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03-07-2013, 08:23 PM   #1261
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Pentax needs to get the basic right.
1. Better focus.
2. Better flash system.
3. Bigger lense line up.

and ADVERTISE. Half the people don't even know about Pentax. It's not rocket science.

03-09-2013, 03:09 AM   #1262
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I would have thought that the one sure way to sell a FF camera against Nikon and Canon models was to make it CHEAPER!

Maybe by making it simpler - a cut down design built to a price.

It's too late in the day for Pentax to make an expensive FF camera - the pro and semi-pro shooters who use FF have already invested too much in Nikon and Canon.

But I'd buy a FF body that undercut existing models, and I'm sure others would. A lot of APS-C shooters want to make the switch and are simply put off by the present cost of bodies.

Quite the opposite idea to putting up prices, which Pentax in their wisdom have been doing.....

How about a FF body for under $1,000. Surely that can be done?

Going a step more creative, could a 3rd party Chinese company make a FF body for under $1,000 with a Pentax bayonet? There used to be several bodies with PK mounts back in the day. Might sell Pentax lenses.

Last edited by les24preludes; 03-09-2013 at 03:17 AM.
03-09-2013, 04:07 AM   #1263
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Summarizing your post, you'd only think of buying a K-mount FF body if it were a less than $1000 Chinese-made junk? And then, you'd probably go for a "better" second hand Canon or Nikon at about the same price, right?

Sorry, but that's not being creative; not even as a sure way to destroy the brand.
03-09-2013, 04:12 AM   #1264
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It's so depressing to see the phrase "Chinese made junk" in 2013 when China makes some of the best industrial products in the world. This is cold-war thinking. If you like substitute SIngapore, Taiwan or S.Korea.

What I'm saying is "less is more". A message seemingly lost on manufacturers leapfrogging over each other for the most arcane bag of new features to add to their products, many of which are rarely used in practice.

The attraction of full frame is primarily....... full frame itself.

I'd certainly buy a new full-frame body at $1,000 with a basic feature set and a decent sensor - 12Mp would do - rather than a used Canon or Nikon with a clapped-out shutter that would be a permanent risk to my investment.

What do you want? Prestige or sales? If you don't have sales you won't have prestige either.


Last edited by les24preludes; 03-09-2013 at 05:03 AM.
03-09-2013, 05:06 AM   #1265
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You know what is more depressing? To hear Pentaxians saying that a Pentax camera should cost less than half of what the competition is asking.
Besides, I never claimed the Chinese are only making junk; but the product you're asking for can't be anything good.

"Less is more", in this case, should be interpreted differently: getting less will cost you more. The production costs won't be lowered much by omitting standard features. What could you remove? LCD, and the ability to preview/review images, configure settings etc? A good viewfinder, putting instead a lousy pentamirror one? In-body SR? Try to find some very old, non-competitive sensors? (maybe Sony still have the ones that made the A900 famous ). Put the cheapest processor, and make the camera annoyingly slow? You will reduce the production cost a little, but the biggest reduction will be in the sales.
In the end, you'll get an expensive crippled camera nobody would buy. FFS, even Leica is including now a movie mode in their rangefinders...
03-09-2013, 05:28 AM   #1266
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Good points about crippling a body. I don't know the answer to production costs - I simply don't know what features cost in themselves. What I'm saying is that a lot of potential full-frame users are being priced out of the market and are using crop as a second best choice.

Could you produce a 12MP FF body with basic features for $1,000? I'd like to see somebody try, that's for sure.
03-09-2013, 06:04 AM   #1267
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This is the issue: what can be removed, without decreasing the sales too much? It's quite dangerous IMO, as people have different opinions about which is essential, which is optional (but desirable) and which is not needed. With a fully featured camera, people can simply chose to use what they want, and ignore everything "extra".

A rough guideline: removing what's standard even on cheap DSLRs won't save you much money. Autofocus (basic), back LCD, a decent interface can be had, together with a complete camera built around them, for much less than the $1100 difference you're asking for.

12MP FF, which sensor are you talking about? The Nikon D700 one? Why not buy the D700, then? It's much better than the imaginary "cut down design built to a price" camera (because it wasn't a cut down design).
How about lenses, should they also be less than half of the competition's?
03-09-2013, 06:05 AM   #1268
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QuoteOriginally posted by les24preludes Quote
I would have thought that the one sure way to sell a FF camera against Nikon and Canon models was to make it CHEAPER!
For Pentax's own sake I hope they never will take that route. Well, that is, more aggressively than they're already doing it with the K5 II, for example. That would be a sure route to business graveyard, eventually. A better approach would be the one Sony took, to make it different, la a99 and RX-1.

QuoteQuote:
Maybe by making it simpler - a cut down design built to a price.
What would be the point of a crippled design with a fancy sensor? The sensor is not the only thing that makes a good photograph. Making things simpler is often harder than making them complex, and thus often costs more. Furthermore, Pentax have already done one clever thing to improve the IQ of their top of the line APS-C body by removing the AA filter. You end up getting more resolution without a FF sensor.

Besides, price is not the only factor behind people's buying decisions. Case in point, the aforementioned Pentax K5 II. It's actually relatively cheap compared to other top of the line APS-C camera bodies. But the mainstream audience is still buying the more expensive Canikons and even Sonys.

QuoteQuote:
But I'd buy a FF body that undercut existing models, and I'm sure others would. A lot of APS-C shooters want to make the switch and are simply put off by the present cost of bodies.
The fact that you/we've got GAS and want to have a FF camera but can't afford one right now is not a feasible reason for Pentax to come up with one. I think a better approach would be to try getting along with what we have now, until we can afford the fanciest cameras. Until Pentax comes up with a FF model, I think the K5 IIs is a nice substitute.

