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08-24-2013, 08:36 AM   #91
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Barry, please explain why would they target a market 4-5 times smaller, instead of their traditional SLR market?
Do not forget that, with all your effort, there are significant other disadvantages for which you have no answer (so you're ignoring them). Not being able to sell the lenses to APS-C users, for example.

You should take a step back and stop avoiding the obvious questions:
- what would sell in higher numbers, a MILC or a DSLR?
- what is easier, to keep your customers or to get new ones?
- what problem would they solve by changing the mount?
- how do you start a new system, with a niche product or with a higher volume products?
- why do you spend so much time promoting an idea which won't happen?

08-24-2013, 11:07 AM   #92
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Barry, please explain why would they target a market 4-5 times smaller, instead of their traditional SLR market?
I don't believe the market for a MILC is inherently that much smaller than the market for a dSLR. In other words, I don't believe that if one manufacturer launched a dSLR and another equivalent manufacturer launched a MILC that was functionally equivalent, the dSLR would automatically sell 4 to 5 times as many. I believe much of the difference is that the manufacturers are not equivalent. The comparison is not comparing like with like. The world is not cleanly divided into SLR-buyers and MILC buyers. It is probably more cleanly divided into "Canon+Nikon" buyers and "other" buyers.

I don't believe that if Pentax had two proposals for an FF camera, with primarily one main difference, the use of an optical viewfinder or an electronic viewfinder, but otherwise functional equivalence, their decision about which to go with would make a factor 4 difference in sales. At least, not a factor 4 difference in favour of the optical viewfinder!

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Do not forget that, with all your effort, there are significant other disadvantages for which you have no answer (so you're ignoring them). Not being able to sell the lenses to APS-C users, for example.
The camera I summarised would handle all normal-K-mount lenses, so any new lenses that could be designed satisfactorily with the existing K-mount would be supplied like that. Lenses would only be designed for a short registration mount where there was a specific advantage (optical quality, cost, weight, size) to do so. So users of existing APS-C Pentaxes would be able to use all the former lenses, but not the latter.

And (as I said) the camera body form I summarised could later be used for a smaller sensor. So it might eventually form the basis of an APS-C MILC with a short registration K-Mount which would accept the adapter. Those cameras would support all lenses, whether short or long registration.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
You should take a step back and stop avoiding the obvious questions:
- what would sell in higher numbers, a MILC or a DSLR?
See above. I don't believe anyone actually knows, once all the influences are taken into account.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
- what is easier, to keep your customers or to get new ones?
It is probably 50 times easier to keep a customer than get a new one. (That is an old number - I don't know what latest theory says). But Ricoh/Pentax can't afford to rely on their existing base, nor (probably) can they afford to bring out an FF camera on a "me too" basis. (Just look at the arguments raging in these forums). I think they need something new - perhaps a game-changer.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
- what problem would they solve by changing the mount?
Companies don't do things just "to solve problems". They also do things to develop new markets, or steal markets from their competitors with something that their competitors didn't see coming or can't react to. An optional short registration (optional because the camera would work both ways) is an opportunity to be exploited.

But there are problems with living with a large registration, especially where an undesirable lens construction results. I suspect that applies more to wide angle lenses, but I am not knowledgeable or ingenious enough to see all other possibilities. (I'll bet there are people in Ricoh/Pentax who could give you a much more comprehensive answer, and it would probably surprise both of us).

I have some screw-mount Pentax film SLRs, some K-mount Pentax film SLRs, some K-mount dSLRs, a Q, and a Micro Four Thirds compact. This enables me to just look inside those cameras and see the causes and effects of their mounts. The main anomalies are the dSLRs. They are using a registration designed for the mirrors of FF cameras, even though their mirrors are significantly smaller. They could have benefited from a smaller registration. But all the SLRs, film or otherwise, have a registration that is distorted by the existence of the mirror. This becomes obvious when you look inside a Micro Four Thirds or a Q. The change in registration is dramatic, and not just because of the sensor size. (The Micro Four Thirds sensor isn't that much smaller than an APS-C sensor). If the idea of a mirror hadn't been invented, I don't think anyone would seriously consider having such a bigger registration to cater for one if someone proposed a moving-mirror viewfinder.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
- how do you start a new system, with a niche product or with a higher volume products?
This isn't a new system. It is a variant on an existing system, with all existing lenses still working in it.

And often you start with a niche product, of course! (Pentax digital 645).

