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10-03-2014, 08:35 AM   #436
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
My biggest fear with the Pentax FF is that under Ricoh's guidance they decide to take on the big boys, and ditch their demographic. While it would be exciting to some, most of us who shoot pentax do so because we are in tune with their philosophy. If they become Canikon clones, well I could have switched to the Canikon model whenever I wanted. It wouldn't be any different than switching brands...
I agree with your first two paragraphs. I think your fear is unlikely to be realized any time soon. AFAIK Ricoh has said often they can be an alternative to the big two - different - but the won't compete head-on with them. Your statement in P. 1 and 2 summarizes the difference.

I interpret, "There is room for a third full-line camera company, and it will be Pentax," to mean Ricoh believes:
"Pentax releasing an FF doesn't make them competitors of Nikon or Canon. It makes them the producers of an FF body to go with the Pentax philosophy, small, lightweight, rugged and built for compromise lenses that are centre sharp and often edge soft, but extremely small, light weight and rugged. Pentax is going to make an FF to sell to the Pentax demographic, which is different from the Canon or Nikon demographic"
Of course fast zoom lenses (which many users here seem to want) must be larger and heavier, so there are limits to the small and light part of the design ethic.

10-03-2014, 08:43 AM   #437
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QuoteQuote:
Of course fast zoom lenses (which many users here seem to want) must be larger and heavier, so there are limits to the small and light part of the design ethic.
ya, what's with those people? Hopefully the coming F-DA 70-200 2.8 will give them what they want, and keep them happy.
10-03-2014, 08:48 AM   #438
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote

My biggest fear with the Pentax FF is that under Ricoh's guidance they decide to take on the big boys, and ditch their demographic. While it would be exciting to some, most of us who shoot pentax do so because we are in tune with their philosophy. If they become Canikon clones, well I could have switched to the Canikon model whenever I wanted. It wouldn't be any different than switching brands...
I (kinda) fear the same thing, but in a different way - I even think it's possible that they may foresee a MILC-only future that makes K-mount legacy-only, ie supported only through adapters and getting no further direct development. At that point it's almost a different brand, not much different from a shooters perspective than moving to a Sony.

Next 18 months may be the most interesting span of time in the digital era for Pentax either way.
10-03-2014, 08:57 AM   #439
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
I (kinda) fear the same thing, but in a different way - I even think it's possible that they may foresee a MILC-only future that makes K-mount legacy-only, ie supported only through adapters and getting no further direct development. At that point it's almost a different brand, not much different from a shooters perspective than moving to a Sony.

Next 18 months may be the most interesting span of time in the digital era for Pentax either way.
Right now, I think everyone in Pentax land is holding their breath.

The good thing about the current announcement for me right now, is, I can stop considering an A7r until I find out what they come out with. I was seriously thinking if I saw one for around for around $1500 on black friday, my DA35, FA 50.17 and Sigma 70 macro and Tamron 90 macro F-70-210 and A-400 would all work really nice with it. It would be like having 6 new lenses. $1500 for 6 new lenses, that's $250 a lens, that's cheap.
In my case I'd like a an A7r with a K-M mount, same mount as a k-mount but shorter registration for new lenses, but a straight pass through extender to use traditional K-mount lenses...with full AF and AE. Not that I know if that's even possible, but hey, smaller size, same functionality, what's not to like?


Last edited by normhead; 10-03-2014 at 09:19 AM.
10-03-2014, 09:29 AM   #440
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
I (kinda) fear the same thing, but in a different way - I even think it's possible that they may foresee a MILC-only future that makes K-mount legacy-only, ie supported only through adapters and getting no further direct development. At that point it's almost a different brand, not much different from a shooters perspective than moving to a Sony.

Next 18 months may be the most interesting span of time in the digital era for Pentax either way.
Just because Sony seems to be going there? I personally think K-mount has a lifespan about as long as the last babyboomer stay acquisitive unless the K-Sx line actually develops a new following. Unless things have really changed inside Ricoh Imaging in the last 18 months, Ricoh is committed to K-mount, Q and 645. Q was considered the growth engine (I know many people laugh at that). Given questions about the Q Tele-Macro (where is it?) what if Q-mount is on the hit list?

