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07-27-2010, 06:36 PM   #16
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I agree with alot of what you all have said.

My personal view is that Pentax will release an EVIL full-frame camera in the near future. They have already invested in some new full-frame capable lenses ie. DFA 100mm and have the legacy lens designs as well they could dust off and give a digital coating to. As has been said, the reality is that FF sensors will be cheap enough in the very near future to accomodate sticking one in a k-7 like body and taking the mirror out. FF is a better image than APS-C and there is one overiding thing that everyone wants, and that is a better image. And EVIL is the way to go. The mirror is redundant and causes issues that can be avoided by it's removal. No real reason to leave it if the electronic viewfinder can keep up.

FF is the future of Pentax if Pentax is to have a future. I've already bet a fair mount of money on this i the form of lenses, and hope they don't dissapoint.

Cheers,

Jake

07-27-2010, 06:37 PM   #17
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Two points:

One of the larger camera stores in my neck of the woods has stopped selling Sony. At least they no longer have Sony products on their website.

I happened to find myself in a Sony Store the other day, and noticed the A850 on display. Having never held either the A900 or A850, I picked it up to see if the viewfinder was as great as people say. Within seconds the very helpfull salesman was there to see if I "had any questions".

Sure I said, Why do you have a crop sensor lens on a full frame camera?

So, with sony gone from real camera stores, and their top bodies being sold by TV salesman in malls, I don't see Sony having a bright future selling FF DSLRs.
07-27-2010, 07:59 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Will you buy a new Pentax K-? APS-C at $1,200 or the Canon FF at $1,500, or the Canon APS-H at $1,000? For new entrants, it's no question what brand they will choose.
Aristophanes, your points are all valid except this one - would Pentax be stupid enough to price K-? APS-C at $1000 when the Canon FF is selling at $1500? I would think around $600 is more likely. For new entrants who does not know much about the sensor size, lower price becomes the attractive point.
07-27-2010, 08:39 PM - 1 Like   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by aleonx3 Quote
Aristophanes, your points are all valid except this one - would Pentax be stupid enough to price K-? APS-C at $1000 when the Canon FF is selling at $1500? I would think around $600 is more likely. For new entrants who does not know much about the sensor size, lower price becomes the attractive point.
They could even give it to be sure that everyone get one. But then, where is the profit?
High end model of caamera are expensive to develop, because they are the ones introducing new thecnologies. When the price difference between a FF and an APS-C sensor will be close enough, camera's price will not be that much impacted by the kind of sensor inside. I guess that is Aristophanes's idea. And I totally agree with him.
Durng the last 2 years, DSLR market has evolved a lot. First by the release of small compact camera (Panasonic and Olympus m4/3, Sony NEX, Samsung NX). Then by the introduction of FF camera (canon 5DII, Nikon D700, Sony Alpha 850/900) that any enthusiast photographer can buy (today D700 cost less than 2000 dollars, the exact same price than D300s, in Japan).
And in the middle of that, Pentax is the only one to stick exclusively to APS-C. It is commonly said that a company that is not moving on is a dying company. I believe Pentax has (had, because probably revealed at Photokina) to do a choice. Are they going mainstream with a micro thing, where is the money today. Or are they going FF, where will be the money within a few years. They can't do both (alone, not talking about potential alliance) at the same time, each of them requesting new lines of lenses. Their choice to attack the MF market, let me think they are thinking to go FF. Many people say FF is a niche market with only 2% of global sales. Right. MF is even a much smaller market. And they make a lot of money with their cheap MF, simply because they developed it in parallel to their high end APS-C model (K7). Same electronics. They can do exactly the same for a FF body. Development cost would be really reduced compared to C and N. Then, of course do not expect to beat them on their strong points (AF, burst speed). But they can compete on IQ quality, which is, for me, the basics of... photography.

07-27-2010, 08:40 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Forget today's numbers. That's yesterday's sales data only. If the price of FF sensors gets down (and it will jus as all technology gets cheaper) then anyone not FF is in deep trouble.

