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01-22-2014, 02:09 AM - 1 Like   #271
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Having browsed through all these FF threads.. there's quite a lot of thinking for Pentax to do, it seems

FF might be the right way, or maybe not. What price and size people might buy? There's the legacy K mount. And MF mount. Need for FF lenses and not hurting medium format sales. SLR might disappear, but not yet. But soon. I believe that almost all cameras will lose mirrors, but not just now. Battery life issues.. and EVF lag. And focus speed problems. But traditional SLR has the size and tolerance issues, metering and AF do not work as reliably as mirrorless, more like "thereabouts".. And the FF sensors still have a bit of corner sharpness and vignetting issues, if the mount distance is short. But soon maybe not anymore..?

I think Pentax does just right, when it waits. They should have done FF a long time ago, now is the wrong moment to hurry. A new direction should be very, very carefully thought out.

01-22-2014, 02:19 AM   #272
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QuoteOriginally posted by jaeaetee Quote
Having browsed through all these FF threads.. there's quite a lot of thinking for Pentax to do, it seems

FF might be the right way, or maybe not. What price and size people might buy? There's the legacy K mount. And MF mount. Need for FF lenses and not hurting medium format sales. SLR might disappear, but not yet. But soon. I believe that almost all cameras will lose mirrors, but not just now. Battery life issues.. and EVF lag. And focus speed problems. But traditional SLR has the size and tolerance issues, metering and AF do not work as reliably as mirrorless, more like "thereabouts".. And the FF sensors still have a bit of corner sharpness and vignetting issues, if the mount distance is short. But soon maybe not anymore..?

I think Pentax does just right, when it waits. They should have done FF a long time ago, now is the wrong moment to hurry. A new direction should be very, very carefully thought out.
A very reasonable analysis.

I also think the manufacturers will want to do away with SLR because the manufacturing costs and complexity is much greater than mirrorless. Much improved margins.

I also think that if the market shrinks much more you'll see direct online sales (as is direct from the manufacturer) taking over consumer marketing and distribution. I would say the re-sellers take a big load of profit and most don't have physical stores anymore in any case.
01-22-2014, 08:21 AM   #273
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parry Quote
A very reasonable analysis.

I also think the manufacturers will want to do away with SLR because the manufacturing costs and complexity is much greater than mirrorless. Much improved margins.

I also think that if the market shrinks much more you'll see direct online sales (as is direct from the manufacturer) taking over consumer marketing and distribution. I would say the re-sellers take a big load of profit and most don't have physical stores anymore in any case.
Manufacturers don't necessarily know how to market on the web. As evidence, look at the performance of the (contracted out) Pentax webstore.

Dealer margins are actually quite slim, which is why the large volume retailers who do market on the web are making it such a challenge for local Dealers to turn a profit and stay in business.
01-22-2014, 10:05 AM - 1 Like   #274
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Here are some rambling thoughts I have at the moment, I will probably disagree with them myself in a half an hour.

I do think that Pentax has tested all the right waters tech wise (though the FF is still just a set of prototypes) to jump in any direction the market may go and their current marketing style and small size could be polished up to be the best way to go in this difficult market.

Canikon basically has to sell so many units just to pay for its huge self and that's a burden that is collapsing their dealer network, especially with minimum dealer purchase contracts and the comically rapid release cycles they are running lately which devalue dealer stock almost immediately after they buy it.

My prediction for the future tech wise (or even the present in many cases) is that good camera phones will eliminate the current point and shoot market, and the falling price of mirrorless cameras with DSLR level sensors and technology will allow them to close that gap replacing current high end P&S and bridge cameras either as rugged fixed lens stuff like the WG series or mini stuff like the Q (not as likely) or full size mirrorless APSC bodies that use our current lenses to help pay for their development in a shrinking DSLR market.
Most people that purchase canon rebels from Walmart never take the kit lens off unless its to get a wider zoom range kit lens from Tamron like the 18-250.

I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the whole APSC section go mirrorless in that way, with full frame and medium format remaining true DSLR's since your average real photographer (including me who definitely isn't a pro) does a rather good job of freaking out if you take away something so fundamentally necessary to the way we shoot photos like a real view finder, and who are the people most likely to want the larger formats which are already drifting into crop body price range anyways.
If Pentax goes FF, because they have the advantage of the K mount being shared by their APSC bodies you will likely see all lenses become FF again just to keep the necessary lens count in the lineup down and save production. Basically give the FA line a tuneup and modernization (with WR) and only have one line of lenses for any full size interchangeable lens cameras (short of MF that is)

There was once a day when I wished I could afford one of those new fangled super expensive APSC dslr's instead of a point and shoot, I don't think its too much longer before the prices will be low enough that the price deterrent of FF (really the only reason not to get one now) will be gone except for the abnormally high dollar pro level stuff.

