed this opinion.
So, for the bulk of amateur use cases, MILCs are indeed replacing DSLRs. This transition is now 50% complete in Japan and starting in the US, with Europe somewhere in between.
But IMHO, for more serious use cases, DSLRs are to stay. They will evolve to deliver a higher image quality than is possible otherwise (starting with a superior viewfinder and sensor size). With full frame sensors and larger. To some extent, they will become the medium format cameras of the digital age.
I don't think the MCILs (I like that name) will be completely replacing the DSLR. However, they'll most likely cater to people who want to use the advantages of a DSLR but are reluctant to carry the large devices with them. But I think beyond a certain price, you won't see them because these people will not be likely to spend 1500+ on just a body.
Right now such a camera is still in the imagination. In the current state, shutter shock in some mirrorless cameras is worse than mirror shock in a dSLR. More megapixels crammed onto a smaller sensor means an increased sensitivity to vibration-induced motion blur and smaller cameras are more susceptible to the effects of vibration. Electronic viewfinders still need to get better as well. Better designed shutters are possible, though, and it is going to be interesting to see how rapidly this technology advances over the next few years, though.
In the end all cameras are a compromise and for those who are willing to compromise a little on image quality for a smaller size, these cameras are already a good choice.
Yes the technology around mirror less systems still has a bit to go and I am not disputing that however it would be interesting to review this thread in 2 years and see what is available then.
For good or bad I see it as a natural progression to get rid of the reflex mirror.
My opinion on this is totally based on what I feel as technical progression and progress made in camera technology. While I have played around with a few of these cameras I certainly dont think a great deal of them.
I only plan on going digital at all when I can get a digital back for my 4x5 for less than 10K
Actually the development of mirrorless cameras that surpass dSLR's has been held back by the insistence of the consumer market that cameras be small and crammed with as many megapixels as possible. The sort of camera that you have described is something that is doable in the next couple of years if the camera companies perceive a market. Mirrorless users don't seem willing to accept something large enough to overcome some of the problems and the dSLR shooters will be reluctant to change systems that would require a new set of lenses to really take advantage of a shorter registration distance.
With your equipment, skills, and experience to produce large, high quality wet darkroom prints, you are an increasingly rare and valued species, so there is definitely no reason for you to change your approach.