The more FF's sell and become entrenched in the marketplace over the next few years, the more economy of scale FF will have. As I said before, if Canikon come out with a sub-$1,500 FF DSLR, Pentax will lose half their profit margins from their higher-end K-7 equivalent and especially the lenses to go with.

All you have to do is follow the cost/benefit ratio of the sensor costs and you see that FF is inevitable. Very soon the only technical elasticity (all cameras can do virtually the same thing as every other model from every other brand) will come from sensor size.
I would agree Pentax will probably reach a point where their APS-C cameras will get so good you will not be able to tell the difference between film and digital unless you use a microscope. I could imagine a 40 megapixel low noise camera for around $1,000.00 one day.

This however would make APS-C more attractive. It gives people better telephoto capabilities. I don't share your paradigm. If it becomes less expensive to manufacture a good FF camera, then Pentax just might jump into that market.

I read somewhere around here they filed for a patent on a FF design with anti-shake technology. Pentax probably has many patents in case it becomes necessary to exercise them one day depending on market conditions.
07-28-2010, 12:17 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Has anyone mentioned that just because the Sony camera division might no longer be making 135 format DSLRs, there is not necessarily a correlation between this and the Sony semiconductor division potentially ceasing production of 135 format sensors?
I was thinking along similar lines. Why does there necessarily have to be a fixed linkage between Sony DSLRs and Sony Sensor Design and Mfr. Couldn't Sony cease DSLR mfr and yet keep a Sensor Mfr division? If Sony is selling sensors to Nikon, Pentax and i'm not sure who else, I would expect that they are making money at this enterprise over and above the camera mfr.

Even if Sony decides to quit the camera and sensor business entirely, it doesn't necessarily follow that the Sony sensor business would end. Sony would more probably sell the sensor business, because it has value, to some other corporation. So a hypothetical ending of Sony FF sensor mfr, may just mean that Pentax will be buying them from whichever corporation buys that division from Sony.
07-28-2010, 12:45 AM   #22
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On a side note, I heard the wild rumor that Canon would be stopping FF sensors because of too many rejects from the process. Apparently, because of that you would be loosing money on every 5DmkII ever made.

I took this "rumor" with a huge pinch of salt especially since the 5DmkII is so successful, but the rumor reported for Sony looks to correlate.

One have to keep in mind that Sony produce the sensors for Nikon and for Pentax's K-x, so the success of their sensor producing division is not immediately depending on Sony's DSLR division. It is not impossible for Sony to stop FF DSLR while they keep producing FF sensors for Nikon.

Anyway if such a thing proves to be true (Canon can produce a 5DmkIII based on their higher end APSC-H sensors, still, I can't figure out how they can market it against the mkII) then Pentax was right not to invest in FF.

Anyway, Pentax 645D move was brilliant enough to force Mamiya to lower all their prices in an attempt to compete. If Pentax manages to sell enough volumes, then they probably can negotiate with Sony to produce a MF CMOS sensor and get an undisputed lead in MF market while not competing with Sony or Nikon. But this is wild speculation. Jut like the info this thread is based on I fear ^_-

Guillaume
07-28-2010, 03:04 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by ghelary Quote
But this is wild speculation. Jut like the info this thread is based on I fear ^_-
You said it. I just returned from holiday and was hoping for some rumors with substance here, but all I see is all these speculation threads.

07-28-2010, 06:29 AM   #24
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I've been playing with the camera in my cell phone lately ...

... and it's capable of producing surprisingly good images so long as there's good light. The moment the light drops off, forget about it! And of course DOF effects never get a look in.

But all these limitations are easy to bear with a device that I carry around anyway, and was moreover a free upgrade on my existing plan. Hence the meme about the impending death of compact cameras ... I know you've heard it before, so I won't repeat it.

