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11-01-2011, 05:24 AM   #781
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QuoteOriginally posted by nosnoop Quote
This is just wishful thinking, IMHO. Very few DSLR buyers worry about "upgrade path"; especially when they realize most of the lenses cannot be used effectively in a FF camera.
As for halo product, the Sony FF certainly did not help them to sell the A390/A290. Only their introduction of SLTs and NEX cameras saved the day.
upgrade path arguement was in relation to people who would buy an enthusiast camera, and i think a lot of that market does take that into account (as in I can't swing the 5d mkII right now so I'll get a 7d and get the 5 D in a year or 2 for a Canon example)

As for Sony the number one reason they get the volume they do is nothing to do with the quality of the cameras they sell but everything to do with the distribution chain they can pressure to carry the product. (as in if you want our products you have to carry this - Sony has always done this type of thing)
Distribution is Key to any growth strategy (and something Pentax really needs to address if they want to move to the next level)

11-01-2011, 05:40 AM   #782
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Really? Full frame for under 1500 dollars? As a camera company, why would you even bother? For it to make sense for Pentax/Ricoh, there has to be a premium price on it, I think a minimum of 3000 dollars. Otherwise, they are pretty much just committing suicide.
I agree on the premium price, but i think the market will dictate it to some degree. If the 5d MK II and the D800 are in the wild at $2500 then that will be the target price. Unless of course they can come up with a camera that approaches a 3d/1dx on performance then they can get away with a high price than the 5D (Relity is though if the Gap is too large from K5-FF then FF will not do as well. As for the $1660 price the pound idea comes in at not a chance that territory will be the top apsc for a while yet (the K5 drops are only because it nears the end of it's cycle)
11-01-2011, 05:41 AM   #783
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I will buy either a FF version of K-5 with IS/improved AF/Flash and smallest in class size

or a super APS-C pro camera. Similar to the 1D series but 1.5 crop. (Great AF, FPS, improved flash and smallest in class size)

or a DSLR modular Sensor mount, assuming pentax is confident that their body is so good and over specced that it can last at least 3 generation worth of usage. imagine upgrading from k-5 to k-3 to k-1 by changing only the sensor at 500 bucks per upgrade


I believe there an upgrade path for everyone . just give us more choice!

Last edited by Ayuready; 11-01-2011 at 05:49 AM.
11-01-2011, 05:57 AM - 1 Like   #784
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QuoteOriginally posted by F-Stop Quote
I've read this multiple times in this thread thus far and I don't buy it. PENTAX has a different customer base/following than other brands. Many grew up with and had a PENTAX as their first camera and have followed their progression while shooting with the current offerings or other brands.
No different than other brands. None at all. Big myth.

QuoteOriginally posted by F-Stop Quote
Since PENTAX Imaging is now a stand alone division, assuming $150,000,000 in revenue for 2010, 5% for FF results in $7.5Million or 2500 FF cameras if priced at $3000 a piece. That's not a lot of cameras.
Drop your estimate by about 30% to account for distribution and retailer margins putting you at less than 2,000 units per year through a global supply chain. And the problems with inadequate AF and far too few lenses to sell-through a complete system are going to limit sales even further.

And, if Pentaxians are super-loyal fans beyond other brands, then FF buyers would come at the expense of APS-C K-5 purchasers. Less demand for the K-5 = higher prices which makes that model a problem in the channel competitively.

QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Really? Full frame for under 1500 dollars? As a camera company, why would you even bother? For it to make sense for Pentax/Ricoh, there has to be a premium price on it, I think a minimum of 3000 dollars. Otherwise, they are pretty much just committing suicide.
Sony found that out despite and installed ex-Minolta base probably 3x larger than the current Pentax base. They cancelled the sub-$2,000 A850 due to the fact that lower price did zero to move the market. Then they cancelled the A900 because the market simply could not grow. Once you sell to your loyal crowd with a durable semi-"pro" model, continuing the sales streak for FF has proved problematic because most consumers do not see enough IQ difference to justify a $1,000 body premium, plus the substantial premium per lens. Not to mention the weight factor.

Anything sub-10,000 units per year is going to have to command a profit of close to $1,000 per body net to manufacturer. Then there's issues with low demand and sensor supply and the costs therein. Nikon buys sensors in bulk because they have 12x the market size of Pentax FF. Pentax will not be getting the same price per FF sensor Nikon does. That's just how the market works. Low volume = higher prices.

QuoteOriginally posted by unfocused Quote
The *istD has room for a full-frame sensor (and it has a full-frame mirror)- so there's your answer
If you follow the tack of Pentax DSLR development (and pretty much all DSLR development from all suppliers) you see an increase ins size related to:

1) PDAF development. To get the Nikon and Canon effect, you need a bigger body to handle the larger array.

