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01-19-2014, 05:05 PM   #61
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
My K10D still works and takes fine photographs. I got a K-01 for the novelty and several Q's for the price, but they weren't necessary. If history is a guide I won't buy another dSLR for 5 years. In between I will likely buy one or two $1000 lenses a year, or the equivalent amount in K-mount accessories or Q-mount items.

All those purchases will most likely work with my existing cameras.
You must have a pretty amazing lens collection. That is great.

01-19-2014, 05:11 PM   #62
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Thanks Ron for the terrific write up!!! What i thought was interesting, was the validation of what others have mentioned on PF. That is: the FF market is currently less than 10%, and Pentax's share of that would be much smaller still. At some point, i agree, they will make a FF. As time goes on, the cost of making a Pentax FF gets smaller IMO. There's bound to be cheaper parts and sensors available, plus, more of the planning has been done in advance. For example, its likely that many of the features of the K3 can be recycled at low cost to the FF.
01-19-2014, 05:12 PM   #63
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QuoteOriginally posted by alamo5000 Quote
I think Pentax, if they were smart, they would embrace a lot of their legacy glass. If say Pentax updated and remade a 50mm f1.2 lens (even if it is manual), . . . the company would be far better off.
As it happens, the A 50/1.2 was only recently pulled from the Japanese website.
01-19-2014, 05:20 PM   #64
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QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
As it happens, the A 50/1.2 was only recently pulled from the Japanese website.

Were they making and selling them? What's the back story?

01-19-2014, 05:26 PM   #65
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QuoteOriginally posted by fuent104 Quote
You must have a pretty amazing lens collection. That is great.
Will have. I spent the last five years fooling around with used stuff and film cameras.
01-19-2014, 05:29 PM   #66
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QuoteOriginally posted by alamo5000 Quote
Were they making and selling them? What's the back story?
I suppose they made up a batch, and found enough takers in the Japanese market for it to be worthwhile.
They also offered the FA 20-35, and an FA J zoom.

The Japanese website was quite amazing up to a year or so ago,
with medium-format film cameras (645N, 67) being offered for the "professional" market.

I don't know if you can still find the site on the wayback machine,
or if someone archived it.
01-19-2014, 05:30 PM   #67
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
My K10D still works and takes fine photographs. I got a K-01 for the novelty and several Q's for the price, but they weren't necessary. If history is a guide I won't buy another dSLR for 5 years. In between I will likely buy one or two $1000 lenses a year, or the equivalent amount in K-mount accessories or Q-mount items.

All those purchases will most likely work with my existing cameras.
With the difference than in between the K-10D and K-3 there were several models, issued almost yearly. But it is most likely that in between the K-3 and the next update in 4-5 years there will be no other K-3-like model available. Only K-3, but updated with new functions through the new firmware. Even then, in 5 years, you may ask yourself do you really need that new camera? Then continue using existing K-3 for another 4-5 years.

It is not a bad thing. People who started into photography with digital may see that as shocking, as digital made us believe cameras should be changed as socks or underwear, but it is quite normal from the traditional standpoint.
01-19-2014, 05:30 PM   #68
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QuoteOriginally posted by fuent104 Quote
I see where you are coming from, but I hope you are incorrect. There are still some issues that need to be addressed, such as the crippled mount, and video recording can also be improved expanded (for example, it could include RAW video recording, which a Canon camera that is 5 years old can do).
I think the indication is that the K-3 is meant to be part of a longer product cycle than previously. However, that doesn't preclude the possibility of incremental improvements during the life of that body, and the things you're talking about are incremental. Although they were produced for different reasons, the K-5II and IIs are precedent-setters in the Pentax line of DSLRs. To some extent, the Q10 and Q7 follow the same incremental development path, and it's an interesting precedent in the case of the Q7 with its larger sensor, when potentially applied to the K-3.

01-19-2014, 05:30 PM   #69
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QuoteOriginally posted by fuent104 Quote
I also heard a lot of reasons why they can't be successful, which is loser talk. Maybe they will stay in business, but it is hard to imagine them ever being the leaders of anything. Other than incremental spec-sheet leads. It seems like they act primarily out of fear. Amidst the sea of different, and arguably innovative photography products that have come out in the last 5 years, Almost none of them have had the Pentax name. The ones that have been Pentax products, such as the Q, have been very, very poorly supported.
I'd love to read your support for these assertions, paragraph by paragraph. Where would you have Pentax be a leader? (Yes, they openly admit they missed an opportunity in mirrorless legacy styled bodies). In what way has Q not been supported?

Please understand, I'm not contradicting - I just want to know in more detail what you think they should be doing.
01-19-2014, 05:47 PM   #70
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QuoteOriginally posted by philbaum Quote
Thanks Ron for the terrific write up!!! What i thought was interesting, was the validation of what others have mentioned on PF. That is: the FF market is currently less than 10%, and Pentax's share of that would be much smaller still. At some point, i agree, they will make a FF. As time goes on, the cost of making a Pentax FF gets smaller IMO. There's bound to be cheaper parts and sensors available, plus, more of the planning has been done in advance. For example, its likely that many of the features of the K3 can be recycled at low cost to the FF.

