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08-23-2013, 06:55 AM   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
And Olympus was always talking about how telecentricity was important, until they launched m43

Barry, I understand your point but I don't see it being a good strategy. It's short term thinking, however a mount is designed for the future. The K-mount would soon pass half a century of existence (with upgrades). Was it a mistake to not include support for M42's aperture pin?
A new mount would be their future, designed to last until the end of the world or something. It doesn't make sense to compromise it with legacy mechanisms.
I am talking about a new fully functional mount. If they'll do that, expect it to be full electric, like any non-legacy mount out there.
I think it makes total sense! My career was (among other things) helping to design complicated computer systems. Up to a certain point, it makes sense to be backward compatible, especially where multiple vendors are involved; (Sigma, etc).

Should we abandon the smallest-capacity SD cards? The earlier USB specification versions? Support in Lightroom and ACR for older camera models? Support for DNG version 1.0.0.0? Where is the line drawn? These have to be decided on a case by case basis according to their impact on users and the risks to take-up. Big companies can sometimes get away with it. Pentax has consistently made a point of emphasising support for its legacy, and I don't think it should take that risk.

I can imagine that, after launching a full-specification camera, Ricoh/Pentax would then release a cut-down version without those features for entry-level sales. (A bit like cutting down the K-50 to make a cheaper K-500).

08-23-2013, 07:00 AM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
The negative reaction is not generated by fear; that's a silly way of downplaying solid arguments. It's about things like the following:
- people like me want DSLRs, not EVF cameras (even more so when talking about the better FF viewfinder). We're a far larger market than the EVF one.
- changing the mount is a hassle; and doing it for no benefit? It's a huge mistake to believe we would simply give up on OVFs, and buy adapters, and accept losing 2-way compatibility with our cameras and lenses.
A new mount should not retain mechanical aperture and AF linkages, by the way; it should be full electric. No sense to include old style technology in a mount designed for the future.
- starting a new system with one expensive camera made for the 4 times smaller MILC market would be much more difficult than expanding the existing K-mount system into FF territory. For lenses, the difference would be dramatic: it would be impossible to share them with the much larger APS-C user base.
Fear is a nuanced word, so don't assume it means exactly what you might think. Regardless of that, I don't think there's a solid argument that can be made against a system that allows another mirrorless body into the range, while keeping flexibility with the lenses it mounts. If it couldn't be done economically, I don't think it would be done, but if other manufacturers are allowing Pentax SLR lenses to be used on their bodies with limited adapters, there is nothing wrong with Ricoh developing a Pentax body that can do the same with full lens functionality. And who said anything about giving up on OVFs? I fully agree with you on the benefit of an optical viewfinder, especially on a larger-sensor body, but if there's profit to be made on another system of this type, why wouldn't we applaud it, even if we don't want one ourselves?
08-23-2013, 07:19 AM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by gazonk Quote
Who says I don't want screw drive? I have nothing but screw drive (and MF) lenses

So you're basically saying you'd like a new mount with shorter register distance but still screw drive AF. Hmm! Maybe not a bad idea after all, but will the market accept a completely new system with noisy AF?
It is only noisy when screw-drive lenses are used! (Personally, I'm not particularly bothered by the noise a lot of the time. If I'm shooting a landscape with my DA 12-24mm f/4, I really don't mind the noise!) New lenses are likely to have (say) SDM.

And what I suggest here won't be "a completely new system". It would functionally be a full K-mount system but with a smaller registration distance that can be bridged by the logical equivalence of a short automatic extension tube.
08-23-2013, 07:21 AM   #49
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These are all interesting discussions, but there is a reality we rarely consider.

Ricoh's entire focus right now is getting as many K-mount, Q-mount and 645-mount cameras into the market as they possibly can, as soon as they possibly can. They want to increase the installed base of these three mounts across the globe so that there is a proprietary future market for lenses and accessories. That's what colored K and Q bodies is all about.