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
- why do you spend so much time promoting an idea which won't happen?
I am discussing the idea with a group of people who are not in control of what will happen. If I wanted to promote it, I would be elsewhere!

I would like to see your evidence that it won't happen! I suspect it won't, at least in the next year or two. But given the arguments that are raging in these forums about what Ricoh/Pentax should do / might do / can't do, I won't take a bet either way.

I wonder if similar arguments would have been made that Pentax shouldn't / wouldn't develop and release a Q-mount and continue to expand that system? That came from left field, but appears to be vindicated.
08-24-2013, 11:42 AM   #93
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Fact: the MILC market is 4-5 times smaller than the DSLR one, and while we can't say from that the numbers in which a certain product would sell, it would make a niche FF product more riskier as a MILC.
There is a lot of effort put in those MILCs, it's not like they're neglected and Pentax somehow would do it right.

It is indeed much easier to keep your existing customers, so a K-mount FF system would be more effective than a new system FF. Can Ricoh also pursue the less effective strategy? I say they don't have the resources for both, at this stage.

Any solution would solve a problem, and it's extremely important to understand which problem you're solving.
Yet the new system does not appear to solve any problem. Sure, it would make it easier to develop wide lenses... but, is that all?

New mount, new system. Just like m4/3 and EOS-M.
Nice try with the 645D, but the Pentax 645 system is much older, besides the 645D is the affordable digital medium format camera.

You are trying to gain acceptance for your idea, maybe even trying to make it appear as likely (which isn't). The burden of proof is yours, by the way.
FTR, Q was a low effort line, a FF would be on another scale. Again, nice try.
08-24-2013, 12:02 PM   #94
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Well maybe Pentax could do that wonderfull trick and once they have there hands on a sensor-module (since maybe that is the most difficult part to be able to buy it from someone) and put it in a few different camera's. Without to many troubles this could turn into three different boxes (wich camera's mainly are around a sensor offering a way to attach a lens).

So one FF sensor offering three different camera's:
- FF K-mount dslr
- FF K-mount MILC
- FF M-mount MILC

Basicly a FF K-5 for current userbase, a FF K-01 for the cheaper offering and a FF M-mount camera for the luxury customer that goes with M-mount lenses, just a few new lenses (but mainly for those who can't afford a Leica M).

08-24-2013, 12:11 PM   #95
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Buying sensors from Sony should be their smallest problem.

I'll repeat the question: what problem are you solving by supporting another manufacturer's mount?
08-24-2013, 01:05 PM   #96
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
- FF M-mount MILC
Makes no sense. Pentax implies, as do the users, as do some reviewers, that the LTD line is highly competitive with Leica lenses at a fraction of their pricing and they have AF. Plus the availability of old school manual lenses for nothing that are also competitive with Leica in certain cases without the premium of perceived value and perceived limited numbers. If anything, what would make sense is to create more LTD lenses that are faster and free of those small filter parameters, which holds back some lenses from being faster on the wide end. This will compete with Leica on that end. That is an investment. Not making a disposable niche body for someone else's lenses.

There are still CZ lenses available as new for Pentax and they are well priced. They are PK mounts. If Ricoh establishes a solid game plan and future, Zeiss and Voigtlander might be persuaded to make future runs again with the native PK mount (the 40mm Ultron is no longer available for a K-mount and sold now as a Nikon with an adapter, so it has no electronic interface with Pentax).

However, it makes zero sense for Pentax to go to Leica M. I

Last edited by snake; 08-24-2013 at 01:43 PM.
08-24-2013, 01:33 PM   #97
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Fact: the MILC market is 4-5 times smaller than the DSLR one, and while we can't say from that the numbers in which a certain product would sell, it would make a niche FF product more riskier as a MILC.
As I said, I don't believe that a proper prediction of future sales if everything is equal would show that 4-5 times. I believe it is based on the past - sales figures where not everything is equal.

Historical sales figures comparing (say) Panasonic & Fuji MILC systems versus Canon & Nikon SLR systems cannot be used to predict relatives sales in future of a Pentax FF with OVF versus a Pentax FF with EVF. There are too many extra factors to be controlled.

(But I'll bet that Ricoh/Pentax have attempted that prediction, and have estimates that we don't have).

