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10-26-2011, 10:36 AM   #586
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
You have to think about what to lose to get much smaller: SR, video, higher FPS, OVF, dual control dials, WR, tripod socket, top LCD. Or what not to include, like the oft-requested tilt/swivel rear LCD
Please remove head from.... ONCE AGAIN, how would higher FPS or Video which are processor ABILITY dependant (AKA firmware programmed abilities) related directly to camera size???? I think the Tilt-swivel rear should never be considered.. give us tethering ability instead (in the extra real estate of a GRIP) and use a remote device (cell phone/tablet/netbook etc..). Most of the WR system does not require extra space that could be saved by NOT having it, and a tripod mount taking up valuable space?? really? how about those pesky shutter release buttons.. damn things always need space below them too.. I think if you really want to split hairs about what takes up space you should stick to the AF system.


QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Circuits and chips and batteries are sourced from common stock bins for affordability.
This is not exactly true and/or accurate.. many companies help fund other companies R&D tech for their specific purpose and therefor get better pricing and availability of said units when they are ready. IF Pentax took this route with developing parts of their camera's it may cost them up front, but it can pay off huge in the long run.


I agree that a better AF system will take up more space in the camera, and it unfortunately is an unavoidable step I think Pentax HAS to make to get to where they need to be... piecing together all the interior components in a camera is like packing a sub-compact car for a 2 week camping trip.. you want a VERY good tetris player at the controls.

10-26-2011, 10:40 AM   #587
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"the D700 Behemoth" lol it's not much different than a K20 or a K10. the D3 and 1D's are Behemoths
10-26-2011, 11:12 AM   #588
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QuoteOriginally posted by Chex Quote
Please remove head from.... ONCE AGAIN, how would higher FPS or Video which are processor ABILITY dependant (AKA firmware programmed abilities) related directly to camera size???? I think the Tilt-swivel rear should never be considered.. give us tethering ability instead (in the extra real estate of a GRIP) and use a remote device (cell phone/tablet/netbook etc..). Most of the WR system does not require extra space that could be saved by NOT having it, and a tripod mount taking up valuable space?? really? how about those pesky shutter release buttons.. damn things always need space below them too.. I think if you really want to split hairs about what takes up space you should stick to the AF system.




This is not exactly true and/or accurate.. many companies help fund other companies R&D tech for their specific purpose and therefor get better pricing and availability of said units when they are ready. IF Pentax took this route with developing parts of their camera's it may cost them up front, but it can pay off huge in the long run.


I agree that a better AF system will take up more space in the camera, and it unfortunately is an unavoidable step I think Pentax HAS to make to get to where they need to be... piecing together all the interior components in a camera is like packing a sub-compact car for a 2 week camping trip.. you want a VERY good tetris player at the controls.
The key equation when it comes to FF: smaller does NOT necessarily translate to more sales.

Dual processors and video processors (separate) take up circuit board space. These data dumps are chip-dependent. I strongly doubt that Pentax can do better than what Canon, Nikon, and Sony have been able to do. Unfortunately there are significant heat/bandwidth issues that cannot be overcome readily (and affordably) through silicon design as much as some here would like Ricoh to superfund this.

This is not an engineering or design issue. There is zero evidence that marginal compactness of a camera body significantly impacts sales upwards. Not when the lens mount is the same as it has been since the 1970's and all else follows that circle of confusion.

Every WR seal requires a 1/2mm of baffle, and it all adds up, both in weight and dimensionality.

About 50% of the DSLR market has little access to personal home computers (the developing world, especially Asia). So rear screens and on-board PP and editing are necessary. That's more power and more chip.

Remote tethering is long overdue from Pentax. It's absence is a travesty of marketing.

One way to reduce space would be to eliminate manual controls and move to an all-LCD touchscreen system. We're seeing this in P&S cameras. Of course that's a tradeoff for photography purists who prefer tactile feedback and ergonomic design. Which group buys $2,500 cameras? Will this design suck people from a Nikon D800 purchase? Are you sure?