Given a limited production capacity (at some point production capacity is always limited; at that point a new plant must be built), which of the existing Pentax or Ricoh products or mounts would you discontinue to make room for the new, shorter-register K-mount, and how would you alter the long term business plan for increasing the installed based of (whichever) mount was carried on the discontinued product? Don't forget, lenses are where the profit is, so which lenses would you discontinue - or which planned new introductions would you make in the shorter register distance instead?.

Pentax is committed to K-mount (at the 45.46mm register distance), Q and 645. Q is their short register distance, mirrorless camera line, which they intend to develop into a Q System over time. They view Q as their real growth line.

08-23-2013, 07:29 AM   #50
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
It is only noisy when screw-drive lenses are used! (Personally, I'm not particularly bothered by the noise a lot of the time. If I'm shooting a landscape with my DA 12-24mm f/4, I really don't mind the noise!) New lenses are likely to have (say) SDM.

And what I suggest here won't be "a completely new system". It would functionally be a full K-mount system but with a smaller registration distance that can be bridged by the logical equivalence of a short automatic extension tube.


That's what I would do. It would come with two adapters. One for legacy DA lenses. A dumb spacer. The second adapter would have a have a focal reducing telecompressor for all the legacy F, FA, and manual glass. Both adapters would pass through auto focus and control pins. That would be a very versatile setup.

And if I really had my way, auto focusing spacers for old manual glass would be options. An SDM version of the old F AF 1.7x and a new 0.75X SDM telecompressor.
08-23-2013, 07:30 AM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by RobA_Oz Quote
Fear is a nuanced word, so don't assume it means exactly what you might think. Regardless of that, I don't think there's a solid argument that can be made against a system that allows another mirrorless body into the range, while keeping flexibility with the lenses it mounts. If it couldn't be done economically, I don't think it would be done, but if other manufacturers are allowing Pentax SLR lenses to be used on their bodies with limited adapters, there is nothing wrong with Ricoh developing a Pentax body that can do the same with full lens functionality. And who said anything about giving up on OVFs? I fully agree with you on the benefit of an optical viewfinder, especially on a larger-sensor body, but if there's profit to be made on another system of this type, why wouldn't we applaud it, even if we don't want one ourselves?
Yup! Pentax users are not a homogeneous set of people with a narrow range of equipment. It is a major strength of the system that so many different needs are catered for. Some people like Limited lenses. Although I've used Pentax SLRs for about 46 years and a have a good set of lenses, I've never used a Limited lens nor or (I think) even seen one!

Pentax will be releasing any new camera into an environment that is very complicated, and it will succeed or fail according to how well it handles that complexity. (Wouldn't it be strange if a new camera at the K-mount level couldn't handle the lenses that a Q can handle with its K adapter?)
08-23-2013, 07:49 AM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
Why not? Those are things that Teleconverters and extensions tubes can do. They are things that can be built into such a new mount and such camera.
You are pretty much describing the Ricoh GXR system but with an in-body screwdrive to run legacy AF glass.
08-23-2013, 08:41 AM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by RobA_Oz Quote
Fear is a nuanced word, so don't assume it means exactly what you might think. Regardless of that, I don't think there's a solid argument that can be made against a system that allows another mirrorless body into the range, while keeping flexibility with the lenses it mounts. If it couldn't be done economically, I don't think it would be done, but if other manufacturers are allowing Pentax SLR lenses to be used on their bodies with limited adapters, there is nothing wrong with Ricoh developing a Pentax body that can do the same with full lens functionality. And who said anything about giving up on OVFs? I fully agree with you on the benefit of an optical viewfinder, especially on a larger-sensor body, but if there's profit to be made on another system of this type, why wouldn't we applaud it, even if we don't want one ourselves?
My point is, there are solid rational arguments against it. Just read my previous post.
Also, read monochrome's post; it's not possible to just add a new system, you'll have to give up on something as well. Giving up on a K-mount FF for this would have dire consequences; they would lose their users support, they would lose economy of scale for the lenses, K-mount development would be hindered by the need of launching new mount lenses. All this, in order to go mirrorless the wrong way - with a niche camera.
I would not applaud such a mistake. Fortunately, I know it won't happen.