I rather suspect sometime in 2016 a really nasty-good Ricoh-branded Mirrorless ILC offering. 2016 would be LATE for a GR new model, too.

[EDIT:} I wonder if they could keep K-mount, make a thin MILC body and put all the lens-specific mechanicals in the lens? (Thin body, long lens). It could be similar to a new mount with an adapter, just not backward compatible.

Last edited by monochrome; 10-03-2014 at 11:41 AM.
10-03-2014, 09:38 AM   #441
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
ya, what's with those people? Hopefully the coming F-DA 70-200 2.8 will give them what they want, and keep them happy.
I'll be perfectly happy with Limited-spec f/4 constant zooms. The younger guys can tote the honking */2.8's
10-03-2014, 09:57 AM   #442
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Just because Sony seems to be going there?
Sony, Panasonic, Fuji, Olympus, Samsung. I don't think we can't really compete in MILC with the K register distance as it is. Few will buy a bulkier, thicker MILC if there are svelte alternatives at the same price. And if Ricoh sees MILC as the only growth market... K-mount looks legacy.

So they seem to have have these options:

1) stay the course with aps-c DSLR, try to develop Q or son-of-Q, hope K stays relevant doing this
2) Go all-in with MILC, with a new mount and offer an AF adapter for K. At some point offer FF MILC using this same new mount.
3) Offer FF K-mount DSLR, with new lenses to keep K-mount vital.
4) Some combination of 1,2 and 3.

My fear stems from the possibility that Ricoh might see option #2 alone as the best/cheapest path forward.... and just keep aps-c DSLR for a while as a revenue source while they prepare to make the switch.

.
10-03-2014, 10:07 AM   #443
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
The Pentax advantage is that so many of us were 35x24 shooters for years. To this day some of my favourite images were taken on 35x24 cameras, and some of them wouldn't be the same shot in APS-c. Even for folks like me who are essentially sitting on the fence, and feel we can get along without FF want to see what they come out with. There is probably more latent understanding of FF in the Pentax community than anywhere else just because, we don't have one, and because we grew up with it. I expect when Pentax releases their first FF, the results will surprise some. And there are a lot of us who wouldn't say we'll buy one, who will if what is offered suits us.

As Jay points out, the Canikon market is sewed up. If I'm my buddy Brian with his D800 and 14-24, 24-70 and 70-200, and Pentax comes out with an FF, why would i care? Or If I'm a sports shooter with my long lens with built in 2x converter available at the flip of a switch. Pentax releasing an FF doesn't make them competitors of Nikon or Canon. It makes them the producers of an FF body to go with the Pentax philosophy, small, lightweight, rugged and built for compromise lenses that are centre sharp and often edge soft, but extremely small, light weight and rugged. Pentax is going to make an FF to sell to the Pentax demographic, which is different from the Canon or Nikon demographic. If at some point they decide to compete with the big boys, they have some serious work to do.

My biggest fear with the Pentax FF is that under Ricoh's guidance they decide to take on the big boys, and ditch their demographic. While it would be exciting to some, most of us who shoot pentax do so because we are in tune with their philosophy. If they become Canikon clones, well I could have switched to the Canikon model whenever I wanted. It wouldn't be any different than switching brands...
I don't think there is much risk of their becoming Canikon drones. There's more risk of their following in the footsteps of Leica, to judge from the recent interview with the head of the imaging division. He seemed pretty keen on taking things up, up and away. I say risk because while that could result in fab equipment and one hopes it would, that path too is some way from where Pentax has always trod.

10-03-2014, 11:19 AM   #444
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Sony, Panasonic, Fuji, Olympus, Samsung. I don't think we can't really compete in MILC with the K register distance as it is. Few will buy a bulkier, thicker MILC if there are svelte alternatives at the same price. And if Ricoh sees MILC as the only growth market... K-mount looks legacy.

