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02-28-2013, 04:46 PM   #241
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+1 to the kit prime lens

02-28-2013, 05:55 PM - 1 Like   #242
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monochrome said

QuoteQuote:
I suggest you read my post again.
Why? No offense intended, but honestly, you're telling us WHY they CAN'T do this or that, but offering no alternative solutions.

What are your suggestions for solving the problem which was brought up in the interview, which was

How can Pentax overcome the "perception" that there is a problem with SDM.

You then asked

QuoteQuote:
You surely aren't suggesting Pentax is managed by incompetents.
I'm not the one who tried to make a Pentax Camera look like a Lego project, or posted a blog on my Pentax Web site about how much I liked my Leica.....
02-28-2013, 06:37 PM - 1 Like   #243
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@Heie

I just finished listening through the whole conversation.

Listening to Jim lifted my morale considerably. I believe if Pentax always had people like him in important positions they would never have ended up struggling like they do now.

I would like to highly commend you for bringing up the issue of "SDM perception" and linking it to the current warranty policy. It is just not a good idea to have a competitor like Sigma offer lens models that
  • are less expensive,
  • have a more robust focus drive (ring motor instead of micro motor), and
  • come with two-five additional years of warranty.

I also liked your idea of Pentax creating a measurable competitive advantages by committing to some international standard of weather sealing. This is not a straightforward path at all, but if they could pull it off, as a brand ambassador you'd have something more than just claiming "Pentax's 'weather-resistant' is better than Canon's 'drip proof'".

The idea I liked the most was the direct outreach to customers and dealers strategy.

I believe Pentax needs a way to make it attractive for dealers to sell Pentax equipment other than promising them high margins. The idea (it may have been Jim's) to give dealers exposure in return for promoting Pentax is a great one.

I think Pentax should do the following as quickly as possible:

Create a webpage representing a "Trial a Pentax" programme.
It should target clubs (i.e.,, groups of people, not individuals) of the type you mentioned (kayak, hiking, mountaineering, ...).

Clubs can apply for a selection of Pentax equipment (DSLRs+lenses, the waterproof compacts, etc).
All the club needs to do is to describe what they would use the equipment for and commit to writing an experience report. They would also have to agree that Pentax may use parts of their report for marketing purposes and to improve their products.

There should be a list of participating dealers and it would probably be easiest if the club selected one of the dealers to collaborate with. Then Pentax and/or the dealer can approve the request, and the dealer takes it from there.

Dealers should be prepared to make the most of the opportunity by demonstrating / selling useful accessories such as sling straps or B-grips (e.g., for mountaineering), camera bags, and have a selection of Pentax products on offer.

This way potential customers could "hold a Pentax" without Pentax playing a "me too"-high-margin-dealer game.

I could be wrong, but I think the current business model where a dealer gets 40% of the price for a DA* 50-135/2.8 is going to die sooner or later. I believe Pentax was more future-oriented when they had the direct marketing scheme. In this internet world, it should be normal to be able to order direct from the manufacturer (or their country representative).

One can try to keep the old "brick and mortar" model alive by artificial (and half-illegal) MSRP schemes, but I don't think this is going to work for that much longer.

Last edited by Class A; 02-28-2013 at 08:51 PM.
02-28-2013, 07:59 PM - 1 Like   #244
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
You surely aren't suggesting Pentax is managed by incompetents
Outside of business only numbers; it would not be difficult for Pentax to do any better. Did they get all of their execs from Kodak and Enron

02-28-2013, 10:14 PM   #245
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildimages Quote
monochrome said
Quote: I suggest you read my post again.
Why? No offense intended, but honestly, you're telling us WHY they CAN'T do this or that, but offering no alternative solutions.
I never said they can't. I specifically never said they shouldn't. I said a Warranty isn't free.
QuoteOriginally posted by wildimages Quote

What are your suggestions for solving the problem which was brought up in the interview, which was

How can Pentax overcome the "perception" that there is a problem with SDM.
Take the optimal steps necessary to change the perception, including possibly changing the Warranty policy, understanding that everything has a cost. If they decide to allocate scarce marginal capital this way, what other marginal "thing" that we want will they not do? The last expenditure is the hardest one to decide on. The first is the easiest.