08-23-2013, 08:48 AM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
And what I suggest here won't be "a completely new system". It would functionally be a full K-mount system but with a smaller registration distance that can be bridged by the logical equivalence of a short automatic extension tube.
What you are suggesting is to continue fighting with screw drive AF and mechanical aperture lever while the competition is full electric and switching to aperture and focus systems better suited for video.
Well, maybe Pentax would be able to make a mount with legacy systems only used through adapted lenses, effectively increasing the cost, complexity and size for all cameras sold, regardless if the user would want it or not. More likely, IMO, they would push this job to an adapter.

However, we know it wont happen - not in the near future anyway. It's K-mount, 645, Q.
08-23-2013, 08:56 AM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
These are all interesting discussions, but there is a reality we rarely consider.

Ricoh's entire focus right now is getting as many K-mount, Q-mount and 645-mount cameras into the market as they possibly can, as soon as they possibly can. They want to increase the installed base of these three mounts across the globe so that there is a proprietary future market for lenses and accessories. That's what colored K and Q bodies is all about.

Given a limited production capacity (at some point production capacity is always limited; at that point a new plant must be built), which of the existing Pentax or Ricoh products or mounts would you discontinue to make room for the new, shorter-register K-mount, and how would you alter the long term business plan for increasing the installed based of (whichever) mount was carried on the discontinued product? Don't forget, lenses are where the profit is, so which lenses would you discontinue - or which planned new introductions would you make in the shorter register distance instead?.

Pentax is committed to K-mount (at the 45.46mm register distance), Q and 645. Q is their short register distance, mirrorless camera line, which they intend to develop into a Q System over time. They view Q as their real growth line.
Those are good questions. Without knowing the resources available and production costs I can't give a full answer. But some aspects of a potential short-register mount can make some of the choices easier.

A camera with such a mount, but with the adapter fitted, (perhaps even built in and extendable), is at that time a "normal" K-mount camera. It might even be a useful camera to develop and sell even if initially it is only usable in full K-mount mode. It would look a bit like current K-mount cameras, but the body would be thinner and it would have a sticking-out lens-mount. (I should say "an even thinner body with an even more sticking-out lens mount" - cameras are already built that way!)

The lenses that would be released for the shorter registration would be those where there was a specific technical or sales advantage. Wide-angle lenses are one possibility, within the limits of catering for the edges & corners of the sensor. Lighter-weight zooms may be another. It wouldn't be the first time lenses were released that didn't work on old cameras - except for those willing to use MF, SDM-only lenses (I have 2 of them) won't work on some older cameras. It is more important that old lenses work with new cameras than that old cameras work with new lenses.

(I'm building up a comprehensive Q system, and I'm glad that Ricoh/Pentax are talking it seriously. I'm worried that they may not be talking the K system so seriously, because I'm not switching from K to Q, but rather intending to have separate systems for very different purposes and occasions).
08-23-2013, 08:56 AM   #56
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Just wait and see what is PENTAX/RICOH next flagship camera is named... if they name it PENTAX, I think the PENTAX name will stay.

I would like to see:
Interchangable lenses camera - PENTAX (as PENTAX is more famous)
Compact camera - RICOH (as GR is more famous)
08-23-2013, 09:01 AM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
My point is, there are solid rational arguments against it. Just read my previous post.
Also, read monochrome's post; it's not possible to just add a new system, you'll have to give up on something as well. Giving up on a K-mount FF for this would have dire consequences; they would lose their users support, they would lose economy of scale for the lenses, K-mount development would be hindered by the need of launching new mount lenses. All this, in order to go mirrorless the wrong way - with a niche camera.
I would not applaud such a mistake. Fortunately, I know it won't happen.
I wonder if this is what a Pentax FF should be like!