In all honesty seeing what they can offer the basic kit DSLR's for should show you how artificially overpriced the high end stuff is, there is not way a few features cost thousands of dollars per unit to add to a body and in most cases the better sensors are the same size and not very much better at all.
I would expect if the market shrinks much farther you will see the 14 dozen cameras that Canon and Nikon each sell cut down to about 6 (including both APSC and FF) from each with a slower release cycle to pay for the new tech better before its replaced, and with far less of an inflated profit margin to get people to bother buying them when upgrading is already unnecessary in most cases with current tech totally capable of doing the job.

One more thought, shops that are mainly brick and mortar are dead or almost dead and should just accept it, same thing in the scuba industry which also shrank a ton with the shitty economy. Places like B&H (or scubatoys.com for the scuba market) that have a store front and repair shop but are mainly a massive online operation capable of getting volume discounts are the only ones that will keep going. I would expect to see more locations open up for chains like that but it would be a one per state or several states sorta thing which is nearly where we are at now anyways.

01-22-2014, 10:05 AM   #275
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Here's the estimates for FF sales from posters...

A few days back, i asked what percentage of ILC sales would FF be at in January 2015 - 12 months from now.

These were the estimates:

phil (me): 15%

Clavius: 17%

mecrox: 12%

Rondec: 10%

northcoastgreg: 10.5%

The average of these 5 is 12.9%

I think that number is about right, in other words a slow increase in FF percentage numbers in the next 12 months.

In my more rural area, we don't have dedicated camera stores anymore, they've all died out. Seattle/Tacoma - the closest large cities, have a few camera shops, but fewer than i would have expected a few years back.

In my more limited area, the only ILC cameras i can find are in these big box stores: Costco, Best Buy and Staples. None of these big box stores in my area have FF cameras. Thats one of the reasons i think the above average estimate of 13% is about right. Its all online ordering of FF in my area, if one chooses to go that way.

Last edited by philbaum; 01-22-2014 at 10:22 AM.
01-22-2014, 10:11 AM   #276
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QuoteOriginally posted by PPPPPP42 Quote
I would expect to see more locations open up for chains like that but it would be a one per state or several states sorta thing which is nearly where we are at now anyways.
Factor in an eventual national sales tax on internet sales regardless of physical presence in a location. That could be the precipitating event that changes the B&H / Adorama model. They would then purchase whatever surviving B&M store or chain has a physical presence in large markets.

An example in St. Louis is Creve Couer Camera, which BTW stocks Pentax.
01-22-2014, 10:40 AM   #277
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QuoteOriginally posted by PPPPPP42 Quote
Here are some rambling thoughts I have at the moment, I will probably disagree with them myself in a half an hour.

One more thought, shops that are mainly brick and mortar are dead or almost dead and should just accept it, same thing in the scuba industry which also shrank a ton with the shitty economy. Places like B&H (or scubatoys.com for the scuba market) that have a store front and repair shop but are mainly a massive online operation capable of getting volume discounts are the only ones that will keep going. I would expect to see more locations open up for chains like that but it would be a one per state or several states sorta thing which is nearly where we are at now anyways.
This happened quickly in the UK. Jessops used to have a shop on every high street, collapsed, bought for a quid and is now just online retailing.

SRS, WEX, Bristol Cameras, Park Cameras and Clifton Cameras all have one shop each and these are the only sort of well known'ish retailers left in old Blighty. I've been to Clifton Cameras, it's a small shop but very good, WEX is quite an impressive showroom, SRS is a cracking place if you like Pentax.

One day I'm going to head into New York again and pop into B&H on 9th Avenue, although I've been told it's very dangerous if you want to maintain financial solvency.
01-22-2014, 11:16 AM   #278
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parry Quote
This happened quickly in the UK. Jessops used to have a shop on every high street, collapsed, bought for a quid and is now just online retailing.

SRS, WEX, Bristol Cameras, Park Cameras and Clifton Cameras all have one shop each and these are the only sort of well known'ish retailers left in old Blighty. I've been to Clifton Cameras, it's a small shop but very good, WEX is quite an impressive showroom, SRS is a cracking place if you like Pentax.

One day I'm going to head into New York again and pop into B&H on 9th Avenue, although I've been told it's very dangerous if you want to maintain financial solvency.
Park Cameras have recently opened a very nice shop (imho) in Rathbone Place in Central London. They stock Pentax cameras.

