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01-17-2012, 06:28 AM   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by Zygonyx Quote
Hello guys, bearing in mind that the flange distance of the K-mount is no less than 43mm, i get difficulty following you up
But i agree K-mount MILC still is feasible, nevertheless there would not be that of a size reduction with K-x for example, and that was my point.
imho this would make better sense and look "LX like" sized with an FF sensor... though getting close from Leica M9's overall volume, for a much more attractive price.
It is NOT feasible.

K-Mount requires the flange distance be 43mm or legacy lenses will not focus to infinity.

K-mount is designed for a mirror box--a physical separation from the rear element to the focal plane of a set distance. You cannot simply shorten the distance by getting rid of the mirror and retain backwards compatibility. It's simple physics.

About the best one can do is an adapter.

01-17-2012, 07:46 AM   #47
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If the 4 models mentioned in this interview are all APS-C, I don't think Pentax will be very successful at taking market share from Canikon. Most newbies looking to get into photography only know of two brands, Canon and Nikon, because that's what they see their peers using and because that's what they see the professionals they've encountered using (mainly portrait and wedding). I'd argue most portrait/wedding photographers use a Canikon FF. From the newbies standpoint, the pictures these cameras take are the pinacle of what's achievable (I doubt they've heard of Hasselblad/645). When they go to invest in their first DSLR (APS-C), I guarentee part of them is buying into Canikon just because of the FF cameras they've experienced (both from the professionals using them and the pretty FF pictures lining their walls). In the back if their minds there's consciously or subconsciously a hope that they could some day upgrade to the FF cameras and get the same results.

Of course their thinking is not without flaws, APS-C can give professional results no problem, and likely only a few percent of them will ever upgrade to FF, but I think even the option of FF greatly increases their APS-C sales.

If Pentax wants to compete with DSLRs, I think they need a FF model, and a massive marketing budget. I haven't ever seen a Pentax commercial in the states. My local camera shops bad mouth Pentax as being subpar (mostly from not hearing from them, they need to be marketed to as well as the consumer). There is not a K-7 or K-5 in all of the photography shops in New Mexico. The consumer hasn't heard of Pentax from the media, their peers, professionals, nor can they hold them in the store...why would they be interested? My friend, a recent college grad, saw another friends Panasonic compact and immediately asked, "Ooh is that a Nikon 1?". She had doubtless seen the abundant stream of Ashton Kutcher commercials, and guess what, they worked!
01-17-2012, 07:55 AM   #48
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QuoteQuote:
And they can't do it right away. This need to grow in consumers mind.
To be competitive with C&N, they need to grow in the advanced amateur and pro markets. Pentax is less than insignificant in the advanced amateur and pro markets. Hoya wrapped up the consumer market with painted cameras that appeal to the social networking crowd. They had to make money somewhere, and they knew, like we should, that there were just too many gaps in the Pentax System for it to be taken seriously in any other market segment.
01-17-2012, 08:05 AM   #49
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I think a 4 model lineup needs to be 3 apsc and 1 ff myself
Value entry - ie Kr replacement offering a little better than the comp in the same price category - focus on kits
Mid - think K5 continuing on as a model - now kitted mainly
Enthusiast - think K5 with better AF, Better Flash and 24MP and improved video - kits available but focus on upgrade market
FF - Still a high end enthusiast model not D4 competitor everything the apsc top has plus FF and better Video - same as below but with a kit 24-105 f4 available

Camera 5 is the Pro Camera - 645D and successive variants

I'm not a Video guy but the market demands it

01-17-2012, 10:56 AM   #50
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Pentax need to retain their newly earned following (Kx & Kr) by providing the lenses and cameras to keep them with the brand. It is interesting that he chose to say compete with Canon/Nikon's line-ups because neither of them have released an SLT camera yet, whether that is what he was hinting at and we'll see them later this year or not I can't hazard a guess. But in my mind he was referring to current camera ranges.

A line up of replacements for the Kr & K5 with a K1 (FF) with additional long glass would keep an awful lot of enthusiast Pentax users in the fold instead of seeing them drift away to CaNikon FF cameras and spending all that money, that enthusiasts do, on high end lenses that could have been spent on Pentax glass. An SLT range can come later, I don't see a rush of Pentax users demanding them now, wait a year or two until the technology is there to offer a grand entrance.

Those people (with due respect) buying 55-300s / 50-200 / FA50/1.4 and so on are not going to fill the coffers, those people who buy DA*300 / 60-250 / FA Ltds etc. are the photographer profile that Pentax need to retain.
01-17-2012, 11:29 AM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
Those people (with due respect) buying 55-300s / 50-200 / FA50/1.4 and so on are not going to fill the coffers, those people who buy DA*300 / 60-250 / FA Ltds etc. are the photographer profile that Pentax need to retain.
and have been losing at a steady clip if the number of people here jumping ship for FF are any indication
01-17-2012, 12:37 PM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
and have been losing at a steady clip if the number of people here jumping ship for FF are any indication
That can be tested empirically by proxy.

