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03-19-2013, 04:04 AM   #46
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I am a recent convert from Nikon to Pentax and share my experience why they are not as appreciated as Nikon (I am still a D700 user) when searching for a replacement for D90.

Marketing - Pentax is very poor in the UK, no marketing campaign that I have seen or aware of, and in-store experience is not great either - the London distributor's shop is a disgrace.

Product Quality - Nikon HAD great products with real quality, up to and including D90/700/D4 hence we bought their products and paid the premium; some of us are locked in due to investment in lenses etc. NOT SO NOW, their QA is very poor aka D7100/D600/D800 negative press on dust, focusing. IMO, I like the quirky look of K30 and its quality is proven during my recent trip to OZ and Far East - it had to endure heat, humidity, cyclonic storms and rain forest conditions without fault and produced photos of great IQ.

Pricing - I don't mind paying a premium for a quality product and that's how we generally equate price with quality. I think people perceives (wrongly) Pentax price as an indication of its quality and won't try the brand.

Product range - not as extensive as the Nikon/Canon; same goes for third party products, e.g. GPS unit on ebay - none for Pentax! However, I don't need 90% of Nikon's lenses for my D700 so I am not worried by Pentax's offerings but others will perceive this as a weakness of the brand, they may be correct if they need it for their profession.

All in all, I can report that I am happy with the switch and hope Pentax will flourish in the future as I enjoyed using the K30.

03-19-2013, 04:24 AM   #47
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I think Pentax is also perceived by general consumers (that have heard of them) as a "photographers" camera...a bit "hardcore" and complex. People know Olympus, Sony, Canon & Nikon through their entry-level consumer products or other products (Printers , Hi-Fi etc). So, if you know nothing about cameras, you feel you "know" the Sony brand - they make Playstation, so they must know what they're doing, right?

There are several things that I really like about Pentax and the reason I bought into the brand when coming back to SLR photography in the digital age. A huge part of it was the in-camera shake-reduction system. This means lenses are cheaper, and ensures compatability with older lenses. When you think about it, this is a massive point - it means what you spend on a lens can be almost completely on the quality of the optics, and not duplicating a system that you've already bought in every other lens you have. It's really a question of philosophy, getting away from the throw-away culture we see in many sectors. It's hardly a surprise that the "big boys" who have the opposing philosophy will market against that, and say the "leaders" decision to do this shows its better. What it actually shows, of course, is that it's more profitable.

Maybe that does mean Pentax will never be at that end of the tree, but for me I'm happy to be part of a niche that follows this way.
03-19-2013, 04:52 AM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by elbeasto Quote
Why isn't Pentax more popular?
It's very popular, we just don't tell everyone, it's our wee secret, shhhhh.
03-19-2013, 05:37 AM   #49
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With the closure of Jessops here in the UK there is now only one camera shop in the city centre (Bradford) and it's a Pentax pro dealer... Despite the shop not having a website (I KNOW!!!) they're selling 3 to 4 new Pentax DSLRs a week (K-30 is their big draw) plus a healthy secondhand window and decent printing (where I suspect the make the most of their income)

03-24-2013, 03:30 PM   #50
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So received some of my ebay purchases over the past couple of days, and have been playing! My favourite so far is a Ricoh XR Rikenon 50mm f1.7...will get some reviews done and pictures uploaded when I get a chance...
03-26-2013, 11:11 PM   #51
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Marketing aside, there is also a supply chain gap with their retail channels. Speaking to a Salam Stores senior sales rep., he said they ask for higher quantities of certain lenses, but are only given smaller amounts. This is the only regional Middle East Distributor.

I don't know what kind of stocking relationships they maintain (or want to maintain) with their international partners. That's why I ended up buying a 40mm f/2.8 XS from Adorma via Amazon and a 18-135 WR from Pentax Singapore (e-offers), because its just so hard to find Pentax gear and we're in Dubai.

Certainly, Pentax having their own dedicated shelf at two of our major hyper markets here will boost it's brand recognition considerably, which Nikon does a lot (or at least their local partner does).

Last edited by incidentflux; 03-26-2013 at 11:18 PM.

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