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12-30-2011, 06:24 AM - 1 Like   #226
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QuoteOriginally posted by Clinton Quote
Sure, as long as it is fully supported, and has autofocus capability. Keep in mind, that AF motor is going to have to go somewhere.
You lose the OVF.

Is that a compromise you are willing to make?

The silliness in this discussion is the either/or dynamic, as if the market is decisive one way or the other because ALL consumers vote with their $$$'s exactly the same way.

from what I can see in market data, M43 has taken a modest slice from traditional DSLR's, but no more than that. DSLR's sales are overall increasing. The pie is still getting bigger because APS-C sensor commoditization and sunk cost dynamics (those pesky mirrors and old school PDAF) have been paid for 50x over. Profits are very good for camera makers in the midst of a worldwide economic pseudo-crisis.

The idea that mirrorless will entirely replace DSLR's in the near term is not going to happen. I suspect the manufacturing cost difference between the mirrorless and the well-paid for mirror box system is not all that great, and will be a factor in the very long run, but is apparently not a profit determinant in the near to medium term. The DSLR still has legs, in large part because it has such a vast installed user base.

The trump card for mirrorless is not form factor or manufacturing costs of the body. It is flexibility and lens costs. The latter are very costly to set up for sufficient ROI on the design and manufacturing side, but the long term smaller lenses will impact everything from sales appeal to inventory and shipping costs. The real kick for mirrorless is in the flexibility, especially video but also retrograde backward compatibility, macro, and manual focus.

Nevertheless there is likely to be market space for the larger camera with an OVF. A great number of monied hobbyists and pros very much like hands on gear with substantial tactile feedback systems and the near-perfect DR and latency of the OVF. The SLR form factor and design is the the most flexible pure photographic system ever developed. It can do macro to tele, wide angle to portrait and everything in between. I don't see its demise anytime soon.

There is no doubt that Nikon and Canon will continue to support this market and may offer a mirrorless path in the near future. Certainly Nikon has staked some space here with the X1, cautious not to tread on their legacy DSLR space. Both companies want to sell you more than one camera (D300 and D700 and a D3x).

Pentax/Ricoh's issue is the capacity to support the K-mount installed base simultaneous with mirrorless developments. Adapters are kludges that always limit the experience. Few sell well. So I advise people ehre top stop thinking of a single body that can do it all and look more at the issue of the market splitting and whether Pentax/Ricoh can support both with 5% of the Canikon market share. This is the fundamental the dilemma and the most critical aspect for those with lots of K-mount glass.

What disturbs me most in the interview is virtually no outright support for the K-mount. I fully agree that Pentax is dead as a brand if it abandons its current K-mount user base for newer tech alone. The brand has nowhere near enough cachet to make that leap.

12-30-2011, 06:26 AM   #227
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Fogel70:
From your post, I understand that mirrorless don't stand a chance without going into a price war; then, the DSLR must be the better technology Well, compared with the cheapest mirrorless which don't have a viewfinder at all, they certainly are.
For now, Pentax has two ways of countering the MILCs with it's entry level DSLRs (and both are mentioned in the interview):
- make them smaller (hopefully they'll only make them thinner; otherwise they're small enough)
- put better viewfinders even in entry level cameras. It seems Pentax found a cheap way to make 100% viewfinders (using SR for precise calibration)
That should work for now.

By the way, I see you have some very nice K-mount lenses. Would you gladly pay let's say 280 euro (the price of the Sony's AF adapter) just to be able to use them, with AF and hopefully no functionality loss?

Aristophanes, the interviewer pushed hard the discussion towards mirrorless so of course they talked a lot about it (non-committal stuff) - but in the end, you can see smaller DSLRs and 100% (optical) viewfinders being mentioned. I doubt the K-mount will be abandoned.

Last edited by Kunzite; 12-30-2011 at 06:32 AM.
12-30-2011, 06:33 AM   #228
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
I get the feeling that Fuji is going to build on the X100 success with the new X1 and the organic APS-C sensor.
I just got the X10 for Xmas. I like it as much as the X100 for different reasons. Wow Fuji really is on a roll. I'm already cataloging the little Pentax DSLR stuff I have left to sell when the new Fuji comes out.