Is this forum growing in members?

If yes, then, since Pentax has only offered APS-C, the losses are outnumbered by the
new entrants.

If the number is declining, then the brand is losing market to FF.
01-17-2012, 12:38 PM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
Not everything has to be a tiny pancake. Vignetting and soft corners are a function of lens design, so new designs can address this. The new Fuji X-mount has the wide angle lenses recessed into the body with larger rear elements. The lens looks like a pancake, but it sits down in the body so it is longer than it looks went mounted. Only 11mm from the rear element to the sensor.
Let's first see if that Fuji wide angle performs well!

01-17-2012, 12:47 PM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
That can be tested empirically by proxy.

Is this forum growing in members?

If yes, then, since Pentax has only offered APS-C, the losses are outnumbered by the
new entrants.

If the number is declining, then the brand is losing market to FF.

the goal would be to keep the old while getting the new.Certainly the last couple of years Pentax has had gains in new users, But they have also lost (or at least had loyalties divided) by people getting Canon/Sony/Nikon FF

If your user base even if they keep your camera buy into another system then there will be less dollars for investment in your system
If the system they buy into has very expensive lenses like canikon for instance then they may have little to no money left for investment in your system, they may even end up selling off your brand all together and picking up an apsc backup for the new system. No matter which way it works you lose.

As it sits the Pentax system is a limited system (I love it but there is little choice in new gear)
If Ricoh is serious about growth the long term strategy will have to include moves to keep this part of the user base. they may not buy as many 85 1.4 lenses as kit users do 50-200 but the 85 will likely be a much more high profit product.
Ricoh certainly has more capital available for investment in a system than Hoya did and a stated goal of growing the business So they may be able to afford a more long term view than hoya's 2 year one.

They may also choose to ignore the segment altogether and develop a mirrorless line that has a different mount and just support dslr with more static choices until the mirrorless market is big enough to abandon the old. I doubt it though as the old system is what they paid for.
01-17-2012, 01:05 PM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
That can be tested empirically by proxy.

Is this forum growing in members?

If yes, then, since Pentax has only offered APS-C, the losses are outnumbered by the
new entrants.

If the number is declining, then the brand is losing market to FF.
That theory totally neglects to consider the very important consideration of average spend per user. The average new Kx / Kr user will not be buying up multiple top of the range lenses and their ave. spend over say a two year period may be in the range of US$1,000 - 1,500 whilst the enthusiast may well in the same time have bought a couple of K5 bodies, a couple of Limited's and a couple of DA* lenses too, totaling more than US$5,000 - 6,000. Which has the greater profit margin for Pentax and positive impact on their corporate health ? The number of new members on the forum could double but if they are off-set by a steady loss of enthusiasts then the general health of Pentax, as dictated by their customer base, is declining.
01-18-2012, 07:32 AM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
the goal would be to keep the old while getting the new.Certainly the last couple of years Pentax has had gains in new users, But they have also lost (or at least had loyalties divided) by people getting Canon/Sony/Nikon FF
Nothing new for Pentax over the last 40 years. Many enthusiasts who owned a Nikon F3 also owned a smaller Pentax ME Super or an Olympus OM-2n. It's very common in many sectors to have multi-brand and price point consumers in a single category such as SLR cameras. In fact, Olympus dropped their SLR lines entirely and became the compact P&S camera maker of choice for enthusiasts with models such as the XA. Eventually Contax, Fuji, Konica, and Yashica, saw the merit in that approach because there are greater gross revenues and consumer flexibility at those price points. Creating enormous SLR systems is a huge risk. Same for new mirrorless systems. Same for both trying for FF and APS-C.

By definition one cannot capture new entrant market share by offering $2,500/body FF cameras. Price will determine market reach. Very little else will. Since the FF market is so tiny as a result of the very high cost to enter, all you are doing is competing directly with Canikon for the same people. Pentax FF will still lose enthusiasts to Canikon because the Canikon offerings are vast and established. It would take Pentax a decade to come close.

I think people are way over-estimating the loss to Canikon FF. The real loss appears to be to lower-end m43 cameras.

QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
That theory totally neglects to consider the very important consideration of average spend per user. The average new Kx / Kr user will not be buying up multiple top of the range lenses and their ave. spend over say a two year period may be in the range of US$1,000 - 1,500 whilst the enthusiast may well in the same time have bought a couple of K5 bodies, a couple of Limited's and a couple of DA* lenses too, totaling more than US$5,000 - 6,000. Which has the greater profit margin for Pentax and positive impact on their corporate health ? The number of new members on the forum could double but if they are off-set by a steady loss of enthusiasts then the general health of Pentax, as dictated by their customer base, is declining.
It is far safer with less risky ROI to toll up for a swathe of mid- to lower end product than tool up for a range of very expensive FF glass that may sell so few units per year your break even is 20 years down the road. It is a much greater risk to challenge Canikon at the higher end than target the more elastic D7000/T3i crowd. Sony tried to compete and got nowhere, despite a discount on their own sensors and a far superior distribution and marketing channel than Pentax/Ricoh could ever dream of.

