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05-25-2014, 06:23 PM   #406
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Canon and Nikon have no post-DSLR strategy.

Pentax appears better suited than they do, being smaller, nimbler, and with a few design quirks that lend themselves to a mirrorless mount transition.

I suspect that was why Ricoh picked Pentax up.
Canon does far more than make consumer cameras.

Nikon, while more 'invested' in the consumer camera market, produces other types of equipment too (ophthalmic and sports optics to name two).

05-25-2014, 07:06 PM   #407
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
Canon does far more than make consumer cameras.

Nikon, while more 'invested' in the consumer camera market, produces other types of equipment too (ophthalmic and sports optics to name two).
Ricoh does far more than make consumer cameras also but it clearly is smaller than Canon. 500th largest revenue company on earth in 2013 according to Forbes.

Nikon has a division (Nikon Precision) that makes photolithographic steppers. Half the integrated circuits ever made were done on a Nikon stepper. A bit more than 1/4 of Nikon's revenue, I think.

Canon, Nikon, Samsung, Ricoh, Sony, Fuji, Olympus, Panasonic. They're all massive conglomerates.
05-25-2014, 07:09 PM   #408
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Just wait a few months, when Fuji comes out with their own MF based on same Sony's sensor. They will not allow 5 years to pass to make 3 new lenses for it.
You are right, in the unlikely event Fuji enters the MF market they will come out with more than three new lenses. But then, they don't have a dozen existing MF lenses. Not even close to a fair comparison.

Still, I agree that Fuji is a significant competitor for Pentax, and they are one to watch.
05-25-2014, 08:02 PM   #409
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote

In the long run, I think Fuji will outrun Ricoh Imaging
I had the impression that Fuji, like the other mirrorless marvels Sony and Olympus, was bleeding money.

Not true?

05-25-2014, 08:54 PM   #410
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
I had the impression that Fuji, like the other mirrorless marvels Sony and Olympus, was bleeding money.

Not true?
Ricoh and Fujifilm are different businesses.

Fujifilm, in order make itself a player in some area important to them in strategic sense, is willing to go through the dry period of heavy investment with negative ROI. Their camera business is an important consumer oriented venture started from scratch. When the film-related market they are dominant player is phased out and industry now totally shifted to digital, Fujifilm needs a solid point of contact with end user market and imaging technology and are investing in digital imaging of their own. Then after some time that initial investment is amortised and company starts making money. It usually takes 5-6 years. So I expect Fuji to make little or nothing in the next 2+ more years. But by then, their system will be complete!

Ricoh, on the other hand, is a portfolio player with varied interests. They are like old carpenters and car mechanics buying around old and interesting stuff, to give it a coat of fresh paint, in order to keep for a while and sell, or keep it but transform into something entirely else. They in general buy companies and reshuffle things inside them, yet add very little extra new investment in that period. So although they made initial purchase, it did not result in any new investment. They lower that initial cost through restructure (which takes time) and only then, after a while, they are willing to add extra through a new investment.

So when Ricoh buys business, it takes at least 3-5 years of "restructure" which is marked with little new investment, until they figure out what can be done with all its parts and assets. Say, (1) Pentax was transformed into (2) Pentax Ricoh Imaging, then into (3) Ricoh Imaging, and now they have a business entity called (4) Theta (not the product) in which parts of the Ricoh Imaging and Network Solutions will go into and develop further in the 2014-2017 period.

In order to show positive balance across the entire company, and appear healthy, they are not willing to splurge any extra money in newly formed entities because any investment worth mentioning would most likely lover the ROE (return on equity, which is tied to profit performance, which means, lowering of cost), and ROE is important to keep stabile in order to make investors happy.

This is important to remember and now recall official's talk about "good things which are coming, but users need to be patient". It is not that new development takes so long, but it takes time for Ricoh to start acting and adding new value apart from the reshuffle.

During the stalemate position for Pentax users, that same time was an all new investment and new opportunity for Fujifilm. They appear to be more active because indeed they are: they started business not as a purchase, but a new venture, and their marketing was calculated in and a necessary cost to make new investment worthwhile.

