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05-24-2013, 04:24 PM   #1681
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QuoteOriginally posted by redrockcoulee Quote
And neither Canon nor Nkon really have to do any marketing on any single model as they have a much bigger presence on store shelves and peoples minds. Even if Pentax comes out with the very best camera in any one class, and provided the very best marketing for that model, it is unlikely to outsell either Nikon or Canon. Unless it was truly revolutionary that it. It might do very well but I do not think it will outsell makes that are more familiar wiith most people.
And this is why I say the brand can be tarnished by the Q. It's an otherwise excellent camera, but Pentax has survived to this day because it has an excellent engineering pedigree, not a marketing one. Of the Troika that decide product lines, the marketing guys and the bean counters came up with the Q (smaller sensor = cheaper if the P&S crowd is your main market), while the engineers got left out. They made a technically excellent system, but NO amount of marketing is going to put that on a shelf next to a lesser priced m43 or NEX and try and sell it on equivalent merits. I suspect the marketing Department mis-read the competition and the bean counters forgot to double-check (probably out drinking with their Hoya buddies).

05-24-2013, 07:33 PM   #1682
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Anyone have an idea of when the new APS-C model is going to be released? Rumours have been going on since early March that it'll be released the same month, but it's already late May. Are there any camera conferences or anything happening this summer? Things that might point to a possible release?
05-24-2013, 07:49 PM   #1683
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QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
"And neither Canon nor Nikon really have to do any marketing on any single model as they have a much bigger presence on store shelves and peoples minds" - a reason for that may be that Canon seem to sell about 20 per cent of their imaging devices to Japan, 27 per cent to the Americas and 29 per cent to Europe. Nikon's figures aren't dissimilar, i.e. the Americas plus Europe account for 50-60 per cent of revenue, so they now have a blanket presence. By contrast, Pentax appears to sell around 90 per cent to Japan and less than 10 per cent to both the Americas and Europe combined (at least, extrapolated from Ricoh's recent financial statements). Pentax is simply not an international player in the way the other two are. Until that changes, if ever it does, Pentax will be constrained in what it can do. If Pentax develops projects which demand much bigger volumes than the market in Japan can manage, in order to secure a return on the investment, where are the extra sales going to come from? And if they need to devote a lot of extra dollars to marketing in the Americas and Europe, how can that be justified when these territories contribute barely 10 per cent of revenues? Even if a "revolutionary" product did come along, it doesn't look as if Pentax has the infrastructure to sell it worldwide, so why would they launch it?

Honestly, until these ratios start to look a bit more like those turned in by the industry leaders, I'm not expecting anything dramatic or "revolutionary" from Pentax. Some nice cameras, yes, but no sudden expansion and nothing which isn't on a fairly evolutionary basis and which customers outside of Japan are going to have to dig out from a few far-flung dealers. At present Pentax seem to be limited in their ambitions by what the size of their home market can bear. Perhaps part of the current restlessness is that people were hoping the arrival of Ricoh would break the lock on this door but so far, well ...
I can't help but think that that extrapolation of Ricoh's financial data is somehow not right. It's inconceivable that 90% of their camera revenue comes from Japan.
05-24-2013, 07:51 PM   #1684
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Pentax has survived to this day because it has an excellent engineering pedigree, not a marketing one.
You could say the same for Leica, Voigtlander and Zeiss.

05-24-2013, 08:28 PM   #1685
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QuoteOriginally posted by IchabodCrane Quote
I can't help but think that that extrapolation of Ricoh's financial data is somehow not right. It's inconceivable that 90% of their camera revenue comes from Japan.
That's very much what I'd like to think and in that case I'll happily revise/remove the posts. However on page A3 of the Financial Highlights/Appendix to their 2013 results, Ricoh give these figures for "Other" which they define a few lines later as "digital cameras" in the section "2. Consolidated Sales by Product Category".

2012 2013 (in millions of Yen)

Other 134,325 146,012
Percentage of net sales (%) 7.0 7.7 (apparently, the percentage contributed by this unit's revenue to the whole company's revenue)
Domestic 121,823 130,100
Overseas 12,502 15,912
The Americas 2,415 4,279
Europe, Middle East and Africa 5,595 7,069
Other 4,492 4,564

So it appears that in 2013 domestic sales were 130,100 and overseas sales were 15,912 of total sales of 146,012 which is a split of 89/11.

On page A4, Ricoh forecast that next year, total sales of "Other" will be 151,000 of which domestic will be 131,900 and overseas 19.1, a split of 87/13.