2) SR. It takes up space. Quiet a bit. Not only that, it probably requires a much more solid body than the *istD to anchor the SR against internal tremor. The Pentax Q:


3) Data dump. Every complaint about the older series DSLR's from any brand is the very slow data read-out. As the megapixels go up and the FPS and video are incorporated the classic electronics conundrum is reached whereby you need more pipes and bigger pipes, and heat increases commensurately requiring cooling systems or simple air space. The K10D rockets up in size likely because of SR and the need for added circuits to handle the data. There's a limit to miniaturization here. The Nikon D3x has 3 circuit systems to handle the high FPS and huge file sizes.

4) SDM. Another motor. More space.

5) WR. Every seal and baffle adds weight and mm. They add up.

6) Rear LCD. The *istD has a tiny 1.5" LCD. Bigger LCD's = more space. They've gotten marginally thinner in the last 7 years, but not by much.

All manufacturers have followed an identical track. Camera sizes have generally increased (especially mass) because consumers prefer features over compactness. Manufacturers try and retain these features and reduce size as best possible (K-5), but there are limits. This despite better batteries and the move to SD cards from CF. If you step back and look at the big market, you see why Olympus and Panasonic abandon the SLR format: they see it cannot get much smaller and they would have become a me-too DSLR makers with a smaller sensor and no cost advantage therein. Canon and Nikon models have actually increased in size since the original Rebel and D40, and sales have accelerated.

All you have to do is look at Pentax from the *istD line to the K10D where there is a 20% jump in weight and just under in size. And that's using APS-C sensors on a 135 k-mount. Since then Pentax has worked to miniaturize, but they are limited by the rear LCD, PDAF, SR, and data read-out circuitry. None of that can get substantially smaller unless you substitute tactile controls for a touchscreen system. and if the FF zooms are going to be large beasts, minor compactness in the body will do nothing to make the system stand out from Canikon.

Can you strip features to get to an inexpensive FF at sub-700 grams? Not if your competition is the Nikon D700/800 (and not their used market for sure). On the features, price, size, whole system grid, the vast majority of consumer preference is for features at x price. That's the value dynamic at work. That's why Sony is moving towards e-mount (an FF mount BTW) and the NEX-7. There is obviously consensus in camera engineering that if marketing says a camera body has to be x size and y mass, then the mirror/prism system has to go (Sony, M43, Fuji), or that an ILC system has to use a smaller sensor (Pentax Q, Nikon V1).

11-01-2011, 06:07 AM   #785
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Small correction: the SDM motor is in the lens; so it won't add size to the body (only if you count the power contacts)
11-01-2011, 06:15 AM   #786
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Small correction: the SDM motor is in the lens; so it won't add size to the body (only if you count the power contacts)
Right. I meant to say retained screw drive, the price of backwards compatibility.
11-01-2011, 06:35 AM   #787
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I believe Sony cancelled the A900 to sell through existing inventories before launching the new model(s). there is a lot of talk of 3 FF from Sony in 2012. and 2 models is almost a sure thing
so using Sony as an example but adding your speculation as to why they dropped models is a useless analogy IMO. BTWI would say the A850 dropped as it didn't sell as well as they hoped (largely due to the fact that FF buyers will spend the extra to get to the 900 for one and because it lagged on performance)

As for Pentax not being good enough at AF etc, do you really imagine they aren't working to address this to get current with at least the last gen AF from the big 2. I would think a FF launch would see a few things address. Better AF, Better Flash control, Dual SD slots, and a new processing engine (the engine is probably coming anyway FF or not it is time for that upgrade)
11-01-2011, 07:10 AM   #788
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
And dedicated controls.

EVF only for either pellicle or mirrorless. With the former you keep the k-mount, with the latter a new lens mount is required. That's the dilemma.
Really? How do you know this, great sage?

This is a friendly forum and all, but it's hard to be friendly towards someone who dictates great prophesies as if from on high.

11-01-2011, 07:35 AM   #789
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
And, if Pentaxians are super-loyal fans beyond other brands, then FF buyers would come at the expense of APS-C K-5 purchasers. Less demand for the K-5 = higher prices which makes that model a problem in the channel competitively.
Where to begin with this logic? It is true to a certain, very small extent, case-in-point, me. I am holding off on buying the attractively priced K-5 right now hoping that there will be a bigger step up coming in the future. But while I wait, I'm slowly building my collection of FF glass (the DFA 100 macro is next on my list, I'll probably get the version with the A-ring so I can use it on my film bodies), so they're still making money off me. But what you are utterly failing to take into account is that a full frame body will draw new customers from outside the brand. Some may jump directly into FF, many more will read about the excellent K-1 on Dpreviews or a similar website, and buy into the less expensive K-5 or it's replacement. So it's not a matter of cannibalization, but instead creating new customers, something they desperately need.