So they seem to have have these options:

1) stay the course with aps-c DSLR, try to develop Q or son-of-Q, hope K stays relevant doing this
2) Go all-in with MILC, with a new mount and offer an AF adapter for K. At some point offer FF MILC using this same new mount.
3) Offer FF K-mount DSLR, with new lenses to keep K-mount vital.
4) Some combination of 1,2 and 3.

My fear stems from the possibility that Ricoh might see option #2 alone as the best/cheapest path forward.... and just keep aps-c DSLR for a while as a revenue source while they prepare to make the switch.

.
They'd throw away a number of patents, I imagine - and what did they really buy other than the patents? Cebu? Goodwill was, if anything, negative.

I'm not going to spend a lot of time worrying about it. I'll be dead before the K-mount.
10-03-2014, 12:31 PM   #445
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Is this the new camera prototype?

QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Sony, Panasonic, Fuji, Olympus, Samsung. I don't think we can't really compete in MILC with the K register distance as it is. Few will buy a bulkier, thicker MILC if there are svelte alternatives at the same price. And if Ricoh sees MILC as the only growth market... K-mount looks legacy.

So they seem to have have these options:

1) stay the course with aps-c DSLR, try to develop Q or son-of-Q, hope K stays relevant doing this
2) Go all-in with MILC, with a new mount and offer an AF adapter for K. At some point offer FF MILC using this same new mount.
3) Offer FF K-mount DSLR, with new lenses to keep K-mount vital.
4) Some combination of 1,2 and 3.

My fear stems from the possibility that Ricoh might see option #2 alone as the best/cheapest path forward.... and just keep aps-c DSLR for a while as a revenue source while they prepare to make the switch.

.
The picture represents to me - how quickly the photographic world is changing - to repeat an old quote:

" The rate of change has never been this rapid before; And will never be this slow again."

[IMG][/IMG]

The image of course is Sony's KW1 with its 180 degree capable camera for one's pocket or purse i suppose. 20 mp or thereabouts.

Been reading the dpreview analysis of the Photokina Show, and it reports that both Canon and perhaps Nikon are developing or considering mirrorless for large sensors. I suggest one reading this interesting article:

Photokina 2014: Quiet but significant: Digital Photography Review

In one development after another, the electronics companies appear to be leading the way and Canon, Nikon and Pentax are all trying to catch up. The collapsing compact market does not appear to be a singular aberration, but the start of a changing marketplace.

Sitting in a seaside restaurant yesterday, i watched through a window as someone launched their platform drone and flew it over the water and back again for an extended period. Don't know if he had a gopro type video on it, but they are certainly capable of it - having talked to a salesman about it a few months back.

Much to my own disgust, my most frequently carried camera today is an android Galaxy smartphone.

The marketplace is changing so rapidly, i think a Ricoh FF K-mount is a bad idea, some combination of 1 and 2 are the best i could hope for. Even this discussion seems a bit dated.
10-03-2014, 12:42 PM   #446
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Those of us who buy Pentax for it's size wouldn't buy it that's who. And trust me, there are a lot of us. We wouldn't run for it, we'd run from it. I like the size of my ME, which is full frame. Add 10mm for SR.. and it's the size of my K-5.

Some of us suspect the size of 1Ds etc have more to do with the need to impress your rich uncle than any photographic necessity.


Yeah most of us, i blah..., 2-3cm bigger is that really a problem?

don't get me wrong, i also would like to have it all fit into the body of the K-5II.
But thinking about electric radiation and active shielding of the sensor the SR mechanism display, one or even 2 CPU's(Canon utilizes 2 CPU's to gain higher framerates, when shooting in RAW) - CPU's heat up... etc.
The size of the k-5 just wont do the trick. And be honest, hadn't you had a 645D or Z in your hands? It just handles and feels like the K-5II. So handling and the ease of the PENTAX feeling is a no-brainer for RICOH on MF why should they have a problem to transport that feeling to an only slightly bigger FF body?

Don't be so nitpicky...

I thought "our" philosophy behind beeing fond of the pentax brand, was or is purposeful thinking?

Function follows Design ... Isn't that what Canikon does?
Why would a pentaxian want to have it also that way?

