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09-19-2020, 11:05 AM - 1 Like   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by Paul the Sunman Quote
These days, there has been a rush of mirrorless releases from the Big Boyz that pushes the technology forward at a dizzying rate. The 2019 sales figures make it clear that Pentax has no hope of competing in that pool. The decision to focus entirely on DSLR was not a decision at all, it was forced. They simply could not afford the development costs of a competitive mirrorless camera and lenses.
That part is probably accurate
QuoteQuote:
All the talk of the superior experience of OVF is a justification after the fact, even if they believe it themselves (and if we buy it too).
mmmm... that's overly harsh, I think. Put yourself in their shoes at the management level. Maybe the smart move in context is to focus on and improve strengths, especially if you are a small company. I honestly think it's the smart play. And I think there's a future in it as well---at least the foreseeable future. Beyond that, who knows what imaging will look like?

09-19-2020, 11:50 AM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mistral75 Quote
Announcement dates:
  • K-1: February 2016
  • K-70: June 2016
  • KP: January 2017
  • K-1 Mark II: February 2018
It has still been a couple of years since the release of their last SLR. Which was gentle refresh of the K-1 which was 4 years old...
09-19-2020, 02:09 PM   #48
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But they published a significant refresh of GR in 2019.
09-19-2020, 02:12 PM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by cport Quote
But they published a significant refresh of GR in 2019.
Right, but that's not included in the DSLR figures...

09-19-2020, 03:34 PM   #50
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...nor in the mirrorless ones since it's a compact camera.
09-19-2020, 07:29 PM - 4 Likes   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by texandrews Quote
Maybe the smart move in context is to focus on and improve strengths, especially if you are a small company.
It is the only viable option now, and that applies to the big players as well. So much of conventional wisdom is based on a progress myth, when in reality, for the photographic equipment industry at least, innovation isn't driving anything; what counts is enhancing the experience of emotionally invested customers.reliving past experiences.
QuoteOriginally posted by texandrews Quote
at least the foreseeable future
I see a relatively long timeline, people who snapped up point and shoot cameras in the nineties and the naughts to take photos of their kids will be retiring soon and looking for hobbies that don't mind diminished physical abilities and allow them to stop time. The phone camera crowd, who see a camera as worth nothing more than free, won't be in the same position for another thirty years and by then they may adopt standalone cameras as a way to connect to the memories of their very old (and possibly deceased) parents.
QuoteOriginally posted by texandrews Quote
who knows what imaging will look like?
Since Louis Daguerre invented a process to take photographs that only required a few minutes of exposure, still imaging has been all about freezing time. Videography is an utterly different beast, it is all about being able to manipulate a timeline. In both still and video photography, the key difference from other crafts/artforms is that the craftsman/artist is using a machine to generate a finished result instead of fabricating/creating with their hands and the skill/artistry comes from making the machine do something it wasn't really designed to do. Unless you are talking about utilitarian/industrial/medical applications, imaging in the next century will be just as recognizable as imaging from the 19th century.
09-19-2020, 09:02 PM - 8 Likes   #52
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40,000 doesn’t look much but I don’t see reason to despair about this.

- It was a time when no significant Pentax DSLRs were released, a few years earlier the K-1 was released and by the end of November the K-new should be on the market.
- Because they are focusing on ILC cameras, they are missing both of Ricoh’s success stories in that time frame - the GR III and the Theta cameras. Just prior to COVID-19, Ricoh Imaging executives were talking about increased profitability for the first time in years, but that story is missed.
- If you are a customer who takes comfort in being with the most popular brand, you are not going to be using Pentax anyway. Customers with that mentality left years ago.
- Pentax marketing seems more confident and open these days. We have had video presentations on their philosophy, future lenses and a future camera. I’m guessing that the GR success allowed them to green light some other Pentax products.
- The “Why does Pentax bother?” comments are just silly. They are a camera maker. That’s why they bother. They have customers and employees who rely on them. Do you expect them to just pack up and sign on to “Hallo Work” (the cutely-named Japanese unemployment office)?

To me the most interesting thing here is the huge opportunity implied in the statistics. Let’s say the K-new is a great camera with some new DSLR-specific innovation (i.e. features that are usable through the OVF rather than forcing the user into live view). Let’s say a full frame version follows a year after. Let’s say Ricoh continues to add 2-3 lenses each year. In the meantime, Canon and Nikon just port over live view features from their mirrorless cameras in future models, ignoring the OVF experience. They put all their lens efforts into building the R and Z lines. This would make Pentax look like the brand of choice for those with a preference for OVFs.

In this scenario, I’m sure that most customers will eventually be moved over to a mirrorless camera fo their existing brand or another. Some others will just stay using their existing mount, even if the updates Canon and Nikon make to the system are minimal. However, if Ricoh can convince just 1% of them to try a Pentax, that would double their unit volume.

Whether this happens is largely dependent on how good the K-new is. It’s a ground-up redesign of the DSLR, and it’s probably going to be announced in about a month. So at this time, I feel that optimism is a more appropriate response than worrying about past market share.

Last edited by JPT; 09-20-2020 at 12:49 AM.
09-20-2020, 12:49 AM - 2 Likes   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Right, but that's not included in the DSLR figures...
I know, but ... My point was that Ricoh haven't stopped working on new products. The new GR is quite amazing.

---------- Post added 09-20-20 at 12:50 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by JPT Quote
40,000 doesn’t look much but I don’t see reason to despair about this.

