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Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 21 Hours Ago  
Is this describing what the accelerator unit does?
Posted By JPT
Replies: 13
Views: 558
This Thursday an image processing patent appeared from Ricoh Imaging that I think may be describing what the accelerator unit is doing. Looking at Ricoh patents, they tend to appear after the product is on the market, rather than before (such as the recent DFA* 50mm f1.4 patent). That’s why Ricoh needs to be a bit tight-lipped about how these new functions work.

I will admit that I don’t understand as much about the technology of cameras as others on this forum, so I’d be interested to hear what you think about this one. If I am right, quite a lot of the assumptions about the accelerator being plain old “baked” RAW would be incorrect.

The accelerator is currently in the K-70, the KP, The K-1 II and the GR III. All of these display excellent noise characteristics, retaining a lot of detail and accurate color at the high end of the scale. To see this, you can use the DPR comparison tool to compare pair of cameras thought to have the same sensor. I used the KP vs. the Nikon D7200 and the K-1 II vs. the Nikon D810.

Here is the link to the patent.
??6572524 | ???????IP Force?

Through Google translate
Google Translate

What it seems to describe is a system where the camera stores information gathered about the specific sensor installed in the camera. The pattern of dark current for that sensor, which is responsible for a lot of the noise, is known to the processor, so that makes it possible to correct for it more accurately than generic noise reduction applied after the fact.

If I’m right about this, and it is indeed describing what the accelerator does, it has a few implications for the way the accelerator has been described so far.
- The accelerator is not doing noise “reduction” as much as noise “correction”
- Denoising software on your computer could not possibly apply the same technique because it doesn’t “know” what the accelerator unit knows about the specific sensor in your unit
- The processor must be closely integrated with the sensor, meaning that what Takashi Arai (of Ricoh) has said about it being difficult to implement an on/off switch its probably true

In the “Challengers” section of the K-1 Special Site, the following sentence appears, which seems quite interesting in the light of this patent. From Challengers | PENTAX K-1 Special site | RICOH IMAGING

“Since the noise was identified more precisely than previously, it could be detected more clearly.”

Not a great sentence - the two clauses seem to duplicate each other. It probably made more sense when they said it in Japanese. However, it seems to be quite consistent with what the patent describes.

Looking at it more from a user point of view, I have not heard many people who actually bought the cameras complaining about the effects of the accelerator. On the other hand, the people who rejected it mainly seemed to be doing so on the basis that in-camera RAW noise reduction is bad in principle, rather than observing any ill-effects from the accelerator in the images.

Don’t just take my word for it. Someone with better scientific knowledge than me should be able to say with more authority than me. But I do think it seems quite a plausible explanation for why Ricoh implemented the accelerator in the way they did. It always seemed out of character for Ricoh or Pentax to use regular noise reduction a selling point.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 2 Days Ago  
Sigma stops K-Mount support
Posted By JPT
Replies: 126
Views: 7,235
You’ll find that a huge number of Japanese companies state their capitalization at exactly 100,000,000 yen. One yen more and they’ll trigger a higher rate of tax on a portion of their income. So Sigma is way bigger than that 1m dollar figure would indicate.

They can afford to make loss making products and live to tell the tale. Pretty much their whole camera and sensor business is testament to that. But I don’t think they have much sentimental attachment to Pentax, so there’s no reason to persist with loss making products in K-mount.

However, I don’t see why this attracting so much attention at this moment. It has been pretty obvious what is happening for years now. Pentax was never the best choice of mount if you wanted to use Sigma anyway.

Despite all the predictions that Pentax is dying, K-mount is the only DSLR mount that looks fully alive. SA mount is officially finished. A-mount was effectively done some time ago. Nikon and Canon DSLR are being superseded by mirrorless mounts targeting the same users and price points. I think you’d have to be naive to think they’ll keep making DSLRs any longer than they have to.

K-mount on the other hand has a future roadmap and public plans for at least one new high end camera. They’ve made statements about their commitment to DSLRs. The company itself is not in financial difficulty.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 3 Days Ago  
Who is gonna buy KP-J ?
Posted By JPT
Replies: 20
Views: 1,464
Karen - I think your image is up on the Ricoh Facebook page now. Congratulations. It’s a nice shot.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 4 Days Ago  
Theta Z1 in stock
Posted By JPT
Replies: 14
Views: 622
This Imaging Resource interview is interesting about the market for Theta. It seems like a large part of the market is to business. The part about Theta is about 2/3 of the page down.

Medium-format DSLRs are coming, and mirrorless converts will return! Ricoh Q&A from CP+

My theory is that the on/off availability of Theta Z1 is because they are fulfilling some big orders from corporate customers. Imagine if Google decide they need a few thousand units for mapping. They are going to get priority, which might disrupt supply to camera stores.

