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09-03-2013, 08:13 PM - 1 Like   #1
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Pentax re-upping in retail?

Just went and picked up a K 50/1.2 lens I'd found on the internet at my local photo store, which previously had only sold Canon, Nikon & a few Sony SLR's. I walked right by it when entering the store, but after testing out the lens (and the clerks ogling the FA-43 I previously had on the camera now laying on the counter - they thought the manual focus feel was pretty nice - and asked when it was from, if it was autofocus, etc), they pointed to a center display in the store. "Wanna check out the new Pentaxes?" a clerk says, and much to my surprise, I turn and notice a K-50 display with probably a dozen color schemes of the camera, a demo unit and a tablet set up to create your own color combination and order it. He points at an 18-55 AL II they had on the demo camera (I asked, apparently they lost the DAL, although all the other colors had matching DAL lenses) and tells me how it's waterproof (it obviously isn't) because of the seals. He then pitches the camera, turning on the Live View focusing, remarking how quickly it focuses, the dual dials and takes a few pics to prove it takes good shots. While he might've messed up on a random lens' spec, he clearly had somebody pitch it to him, so I asked if the Ricoh/Pentax rep had stopped in - they had, and were giving out the demo/displays and spreading the word about the brand.

Long story short, I think Pentax is re-upping in retail. Makes me happy to see the brand out there in more locations like Target (so it's a WG-10, who cares, later in life they go into the camera shop looking for a DSLR and remember the good experience they had with the WG-10) and Best Buy. It gives me a warm fuzzy about Ricoh for some reason.

What have you guys seen? Any more presence in retail in your areas?


Last edited by slipdm16; 09-03-2013 at 08:22 PM. Reason: grammar
09-03-2013, 08:26 PM   #2
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Cool! I hope you corrected him about the WR just so a buying customer doesn't get a rude suprise!
Reminds me of when I was checking out a Q and K01 in Sydney and I was putting the DA40XS on my K7.
The salespeople were like, wow, what a small lens! Iit works on a regular camera?
And of course I said the K01 it was backward compatible with pretty much all of Pentax K mount lenses.
They also remarked how great both cameras felt, just goes to show the difference a good rep makes.
09-03-2013, 08:28 PM   #3
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Don't have a picture of the display do you? That would be cool.

In our local BB there is a stand alone Sony display rack showing off the lenses and so on, nice graphics all put together very nice. I think the Ricoh display must be similar except it sounds like they are capitalizing on the customization. I had not fully comprehended the impact that will make at retail from an attention getting perspective. It may (or may not) sell many colors and custom cameras but it WILL attract attention and if it does nothing but raise brand awareness that's a win.
09-03-2013, 08:30 PM   #4
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There is this sign that was installed in December at my local shop. (ME Super M 28mm f3.5 on HP5+ developed in D-76)



At this same retailer in June /July(?) the Corporate rep was demoing K5II / Q10 + Q to K lens adapter + DFA 100 f2.8 and was parked conveniently beside Sigma but mentioned that the next tent event they will be bringing all the Pentax Mount demo's (to which the Sigma Reps nodded). There was on C&N mounts to demo that particular day.

As I understand it Henry's was adding Pentax Glass to their rental program... but I don't know much about that. I also frequent a couple other fotosource locations and the store staff were keen to tell me... nothing, but stay tuned, they're just not allowed to talk about anything. (I'm assuming NDA).

If the store staff of B&M outlets are excited about the brand there is definitely something going on.

09-03-2013, 08:30 PM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
I had not fully comprehended the impact that will make at retail from an attention getting perspective. It may (or may not) sell many colors and custom cameras but it WILL attract attention and if it does nothing but raise brand awareness that's a win.
That's the entire point of colors. And there's a LOT going on under the surface, just about to break. Denver is spending a LOT of money in the next few months. If they aren't at a trade show it is because they're spending the money elsewhere.

