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09-26-2012, 11:07 PM   #76
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give pentax a break

i think you guys need to cut Pentax some slack.
They are a business and they have to make money in order to spend money.

When i read somewhere that Ricoh had paid ~$100 Million for Pentax I was amazed. That is really nothing, CaNikon probably spends more money on toilet paper in a year than that.

Given that companies often sell for around 2x earnings that puts them at about $50 Million per year and since R&D is generally less than 10% of that we are looking at around $5 Million a year for the entire R&D budget.

I personally am impressed by what Pentax has been able to accomplish, they are definitely much better than I am at making silk purses out of very tiny budgets!

1 - they have managed to survive at all (think Kodak, Polaroid, Minolta, Contax, Konica...)
2 - they have addressed the shrinking low end market with a product that was probably not too expensive to develop and has no direct competition in its niche (the Q) and a small range of fun and inexpensive lenses.
3 - they put out a mirrorless camera that if nothing else did generate a lot of free publicity for the company (remember all publicity is good publicity) and I hope covered its development costs.
4 - they probably couldn't afford to create a new lens mount for mirrorless but research shows that many mirrorless buyers stick with the lens they get and they did provide a very compact XS lens for the camera, a camera that I am enjoying and that has amazing image quality and ease of use.

In addition, all their cameras are just really excellent photographic tools, obviously designed and used by the people who make them.

I really don't think that any of the other photo companies would have been able to pull this off.

I take my hat off to them, they have done amazing products on a shoe string budget.

The K5II(s) is a refinement on a product that has probably paid off its development costs, they even managed to improve the AF and maybe provide some additional appeal with the "s" version. If nothing else this allows them to set a lower price for the newer "improved" models and maybe grow their customer base.
Now they just need to make some money selling these so that they can fund what ever comes next ...

09-26-2012, 11:34 PM   #77
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
Sony A900 SR in action. It looks like a good bit more movement than what you are suggesting. That is more than 1mm of movement.

Sony Alpha A900: Super SteadyShot on FF - YouTube
A900 has just 1-1.5 stops of SR's advantage in real tests.
09-27-2012, 04:10 AM   #78
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QuoteOriginally posted by JeffP3456 Quote
i think you guys need to cut Pentax some slack.
They are a business and they have to make money in order to spend money.

When i read somewhere that Ricoh had paid ~$100 Million for Pentax I was amazed. That is really nothing, CaNikon probably spends more money on toilet paper in a year than that.

Given that companies often sell for around 2x earnings that puts them at about $50 Million per year and since R&D is generally less than 10% of that we are looking at around $5 Million a year for the entire R&D budget.

I personally am impressed by what Pentax has been able to accomplish, they are definitely much better than I am at making silk purses out of very tiny budgets!

1 - they have managed to survive at all (think Kodak, Polaroid, Minolta, Contax, Konica...)
2 - they have addressed the shrinking low end market with a product that was probably not too expensive to develop and has no direct competition in its niche (the Q) and a small range of fun and inexpensive lenses.
3 - they put out a mirrorless camera that if nothing else did generate a lot of free publicity for the company (remember all publicity is good publicity) and I hope covered its development costs.
4 - they probably couldn't afford to create a new lens mount for mirrorless but research shows that many mirrorless buyers stick with the lens they get and they did provide a very compact XS lens for the camera, a camera that I am enjoying and that has amazing image quality and ease of use.

In addition, all their cameras are just really excellent photographic tools, obviously designed and used by the people who make them.

I really don't think that any of the other photo companies would have been able to pull this off.

I take my hat off to them, they have done amazing products on a shoe string budget.

The K5II(s) is a refinement on a product that has probably paid off its development costs, they even managed to improve the AF and maybe provide some additional appeal with the "s" version. If nothing else this allows them to set a lower price for the newer "improved" models and maybe grow their customer base.
Now they just need to make some money selling these so that they can fund what ever comes next ...
All what you is undoubtably very true. Pentax has done extremely well under the circumstances...