QuoteOriginally posted by wildimages Quote
I'm not the one who tried to make a Pentax Camera look like a Lego project, or posted a blog on my Pentax Web site about how much I liked my Leica.....
Neither did Ricoh.

Ricoh just Fire-Saled the remaining Hoya K-01 stock. Small money now beats no money later every day of the week.

Ricoh no longer employs the Leica Man. Ricoh employs Mr. Malcolm, who takes phone calls from Pentax users.

SDM is a pre-Hoya and Hoya technology. We do not and cannot know what Ricoh has planned. I personally wish they would can SDM altogether (as they have done the K-01 and the President of Pentax USA) and use a newer technology, brand it, employ strict QC testing and Warrant all lenses that have the technology.

None of which is free. So what will the new lenses cost, and how many will pay for it?

Last edited by monochrome; 03-01-2013 at 05:10 AM.
02-28-2013, 11:19 PM   #246
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Pointless.

Last edited by wildimages; 03-01-2013 at 04:32 AM.
03-01-2013, 05:27 AM   #247
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildimages Quote
Pointless.
Pentax is Perfect just the way it is...........
03-01-2013, 05:57 AM   #248
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People often have a hard time with the difference between Price and Cost.

Price, is what I have to pay for something right this minute. It is a one time thing.

Cost, is what I will end up paying for that item (or service) over the lifetime of ownership of the product or service.

As a small business owner, I will jump at the opportunity to make my customers happy, keep them loyal, and ensure their repeat business.

The price I pay for doing this up front, outweighs the cost of not doing it in the long term.

Monochrome's statement

QuoteQuote:
If they decide to allocate scarce marginal capital this way, what other marginal "thing" that we want will they not do? The last expenditure is the hardest one to decide on. The first is the easiest.
If true, when applied to Pentax Management, shows they too, have a hard time determining the difference between Cost and Price. I submit that if they expended the "marginal capital" to extend the warranties of SDM lenses., they would not have to worry about expending other "marginal capital" in the future because they would have more resources to work with.

If Pentax is convinced the SDM issue is simply a "perception" with no basis in fact, another option for them, most likely much cheaper than the already nothing it would ultimately cost them to extend the warranties of SDM lenses, would be to simply extend the warranties of the SDM Motors. Leave the basic warranty in place, at 1 year, but extend a 5 year warranty that would only apply to SDM failures.

Sometimes it is hard to see the forest for the trees, but as photographers, we are trained to look. Pentax is a Photography Company isn't it? Isn't it time for them to SEE what is happening and to LOOK for ways to capitalize on the situation? Someone once said "Problems, are opportunities in work cloths" The trick, is admitting there is a problem, real or perceived, and having the courage and foresight to do something about it. A great place to start, is understanding the difference between Price and Cost.........

03-01-2013, 09:41 AM   #249
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IMO (and in a simplistic way) "cost" is what it takes to produce something; while "price" is what you would pay in order to get (buy) something, e.g. a final product or a service. There's also the total cost of ownership, which is indeed what you would pay "over the lifetime of ownership of the product" but doesn't fit with what else you're saying - and is unrelated to our discussion.

Extending the warranty has an associated cost, there's no use in denying that. Monochrome explained why and how; he is right (and has the knowledge). By the way, a product with no reliability issue is not the same as a perfectly reliable product (because there is no such thing, no matter the over-engineering and redundancy). It simply means the defect rate is within some acceptable margins.

Monochrome was talking about opportunity cost, in "If they decide to allocate scarce marginal capital this way, what other marginal "thing" that we want will they not do?". It is indeed a choice of what they would do at a moment of time, and if the alternative is something more effective than a longer warranty, that will be chosen. You are again assuming the benefits will be so dramatic, that alternatives should not even be considered, and that Pentax are complete idiots for considering alternatives. Well...

