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08-04-2011, 12:45 PM   #91
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I don't care if Pentax comes out with full frame, as long as they continue to invest in APS-C and produce strong offerings in that range. As long as I can buy two K5s for the price of one K1, the math is too easily skewed in the direction of the K5 from my standpoint to want a K1. Too many others are like me in this respect.

Everyone does there own math. Are the benefits of a given lens/camera body/other piece of equipment worth the cost and is there a cheaper way to get to the same goal? As the cost goes up above a thousand dollars, the math becomes easier for people. It may be great, but it won't be for them. This is why there are so many more rebels sold than 5D Mk IIs.

08-04-2011, 01:00 PM   #92
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Does anybody think Pentax already tried a Full frame sensor /s way back 2010 but Hoya does not want it? See link to a previous rumor 2009/2010
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08-04-2011, 01:02 PM - 5 Likes   #93
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Well, there it is, they've already sold their first.

08-04-2011, 01:23 PM   #94
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QuoteOriginally posted by filorp Quote
i get your point, but.... even if i bought my first dslr without even wondering about buying higher model, now the situation has changed.... and im shure it happend for many of us.... i have k5 and best pentax lenses in the market (in betw 3xFALimiteds) so whats next.... the answer is simple: nothing. 645 is very specific beast it has some advantages but it has some flaws even comparing to k5... like high iso shooting, so 645D isnt for me not for a while at least. What Pentax is doing to keep me along..... nothing. Marketing should create a desire to acquire new gear.... and it doesnt matter if you are a photo gear geek or pro shooter.... everything is about to create a desire.... to stay with and to buy new gadgets.... so logical conclusion should be FF sooner or later....
I disagree with you from both a personal point of view and also that of what I think Pentax needs to do. For the latter it is my opinion that it is much more important for Pentax to increase its base than to satisify the FF wants of a small portion of its base. Bigger customer base means more lenses sold means more lens models needed and new and older users gain. The buidling of a more expensive camera in order for some to use the lenses they already own is less benefical to the company. It may be important to you and I cannot agrue with you on that but I think not as much for the growth of the company.

Secondly I do not buy into the thinking that buying new gadgets and always needing to buy new ones is necessary or even beneficial. The problem you may end up facing is that if Pentax does build a FF camera and you do buy it what next other than the newest model every three years as FF models do not seem to change as often. As far as using a lens as it was meant to be I guess I got changed by using large format where I can use the same lens in 4X5 5X7 and Whole Plate. It has changed my thinking and now it I now longer think of the 35 as a mid wide on the digital it is the normal but when I switch to the film camera it goes back to being a mild wide. To me it is an easy mid shift. Just think on the plus side you are using only the sweet spot of your limiteds. You should thank Pentax for that

08-04-2011, 02:05 PM   #95
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QuoteQuote:
QuoteQuote:
We have a longstanding relationship with Sony. If the sensors for Nikon D3s, D3 and D700 are designed by Nikon, Nikon D3x and those of the small APS-C sensors are from Sony. We want to use our own sensors in SLRs most popular [small sensor APS-C, Ed], as the performance of our sensors are better. However, it will take some time as it takes to achieve economies of scale.
Translation:

Sony and Nikon cooperate where necessary against the common enemy: Canon. Sony benefits from Nikon design and Nikon benefits from volume guarantees and pricing and likely FF exclusivity.

Subtext:

We are restricting the FF club to those who add value. Pentax is a non-player as they bring neither volume nor chip fab know-how, so why would we want to compete against them and drive down margins? We don't. Talk to Kodak.
Translation reloaded: Nikon: We used to work closely with Sony, but their sensors really suck. Especially, we are pissed off by the fact that Sony offered Pentax the same sensor we use in the D7000 without any delay. This caused us much more trouble than giving a FF sensor to them. Although we are dependent on Sony for upcoming sensors, we do not believe that we are favoured anymore. Sony to Ricoh: Won`t you just buy some FF sensors from us? Nikon is giving us a serious headache. We already tried to sell the sensor of the D3x and the a900 to hoya, but they were to anxious.