But all that doesn't matter if they don't keep that up and disappear togethe with APSC DSLRs. They have a niche market now, in which they are very good. That niche disappearing and they chose not to jump into a next niche. Maybe they're content with become just a medium-format brand, and call it quits on both APSC and FF DSLRs?
09-27-2012, 04:25 AM   #79
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QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
A
But all that doesn't matter if they don't keep that up and disappear togethe with APSC DSLRs. They have a niche market now, in which they are very good. That niche disappearing and they chose not to jump into a next niche. Maybe they're content with become just a medium-format brand, and call it quits on both APSC and FF DSLRs?
But the question is what the next niche will be? FF DSLRs can turn out to be rather short-lived if EVFs keep getting better and FF mirrorless cameras take over. If we exclude Leica for the moment, the only current FF mirrorless is a video camera from Sony. So that market is still open for grabs when the technology is good enough, but Sony is one step ahead of the rest of the market. If I were Pentax, I would seriously consider dropping FF DSLR altogether and concentrate on a completely new system with shorter flange distance. But it might still make sense to make one stop-gap K-5ish FF model, with a few revamped FA lenses and perhaps one new standard zoom - if the development costs aren't too high.

09-27-2012, 04:25 AM   #80
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Interesting. I would like to see more XS (mirrorless-only) lenses. Its too bad the K-01 was not received well just because of its appearance. Its a great camera.
09-27-2012, 04:46 AM   #81
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Are the APS-C DSLRs really dying? Does anyone has some data to prove that? (I would be mostly interested in sales volume, thank you). So far I can't see the cheap "FFs", declining APS-Cs and I'm not so sure the spike in D800 sales is a sign of world domination Unfortunately I'm no visionary so I can only draw conclusions from signs I can see.

The issue with Pentax rushing out a FF MILC or whatever product is not yet on the market (but is expected, in the not so far future) is that being first doesn't mean they will be able to keep a lead over their competitors. Also, switching from one market (DSLRs) to another (MILCs) doesn't mean they will be much more successful.

By the way, EVFs getting better is not an "if" - Epson was demonstrating the next iteration at Photokina. Quite a step forward, but...
09-27-2012, 04:55 AM   #82
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It's only the beginning, in 5 years time, FFs will be cheaper and way better and probably lighter than they are now.
Remember when Canon launch is first "cheap" d-slr, it opened a new world for peaple that want to upgrade from they more compact systeme but could not afford a professional camera
09-27-2012, 05:06 AM   #83
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Thats what I've heard 5 years ago

09-27-2012, 05:40 AM - 1 Like   #84
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Thats what I've heard 5 years ago
And you claim that FF hasn't become more affordable in those 5 years?!

Not only have they become cheaper, they've also become more used. They're stuffing those FF sensors in mid-level DSLRs now, in compact point and shoots, bridgecams, and even camcorders.

Not to mention the used market. Lookup Canon 5D on ebay, you can even find them priced the same as K5. I bought my 5D for $650,- with a shutter count of only 12k actuations. That's a steal and unheard of 5 years ago.

Choice for any photografy enthusiast is currently easy: New K5IIs or a real FF, and a bunch of glass for the same amount of money?

But it's not only the money-saving that is hurting Pentax here. My customers want me to shoot FF, doesn't matter if that camera is old, used, has only 12mp, or has the ergonomics designed for a cow: They see the FF format and suddenly they see me as a pro, regardless of what I really am or the quality of my work: I have more clients now.

A lot has happened in FF-land in 5 years time!
09-27-2012, 06:45 AM   #85
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Have they? All I saw was the introduction of lower-end bodies, i.e. the $2100 6D&D600 which, by the way, are more expensive than the 2009 A850 ($2000).
The 5D MkII was launched in 2008 for $2699; the D700, in same year for $2999. Their replacements? D800 for $2999.95, 5D MkIII for $3499. FTR, the brand new 5DMkIII is more expensive than the original 5D was.

I'm afraid I don't see any dramatic, sustainable reduction in price, something that would make the so-called "FF" mainstream in 5 years and kill the current mainstream, APS-C.

