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01-16-2017, 12:21 PM   #91
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
Majority run with zoom lenses than primes in the almost 16 Million images they checked (sample data)
Counting Flickr image data as proof of your assertion only suggests what buyers of Canon and Nikon cameras choose for lenses.

01-16-2017, 12:23 PM   #92
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
FWIW, Fuji also does "non industry standard" FL's, like 23/27/56/60. It's a good way to be memorable, until everybody does it.
Fuji's "odd" focal lengths seems driven by the X-mount and how those lengths relate back to 35mm full frame.
01-16-2017, 12:25 PM   #93
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
We already have Canon and Nikon, and their big cameras and big fast lenses. Do we need another?
I think the more important question is, Is there serious demand for something different? As far as DSLR systems go. That points the direction Pentax needs to consider traveling.

Your question is a very close second in my mind because it is a follow up to the first Q.

QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Pentax is (supposed to be) the alternative full line camera company. Whatever says 'Pentax' has to be different. They have to make the market (of course, that means marketing) . . . )
Who made the claim that Pentax is supposed to be the alternative full line camera company? Alternative in what way? Again, is that way selling? Right now, I'd say not largely... It has piqued interest for sure. But Pentax makes money by selling both Camera bodies AND (more importantly) a lot of lenses and accessories.

On the other hand, it appears, from the data I presented, that most people seem to grab an f/4 zoom and go with it. Maybe an 85mm for portraits. And if they already have these items, what is in it for them to switch to another brand for the same thing just a different mount?

It is a troubling predicament to be in.. and you bring up that point of asking do we need another Canon or Nikon? The traditional market is largely entrenched in them. And there is a much, much, much, much smaller market (it seems) for alternative systems. At least for K mount. 645 seems to be doing well simply because it is cheap, quality, and decent quantity of lenses.

FF K mount was super late on the scene. Both Canon and Nikon had over a decade to evolve their FF catalog while building a deeply entrenched userbase. Pentax had that but lost it.. maybe even gave it up. Now that there is an owner that wants to make something of it, they have the rather difficult task of trying to convince potential buyers that Pentax and K mount is the right system to buy into.

I don't think they make inroads because there is minimal advantage for a user to switch. Usually the switch happens when someone either gets enraged or bored. An appeal to emotions has to be made. Ricoh is too conservative and will continue to very slowly grow the system and try to keep it profitable. But they've shown me over the past number of years now that they don't have the stomach to risk much to potentially gain much. Too much at stake for them financially. And that's understandable. They will roll with the punches and slowly build as the market shows them where they feel is best.

Which gets me back to suggestion I made a couple of days ago... Metabones and similar adapters are probably our best solution for gaining a wealth of modern FF, fast lenses. The newest Metabones designs seem to be really well done.

I wouldn't feel bad about shooting with EF lenses on my K mount camera... not sure how the rest of you guys feel about that. That alone seems to boost Sony when they were getting into the FF mirrorless designs several years ago while Sony built (and continues to build) their own lens lineup.

---------- Post added 01-16-17 at 01:27 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Counting Flickr image data as proof of your assertion only suggests what buyers of Canon and Nikon cameras choose for lenses.
So you're telling me Pentaxians don't use Flickr? We both know that untrue because many hotlink on PF to their flickr accounts.

It is the widest pool of camera data we have currently for the end user. You might not but I consider it valid (even if not end all be all).
01-16-2017, 12:47 PM   #94
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I suspect Ricoh understand the market(s) they are in and considering. We keep talking as though the existing group of users is the future market. The main emerging markets in established countries are younger people and new or returning users, while people in developing countries are the main and probably bigger market there, China being the obvious example, where the growing middle class looks for something to spend their new wealth on. That last group has no cache of old lenses to fall back on, and no allegiance to established brands.

Ricoh has to make the case to those people, not us, at least not to the same extent, regardless of whether we're considering lenses or bodies.

Having said that, I'll strap another one of my personal lens cache on my K-1 (probably the FA*20) and go and take some photos.

