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02-03-2009, 11:01 PM   #1
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Pentax- becoming the great unknown

I've had Pentax SLR's and DSLR's since 1968 when I bought my first SLR...a 1968 Pentax S1a.

I've bought plenty of Pentax SLR's and about a year ago I bought a new Pentax K10D, with the Pentax 16-45, 55-300, 50 f1.4, 360 Flash, battery grip, etc.

I'm thinking of getting a KM for a second body.

There I've established my credentials...I'm a Pentaxian...but it only seems that old, long term owners like me even know about Pentax.

Why...oh why does Pentax not advertise their tremendous equipment ???

I know, I know...Canon has big bucks, but they also have smart marketing. They're getting into the youth market...to wit..the ads that feature the famous girl singer who no doubt appeals to the youth market. The ads make me wince, but Canon is doing a fine job of hooking the young while they're young.

I wonder how much of the youth market even know about Pentax....probably not many.

It used to be different, back in the '60's and '70's Pentax was one of the big players...Iwas 19 when I bought my first SLR...a Pentax.

02-03-2009, 11:43 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
I've had Pentax SLR's and DSLR's since 1968 when I bought my first SLR...a 1968 Pentax S1a.

I've bought plenty of Pentax SLR's and about a year ago I bought a new Pentax K10D, with the Pentax 16-45, 55-300, 50 f1.4, 360 Flash, battery grip, etc.

I'm thinking of getting a KM for a second body.

There I've established my credentials...I'm a Pentaxian...but it only seems that old, long term owners like me even know about Pentax.

Why...oh why does Pentax not advertise their tremendous equipment ???

I know, I know...Canon has big bucks, but they also have smart marketing. They're getting into the youth market...to wit..the ads that feature the famous girl singer who no doubt appeals to the youth market. The ads make me wince, but Canon is doing a fine job of hooking the young while they're young.

I wonder how much of the youth market even know about Pentax....probably not many.

It used to be different, back in the '60's and '70's Pentax was one of the big players...Iwas 19 when I bought my first SLR...a Pentax.
well once you had a Pentax you will always have one or miss one. BUT!
I live in NYC surrounded by the best camera stores in the world and even here had to wait for the K20D to be on stock . so ... if you will not sell them people will not buy them its a simple logic. you can not get Pentax any where other then online or very specific stores. give Pentax to best buy , wall mart, target and so on and people will buy. that my very simple two cents.
02-03-2009, 11:53 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by redpigeons Quote
well once you had a Pentax you will always have one or miss one. BUT!
I live in NYC surrounded by the best camera stores in the world and even here had to wait for the K20D to be on stock . so ... if you will not sell them people will not buy them its a simple logic. you can not get Pentax any where other then online or very specific stores. give Pentax to best buy , wall mart, target and so on and people will buy. that my very simple two cents.
You're right...I don't know why Pentax seems to be available, like Dick Cheney... only...almost...at undisclosed locations....
02-03-2009, 11:54 PM   #4
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I've had a people comment on my camera and ask "Is that a Canon?" "No, it's a Pentax." About 30% will answer that they never heard of them and another 5% didn't know they were still in business. Once I let them handle the camera they comments are usually something like "well build" or "solid." I don't know if I've solid any cameras, but it would seem the best marketing Pentax has are fans like those on this forum.

For myself, my father always raved about Pentax lens he used in the 60s and 70s, so I guess I kind of grew up with Pentax. When it came time for my first camera it was a Pentax film point and shoot (which I still have actually). So like lesmore says, it sticks.

The Km is a step toward the main stream. I like the direction the products are going. Let's see how popular it gets.

02-04-2009, 12:44 AM   #5
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I'm a sophomore in college, and when i get to my digital photog class this semester, i see that only 3 people in the class did not have nikons, 2 of them were canons and the third was me with a pentax k10 and m50 f/2
i had a pentax me super for film class a few years ago, got a canon powershot s3is (pentax doesnt even make a superzoom) and when i decided to upgrade to a dslr, im so glad i didnt switch to canon like i was thinking about. the in body sr, capability to use my manual glass and overall package offered seemed to really trounce the similarly priced canikons.
makes me wonder why ive only ever run into one other person with a pentax dslr at my school and around the city
02-04-2009, 03:07 AM   #6
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Well, in your class there zero Leica, zero Olympus, zero Mamiya, zero Sony, zero Hasselblad, zero Rollei...but those brands don't seem to worry so much about market penetration.
02-04-2009, 03:13 AM   #7
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Pentax in the US ran a big campaign last year when the K20D and K200D were introduced, in big morning papers in the most populated areas. Here in Sweden, where I live, Pentax continously has full page adverts in leading photographic magazines. The latest advert that I saw was about the K-m.