Maybe google translate may offer even better solutions .
08-04-2011, 02:13 PM   #96
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
Leica doesn't sell 6K units a month (or even a quarter) of the M9. I'd be surprised if the yearly was even that to be honest.
A funny coincidence. A Leica representative mentioned just a few weeks ago in an interview that they have already sold the first >1500 camera batch of the ridiculously expensive M9-P which was released recently and are making a new similar batch.

Leica to launch new compact system in 2012 [update] - British Journal of Photography

QuoteQuote:
Leica also revealed that it has already sold more than 1500 M9-P cameras, which was announced yesterday. "We have another 1500 being produced now," says Schopf.
08-04-2011, 02:15 PM   #97
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QuoteOriginally posted by maxfield_photo Quote
Well, there it is, they've already sold their first.
lol

(So are you getting a 43ltd shipped with that body? 'Cause the K-1 is going to debut at around $2700. )


.
08-04-2011, 02:17 PM   #98
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Right, but our point was that people mention the 645D as an 'upgrade path' for the K-5 shooter, but it's really not an 'upgrade path' any more than the Nikon D3X or a Hassy for example would be. It's a different mount altogether, it just happens to carry the Pentax name.
Exactly!

08-04-2011, 03:59 PM   #99
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DingDangaDieDong one sold, so the project must get green light now.

Well it is al about expectations on sales for a certain price and requirements for production. When they come together, then there will be a green light on this camera. And this for a 3-4 years production.

I do expect a radar traditional DSLR in functionality and looks, competing with D800/5DMarkIII, with maybe some extra futures since there is no competition to an upscale second full frame model.

When a productionline between 2000-3000 units/month can be profitable and sold for that 3500 $ then I think we will see this camera next year (announced). I think Ricoh/Pentax has all that is needed on expertise (or ready to hire) to make it when there is a sensor availble.
08-04-2011, 06:29 PM   #100
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Tell you what, I'll sell all my FF pentax lenses, then I'm sure, knowing my luck, a Pentax FF will be released the very next day...
08-04-2011, 07:00 PM   #101
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Why would they need to?

From Sony's perspective, they increase their sensor sales volume by at least 5% (initially, to grow) with one single signature, and they then have Ricoh on board for FF sensors. They also may want to establish a stronger relationship with Ricoh to get an inside position to sell them the sensors for this high-res document archival push they're reportedly making and have the 645D tech pointed at right now.
5% extra sales at the cost of supplying a new competitor to the Alpha FF and pixxing off your main industrial customer is not reason enough.

Ricoh/Pentax would bring so little volume to the table at 5% market share for DSLR's and 5% of that 5% to FF within Pentax land. That pushes sub-2,000 FF units per month worldwide if Pentax has 4.45% of the 12.5 million DSLR/ILC unit sales from the 2010 IDC data.

How do you distribute that worldwide? You need MF margins to get that low a volume out. How and which dealers do you engage? International warranty and training support per unit would be astronomical.

QuoteQuote:
Their relationship with Nikon remains exactly the same. Any existing sensors that contain Nikon IP cannot be sold to anyone else, that goes without saying, but it's a huge leap from there to "Nikon controls who Sony can sell all FF sensors to."
Absolutely not. I use to see it all the time in the auto industry from suppliers like Magna. It's not just common; it's the norm.

I never said Nikon controls Sony. What I did say is that FF production is constrained by high prices and low demand, which feeds margins at the expense of volumes. To keep that equilibrium that last thing you want as Sony, already #3 in FF offerings, is to supply yet another competitor.

QuoteQuote:
How could there be definitive evidence if the body does not exist? There certainly is evidence that Pentaxians are buying 5Ds, D3s and D700's though, isn't there?
The biggest reason for Pentax to go FF sooner rather than later is to prevent defections from the brand. However, I think the majority of that damage is already over and done with.

QuoteQuote:
Again, you're speculating on two things here - how long it would take for ROI on a sub-3K body, and how long Ricoh would consider 'too long'.
At under 2,000 units per month in sales, less cannibalization from the K-5 APS-C series as many FF Pentaxians would forego a K-5or successor purchase?

The ROI would take 2-3x as long as Nikon. Ricoh can only get into FF if it expects to bleed red ink for many years rather than wait for the sensor market to move their way.