01-16-2017, 01:01 PM   #95
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
I think the more important question is, Is there serious demand for something different? As far as DSLR systems go. That points the direction Pentax needs to consider traveling.

Your question is a very close second in my mind because it is a follow up to the first Q.

...

Who made the claim that Pentax is supposed to be the alternative full line camera company? Alternative in what way? Again, is that way selling? Right now, I'd say not largely... It has piqued interest for sure. But Pentax makes money by selling both Camera bodies AND (more importantly) a lot of lenses and accessories.

...

It is the widest pool of camera data we have currently for the end user. You might not but I consider it valid (even if not end all be all).
Another view is that Ricoh see Pentax as a legacy brand for a conservative audience and will keep it going for as long as cameras in their present forms exist, though at a low level. It could be a rather self-contained operation. Genuinely new, high tech developments may happen elsewhere in the Ricoh empire and have little connection to Pentax. This seems to be the case with the Theta, for example, and the Eyefi acquisition.

It is hard for us to form a clear picture because the majority of Pentax business is conducted in Japan so far as one can tell. That is not the case with other companies, at least to the same extent. We don't see much of Pentax outside Japan and we don't know the extent to which Pentax product decisions are driven by local (Japanese) rather than international concerns. The Q, for example, seemed a very Japanese affair from start to finish. It was never a really international stab at the mirrorless market. The West doesn't seem to get small and cute in the way Japan does.

The photography market is in such a state of flux that anything could happen. Technology seems to have plateaued in recent years but all one can say for sure is that massive new technical changes will eventually arrive, like computational photography. It must be very difficult for any camera company to make plans, so I am not surprised that Ricoh are cautious. So far as we know, though, keeping it small, tight and conservative has produced in Pentax a stable business with OK finances, which is more than most are managing.

In my experience, folks on here only agree with any stats from Flickr if they support their argument. Otherwise they denounce them. I wouldn't worry.
01-16-2017, 01:15 PM   #96
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QuoteOriginally posted by RobA_Oz Quote
I suspect Ricoh understand the market(s) they are in and considering. We keep talking as though the existing group of users is the future market. The main emerging markets in established countries are younger people and new or returning users, while people in developing countries are the main and probably bigger market there, China being the obvious example, where the growing middle class looks for something to spend their new wealth on. That last group has no cache of old lenses to fall back on, and no allegiance to established brands.

Ricoh has to make the case to those people, not us, at least not to the same extent, regardless of whether we're considering lenses or bodies.

Having said that, I'll strap another one of my personal lens cache on my K-1 (probably the FA*20) and go and take some photos.
I'm considering the under 40s. With special interest in the 20s and 30s group, because they should be around longer and thus there is potential to sell to them longer. The only caveat is this group generally doesn't have as much expendable money to spend on hobbies such as photography. Which is probably why Ricoh has been trying products such as the K-S1 and K-S2 and the plastic zooms -- To go after the younger, price conscious group.

However, that group enters the market seeing already established systems.. as example, when someone finds out I'm into photography, I have been asked 'Nikon or Canon?' as if they are the only two DSLR manufacturers on the planet. Even more alarming, is when I say I shoot with Pentax I've gotten responses (by younger people) that they had an older family member (dad or uncle) that used them and they thought Pentax was out of business.

This is what happens when zero cares are given to a region. Because, while sales may not be robust in brick and motar camera shops, having that shop presence tells the market as a whole that they exist. Even if they order through their phone with an online shop. That and event sponsoring, commercials, magazine advertisements.. sometimes have to spend money to make money..

Interesting point on sales globally though. Perhaps this entrenchment is why Ricoh has been seemingly ambivalent over North American sales and marketing? China and the east is the big thing now... but they seem to go for established products/systems that are or have been popular in the west. How big is Pentax in China?
01-16-2017, 01:26 PM   #97
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QuoteOriginally posted by RobA_Oz Quote
I suspect Ricoh understand the market(s) they are in and considering. We keep talking as though the existing group of users is the future market. The main emerging markets in established countries are younger people and new or returning users, while people in developing countries are the main and probably bigger market there, China being the obvious example, where the growing middle class looks for something to spend their new wealth on. That last group has no cache of old lenses to fall back on, and no allegiance to established brands.