- It was a time when no significant Pentax DSLRs were released, a few years earlier the K-1 was released and by the end of November the K-new should be on the market.
- Because they are focusing on ILC cameras, they are missing both of Ricoh’s success stories in that time frame - the GR III and the Theta cameras. Just prior to COVID-19, Ricoh Imaging executives were talking about increased profitability for the first time in years, but that story is missed.
- If you are a customer who takes comfort in being with the most popular brand, you are not going to be using Pentax anyway. Customers with that mentality left years ago.
- Pentax marketing seems more confident and open these days. We have had video presentations on their philosophy, future lenses and a future camera. I’m guessing that the GR success allowed them to green light some other Pentax products.
- The “Why does Pentax bother?” comments are just silly. They are a camera maker. That’s why they bother. They have customers and employees who rely on them. Do you expect them to just pack up and sign on to “Hallo Work” (the cutely-named Japanese unemployment office)?

To me the most interesting thing here is the huge opportunity implied in the statistics. Let’s say the K-new is a great camera with some new DSLR-specific innovation (i.e. features that are usable through the OVF rather than forcing the user into live view). Let’s say a full frame version follows a year after. Let’s say Ricoh continues to add 2-3 lenses each year. In the meantime, Canon and Nikon just port over live view features from their mirrorless cameras in future models, ignoring the OVF experience. They put all their lens efforts into building the R and Z lines. This would make Pentax look like the brand of choice for those with a preference for OVFs.

In this scenario, I’m sure that most customers will eventually be moved over to a mirrorless camera fo their existing brand or another. Some others will just stay using their existing mount, even if the updates Canon and Nikon make to the system are minimal. However, if Ricoh can convince just 1% of them to try a Pentax, that would double their unit volume.

Whether this happens is largely dependent on how good the K-new is. It’s a ground-up redesign of the DSLR, and it’s probably going to be announced in about a month. So at this time, I feel that optimism is a more appropriate response than worrying about past market share.
I agree. At least for me, the Pentax future is brighter than some years ago. Even in the APS-C line - when they decided to release new high-end DA* lenses.


Last edited by cport; 09-20-2020 at 01:36 AM.
09-20-2020, 03:04 AM - 3 Likes   #54
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I think the question is how Pentax fares when they actually release some new SLRs. I wonder if they have sold many of the DFA *85 lenses. Certainly a number of folks on the Forum (including my wife and I) have ended up with one and it is an amazing lens, but quite pricey.

We also need to be clear that Pentax does not need to sell millions of cameras to turn a profit. Their budget is low. They spend little on advertising. In many ways, it is easier for a company like them to make a go of it than a company like Nikon. My guess is that the current economic down turn has hurt the big players a lot more than the little ones.

Pentax is a niche player and will continue as such, but that doesn't mean they won't continue and generate a profit on the imaging side of things.
09-21-2020, 03:13 AM   #55
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Does this mean that 35-40000 Pentax DSLRs have been sold globally?

QuoteOriginally posted by Mistral75 Quote
According to BCN (which collect data from POS, mainly electronic stores, and therefore favour entry-level cameras), the top three players in the 2019 DSLR market were as follows:
  1. Canon: 56.3%
  2. Nikon: 41.1%
  3. Pentax: 2.4%
Source: カメラ | BCN AWARD・BCN IT ジュニア賞

This would lead to some 7,000 Pentax DSLRs shipped by Ricoh to Japanese distributors in 2019. May be a bit more due to the bias mentioned above.

According to these figures around 20% of the Pentax production was for Japanese consumers in 2019.
09-21-2020, 03:33 AM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by edri Quote
Does this mean that 35-40000 Pentax DSLRs have been sold globally?
Sold as 'sold to end customers', no, but sold as 'shipped by Ricoh Imaging to importers and distributors', yes, that's what's implied.

Besides, this 40,000 figure for global Pentax camera shipments comes from a study made by Techno Systems Research Co., Ltd and quoted by Nikkei, not from BCN (which the message you quoted is about).

Last edited by Mistral75; 09-21-2020 at 03:44 AM.
09-21-2020, 07:01 AM   #57
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This here adds more detail versus the sensor formats:
2019 Mirrorless Camera Market: FUJIFILM is Solid Third with 500k Shipments Behind Sony (1.65 million) and Canon (940k) - Fuji Rumors

8 APSC DSLR versus 1 FF DSLR
9 APSC DSLM versus 1 FF DSLM

Though I admit I speculate that DSLM apsc contains mft as well.

Given that the push for FF has been going on for little less than 10 years already and the total FF share is as it is now, FF marketshare has grown by little more than +0,5% to +0,8% per year.

Give it a couple of decades and FF will draw even.
09-21-2020, 07:15 AM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by beholder3 Quote
This here adds more detail versus the sensor formats:
2019 Mirrorless Camera Market: FUJIFILM is Solid Third with 500k Shipments Behind Sony (1.65 million) and Canon (940k) - Fuji Rumors

8 APSC DSLR versus 1 FF DSLR
9 APSC DSLM versus 1 FF DSLM

(...)
Indeed that's the BCN report published some months ago about the Japanese market, as measured by the point of sales they monitor:
  • DSLR vs. mirrorless cameras: 37.9% vs. 62.1%
  • DSLRs: 10.6% 24x36 and bigger vs. 89.4% APS-C and smaller
  • Mirrorless cameras: 10.3% 24x36 and bigger vs. 89.7% APS-C and smaller
09-21-2020, 07:19 AM   #59
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No wonder as APS is good enough for most peoples needs.....
09-21-2020, 07:31 AM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pål Jensen Quote
No wonder as APS is good enough for most peoples needs.....
Not only that, it's certainly mostly entry-level bodies. Take the fact that manufacturers sell less than two lenses per camera: this means that a very significant portion of the population only ever buys a body in a one- or (sometimes) two-lens kit. If someone buys a camera to slap one lens of it and call it a day, they likely aren't buying that fancy X-T4, D7500 or A6600.
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