QuoteQuote:
Pentax-standalone was too small to do it without completely financing it. Hoya (it turns out) was just positioning Pentax imaging for a quick sale - they had no intention of investing and waiting for ROI. Pentax-Ricoh seems to be establishing itself for a long term revenue generation plan, probably leveraging emerging markets. A perfect incubator for a FF push.
Wrong. Flat out wrong. FF only generates revenues on high price unit sales and corresponding high price lens sales. This makes up for low volumes as a function of demand.

So for Ricoh to see ROI they would have to lose tens of millions of $$ trying to move a mere 2,000 FF units per month when Canon and Nikon are moving 15x that much at much higher profits because the pros are willing to pay the silly prices for a D3s.

If anything, Ricoh subsidizing FF sensor production via Sony helps Nikon as it is Pentax creating the economy f scale on its dime and not Nikon's. Meanwhile, Canon watches and laughs.

QuoteQuote:
No, they dropped the A850 because it was almost exactly the same as the A900, but sold for a lower price. They had bunched up their products there, in a confusing way. BTW, the A900, which they kept, is priced right at where I expect the K-1 to start.
And the A900 is not exactly a robust seller.

The Flickr Sony A900 Group Pool has 85 members and all Sony FF is at 785.

The Nikon D700 pool alone (and there are more than one) has over 10,000.

That difference in demand alone tells the story about Sony's FF plight and the cancellation of the A850. Sony's total FF sales are probably 2% of Nikon's.

Where would Pentax fit in? You think 5%. I say 0.25%

Hard to lock in FF sensor volumes with no market leverage. And we haven't even factored in competition from Canon.

With numbers like that it is easy to see why Sony has a special deal with Nikon. Nikon moves product and has a self-sustaining demand cycle. Nikon sells more Sony FF sensors than Sony can dream of selling through its own imaging department.

QuoteQuote:
Should they try to leap in at that point, or start building toward it now, with FF lens announcements, a FF body release schedule?
It's all about price. You cannot move the necessary volume of product at the current FF sensor prices. It's too high a barrier.

QuoteQuote:
I think what you're describing is simply what Ricoh is foreseeing.
I think Ricoh will take a good time evaluating their options because there is no pressing need to get into a market for $3,000 camera bodies to satisfy a bunch of people with 30 year-old glass and creating a Flickr group pool of under 200 people!

There were no FF camera models released new in 2010. That tells you something about demand, and that was all pre-earthquake.

QuoteQuote:
They don't have to sell by the bucketloads to make sense. In Pentax's case, it would strengthen K-mount, and help re-establish the brand, and develop a steady revenue stream after ROI schedule ends, something Ricoh seems to be interested in doing. Remember, the $124 million they spent for Pentax Imaging doesn't even make them break a sweat, Further investment toward that asset (which is K-mount) logically follows.
It doesn't strengthen k-mount to bleed red ink. The brand can more cost-effectively re-establish itself by taking care of QC and getting some brand focus. In 2 years it went from being the Subaru of DSLR brands to being the candy-coated bling of brands to being the sensor stain focus problem poster child brand. Before Ricoh bleeds red ink subsidizing a sub-2,000/month unit FF system they can realize far more shareholder value by shoring up the 95% of sales they currently cling to with it their overall 5% market share (under 2% for all cameras combined).

K-mount may struggle as mirrorless strictly curtails new growth. FF would only make that problem worse by trying accommodate both APS-C and FF lens developments and accessories etc. all from a slow to no-growth revenue stream (enter the new revenue stream hopeful, the Q). Ricoh's camera line is mostly dead or will be merged into Pentax, and the whole process will take 2 years. At that point, maybe, just maybe, FF sensor prices will have fallen enough to re-evaluate.

Every company sweats $124 million (unverified).

Last edited by Aristophanes; 08-04-2011 at 07:13 PM.
08-04-2011, 08:32 PM   #102
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote

I never said Nikon controls Sony. What I did say is that FF production is constrained by high prices and low demand, which feeds margins at the expense of volumes. To keep that equilibrium that last thing you want as Sony, already #3 in FF offerings, is to supply yet another competitor.
Sony Semiconductor is rumored to be looking for customers for it's sensors. If it has no problem supplying the volumous behemoth that is Nikon at the expense of Sony Imaging (A900,) why would Pentax's projected volume change that dynamic in any significant way?