Tripod mounts were not a problem in 135 because the film plane was so thin they could intrude forward of the plane easily in the delta between the bottom edge of the pressure plate and the shutter. A sensor and supporting electronics cannot accommodate that. So the tripod mount has to locate underneath; one reason why DSLR's are a bit taller than 135 SLR's. Actually, this trend started in the 1990's as bodies became lighter due to plastic construction and the reinforcing necessary to support the big glass had to fill space internally. Plastic needed to be 4x thicker than metal for the same structural integrity, but still be 60% lighter and probably 80% cheaper. From about 1985 on we got cameras bigger in dimension but lighter in weight, across all brands. In fact, Olympus could not make this transition with their OM system and abandoned the SLR market entirely.

The whole idea that a stripped down FF will be affordable does not hold true, nor does the concept that Pentax can simply miniaturize their cameras while others neglect to do so. You think the other companies don't try and make their cameras smaller? There are obviously universal design constraints, so that's why mirrorless is coming up in the rear-view mirror (sic).
10-26-2011, 11:31 AM   #589
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I sure don't want a stripped down FF, I just could live without SR on camera or lenses. most touch screens are poor responsiveness and who wants to carry and use a stylus with their camera?? that 1-2mm of baffle for WR may end up being an entire 4mm wider/taller/deeper.. those are trade-off's I think everyone is willing to make. And as much as "smaller does NOT necessarily translate to more sales." this may be true, but in today's market do you not think it would be advantageous to have as small of a unit as possible for that format? IF as much as 50% of the DSLR market doesn't have a home PC.. I think that would be more of the entry level DSLR market, and NOT a FF intended market.. if you don't have a home PC and your looking at a $2000+ camera.. you should probably re-prioritize. As long as the quality is there, and the features are there.. people looking at a Pentax FF upgrade path WILL spend the equal amount they would if they had to change-over to CaNikon units.. FF comes at a cost, pay it or stay happy with an APS-C.. If Pentax chose to do a 2 tier FF release like their APS-C line, that could change things a "little", but that would be a tricky game to get into for them right now.

10-26-2011, 11:48 AM   #590
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
...the concept that Pentax can simply miniaturize their cameras while others neglect to do so. You think the other companies don't try and make their cameras smaller?
Well, earlier you implied up there that no, they don't (or haven't, up to this point) because what they perceive as marketing reasons, not design reasons. Which is it?

FWIW, folks with no camera designs under their belt or direct qualifications to speak about camera body design limitations are really just offering opinions here, no matter how authoritatively they give those opinions. It's worth noting that not everyone shares this "D700 is as small as it can possibly get" opinion:

QuoteOriginally posted by Thom Hogan:
...FX bodies can get as small as any 35mm film camera ever was...


.
10-26-2011, 11:56 AM   #591
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jan-61 Quote
To get back to the FF-cam-size-discussion, yet there lies the challance for Pentax to come up with an unprecedented compact FF-DSLR.
I think (as a designer), the extent of 'compactness' of a SLR is especially related to the width of that device. If it becomes less wide, but higher and/or deeper with volume remained constant, it already 'feels' more compact.

One could also think of an update of the MZ-D prototype, that had the vertical grip integrated and still had the typical Pentax-compactness and look and feel


Jan.
Very good points, I agree.

This 'compactness' is something that will really only manifest it's advantage fully if Ricoh can get the bodies back in the specialty stores, at point-of-sale places where they can be handled.

Standing at a counter and comparing the feel of D7000 to the K-5, for example, favors Pentax. That same 'feel' advantage could translate to a D800 vs K-1 comparison, especially if the feel includes a 'compactness' attribute without sacrificing a solidity. As we have demonstrated to us all the time, and especially lately, sexiness sells cameras just as effectively as it sells phones, mp3 players, and tablet computers.