QuoteQuote:
How about a FF body for under $1,000. Surely that can be done?
Well, given that no one, not even the eager copiers and undercutters from China have tried to do that yet might indicate that in reality it's not financially and/or technically feasible.

QuoteQuote:
What I'm saying is "less is more". A message seemingly lost on manufacturers leapfrogging over each other for the most arcane bag of new features to add to their products, many of which are rarely used in practice.
If you ever designed something by yourself or studied some fine, premium desings, you might notice that making things simpler and well at the same time is actually pretty hard. I don't know if it was Jony Ives or some other famous designer who said something like any fool can make a product more complex, you just slap on more features. But to make a product as simple as it can possibly be, that takes a lot of effort, and doesn't come cheap.
Just start saving for the FF body now, and you might be able to buy one when it finally comes, after a year or so. I'll be doing the same.

03-09-2013, 06:06 AM   #1269
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I wouldn't mind a simplified body, with fewer of the "features" of cameras we see today: I would wager not many people use a lot of them. All I want is a good picture-making machine, but I fear that bells and whistles look good in a marketing campaign.
03-09-2013, 06:14 AM   #1270
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Ah great! A fellow Welshman (-ish..)!

I'm thinking of something like a Mac Mini. This was brilliantly successful. Small form factor, basic features, but has all the processing power.

Or go back in time to the Praktica bodies for M42. Solid and practical and did the job. Still working today, a lot of them.

This is a business model which, in the right circumstances, has worked many times.

But Pentax won't do it because it requires coming out of the intellectual bunker they've dug themselves into.

Nikon could be the first to do it. Something like a new D700
03-09-2013, 06:20 AM   #1271
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Nikon's cheapest full frame camera was launched at $2100; and it's lower end than the D700.
03-09-2013, 06:21 AM   #1272
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QuoteOriginally posted by les24preludes Quote

I'd certainly buy a new full-frame body at $1,000 with a basic feature set and a decent sensor - 12Mp would do - rather than a used Canon or Nikon with a clapped-out shutter that would be a permanent risk to my investment.
Ask Nikon to do that, and listen carefully what will they tell you; but better ask from a safe distance.
They have just released an APS-C point and shoot fixed lens camera and asking $1150 for it.
if Nikon refuses such a privilege to be called an idiot company, why would Pentax be the one who does?
03-09-2013, 06:30 AM   #1273
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QuoteOriginally posted by les24preludes Quote
Ah great! A fellow Welshman (-ish..)!
No "ish" about it - I'm the real deal, albeit living in exile (though I still have my accent).
03-09-2013, 07:56 AM   #1274
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Ask Nikon to do that, and listen carefully what will they tell you; but better ask from a safe distance.
They have just released an APS-C point and shoot fixed lens camera and asking $1150 for it.
if Nikon refuses such a privilege to be called an idiot company, why would Pentax be the one who does?
It's idiotic to make a product that sells at a price consumers can afford?

The whole world seems obsessed with growth and technological progress. What I'm describing is partly a different way of thinking. Something similar to steady-state economics - just what you need and not more. Remember the subtext of the groundbreaking text "Small Is Beautiful: Economics As If People Mattered". As if people mattered.

Yes - of course I can see a review of a 12MP FF camera for $1,000. "It hasn't got this, it hasn't got that.....I'm surprised that when they can do this with the XXB%^& they can't do it with their entry level model....if only it had....".

None of this changes the situation that many people who WANT to use FF just CAN'T because of the prices of the bodies. The irony is that ALL of us used to shoot on full frame before digital bodies took over the market. We still have the lenses and the memories.
03-09-2013, 08:33 AM   #1275
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
I wouldn't mind a simplified body, with fewer of the "features" of cameras we see today: I would wager not many people use a lot of them. All I want is a good picture-making machine, but I fear that bells and whistles look good in a marketing campaign.
...and that's the key issue, isn't it. I wouldn't mind a simplified body, either, if it was indeed done the right way, by taking away all the unnecessary gimmickry, and leaving only the essentials. I bet no seasoned photographer wouldn't mind that.

But in most cases, the people who design the cameras don't have the last word about the end result. In these giant industrial complexes the products have to endure the handling of a bunch of easily intimidated marketing moguls, middle management, accountants and bureaucrats. That's why we're getting the blinking and beeping wonder gadgets we are getting, especially in the entry and mid range categories. The marketing moguls think those gimmicks add value, even though they add merely clutter. But unfortunately their strategy seems to be working, a big part of the mainstream audience apparently loves to have more and more 'stuff' in their new photographic gadgets.

Only in some rare cases things can sometimes be different. There are a few cameras from which people have stated that they are cameras clearly designed by photographers for photographers. They are usually the kind of "niche" models that are not even trying to please everyone.
One can see and even expect the kind of quirky but refreshingly gimmick-free models from the smaller manufacturers like Ricoh, Sigma, Fujifilm and to certain extent, Pentax. In the Sigma DSLR bodies, for example, the mode dial only have PASM on it, nothing else. In Fuji X-E1 the dial on the top has only shutter times and the letter A on it, like the good ol' SLR's of yesteryear. How cool is that?

But unfortunately cameras like that are rare, and their makers struggle to make ends meet, or to justify their existence inside a larger company. Despite discussions and wish lists like this one, only a handful of people are actually buying these gimmick-free tools, after all. Which often leads to those photographer-friendly models becoming rare oddities. For some strange reason most people go for the mainstream gimmicky gadgets, anyway, and apparently just try to tolerate all the point&shooty distractions. It's a bit ironic, isn't it.
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