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12-21-2013, 09:02 AM - 1 Like   #31
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To me, this was the most important statement:

"Well, if discussing about whether we go with FF or not, yes we will. However, it is our understanding that it doesn’t make sense if we spoil development of other mounts’ cameras and lenses. It is our current challenge."

Clearly, Ricoh is coming out with a FF sensor camera. They also are not going to poison their APS-C business in the process and maybe this is a reference to pursuing a different overall strategy than Canon and Nikon. Also, the baseball reference tells me they won't put out a FF camera for the sake of just having one, To that end, I think they perceive the A99 lacks traction in the marketplace and therefore their goal is not to make another A99. The fastball down the middle means it's going to be a great camera that either is a wild success or a complete flop. It won't be a "get me over" curve ball.

12-21-2013, 09:11 AM   #32
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I have an impression that this interview is made not to inform, but to mislead. I know, looks like a nonsense, but that's my impression. Only expected development informations, nothing new. And I remember the near past. Did we have a clue about K-3 one month before announcement. None. I bet will be the same with FF, and it will likely come next fall, when K-3 will be an year old camera, or a little earlier.
12-21-2013, 09:37 AM   #33
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Ok, so what can be a "wild success" today?
Perhaps a camera as small as the A7, but with mirror?
The interview hints that an OVF seems more probable?
12-21-2013, 09:49 AM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by blende8 Quote
Ok, so what can be a "wild success" today?
Perhaps a camera as small as the A7, but with mirror?
The interview hints that an OVF seems more probable?
My guess would be a camera with similar specs to D800, SR on the sensor, a little faster frame rate, smaller size and priced between the D600 and D800.

12-21-2013, 09:57 AM   #35
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Interesting interview, many thanks for the translation. However, the most interesing part for me were parts like these:

"There are customers who believe in that the size of image sensor ultimately equal to camera’s quality and other factors are not so important. In Australia, recently, I was told by one of customers that the size of image sensor represents whole quality of the camera, FF is the best."

"After the race ended not meaningfully, manufacturers who focused on power started facing hard time and the small others who kept focusing on quality survived."

"it doesn’t make sense if we spoil development of other mounts’ cameras and lenses."



It kind of perfectly reflects my journey. I started with the K100Ds, got a K5 as a present, got all the limiteds, sold them and bought a Canon 5D (twice eventually). By now, I realize some of my best pictures have been taken with the K100Ds with the Kits. Extensive browsing at 500px reveals, there is only a small amount of pictures requiring the extra stop of DOF, and my 5D is on the shelf for most of the time due to usability. I only use with a 35/2. So I am going to sell the Canon stuff.

It all comes down to creativity and how much you like your gear. Quality is so good by now across brands, that it does not really matter what you pic up. For Pentax, I love their bodies and I am more than happy to read the see some gaps in the lense lineup as well.... Interesting times ahead...
12-21-2013, 10:19 AM   #36
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Did you really expect him to lay out the product plan for the company?