Here's the thing. As these ubiquitous and (effectively) free cameras continue to improve, people will need a stronger justification for paying a lot of money for a DSLR. The DSLRs will need to clearly differentiate themselves. And this is where FF systems will become increasingly relevant in my view. FF systems are vastly better than any cell phone camera with respect to low light performance, DOF, shooting speed and tonality.

These are the features that will encourage people to invest in bulky and expensive systems when people are already carrying a serviceable camera for basic snapshots. And a FF system should be significantly better than an APS-C system in all of these respects, which in turn means that the FF system is more clearly differentiated within the marketplace.

The enthusiast market for DSLRs will be dominated by FF systems in five years' time, I'm sure. When people decide to pay a significant amount of money for a camera in addition to the cell phone in their pocket, they will prefer to pay for a system that most clearly differentiates itself.
07-28-2010, 07:04 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by asw66 Quote
Here's the thing. As these ubiquitous and (effectively) free cameras continue to improve, people will need a stronger justification for paying a lot of money for a DSLR. The DSLRs will need to clearly differentiate themselves.
They already have as history demonstrates.

I can get a new DSLR (Canon Xs or Nikon D60) new for about than $350 with kit lens.

It's simply not a "lot of money" anymore. A low-price DSLR now competes with higher-end P&S at price point. And an overwhelming step up in IQ from any cameraphone.
07-28-2010, 08:00 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by asw66 Quote
Here's the thing. As these ubiquitous and (effectively) free cameras continue to improve, people will need a stronger justification for paying a lot of money for a DSLR.
Oops...you had me up until this statement. I think that it won't be DSLRs who will suffer from increased photo quality on cellphones, but point-and-shoot cameras that will be in danger. If easy snapshots were all it took to destroy serious photography, it would have died about 50 years ago.
07-28-2010, 08:15 AM   #27
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Sensor Costs

Everyone seems to share an expectation that FF sensor prices will keep dropping. When you are talking about processor & memory chips that is true, but only because shrinking feature size allows more circuits to fit onto one die. Sensor chips already use a process size that is plenty small, and the overall chip dimensions are fixed.

With CMOS chips there are a lot of up-front costs (creating masks etc.), relative to the per-part production cost. The typical industry mask size is smaller than a FF chip; and so most current FF chips must stitch together two separate passes. There's a good discussion here:

Chipworks

So the price charged for a sensor will also depend on the volume of chips you can sell, to pay off the development costs. Sony may have overestimated how many of their own-brand FF cameras they could move.

You'll notice that to ramp up volumes, Sony has been very aggressive in selling its current 10 Mp 1/1.7 sensor,

Sony Global - CX-NEWS Vol.57

...which seems to be the one used in Canon's S90 and G11, the Ricoh GRD IIII, and Samsung's EX1/TL500. In comparison, that looks like a success story for their image-sensor business.
07-28-2010, 08:21 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by aleonx3 Quote
Aristophanes, your points are all valid except this one - would Pentax be stupid enough to price K-? APS-C at $1000 when the Canon FF is selling at $1500? I would think around $600 is more likely. For new entrants who does not know much about the sensor size, lower price becomes the attractive point.
That's what I don't get. If FF dropped so dramatically in price, wouldn't APS also receive price cuts? Canon and Nikon sell crop cameras too, would they force their user to upgrade and buy new lenses? Did P&S cameras die once DLSRs dropped in price? Makes no sense to me. Every photographer won't need FF, just like every photographer didn't need a medium or large format camera in the heyday of film. Just my opinion.
07-28-2010, 08:29 AM   #29
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The thing that needs to be said is that the Canon 7D is currently out selling the 5D MKII, despite being priced equivalently. I think there is plenty of life, even in high end APS C cameras, but they have to offer a special package in order to sell at that price point.
07-28-2010, 08:37 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
The thing that needs to be said is that the Canon 7D is currently out selling the 5D MKII, despite being priced equivalently. I think there is plenty of life, even in high end APS C cameras, but they have to offer a special package in order to sell at that price point.
Here in europe they have a price difference of 600 - 780$
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