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12-26-2008, 05:56 AM   #61
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeffkrol Quote
It ALWAYS hinges on market share, no matter how it's portrayed.
I love Pentax backward compatibility but it is partially hindering them.
The newer SD lenses w/ no shaft drive is just the beginning of an unfortunate change.
Just eliminating those silly "A" contacts would save a few pennies..
Shrinking the flange to sensor distance would be another benefit but would kill all past lenses.
Pentax only choice would be to run to co-current lines like nikon did in part.

Rock and a hard place.
Not sure if Minolta/Sony has a wider mount but Pentax has stated that in camera AS is not possible w/ the current size of the lensmount.
I have the utmost respect for your thoughts (they're always sensible and well-reasoned), but we'll have to agree to disagree on this one. I'm pretty sure bad management and a lack of strong marketing is much more to blame for Pentax's not-so-ideal market position than their insistence on keeping the K-mount backwards compatible.

Of course, I'm no engineering genius and cannot make a case for Pentax's choice to move away from screw-driven AF on some of their newer lenses, but what I am happy about is that my small collection of M and screwmount lenses can still be used on new Pentax DSLRs. Would that hurt Pentax's bottom line since I wouldn't be buying new lenses? I doubt it. I'm still saving up for my first Limited lens as I speak. The key here is that Pentax still manages to make interesting lenses so there's still a penchant to buy new lenses (where camera companies make the most profit).

Where Pentax falls flat still is propagation of the brand name to the newer generation of photographers (of which I'm supposed to be part of, but I read history a lot, so no need to sell the name to me). The Pentax lenses are fine, and the related technologies are fine also (save for the 16-50 lemons and the long agonizing wait for the 60-250). The bottleneck in market share still lies on marketing, really. The K-m has a chance to rein in new users (low price - well, maybe lower it a bit more) and generate decent profit (reused components), but I'm not at all sure about how it's being marketed and advertised. Sadly, where the K-ms are being assembled, it's a dead spot for Pentax marketing and advertising.

12-26-2008, 06:04 AM   #62
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QuoteOriginally posted by zntgrg Quote
Canon was quite a minor player in the FD mount days...it was the radical change of the EOS mount to put them where they are now...but they could fail too.

Anyway why change the mount since is (frankly) the only part of Pentax products that works REALLY well?
The shift from manual focus to AF (along with body-controlled aperture) was a really big thing. With the K-mount able to include those new technologies (even in-lens AF) still, I have to question what big technological shift can be achieved from abandoning the K-mount altogether.

I have to comment that the sensor works well, too, and the ergonomics.
12-26-2008, 09:23 AM   #63
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I would tend to suggest that the better lenses are also in FINE working order.
12-26-2008, 10:17 AM   #64
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In fact the K-mount can IMHO even accommodate the shift to a completely electronic mount (including electronically-controlled aperture). This can be done while keeping the compatibility with old lenses, sort of like the new SDM-only lenses that can AF only on newer cameras.
And I can't think of a bigger change, that would make a new mount absolutely required.

12-26-2008, 11:00 AM   #65
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QuoteOriginally posted by zntgrg Quote
Canon was quite a minor player in the FD mount days...it was the radical change of the EOS mount to put them where they are now...but they could fail too.

Anyway why change the mount since is (frankly) the only part of Pentax products that works REALLY well?
It's a little debatable just how minor the FD mount really was, (certainly Nikon had market dominance in most pro applications,) but the EOS mount was really necessitated by the engineering issues of the time: you just couldn't get an AF screw in the FD mount and it wasn't very good for electrical contacts, either. (Also the 'New-FD' mount was a little more expensive to produce than many would have liked.) I certainly didn't run right out and buy all new EOS stuff when AF was in its infancy, ...rather a lot of Canon shooters simply felt abandoned, and that was about the end of their company getting any more sales from me, certainly. On balance it worked out, and had to happen, sooner or later, but it took a long time, and I don't think a company with smaller marketshare wants to put their their loyalists in the wind just on hope of making a few more sales, unless there's an *utterly* compelling engineering roadblock.

Pentax has no such worries, and they'd be fools to give up the backward compatibility: this is a major 'gateway' into a brand that's all about beating the cost-performance ratio of other brands.

"Forcing" people to buy new lenses is no way to sell new lenses: more likely it is to dissuade people from your brand in the first place. Making people *want* the new lenses is how to sell the new lenses.

Last edited by Ratmagiclady; 12-26-2008 at 11:17 AM.
12-26-2008, 11:23 AM   #66
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And they succeed in making us want new lenses, don't they?
(waiting for the 15mm, btw)
12-26-2008, 01:44 PM   #67
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
And they succeed in making us want new lenses, don't they?
(waiting for the 15mm, btw)
My point exactly. In a word, FA Limiteds.
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