New vs. 7-year old is a decision anyone could make, however I don't see it as determining the death of APS-C.
09-27-2012, 06:59 AM   #86
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QuoteOriginally posted by crewl1 Quote
4.) No more SDM for new lenses, will use DC
With the difference being in the name... they are both electric motors in the lens....
amazing how tarnished the name sdm has been they feel the need to change it.
09-27-2012, 07:11 AM   #87
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Why don't you extend the range of quotes by Steve Jobs into those in which he openly denied Apple was working, or even thinking seriously, about certain new products and markets .. Only to introduce all new products for exactly those markets a year or two later! Steve was blatantly lying. Not for a good reason?
Indeed. And I think it's fair to say that Apple's rise from near-death to global dominance will have been exhaustively studied by management theorists around the world, and ambitious executives are no doubt asking themselves, "What would Steve do?"

Well, what he wouldn't do is give away his product strategy to his competitors, nor would he dilute demand for current offerings by promising some wonderful new products in the very near future. Of course, it's hard to lie through one's teeth while maintaining a veneer of plausibility, so there's quite an art to this. As a rule Steve didn't so much lie outright as act dismissively about certain possibilities, giving the impression of denial without directly saying so.

The upshot of all this, of course, is that we should be very careful about what we read into these interviews. The interviewee could be economical with the truth, or flat out lying, or genuinely in the dark about some activities.

Last edited by asw66; 09-27-2012 at 07:12 AM. Reason: emphasis
09-27-2012, 08:19 AM   #88
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
I'm afraid I don't see any dramatic, sustainable reduction in price, something that would make the so-called "FF" mainstream in 5 years and kill the current mainstream, APS-C.

New vs. 7-year old is a decision anyone could make, however I don't see it as determining the death of APS-C.
Totally agree. APS-C is not going away any time soon. It's still the best compromise for most shooters, for performance, size and cost.
09-27-2012, 08:40 AM   #89
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Have they? All I saw was the introduction of lower-end bodies, i.e. the $2100 6D&D600 which, by the way, are more expensive than the 2009 A850 ($2000).
The 5D MkII was launched in 2008 for $2699; the D700, in same year for $2999. Their replacements? D800 for $2999.95, 5D MkIII for $3499. FTR, the brand new 5DMkIII is more expensive than the original 5D was.

I'm afraid I don't see any dramatic, sustainable reduction in price, something that would make the so-called "FF" mainstream in 5 years and kill the current mainstream, APS-C.

New vs. 7-year old is a decision anyone could make, however I don't see it as determining the death of APS-C.
Lol, you are completely conning yourself. The Sony was a dog they could barely give away by the end. The Nikon cams are either less or level pegging and they are in some regards vastly more capable than the previous generation. Which leaves Canon. If their prices don't come down then they will lose business to Nikon. Simples. Further, no one except Nikon knows whether the current prices are "sustainable". If Nikon see the bodies as an enticement to play in their profitable lens catalogues, they may be more than happy with those prices. This is buying into a system territory and in that, the cost of bodies isn't the only factor or even the important one anyway (lenses come first I'd have thought).

The history of technology is that over time folks get an awful lot more stuff for less money. FF isn't going to defy that. And it doesn't ever have to be very big to affect everyone else further down the line. Things which were once seen as high-end and which could be sold for lots of dough now find themselves in the middling bracket and people won't pay so much for them, etc, etc.

I'd have thought the limiting factor is whether the cost of FF sensors can come down due to economies of scale. If the answer is yes, then FF will have more influence. Either way, more FF is here to stay. It isn't all some wicked plot.

I entirely agree, though, that APS-C still has a lot of gas left in the tank for all sorts of reasons.
09-27-2012, 09:02 AM   #90
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
Totally agree. APS-C is not going away any time soon. It's still the best compromise for most shooters, for performance, size and cost.
It's not going away, it will just live in advanced mirrorless cameras and entry to mid-level DSLRs. The high-end/pro-level now fully belongs to FF (and used FF).

APS-C DSLRs no longer have an image quality/size advantage over anything as much smaller mirrorless cameras have the same image quality and comparably sized FF cameras have over twice the sensor area.

The only advantage APS-C DSLRs have left is cost, and that's only if you must have a DSLR. Short of FF, Sony, Samsung, Panasonic, Olympus and Fuji are making good progress in telling the world we don't.

Last edited by illdefined; 09-27-2012 at 09:09 AM.
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