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05-04-2010, 01:22 PM   #106
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I agree that Pentax needs FF.
The main reason today is prestige.

But ...
From what I have heard, Sony makes absolutely no money with the A850/A900, to the contrary.
ATM they sell about 5 units of them per month in Germany!

So, do you think Pentax has the power to do this, too? Just for prestige?
No.

But ...
What I can see is a Samsung FF camera. They have the power to compete with Sony.

05-04-2010, 01:33 PM   #107
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QuoteOriginally posted by Supernaut Quote
The Sony850 is $1800 today. I'm very far from picking numbers out of thin air. Why would the price drop suddenly stop? $1500 is next generation FF.
1. Unless you have some inside knowledge of future pricing it's impossible for you to say with certitude what the (fictional) Pentax full-frame will cost. Therefore you are indeed pulling numbers out of the air. I have no idea why it is so hard to admit that. And likewise I know that I am guessing when I say I will be able to buy a 645D or equivalent for $2000.

2. If FF prices drop then so do the prices for cameras with even smaller sensors. There will still be a differential. And no, you cannot predict what it will be.

3. Why would price drops stop suddenly? Looked at what happened to Pentax lens prices over the past two years. They doubled in some cases. And that is the future for a company looking to make higher margins while having minuscule market share.
05-04-2010, 01:43 PM   #108
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QuoteOriginally posted by Samsungian Quote
I'll guess most Pentaxians leave Pentax due to lack of 24x36 sensor

Or I'll guess Pentaxians who add a second brand of gear thesedays is due to 24x36 sensor availablity from Canon, Nikon, Sony, Leica.

Canon and Nikon and Sony and Leica owners have an obvious upgrade path.

Well, and so do Pentaxians, they can choose Canon or Nikon or Sony or Leica or as seems to be popular to suggest:

"drop $9500 on a Japan market 33x44mm 645D"

So

K-7 at B&H is $868

&

645D Japan market camera is $9,500

Seems there's a huge hole in the Pentax line up that full frame could address?
The real hole that Pentax needs to address if they want to keep people like Steve is not full frame. It is a combination of low light capability, fast auto focus and professional support. As of right now, in particular, the last item seems to be quite lacking. All of Pentax's cameras currently are "semi-pro" or below. Even the new 645 D is considered only a semi-pro camera, marketed at wealthy enthusiasts.

I am sure that Hoya is working behind the scenes to figure out if it is worth it to come out with pro camera and support it as such. It certainly would take a lot of money and big change in mentality if they did.
05-04-2010, 02:07 PM   #109
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QuoteOriginally posted by rparmar Quote
1. Unless you have some inside knowledge of future pricing it's impossible for you to say with certitude what the (fictional) Pentax full-frame will cost. Therefore you are indeed pulling numbers out of the air. I have no idea why it is so hard to admit that. And likewise I know that I am guessing when I say I will be able to buy a 645D or equivalent for $2000.

2. If FF prices drop then so do the prices for cameras with even smaller sensors. There will still be a differential. And no, you cannot predict what it will be.

3. Why would price drops stop suddenly? Looked at what happened to Pentax lens prices over the past two years. They doubled in some cases. And that is the future for a company looking to make higher margins while having minuscule market share.
All I'm saying is that technology has evolved from the day we tamed fire and made our first tools. And in a ever more rapid pace the last decades. I never thought anyone would object to this basic trend. Nor mark words (numbers in this case).

05-04-2010, 03:36 PM   #110
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QuoteOriginally posted by eurostar Quote
What if Pentax 24x36 is built over 645 bayonet to offer a faster (AF and fps) alternative or companion to the 645 digital? Wouldn't make sense for Pentax enlarge the user base of the digital "medium format", creating new, faster 645 lenses instead of creating a third line (after APS-C and 645) of lenses?
I have thought about this and I think it would be a good move by Pentax to introduce a FF DSLR that could use the 645 glass. It would open up a much bigger market for the glass and help keep prices down. Plus it offers the much debated upgrade path. Once you buy the glass you can move between systems as needed.
05-04-2010, 05:11 PM   #111
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QuoteOriginally posted by rparmar Quote
1. Unless you have some inside knowledge of future pricing it's impossible for you to say with certitude what the (fictional) Pentax full-frame will cost. Therefore you are indeed pulling numbers out of the air. I have no idea why it is so hard to admit that. And likewise I know that I am guessing when I say I will be able to buy a 645D or equivalent for $2000.