Ricoh has to make the case to those people, not us, at least not to the same extent, regardless of whether we're considering lenses or bodies.

Having said that, I'll strap another one of my personal lens cache on my K-1 (probably the FA*20) and go and take some photos.
Agree, but the issue with the young is one word only: smartphones. They've come up on those and everything they do and I would guess that this generation will not invest in digital cameras beyond sporadically until digital cameras are in effect rethought and reinvented. And with every passing year the gap grows wider, all over the world and not only in certain regions. It's not a Ricoh thing, though - no outfit seems to be addressing this.
01-16-2017, 01:38 PM - 1 Like   #98
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QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
Another view is that Ricoh see Pentax as a legacy brand for a conservative audience and will keep it going for as long as cameras in their present forms exist, though at a low level. It could be a rather self-contained operation. Genuinely new, high tech developments may happen elsewhere in the Ricoh empire and have little connection to Pentax. This seems to be the case with the Theta, for example, and the Eyefi acquisition.
That's interesting to me. I'd easily agree except for that Ricoh reps when interviewed by PF over the past couple of years have expressed interest in being a top 3 player. I'm not sure they can achieve that appeasing only a 'legacy' audience.

Good point on technology developments on the Ricoh branded side. It seems the smaller and more consumer oriented products do show up branded 'Ricoh.'


QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
It is hard for us to form a clear picture because the majority of Pentax business is conducted in Japan so far as one can tell. That is not the case with other companies, at least to the same extent. We don't see much of Pentax outside Japan and we don't know the extent to which Pentax product decisions are driven by local (Japanese) rather than international concerns. The Q, for example, seemed a very Japanese affair from start to finish. It was never a really international stab at the mirrorless market. The West doesn't seem to get small and cute in the way Japan does.

The photography market is in such a state of flux that anything could happen. Technology seems to have plateaued in recent years but all one can say for sure is that massive new technical changes will eventually arrive, like computational photography. It must be very difficult for any camera company to make plans, so I am not surprised that Ricoh are cautious. So far as we know, though, keeping it small, tight and conservative has produced in Pentax a stable business with OK finances, which is more than most are managing.

In my experience, folks on here only agree with any stats from Flickr if they support their argument. Otherwise they denounce them. I wouldn't worry.
I figured data collected from a 16 million photo collection on a popular western photo site would be a relatively good indicator of the market (at least in NA). This isn't a situation of me coming up with an outcome and searching for results to back it up. But rather looking at the results and coming up with a reason for those results.

Japan, as a whole, is a unique place. They just stopped selling VCRs last year.. other products, long forgotten in the west, seem to continue to exist in Japan. Plus the vending machines.. robots... anime.. totally different culture.

01-16-2017, 01:50 PM   #99
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QuoteOriginally posted by pres589 Quote
Fuji's "odd" focal lengths seems driven by the X-mount and how those lengths relate back to 35mm full frame.
this is entirely it there are a couple of semi oddities - the 27 is a similar FL in FF terms to the 43 , but really it is a 40mm pancake replacement, the pending 50mm f2 WR would make it more a 77ltd replacement but its really about having a WR lineup all f2 (23/35/50/90 - all f2 all WR and rumours of the 18 being redone as a wr f2 next iteration - makes sense now the xrpo is WR, by the end of this year there will be 23 lenses 2 tc and a set of extension tubes. still some holes to fill (135/200/300 primes ) but pretty respectable for a mount that launched in sept 2012 4.5 years ago - the Sony E mount launched in 2010 only has 17, the FE mount in 2013 has 15. lots of duplication

Last edited by eddie1960; 01-16-2017 at 02:01 PM.
01-16-2017, 02:16 PM   #100
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QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
(...)