But if you are serious about the illusion that a FF DSLR with SR, could be as small as a K-3 or K-5, then start a poll...

If "our" philosophy is that Design follows Function and not vice versa, should one not say thank you to PENTAX(RICOH) when it delivers a top notch FF, even if it is 2 or 3cm bigger???
Instead of stating things like: "Oh god our design!!! No, bad PENTAX! Don't make it bigger so heat can go off easily..." And when the money-fairy comes home to you, you "don't-make-it-bigger-people" go and buy yourself a Mid-Format cam with a whole lenspark... where even a wide angle lens is nearly as big as a 70-200 standard-slr kit lens.

And one more thing. It was not about some Brian with a d800... It was more about Professional Photographers who use PENTAX. And most of them are Candidates for a Nikon. I recently had a phone talk with a pro from northern germany... (I bought his old tamron for spare parts..) And he said, that he would love to stick with the PENTAX, but if he doesn't see a FF body coming, he may switch to NIKON.
And i really have to say it now:
"Der Hut brennt!"
"the hat is burning" that is a german sprichwort, that says it is time to hurry up and get things going.

So go, get some water, hope for weather resistancy and don't care about 2 or 3cm...

and BTW i have to admit:

PENTAX IS DOOMED!!!



---------- Post added 10-03-14 at 12:49 PM ----------

If I want to buy a sweety toycam, i would buy the RICOH THETA!!!

And about people who are. thinking that something is a bad idea... Keep it to your self.

AGAIN:

It is about:

What could be different about PENTAX FF?

It is not about what my son played with yesterday.
10-03-2014, 12:54 PM   #447
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Although I prefer a DSLR right now, MILC is the way the market is heading. Since Pentax seems to be lagging in AF it's not like there's as much to give up with Pentax going MILC as other brands.

Pentax's DNA includes the best picture from the smallest package... if they don't do a good MILC they will lose that battle.
10-03-2014, 01:07 PM   #448
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QuoteOriginally posted by ElJamoquio Quote
if they don't do a good MILC they will lose that battle.
I think we see an emerging philosophy from Ricoh - they would rather wait a cycle to do it right than do a half-effort just to be in the game. I suspect we'll see many K-3 / 645Z type excellent products from Ricoh in coming cycles. If a FF appears soon I wouldn't be surprised to see significant improvement in AF and/or flash sync. I wouldn't be surprised to see the next big surprise be a Ricoh-branded MILC.

I just refuse to believe these guys are benighted - I choose to believe they've been working behind the scenes before the actors could take the stage.

Last edited by monochrome; 10-03-2014 at 01:42 PM.
10-03-2014, 01:44 PM   #449
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I think we see an emerging philosophy from Ricoh - they would rather wait a cycle to do it right than do a half-effort just to be in the game. I suspect we'll see many K-3 / 645Z type excellent products from Ricoh in coming cycles. If a FF appears soon I wouldn't be surprised to see significant improvement in AF and/or flash sync. I wouldn't be surprised to see the next big surprise be a Ricoh-branded MILC.

I just refuse to believe these guys are benighted - I choose to believe they've been working behind the scenes before the actors could take the stage.
This would surprice me. Unless there is a chance to join a mount from one of the others. A new mount with everything new, I don't see that coming.
10-03-2014, 05:50 PM   #450
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
In aps-c it's closer to 10:1, and in that space the POS** and marketing advantage (ie, everyone swayed by what they see on the shelf at Target and what Ashton Kutcher etc are seen shooting in commercials) to buy is more effective than it would be 1 tier up. So we shouldn't expect any less than aps-c's 10:1 ratio, and probably better.

Keep in mind: The same economies of scale differences are in affect in aps-c, and Pentax is still profitable there while able to offer product at similar prices. And if the recent comments from Pentax-Europe reps are accurate, they don't see enough of an economy-of-scale barrier to stop full development of FF (unless they're completely lying )

In other words, they wouldn't waste any significant $ developing something if they knew economies of scale and sales ratios would make it non-feasible anyway.

