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02-15-2013, 02:19 PM   #1231
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
It was marketing who allowed them to, and this isn't what Pentax is known for.
No, a good product sells itself. Six years ago Pentax was almost in each in every serious camerastore in the Netherlands and Belgium. Now? They're nowhere. But their marketing was just as bad six years ago as it is right now. What did change is that they lost their advantage. As a tiny company they need to be ahead of the competition is features, quality and price. They had that back then and have now lost that.

02-15-2013, 02:28 PM   #1232
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Sorry... what? A good product would put itself into the shelves, and made its presence known with no marketing at work? Somehow I can't accept that...
Pentax never lacked good products, by the way.
02-15-2013, 02:40 PM - 1 Like   #1233
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Sorry... what? A good product would put itself into the shelves, and made its presence known with no marketing at work? Somehow I can't accept that...
Ok, then explain why Pentax disappeared from the shelves around here so suddenly.

I've never seen a commercial for a Sony camera either, but they managed to fill the shelves that Pentax previously occupied.

QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Pentax never lacked good products, by the way.
True, I did not say that. They're still good now even. Good isn't enough though. They were excellent compared to their competition about six years ago.
02-15-2013, 03:01 PM   #1234
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Pushing products in stores is marketing, not an intrinsic characteristic of the product; Pentax couldn't afford that, Sony however could and did. Sony can easily afford to losses that would instantly kill Pentax. Best selling products are actually some lousy entry levels...
I'm not sure about De Klundert, but around here I saw Sony heavily marketing their stuff, e.g. having articles in the few photo magazines we have. That's if we were to talk about their better products. True, Pentax would also have some full-page commercial in the said magazines.

02-15-2013, 03:25 PM - 1 Like   #1235
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I agree with Kunzite, though I see what Clavius means about good products. Unfortunately, Pentax is so out of people's minds and attention that they really have to scramble far more to get to the same position. Their marketing is horrible, just downright nonexistent.
02-15-2013, 04:57 PM   #1236
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QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
So, modern very functional equipment looks like leftover junk?!? Remember, we were comparing cameras. I mentioned the Sony A99 as something Pentax should have done long ago. (FF + IBIS) So if the A99 is a leftover from a Korean concentration camp, then what does that make a K5 then? Leftover from the dark ages? (Albeit with nicer ergonomics.)
So you actually do agree that the looks of photographic equipment isn't totally irrelevant? I thought so.

That opens the possibility that some equipment is better-looking than other equipment. Personally, I think the Sony NEX-7 is a masterpiece of engineering and quite good-looking too, so the fact that they made the ugly sister of K10D doesn't mean they have forgotten how to make great industry design after Apple replaced them in the "walkman market".

(I think, however, that we can agree that there is indeed a bit too much talk about the looks of photo equipment these days - I'm thinking of e.g. Fuji's Leica-lookalikes)

Last edited by gazonk; 02-15-2013 at 05:03 PM.
02-16-2013, 06:30 AM   #1237
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I see what you mean Clavius, and style may not matter to you, but it matters to most people for many reasons, some of them explained in the few posts above. A tool is always more than "just a tool". That said, nothing wrong with being immune to style or hype

I think it's a misconception to equate design with style (I'm a designer). Design is at the crossroad of style, function, and psychology. It's about how people relate to the product, how it fits their perception. Also style is different than beauty.
Re/ dentists, their equipment is carefully designed to look more "medical" than "industrial", so people will feel more relaxed. You go to the dentist to be healed, not just to have a tooth drilled. It's about getting better, not being hurt, and the design acknowledges that.
Search "hammer" in Google Images, you won't find an ugly one .
02-16-2013, 11:07 AM   #1238
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The tool not only has to function, but it has to make the user's life easier to use it. If Pentax brings in an option to compete with those FF cameras already available, and it stays with the same excellent UI of its predecessors, it will turn some heads and bring in interest even from outside the brand. Whilst the look may not be all that important for someone who just wants to get the job done, it matters to some, but matters even more if it's difficult still to use compared with other tools of its caliber.

03-03-2013, 10:05 AM   #1239
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SWOT Analysis

Hi everyone. First off, in the interests of full disclosure I am also a Canon FF user (5DMkII) and have used Nikon FF (D700) before that. I also have used Pentax gear -- back in the day it was my first DSLR (K10d). This week I bought a K-01 w/40mm. I am wanting a daily beater for my 365 project and the price was great. I am also still wishing Pentax could get there act together because I still have some irrational brand loyalty.

So I would love to see a Pentax FF. I would buy one. However, I'm not sure the business case is very strong for one. FF/Fast Lenses/Low Prices/Low Volumes = not sustainable. You have to have really great margins to justify such a low volume product and since P/R is not vertically integrated (they source all their sensors) there is no way for them to gain a competitive advantage through controlling costs/supply chain management. The only place left to gain margins is either through product distribution or upping the sticker price.

No offense to any posters here, but from my work in manufacturing I know from first hand experience that having a great product doesn't mean 1) It will sell; and, 2) when it does sell that you will make any money. Pentax, beloved as they are, are in business to make money off the sale of their equipment. Yes, you and I would be happy, but are there enough of us? And how many have left in the last five years?

So I propose we all try our hand at a little SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) activity. I'll start it out, but I know from reading the posts that there are those who are better positioned to flush these out a bit more.

Pentax Full Frame

Strengths
Existing demand
Could command high margins
Conservative competition leaves room for new ideas

Weaknesses
Far behind on FF lens development -- very expensive to get full line-up.
Pro features not quite up to par (Nikon AF and CLS, Canon Video)
Little leverage over cost/supply chain


Opportunities
Distribution -- Go Direct! The small town camera store is dead in the US (or barely breathing). Could Pentax go direct with actual direct pricing (ie cut out BH & Adorama and no not the Pentax store prices, real direct prices)
Size -- m4/3 just shows size can sell, Can Pentax create a truly small FF camera (Think LX body shape)?