Well I think this is very much an option as has been done by Pentax during the Hoya time by making the 645D with all the goods from the K-7. So starting from the K-3 you can put all the electronics in a new Full Frame camera model and also an updated 645D model. But for both off those camera's you first need access to a (new) sensor and second off all an economic outlook that you can do that and make a profit. The 645D is a little sluggish on the PRIME II engine and I guess that if a 645Dii gets a 60 megapixel sensor it will still be a little sluggish on the PRIME III engine. I don't see Pentax coming out with camera's and advanced electronics and multiple processors as in topsegment camera's from CaNikon, because those electronics are very expensive.
01-19-2014, 07:07 PM   #71
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Excellent report. Very informative. Thank you for posting.
01-19-2014, 07:46 PM   #72
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
What about 150-450 FF compatible? There is one already made. But not publicised ... yet.
Since nobody else picked up on this, I'll bite: Can you tell us more about that lens? I really would be interested in some more details about it.
01-19-2014, 09:04 PM   #73
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QuoteOriginally posted by RobA_Oz Quote
I think the indication is that the K-3 is meant to be part of a longer product cycle than previously. However, that doesn't preclude the possibility of incremental improvements during the life of that body, and the things you're talking about are incremental. Although they were produced for different reasons, the K-5II and IIs are precedent-setters in the Pentax line of DSLRs. To some extent, the Q10 and Q7 follow the same incremental development path, and it's an interesting precedent in the case of the Q7 with its larger sensor, when potentially applied to the K-3.
I see, and that is an interesting point about the Q7.
01-19-2014, 09:18 PM   #74
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I'd love to read your support for these assertions, paragraph by paragraph. Where would you have Pentax be a leader? (Yes, they openly admit they missed an opportunity in mirrorless legacy styled bodies). In what way has Q not been supported? Please understand, I'm not contradicting - I just want to know in more detail what you think they should be doing.
I understand. Here are some areas in which Pentax products do not lead among DSLR manufacturers: lens performance, lens variety, auto focus, and video recording.

I agree with you about mirrorless segment. Fuji is doing some wonderful things (what if they thought like the Ricoh people - "we don't have much of the APS-C market, so we shouldn't launch a product"...), Olympus is doing some great things...like offering fast lenses, and even better in-body stabilization. Sony has really got something with the A7. Basically, when a person thinks about exciting photography products over the last few years, I don't think they're thinking Pentax. Which isn't to say there aren't great Pentax products...because there are. I think the K500 is most likely the best entry level DSLR on the planet, for example.

I hate the Q lens selection, and I'm not alone. Toy lenses and slow zooms are not why I bought my Q. I've written about this before, but I feel like I was hoodwinked into buying what I thought was going to be a serious photographic system with a small sensor, i.e. one with lenses that were optimized to get the best image possible out of the small sensor. That is almost word-for-word what the marketing literature about the Q said the lenses were going to be designed to do. I did not make that up. As of now we have exactly 2 lenses (by my count) than enable a person to shoot images that are not diffraction limited. That, in my opinion, counts as poor support.
01-19-2014, 09:52 PM   #75
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QuoteOriginally posted by fuent104 Quote
hate the Q lens selection, and I'm not alone. Toy lenses and slow zooms are not why I bought my Q. I've written about this before, but I feel like I was hoodwinked into buying what I thought was going to be a serious photographic system with a small sensor, i.e. one with lenses that were optimized to get the best image possible out of the small sensor. That is almost word-for-word what the marketing literature about the Q said the lenses were going to be designed to do. I did not make that up. As of now we have exactly 2 lenses (by my count) than enable a person to shoot images that are not diffraction limited. That, in my opinion, counts as poor support.
I'll real quickly respond before bed - in our conversation with Jim Malcolm last spring the group of Q users from PF kept referring to "fun" and Jim kept correcting us to "capable". We finally said, aside from the 01, which lens? This is a case where, at least I think, the reception in the Japanese market changed the intended direction of product development toward fun. That doesn't change a thing you write, and I agree with you.

My core belief remains that Ricoh's biggest problem is the order in which they fix things. There are just too many things going on at Pentax and too many good things to do and bad things to fix, many of which we don't see (manufacturing processes, internal business processes, distribution stuff, etc.). I also firmly believe Ricoh's unexpected financial restructuring after buying IKON Office Systems in the US really messed up their capital investment plans for Pentax. I know capital expenditures and new personnel hires were completely locked down from early summer 2011 through spring 2013. Things should loosen up after March and we may see an acceleration then, but everything has been internally financed by Pentax organic cash flow up until the HD coatings evaporators investment.

Also, most of the people are stiill Pentax people, who are conservative and risk averse. It might take Ricoh a longer time to change the culture than we would like if the supply of experienced people to replace them is constrained.

OTOH, K3 is encouraging. I got out to shoot Bald Eagles on the Mississippi today (would have been better with a 600mm lens) and the tracking AF was pretty good, I thought (then again, my experience is Pentax, not Nikon or Canon).
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