I used to be a fence sitter on the Full Frame. I think if Pentax wants to continue with the DSLR the FF supporters are correct. There's just not enough difference between say the X100 or the GXR to justify a DSLR in that sensor size. I haven't tried a NEX 7 but I'm sure it's a great camera. I love my D700 but to be honest I usually use the GXR or X100. It's great for portrait work though. The K5 is just collecting dust at this point. I'm waiting to see what Fuji has for lenses for the new camera, but I feel certain the rest of the Pentax gear is gone once it's released. If Sony had more than one good lens I probably would have gone withe NEX 7. Supposedly Fuji is releasing three lenses for the new body.
12-30-2011, 06:39 AM   #229
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote


Aristophanes, the interviewer pushed hard the discussion towards mirrorless so of course they talked a lot about it (non-committal stuff) - but in the end, you can see smaller DSLRs and 100% (optical) viewfinders being mentioned. I doubt the K-mount will be abandoned.
If anything I think when it came to the DSLR discussion K mount was a given.

As for the Mirrorless K-mount issue What global standards body has ruled that all mirrorless must be ridiculously compact form factors that lack ergonomics. hte nex system is way way way to thin for comfortable use, the olys are too TINY IMO. Panasonic the same, though they do have their more dslr like models which are better form factor (for me anyway). No reason their couldn't be a marginally smaller form factor WR well built FF mirrorless the size of a K5 that uses K mount. it would be unique in the FF market

12-30-2011, 06:46 AM   #230
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Tell people it's new so that's why it's "better", even if obviously crippled* - that's the trend these days Being useful, working as a camera should - that's irrelevant.
* no-viewfinder cameras are crippled, IMHO. Yes, there is an optional viewfinder attachment... which is quite expensive, which will prevent using an external flash and which you'll have to re-buy when your next camera won't be able to use it or a much better EVF attachment will appear.
12-30-2011, 07:02 AM   #231
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
By the way, I see you have some very nice K-mount lenses. Would you gladly pay let's say 280 euro (the price of the Sony's AF adapter) just to be able to use them, with AF and hopefully no functionality loss?
I would not get a mirrorless camera to use with k-mount lenses. I would get a mirrorless system and use it with lenses designed for it.
Sure I sometimes would use some of my other lenses on it, but for me the manual focus aid for legacy lenses is enough.

If I want full support of my k-mount lenses a DSLR is the best solution IMO.
12-30-2011, 07:23 AM   #232
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In other words, it would make no difference if the MILC is made by Pentax or e.g. Sony/Olympus/Panasonic/Samsung. Current K-mount users will not automatically migrate to a Pentax MILC.
12-30-2011, 07:37 AM   #233
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
In other words, it would make no difference if the MILC is made by Pentax or e.g. Sony/Olympus/Panasonic/Samsung. Current K-mount users will not automatically migrate to a Pentax MILC.
Exactly as I've been saying ^^. There's absolutely no reason for a K-mount user to choose the Pentax MILC.

And: assuming the MILC will cut into entry-level DSLR the most, and if Pentax gets a lot of bread buttered by the Kx-level DSLR sales - there goes a big chunk of K-mount lens sales. K-mount needs to find a healthy, margin-rich tier above the mirrorless fray. FF fits that bill.


.


Last edited by jsherman999; 12-30-2011 at 07:42 AM.
12-30-2011, 07:53 AM   #234
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
In other words, it would make no difference if the MILC is made by Pentax or e.g. Sony/Olympus/Panasonic/Samsung. Current K-mount users will not automatically migrate to a Pentax MILC.
My assertion is that there will need to be 2 systems side-by-side regardless.

Right now the tactic for Nikon and Pentax is for MILC to be smaller than the DSLR APS-C standard (FF is another matter entirely).