Camera technology is improving by leaps and bounds.. in a few years it will be somewhat amusing (and sad) to look back on these threads and see the all of the first world 'anguish' over lacking a Full Frame pentax camera..
12-21-2013, 11:51 AM - 3 Likes   #37
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What do I think @Urkeldaedalus? I think Ricoh has a Plan. I am exceedingly happy with what I know of my K3 after 3 days (which is of course almost nothing compared to its potential. I think there are patterns emerging that can infer future actions:
  • They seem to introduce major products in February, late April, early summer and late September
    • late September is of course the Holiday introduction - so - I would look for FF there (especially Photokina years) , or secondly CP+
  • They seem to introduce minor products and lenses on a coincident schedule, separated by two or three weeks
  • It appears MUCH of Ricoh's effort the first 2 1/2 years has been dedicated to improving internal systems and manufacturing processes
    • HD Coatings can be viewed as a manufacturing process improvement
    • We can't really know what they done inside the plants, but my bet is significantly less hand-assembly / more machine assembly (which requires the capital investment Hoya refused to make). They have a lot of catching up to do here.
    • If true that might change their warranty philosophy some day (obce the existing stock is sold) because the QC might be better.
  • To some degree their product cycle is a captive of their suppliers' product cycles.
    • Though I don't know anything, it makes sense to me that the real reason for the K5II/s instead of K3 then had to do with waiting for Fujitsu to release the latest Milbeaut processor - and doing the EE work for the K3 while they waited.
    • IIRC the K3 has a different / new Seiko shutter, as well (please correct me if I am wrong about that.
  • I think there is an inherent engineering conflict between small size and IBIS when using a FF sensor.
    • It sounds to me as if the marketing executive infers that the FF will be released when ALL the distinctive Pentax attributes can be met, and not before, and be competitive with (but likely not better than) Nikon's best offering features-wise
      • that is, small(er), IBIS, WR, superior image handling, great ergonomics, plus market-equal minor features.
      • That's a fast ball down the middle to me. Challenge Nikon to hit THIS one.
      • I don't think they give a hoot about Canon. Nikon is their competition
  • They still have distribution issues to resolve in the USA and Europe; I suspect quite a bit of money (Dealer Credit Arrangements require capital allocation) and effort will be expended there on the back of the attention the K3 is giving them.
    • I know this is true in the USA.
    • Look at their booth space for CES - Central Hall, large booth and a real conference room. They're making the effort. I know they're putting effort into CES.
  • I strongly believe Pentax will release an attention-getting FF camera, in the mold of the K3 w/in the APSc space. The key is a great camera, not a Me-Too camera, and a traditional camera, not a "Try it. You'll like it" different technology camera. The when, of course, I haven't a clue and wouldn't say if I did.
    • Whether FF becomes a product line with various price points / feature sets remains a question. I kind of doubt it. That's more like Canon
    • Remember, they don't need 35% of the market. They don't even really want 35% of the market because of the huge infrastructure of support that would require. They want 10% of the market.
      • Q, APSc leading camera LINE, one or maybe two FF cameras (optimized for different uses, not price points) and 645 can control 10% of the market, I believe.
  • Ricoh IMHO does not wish Pentax to be another CaNikon camera. We already have them and they are quite good cameras. Ricoh wants Pentax to be THE alternative camera for those who want a different way to get from Point A to Point B without being so different as to be risky technologically, or subject to consumer whims. I wouldn't be surprised if, in two years, the idea of a thin, pretty, hipster camera that isn't so thin with a lens attached isn't quite so hip any more as it is today. But that's just me - I'm old.
  • Ricoh can afford to be competitive feature-wise at a lower price because they have an want a small market share. They don't need to make us pay for advertising and professional support globally with every camera and lens they sell. If we ask for these things we might get them - and pay for them.
Frankly, I just don't care any more about FF the way I did a year ago. The K3 is a great camera - a better camera than I can really use - and Pentax has started their recovery. They've started. The sense of desperation is gone. There is a glimmer of optimism, a little joy, some emerging business risk-taking in the wind. I, for one, an delighted to see it. Every day, it seems, someone here makes a Post that a camera store has added Pentax back to its product case. Be patient - all things will come to us in time, but there is much work yet to do.

As Mick paraphrased from Phillippians (I think), "You can't always get what you want, well if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need."

Last edited by monochrome; 12-22-2013 at 07:18 AM.
12-21-2013, 11:56 AM   #38
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lensroar, thanks for the translation. Your contribution is much appreciated.
QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
What a firestorm it would cause if Ricoh bought the Konica-Minolta camera patents and factories from Sony (Konica-Minolta still owns the name and other optical patents and products), let Sony keep the brand name and remarketed the A7r and Nex cameras as Ricoh-branded.

Instant FF. Instant Ricoh brand SLR form factor. Instant distribution arrangements for Pentax brand cameras. Instant market share increase.

Instant "Most Members online at PF" record day.
They will still be Sony. I'm afraid I'm a Pentaxian, and don't get this sudden Sony-mania.
But maybe Hasselblad will do it. A "Nebular" or whatever, for only 10 times the price of its Sony counterpart...

QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
A distress buyer never has a detailed strategy at the time of acquisition - there hasn't been time to perform due diligence. That's part of the reason the price was so low - it reflected uncertainty. Having determined the condition Pentax was in, Ricoh created and is actively carrying out its detailed strategy for Pentax.

Trouble is, we don't see most of the steps they're taking because at this time they're not product oriented and secondly, we might not like their detailed strategy for Pentax, and the time horizon over which they intend to carry it out.
They probably saw an opportunity - to use Pentax technologies in non-consumer areas, and to raise their own camera division from a money losing hobby to a serious business. I agree, no way they could possibly have a detailed strategy from the beginning.

For now, we can only glimpse some very general details about their plans - Factory Automation might be what made Pentax worth buying; K-3, the 560mm, the new flashes means they're serious about the camera business too, but they're not attempting suicide to match Sony's furious launches. They're going forward at a steady pace, which right now doesn't seems particularly fast.
The next year will be more revealing, I'm sure of it.

QuoteOriginally posted by liviuperisan Quote
K5IIs is better than K3 + NO FF in the near future = Fuji X or Sony A7r.
The K-3 is one of the products which should make a "full frame" possible; FF cannot exist without APS-C. Pentax cannot exist without APS-C.
Your "equation" is a bit inconsistent, by the way; Fuji X is crop, so what do you really want?

