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07-23-2017, 02:08 PM   #1321
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dr_who Quote
looking at the size, I thought it was for the 645z
Yeah, it's a Star lens, not a Limited.



07-23-2017, 04:07 PM   #1322
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I just hope they can sell enough of them to make a go of it. So far, all the DFAs apart from the 28-105 are way out of my price range, and the DFA 28-105 is too expensive (and too good optically) to be called a kit lens. My worry is Pentax putting all this money into expensive glass, they may not be able to sell. The 150-450 should be right up my alley. I would pay $1500 as opposed to 1k for 150-600 Sigma or Tamron,

At Henry's my store of choice

DFA 150-450 - 2749, over 3k with tax. 4k with a KP.

Tamron 150-600 $1,199 plus Nikon D3400 $519 or combined $1718, 2k with Tax.

This is a high risk game Pentax is playing, betting that they can cash in on the high end sales, while providing limited options for the rest of us. SO far so good, but let's hope it continues that way. They have cut out a lot of the market, especially in full frame. I guess the strategy is to continue to push APS-c for the less serious and FF for the big spenders. Which makes a lot more sense than it sounds like. If you buy a $1000 camera you buy $1000 lenses. If you buy a $3000 (CAD) camera you buy $3000 lenses, right?

Others have ridiculed Pentax users for buying $2500 K-1 and sticking a $50 piece of glass on the front. I'm guessing that's what Pentax is reacting to. They want something for the big spenders. I just want to shoot and what I have is just fine. Hence this is way more of a gamble for them. They need more market share to maintain sales of the new generation glass, they need to recruit more folks with more money than their current user base. Us old dudes can't really help out. Hell for many of us we can't even comprehend buying A K-1 and the DFAs, already over 10k and counting. If Pentax is going to be successful with the DFAs, it won't be because of us. But then in 20 years we'll all be dead and what we want won't matter.

To me this is more about product positioning in the market place, more than the needs of more than a few customers. The availability of high end glass makes your cheaper glass look like a better deal. The only thing on my horizon would be the 55-300 PLM. I want to experience that quiet operation and fast focus speed, but from an focal length and aperture perspective, I don't need the lens.

If everyone was like me the lens Pentax would be coming out with would be the 200mm ƒ4 macro. Somehow I guess they'll do better with the 50 1.4.
Norm, I agree with everything you wrote. I hope the other lenses that have been loosely alluded to (read: wider FF primes) also show up.

This should be an interesting ride.
07-23-2017, 04:54 PM   #1323
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
To me this is more about product positioning in the market place, more than the needs of more than a few customers. The availability of high end glass makes your cheaper glass look like a better deal. The only thing on my horizon would be the 55-300 PLM. I want to experience that quiet operation and fast focus speed, but from an focal length and aperture perspective, I don't need the lens.

If everyone was like me the lens Pentax would be coming out with would be the 200mm ƒ4 macro. Somehow I guess they'll do better with the 50 1.4.
The new D FA* 50mm and 85mm lenses are indicative of exactly your statement, positioning. And in a declining market that makes the decision all the more important to position FF as the high end performance product where the margins are. The APS-C market is probably going to be more for the hobbyists and the FF for the professionals. And isn't that what the February interview brought out? They said so in so many words that FF is for the high end performance. That is their stated goal and they really are following though on that. One high quality lens at a time, and the K1 will sell for "a few more years" before they upgrade it.

Believe it or not, the APS-C lenses are probably now the "legacy" glass!!! As legacy, they can keep pumping those out for the foreseeable future until APS-C needs a radical change (like curved sensors or the decision to jump to mirrorless). Those costs are sunk and just like the old Limiteds, will keep producing those APS-C lenses until they don't sell anymore. That is why they are perfectly happy to come out with a K3II successor, they don't "have" to come out with anymore lenses.

Whether they are actually successful at this strategy remains to be seen (you are right, it is a big risk but they have no choice other than just sell the company to someone else). The high end demands better continuous auto focus, video/multimedia, flash sync speeds, depending on which type of professional you talk to. Not to mention the range of glass needed for a professional to feeI/perceive confident to invest in Pentax FF. Pentax FF will have to carve out a niche amongst the pros and hopefully the lens offerings will reflect the depth of reflection and thought that they may (or may not) have put into this problem. This confidence problem is the real problem with this strategy!!! If they don't become MORE aggressive with FF as a Platform for various kinds of professionals, then they will NOT buy into it (but if RI can muscle-up to it, then they will buy from various portions of the pro spectrum). Kind of like computer systems, you need confidence that is not misplaced in order to invest a few hundred thousand $$$ as a solution to a business problem!