2. If FF prices drop then so do the prices for cameras with even smaller sensors. There will still be a differential. And no, you cannot predict what it will be.

3. Why would price drops stop suddenly? Looked at what happened to Pentax lens prices over the past two years. They doubled in some cases. And that is the future for a company looking to make higher margins while having minuscule market share.
Price is a function of demand backstopped by production/distribution/marketing costs. With common component sourcing, prices rarely vary due to manufacturing prowess.

So if you want a benchmark for pricing on a Pentax FF, the Nikon D700.

Prices for APS-C will drop as far as their component costs+, + shared margins. No more. Loss leaders are unknown in this biz on newer generation models. Companies would rather buy back and scrap inventory than cannibalize future sales.

Most price fluctuations have to do with:

1) Currency fluctuations. Every major (and especially public) company is hedging cash against the gyrations. You buy now, you're paying into their internal retained earning for currency hedging.

2) The credit crunch. Yes, it's still on (watch the M3 supply). It's retailers and distributors who have bare shelves, but the effect is everywhere.

3) Deflation. There is substantial, worldwide overcapacity in manufacturing. Companies know this and are deliberately reducing supply and paying down debt as fast as possible if this gets entrenched. If deflation cycles in, it is better to start from a high point than lower in price wars.

You will not see price wars right now. The price drops of 2007-2008 were caused by the un-declared recession and credit crunch as companies shed inventory for cash ASAP. We will see continued high prices relatively to earning power and product availability. After 2010, now that I cannot predict :-)

Last edited by Aristophanes; 05-04-2010 at 07:02 PM.
05-04-2010, 05:44 PM   #112
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
You will not see price wars right now. The price drops of 2007-2008 were caused by the un-declared recession and credit crunch as companies shed inventory for cash ASAP. We will see continued high prices relatively to earning power and product availability.
That makes sense. And you're from Dartmouth so I trust you. Plus, if you don't mind me saying, you have a nice bust.
05-04-2010, 05:47 PM   #113
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QuoteOriginally posted by Supernaut Quote
All I'm saying is that technology has evolved from the day we tamed fire and made our first tools.
That's all you're saying? Sheesh!

05-04-2010, 05:59 PM   #114
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
Arpe, it's off-topic, but want to know:
Why not Canon or Sony? I heard their AF tracking capability is superior to Nikon's. But this could be wrong of course.
Wow! You guys were busy while I was asleep!
I have a built-in anti-Sony thing, not exactly sure why. Their "Memory sticks" don't help. Plus I've used my sister's A100 and it felt terrible. Plus I'm not convinced how long they will stick the SLR thing out.

So it's down to the 7D or D300s.
  • I don't like CF cards (my sister has had 2 bent pins in her cam), they are big. I can reuse my SD cards in the D300s.
  • The Canon doesn't have focus assist light (just the flash).
  • I used to have a Nikon F65 and liked it.
  • 7D has no user-definable Auto-ISO
  • Canon has those horrible white lenses!
  • Canon just give me the wobblies more than Nikon
  • Rumour has it the Nikon flash system is better
So it's no one big thing, but an accumulation of smaller things that would sway me.
05-04-2010, 06:29 PM   #115
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arpe Quote
So it's no one big thing, but an accumulation of smaller things that would sway me.
Thanks and I can follow your line of reason.

I would just be cautious if the step between K-7 and D300s AF performance isn't small compared to the step between D300s and 7D. If it is AF indeed why you want to change. At least for cars driving at 100 km/h, AF.C at K-7 and D300 wasn't different. Only the D300 burst was faster, of course. Maybe, you try it out first.
05-04-2010, 07:45 PM   #116
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QuoteOriginally posted by rparmar Quote
Some of these proposed scenarios are hilarious, especially the ones that go "If a FF was the same price as an APS-C which one would you buy?" Because a FF is never going to be the same price as APS-C. If the price of one comes down, so will the other, not only for cost reasons but so the manufacturers can differentiate their markets.
That wasn't my point. My point is, there is a price point, which at the moment is about $1,500, where the advanced amateur is spending their money. We have the D300 and the 7D at this price point and loads of semi pros and adsvanced amateurs are purchasing them. They baulk at going higher to the D700s and 5D's.