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
There is a lot of effort put in those MILCs, it's not like they're neglected and Pentax somehow would do it right.
Who says the current makers haven't done it right, at least in engineering terms? You can do things right, but if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time, or have the wrong brand, you can still fail. The trick for Pentax would not necessarily to be better at the engineering - that may not be necessary. It would probably be to manage the transition of a total system. And I believe that is one of Pentax's strengths.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
It is indeed much easier to keep your existing customers, so a K-mount FF system would be more effective than a new system FF. Can Ricoh also pursue the less effective strategy? I say they don't have the resources for both, at this stage.
It isn't a new system! It is a variant of the existing system, in which new cameras would support every existing K-mount lens as well as the new ones. And it might be the more effective strategy. After all, these forums haven't formed a consensus on an effective strategy for Ricoh/Pentax to launch a profitable FF camera plus lenses. Perhaps Ricoh/Pentax will decide not to try for an FF camera. Or perhaps they will believe they can't win with a "me too" and go for a game-changer.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Any solution would solve a problem, and it's extremely important to understand which problem you're solving.
Yet the new system does not appear to solve any problem. Sure, it would make it easier to develop wide lenses... but, is that all?
Turn it round the other way. Suppose that all those decades ago there had been some satisfactory parallax-free viewing system that didn't involve a mirror in the optical path. Such cameras certainly wouldn't have the current registration - that is the result of the mirror. What I have called the short registration mount would actually be the normal mount. Now imagine an engineer who proposes putting a mirror into the path and increasing the registration distance to accommodate it. Everyone would roll on the floor laughing! No one would go from that shorter "normal" registration distance to the current one from free choice.

We are in a state that we would not be in from a free choice without the constraint of a mirror. As we move towards mirrorless systems, the first question is: "would we prefer to migrate over time towards the registration distance that we would have had without mirrors?" If we choose to migrate, the second question is: "how do we get there from here?" In effect, that is the question I have been answering. And I think it is easy if it isn't hurried.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
New mount, new system. Just like m4/3 and EOS-M.
Nice try with the 645D, but the Pentax 645 system is much older, besides the 645D is the affordable digital medium format camera.
Not a new system! A variation in the mount which is so similar that every camera with the new variation would support all K-mount lenses to the same extent as current cameras.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
You are trying to gain acceptance for your idea, maybe even trying to make it appear as likely (which isn't). The burden of proof is yours, by the way.
FTR, Q was a low effort line, a FF would be on another scale. Again, nice try.
I am confident that it is possible. I've spelled out the steps along the way. Neither of us can be sure what Ricoh/Pentax will actually do. We may both be saying in a year or two "I never saw that coming"!

What is the evidence that "Q was a low effort line"? A totally new mount that doesn't appear to resemble anything before. 3 cameras so far. 2 sensors so far. 7 lenses so far. A roadmap showing 2 more lenses, perhaps soon. Various other accessories. Software delivered with the cameras. A sales infrastructure to deliver many different body and lens colours. Gosh!

Can you tell us the Q system development costs?
08-24-2013, 02:17 PM   #98
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Buying sensors from Sony should be their smallest problem.

I'll repeat the question: what problem are you solving by supporting another manufacturer's mount?
The M-mount is a mount open to use. Offcourse this would be best done with an upgraded M-mount that accepts SDM-lenses and supports them with electronic connections to make modern new lenses work as we expect them while still serving all old glass with M-mount as Leica does.

In this way you have your new compact camerasystem with a new smaller flange distance, but with a huge amount off legacy glass and international userbase that could be a potential new customer for Pentax/Ricoh.

This could make a good profit making the FF system profatable for Pentax since all investments are shared among the three new camera's.

QuoteOriginally posted by snake Quote
Makes no sense. Pentax implies, as do the users, as do some reviewers, that the LTD line is highly competitive with Leica lenses at a fraction of their pricing and they have AF. Plus the availability of old school manual lenses for nothing that are also competitive with Leica in certain cases without the premium of perceived value and perceived limited numbers. If anything, what would make sense is to create more LTD lenses that are faster and free of those small filter parameters, which holds back some lenses from being faster on the wide end. This will compete with Leica on that end. That is an investment. Not making a disposable niche body for someone else's lenses.

There are still CZ lenses available as new for Pentax and they are well priced. They are PK mounts. If Ricoh establishes a solid game plan and future, Zeiss and Voigtlander might be persuaded to make future runs again with the native PK mount (the 40mm Ultron is no longer available for a K-mount and sold now as a Nikon with an adapter, so it has no electronic interface with Pentax).

However, it makes zero sense for Pentax to go to Leica M. I
There is a market for this. The cheapest Leica with the 24mp sensor costs 6299 euro, so there is room for a good profit!