There are many customers a company cannot afford to keep. Biz 101.
01-18-2012, 07:42 AM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
... Also we will be looking to grow strongly in the Digital SLR market.
Now that's what I'm talkin' about

Last edited by JohnBee; 01-18-2012 at 08:42 AM.
01-18-2012, 08:07 AM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
That theory totally neglects to consider the very important consideration of average spend per user. The average new Kx / Kr user will not be buying up multiple top of the range lenses and their ave. spend over say a two year period may be in the range of US$1,000 - 1,500 whilst the enthusiast may well in the same time have bought a couple of K5 bodies, a couple of Limited's and a couple of DA* lenses too, totaling more than US$5,000 - 6,000. Which has the greater profit margin for Pentax and positive impact on their corporate health ? The number of new members on the forum could double but if they are off-set by a steady loss of enthusiasts then the general health of Pentax, as dictated by their customer base, is declining.
There are those who will enter the brand with the K-x/r or its equivalent and never upgrade. Probably the largest segment.
There are those who will enter via the K-x/r or newer entry level dSLR and upgrade to the K-5/7 or its equivalent.
There are some who will enter at the K-5/7 level.

Of these the largest group is the first one. They are also the least likely to buy lots of new lenses. However, this is the largest group for all the dSLR brands. Canon and Nikon have loads of fans at this level. You have to have this level of camera, unless you are Leica or HB, to entice new brand followers. But to keep the ones that want to keep learning more, or have to have the newest and best, you have to have an upward path for them. That path also has to have a full line of supports and extras. This is where Pentax has been relying on its old equipment. I have to say that I bought my K-x for two main reasons - its price to performance ratio was better than anything on the market AND its ability to use legacy equipment in the form of lenses and other items. However, those old lenses can only take you so far. There is a huge, IMHO, gap in Pentax's lineup between the 3 kit lenses (18-55, 50-200, 50-300) and the Limiteds with only one lens IMHO in that gap really - the 35/2.4. Canon and Nikon have several lower cost Primes that are modern in that gap. I just bought a 50/1.8 (if I recall correctly) for my sister as a Christmas present for her Nikon D60 and it was around $200 BNIB which is around what the 35/2.4 costs for us.

My hope is that Ricoh will see that they have a skeleton framework with a couple great cameras but that its a framework that needs fleshing out. Start making new Teleconverters, better peripherals, and fill in the gaps in the lenses offered. Add newer cameras at least at the entry and Pro-sumer level and it'll be a great start. Then a FF and other professional equipment will make sense. Just my thoughts, such as they are, on a nasty Wednesday morning.
01-18-2012, 08:23 AM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
There is a huge, IMHO, gap in Pentax's lineup between the 3 kit lenses (18-55, 50-200, 50-300) and the Limiteds with only one lens IMHO in that gap really - the 35/2.4.
Yes, if you think of an upgrade path to primes, you're basically right (ever since the 50/1.4 price skyrocketed). I guess the following are missing in order to match the competition: A remake of the 50/1.7, an 28mm/2.8 and an inexpensive short tele.

But... Some will still prefer zooms, and there are a few options: the 55-300 is not only a kit lens (in fact it's only a kit lens in the plastic version for the K-x/K-r), having just gotten the (real metal mount version of) 55-300 I just have to say that it's a lens that has build and quality that's a fair level above what you normally consider "kit lens" level. It's a decent upgrade from the 50-200. And then there's the somewhat under appreciated DA17-70, which may be an excellent choice for many beginners that just want a zoom lens with better IQ and a little more reach.
01-18-2012, 08:59 AM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by gazonk Quote
Yes, if you think of an upgrade path to primes, you're basically right (ever since the 50/1.4 price skyrocketed). I guess the following are missing in order to match the competition: A remake of the 50/1.7, an 28mm/2.8 and an inexpensive short tele.

But... Some will still prefer zooms, and there are a few options: the 55-300 is not only a kit lens (in fact it's only a kit lens in the plastic version for the K-x/K-r), having just gotten the (real metal mount version of) 55-300 I just have to say that it's a lens that has build and quality that's a fair level above what you normally consider "kit lens" level. It's a decent upgrade from the 50-200. And then there's the somewhat under appreciated DA17-70, which may be an excellent choice for many beginners that just want a zoom lens with better IQ and a little more reach.
Optically the DA & DAL 50-300 are identical and most beginners will not appreciate any difference between them IMHO. Sales people and fans may point out to the new person the difference and make, again IMHO, more of the differences than are meaningful for a new user but those are the Kit lenses. When I said gap I meant lenses that are not an "investment" for a non enthusiast. The 50/1.8's that both Canon and Nikon sell are priced in the ~$200 range as are several other entry-level primes.

Yes, there are other zooms, and third-party ones as well, but again outside the Kit lenses (good as they are) there are none that are not daunting in their price for a newcomer.
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