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12-28-2013, 02:23 PM   #256
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Then again, you might be correct - they may ignore any association with professionals and market a purely enthusiast system that is different.
I dó believe in Pentax as a possible camera maker that can meet the demands of professionals, at least now that they have the backing of Ricoh, (a company that I like very much judging by what I have read about them), but I do not believe in launching a "pro system", i.e. not from scratch.
I shot Olympus for years with the SHG lenses (outstanding zoom lenses especially), and in a nutshell Olympus alienated the enthusiast following searching to compete and make a success of the 4/3 system, that was basically meant to attract professionals but simply failed completely at that. I know that the situation is very different with Pentax, Olympus also failed as a company with the neccesary scandals not helping one bit, but it was no pleasure to see a great camera and optics maker almost go under by trying to succeed too fast in a system that had not proven itself. Since my time with Olympus I don't believe in launching a completely new and ambitious system at all anymore. I much rather like the approach of Sony: just launch a model in a new product segment and suffer the critics that hate it for being a "beta" launch, but in the meantime work your way into the photographic hearts of a large enthusiast group. They have again taken this approach with the A7(r) launch. I'm not a Sony fan, but they understand that they need to find a user base before they can move their target upwards (if at all).
I would fear Pentax suffering similar losses as Olympus if they launch an overly ambitious FF system when they are so far behind in many areas to Nikon and Canon.
I would much rather, that they launch a FF system simply aiming to eploit the IQ possibilities targeted mainly at enthusiast photographers and anticipate on the growing accessibility of the FF system, and work their way up to a higher target in the coming years, until they have a solid basis for a pro model launch.
QuoteQuote:
The camera is incidental. It has a product life measured in calendar quarters.

My conclusion was and remains - watch the lenses to understand the product strategy.
Agree absolutely. I invested in 4 Zeiss ZK lenses and a sigma 500/4.5 in K mount. It's the lenses I care about, and I want FF not for the sensor, but for the field of view from the 28 and 35 wide primes. That's why I will have little bother buying a Sony A7 if Pentax decides to put the FF on a long term project diet.


Last edited by Chris Mak; 12-28-2013 at 02:32 PM.
12-28-2013, 03:09 PM   #257
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
The camera is incidental. It has a product life measured in calendar quarters.
My conclusion was and remains - watch the lenses to understand the product strategy.
When I was inquiring about the FF route, I was told something similar.

To which I agree, but the camera also completes the picture. How camera functions is very important, the styling, what unique feature is hidden inside that may give an all new meaning to lenses.

As far as we can see, Ricoh Imaging really reassesses all what is possible with current Pentax technologies. The AA-effect innovation is the result of that reassessment and more is possible. One of the results of building more on the SR is definitely increased resolution, a feature already talked about briefly before the announcement of the K-3. If implemented, that feature increases the appeal of the FF by an order of magnitude, in a similar fashion as the current APS-C image processing technologies already push Pentax into the FF territory.

Target market is same or very similar, just more of that market and an incentive to the current base: landscape photographers, enthusiasts and studio professionals.

To dwell into anything more than that, means investing a lot and directly competing with N and C, which cannot be justified.
12-28-2013, 03:26 PM   #258
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QuoteOriginally posted by Chris Mak Quote
I would fear Pentax suffering similar losses as Olympus if they launch an overly ambitious FF system when they are so far behind in many areas to Nikon and Canon.
Where I'm going with my comment - what I'm hinting - is exactly what you hope. I think we agree fairly extensively.

Pentax knows they cannot compete as a professional system out-of-the-box the way the Canon F1 or LX film camera were a system Day 1. I don't believe they'll approach the high-support part of the pro market (Reportage, Sports/Action) for a long, long time, if ever. To do so would mean years of losses and would actually cost Ricoh Corp. earnings (according to financial analysts).

There may be however natural professional markets where Pentax attributes are positives - I suppose Field/Landscape, some Wildlife (limited by lack of super-telephoto), Studio (product and portrait), maybe Wedding, if their products offer a pro a more remunerative experience.

In most cases for those markets Pentax needn't offer a complete system of cameras, lenses, accessories and support immediately. In a few cases one more product such as a high quality TC would be immensely helpful. In many cases those very attributes spill over to enthusiast.

My general opinion, from reading, talking and thinking, is that Pentax wants to be the third (dSLR) camera company - but be there by being the alternative to CaNikon rather than another CaNikon. Pentax wants to offer a different path to the image. We should be able to understand their thinking relatively quickly now. Remember they don't need to dominate. They don't need 30% of the market because they don't need to support 30% of the market. 10% would do just fine for now, thank you very much. That's a point or two from Canon, from Nikon and bits and pieces here and there from Sony, Fuji and new adopters.