It is hard for us to form a clear picture because the majority of Pentax business is conducted in Japan so far as one can tell. (...)
I hope it is not the case. According to CIPA and BCN Ranking figures, the number of Pentax cameras sold in Japan decreased by around 40% in 2016 compared to 2015.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/16-pentax-news-rumors/327271-ricoh-financ...ml#post3883586
01-16-2017, 02:29 PM   #101
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mistral75 Quote
I hope it is not the case. According to CIPA and BCN Ranking figures, the number of Pentax cameras sold in Japan decreased by around 40% in 2016 compared to 2015.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/16-pentax-news-rumors/327271-ricoh-financ...ml#post3883586
I could easily be wrong but my impression when this came up a while ago is that more than half, in fact I think more like 60-70 per cent, of Pentax turnover came from Japan. We know they don't sell all that much in the USA and parts of Europe, and that is reflected in their sometimes modest representation in some territories. The sales have to come from somewhere and I would guess Japan. The figure you quote look like extrapolations from a trend - not very reliable, perhaps. Profit/margins are the key.
01-16-2017, 02:42 PM   #102
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mistral75 Quote
I hope it is not the case. According to CIPA and BCN Ranking figures, the number of Pentax cameras sold in Japan decreased by around 40% in 2016 compared to 2015.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/16-pentax-news-rumors/327271-ricoh-financ...ml#post3883586
I have always been skeptical of the BCN figures, Mistral.

According to them, Sony's marketshare actually halved from 2014-2016, and they are nowhere as successful as Canon in the mirrorless area.

BCN is a survey of selected Japanese retailers ... it is a cherry-picked sample. Were Sony stores included, for instance?

CIPA data on the other hand seems to be trustworthy, but where is its breakdown by company?

Last edited by clackers; 01-16-2017 at 02:52 PM.
01-16-2017, 02:43 PM   #103
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"The figure you quote look like extrapolations from a trend": what extrapolation from what trend? The whole year Jan.-Dec. from the eleven months Jan.-Nov.? The margin of error is negligible.

In addition, I choose to estimate the December 2016 figures to use the eleven-month trend (minus 18%), which is more favourable than the November trend (minus 25.3%).

The facts are, (i) the Japanese DSLR market is declining rapidly (and its decrease is accelerating) and (ii) the Pentax share of the Japanese DSLR market went down from 6.7% in 2015 to 4.8% in 2016. The rest is mere calculations.
01-16-2017, 02:50 PM   #104
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mistral75 Quote
"The figure you quote look like extrapolations from a trend": what extrapolation from what trend? The whole year Jan.-Dec. from the eleven months Jan.-Nov.? The margin of error is negligible.

In addition, I choose to estimate the December 2016 figures to use the eleven-month trend (minus 18%), which is more favourable than the November trend (minus 25.3%).

The facts are, (i) the Japanese DSLR market is declining rapidly (and its decrease is accelerating) and (ii) the Pentax share of the Japanese DSLR market went down from 6.7% in 2015 to 4.8% in 2016. The rest is mere calculations.
My apologies, I am not saying your figures are wrong at all, necessarily, but estimating this stuff is incredibly difficult. There are so many variables and of course many camera outfits are coy about their figures whereas CIPA gives broad totals by product categories. For example, where do the figures for the Pentax market share come from? Ricoh must see those as a trade secret. The key, imho, is profitability. If that can be sustained even on reduced unit sales then things are broadly stable. I would guess that is Ricoh's aim. All camera-makers have been seeing declining sales and the markets have been down, we can certainly say that.
01-16-2017, 02:51 PM   #105
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
I am skeptical of the BCN figures.

According to them, Sony's marketshare halved.

BCN is a survey of selected Japanese retailers ... it is a cherry-picked sample. Were Sony stores included, for instance?

CIPA data seems to be trustworthy, but where is its breakdown by company?
According to BCN, Sony's market share halved, yes, but over two years and against more and more competition in the mirrorless market, including from powerful newcomers well known from customers (Canon).

BCN record data from two thirds of the retail outlets in Japan. It's a bit easy to say that the remaining third is where Pentax and Sony sell most of their cameras...
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