The other thing that your argument wholly ignores is the fact that many potential K-1 buyers already own the K-5. If Pentax releases a new APS-C to replace the K-5, how many K-5 owners will feel compelled to replace such a fine camera? That's the problem, the K-5 is too damned good. Folks like me will buy it, you say? Well I don't know, I'm pretty stubborn. I held off on the digital transition for 9 years waiting for my lens manufacturer to come out with a FF offering. I eventually caved in and bought the K20d, and you know what? The crop factor is my only major complaint about the camera. Also most full frame buyers will be pros and semi-pros, folks who generally have two bodies in their bag, a main and a backup, or a wide angle and a portrait body. There's no reason a pro's second body couldn't be a K-5 or it's APS-C successor.
11-01-2011, 08:00 AM   #790
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QuoteOriginally posted by Unsinkable II Quote
Really? How do you know this, great sage?
Mirrorless = a new mount because of the register distance. The k-mount is a mirror mount. For mirrorless you do not need retro-focal lenses to the same degree, so lenses, especially wide angle, can be much, much smaller. It would be nearly pointless to develop a mirrorless system but design a lens mount with the space between the lens and body at the same distance as if there was a mirror. you'd have no mirror and no savings in form factor of the body.

That is why Sony has the mirror A-Mount, and the mirrorless E-Mount. And Pentax with the small sensor mirrorless Q-Mount. And Nikon's new mirrorless mount, as well as the granddaddy of mirrorless,: M43.

You could use K-Mount lenses with an adapter. Sony has one between A- and E-mount. Looks like this:

http://files.petapixel.com/assets/uploads/2011/08/laea2adapter.jpg
11-01-2011, 08:16 AM   #791
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QuoteOriginally posted by maxfield_photo Quote
But what you are utterly failing to take into account is that a full frame body will draw new customers from outside the brand.
Nonsense. There is no market indication to that effect. It did not for Sony, not in any appreciable way. .With Sony as an example and the A-Mount having a much larger installed base than Pentax ever has, AND a FF option for half a decade, we saw the exact opposite of what you claims.

FF will be very expensive which, by definition, will decrease the size of market. The FF market is what it is. Right now there are 3 players. Add a 4th and the pie will probably stay about the same size, just with slightly different divisions. Can Pentax offer FF with equivalent features to the benchmark D700 at the same price catering to 1/12 of the installed base to start with?

That's the stretch in logic.

QuoteOriginally posted by maxfield_photo Quote
That's the problem, the K-5 is too damned good.
Exactly. What's the increase in IQ for double the price?
QuoteOriginally posted by maxfield_photo Quote
The other thing that your argument wholly ignores is the fact that many potential K-1 buyers already own the K-5. If Pentax releases a new APS-C to replace the K-5, how many K-5 owners will feel compelled to replace such a fine camera? That's the problem, the K-5 is too damned good. Folks like me will buy it, you say? Well I don't know, I'm pretty stubborn. I held off on the digital transition for 9 years waiting for my lens manufacturer to come out with a FF offering. I eventually caved in and bought the K20d, and you know what? The crop factor is my only major complaint about the camera. Also most full frame buyers will be pros and semi-pros, folks who generally have two bodies in their bag, a main and a backup, or a wide angle and a portrait body. There's no reason a pro's second body couldn't be a K-5 or it's APS-C successor.
I agree that a few people will invest in more than one higher-end body, but that's usually a pro system and Pentax has no pro support network like Canon or Nikon (and certainly not the lenses).

The biggest draw for a 2nd camera is usually the other direction.....smaller. Enter the Pentax Q and its market justification.

The biggest problem for Pentax FF is price. There's not enough demand at the current price range to generate the volume of sales necessary, so Pentax will likely have to wait until FF sensors drop in price substantially, enough so that the K-5 price as it is now becomes an FF model. That's close to 3-5 years out. What Pentax sorely needs for FF is for Canon, Nikon, and Sony to get into a FF price war. We all thought that was coming about 2 years ago when the Sony A850 was announced, but then the market retracted considerably because Sony was bleeding too much. The vast majority of consumers (and pros) were more than happy with APS-C and were not ponying up the extra $500 for FF. They just were not. And there's no indication that Pentax customers are any different. In fact, there are far fewer of them than even Sony.
11-01-2011, 08:20 AM   #792
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I appreciate your polite response, but I would counter that the registration distance could be negated by other means. Winning requires a winning mentality.