[Edit: information superceded, see this post]

Last edited by mecrox; 05-25-2013 at 10:30 AM.
05-24-2013, 09:16 PM   #1686
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QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
That's very much what I'd like to think and in that case I'll happily revise/remove the posts. However on page A3 of the Financial Highlights/Appendix to their 2013 results, Ricoh give these figures for "Other" which they define a few lines later as "digital cameras" in the section "2. Consolidated Sales by Product Category".

2012 2013 (in millions of Yen)

Other 134,325 146,012
Percentage of net sales (%) 7.0 7.7 (apparently, the percentage contributed by this unit's revenue to the whole company's revenue)
Domestic 121,823 130,100
Overseas 12,502 15,912
The Americas 2,415 4,279
Europe, Middle East and Africa 5,595 7,069
Other 4,492 4,564

So it appears that in 2013 domestic sales were 130,100 and overseas sales were 15,912 of total sales of 146,012 which is a split of 89/11.

On page A4, Ricoh forecast that next year, total sales of "Other" will be 151,000 of which domestic will be 131,900 and overseas 19.1, a split of 87/13.
I must have missed it but I don't see where "Other" is claimed to be nothing but the camera business. If it includes something else (it must otherwise it wouldn't be called Other) which is Japan-only then the regional splits for the camera business may be quite different.
05-24-2013, 09:20 PM   #1687
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote

Q is important to Pentax. It is a market niche. You and Aristophanes and a few others can scoff at the 1/2.3 sensor - and perhaps rightly - but they sell some and plan to sell more. I see nothing wrong with that if they can make it happen, so long as they also continue to support and develop the K-mount and 645, as Jim emphatically stated they do, and would continue so to do.

Misquoting him (actually, misquoting me), then calling him a butthead adds nothing positive to the discussion
Let it be...
But.....The prime Q 8.5/1.9 is suddenly disappeared The main prime lens for Q system is gone and there is no replacement. This prime makes the camera very compact.
Explain me, please.
Who is the ruler of Pentax marketing? How can it be? To remove without replacement.

The samples of suddenly stopped interesting lines of Pentax products are a lot of...

We see now - DA limited primes line is stopped. DA* primes and zooms line is stopped. The flashes system is the worst at the market.
K-01 line is stopped. GXR line is stopped (?). XS lenses line is stopped.
Low-end DSLR is stopped. Top-crop - where is it? No any comments from Ricoh Pentax.
But a lot of demagogy about Q and new "never be" products.

Ricoh Pentax - it seems to me - thinks about non-Japanese market very rare...

What can we buy in the niche from USD500 till USD3000? I mean - DSLR.
K-30 and K-5II. It's all. Is it the choice?

Last edited by ogl; 05-24-2013 at 09:30 PM.
05-24-2013, 09:22 PM   #1688
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QuoteOriginally posted by ElJamoquio Quote
Thanks for the summary. I'd put it in these categories:


Too expensive to matter to most of us on the forum:


'Beneath' the target market of most of this forum:



Stuff I didn't personally care about, others could/should disagree:



Poorly designed stuff, IMO:




Re-works of older stuff, rebranding



Mildly interesting stuff
  • MX-1
  • K-5 II and K-5 IIs (really, how much difference is there between these and a K-5)
  • K-30 (really, how much difference is there between this and a K-5)
  • DA 50mm/f1.8

So, in my parsing of the list, there's 4 things that I could likely care about. In reality only the K-5IIs comes close to the 'I might buy it' level, and in reality it didn't pass that test.

Pentax isn't doomed, and of course I'm only one person; but I think there's lots of other people like me and I think most of them shoot Canon or Nikon.
Well-done, +100.

05-24-2013, 09:40 PM   #1689
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The K-5II and the K-5IIs were both temporary solutions to keep somewhat updated product on the shelf as the market moved on. They are the last of the Hoya legacy (for better or worse). Ricoh is running out of time to produce product that takes the step forward needed to bring excitement to the brand. I think they were caught off guard by the economical full frames by Canon and Nikon.

I don't think Pentax can go into the 4qtr of this year without something exciting that show that Ricoh is serious about cameras.... well, they could, but it would be pretty bad for the brand. Bringing out a new telescope/lens and some more colors for the Q isn't going to cut it.

05-24-2013, 09:43 PM - 1 Like   #1690
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
You could say the same for Leica, Voigtlander and Zeiss.
Hah, almost .. but Leica's marketing beats both Pentax and Ricoh to dust.
Leica is totally marketing aware company. They do give a damn about the brand perception a lot. They are announcing a new camera category, in between the X2 and the M-type. Whatever it is, it is exactly what users wanted for some time. To close the gap between two extremes.

