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04-23-2012, 07:44 AM   #376
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
My B&M is a Henry's. They have always stocked a full Pentax line. But the local rep told me that what kept Pentax selling at all was modest price differentials in Pentax's favour; Pentax was less expensive, representing more value.

Without that advantage, Pentax would have far less counter service and much lower sales.

We'll have to see this "settling", but right now, my local guy says he expects to sell much less Pentax because the prices are now "out of line".

Canon, Nikon, and Sony absolutely own the advertising, so if you want your brand notices, you need to offer value, not "my price is the same as the other guys" (but the flash system is ancient, there's no FF upgrade path, no tethering, less lens selection).

The concern here is that Pentax thinks they have a robust enough line tyo compete with Canikon or Sony, but they do not. The Pentax quirks (AA batteries) sometimes made a sale, but other deficits killed as many or more. But Pentax offered a better value, especially with lenses. If that's not the case, what makes Pentax different?
the Canadian pricing hasn't changed though and in fact has gotten better in the last 3 years so it should help not hinder (and its still a damn sight lower than the canon and nikon alternates for the most part.

Canon and Nikon own the advertising because hey pay for it. I imagine the Ad co-op will go up with Pentax as well as part of the strategy.

There are a lot of assumptions made based on how Hoya ran things, but personally I think the entire game changed with the sale (Hoya really was only out to maximize value for resale, not ensure the growth of the brand)

04-23-2012, 07:51 AM   #377
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QuoteOriginally posted by MrPetkus Quote
alternatives from Tamron and Sigma. I find it very disturbing that those two companies appear to be leaving Pentax behind. Sigma lenses that are forever "coming soon". The new Tamron 24-70/2.8 looks really nice and even comes in non-VC for Sony but nothing for K.

That <and> the unilateral pricing policy makes me feel like I've chosen a stagnant platform. Pentax needs to come out with some exciting news to offset this.
Tamron and Sigma have cut K mount production because the market dropped significantly under Hoya -and when you add in the Brand lenses being sold for the same or less as their lenses it made sense to devote the capacity to M4/3 which overall represents more sales. If the Pricing on the Pentax brand holds at higher levels and they announce a serious 4 camera platform (as is rumoured currently ) then I think the coming soon and the not available at all will begin to change to available in Ka mount
I wouldn't be surprised to see Tokina return as well at some point, and zeiss and voigtlander
But first Ricoh needs to get the plan in place and the model line up out there.
this is a multi year plan, and it took a few years to destroy the brand, it'll take a few to rebuild
04-23-2012, 08:08 AM   #378
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I have a few questions:

1) Does Pentax own the Pentax forum? It sure seems like it. If that's so, it's not a real forum.
2) What are the rules of this forum. I don't allow cursing in mine, but this is not my forum and I'm not a prude.
3) I hear the words aggressive. Show me what is aggressive, please.
4) Show me what is insulting or bickering on this forum. The blog is not the issue. The issue is the post made on this forum that kindled a frustration over the selection and value of Pentax glass.
5) Since when do you delete posts because they are all negative. Perhaps there is a reason they are negative. Again, what are the forum rules?

I've been in Marketing and Retail for 15 years, and Ned's comments on small stores in the same breath as making the actual street price higher makes no sense to me. Even the larger storefronts don't sell the high-end glass, and that seems to be the lenses most affected. Ned created this mess, not the loyal Pentax customers. Do you think we would take all this time out of our busy schedules vent our frustration for no reason? Meanwhile, long time Pentax customers are questioning their loyalty. For example, I need a high quality WP wide prime and wide zoom for my K5 (which I love). I also love my 55mm and 50-135mm WP lenses. But the absence of WP choices in the wide range makes my investment in Pentax difficult. Pentax has the 16-55 WP, but even the most loyal forum members view it as unfit for the "DA" moniker. To make the street price significantly higher to customers without addressing (fixing) the any of the many issues sited on this lens, by Pentax forum members, is at best an unwise marketing decision.
04-23-2012, 08:47 AM   #379
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Are you accusing Adam to be on the Pentax payroll? If you have accusations to do, please direct them and bring proof. However, with all the negativity spread everywhere, I fail to understand how one could possibly think Pentaxforums is owned by Pentax.
If you're simply asking, of course Pentaxforums is not affiliated with Pentax (Adam can confirm, if you believe it's necessary). And yes, it's very much a real forum.
By the way:
About PentaxForums.com
(Adam, maybe you should put a line specifying this is not an official Pentax (Ricoh Imaging Company) forum?)

3) - how about calling Ned a liar, or suggesting certain Pentax Imaging employees should be fired? The line was crossed, and not only once. Such messages weren't deleted...

5) Who is doing what?