Also, don't look for the majority of K-FF buyers in the CaNikon 'switch' camp - they will probably mostly be coming from manufacturers that don't currently offer a FF upgrade path, like Panasonic, Olympus, Fuji, Samsung, and Pentax. The few 'current-FF switchers' who do come from CaNikon will probably come when it's upgrade time for their camera, they were dissatisfied with their current camera or Pentax has some feature they love, and if then only if they don't already have a huge (to them) investment in lenses.

** it occurs to me that this acronym can have two meanings in context here, as in "The Canon POS being sold at the POS."
.
That is very, very optimistic. The APS-C market is in general a bigger one, thus even though Pentax is maybe 1:10 smaller that is still a lot of cameras. The FF segment though is a lot smaller though, thus being 1:10 or even 1:5 may not be big enough. And usually people who are in the market for FF already have many lenses (and the more lenses you have, the less likely you're to switch brand, no matter how tempting (and a Pentax FF that is as many want here is simply not tempting enough). Also, in the FF segment you're often aiming for professional users, and professional users are more and more forced into doing stills AND video if they want to stay in business. Video is an area Pentax is particularly bad at, and which they seem to have no intention on improving. The only one who is as uninterested in improving their video functionality is Canon, and that's because they can afford to do so, and don't want to hurt the sales of their big cinema cameras.


If you're a Panasonic, Fuji, or Olympus shooter, you probably value size a lot, and you're used to mirrorless cameras. Unless they really don't like mirrorless, why would they want to switch back to a mirror? There's a reason why they went mirrorless. Also, why wouldn't they buy a Sony A7, if they want FF? They can remain mirrorless, and get a compact body with a large sensor. A friend of mine went from APS-C Nikon to Panasonic mFT, and he could not be happier. There's no way he would ever switch to a FF DSLR.


Also, if you're a Panasonic shooter, you're probably into video. Which, again, means Pentax is not of any interest.


What are the traditional strengths of a Pentax? Size, weather resistance, usability, build quality, size of the viewfinder for it's price class, SR. If they are to compete with other FF DSLRs (namely Canon and Nikon):
Size and weight... how much smaller can they make it? Can they get smaller and lighter than their competitors without sacrificing SR? Nikon is using carbon fibre these days, can Pentax? If not, are they able to compete?
Weather resistance... in the FF segment not too uncommon.
Build quality... FF DSLRs are tanks. Pentax might compete, but be significantly better?
Size of the viewfinder for the price class... well, it's big in a FF camera. How much bigger could they make it? Would it be of an advantage? Keep in mind that FF cameras aren't meant to save every single cent, they get good viewfinders, unlike entry level Canikons. Canikon does have good APS-C viewfinders in their top of the line APS-C cameras, and they can IIRC compete with what Pentax has to offer (Pentax only shines compared to entry level cameras from the other brands!).
Usability... plenty of professional users get along just fine with a Canikon. Pentax may be easier to learn, but I'm afraid that might not be such a big draw to lifetime Canikon users who know how their cameras are used.
SR... can they do it, without sacrificing size? A bigger sensor also means more mass, meaning moving the sensor around will be harder. Also, without SR in video to me SR is a drawback. I'd rather have a Nikon without SR than a Pentax with SR, if I can't use the built in SR in video (at least with Nikon I can use stabilized lenses).


So it seems questionable if Pentax can even better those brands by a reasonable margin, and then Canon has Magic Lantern, which gives good video quality and features if needed, and Nikon's new cameras (D5300, D750 and D810) produce pretty great quality video, as long as you're willing to live without 4K. Pentax is nowhere even close to that. So even if we assume that Panasonic etc. users want to switch to a FF DSLR, why on earth would they pick a Pentax?! Unless they are a bunch of hipsters and want a camera that no one else has.


The idea of a Pentax FF camera being squarely aimed at Pentax enthusiasts seems like a bad idea to me. Star Trek 2009 needed to appeal to a wider audience than just Star Trek fans (though numberous they are) to make financial sense. Likewise, the Pentax user base is pretty small, and a small portion of that has interest in a FF Pentax. A part that makes a Pentax a Pentax (at least for me) also means it can never be a FF camera, at least as long as it has a mirror. And without mirror I just don't think Pentax has the experience and knowledge and technology to make it really competitive.


