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08-05-2013, 05:49 PM - 2 Likes   #61
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeff knight Quote
A hypothetical analogy: The McDonald corporation buys Burger King. They announce that they are now incorporated as BK-McDonalds then suddenly they drop the BK and go back to being just McDonalds, but they still assure everybody not to worry because they will still be selling the Whopper sandwich which will continue to exist at the "product level".

You are a Pentax optical engineer. Your company sells to the hugely profitable Ricoh ltd. so you start to worry about what exactly this will be like! They tell you that you are now part of Pentax-Ricoh. Not to worry. You are a Pentax optical engineer and the Pentax name comes first. Then the company name is changed back to Ricoh. R&D elements of both companies are combined. You can guess who has the final say over what happens next, management and R&D.

Maybe the new McWhopper sandwich will be the best yet, but maybe not.
I don't give a hoot what it's called. If they decided to rename the Pentax FA Limiteds the Ricoh FA Limiteds, I'd still buy them. If it's a good piece of gear that helps me take good photos, I'm not going to let semantic nostalgia cloud my vision.

08-05-2013, 05:53 PM   #62
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeff knight Quote
A hypothetical analogy: The McDonald corporation buys Burger King. They announce that they are now incorporated as BK-McDonalds then suddenly they drop the BK and go back to being just McDonalds, but they still assure everybody not to worry because they will still be selling the Whopper sandwich which will continue to exist at the "product level".

You are a Pentax optical engineer. Your company sells to the hugely profitable Ricoh ltd. so you start to worry about what exactly this will be like! They tell you that you are now part of Pentax-Ricoh. Not to worry. You are a Pentax optical engineer and the Pentax name comes first. Then the company name is changed back to Ricoh. R&D elements of both companies are combined. You can guess who has the final say over what happens next, management and R&D.

Maybe the new McWhopper sandwich will be the best yet, but maybe not.
How 'bout this: Pillsbury buys a faltering Burger King (which had previously been Instaburger) in a fairly hostile takeover, changes the corporate name to Pillsbury Burger King and makes it very clear that they have no interest in burgers, only the medical division (BK must have one, considering how much Maalox is sold because of them ). They lay off numerous corporate chefs and tell franchise owners they will only deal with them through the distributors, and virtually abandon several major markets. Four years later, they sell the burger part of Burger King to McDonalds for a song. McDonalds changes the corporate name, but says repeatedly that they will keep the Burger King brand because it has a presence where they do not (not accurate for McD/BK, but consider Carl's Jr./Hardees or Rally's/Checkers - the same menus, but different names in different markets).

I don't see how Pentax' engineers can be any more worried under Ricoh than they were under Hoya. At least Ricoh is saying they want to keep them around, even if they are saying it on Ricoh letterhead.
08-05-2013, 06:24 PM   #63
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeff knight Quote
A hypothetical analogy: The McDonald corporation buys Burger King. They announce that they are now incorporated as BK-McDonalds then suddenly they drop the BK and go back to being just McDonalds, but they still assure everybody not to worry because they will still be selling the Whopper sandwich which will continue to exist at the "product level".

You are a Pentax optical engineer. Your company sells to the hugely profitable Ricoh ltd. so you start to worry about what exactly this will be like! They tell you that you are now part of Pentax-Ricoh. Not to worry. You are a Pentax optical engineer and the Pentax name comes first. Then the company name is changed back to Ricoh. R&D elements of both companies are combined. You can guess who has the final say over what happens next, management and R&D.

Maybe the new McWhopper sandwich will be the best yet, but maybe not.
Cameras aren't consumables.

The exact thing happened to me. The EXACT thing. Joint name, then my company name memory-holed. I wrote about it earlier, up-thread.

My letterhead and business card have changed. The sign on my office door has changed. My personal website URL has changed.

My business philosophy, my business process, my business products and my.business clients are completely, totally and absolutely unchanged. The acquiring company's employees all had to learn my company's systems and now use my company's processes and products. I helped train them on an aspect of the systems which I helped design and develop over the last twenty years.

You write a hypothetical and you are making up things to worry about.

I'm stating facts. Mr. Kawauchi stated facts. Ricoh did not acquire Pentax to destroy it.

Tell ya what though. I'm out. I don't care any more if this entire Forum wants to obsess and project the EOTWAWKI. Ricoh is an evil corporate raider and they're softening us up to kill the K-mount, obsolete our mountains of legacy lenses, and never sell a camera in black again?

This is worse than the K-01 spring.