OK, now on the subject - probably you already saw it on Ned's blog:
http://www.robgalbraith.com/bins/content_page.asp?cid=7-11676-12537
And a not-so-favorable opinion (this time, not from Ned's blog)
http://www.1001noisycameras.com/2012/04/sunday-rant-unilateral-pricing-polic...m-the-k-x.html

I consider the first to pretty much ignore all the negative aspects - maybe believing they'll sort out (in fact is only the price, am I right?), while the second... they don't make such a strong case:
1) instant rebates and price adjustments are possible, even with UPP
2) instant rebates
3) why speak against re-introducing Pentax products in B&M cameras?


Last edited by Kunzite; 04-23-2012 at 08:55 AM.
04-23-2012, 08:56 AM   #380
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sepia1 Quote
I have a few questions:

1) Does Pentax own the Pentax forum? It sure seems like it. If that's so, it's not a real forum.
2) What are the rules of this forum. I don't allow cursing in mine, but this is not my forum and I'm not a prude.
3) I hear the words aggressive. Show me what is aggressive, please.
4) Show me what is insulting or bickering on this forum. The blog is not the issue. The issue is the post made on this forum that kindled a frustration over the selection and value of Pentax glass.
5) Since when do you delete posts because they are all negative. Perhaps there is a reason they are negative. Again, what are the forum rules?

I've been in Marketing and Retail for 15 years, and Ned's comments on small stores in the same breath as making the actual street price higher makes no sense to me. Even the larger storefronts don't sell the high-end glass, and that seems to be the lenses most affected. Ned created this mess, not the loyal Pentax customers. Do you think we would take all this time out of our busy schedules vent our frustration for no reason? Meanwhile, long time Pentax customers are questioning their loyalty. For example, I need a high quality WP wide prime and wide zoom for my K5 (which I love). I also love my 55mm and 50-135mm WP lenses. But the absence of WP choices in the wide range makes my investment in Pentax difficult. Pentax has the 16-55 WP, but even the most loyal forum members view it as unfit for the "DA" moniker. To make the street price significantly higher to customers without addressing (fixing) the any of the many issues sited on this lens, by Pentax forum members, is at best an unwise marketing decision.
1 - no
2 - for rules ask the mods, they are pretty lenient but will adress over the top (and have in these very threads AFAIK)
3- the tone of your posts have been aggressive AFAIAC, but i'm not a mod. my point was you just are repeating the same thing 4 times in a row. I get it you're not happy., and having read what you posted to the blog I can see why he would choose a comment that is less heated to respond to the same issues raised
4- your new to the forum i can tell you many feel the tone and nature of the forum has become very negative lately It's supposed to be about photography
5 - I don't delete negative post (i'm not a mod) it is however it is Ned's right to only approve select comments (or none at all) it is a Blog not a forum. I think he approved a representation that covered the bases and answered as much as expediency would allow.

I spent 25 years in CE retail BTW (you don't mention what area of retail you are in) and I can tell you that the race to the bottom in the last few years on GM is why you see these things happening with many suppliers (Pentax is hardly unique previously Nikon, Sony and Canon have all addressed this). I think that Ricoh likely has a number of things in the pipeline that needed this addressed. Pentax US is addressing an issue that may well have been caused by constraints placed on them by the previous owner. I get that people aren't happy having to pay more. My point is that in general many of the prices are very competitive, those that aren't will adjust over the next few months. As for retailers not carrying the high end glass I can give a very valid reason. If the DA* lenses were going out the door online at 5points margin they aren't viable to stock. If you are bringing in an expensive lens and carrying the cost of stocking it you have the right to expect a return for that. In smaller stores with a small brand it may sit for a few months. now that is 1 but likely you need to stock at least 2 (a demo and one to go) so it may take 4 or even 5 months to see a return on investment. the reason higher end product has higher margins is exactly that. the lower end will work on lower margins and turn faster
It is definitely better to do this all at once rather than incrementally with new product launches, it's a breif period of pain for long term gain. Most definitely some will leave the brand over it. It's unfortunate but the brand needs a number of things done to make it viable in the modern market. It may seem like you are being punished but reality is you've had a pretty free ride for a long while at the expense of the strength of the brand which ultimately is not good for the end users or the retailers or the brand. this is a step (amongst many i would assume are coming) to address the endemic problems of Pentax in the market.

Anyway, I think it's time to move off these threads and get back to what i came here for originally which is discussion of photography techniques and styles, and what I think made the forum the place it is (or at least was)

So gripe away folks but be aware it's not likely to change Pentax' plans.Expect however that they will fine tune things as time passes. Chill and go take some pictures it's why we all by our cameras (brand is the least important aspect in your photography anyway, at this point they all make good gear)
04-23-2012, 09:13 AM   #381
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OK. Lots of retail experience on these forums...