If I stood atop RICOH right now, I would say: "Give me K-Mount in a 25mm deep body, for this, with our pancakes, will make us KINGS."

Folding optics with digital correction is but one method.

Also, look outside your camera orbit; Motorola's Droid Razr uses LAMINATED layers to reduce thickness to an unprecedented (so far) level. Also increases strength.
11-01-2011, 08:34 AM   #793
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Ricoh would, politely, respond: "Dear Sir, we're afraid we must abide the physics laws; we simply cannot offer you a 45.5mm registration distance mount in a 25mm deep body".
Folding optics? How are they supposed to implement that? What optics should be "folded" - we're talking about an interchangeable lens camera, not about a point&shoot with a fixed lens.
And afaik no kind of "digital correction" could compensate for registration distance (although, some may be able to handle a slight misfocus).
11-01-2011, 08:47 AM   #794
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QuoteOriginally posted by Unsinkable II Quote
I appreciate your polite response, but I would counter that the registration distance could be negated by other means. Winning requires a winning mentality.
It cannot be. There are no "other means". Mentality, winning or losing, cannot overcome the laws of optical physics.

QuoteOriginally posted by Unsinkable II Quote
"Give me K-Mount in a 25mm deep body, for this, with our pancakes, will make us KINGS."
Impossible. Older K-Mount glass could not focus properly. By design they are "fixed" to the registration distance. They require actual physical separation from the film/sensor plane. AF could not work on newer lenses. Some lenses would physically hit the sensor due to element intrusion (a problem Leica has addressed by issuing...gasp!...a whole new lens array along with the M9 and successors).

WA lenses would suffer from distortion unless micro-lenses were assimilated into the sensor, again like Leica. A number of zoom lenses would lose the ability to infinity focus without an optical element intruding, and that alone would reduce light by 1-2 stops.

Once you go down the road with folding optics you lose stops. The whole point of an OVF is near 100% true FOV, DR, and no lag (WYSIWYG). Why add digital processing to that purity? At that point you need an EVF, which again makes the case for a new mount. Gimmicks that lose stops of light and then need digital processing to make up for loss are impractical.

You have your Pentax mirrorless at about 25mm: the Q.
11-01-2011, 08:53 AM   #795
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
If you follow the tack of Pentax DSLR development (and pretty much all DSLR development from all suppliers) you see an increase ins size related to:

1) PDAF development. you need a bigger body to handle the larger array.
2) SR. It takes up space.
3) Data dump. As the megapixels go up and the FPS and video are incorporated the classic electronics conundrum is reached whereby you need more pipes and bigger pipes, and heat increases commensurately requiring cooling systems or simple air space.
4) Screwdriven. Another motor. More space.
5) WR. Every seal and baffle adds weight and mm. They add up.
6) Rear LCD. Bigger LCD's = more space.

All manufacturers have followed an identical track. Camera sizes have generally increased (especially mass) because consumers prefer features over compactness. Manufacturers try and retain these features and reduce size as best possible (K-5), but there are limits. This despite better batteries and the move to SD cards from CF. : they see it cannot get much smaller and they would have become a me-too DSLR makers with a smaller sensor and no cost advantage therein.

Can you strip features to get to an inexpensive FF at sub-700 grams? Not if your competition is the Nikon D700/800 (and not their used market for sure). On the features, price, size, whole system grid, the vast majority of consumer preference is for features at x price. That's the value dynamic at work.
A lot of good reasons, so not to much doubt about them. The other side is that Ricoh did buy Pentax and the main part of Pentax is the K-mount system. (otherwise they could just have bought the Q-development and put a Ricoh sticker on it).

So there must be things that are possible! Or is it just a waist of money from a senior Ricoh CEO that bought Pentax from a hobby driven descision?

I don't think that moving in the direction of pro's that are with Canon/Nikon is the market to go after. But between that and currently topping camera for Pentax K-5 there is still a lot of teritory I think.

No idea wheater Ricoh has something smart to pull out of a magic had, but otherwise it will be a system build around K-mount that will future some new things and will try to create a market for it's own.

(I do hope it is on top of K-5 and will future an APS-H sensor).

What can that market strategy be???????????

I think it will move into outdoors and adventure photography. Smal(lish) rugget camera's that can take a drip. Even for that there is a market (need) for a better image quality camera then current K-5 can deliver.
There is still a neede for faster image processing and faster and better AF. So that development and the neede space in the camera is still demanded.

Any ideas on this subject that can be possible (so not to focus on the things that are not possible)?
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