I doubt Pentax will go all in with MILC. They have shown no sign whatsoever that they are interested in doing so. The K-01 was hindered by that K-mount (too conservative thinking on Pentax' side), the Q is not a serious competitor in the MILC market. And there was a time to enter the MILC market, and IMHO that might already have passed. I doubt Pentax is technically able to compete with Panasonic, Sony, Samsung and perhaps Olympus. Panasonic, Sony and Samsung are really good at doing video, and Olympus is trying hard if the rumors are true (Olympus cameras in the hands of Hollywood filmmakers to test and give feedback on Olympus cameras, obviously in an attempt to cater to the filmmaking community. In contrast Pentax has again and again shown that they have no clue about filmmakers, even when they try to cater to that audience (why else would the K-3 have an headphone out?)). Sony and Samsung are also producing sensors, and supply brands like Pentax. However they will also keep the latest and greatest to themselves if they think that benefits them... Sony has already said that the A7S sensor stays with them for now, and I expect Samsung to do the same with the NX-1 sensor. So Sony and Samsung will stay a step ahead of Pentax (unless Toshiba is able to release something competitive). Keep in mind that both Sony and Samsung are also big in the smartphone camera module business, and I wouldn't be surprised if they gain a lot of high tech know how through that. BSI for example is a technology first developed for smartphone cameras, and it's now slowly coming to larger sensors. Toshiba, i think, is not so big in that market... or at least it doesn't seem to supply the modules that high end phones use.



Pentax has also time and time again shown they don't understand video, they don't know how people use video or that they want/are forced to use it. Pentax employees seem to be photographers, which explains why their cameras are so great to use for photography, but no one there seems to shoot videos, at least not at a professional level. It is as if they think people who want to use video on their DSLR want to replace their super convenient camcorder that does everything automatically, without much control from the user over the picture. The last interview Adam did with Pentax is very telling: The K-3 has a headphone out, which is a pretty nice feature giving you the chance to monitor the audio. People who do so would probably use an external microphone, because any built in one is useless. Yet Pentax says SR is deactivated during video because of the noise the SR system makes... but you only hear that through the internal microphone, which no one who cares about good sound quality would even consider using, and if you don't care about sound quality, you wouldn't notice or care anyway. Instead they offer electronic SR, which has the disadvantage of absolutely destroying the video. It makes the videos look awful, and anyone at Pentax should have noticed, had they tried it even once. If the camera would release an image this bad in stills mode (say for example vertical lines don't stay straight when you shoot a photo, they wobble left and right), Pentax would have done everything to fight that, because they had noticed it and found it unacceptable. They would have removed the feature causing this. Nikon also has full access to the electronic stabilization Pentax has, they could flick a switch in their software and have electronic SR. It's in the processor. But they don't use it. Tried it, I guess, laughed, shook their heads and deactivated it again.

--> I think Pentax is kind of doomed. They can't compete in the FF market, because I really doubt they can release a product that would attract a big enough number of buyers. It would need to be a significantly better product than anything Canikon can offer to make up for disadvantages like lens lineup, and I doubt they can even release something that is better than a D750 for example. They can't compete with the top of the line MILC cameras from other brands, because technically they are lightyears ahead of Pentax, and they are also the suppliers Pentax depends on, so they can keep Pentax at a distance. APS-C will shrink, as MILC cameras get better and better. I don't see any reason apart from lens lineup to buy any APS-C camera over a Samsung NX-1, provided that the NX-1 can deliver on it's promise and is easy to use (I have my doubts, unfortunately). A decent part of the problem is that they don't understand video, nor show any intention in doing much to improve it/understand how people use it.


This is a pretty good video. While it addresses Canon and Nikon it IMHO also can be applied to Pentax, which is mostly following Canon and Nikon with a slight twist. It also comes from a camera store that knows what people going into the store actually want.

Last edited by kadajawi; 10-03-2014 at 06:53 PM.
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