So, at the moment, those purchasers who would normally purchase a high end APS C camera would certainly purchase a FF camera at this price point over a similarly priced, sized and specced APS C camera. They will still spend this amount because that is what they have to spend especially when they know they can get a FF camera at that level. Now do you get it?

This is the price point at which Pentax could have many customers and users, but they will lose this market completely if Canon, Nikon and Sony have FF cameras. These users will be lost forever, never to return as they will then build up a relationship with those manufacturers.
05-04-2010, 08:47 PM   #117
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lance B Quote
That wasn't my point. My point is, there is a price point, which at the moment is about $1,500, where the advanced amateur is spending their money.
For many years the market clearing price point for a PC was $1899. Technology progressed and models were introduced, but the price of an upgraded new model was always $1899.

Until the market was fully saturated and even my grandmother had a PC, MSWord and an email address; then price competition began.

I suspect the DSLR market is similarly still somewhere on the path of "feature competition at a price point" of evolution. Can't say when nor even if the market will ever become saturated.
05-04-2010, 09:26 PM   #118
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
For many years the market clearing price point for a PC was $1899. Technology progressed and models were introduced, but the price of an upgraded new model was always $1899.

Until the market was fully saturated and even my grandmother had a PC, MSWord and an email address; then price competition began.

I suspect the DSLR market is similarly still somewhere on the path of "feature competition at a price point" of evolution. Can't say when nor even if the market will ever become saturated.
You could very well be correct. This makes it even more important that Pentax get into the FF mode as that price level would make it even more relative.
05-04-2010, 10:36 PM   #119
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lance B Quote
You could very well be correct. This makes it even more important that Pentax get into the FF mode as that price level would make it even more relative.
What I don't understand is why it's vital for Pentax entering in the FF arena, and not for Canon and Nikon entering the Medium Format one. Both are very small niche segment of the market, while most of the sales volume is made of entry level SRL.

I mean, aside the fact that most of the posters of a DSRL forum obviously want a FF camera...
05-04-2010, 11:04 PM   #120
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QuoteOriginally posted by eurostar Quote
What I don't understand is why it's vital for Pentax entering in the FF arena, and not for Canon and Nikon entering the Medium Format one. Both are very small niche segment of the market, while most of the sales volume is made of entry level SRL.

I mean, aside the fact that most of the posters of a DSRL forum obviously want a FF camera...
MF camera are using different lenses, therefore the "public" for this kind of camera is different from the one using DSLR, pro users or not.
That's why Canon, Nikon and Sony can skip this market.
But FF camera are using the same lenses (at least the same mount) than APS-C camera. So, when you have the higher APS-C model of your brand (k-7 or K20D, sharing the same sensor), if you want to get better IQ (as better DR and better high ISO, and NO K-x sensor is not a big improvement compare to K20D sensor, at least not in RAW), the only way to get it is... a FF camera.
I want a much better camera for low light conditions and higher DR in normal light conditions. None APS-C camera actually on the market (nor D300s and 7D) is able to give me what I want. The only one is D700. Many pentaxian are thinking in the same way than me. Some already left Pentax to get what they want/need.
For Pentax, FF in not a step to get big money today, it's a step to keep enthusiast costumers, the ones spending lot of money in high level equipment. Many already left. A lot are planning to do soon.
Then, Pentax (Hoya) is not stupid and can understand that. But their problem is the ability of GOOD FF sensors... Here, most people are talking of D700 as a reference. But I am afraid that kind of sensor will not be available for Pentax (even Sony seems not allowed to use it). I think, probably, if Pentax release a FF camera, it will use the 24Mpxl sensor from alpha 850/900. Good for studio and controlled light conditions, but not good for what I want...
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