The drawbacks of Ricoh's approach are quite visible: 3-5 years will pass with nothing significant going on. As we are witnessing it. They are not releasing even the minimum of new lenses, as it would most likely negatively affect very thin profits they achieve in camera business. So anything extra is kept as low as possible, or negative entirely, to appear overall healthy. That is a point they stress in their latest report — no negatives in the entire company! Therefore no new investment as well :-) — if something can be made out of existing values, out of cleaning up corners and looking below desks, and reducing of existing cost in some way, good. But otherwise, nada.

That is why DA Limiteds with new coating were introduced — to appear they do something. But is just repainting of the old — Ricoh carpenter at work doing best what they know best. However, all is very strictly controlled and submitted to the overall good market appearance and users are fed through an eyedropper. A better lens formula for the DA21? Forget about it — that is new. But the K-3 really needed a new AF and new metering — only to be used in all other subsequent cameras from 2014 on, including the 645Z. Got the idea? A spoon of butter is added only if it can be spread on the whole loaf of bread.

Which one you wish to support, Ricoh or Fujifilm? You can allow Ricoh to go for a longer while like that, because they need your time. Badly. But if you are (A) happy with current Pentax cameras and your lenses, then fine; forget about wait and enjoy your equipment. If you are buying new, DA limiteds are especially good investment and are the safest choice in the Pentax lineup. Every other lens range has an uncertain future.

But (B) if you are buying new and are not big fan of Ricoh's unclear development of Pentax lineup, Fujifilm actually deserves more attention and it is good to support their business strategy: aim of their system is much clearer, their marketing is better, message clearer, and will sooner become profitable thanks to your support.

Last edited by Uluru; 05-25-2014 at 10:00 PM.
05-25-2014, 09:04 PM   #411
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
The mirrorless market ascends.
I'm calling you out on this. CIPA only started breaking out MILCs in their reported numbers from all ILCs in 2012 but 2013 sales fell 15.4% vs. 2012 compared to a 14.7% drop for DSLRs. MILCs are 38% of the ILC market in Japan but 19% in the rest of the world (only 10% in the Americas). For a relatively small market there are more competitors than in the DSLR market, and that means a few of them are going to either fish or cut bait in the near future. How many manufacturers depend on MILCs for most of their total revenue across all divisions? None, so making a decision to stop production is easy to do.
05-25-2014, 10:09 PM   #412
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QuoteOriginally posted by rangercarp Quote
You are right, in the unlikely event Fuji enters the MF market they will come out with more than three new lenses. But then, they don't have a dozen existing MF lenses. Not even close to a fair comparison.

Still, I agree that Fuji is a significant competitor for Pentax, and they are one to watch.
Fujifilm is not crazy to go head to head in the FF market with Sony, Nikon and Canon. They'll rather expand their offer in digital imaging market in the MF arena, and challenge the competitors there because they are much easier target.

As a mirrorless MF maker, Fujifilm will be a new player inside the MF, bringing lots of new things and its superior experience in marketing. And they can reuse weather sealing and the EVF and many other bits and pieces from the T1 and other cameras; T1 EVF alone is large enough to be used on the MF camera.

And I bet the starting price of their camera will be lower than Pentax 645Z.
05-26-2014, 01:56 AM   #413
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Uluru, you have an extremely vivid imagination; though I would recommend marking your posts as "science fiction"

Do you have any clue how much (or little) Ricoh invested in Ricoh Imaging?
Are you sure Fujifilm's camera division will become profitable in 2 years? Based on... ?
Do you realize Fujifilm had a head-start? In January 2012 the first X camera and 3 lenses were ready to market; and this happened after a break of 5 years.

That a Pentax camera is "beaten" by rumors, I'm not surprised. You can imagine the rumor to beat a real product in countless ways.

05-26-2014, 04:15 AM   #414
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Fujifilm is not crazy to go head to head in the FF market with Sony, Nikon and Canon.
It is all the same market. The already are full head-to-head with them and nibbling away the user base - especially from the people who are sick of the size and volume of FF DSLRs. The forums are full of people switching, much more than from mFT and Pentax and compact upgraders. They especially dig the grave for FF DSLRs and are a good vision of why Pentax should not go down this dying route.

QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
And I bet the starting price of their camera will be lower than Pentax 645Z.
Would you help us and show two or three examples of Fuji X cameras which significantly undercut the prices of their competition at launch?
Up to now, Fuji has always positioned themselves as luxury items for the well-to-do, not budget at all. That is what Sony does in a desperate attempt to survive.
05-26-2014, 04:40 AM   #415
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QuoteOriginally posted by GoremanX Quote
That expression is beyond stupid. A focal length is what it is. It either suits your purpose or it doesn't. There's nothing "awkward" about it.

A small prime lens with bicycle handles attached to it... that would be awkward.

A zoom lens with a bright pink phallic symbol painted on it... that would be awkward.

A telephoto lens with razor sharp blades around the focus ring... that would be awkward.

But a lens that provides a specific focal length that some photographers can make use of? Not awkward at all. If you have no use for that focal length in your photography endeavors, why are you buying that lens and then bitching about its focal length? It boggles the mind...

But shouldn't a manufacturer (first) provide a specific focal length Field-Of-View that many/most photographers can make use of?

Looks "awkward", at least from a marketing strategy perspective anyway…

Cheers,
R

Last edited by Iberia; 05-26-2014 at 04:44 AM. Reason: rephrased for clarity
05-26-2014, 05:42 AM   #416
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QuoteOriginally posted by RGlasel Quote
I'm calling you out on this. CIPA only started breaking out MILCs in their reported numbers from all ILCs in 2012 but 2013 sales fell 15.4% vs. 2012 compared to a 14.7% drop for DSLRs. MILCs are 38% of the ILC market in Japan but 19% in the rest of the world (only 10% in the Americas). For a relatively small market there are more competitors than in the DSLR market, and that means a few of them are going to either fish or cut bait in the near future. How many manufacturers depend on MILCs for most of their total revenue across all divisions? None, so making a decision to stop production is easy to do.
But mirrorless in 5 years has gone from zero to a lot, taking disposable $$'s from the whole market.

Regardless, the long-term tech favours mirrorless entirely. Not if, but when...
05-26-2014, 05:51 AM   #417
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In other words:
- because of #1, you can claim forever that mirrorless are growing
- it's inevitable, so let's start an early celebration
05-26-2014, 06:13 AM   #418
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
But mirrorless in 5 years has gone from zero to a lot, taking disposable $$'s from the whole market.

Regardless, the long-term tech favours mirrorless entirely. Not if, but when...
New technology always trumps embedded old technology eventually. It did when analog machines replaced labor in the early 20th C. It has when digital replaced analog technology. Often there is a rapid change when capital must be invested to replace amortized Plant and Equipment - there's less incentive to resist change then, less inertia.

By intuition, I believe in their own time Ricoh takes the mirrorless reins and leaves Pentax the mirrorboxes and optical viewfinders. Maybe they build out the GR line with interchangeble lenses, maybe FF GR, maybe something entirely new. Ricoh doesn't have much of a legacy to consider.

5 years is an eternity
05-26-2014, 06:42 AM   #419
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
New technology always trumps embedded old technology eventually
But some old technologies never seem to die. Digital watches haven't seen off analogue, for example. Most "old" technology seems to inhabit the upper echelons of the market like vinyl records and valve amplifiers (and certain rangefinder cameras). That said, you won't find many cathode ray tube televisions being produced nowadays. At my age, I don't think I need worry about not having a mirror box in my camera, though.
05-26-2014, 06:55 AM   #420
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
But some old technologies never seem to die. Digital watches haven't seen off analogue, for example. Most "old" technology seems to inhabit the upper echelons of the market like vinyl records and valve amplifiers (and certain rangefinder cameras). That said, you won't find many cathode ray tube televisions being produced nowadays. At my age, I don't think I need worry about not having a mirror box in my camera, though.
Televisions, no... but the tech still is...
I don't think most oscilloscopes would get an LCD screen (and that would be silly IMO).

This is just a quick example but I'm sure I can find others...
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