12-21-2013, 12:23 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
They will still be Sony. I'm afraid I'm a Pentaxian, and don't get this sudden Sony-mania.
If a tiny RICOH on the base under the LCD caused what it caused (I'm REALLY amused how small it is now that I've actually seen it) - - like I said - what a firestorm. Of course I was being sarcastic.
12-21-2013, 01:31 PM   #40
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Hm...

Many said the K3 is a great camera, I agreed. But the price of K3 dropped to 1049 from 1299 in 3 months. It is much faster than K5, and K5IIs. Why?

While K3 is great, I think it doesn't provide enough excitement for many K5, K5IIs user to 'upgrade'.

SONY A7 not only shows user that FF can be small, but also affordable.

When will PENTAX come out a FF? I say when APSC profit margin is no longer sustainable/ competitive. Which, seeing all these 'low cost' FF cameras coming out. This day will not be too far away.

At the mean time, a SONY A7 seems like a good camera to use all those FA limited. ..
12-21-2013, 01:33 PM   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by leonsroar Quote
Hello, I just read an interesting interview article from Digital Camera Magazine (in Japanese) ...
Merci leonsroar for the info ... funny thing is that I found it while stumbling through Facebook ... was on the Pentax Forums feed ... Salut, J
12-21-2013, 01:36 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
If a tiny RICOH on the base under the LCD caused what it caused (I'm REALLY amused how small it is now that I've actually seen it) - - like I said - what a firestorm. Of course I was being sarcastic.
Well, I wasn't really responding to you; I'm a bit exasperated by all this hype - that's why that line appears out of place. Sorry.

Regarding your previous post - nicely put, as usual. AFAIK they are working on the European distribution issues, things were being disrupted a bit because of it - but unlike under Hoya, the feeling I'm getting is development, not cost cutting. Things are improving.
12-21-2013, 01:41 PM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by LFLee Quote
At the mean time, a SONY A7 seems like a good camera to use all those FA limited. ..
It probably is. If I were you I probably would. If you want to add an adapter between your lens mount and your camera mount go right ahead.

I won't.

And I just wrote a whole lot of reasons why Pentax doesn't have a FF. YET.
12-21-2013, 01:52 PM - 1 Like   #44
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Yada yada. FF: maybe, perhaps, sometimes... yada yada. And those in the FFaith believe it's just around the corner. Like always.

Nope. I bet if Hoya earlier or Ricoh now was really willing, the mythical FF Pentax would've been out long time ago. But it seems that the camera business - as many other businesses - is struggling and the company is keeping a keen eye on the market trying to figure whether releasing a FF camera would be benefactory or the last nail in the coffin. It seems NONE of the camera companies is doing very well in today's economy.

Having said that, I have to say that I admire the boldness of Sony's moves during the last years. The relatively miniscule NEX family with class leading APS-C sensors, the first FF mirrorless camera (the videocamera, ignoring earlier Leicas) and now the smoking HOT and relatively cheap A7 and A7R! Don't know if they're making any money, but kudos for bringing these models and really stirring the market!

But if FF really is important to somebody here, switch brands already. The FF Pentax just isn't going to happen in any reasonable time scale. Just my gut feeling.
12-21-2013, 01:54 PM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by LFLee Quote
Hm...

Many said the K3 is a great camera, I agreed. But the price of K3 dropped to 1049 from 1299 in 3 months. It is much faster than K5, and K5IIs. Why?

While K3 is great, I think it doesn't provide enough excitement for many K5, K5IIs user to 'upgrade'.

SONY A7 not only shows user that FF can be small, but also affordable.

When will PENTAX come out a FF? I say when APSC profit margin is no longer sustainable/ competitive. Which, seeing all these 'low cost' FF cameras coming out. This day will not be too far away.

At the mean time, a SONY A7 seems like a good camera to use all those FA limited. ..
I think you are reading a little too much into the price drop. The K3, from everything I have seen, has actually sold fairly well. Pentax has often had a little higher introductory price, to capture extra dollars from early adopters. This was a lot worse under Hoya, where (as I recall), the K5 was introduced at 1500 dollars. But, the biggest reason for the price drop is to make it competitive against the D7100, which is very similar in specs, but sells for 1096 right now.

I think APS-C will continue to have the majority of the market, both in profit and in overall sales for some time. That doesn't mean that Pentax won't release a full frame camera, but they have to have a really niche that they can target, particularly when their are low cost full frames like the 6D and D610 out there. I do think 2014 will be interesting, but I also think the K3 is a nicer camera than you are willing to give it credit for.
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