A company like Sony wants to make strong ties with a company like Ricoh, usually does about anything they can to get in bed with someone like them. As you've pointed out, Canon is a big Sony/Nikon rival - Canon is also a bloody rival to Ricoh. Sony/Ricoh would make good bedfellows.

A Pentax FF body would expand the market a bit, and Sony can just dictate the price of that sensor, they don't become vulnerable all of a sudden to a new volume/margin dynamic that didn't already exist with Nikon.

I think the only way your argument really works is if Nikon has tied Sony's hands contractually on all FF sensor sales for a window of time that we're still in. That's possible, but unlikely.

Big thing to keep in mind here is that Pentax isn't walking through the playground unprotected anymore. Sony sees:

Nikon 2010 Revenue: $8.4B
Ricoh 2010 revenue: $23.4B

I suspect a Sony Semiconductor C-level exec will be able to write "Signed up Ricoh for FF" on his annual accomplishments report just in time for 2012 pre bonus review.


QuoteQuote:
The biggest reason for Pentax to go FF sooner rather than later is to prevent defections from the brand. However, I think the majority of that damage is already over and done with.
One of the biggest influx of new shooters we've had in years happened with the K-x, if you look at sales numbers. Still plenty of time to catch them before they pop off the top. Looks like there will be more behind them, also.


QuoteQuote:
At under 2,000 units per month in sales...The ROI would take 2-3x as long as Nikon. Ricoh can only get into FF if it expects to bleed red ink for many years rather than wait for the sensor market to move their way.
Well, going by those numbers, and a $500 profit per body (in line with D700 per-body profit according to TH,) a $50 million FF investment is completely in the black in 5 years, just body alone. That $50 mil will presumably include 3-4 lenses also, and those accellerate ROI even faster. In the years to follow, we would expect even more lenses.

That's exactly the kind of thing Ricoh is looking for. As I said, I doubt they bought Pentax to live inside the 18-month plan and look for a buyer, they bought it to help generate revenues in the decades to come to hedge against unkown things that will happen in the copier business. They're making other moves like that.




QuoteQuote:
There were no FF camera models released new in 2010. That tells you something about demand, and that was all pre-earthquake.
One thing it tells you is that demand remained very high for those circa-2008 bodies. In fact, it's very hard to even find a D700 these days in a lot of the world, they don't stay on the virtual shelves long anywhere.

Also, folks aren't dying to replace their $2K - $8K bodies every 18 months, it's a longer cycle. Our mutual friend TH has laid Nikon's schedule out nicely - no huge surprises in the timeframes so far.

QuoteQuote:
It doesn't strengthen k-mount to bleed red ink. The brand can more cost-effectively re-establish itself by taking care of QC and getting some brand focus. In 2 years it went from being the Subaru of DSLR brands to being the candy-coated bling of brands to being the sensor stain focus problem poster child brand. Before Ricoh bleeds red ink subsidizing a sub-2,000/month unit FF system they can realize far more shareholder value by shoring up the 95% of sales they currently cling to with it their overall 5% market share (under 2% for all cameras combined).
Because the investment happens largely in the same silo as aps-c, some of this would be covered by it. But agreed, QC issues like the kind seen by the K-5 hampering a new FF body would be disastrous. Bit unfair, but they have to actually be better than Nikon/Canon at QC, less margin for error in a way.


QuoteQuote:
Every company sweats $124 million (unverified).
They sweat it even more if that $124 million just dies on the vine from lack of significant follow-through.


.

Last edited by jsherman999; 08-04-2011 at 09:18 PM.
08-04-2011, 09:12 PM - 2 Likes   #103
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Well all you FF nay sayers, I've read your comments, and I find that you logic sadly applies to the 645D, as well as the K-5. We should just toss it all in now with the Q which is vastly less expensive, far more portable, and has a much smaller sensor.
08-04-2011, 09:43 PM   #104
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Sony Semiconductor is rumored to be looking for customers for it's sensors. If has no problem supplying the volumous behemoth that is Nikon at the expense of Sony Imaging (A900,) why would Pentax's projected volume change that dynamic in any significant way?
Sony is the largest sensor supplier in the world. It supplies much of Canon's P&S line.