But advertising is not enough.
Important is to get covered in news articles, tests, and also internet-media.

As for shops, many stores are unwilling to carry the Pentax brand beacuse they sell so few of them so they don't want to buy cameras that are not selling. It is a moment 22 situation, because the stores needs to carry the camera so they can be sold.

Perhaps Pentax should do like Apple has done, making their own stores!
Pentax Store!

Imagine a Red cubic shaped store at the major city, only selling Pentax equipment accessories.
02-04-2009, 03:45 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by RMabo Quote
...
Perhaps Pentax should do like Apple has done, making their own stores!
Pentax Store!

Imagine a Red cubic shaped store at the major city, only selling Pentax equipment accessories.
Yep, imagining myself driving 1040km to buy a new lens cap

02-04-2009, 03:54 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by RMabo Quote
Imagine a Red cubic shaped store at the major city, only selling Pentax equipment accessories.
Shouldn't it be pentaprism shaped?
02-04-2009, 04:06 AM   #10
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For me I never knew Pentax existed.

My first camera was a Minolta XG and I knew my next camera would have to be a Nikon.

A Nikon FE2 (a tank) was purchased. My good friends bought Oly OM1, OM2,OM4TI.

Even then Canon was not a player - even when they introduced the impressive AE-1 program

Yes - Pentax Imaging has done a dismal job regards marketing (worldwide) and still is the same today so how the Head of this dept. can be proud of this achievement is beyond me

Unfortunately Pentax was always viewed as an oddball purchase with most enthusiasts here in SA (seems the same worldwide) in the 80's 90's and as one forum mentioned above does not exist in the eye's of the modern consumer
02-04-2009, 04:26 AM   #11
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Pentax at this point is for enthusiasts; people who can be arsed to do their research before buying things.

I tend to always do that, and seldomly go with the most popular brands of anything. If Pentax puts less dollars into marketing and more into making great products then I'm all for that. I don't care whether they're a big brand as long as they're making enough of a profit to stay afloat, which they have been doing for a long time.

I was 23 when I bought my first DSLR last year and it was (surprise) a Pentax. For several months I had been reading about different models in magazines and on the Internet and eventually narrowed it down to either Olympus or Pentax. A lack of faith in the 4/3 system, expensive lenses and no/poor backwards compatibility with existing OM lenses swayed me back to Pentax and when I found an amazing deal on the K100D Super in a local store that was it.

So yes, young folks still buy Pentax... Just not young and clueless people.
02-04-2009, 04:40 AM   #12
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Pentax may not be doing, or at a place that you may want them to be, but they may be exactly where THEY want to be.

Just some food for thought...

c[_]
02-04-2009, 04:57 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Erik Quote
young folks still buy Pentax... Just not young and clueless people.
Well put Erik. For me selfishly, I want Pentax to be profitable so I can buy their cameras, but not too popular, so maybe one day I might hear those magical words: "Eh, who needs an SMC-A* 85mm f1.4 lens anyway? Everyone's going digital now. Sure, you can have it for 50 bucks." It's a fine line I tell you!
02-04-2009, 05:50 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by dylansalt Quote
Unfortunately Pentax was always viewed as an oddball purchase with most enthusiasts here in SA (seems the same worldwide) in the 80's 90's and as one forum mentioned above does not exist in the eye's of the modern consumer
Pentax hasn't always been an oddball purchase. Thousands of people bought K1000's as their first decent film camera. Pentax just hasn't been able to repeat that success lately. I carry my K10D to work everyday and it has impressed an Olympus user and a Nikon user. As was mentioned earlier, they pick it up and are surprised by the quality of build and how great it feels in their hand.
02-04-2009, 05:58 AM   #15
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I think if I ever saw a Pentax commercail on TV I would fall out.
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