Sony is doing both, with their NEX and SLT systems at APS-C dimensions (and a conspicuous hiatus from FF). Tellingly, the NEX-7 is not fundamentally smaller than many APS-C DSLR's.

The issue for Pentax is whether there is enough market share and gross sales to support dual APS-C MILC and DSLR systems. The Q says "not yet" as does the Nikon mirrorless system.

FF makes the problem substantially more difficult because it cannot, by definition of much higher prices, expand market share; in fact, FF would shift unit volumes from either/or APS-C DSLR (a few K-5 owners upping their purchases) and any MILC offering similar to the APS-C offerings by Sony. A big problem for Pentax would be in the sub-$2,000 range. An ideal APS-C market spread would offer 3 price points of DSLR and 1-2 models of MILC. Pentax can only do so with their DSLR offerings by NOS inventory of an older model (K-r and K-x coexisting for awhile).

The real problem for all of these options in a multiplied market like this is lens development as MILC requires its own options and FF would require a huge reinvestment ins a very small market share. And APS-C DSLR (the current cash cow by a country mile) would still require development on par with Canikon. The risk is cannibalization for Pentax with their market share simply not able to grow market share as every other manufacturer is doing likewise.

One interesting hint I did get from the interview was regarding mirrorless medium format, or the migration of the 645D to MILC. The read I get from this is that Pentax is not going to compete with Hasselblad or Phase One/Mamiya toe-to-toe, but with FF from Canikon/Sony. But that's a long ways off in reality.
12-30-2011, 08:02 AM   #235
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
And: assuming the MILC will cut into entry-level DSLR the most, and if Pentax gets a lot of bread buttered by the Kx-level DSLR sales - there goes a big chunk of K-mount lens sales. K-mount needs to find a healthy, margin-rich tier above the mirrorless fray. FF fits that bill.
But all MILC offerings to date have been at price points above entry level DSLR.

In fact, the Canikon offerings have gotten less expensive than M43. Canon is even offering 3 entry-level tiers and Nikon 2. And they are continuing to develop low-end glass, especially primes, for this market.

That's why Nikon went with a smaller sensor MILC. And why Canon is hesitating. Their sunk cost DSLR systems are so cheap to produce with near-total ROI that any MILC with its new tech and R&D costs are difficult in the short to medium term to amortize with equal or even close ROI.

It's very difficult to get around the rock bottom costs of the APS-C sensor. It's driving all margins now, including for Pentax. FF would shrink the market share which is exactly Pentax's vexing problem.

I am not seeing a "mirrorless fray" yet. Not when a Nikon D3000/Canon T1i is on sale with kit lens at $349. I see MILC as an option in multi-faceted market.

Last edited by Aristophanes; 12-30-2011 at 08:08 AM.
12-30-2011, 08:35 AM   #236
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Exactly as I've been saying ^^. There's absolutely no reason for a K-mount user to choose the Pentax MILC.

And: assuming the MILC will cut into entry-level DSLR the most, and if Pentax gets a lot of bread buttered by the Kx-level DSLR sales - there goes a big chunk of K-mount lens sales. K-mount needs to find a healthy, margin-rich tier above the mirrorless fray. FF fits that bill.


.
Agreed. FF mirrorless with the proper adapter will be a compelling reason for Pentaxicans to purchase. Heck, with the proper adapters, it will be a compelling reason for owners of vintage Nikon, Canon, Konica, Minolta, Olympus, Contax, etc... lenses to purchase. Imagine, using your vintage glass at the FL that it was originally designed for? Fast 50s as fast 50s.

There is a related phenomena happening in the Micro Four-Thirds world right now. Many bought into the format so that they could use their legacy 50s that have been sitting in drawers for the past 5 years. With the release of the excellent Olympus 45mm F1.8, many are buying it and putting their beloved 50s back in the drawer. The end result? Camera sales followed by lens sales and the successful launch of a new platform.