Pentax changes no dynamic. The problem for Pentax is price. Nikon volumes mean a much lower price (say $650 per sensor) where Pentax's .25% of the volume would translate into a substantially higher price (maybe $1,200 per sensor).

The whole point of supply exclusives is to prevent a marginal competitor from breaking into your market on the coattails of your investments. Nikon's deal with Sony is likely structured that way.

QuoteQuote:
A company like Sony wants to make strong ties with a company like Ricoh, usually does about anything they can to get in bed with someone like them. As you've pointed out, Canon is a big Sony/Nikon rival - Canon is also a bloody rival to Ricoh. Sony/Ricoh would make good bedfellows.
Maybe, maybe not. The copier business is a sunset industry so fighting over corpses is not a way forward. It's not about these emotional allegiances; it's about volumes prices, and capital.

Sony will not pixx off Nikon to make market space for Pentax who is more likely to compete against the Sony Alpha line for non-Canikon customers in a stagnant to shrinking FF market. Sony has a great volume deal with Nikon, and Sony can keep the Alpha mount going on the side. With no FF competitor on the horizon, why sell to Pentax and muddy up the high margins by adding more competition? The FF market has room for two players and a dabbler, plus Leica. Olympus and Panasonic went the other way. Pentax has the Q (another Sony sensor).

QuoteQuote:
A Pentax FF body would expand the market a bit, and Sony can just dictate the price of that sensor, they don't become vulnerable all of a sudden to a new volume/margin dynamic that didn't already exist with Nikon.
A Pentax FF could also take APS-C sales away as people will buy either a Pentax APS-C or an FF model, but not both.

There is no evidence that a Pentax FF will lead to increased aggregate FF sales overall in the industry to Sony's advantage. If there is one brand a Pentax FF will harm, it is not Nikon, nor Canon, it's the Alpha.

The big myth in this argument for Pentax FF is that Sony makes sensors and then shops them around. Not so; certainly not with FF (nor Koda with their MF's for the 645D and Leica's M9). The customers and the suppliers work through the design from shop drawing stage to production, including shared credit and developmental overhead. This is how Thom Hogan and others have portrayed the Sony/Nikon FF design system. It's common in industrial design.

If Pentax wants that biz as well, they'd have to pony up some serious capital towards the same process, but with so little projected sales volumes, how does one pay a design team and keep the credit and overhead supply going at probably less than 20,000 units per year (and that's the good years of release; the last 2 years of the 5 year FF cycle see dismal sales; hence the D3s at over $6,000)$ The last 2 years of sales can easily see a 50% drop off.

If a Pentax FF body costs $20 million to design, manufacture, support, and produce, and the run is 5 years at 20k units per year gross sales, that's a $5,000 camera before profits.

I stand by my analysis that the next gen FF sensors from Sony are not available to Pentax until well after Nikon has their orders filled and the Alpha series gets their share. That makes Pentax able to source sensors until they are late into the long tail of production. Given the 3-5 year run of production for FF systems that means Pentax could not get a new FF sensor until 2013 at the earliest, and then the same sensor as Nikon, but 2 years too late to market. We are 3-5 years minimum before you'll see a Pentax FF announcement.

Volume. Price. Demand. That's what it all boils down to.

Last edited by Aristophanes; 08-04-2011 at 09:49 PM.
08-04-2011, 09:56 PM   #105
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Volume. Price. Demand. That's what it all boils down to.
According to the Hoya financials "Fact Book" - Pentax Imaging moves 23,000-26,000 "Units" a Quarter of "Stuff" in "Net sales" - this is everything - K-r's, K-5's, 645D's, Optios and Lenses .... Or about 100,000 units of everything per annum

I dont see a FF being 1/5th of total product moved by Pentax Imaging across all segments... But I'm ignorant and a n00b...

http://www.hoya.co.jp/english/investor/d0h4dj0000001g77-att/d0h4dj0000001hb6.pdf - Page 5 .
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