01-22-2014, 12:22 PM - 1 Like   #279
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Lack of institutional intertia = death

QuoteOriginally posted by jaeaetee Quote

I think Pentax does just right, when it waits. They should have done FF a long time ago, now is the wrong moment to hurry. A new direction should be very, very carefully thought out.
I've spoken before about a lack of institutional inertia, and how that can slowly kill a company. This ^^ attitude can be simultaneously one of the symptoms and causes of that.

"We need to proceed carefully" is often cover for "I do not want to make a decision, because it might be wrong, and then I'll be on the hook for it."

"We need to be careful and proceed slowly" is often almost impossible to overcome politically inside a company, because who can argue with that, right? You want to be careful, you don't want to rush into anything and cause the company to crash, correct?

This position is like a fortress inside some companies, almost impossible to lay siege to because it ensnares a cadre of C-level and right-below-C level execs who are afraid of making a mistake and are looking for the perfect excuse to not decide on strategy. "We have to be careful" gives them that excuse.

You don't get fired for "being careful" - but your company can die a slow death.

More companies fade away because of slow-footedness, lack of answer to disruption, over-caution and lack of innovation than as the result of a catastrophic product decision. The latter is often more visible, but the former happens much, much more often.

.

Last edited by jsherman999; 01-22-2014 at 12:29 PM.
01-22-2014, 12:37 PM - 1 Like   #280
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QuoteOriginally posted by bossa Quote
Apart from the cameras, the nature of the subject would obviously contribute to the overall "look" of the final output, and thus, commenting how much "better" a printed label looks from one camera than another, is a strange way to judge when the subject (label) isn't really like that in and of itself anyway.
Generally speaking, test subjects are not good way to determine which camera is "better." Test subjects often are of things no one would take a picture of in real life, in any case.

Since the 645D is really a camera for making large prints, the only real way to test it is to make prints from it. JPEGs on computer monitors of varying quality and calibration will only lead to useless, deceptive results. Have a high-end landscape photographer take, with each camera, the same shot of multiple subjects, make large prints with them, and compare the prints. While I doubt you'd be able to see much difference between the outputs of the two cameras, if you had people vote on which images they prefer, I suspect the 645D would win.

Someone on another forum shot a wedding with the 645D and a Nikon D800E, with shots devided evenly between the two cameras. The clients afterwards preferred by a wide margin the images from the 645D. It's practical output that always matters the most, not tests.
01-22-2014, 02:46 PM   #281
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QuoteOriginally posted by northcoastgreg Quote

Someone on another forum shot a wedding with the 645D and a Nikon D800E, with shots devided evenly between the two cameras. The clients afterwards preferred by a wide margin the images from the 645D. It's practical output that always matters the most, not tests.
Exactly right and it's the lens in combination with a sensor. FF crazed mob cannot understand it, but good MF optics render that special, unmistakable look, the micro contrast, the colour depth and quality of details in photographs.
01-22-2014, 03:04 PM   #282
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QuoteQuote:
Originally posted by northcoastgreg
Someone on another forum shot a wedding with the 645D and a Nikon D800E, with shots devided evenly between the two cameras. The clients afterwards preferred by a wide margin the images from the 645D. It's practical output that always matters the most, not tests.
It's amazing how people talk on both sides of their face. The same people that say you can't see the difference in a 1080p HDTV over a 4K UHD TV at normal viewing distance will say people will see the difference between a 40mp 645D and a 36mp FF even though the 1080p image is only 2mp and the 4K image is 4x larger at 8mp.

Last edited by jogiba; 01-22-2014 at 03:10 PM.
01-22-2014, 03:39 PM   #283
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QuoteOriginally posted by jogiba Quote
It's amazing how people talk on both sides of their face. The same people that say you can't see the difference in a 1080p HDTV over a 4K UHD TV at normal viewing distance will say people will see the difference between a 40mp 645D and a 36mp FF even though the 1080p image is only 2mp and the 4K image is 4x larger at 8mp.
I guess the folks who claim you can see a difference between APS-c and FF, but can't see a difference between FF and MF aren't the one's talking out both sides of their face? I guess who's talking out both sides of their face depends on what your bias is. How you can argue APS-c is different from FF but FF isn't different from MF... absolutely astounding. "Size of sensor matters when I say it does, but it doesn't when I say it doesn't." Honestly, no one can take you seriously when you do stuff like that.
01-22-2014, 03:40 PM   #284
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The issue is in the glass available for medium format, not in the sensor. End of story.
01-22-2014, 03:46 PM   #285
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
The issue is in the glass available for medium format, not in the sensor. End of story.

That, plus the strawman that there are people who say 'FF is great but 645 is no improvement'. No one actually says that.
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