Thank you all for this discussion. I actually think I understand the decisions Ricoh has been making and can make more informed decisions of my own. As an APS-C user, I may have the best of both worlds. Because of K-mount, I can get a dedicated APS-C lens, older FF, newer FF, or even a third party lens of either type (although I would rather buy a Pentax lens to support their efforts to try to be successful).
07-23-2017, 06:34 PM - 1 Like   #1324
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QuoteOriginally posted by wkraus Quote
... I hope not!
Many of us old guys started with Pentax back when they brought out the Spotmatic, the first camera with an internal linked light meter. That was Pentax's hey day. I started with Pentax in 67, that's 50 years ago. We can't hang on forever....

Seriously, if Pentax is going forward in the future, they need to forget us old timers and build some relationships with younger folks. They've given me a lifetime of good cameras that I've always enjoyed using. I hope the younger people will be able to say the same when they get to my age.

07-23-2017, 07:41 PM   #1325
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Many of us old guys started with Pentax back when they brought out the Spotmatic, the first camera with an internal linked light meter. That was Pentax's hey day. I started with Pentax in 67, that's 50 years ago. We can't hang on forever....

Seriously, if Pentax is going forward in the future, they need to forget us old timers and build some relationships with younger folks. They've given me a lifetime of good cameras that I've always enjoyed using. I hope the younger people will be able to say the same when they get to my age.

Indeed. Pentax can't remain the "country club" for a select age group, they need to continue to reach out to further age groups. And in that different budgets. With the D-FA 28-105 they made a more price conscious lens but it still retains a nice level of performance. There is a 70-300-ish lens on the roadmap that I suspect will be in the same vein of cheap but nice variable aperture lens. They also, imo, need a similar wide angle zoom something like that 18-35mm we keep talking about.

Why? Well it is expensive to buy the K-1, the 15-30, 24-70, 150-450 etc all together. I think many people buy the K-1 and the 'kit' lens then slowly work to buy the more premium lenses over time... it isn't an instant lump sum purchase.

Having the 'kit' style lenses gives photogs a means to get started while working into the system deeper. Maybe they can only afford one 'premium' fast lens but still require a larger focal range covered. This way the money stays with Ricoh Imaging instead of 3rd parties...

Not that I'm expecting a kit style 18-35mm anytime soon in K mount (if ever). Only that I could see its value in the lineup. Store purchasable D-FAs are currently pretty shallow in number at the moment. They really do need to both deepen and broaden the lineup imo.
07-23-2017, 11:16 PM   #1326
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Many of us old guys started with Pentax back when they brought out the Spotmatic, the first camera with an internal linked light meter. That was Pentax's hey day. I started with Pentax in 67, that's 50 years ago. We can't hang on forever....

Seriously, if Pentax is going forward in the future, they need to forget us old timers and build some relationships with younger folks. They've given me a lifetime of good cameras that I've always enjoyed using. I hope the younger people will be able to say the same when they get to my age.
I was reacting to the first part of the quote. I agree with you; nevertheless I hope I'm still here 20 years from now (even though I started with an SP 500).
07-24-2017, 12:32 AM   #1327
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To be honest I don't see pro's coming to Pentax in any large numbers. I think some of these lenses will be far to expensive for the user group.
07-24-2017, 12:40 AM   #1328
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
I think some of these lenses will be far to expensive for the user group.
Maybe the existing one - but there are a lot of people out there with money to burn who are not pros - and probably spend more on equipment that pros do - if you can get the cachet to attract them.Pentax did have that once - decades ago - and (big) if they can get a buzz going around the name again, who knows what they might sell?


Last edited by ffking; 07-24-2017 at 02:38 AM.
07-24-2017, 01:41 AM   #1329
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QuoteOriginally posted by goldenarrow Quote
The new D FA* 50mm and 85mm lenses are indicative of exactly your statement, positioning. And in a declining market that makes the decision all the more important to position FF as the high end performance product where the margins are. The APS-C market is probably going to be more for the hobbyists and the FF for the professionals. And isn't that what the February interview brought out? They said so in so many words that FF is for the high end performance. That is their stated goal and they really are following though on that. One high quality lens at a time, and the K1 will sell for "a few more years" before they upgrade it.

Believe it or not, the APS-C lenses are probably now the "legacy" glass!!! As legacy, they can keep pumping those out for the foreseeable future until APS-C needs a radical change (like curved sensors or the decision to jump to mirrorless). Those costs are sunk and just like the old Limiteds, will keep producing those APS-C lenses until they don't sell anymore. That is why they are perfectly happy to come out with a K3II successor, they don't "have" to come out with anymore lenses.