Here's my take as a manufacturer. Canon's recent financial results were an eye-opener. Basically 50% gross margins.

This is a high-margin, high marketing and service expense business.

Pentax have neither. Not the marketing expense, nor the service expense (pathetically short 1 year warranties and stupid-long repair times).

By all means, improve B&M store presence, warranties, fast-turnarounds on repairs, new products, etc, and then edge pricing upwards.

In my English vernacular, Pentax are taking the mickey.
04-23-2012, 09:29 AM   #382
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QuoteOriginally posted by Unsinkable II Quote
By all means, improve B&M store presence, warranties, fast-turnarounds on repairs, new products, etc, and then edge pricing upwards.
My bet is they are working on those things now. Ricoh established UPP in teh USA to close the gray market. US gray market sellers were beginning to eat into European and Australian sales, as well as distrupting the US.

All the talk about B&M stores is a longer-term side benefit but not the immediate objective.
04-23-2012, 09:33 AM   #383
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Hmm... from Amazon.com's site:
Pentax SMC DA* 60-250mm f/4 ED IF SDM Telephoto Zoom Lens w/ Case for Pentax Digital SLR Cameras
Buy new: $1,999.95 $1,699.99
7 new from $1,500.002
2 used from $1,619.99
Should I buy used?

Monochrome: I no longer see "Imported" Pentax lenses on BH's site, so... it seems to be working

04-23-2012, 09:34 AM   #384
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote

All the talk about B&M stores is a longer-term side benefit but not the immediate objective.
Unfortunately B&M is but one criteria of many.

Pentax seem to be trying to lead the donkey with the stick instead of the carrot. Many folks don't like sticks on principle, whether they are hit by it or not.
04-23-2012, 09:39 AM   #385
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If they tried the other way, they would quickly run out of carrots - while not going very far
04-23-2012, 09:49 AM   #386
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
If they tried the other way, they would quickly run out of carrots - while not going very far
the last few years they had the carrots method, people just wanteed to pay less and less carrots. the horse is now ready for the nacker yard time for a new horse
04-23-2012, 10:24 AM - 1 Like   #387
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
the last few years they had the carrots method, people just wanteed to pay less and less carrots. the horse is now ready for the nacker yard time for a new horse

Very good point and it is so true and funny at the same time.

Pentax really need to get products out that people wants to buy and have them for a reasonable price. I really haven't brought a new lens for a few years because I have all the FA Limiteds, all the DA limiteds except for the 40 and I never wanted it), and all the DA* lenses. I really wanted a few more high quality lenses but Pentax, especially under Hoya ownership) just never released them. Where is the fast WR normal lens for just one example. Hopefully under Ricoh ownership Pentax will start releasing more high-end lenses. Then let the lenses compete in price with the high-end Nikon and Canon lenses.

Dave
04-23-2012, 10:27 AM - 1 Like   #388
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QuoteOriginally posted by DaveBlack Quote
Hopefully under Ricoh ownership Pentax will start releasing more high-end lenses. Then let the lenses compete in price with the high-end Nikon and Canon lenses.
AFAIK Ricoh has aggressively hired optics engineers (and electronic engineers), bringing back many of the released former employees. It just feels to me as if they are thinking bigger than many of the skeptics here give them credit for.
04-23-2012, 10:39 AM   #389
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
AFAIK Ricoh has aggressively hired optics engineers (and electronic engineers), bringing back many of the released former employees. It just feels to me as if they are thinking bigger than many of the skeptics here give them credit for.
Agreed, I think years of being the poor cousin to the medical division combined with a few years of extreme cost cutting by Hoya have led people to believe it's the only way Pentax can operate. Thing is if Ricoh has a vision and the money to implement the vision there is no reason for Pentax to stay the poor cousin. it will take time certainly but I read somewhere (on the Russian thread about cameras) that the goal was tripling sales in the next year on cameras. That seems like an aggressive target that signifies there is some infrastructure investment happening as well that we aren't aware of - I doubt the existing lines would support triple the volume but maybe they could with additional shifts)
I find it kind of exciting actually it should make the next 5 years a hell of a lot more interesting than the last 5 (and I wouldn't want to be Sony in this scenario - or for that matter Canon who don't seem to be able to bring out a top flight sensor anymore)
04-23-2012, 10:47 AM   #390
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
I find it kind of exciting actually it should make the next 5 years a hell of a lot more interesting than the last 5 (and I wouldn't want to be Sony in this scenario - or for that matter Canon who don't seem to be able to bring out a top flight sensor anymore)
One of my early-Ricoh suppositions was, "They want to compete with and take market share from Canon, as they did in copiers. Nikon, however, is another matter entirely." Lately I've slightly modified my thinking - Ricoh wants Pentax to be the solid #3 digital imaging company, competing effectively with Canon and Nikon.
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