I believe the lenses will be the window through which we can see thier strategy.
12-28-2013, 03:33 PM   #259
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
There may be however natural professional markets where Pentax attributes are positives - I suppose Field/Landscape, some Wildlife (limited by lack of super-telephoto),

...ehh, Monochrome, the recently released 560mm, if not in the "super-telephoto" category, how would you classify that? As anti-aircraft weaponry?

12-28-2013, 03:42 PM   #260
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QuoteOriginally posted by tclausen Quote
...ehh, Monochrome, the recently released 560mm, if not in the "super-telephoto" category, how would you classify that? As anti-aircraft weaponry?
DA 560 = 859 mm. But do we know it covers a FF image circle?
12-28-2013, 03:57 PM   #261
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QuoteOriginally posted by tclausen Quote
...ehh, Monochrome, the recently released 560mm, if not in the "super-telephoto" category, how would you classify that? As anti-aircraft weaponry?
That is strictly a landscape lens and a lens for birders. Exactly the kind Pentax is aiming to.
Not built for telephoto sports.

Last edited by Uluru; 12-28-2013 at 04:03 PM.
12-28-2013, 04:01 PM   #262
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
DA 560 = 859 mm. But do we know it covers a FF image circle?
I had a chance to try it one afternoon and can confirm DA560 is optimised for the APS-C. It was the first Pentax DA lens to have the HD designation, and it fits in the long term plan of Ricoh Imaging to build an APS-C system that is second to none.

It may work on an FF but with vignetting. The FF strategy from Ricoh Imaging will not include such super-telephoto lenses.
12-28-2013, 04:06 PM   #263
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Its vignetting is no worse than some of the Canikon's long lenses But that doesn't means it' a "full frame" lens.

12-28-2013, 05:51 PM   #264
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Its vignetting is no worse than some of the Canikon's long lenses But that doesn't means it' a "full frame" lens.
That's true. However, this lens is a strategic asset. It was made for best performance for the APS-C and was totally misunderstood next to a mere K-5. Now we have camera bodies (K-3) delivering on uncompromising image quality promise, and more than that, so folks will understand (hopefully) a valuable lesson.

PS. Please note how a Ricoh Imaging representative in the latest interview addresses the current Pentax cameras. I'm not certain if anyone was paying attention to it, but the K-50 he addresses an entry level camera, and K-3 a medium level camera.

Last edited by Uluru; 12-28-2013 at 06:00 PM.
12-28-2013, 08:34 PM   #265
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QuoteOriginally posted by kenyee Quote
I find that hard to believe in Tamron's case. It seems they've given up on Pentax's market share
Wasn't the 18-270mm zoom, introduced just over a year ago, basically a Tamron lens with value price added?
12-30-2013, 03:57 AM   #266
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QuoteOriginally posted by leonsroar Quote
Hello, ....
Thanks for the translated interview.

Seems, Pentax is learning its FF lesson. But I've never seen anybody else learn this slowly

Last edited by falconeye; 12-30-2013 at 04:06 AM.
12-30-2013, 04:41 AM   #267
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
Thanks for the translated interview.
Seems, Pentax is learning its FF lesson. But I've never seen anybody else learn this slowly
Quite the opposite. Some theoretical benefits some people are arguing about are at odds with economic realities of the company and the market.

In the pre-structure and re-structure time, under no circumstances Pentax could release an FF camera under $4,500. And no one would buy it when there are options that were cheaper and more comprehensive, all by companies that could release an FF camera well under that price. If they had released it then, people would laugh at them.

I don't see the problem in Pentax learning slowly, but in users refusing to see realities of different circumstances. Hoya could not do anything to help Pentax release a sub-$4,500 FF camera — and for everyone's notice yes, they have had a wish — but the investment needed was huge. That is why they have decided to go after the 645D instead, where the production isn't an issue, starting price isn't an issue, to help Pentax camera division at least in something (better market recognition).

For an FF to be developed, Pentax needed Ricoh, their dedication and steady investment, which happened right after the re-structure.

