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12-01-2019, 05:38 PM   #1
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A realistic path forward

With the increasingly narrow latitude that major camera makers have these days, it seems that Ricoh / Pentax opportunities are limited. Here are a few ideas that make sense to me:
1. Ricoh should use the Pentax brand for all of consumer photography offerings,
2. Ricoh should compete on the basis of quality vs quantity,
3. Bodies should be small, weather sealed with emphasis on build quality, up to date sensors, the very best IBIS and still images,
4. The very best of Pentax compact f2.8 primes should be re-issued in all metal bodies.
5. Ricoh/Pentax should focus on the following continuum of formats; Medium, full frame, apsc, fixed lens GR, and a mirrorless system based on the GR.
Would appreciate your thoughts. It seems that the path for Pentax is thin but still there…

12-01-2019, 05:47 PM - 1 Like   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by PentaxRT Quote
With the increasingly narrow latitude that major camera makers have these days, it seems that Ricoh / Pentax opportunities are limited. Here are a few ideas that make sense to me:
1. Ricoh should use the Pentax brand for all of consumer photography offerings,
2. Ricoh should compete on the basis of quality vs quantity,
3. Bodies should be small, weather sealed with emphasis on build quality, up to date sensors, the very best IBIS and still images,
4. The very best of Pentax compact f2.8 primes should be re-issued in all metal bodies.
5. Ricoh/Pentax should focus on the following continuum of formats; Medium, full frame, apsc, fixed lens GR, and a mirrorless system based on the GR.
Would appreciate your thoughts. It seems that the path for Pentax is thin but still there…
1. Ricoh seems to be using the Pentax brand only for ILC. I don't see any benefit to using that brand for other cameras.

2. appears to be current policy
3. appears to be current policy

4. I'm not sure what benefit they would gain by doing this

5. I believe MILC without EVF is hopeless - and I doubt if they have time to develop another mount.
12-01-2019, 05:48 PM   #3
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Looks pretty straight forward except I expect future GR releases will continue as a Ricoh offering, whether fixed lens or interchangeable lens. The market for low priced entry level interchangeable lens cameras is probably dead for as long as cell phone cameras continue to improve and evolve.
12-01-2019, 06:30 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
....I believe MILC without EVF is hopeless...
Somehow, some manufacturers haven’t figured this out. I guess they figure the cell phone users won’t notice.

12-01-2019, 06:49 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by PentaxRT Quote
With the increasingly narrow latitude that major camera makers have these days, it seems that Ricoh / Pentax opportunities are limited. Here are a few ideas that make sense to me:
1. Ricoh should use the Pentax brand for all of consumer photography offerings,
2. Ricoh should compete on the basis of quality vs quantity,
3. Bodies should be small, weather sealed with emphasis on build quality, up to date sensors, the very best IBIS and still images,
4. The very best of Pentax compact f2.8 primes should be re-issued in all metal bodies.
5. Ricoh/Pentax should focus on the following continuum of formats; Medium, full frame, apsc, fixed lens GR, and a mirrorless system based on the GR.
Would appreciate your thoughts. It seems that the path for Pentax is thin but still there…
They seem to be doing OK with what they are doing, and as reh321 says, 2 and 3 is pretty much what they do. I'm sure they will analyze and research to death before remaking any lenses or starting any new system. There are a lot of things I'd love to see, but I can't buy everything they put out, and many I don't care about. They have to do a lot of market research before committing development and manufacturing. And like all manufacturers, sometimes they miss. Ricoh is a huge company, but the imaging division, which does not seem to be large, has to profit on its own.

I'm curious, what do you think "very best of Pentax compact f2.8 primes" would be? I'm guessing that list would differ hugely from different forum members.
12-01-2019, 07:09 PM   #6
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It seems that Ricoh's current strategy is working well. There's certainly a focus on the GR and Theta lines to augment the dropoff in the consumer SLR segment.

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12-01-2019, 07:09 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by mlt Quote
Somehow, some manufacturers haven’t figured this out. I guess they figure the cell phone users won’t notice.
Smart phones are a different animal, because most people don't have it only because of camera - they are multipurpose device.

But if you look at something designed as camera only

1. Sony NEX was not very successful, Sony added EVF and renamed it a6xxx, and it became successful

2. Canon EOS-M was failure outside Orient. Canon added EVF .... resulting cameras, such as M-50 allowed Canon to be very successful as MILC producer even before "FF".
12-01-2019, 08:02 PM - 3 Likes   #8
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I don't think reissuing old lenses is the way forward. It might appeal to long time Pentax users, but they will be a dwindling group. New customers are needed, and they will be looking for modern glass with quick and quiet autofocus.

12-01-2019, 09:33 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Qman Quote
I don't think reissuing old lenses is the way forward. It might appeal to long time Pentax users, but they will be a dwindling group. .
It's not a way forward, it's just a way to get cash from inventory, while it makes sense not to invest in a declining market.

---------- Post added 02-12-19 at 05:35 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by PentaxRT Quote
A realistic path forward
The is path forward, but the path leads to a swamp.
12-01-2019, 10:10 PM   #10
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1. Why, exactly? Ricoh was an established camera maker before its acquisition of Pentax. Ricoh has pride in the products it has
developed.

2. Is Ricoh not doing that now?

3. Is Ricoh not doing that now?

4. Why limit this to 2.8 primes? I can think of many excellent designs from the past that would be welcome additions in the present.
The M series 20/4 comes to mind.

5. Such a diverse selection of offerings seems at odds with limited opportunities........

:/
12-02-2019, 12:00 AM   #11
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Refreshing old lenses vs. Making new lenses... I see your point. But I'd prefer new lenses. They can still be inspired by old and good designs, but I'd prefer them looking forward rather than investing resources in working on past products.

At Pentax they go Evolution over Revolution. That's their base strategy. So I think —if they decide to make a milc— it's more likely that a mirrorless system evolves out of the GR line opposed to a completely new line. TheGR is already successful so it should be easier to extend that development team instead of installing a new one.
12-02-2019, 01:40 AM - 1 Like   #12
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It wouldn't be a simple matter of re-issuing lenses in metal bodies - they would have to be redesigned and re-tooled. The metal parts are machined - not cast or molded like the plastic/resin parts. Unless you want to go back re-issues of all metal lenses like the M series. I doubt the tooling, dies and CNC programs still exist for these. And do you really want to pay new prices for MF pre-KA mount lenses (hundreds of USD)?
12-02-2019, 01:51 AM   #13
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I could think of many qualifiers suited for this so-called 'path forward' but 'realistic' is definitely not the first one to come to my mind.
12-02-2019, 02:02 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
It seems that Ricoh's current strategy is working well
If it works, don't fix it! If you start fixing something that works, you might end up with something that doesn't work. I've seen that happened before.
12-02-2019, 02:15 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
1. Ricoh seems to be using the Pentax brand only for ILC. I don't see any benefit to using that brand for other cameras.

2. appears to be current policy
3. appears to be current policy

4. I'm not sure what benefit they would gain by doing this

5. I believe MILC without EVF is hopeless - and I doubt if they have time to develop another mount.
Agree on all points
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