Personally, I'd like them to increase the warranty (up from the 2 years standard) at least for higher-end products; and I think they will benefit from that, in the end. But I won't make bold, unsubstantiated claims about it, because in the end it's them who has the data; and I would be only guessing.

QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Pentax is Perfect just the way it is...........
I can't see anything that could possibly generate such a sarcastic comment, nor the puke emoticon; definitely not monochrome's posts. Could you explain?
03-03-2013, 05:21 PM   #250
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QuoteOriginally posted by neil Quote
Unless he wants to talk in-depth about the Golden Spiral, I have much better things to do with my time.

I am so happy I am finally getting over obsessing over gear! (sorry, that was off-topic...)
Famous last word my friend....
03-06-2013, 05:55 PM - 1 Like   #251
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildimages Quote
If Pentax is convinced the SDM issue is simply a "perception" with no basis in fact, another option for them, most likely much cheaper than the already nothing it would ultimately cost them to extend the warranties of SDM lenses, would be to simply extend the warranties of the SDM Motors. Leave the basic warranty in place, at 1 year, but extend a 5 year warranty that would only apply to SDM failures.
I can just say that if Pentax would have taken such measures, I would have probably spent a good amount of money on some DA* lenses. But the often reported SDM issues have kept me away from this entire line of lenses. I don't mind the 1 year warranty for screwdrive lenses, but a longer warranty would have definitely made the DA* lenses look like safer investments.
03-07-2013, 05:02 AM   #252
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QuoteOriginally posted by Heie Quote
  • Workflow and Post Processing
    • That I'm colorblind (technically red-green color deficient - I see colors just have an issue with hues and tints and shades) and how I *HATE* tuning white balance lol
oh my gosh, how much I share this feeling!!! Colorblind also over here...
03-07-2013, 05:28 AM - 1 Like   #253
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I'm a long time faithful Pentax user, but have really started taking notice of other systems. Other manufacturers are pushing the medium forward with innovative products that photographers are asking for. Pentax has some great cameras and optics but just isn't really competitive with other brands. Does Pentax have anything in the pipeline that can wow existing users and keep them with the brand?

-Andy
03-07-2013, 05:49 AM - 1 Like   #254
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentee Quote
I'm a long time faithful Pentax user, but have really started taking notice of other systems. Other manufacturers are pushing the medium forward with innovative products that photographers are asking for. Pentax has some great cameras and optics but just isn't really competitive with other brands. Does Pentax have anything in the pipeline that can wow existing users and keep them with the brand?

-Andy
Will you kindly provide some detail about the other brands' innovations that Pentax lacks?
03-07-2013, 08:32 AM - 1 Like   #255
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Will you kindly provide some detail about the other brands' innovations that Pentax lacks?
He didn't say Innovations, he said "innovative products". Please don't twist words to make a point.

One doesn't have to go much further than the newly released consumer priced FF cameras to see his point.

But user wants and opinions aside, the position of the rest of the industry, specifically the 3rd party lens manufactures seem to be asking the same questions and apparently have the same concerns. Otherwise, they might be offering more of their new products in a Pentax mount.

We all want to see Pentax succeed, but you have to admit, they have done some pretty inane things over the past 5 years or so. I know that Richo has a plan, and we will all be happy once that plan comes to fruition, but how long are we to wait? Have they even started yet? Pentax isn't communicating to it's user base what exactly that plan is or what they plan to do. They aren't giving us any reason to remain loyal. Pentax users are a unique breed, which is something Richo should be capitalizing on. Wanting to know what "WE" think is one thing, telling us where THEY see the company in 1, 3, 5, and 10 years is quite another. This isn't a Nikon or Cannon user group of sheeple, it is a dedicated and loyal to a fault cadre of Pentax shooters who really want to be different, but are starting to feel like being different means remaining stationary while everyone else moves forward.

There's a difference between Innovative and Innovations.....and I think you know that.
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