Last edited by monochrome; 08-06-2013 at 11:34 AM.
08-05-2013, 06:40 PM   #64
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Two very different scenarios are being wrongly co-mingled in this thread:

1) Two companies in the same business are combined
2) Two companies in different businesses and/or markets are combined

Ricoh's acquisition of Pentax is clearly scenario #1. Citing examples that resemble scenario #2 really have nothing to do with Pentax/Ricoh.

08-05-2013, 07:45 PM   #65
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I'm stating facts. Mr. Kawauchi stated facts. Ricoh did not acquire Pentax to destroy it.
..
Ricoh invested into former Asahi's optical and cameras on the condition that Ricoh may continue to use name Pentax. No Pentax name, no deal.
Hoya was very much desperate to get rid of the cameras part of the company, the agreement was made.


QuoteQuote:

This is worse than the K-01 spring.
Only lack of action. Pentax users are tortured and grilled slowly.

Last edited by Uluru; 08-05-2013 at 08:33 PM.
08-05-2013, 09:23 PM   #66
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wow.... I just translated 3 paragraphs from Page 2 of the article regarding FF, but after I hit "post", the message is empty.
Oh well.... 30mins of efforts gone. :-(

Will see if I have time to type that up again tomorrow.
08-05-2013, 10:36 PM   #67
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeff knight Quote
You are a Pentax optical engineer. Your company sells to the hugely profitable Ricoh ltd. so you start to worry about what exactly this will be like! They tell you that you are now part of Pentax-Ricoh. Not to worry. You are a Pentax optical engineer and the Pentax name comes first. Then the company name is changed back to Ricoh. R&D elements of both companies are combined. You can guess who has the final say over what happens next, management and R&D.
Would an optical engineer really care if he's working on Pentax and Ricoh branded products for a company called Pentax Ricoh, or on Pentax and Ricoh branded products for a company called Ricoh?

And you've forgotten something: Ricoh bought Pentax. It was obvious from day 1 who has the final say over matters, don't you think?

LFLee, it appears there's there was a forum glitch... promptly fixed by Adam.

Last edited by Kunzite; 08-05-2013 at 11:41 PM.
08-06-2013, 12:16 AM - 4 Likes   #68
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Right, I will provide my own translation for the chapter regarding name change and FF, but keep in mind these text had already been translated from Japanese to Chinese, therefore it's impossible to get the exact wording, I am pretty much translating the whole thing literally to avoid more confusion.

Q: will Pentax name still exist
A: Yes, Pentax will continue to exist on a product level, staff had not taken the name change all that seriously, it's not the first time Pentax had changed owner, furthermore in the olden days Pentax brand did not represent the whole company, it was a product brand of Asahi Optic Co.

Q: Integration of product line, will PENTAX and Ricoh further integrate, even cancelling PENTAX brand altogether in the end?
A: As for now the company had no intention to do so, it is well known that Ricoh does not produce SLR in the digital era, so PENTAX name will still be used in the professional areas, also some products that are unique to PENTAX will remain, like the compact Q system, rugged WG compact series, on the other hand some consumer level product that are lacking in unique feature might face adjustments.

The 2 company had already been integrated, staff from both companies are already sharing office in the Japanese HQ, difference is that for some staff it takes a bit longer to get to work. Staff from both side, especially the technical staff are getting really excited about the integration, as it enables sharing of knowledge and enabling them to work on more stuff, for example some Ricoh technician had always wanted to develop DSLRs and now have the opportunity to do so. The new development team are working on some high end product, but I can not reveal what those might be.

Q: Pentax FF DSLR?
A: Development of FF encounter a lot of problems, but the development team are working to overcome them, they had not abandon the project.



There you go, that's the name change and FF part, he actually addressed the issue why Pentax is not following the megapixal race in the next paragraph, but it's not relevant so I will skip that.


Last edited by elpolodiablo; 08-06-2013 at 12:58 AM.
08-06-2013, 04:20 AM   #69
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Thank you for your translation!

But this

QuoteOriginally posted by elpolodiablo Quote
Q: Pentax FF DSLR?
A: Development of FF encounter a lot of problems, but the development team are working to overcome them, they had not abandon the project.[/U][/I]
doesn't sound very promising to me. Is it a japanese way of saying "no FF before 2015" ?

Also "they had not abandon the project" means that they had thought about it at some point, and they may think about it in the future if they are facing too much problems.

So the Pentax FF is definitely not a given.
08-06-2013, 05:05 AM   #70
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QuoteOriginally posted by NickLarsson Quote
Thank you for your translation!

But this



doesn't sound very promising to me. Is it a japanese way of saying "no FF before 2015" ?

Also "they had not abandon the project" means that they had thought about it at some point, and they may think about it in the future if they are facing too much problems.