I'll stand in line for a Pentax mirrorless FF with my M50 F1.7, Super Tak 50 F1.4, etc..Come on Pentax!
12-30-2011, 08:54 AM   #237
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QuoteOriginally posted by johnmflores Quote
Agreed. FF mirrorless with the proper adapter will be a compelling reason for Pentaxicans to purchase. Heck, with the proper adapters, it will be a compelling reason for owners of vintage Nikon, Canon, Konica, Minolta, Olympus, Contax, etc... lenses to purchase. Imagine, using your vintage glass at the FL that it was originally designed for? Fast 50s as fast 50s.

There is a related phenomena happening in the Micro Four-Thirds world right now. Many bought into the format so that they could use their legacy 50s that have been sitting in drawers for the past 5 years. With the release of the excellent Olympus 45mm F1.8, many are buying it and putting their beloved 50s back in the drawer. The end result? Camera sales followed by lens sales and the successful launch of a new platform.

I'll stand in line for a Pentax mirrorless FF with my M50 F1.7, Super Tak 50 F1.4, etc..Come on Pentax!
The scenario you described where Olympus sells lenses to follow bodies is the motive for camera manufacturers.

There is very little profit margin on camera bodies, especially digital, where models and fabrication structures change frequently. The real money is on glass sales which are all aftermarket.

Pentax, while proud of the M50/1.7 quality, nevertheless wants you to buy a new lens with your new camera body, or Pentax will not make enough money to stay in business.

It's been that way for the entire duration of handheld photography as an industry.
12-30-2011, 08:54 AM   #238
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johnmflores , it doesn't looks like you agree. The idea was that:
QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
it would make no difference if the MILC is made by Pentax or e.g. Sony/Olympus/Panasonic/Samsung. Current K-mount users will not automatically migrate to a Pentax MILC.
And that's even more true for vintage lenses, they would work quite well adapted on some "foreign" system since there isn't much automation to be lost (and no electronics).

So you could try to push Sony into making that FF MILC; it wouldn't matter for your vintage 50. Though I'm not sure how many people would pay 2500$+ for a camera without a proper viewfinder.
12-30-2011, 09:14 AM   #239
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
johnmflores , it doesn't looks like you agree. The idea was that:

And that's even more true for vintage lenses, they would work quite well adapted on some "foreign" system since there isn't much automation to be lost (and no electronics).

So you could try to push Sony into making that FF MILC; it wouldn't matter for your vintage 50. Though I'm not sure how many people would pay 2500$+ for a camera without a proper viewfinder.
Sony is rumoured to have a nex 9 ff being prepped for release in 2012 so FF Milc is coming in all likelihood. lot's of wild speculation on it though. likely not until fall photokina
12-30-2011, 09:30 AM   #240
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
The scenario you described where Olympus sells lenses to follow bodies is the motive for camera manufacturers.

There is very little profit margin on camera bodies, especially digital, where models and fabrication structures change frequently. The real money is on glass sales which are all aftermarket.

Pentax, while proud of the M50/1.7 quality, nevertheless wants you to buy a new lens with your new camera body, or Pentax will not make enough money to stay in business.

It's been that way for the entire duration of handheld photography as an industry.
Maybe I wasn't clear in my last post:
  1. Pentax releases a FF mirrorless camera with adapters for Pentax K, Canon FD, Nikon, Minolta, Olympus, and other lenses. They release a couple of native lenses with the camera.
  2. People with legacy lenses like the idea of using them at their native focal length. They buy the Pentax FF mirrorless.
  3. People enjoy using their Pentax FF mirrorless with their old lenses and tell others about it. People who otherwise would not consider the Pentax brand are now buying the Pentax FF mirrorless.
  4. Pentax develops a native 50mm lens for their FF mirrorless camera.
  5. People who had purchased the Pentax FF mirrorless to use with their old lenses are tempted by the new 50mm lens. They buy it.
  6. Pentax develops more lenses for their FF mirrorless camera.

That formula worked for Olympus and Panasonic. There is a huge chunk of M43 owners that would not have considered buying an Olympus (let alone unknown Panasonic) if they could not have used their old lenses.
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