.
10-26-2011, 12:18 PM   #592
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Maybe what they ought to do with this FF sensor is to make the body look like that of 645D, with the feel of a medium format almost, except that it is much smaller. Call it Pentax 135D with K mount. Maybe even detachable sensor back so that you can shoot film too.
10-26-2011, 12:25 PM   #593
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fontan Quote
Maybe what they ought to do with this FF sensor is to make the body look like that of 645D, with the feel of a medium format almost, except that it is much smaller. Call it Pentax 135D with K mount. Maybe even detachable sensor back so that you can shoot film too.
neat idea except the detachable back. the backs for MF are a PITA and have issues with being off just slightly in the lens to film plane and require shimming quite often. It's one of the 645d's big advantages

the design idea is neat and get rid of the AA filter (apparently Nikon will have a second variant of the D800 with no AA)

Baby 645 feel, use the 36mp sensor and launch a 645DmkII with a FF 645 sensor 60mp

i can feel my credit rating cringing already

10-26-2011, 12:32 PM - 1 Like   #594
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Ricoh, and The Innovator's Dilemma

.

I keep mentioning "The 18 month Plan." I'm using that as shorthand for 'stay afloat tactical planning vs. longer term, strategic planning.'

The obvious way to not make an immediate mistake is to implement a good, solid 18-month plan. But string enough of these tactic-rich, strategy-free plans together, and you can end up at:





The financial arguments against Ricoh moving into FF are examples of 18-month plan thinking if Ricoh intends to solidify and keep K-mount as a revenue generator in the years to come, as I talked about in this post.. If they don't plan to invest in K-mount, FF DSLR doesn't make much sense. (Think about what that statement means to you, even if you intend to stay an aps-c DSLR shooter.)

Here's a great summary of why the 18-month plan, attractive though it may be to the pedantic, limited-vision accountant types, can really hurt a company in the long run:

The Innovator's Dilemma, solved.

"In the lead up to today's release of the Steve Jobs biography, there's been an increasing stream of news surrounding its subject. As a business researcher, I was particularly interested in this recent article that referenced from his biography a list of Jobs's favorite books. There's one business book on this list, and it "deeply influenced" Jobs. That book is The Innovator's Dilemma by HBS Professor Clay Christensen.

But what's most interesting to me isn't that The Innovator's Dilemma was on that list. It's that Jobs solved the conundrum.

When describing his period of exile from Apple — when John Sculley took over — Steve Jobs described one fundamental root cause of Apple's problems. That was to let profitability outweigh passion: "My passion has been to build an enduring company where people were motivated to make great products. The products, not the profits, were the motivation. Sculley flipped these priorities to where the goal was to make money. It's a subtle difference, but it ends up meaning everything."

Anyone familiar with Professor Christensen's work will quickly recognize the same causal mechanism at the heart of the Innovator's Dilemma: the pursuit of profit. The best professional managers — doing all the right things and following all the best advice — lead their companies all the way to the top of their markets in that pursuit... only to fall straight off the edge of a cliff after getting there.

Which is exactly what had happened to Apple. A string of professional managers had led the company straight off the edge of that cliff. The fall had almost killed the company. It had 90 days working capital on hand when he took over — in other words, Apple was only three months away from bankruptcy.

When he returned, Jobs completely upended the company. There were thousands of layoffs. Scores of products were killed stone dead. He knew the company had to make money to stay alive, but he transitioned the focus of Apple away from profits. Profit was viewed as necessary, but not sufficient, to justify everything Apple did. That attitude resulted in a company that looks entirely different to almost any other modern Fortune 500 company. One striking example: there's only one person Apple with responsibility for a profit and loss. The CFO. It's almost the opposite of what is taught in business school. An executive who worked at both Apple and Microsoft described the differences this way: "Microsoft tries to find pockets of unrealized revenue and then figures out what to make. Apple is just the opposite: It thinks of great products, then sells them. Prototypes and demos always come before spreadsheets."