So the Pentax FF is definitely not a given.
I forgot to provide a bit of context here, There was another phrase before this paragraph, original being

宾得近来的新品重心其实在小型无反相机Q7上,不过貌似在中国大家的关注点更多还是在宾得做不做全画幅的问题上。川内先生表示,这一路上已经向其他媒体解释无数遍了,但我还是很没节操的又问了一遍,“现在宾得的全画幅怎么样了?”。

Translate as
Recent development focus of PENTAX is currently on mirrorless Q7, but it seems in China most people are focus more on the question of whether or not PENTAX will be producing FF DSLR. Mr Kawauchi replied he's been through this subject with countless media outlet along the way(media tour I assume), I still asked again regardless: "How is the development on PENTAX FF?"

Followed by

他解释道,目前是有很多问题,但技术人员一直在努力,并没有放弃这个计划。

A strictly word by word translation will be

He(Mr Kawauchi) explained, there are a lot of problems at the moment, but technicians are constantly working on them, they have not abandon this project.

The rest of the paragraph I will include below because I think it will provide context to to the statement above:

So we asked Mr Kawauchi about other brand had swithed to higher MP CMOS, what is PENTAX's reaction(Even Canon had replaced the acient CMOS in the new 70D). Mr Kawauchi said, camera is a complete system, upgrade is not simply raising MP count or change to a new CMOS, we must be responsible for the product, it's not hard getting a high MP CMOS(in the camera), but you have to develop more advanced related technology like image processing engine etc to match the CMOS , or else high ISO and other performances will suffer, they will not follow the herd blindly.



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------End of literal translation, my thought below, skip if you want to just read the translation and make up your own mind-------------------------------------------------------------------------------




I think I picked up 2 points in Mr Kawauchi's response regarding FF,

1. it is definitely 'in development', since he mentioned 'there are a lot of problems at the moment' when asked about the state of PENTAX FF, the remaining statement at the end of the sentence is to assure the interviewer the project is still a go. Do you expect development of a top of the line digital FF will be smooth sailing? Of course there will be problems along the way, he assure us they are working on it that's all. As of stage of development and release date, it's anybody's guess, Mr Kawauchi is keeping it very close to his chest.

2. from the following statement stating you have to match new CMOS sensors with adequate supporting technology like new image processing engine( I assume buffer, SR system, etc as well), and they must be responsible for their product, I gather it means they will not put out a half baked product, no matter how much people on internet forums keep wailing about ' FF now or I will jump ship', you have to remember Pentax K-5 and Nikon D7000 uses practically the same CMOS but PENTAX engineers squeezed a little bit more performance out of it with their supporting hardware, I am purely guessing here, but I think Prime II engine was deemed not up to the task of handling new generation of sensors so PENTAX is working on a replacement. I for one am really looking forward to a PENTAX K-mount digital FF, but I am not one of those people demanding PENTAX releasing it yesterday.

Last edited by elpolodiablo; 08-06-2013 at 05:15 AM.
08-06-2013, 05:14 AM   #71
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QuoteOriginally posted by NickLarsson Quote
Thank you for your translation!

But this
doesn't sound very promising to me. Is it a japanese way of saying "no FF before 2015" ?
...
No, it is Chinese way of translation. Original Japanese was formulated who knows how.
You are lost in translation.

It could simply mean "we are facing some issues", and exact issues correspond to desired design goal. Have two cameras using same sensor but different design, and issues will be totally different. So we have no clue whatsoever.

If Ricoh has aimed higher in FF reach than what PF members dream about, normally they may encounter some issues they have never encountered before. Another point is that "an issue" can be anything — from a decision making strategy, to component supply, to an engineering problem, to lens related problems. Maybe they face "an issue of not enough lenses" ... etc. Or, "we can't make it by the end of this month issue "... Or, maybe they want to make an FF camera impossibly small, or, they want to price it so competitively it flies off the shelves immediately, and thus they have an issue deciding how to split the lineup, etc.

Or they have a issue deciding what colours and what wooden grips to use for camera bodies.

In other words, let's give up on this — admit we don't have a clue — and NOT turn everything into the damn "it's the end of the world" ... issue.

Last edited by Uluru; 08-06-2013 at 05:19 AM.
08-06-2013, 05:23 AM - 1 Like   #72
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I bet $10 million that Pentax has at least 2 working FF protoypes on the go at any given time. I bet they've even mapped out the supply chain and assembly system.

They are likely hung up by:

1) Price point given the very high cost of the sensor and necessary surrounding technology. A $2,000 camera body has a small market.