I'm with you that a few new Limited lenses would make a great offering for K-mount, but can also be offered in the M-mount. A great 20mm lens and something like 100mm would be great.

QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
So one FF sensor offering three different camera's:
- FF K-mount dslr D600 pricetag
- FF K-mount MILC 7D pricetag
- FF M-mount MILC D800E pricetag
At the moment, looking at prices overhere a D600 goes for 1499 euro, a D800E for 2849 euro. The FF K-mount MILC basicly would be a FF K-01 so couldn't cost much more then what a Canon 7D does. The premiumprice would mean a very nice and unique body design (not to fancy like Marc Newson) that would speek to people who would like something different.

08-24-2013, 02:18 PM   #99
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But what's the point? Who is the market for a FF iris if the body will only be 10mm thinner, burdened down by analogue era connectivity.

This concept falls into no-man's land.

The real outcome of reducing register distance is to design and sell new lenses. Mirrorless = fly by wire using much smaller, integrated contacts and drives.

Starting from scratch on a new mount with all the advantages of mirrorless allows for integration of optics and body in a way that the older bayonet and screw mount systems cannot do.Backwards compatibility adds size, power consumption, design and QC issues, and cost. Lots of cost. think of the testing matrix. Ouch!
08-24-2013, 02:21 PM   #100
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Barry, please explain why would they target a market 4-5 times smaller, instead of their traditional SLR market?
Do not forget that, with all your effort, there are significant other disadvantages for which you have no answer (so you're ignoring them). Not being able to sell the lenses to APS-C users, for example.

You should take a step back and stop avoiding the obvious questions:
- what would sell in higher numbers, a MILC or a DSLR?
- what is easier, to keep your customers or to get new ones?
- what problem would they solve by changing the mount?
- how do you start a new system, with a niche product or with a higher volume products?
- why do you spend so much time promoting an idea which won't happen?
SUV or minivan.

It is ALWAYS keep your old ones.

None.

Either. but the former will be very expensive. The latter will be the same as others have done.

Doh! I fell into that trap.
08-24-2013, 02:33 PM   #101
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Just a wild guess...but here goes......I would bet that if Pentax dried up and blew away, 99% of the shooters here would keep shooting...with something. If the bottom line is about shooting, everything else is just interesting conversation about the "what if's" of the world.

Regards!
08-24-2013, 02:42 PM   #102
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
There is a market for this. The cheapest Leica with the 24mp sensor costs 6299 euro, so there is room for a good profit!
That's why there's Fuji and Sony, who came running to help support owners of these M-mount lenses. With Pentax spread so think on what it has already, which is essentially a bit of a skeleton line with some schizophrenia thrown in, an M-mount would just be too ridiculous. Ricoh, on the other hand, has tackled this already in a defunct camera, so it would be entirely possible they will have the niche item, if at all.
08-24-2013, 03:08 PM   #103
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Barry, sorry but a new mount, even if heavily based on the K-mount, means a new system.
It's interesting how you're for removal of the mirrors (actually, of the entire reflex viewfinder system - you're skipping the important part), but see no problem in keeping the mechanical aperture lever and the screw drive AF.

Ron, since you couldn't say what problem would be solved by going with the M-mount I will assume the answer is: none.
Then, it won't happen; Pentax does not act on our whims.
08-24-2013, 03:23 PM   #104
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QuoteOriginally posted by Barry Pearson Quote
If that "new mount for a mirrorless body" were totally different from the K-mount, that would indeed be a serious disruption and decline of a key asset.

But if it was similar but with a smaller registration distance, which could easily be bridged for K-mount lenses by a (cheap or included) glass-less tube carrying the automation signals and aperture coupling, it might be a smart move.
I'd like to see Pentax produce a MF mirrorless body using this approach, resulting in something akin to a Leica S2 with 645 compatibility and a vaguely sensible price. I wouldn't be able to afford this myself, but it would make a great halo product.
08-24-2013, 03:42 PM   #105
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Ron, since you couldn't say what problem would be solved by going with the M-mount I will assume the answer is: none.
Then, it won't happen; Pentax does not act on our whims.
Basicly I wasn't solving a problem, just addressing a market that is there to concur. And Ricoh does see something in the M-mount, so a real FF offering could be a good way to enter that market seriously.

Offering the Limited lenses also in M-mount, so Leica users can purchase them aswell.
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