Threats

The Consumers with lots of old FF Pentax glass are not necessarily those who will plunk down 2k for a DSLR
Sensor supply and cost
Price without equivalent performance to CaNikon
Speed to production on the full line of products and accessories
Conservative company will produce essentially a D600 that doesn't quite work as well and costs at least as much and sells much fewer units...

But I'm a pessimist. What do you think? SWOT it.
03-03-2013, 11:48 PM   #1240
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People can dream on with the LX sized FF DSLR. My olympus EP-3 is roughly as big as my pentax MX, and that's with a µ4/3 sensor and no mirror or pentaprism!

Last edited by Spare Tire; 03-03-2013 at 11:53 PM.
03-04-2013, 11:11 AM   #1241
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QuoteOriginally posted by Spare Tire Quote
People can dream on with the LX sized FF DSLR.
Carrying on that daydreaming, an MX-1 style (not LX-styled) FF or APS-C camera would make a lot of sense, IMO. In fact, I think Pentax would make a big mistake if they didn't go for it relatively soon, á la the Sony RX line and the Fuji X-100/10/20 line.

All they have to do is to take the nice MX-1 desing, with brass top plates and all, then make it slightly bigger, if necessary, (for the FF sensor, at least), add an EVF, a hot shoe and mic input and voilá, they've got themselves a nice looking hipster toy even the grumpy old curmudgeons will love. I'd buy one.
Sure, it would be a niche product but then again, so is the whole brand these days. A larger sensor MX-1 style camera would have a lot of marketing potential, and the halo effect would sell the other models, too.

So why not? Why should the Pentax FF camera have to be a DSLR? It might be more feasible to start with a fixed lens mirrorless design first, hype it, make some money with it, and then come up with a FF DSLR model, too.

Now that I think of it, the MX-1 body concept would also work as a base for a nice looking mirrorless system, probably APS-C -based. I think Pentax may already have the ingredients for a new mirrorless hit in their hands, in the form of the new MX-1 design. But only if they don't fsck it up by doing nothing, and only settle for this one p&s model.
03-04-2013, 03:10 PM   #1242
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The market has no place for another mirrorless APS-c mount. Samsung has been going at it for years and they're not making a dent. We haven't heard from the Ricoh GXR in a year. Canon mirrorless was a half-assed effort. Nikon has a small sensor with a body bigger than µ43. Fuji is doing alright because it has its niche, but they'll alienate everyone when they go fullframe and their current mount is too small for it. Pentax is WAY WAY late to that party. Not only is the market saturated, internally Pentax is overstretching itself with wierd products that appeals to nobody in particular.

MX-1 is a piece of junk, just another small sensor point and shoot that appeals to nobody but nostalgic pentaxians. And even then, they dissapoint! It's not by slapping the name of a legendary camera on a point and shoot that they're gonna fool this customer base.
03-04-2013, 05:04 PM   #1243
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QuoteOriginally posted by Spare Tire Quote
The market has no place for another mirrorless APS-c mount. Samsung has been going at it for years and they're not making a dent. We haven't heard from the Ricoh GXR in a year. Canon mirrorless was a half-assed effort. Nikon has a small sensor with a body bigger than µ43. Fuji is doing alright because it has its niche, but they'll alienate everyone when they go fullframe and their current mount is too small for it. Pentax is WAY WAY late to that party. Not only is the market saturated, internally Pentax is overstretching itself with wierd products that appeals to nobody in particular.

MX-1 is a piece of junk, just another small sensor point and shoot that appeals to nobody but nostalgic pentaxians. And even then, they dissapoint! It's not by slapping the name of a legendary camera on a point and shoot that they're gonna fool this customer base.
MX-1 has more than a "small sensor". It's a decent size sensor for relatively compact camera. Better than the epic fail of the Q. The camera could be a bit smaller and needs better AF and video. Other than that, it's solid. This is what many will step up to from a camera phone.

It may be OK to be late to party where everyone else is drunk. you said it yourself: Canon and Ninon mirrorless are not creating much buzz, and m43 has stalled. Fuji is pricey and niche and the company far too reliant on compact revenues which its hybrid RF series cannot price compete on.

APS-C still hits a sweet spot with sensor size as long as the lens and body prices fall down well below FF offerings. The whole compact-but-changable lenses does not seem to be working too well as the Nikon V/J line, M43, and the Pentax Q attest to. So compacts as compact and ILC as "bigger" may make more sense. If that is the case, APS-C is there.

And Samsung has brand issues in optical arenas. They cannot crack the dominant Japanese market, are not seen as a photographic company (Panasonic's problem their higher p the price ladder they go), and so on. At least the Pentax brand is tied to photography (which is why Ricoh is sticking to copiers).
03-05-2013, 01:02 AM   #1244
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QuoteOriginally posted by Spare Tire Quote
Not only is the market saturated, internally Pentax is overstretching itself with wierd products that appeals to nobody in particular.
Asia always seemed to be the market of focus for Pentax, so they may look strange for us but not so much for them.
With that thought i'm actually curious how big the FF market is in Japan for example.
03-05-2013, 01:43 AM   #1245
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
The whole compact-but-changable lenses does not seem to be working too well as the Nikon V/J line, M43, and the Pentax Q attest to. So compacts as compact and ILC as "bigger" may make more sense. If that is the case, APS-C is there.
That was to be expected. As soon as a camera isn't pocketable anymore it's going to need a camera bag. And for most people, a camera that needs a bag just isn't really a compact, or not compact enough. In that respect a compact ILC is a contradiction.
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