And Leica made it. They are small, in fact microscopic in manpower compared to Ricoh, but hey! – Leica even has its stores around world, in major cities! Their marketing brain just works; give people an excuse to go and try the camera, not an excuse to buy something else instead, like Pentax does.

It's that simple. In the meantime, Pentax's best marketing since Pentax Ricoh merger is a video by Kai and Lok, of the DigitalRev, and one posted by Heie in the middle of Afghanistan. Those two videos will be most viewed videos with anything Pentax related.

Last edited by Uluru; 05-24-2013 at 09:57 PM.
05-24-2013, 09:51 PM   #1691
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
The K-5II and the K-5IIs were both temporary solutions to keep somewhat updated product on the shelf as the market moved on. They are the last of the Hoya legacy (for better or worse). Ricoh is running out of time to produce product that takes the step forward needed to bring excitement to the brand. I think they were caught off guard by the economical full frames by Canon and Nikon.
You can also call that pure incompetence and lack of good insight. They are supposed to know that — that is their job!
Frank Lumo was preaching about the economy of full-frame for three years already in PF!

So far, judging by lack of results in the last 2 years, Ricoh shows that they lack some good wits in serious system camera planning, announcement and development. Otherwise, they'd never deliver their GRX.

History shows: Ricoh does not know how to develop, market and establish a meaningful camera system. But Pentax knows. If they were messing up with Pentax's plans and development, no wonder it takes forever to get something out.
05-24-2013, 09:59 PM   #1692
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
You can also call that pure incompetence and lack of good insight. They are supposed to know that that is their job!
\Frank Lumo was preaching about the economy of full-frame for three years already in PF!

So far, judging by lack of results in the last 2 years, Ricoh shows that they'd be better in goat herding than in serious system camera planning and development.
It has been 2 years since the acquisition was announced. I don't believe Ricoh took control until the late fall. Probably a year and a half of actual control of the company and the first 6 months was purely organizational.

Hopefully Pentax had ambitious projects already on the board and Ricoh had given the green light. We might see something exciting announced by the end of the year. I really hope the leadership has clear direction and dedication..... to the right ideas.
05-24-2013, 10:25 PM   #1693
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
It has been 2 years since the acquisition was announced. I don't believe Ricoh took control until the late fall. Probably a year and a half of actual control of the company and the first 6 months was purely organizational.

Hopefully Pentax had ambitious projects already on the board and Ricoh had given the green light. We might see something exciting announced by the end of the year. I really hope the leadership has clear direction and dedication..... to the right ideas.
Well, one thing we do know the Ricoh's own "my prrrrecioooous GR" was released soon after the Coolpix A, and judging by all reviews and impressions from the net, it seems to me they have hurried up. Many tiny things could still be polished up in GR but they didn't want to fall too far behind the wake of the Coolpix A.

BUT, Nikon D7100 was announced, and there's no hurry to answer with anything from Pentax. It doesn't really matter ... Why should they hurry? It's not the precious GR.
05-24-2013, 10:31 PM   #1694
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Well, one thing we do know the Ricoh's own "my prrrrecioooous GR" was released soon after the Coolpix A, and judging by all reviews and impressions from the net, it seems to me they have hurried up. Many tiny things could still be polished up in GR but they didn't want to fall too far behind the wake of the Coolpix A.

BUT, Nikon D7100 was announced, and there's no hurry to answer with anything from Pentax. It doesn't really matter ... Why should they hurry? It's not the precious GR.
But the D7100 is really not any better than the K-5IIs. The D7100 is not what Pentax is concerned with... or at least I hope not.


I don't think Pentax wants to release another APS-C high spec camera until Canon releases the 7DII.
05-24-2013, 10:46 PM   #1695
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
But the D7100 is really not any better than the K-5IIs. The D7100 is not what Pentax is concerned with... or at least I hope not. I don't think Pentax wants to release another APS-C high spec camera until Canon releases the 7DII.
C'mon, in video features alone Nikon is a better camera. AF in normal light, tracking, continuous focus, Nikon is far better. 24MP is also better to fight Moire and deliver more detail overall. Etc. I would personally love to have a 24MP camera from Pentax, because I want details, I need more information for cropping.

DigitalRev guys were very considerate, and didn't go in too many details that may show K5-II is actually old tech in some important matters.

And yes, Pentax needs to change the name of its focusing system in the next revamp; SAFOX name is ridiculous and is too old anyway.
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