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09-19-2008, 07:48 PM   #1
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Hoya Closing Japan Pentax Factory - The end of the FA Limiteds?

Not sure if this has been posted anyway, didn't see anything on here but according to Bloomberg....

Hoya Will Move Digital-Camera Output to Philippines, Vietnam

By Junko Hayashi and Pavel Alpeyev

Sept. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Hoya Corp., Japan's largest maker of optical glass, will stop producing digital cameras in Japan and move output to its factories in Vietnam and the Philippines by March 31 to improve competitiveness.

Hoya will offer early retirement to 250 of its employees at its factory in Mashiko, Tochigi prefecture, spokeswoman Akiko Maeyama said by phone today, without specifying the total number of workers. The relocation will cost Tokyo-based Hoya ``several billion yen,'' Maeyama said, confirming a Nikkei newspaper report.

The company acquired the factory, which also produces medical equipment, as part of its purchase of camera maker Pentax Corp. last year, the Nikkei said.

Hoya fell 2.7 percent to 1,966 yen as of 10:33 a.m. on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. The benchmark Nikkei 225 Stock Average dropped 2.8 percent.

To contact the reporter on this story: Pavel Alpeyev in Tokyo at palpeyev@bloomberg.net.



Could this mark then end of our beloved limiteds, or perhaps just the end of their production in Japan?

I apologize if this has been posted elsewhere, I did complete a search to see beforehand.

09-19-2008, 07:52 PM   #2
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From what I understand, this factory only made the P&S cameras- the Optio line.
09-19-2008, 08:05 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by loafer Quote
...Could this mark then end of our beloved limiteds, or perhaps just the end of their production in Japan?
I believe that all of the FA limited are already considered to be "historic" products:
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09-19-2008, 08:07 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I believe that all of the FA limited are already considered to be "historic" products:
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so is the DA 16-45 :S and DA14

09-19-2008, 08:32 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by k100d Quote
so is the DA 16-45 :S and DA14
That's surprising. Does Pentax only make a set number of lenses then retire the product?
09-19-2008, 09:12 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by alohadave Quote
That's surprising. Does Pentax only make a set number of lenses then retire the product?
I think that they do several production runs until sales start to taper off. When that happens they probably do a final production run to fill the warehouses and mothball the tooling. From all reports the FA 50/1.4 has been out of active production for some time, but is still in the warehouse and generally available new at retail.

This not unusual. Based on the product postings at Tamron's Web site the last time I looked, they still have NOS of certain Adaptall-2 lenses and mounts (All Adaptall-2 production was stopped in 2006). (See: Tamron Lenses; Award Winning Conventional, Digital Lenses)


Steve

Last edited by stevebrot; 09-19-2008 at 09:18 PM.
09-19-2008, 10:43 PM   #7
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Wow, I should get those FA Limiteds, then, before stocks dry up.
09-20-2008, 12:27 AM   #8
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I wonder how many Optio factories are out there?! now i understand why digicam are always in net loss!

Pentax reminds me of many italian corporations...slow and fat dinosaurs...Hope Hoya can do the evolution.

09-20-2008, 02:20 AM   #9
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There will be no more Japanese made Pentax lenses

QuoteOriginally posted by clawhammer Quote
From what I understand, this factory only made the P&S cameras- the Optio line.
Not correct, the factory is for the highest grade Pentax products which include large and medium format SLRs, SLR lenses and accessories.

There are four more original Japanese news articles who have reported all the details in depth. I have summarised and translated all of them in my latest article below:-

RiceHigh's Pentax Blog: Hoya Closing Pentax Production Facilities in Japan

So, Pentax lenses that Made In Japan are now just a history of the past. Of course, there will be no more MIJ FA Limiteds. Sad.

The fortunate thing is that I am still keeping many of those near-perfect Japan made Pentax optics with excellent quality - but now mine are all historical collections anyway!
09-20-2008, 02:35 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by RiceHigh Quote
Not correct, the factory is for the highest grade Pentax products which include large and medium format SLRs, SLR lenses and accessories.

There are four more original Japanese news articles who have reported all the details in depth. I have summarised and translated all of them in my latest article below:-

RiceHigh's Pentax Blog: Hoya Closing Pentax Production Facilities in Japan

So, Pentax lenses that Made In Japan are now just a history of the past. Of course, there will be no more MIJ FA Limiteds. Sad.

The fortunate thing is that I am still keeping many of those near-perfect Japan made Pentax optics with excellent quality - but now mine are all historical collections anyway!
OH NO! Nobody cares!

The process is mostly automatic nowadays, the workers just have to glue and spit-shine the glass. The lenses will still be designed in Japan.

Didn't you get why Pentax products are generally cheaper than Canon/Nikon/whoever? Because they have factories in the Philippines and Vietnam; not in Japan, where wages are higher.
09-20-2008, 03:01 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by RiceHigh Quote
I have summarised and translated all of them....
I wasn't aware that you are a Japanese speaker. That's interesting.
09-20-2008, 03:11 AM   #12
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Cheaper??

QuoteOriginally posted by ftpaddict Quote
OH NO! Nobody cares!

The process is mostly automatic nowadays, the workers just have to glue and spit-shine the glass. The lenses will still be designed in Japan.

Didn't you get why Pentax products are generally cheaper than Canon/Nikon/whoever? Because they have factories in the Philippines and Vietnam; not in Japan, where wages are higher.
A K-m kit with all plastic DA L 18-55 sold at 499 Euros?

Or, the new DA* 60-250/4 that sold at 1299 Euros??

Not even to mention the older DA* 300/4 which is made in Vietname but almost 30% more expensive than the EF 300/4 L IS that is Made In Japan!

Explanations? (I will explain why later and in the meantime you guess first! ;-))
09-20-2008, 03:13 AM   #13
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Nope.

QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
I wasn't aware that you are a Japanese speaker. That's interesting.
I'm an English speaker! ;-D
09-20-2008, 03:18 AM   #14
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There is no free lunch on this planet!

QuoteOriginally posted by ftpaddict Quote
OH NO! Nobody cares!

The process is mostly automatic nowadays, the workers just have to glue and spit-shine the glass. The lenses will still be designed in Japan.
Really? So, why not make a fully automatic line with all robots to make the cameras and lenses?

p.s. I worked in factories for making Japanese electronic goods decades ago including the dead AIWA and Sega products.

QuoteQuote:
Because they have factories in the Philippines and Vietnam; not in Japan, where wages are higher.
Higher wages usually mean higher quality labours and in return more quality products. There is no free lunch in this planet!

p.s. Canon and Nikon's top of the line products are still all made in Japan, which include L lenses, top model DSLR bodies and flashes including the Nikon D3. JUST think about it!
09-20-2008, 03:21 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by RiceHigh Quote
Higher wages usually mean higher quality labours and in return more quality products. There is no free lunch in this planet!

Just ask Apple.
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