2) Lenses. The need to ramp up a large # of new designs for FF sensors. This is where the long-term costs of FF are recouped, not the bodies. Doubling their production capacity for 10% more users over APS-C is a hard thing to allocate capital towards.

3) Changing tech. ON-sensor CDAF advancements and other impending technologies create all sorts of issues for putting out a last gen model as your next flagship. Invest wrong and you lose as the competitor is a step ahead.

4) Changing market. While many prosumers prefer larger cameras, market growth is more towards smaller systems either as standalone entities (Nikon 1, Pentax Q) or as second systems. Because the price point is so high the FF market is far likelier to reach saturation before APS-C; the latter is well within the disposable income of the middle class, but all FF is in the luxury zone. A Pentax FF could be chasing diminishing market simply because the large camera is less desirable in a web-sharing world.

5) Used Canikon and Sony models. There is a substantial and growing supply of pro bodies on the used market at low price points. Generally these are very robust and serviceable models tied to larger ecosystems of lenses, flashes, service, etc. This makes a 'value' FF Pentax puts out a hard sell.

All of this becomes easier if FF sensors price wars get going and Sony is not the only game in town.
08-06-2013, 05:26 AM   #73
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
No, it is Chinese way of translation. Original Japanese was formulated who knows how.
You are lost in translation.

It could simply mean "we are facing some issues", and exact issues correspond to desired design goal. Have two cameras using same sensor but different design, and issues will be totally different. So we have no clue whatsoever.

If Ricoh has aimed higher in FF reach than what PF members dream about, normally they may encounter some issues they have never encountered before. Another point is that "an issue" can be anything — from a decision making strategy, to component supply, to an engineering problem, to lens related problems. Maybe they face "an issue of not enough lenses" ... etc. Or, "we can't make it by the end of this month issue "... Or, maybe they want to make an FF camera impossibly small, or, they want to price it so competitively it flies off the shelves immediately, and thus they have an issue deciding how to split the lineup, etc.

Or they have a issue deciding what colours and what wooden grips to use for camera bodies.

In other words, let's give up on this — admit we don't have a clue — and NOT turn everything into the damn "it's the end of the world" ... issue.
Hahaha, so true, I think I project a little bit of my own feeling into the translation of that text as well, but what you do, you can't be completely neutral. It's Japanese>Chinese>English, a lot of things can be lost in translation between even 2 languages, I bet even if there is a Japanese version of the interview and read by a few different native Japanese speakers you will still get different picture from the same text....Like I said, read into it as you like, we can never get an exact picture of what is going on in the PENTAX/RICOH joint development team....
08-06-2013, 05:48 AM   #74
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Wendy's bought Tim Hortons and yet there are thousands of Tim Hortons everywhere in Canada and you can still get a box of Tim Bits with your Double Double. SAAB, Volvo and Jag brands remainded after Ford or GM bought them out (yes I know that SAAB is now no more) and is it a BMW Mini? I thought they were Mini Coopers. HOw many brands do either Kraft or General Foods sell under?

The place I work for is also changing names from Canadian Forces to Canadian Armed Forces. Will mean nothing at all to 99.99999% of us employed there. It may mean the base is now CAFB instead of CFB but the locals will still call it The Base or Suffield. No change no fears,

I had only just built up a full system of Pentax cameras for my wife and myself and then the K mount appeared. Changes do happen. I think it will be harder for Pentax to change mounts now then in the past but a mount change will come for Pentax as well as for Nikon and Canon. Maybe not this year or this decade but within this century. But for now it appears Ricoh purchased Pentax to sell Pentax cameras and that is what they are going to do. Too many people also perceive that whatever piece of equipment they personallly desire is what is most needed for Pentax to produce to survive. I am sure that whatever products are put out are a mixture of what the marketing department deems most needed, what R&D believe is market ready and what faciilities are free for the actual production. I have none of that information hence I have no idea what comes out next. I am pretty sure thought that the next Pentax camera that comes out will have the Pentax brand, will be a good camera and will have on this forum those who think it is the best thing since sliced bread (we buy unsliced bread) and those who claim this new model is proof that Pentax is doomed.

For myself whatever model Pentax comes out with next matters little as my wife just picked up a K5 which is still a good camera and I have only about 23 thousand shots on my K-r so still gettting to know it. My guess it will be a replacement for the K5II and it may be called the K5III to be in line with the K50/K500 naming. Either that or some thing else
08-06-2013, 06:34 AM   #75
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Ricoh would NOT want to release a FF DSLR without the appropriate lenses being available at the same time, otherwise, people would buy Sigma and Tamron lenses and they'd miss out on the initial market boost. So, as has been said, they will be working one a system and not just a camera.
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