Last edited by Uluru; 12-30-2013 at 04:51 AM.
12-30-2013, 05:54 AM   #268
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
For an FF to be developed, Pentax needed Ricoh, their dedication and steady investment, which happened right after the re-structure.
Yes, it's great that Ricoh took interest in Pentax, they could not have done better i.m.o.
But for the launch of a digital 35mm camera, Pentax also needed the times to change to the point where digital photography is now. Due to the relatively new technology of digital sensors (relative to film), FF has been left out of mainstream accessibility so far. A system either for pros or for those who don't mind spending. I've always seen this as a temporary phase: I've not had a (digital) 35mm camera so far, because I have not seen rhyme and reason yet to the life cycle and cost combination. I have bought the FF compatible lenses, but so far have been waiting for 35mm digital to come down to mainstream accessibility,
Pentax i.m.o. made the right decision to put FF on hold and not try to compete in a demanding pro market.
Now that Apsc has pretty much reached its limits with the 24mp bodies, and Nikon Canon and Sony pulling FF in the direction of mainstream territory, ánd Pentax having the secure backing of Ricoh, it would be inexplicable if Pentax did not release a FF camera before the end of 2014. On the long term it would completely marginalize them as a serious camera maker. I don't think they can afford to wait until 2015 either, Sony is on full steam and those looking for a FF camera to use e.g. the Fa ltd's on, will see the A7(r) drop in price by the end of 2014, and if there's no concrete Pentax FF offering by then, I wonder how many will go Sony/Novoflex.
I also hope that Ricoh will have the same pricing policy on the FF as they have with the K3: realistic.
12-30-2013, 06:06 AM   #269
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QuoteOriginally posted by Chris Mak Quote
Yes, it's great that Ricoh took interest in Pentax, they could not have done better i.m.o.
But for the launch of a digital 35mm camera, Pentax also needed the times to change to the point where digital photography is now. Due to the relatively new technology of digital sensors (relative to film), FF has been left out of mainstream accessibility so far. A system either for pros or for those who don't mind spending. I've always seen this as a temporary phase: I've not had a (digital) 35mm camera so far, because I have not seen rhyme and reason yet to the life cycle and cost combination. I have bought the FF compatible lenses, but so far have been waiting for 35mm digital to come down to mainstream accessibility,
Pentax i.m.o. made the right decision to put FF on hold and not try to compete in a demanding pro market.
Now that Apsc has pretty much reached its limits with the 24mp bodies, and Nikon Canon and Sony pulling FF in the direction of mainstream territory, ánd Pentax having the secure backing of Ricoh, it would be inexplicable if Pentax did not release a FF camera before the end of 2014. On the long term it would completely marginalize them as a serious camera maker. I don't think they can afford to wait until 2015 either, Sony is on full steam and those looking for a FF camera to use e.g. the Fa ltd's on, will see the A7(r) drop in price by the end of 2014, and if there's no concrete Pentax FF offering by then, I wonder how many will go Sony/Novoflex.
I also hope that Ricoh will have the same pricing policy on the FF as they have with the K3: realistic.
I'm all with you here.
Let's hope big volumes in FF sensors generated by Sony's latest provoquing innovation will benefit to Ricoh and eventually to FF DSLR consumers.
Pentax's last chance to play more than a figuration role in FF DSLR is now, or never.
But i believe the trick is there will only be a small business margin...
This would support at least a 2 or maybe a 3 product-line straight from beginning, together with at least 2 redisigned zooms and the 3 Limited, in order to stimulate volumes.

Last edited by Zygonyx; 12-30-2013 at 06:13 AM.
12-30-2013, 07:28 AM   #270
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
I don't see the problem in Pentax learning slowly, but in users refusing to see realities of different circumstances. Hoya could not do anything to help Pentax release a sub-$4,500 FF camera — and for everyone's notice yes, they have had a wish — but the investment needed was huge. That is why they have decided to go after the 645D instead, where the production isn't an issue, starting price isn't an issue, to help Pentax camera division at least in something (better market recognition).

For an FF to be developed, Pentax needed Ricoh, their dedication and steady investment, which happened right after the re-structure.
What realities that users are refusing to see are different now from five years ago, say? If you read this article in the NY Times, it would appear that it's the camera-makers who are having trouble with reality. The reality seems to be that consumers always have and always will put connectivity (mobile, network, etc.) and convenience above quality. They are not the people who need a head-reset. If the NY Times article is correct, most camera-makers have only two choices: down, with a fixed-lens item which can-outsmartphone a smartphone, or up with products which are entirely enthusiast, specialist and with prices to match in, going forward, a much smaller market. So, on this analysis anyway, Pentax has no choice but to go up or face extinction - they've never had any presence or rep at the other end of the market. Maybe this is what they've been learning slowly?

Last edited by mecrox; 12-30-2013 at 08:13 AM.
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