Whether they are actually successful at this strategy remains to be seen (you are right, it is a big risk but they have no choice other than just sell the company to someone else). The high end demands better continuous auto focus, video/multimedia, flash sync speeds, depending on which type of professional you talk to. Not to mention the range of glass needed for a professional to feeI/perceive confident to invest in Pentax FF. Pentax FF will have to carve out a niche amongst the pros and hopefully the lens offerings will reflect the depth of reflection and thought that they may (or may not) have put into this problem. This confidence problem is the real problem with this strategy!!! If they don't become MORE aggressive with FF as a Platform for various kinds of professionals, then they will NOT buy into it (but if RI can muscle-up to it, then they will buy from various portions of the pro spectrum). Kind of like computer systems, you need confidence that is not misplaced in order to invest a few hundred thousand $$$ as a solution to a business problem!

Thank you all for this discussion. I actually think I understand the decisions Ricoh has been making and can make more informed decisions of my own. As an APS-C user, I may have the best of both worlds. Because of K-mount, I can get a dedicated APS-C lens, older FF, newer FF, or even a third party lens of either type (although I would rather buy a Pentax lens to support their efforts to try to be successful).
FF may be where the high margins are but it is still a minority interest. The majority don't have that kind of money to spend and still purchase less costly equipment which means smaller sensors. Neglecting APS-C is adding more risk to the risks already. It is far easier to persuade people to trade up within a brand than to attract them to the brand in the first place, so I hope Pentax do not make the mistake of thinking their APS-C range is done and dusted beyond introducing a new body every now and then to help sell all those lenses (which, as you say, are increasingly legacy ones). Otherwise there is quite a chance that your potential future customers will first purchase a Canon or Nikon, probably mirrorless within a few years, then trade up to another, more high-end Canon or Nikon. This is, in fact, part of Canon's own strategy to judge from how they have placed their M series cameras and the own-brand adapter which goes with them.

I suspect chasing these elusive "pros" may be a mistake. My impression is that they rarely change brands and may also rely on industrial strength service agreements which Pentax do not offer.

Imho, there's no substitute for offering very good modern equipment at all levels of the market you play in. It could be argued that Canon and Nikon's relative neglect of APS-C has helped Fuji, Sony and co get in through the door and now they are spreading through the house.
07-24-2017, 02:06 AM - 2 Likes   #1330
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QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
FF may be where the high margins are but it is still a minority interest.
But still VERY needed!

QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
Neglecting APS-C is adding more risk to the risks already.
Who said they do that? Do you know more then we in Ricoh do?

QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
I suspect chasing these elusive "pros" may be a mistake.
And why is that? Please do tell....

QuoteOriginally posted by mecrox Quote
My impression is that they rarely change brands and may also rely on industrial strength service agreements which Pentax do not offer.
Dont you think Pentax (Ricoh) are working on those areas? Its not done over the night to turn a ship that was almost on the bottom...
07-24-2017, 02:25 AM   #1331
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
If everyone was like me the lens Pentax would be coming out with would be the 200mm ƒ4 macro. Somehow I guess they'll do better with the 50 1.4.
I also find the 50/1.4 to be rather odd choice for a company that needs a more complete FF lens line-up. After all there is 50mm (and a 43mm) in the line-up (and lots on the used marked). Whats missing is a wide angle wider than the 31 Limited. A 24mm lens should be first priority IMO. Now this very useful focal length, particularly popular among landscape photographers, is only covered by two very large zoom lenses.....

---------- Post added 07-24-17 at 11:27 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by goldenarrow Quote
The new D FA* 50mm and 85mm lenses are indicative of exactly your statement, positioning. And in a declining market that makes the decision all the more important to position FF as the high end performance product where the margins are. The APS-C market is probably going to be more for the hobbyists and the FF for the professionals.

In my opinion the 50mm and the 85mm are even more useful for the APS format.....
07-24-2017, 03:27 AM   #1332
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FF is always a negligible niche, better ignored, if you ask the users of cropped-only systems

The D FA* 50mm being the first D FA prime is an odd choice, and it isn't. IMO they're not filling the gaps between the existing, film-era lenses; instead, they're forming a new prime lens line from scratch.
I would've been happier to see the ultra wide first (say, this spring), though.
07-24-2017, 04:36 AM   #1333
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50mm is the standard lens for a FF system. I think I would prefer the FA 43mm ltd or the old FA 50 1.4. To a big chunky 1.4 50 though.
07-24-2017, 05:46 AM   #1334
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07-24-2017, 05:49 AM   #1335
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The size absolutely amazes me. That's bigger and heavier than an ME with a 50 on it.

Exactly what need is being filled by such a big lens? IS this some kind of "big lens" fad that will blow over in a few years?
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