Similarly, Apple talks a lot about its great people. But make no mistake — they are there only in service of the mission. A headhunter describes it thus: "It is a happy place in that it has true believers. People join and stay because they believe in the mission of the company." It didn't matter how great you were, if you couldn't deliver to that mission — you were out. Jobs's famous meltdowns upon his return were symptomatic of this. They might have become less frequent in recent years, but if a team couldn't deliver a great product, they got the treatment. The exec in charge of MobileMe was replaced on the spot, in front of his entire team, after a botched launch. A former Apple product manager described Apple's attitude like this: "You have the privilege of working for the company that's making the coolest products in the world. Shut up and do your job, and you might get to stay."

Everything — the business, the people — are subservient to the mission: building great products. And rather than listening to, or asking their customers what they wanted; Apple would solve problems customers didn't know they had with products they didn't even realize they wanted.

By taking this approach, Apple bent all the rules of disruption. To disrupt yourself, for example, Professor Christensen's research would typically prescribe setting up a separate company that eventually goes on to defeat the parent. It's incredibly hard to do this successfully; Dayton Dry Goods pulled it off with Target. IBM managed to do it with the transition from mainframes to PCs, by firewalling the businesses in entirely different geographies. Either way, the number of companies that have successfully managed to do it is a very, very short list. And yet Apple's doing it to itself right now with the utmost of ease. Here's new CEO Tim Cook, on the iPad disrupting the Mac business: "Yes, I think there is some cannibalization... the iPad team works on making their product the best. Same with the Mac team." It's almost unheard of to be able to manage disruption like this.

They can do it because Apple hasn't optimized its organization to maximize profit. Instead, it has made the creation of value for customers its priority. When you do this, the fear of cannibalization or disruption of one's self just melts away. In fact, when your mission is based around creating customer value, around creating great products, cannibalization and disruption aren't "bad things" to be avoided. They're things you actually strive for — because they let you improve the outcome for your customer.

When I first learned about the theory of disruption, what amazed me was its predictive power; you could look into the future with impressive clarity. And yet, there was a consistent anomaly. That one dark spot on Professor Christensen's prescience was always his predictions on Apple. I had the opportunity to talk about it with him subsequently, and I remember him telling me: "There's just something different about those guys. They're freaks." Well, he was right. With the release of Jobs's biography, we now know for sure why. Jobs was profoundly influenced by the Innovator's Dilemma — he saw the company he created almost die from it. When he returned to Apple, Jobs was determined to solve it. And he did. That "subtle difference" — of flipping the priorities away from profit and back to great products — took Apple from three months away from bankruptcy, to one of the most valuable and influential companies in the world.
"


.

Last edited by jsherman999; 10-26-2011 at 04:03 PM.
10-26-2011, 12:35 PM   #595
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
neat idea except the detachable back. the backs for MF are a PITA and have issues with being off just slightly in the lens to film plane and require shimming quite often. It's one of the 645d's big advantages

the design idea is neat and get rid of the AA filter (apparently Nikon will have a second variant of the D800 with no AA)

Baby 645 feel, use the 36mp sensor and launch a 645DmkII with a FF 645 sensor 60mp

i can feel my credit rating cringing already

I see. Well, who shoots films these days anyway.

Very much agree on the AA filter issue. Pentax (surprisingly?) made the right call on that with 645D.

Yeah, 36mp FF sensor (no stains pls), mini 645D, $2,999 msrp.

I'll buy it.
10-26-2011, 12:40 PM   #596
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QuoteOriginally posted by Chex Quote
Please remove head from.... ONCE AGAIN, how would higher FPS or Video which are processor ABILITY dependant (AKA firmware programmed abilities) related directly to camera size????
Sturdier mirror, bigger mirror mechanism and motor capable of faster FPS. Bigger shutter, capable of faster re-arming.

eddie: the D700 is bigger and heavier (over 1Kg). IMO nowhere near the K10D/K20D.
10-26-2011, 12:54 PM   #597
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Probably the fastest and easiest and most economical way for Ricoh to deal with this possibility is to come with K modules for GXR, both APS-C and FF. This of course is the mirrorless application of it, so to speak. Depending on the pricing, this can directly compete against DSLR in the same price range, and this being the "Pentax" products.