When I first suggested such a short-registration mount elsewhere, I was speculating that this might be how Ricoh/Pentax introduces a game-changing FF rather than a me-too FF.
08-23-2013, 09:14 AM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
Those are good questions. Without knowing the resources available and production costs I can't give a full answer. But some aspects of a potential short-register mount can make some of the choices easier.
I wrote that to illustrate the complexity of the camera extends well beyond just the camera. One BIG advantage Ricoh brings to the Pentax table is MUCH more modern manufacturing techniques and processes.
QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
It wouldn't be the first time lenses were released that didn't work on old cameras - except for those willing to use MF, SDM-only lenses (I have 2 of them) won't work on some older cameras. It is more important that old lenses work with new cameras than that old cameras work with new lenses

(I'm building up a comprehensive Q system, and I'm glad that Ricoh/Pentax are talking it seriously. I'm worried that they may not be talking the K system so seriously, because I'm not switching from K to Q, but rather intending to have separate systems for very different purposes and occasions)..
They'll not likely need to make the distinction between old lens / new camera and old camera / new lens. Eventually (25 year termns) K-mount will atrophy anyway. Some new technology will make it redundant.
QuoteOriginally posted by LFLee Quote
Just wait and see what is PENTAX/RICOH next flagship camera is named... if they name it PENTAX, I think the PENTAX name will stay.

I would like to see:
Interchangable lenses camera - PENTAX (as PENTAX is more famous)
Compact camera - RICOH (as GR is more famous)
The flagship dSLR and professional cameras will be badged Pentax. That statement was made as recently as July 12th. Compacts and new technologies will be badged Ricoh - also stated July 12th.

QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
I wonder if this is what a Pentax FF should be like!

When I first suggested such a short-registration mount elsewhere, I was speculating that this might be how Ricoh/Pentax introduces a game-changing FF rather than a me-too FF.
See above statement. Taking into account production expertise (Ricoh holds patents and proprietary processes in this area. Custom colors can becmoe a manufacturing hallmark), combine "Any FF camera we release will be different" with "We are committed to Pentax for dSLR's and professional cameras but Ricoh will get new technologies" and what do you imagine?

Last edited by monochrome; 08-23-2013 at 09:24 AM.
08-23-2013, 10:18 AM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
A camera with such a mount, but with the adapter fitted, (perhaps even built in and extendable), is at that time a "normal" K-mount camera. It might even be a useful camera to develop and sell even if initially it is only usable in full K-mount mode. It would look a bit like current K-mount cameras, but the body would be thinner and it would have a sticking-out lens-mount. (I should say "an even thinner body with an even more sticking-out lens mount" - cameras are already built that way!)

The lenses that would be released for the shorter registration would be those where there was a specific technical or sales advantage. Wide-angle lenses are one possibility, within the limits of catering for the edges & corners of the sensor. Lighter-weight zooms may be another. It wouldn't be the first time lenses were released that didn't work on old cameras - except for those willing to use MF, SDM-only lenses (I have 2 of them) won't work on some older cameras. It is more important that old lenses work with new cameras than that old cameras work with new lenses.
Ricoh will not launch a system without being commited - this means lenses and accessories made for it. Your camera which would be useless without the adapter and legacy lenses doesn't make sense.
08-23-2013, 10:18 AM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Taking into account production expertise (Ricoh holds patents and proprietary processes in this area. Custom colors can becmoe a manufacturing hallmark), combine "Any FF camera we release will be different" with "We are committed to Pentax for dSLR's and professional cameras but Ricoh will get new technologies" and what do you imagine?
Well, yes we hear it. But I don't think their distinction holds much water. You cannot really rope off "dSLR's and professional cameras" from "new technologies", though that phrase is too vague to mean much. New technologies must often start in the professional arena and move down the scale as they are perfected and their unit cost falls. Eventually Ricoh may well be faced with some tricky decisions about what goes to Pentax and what goes to Ricoh, not least because Pentax cameras have to remain cutting-edge or their reputation and sales will suffer. For now, perhaps Ricoh's statements are more aspirations about a work in progress. The way the chips actually fall could be quite different (and not a reason to complain either). I expect we'll find out before too long.
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