Good sources on this - good things are coming.
09-03-2013, 08:35 PM   #6
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Hope you are right. Last time I was in my local Target I didn't see any Pentax cameras. They currently show the K-30 on their website. I would imagine they'll get the new K-50 & K-500 on there at some point but I'll believe that when I see it. They've got to get the Ricoh/Pentax name out there to create some interest and some sales.
09-03-2013, 08:38 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
That's the entire point of colors.
Yes, yes I know. But I had not thought it through. The kiosk with a tablet with the colors and customization will draw people like a magnet. People who don't even want a camera. How can you not go over and check it out? There will be crowds around it, a line waiting to play with the demo.... I'm so excited I don't think I can sleep.............

Somebody please post a picture!
09-03-2013, 08:52 PM   #8
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My recent visit to central Australia - there was a pentax X5 on sale at the news agent at Uluru (Ayres Rock) and quite a bit of pentax camera gear on sale in Alice Springs at the camera shop. I wasn't alone after all.

09-03-2013, 08:59 PM   #9
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Hopefully we'll see some Pentax in SoCal. Even Samys has effectively stopped carrying them in stock (still will order them).
Hooper Camera left them a few years back.
Frys carries just the 50-200mm lens (been sitting there for years), and an X-5. The last camera I saw there was the K-r and Q.
Target has the WG.

Personally - I bought my K-x for a handful of reasons (over the Canon EOS Rebel / Nikon 3000 at the time).
1. AA batteries - its a personal thing.
2. Ability to use lenses that go way back
3. Fast shutter (compared to the others)
4. It did video (bonus)
5. In body shake reduction (SR) vs. lens (cheaper lenses)
6. Old fashioned screw drive vs. SDM (cheaper more reliable lens)
7. Highly rated.
8. Most important - I could order it in whatever colour (got mine in Red) - Wife likes it for conversation piece

I'm torn between K-50 (red) and K-30 (other red)
09-03-2013, 09:13 PM   #10
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Original Poster
QuoteQuote:
Don't have a picture of the display do you? That would be cool.
I thought of this as I was writing the post, that I should've just taken a picture of it with my new lens I'll have to go back...

QuoteQuote:
Hope you are right. Last time I was in my local Target I didn't see any Pentax cameras
The only one I saw in mine (the Minneapolis HQ Target downtown, where they do concepts too) was the WG-10 - it's also on their website (along with WG-1, X5, 18-55, 50-200, 18-135 and K-30), but priced too high.

My whole thought with the display was that Pentax realized it had lost most of its base, and the K-50, with it's more conservative design, colors and WR, is a way to win some back. I think they're just executing on that strategy now...
09-03-2013, 09:40 PM - 1 Like   #11
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Here's the Pentax display at my local camera store. Unfortunately their stock is rather out dated.


09-03-2013, 09:45 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
Here's the Pentax display at my local camera store. Unfortunately their stock is rather out dated.
I want the giant Spotmatic.
09-03-2013, 10:08 PM   #13
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If I could get about half of what I see in the showcase, I would be extremely happy.
I have never been to a camera shop that has ever had that much Pentax on display.
09-03-2013, 10:23 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by slipdm16 Quote
He points at an 18-55 AL II they had on the demo camera (I asked, apparently they lost the DAL, although all the other colors had matching DAL lenses) and tells me how it's waterproof (it obviously isn't) because of the seals.
QuoteOriginally posted by slipdm16 Quote
While he might've messed up on a random lens' spec,
Just to clarify, the new DA L version of the 18-55 is WR - it was announced with the K-50. So if he is referring to the DA L WR version of the lens (if you can, go back and look closely), then he is in fact correct. It is the same lens as the DA L (no quickshift, no lens hood, plastic mount (?)), but it is WR. A great move in my opinion since those buying this camera for the 18-55 kit (for the most part) aren't enthusiasts and never use hoods or quick shift.

That aside, what I find most surprising is the clerk's enthusiasm about showing off the "New Pentax's" - that is something you don't hear about too often. Don't underestimate the spirit of something, and I concur that this bodes very well for the future

-Heie
09-03-2013, 10:47 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
Here's the Pentax display at my local camera store. Unfortunately their stock is rather out dated.


That's Naughty Twitch...

The camera museum at Michaels is not EXACTLY the Pentax display.....
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