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09-25-2015, 11:06 AM   #1
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The biggest Pentax flop.

What do you think? What is the biggest Pentax flop in their history? I'm young and I don't know much about problems with cameras in the older days, but what do you think? What changed the way people think about Pentax? What made their reputation worse?

My bet is unreliable MZ/ZX series with "stuck mirror" problem, which had a bad influence on the reputation of Pentax as an maker of reliable equipment.

09-25-2015, 11:16 AM   #2
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The LX was kind of a market flop, wasn't it? Compared to what it should have been, and what I think was expected. (Just speaking in terms of sales.)
09-25-2015, 11:16 AM   #3
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Sorry, I'm not aware of any Pentax reputation as being a manufacturer of unreliable equipment. Underdog, yes, but a very excellent and capable underdog.
09-25-2015, 11:29 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
The LX was kind of a market flop, wasn't it? Compared to what it should have been, and what I think was expected. (Just speaking in terms of sales.)
I don't think you can call a camera that was produced for more than 20 years a flop.

The biggest Pentax flop has to be the ME F.

09-25-2015, 11:30 AM   #5
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I am quite new to all this but I would say the dirty sensors and the mirror flop in the K-5 became quite famous.
ES spotmatics seem to be quite unreliable too.
09-25-2015, 11:32 AM - 1 Like   #6
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I think that, in general, Pentax was a bit late to the party when cameras started moving more towards Program modes and auto-focus...and they've never fully recovered. Plus, Pentax used to think of their medium format film cameras as their "pro" gear and their 35mm cameras as amateur/advanced amateur equipment. That doesn't mean that they never tried to build pro-quality 35mm cameras. The K2DMD, the MX, the LX, and the PZ-1 were all cameras that were aimed at being at least equal to the best offerings from other manufacturers, but I don't think Pentax ever had any serious dreams of being as prevalent along the sidelines of sporting events as Canon or Nikon. As far as real clunkers, I don't think Pentax has made very many, if any. The ME-F could be considered an..."eh, why bother?" camera, but it wasn't a prominent enough model to have sunk Pentax's ship. Someone else may know for sure, but I've always had the impression that Pentax just didn't have deep enough pockets to compete with Canon and Nikon when technology really started changing. Also, for what it's worth, Pentax has been this way for quite a while. They stuck with the M42 mount long after other manufacturers were perfecting their bayonet mounts. But then again, maybe they didn't perfect them since the K-mount is still rolling along. Maybe Pentax just waited until they felt they had it right.
09-25-2015, 12:04 PM   #7
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MZ-D Prototype
The Pentax MZ-D, also known by its internal code name of MR-52, was a prototype digital single-lens reflex camera. It was announced at photokina in September 2000 and was demonstrated to the press at the Photo Marketing Association (PMA) show in January 2001. In October 2003, Pentax canceled the camera, stating "The cost of manufacturing the prototype SLR 6-megapixel digital camera meant it was not a viable product for our target market."
09-25-2015, 12:09 PM   #8
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The first thing to come to mind is the ME F...that held them back several years in the AF department.

Either that or re-releasing the same compact WR models 4 years in a row


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09-25-2015, 12:25 PM   #9
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MZ/ZX-5/5n/10/L/7/6/5/50/30 was not a flop, they were grand successes! They won test after test and was very popular in Europe and other places. There were a huge hit.

Nah, I say that the MZ-S was a flop. Not because of bad performance, it was really really excellent. But it was expensive and had a hand baked exclusive multi layer laquer finish and simply to exklusive for it's own good...

Then we have the film *ist - Pentax last SLR. Not a huge hit.

But most of Pentax SLR/DSLR's has had very good reputation..

Downside of Pentax was the Option digital compact. There were some oddities there... Like the digital camcorder the Optio MX.

---------- Post added 09-25-2015 at 09:26 PM ----------

The MZ/ZX-serie was a hughe success, they won test after test... and was highly praised. Not a flop at all.. I had three of them: MZ-5, MZ-5N and the MZ-10. I still have the MZ-5N...

Nah, I say that one of Pentax big flops was the Optio MX digital camcorder.
09-25-2015, 12:34 PM   #10
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Isn't the fact that Pentax are still making DSLRs a sign that they must have been doing something right all these years. The move to digital killed off Yashica/Contax and Minolta as SLR camera makers and the advent of AF a decade earlier killed of a lot more (including Ricoh who made some outstanding non AF cameras)
09-25-2015, 01:15 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mohb Quote
Isn't the fact that Pentax are still making DSLRs a sign that they must have been doing something right all these years. The move to digital killed off Yashica/Contax and Minolta as SLR camera makers and the advent of AF a decade earlier killed of a lot more (including Ricoh who made some outstanding non AF cameras)
One can be successful and still have had some "flops" in ones history.

Look at Microsoft -- Vista, ME, and of course, Microsoft Bob.
09-25-2015, 01:18 PM   #12
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Had Pentax actually made it, this

Last edited by Johndav; 07-15-2016 at 05:32 AM.
09-25-2015, 01:27 PM   #13
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Pentax FF
09-25-2015, 02:25 PM - 3 Likes   #14
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SDM autofocus
09-25-2015, 03:07 PM   #15
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I think Pentax lags behind Nikon and Canon at this point, in part due to their late arrival to digital. By the time Pentax released the *istD, Canon had been selling digital SLRS for three years. As normhead stated, the non-delivery of the MZ-D was likely a significant contributing factor.
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