I don't know. If DSLR is to stay, it cannot complete against mirrorless in terms of size. DSLRs will lose every time. So if Ricoh is looking to differentiate Pentax from "other" brands and to keep the DSLR line, I am not sure if they really have to go small when designing next generation DSLR. You can pursue that in your mirrorless line, including Q, which is out already.

But, I bet you that there were plans of APS-C or FF mirrorless in the works at Pentax before they got bought out.

So who knows.
10-26-2011, 12:59 PM   #598
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fontan Quote
Probably the fastest and easiest and most economical way for Ricoh to deal with this possibility is to come with K modules for GXR, both APS-C and FF. This of course is the mirrorless application of it, so to speak. Depending on the pricing, this can directly compete against DSLR in the same price range, and this being the "Pentax" products.

I don't know. If DSLR is to stay, it cannot complete against mirrorless in terms of size. DSLRs will lose every time. So if Ricoh is looking to differentiate Pentax from "other" brands and to keep the DSLR line, I am not sure if they really have to go small when designing next generation DSLR. You can pursue that in your mirrorless line, including Q, which is out already.

But, I bet you that there were plans of APS-C or FF mirrorless in the works at Pentax before they got bought out.

So who knows.
This is an argument I never quite fully understand. Pentax won't be positioned to win in terms of absolute smallest equipment (disregarding the Q), sure. But if you believe there's an appreciable difference between m4/3 and APS-C, and between APS-C and FF, then there is inherent value in being smallest in class to differentiate yourself from your immediate competitors. Someone may not be willing to sacrifice sensor format for a smaller package (i.e. picking m4/3 over an APS-C dslr), but a smaller package within the same format is DEFINITELY a selling point.
10-26-2011, 01:07 PM   #599
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Sturdier mirror, bigger mirror mechanism and motor capable of faster FPS. Bigger shutter, capable of faster re-arming.

eddie: the D700 is bigger and heavier (over 1Kg). IMO nowhere near the K10D/K20D.
it doesn't feel that bad in hand having shot one a freind bought for a bit. but i shot my k10 with the grip 90% of the time. less so with my k7, which though smaller than my k10 doesn't feel any lighter (actually if anything it feels a little heavier probably due to the more solid feel of the unit)
10-26-2011, 01:12 PM   #600
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Kunzite, what exactly do you use your camera for?

In my world, if it produces excellent 20x16 prints it's a "performance tool". If it can do so under a whole variety of conditions and for all sorts of subject matter it's a high-performance photographic tool for what I wish to achieve.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
And I'd bet you would love to have some K-5-like features: - fast PRIME-II (or newer) and a decent buffer, for responsiveness - quiet but much faster mirror (shorter VF blackout) Maybe even: - higher build quality (not necessarily the same body), weather sealed - dual wheel control - SR - much faster AF


I know you mean well but I couldn 't really care less about these things. What's already there is good enough for my purpose. When you use an MX for 23 years you're not constantly looking for upgrades. The only thing you worry about is film quality. While using the MX I had other cameras as second strings - a Ricoh XR7 and an ME-F. The picture-taking experience was different, perhaps less deliberate, but the end-results were much the same. Your list of goodies is meaningless unless you have a huge disposable income to go chasing after every technical "advance" that comes along. Are they must-haves for you? If so, why? How will they help you get better pics?

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
I'd like a FF camera just for the bigger viewfinder


The *istDS and K-7 both have excellent pentaprism finders. Why the need to go to FF? Admittedly the FF viewfinder is larger but not by so much that it's an issue. Like everything in photography there's a trade-off. If you want more of one thing it usually comes at the expense of something else.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
you must hate everything new


New can be interesting but unless it's necessary to my photography I don't feel the urge to invest in it (like your list above).

Sorry, Kunzite, I'm not here to make Pentax rich by buying stuff I don't need. I'll leave that to the millions of feature-crazy pixel-peepers who can't do without.
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