For what it's worth, it has been in the stores here in Japan since the end of May. I don't know whether there would be a waiting list if you tried to bu it though. The display units are very cool. It's magnesium build feels strong and dense like a K-1, but obviously it's not rugged with those lenses sticking out. It just feels solid and quality.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 09-05-2019, 04:00 PM  
New Sony APS-C Sensor - 26MP
Posted By JPT
Replies: 1,132
Views: 74,430
Chris Mac - The KP is an additional mid-range model and the K-3 successor is going to be poisoned higher. You like to portray this as a mistake, but the KP seems to have been the most popular Pentax DSLR the whole time since it’s release in Japan. The K-3 II on the other hand was always considered a bit of a dud while it was on sale. It’s only since it was discontinued that people have got misty-eyed about it. The fact is that to make a competitive top class APS-C camera in 2019 they need to do a lot better than the K-3 II and that is going to need to be a more expensive model. That’s why the lines had to be split.

Ron - What is coming next year is not a KP-derived camera. It’s a camera that “keeps concept” of the K-5/K-3 cameras, but is all new inside and positioned as a top class APS-C camera. It has a new sensor and engine at least. It is around the same size as the K-3, but not exactly. It does not have a permanently attached dual-grip design. This was said by the person leading the project (Shigeru Wakashiro) at CP+.

Clackers - The comments about timing have been deliberately vague. What Wakashiro-San said at CP+ was “not for a while” and when suggested that it might be as late as Xmas 2020, he said “it won’t be that long”. Reminder: Don’t over analyze the specific words I use to paraphrase Japanese from memory. Kimio Tanaka definitely has enough connection to Ricoh to know what’s coming. He appears at their events, he writes a regular column in their magazine and he has had access to unreleased products in the past. He also likes to prod Pentax about always being delayed. His latest comment was that it will be out in the second half of next year, but it’s not clear if he means in stores or announced. It’s possible it will be shown during spring with delivery some months later.

reh321 - I don’t think anyone said specifically the K-3 successor would the next model to be released (i.e. that no other camera will be released in the interim). The Ricoh representatives only talk about future cameras when asked about them, and they were only really asked about the K-3 successor. It’s quite possible that a K-70 level camera, a 645 camera or even a KP2 could come out before that. I can only imagine the histrionics if the latter happens.

Anyway, that is the information I know that came from named people with a clear association with Ricoh. I don’t pay much attention to anonymous posters myself.

I could go further and speculate about a lot more features the camera will have, but no better than you. I think it’s reasonable to look at other Ricoh models K-1 and GR III) and infer that some features will come over. I also think that Ricoh will want to keep up with competitors and implement some other capabilities that competitors have. It makes sense to me.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 09-01-2019, 02:46 AM  
Who is gonna buy KP-J ?
Posted By JPT
Replies: 20
Views: 1,464
Actually, I’m from Britain, but I’ve lived in Tokyo for a long time. Your written English is better than my written Japanese, I think.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 08-31-2019, 07:01 PM  
Who is gonna buy KP-J ?
Posted By JPT
Replies: 20
Views: 1,464
Well, the KP J is the kind of item you buy with your heart, not your head. It won't have any functional benefit over the KP you have, so it's just a question of whether the pleasure of owning a limited model is going to be worth the extra cost. It sounds like you don't need it.

By the way, my point about the Ricoh store being a better deal is not that it is the cheapest way to buy - it's not. My point is that you get some extras, like the 3 year warranty. If I'm going to be an early adopter, I find it best to buy from them direct. If I were buying a standard KP now, it would be much better to buy from Kitamura or another store, because they have good discounts after some months or years.

Here is the deal from the Ricoh Store:
- You pay 3,200 yen to join the family club
- They give you 3,000 yen of Ricoh Store points (So you are only spending 200 yen to join really)
- You pay full price for the camera
- It comes with a 3-year warranty, rather than the standard 1 year
- You get 13% points back in store points (have to spend with Ricoh)
- This might be for the GR III only, but I got a slip of paper offering a one-time free sensor cleaning service in the box
- As a Family Club member, they send you a magazine once every 3 months
- As a store customer, you will get a news email from Ricoh every Friday (not so interesting) and occasionally, this email asks you to answer surveys about preferences for future products (very interesting)

This is all limited to Japan residents, in case anyone is wondering. I don't know what the deal is elsewhere.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 08-31-2019, 02:25 AM  
Who is gonna buy KP-J ?
Posted By JPT
Replies: 20
Views: 1,464
I agree that the KP J feels and looks really nice, especially the dark blue one. It’s the nicest of the colors they’ve made in my opinion.

I’m quite tempted by it because some of my lenses are silver and the blue will look better than black with them. The reason I won’t is because I just bought a GR III and don’t want to spend on camera stuff again for a while.

If you are serious about getting it, I recommend buying from Ricoh direct, either online or in Shinjuku. If you are a family club member, you should get 13% reward points and it will have a 3-year warranty. I bought my GR III this way and it was by far the best deal. They also did some extra stuff as “service”, but that might just be my good luck.

Another deal I saw last week was at Fujiya Camera in Nakano. If you bought the KP J at the same time as the DA 20-40 Limited, they would discount 15,000 yen. I don’t know if this still stands.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-28-2019, 06:35 AM  
New Sony APS-C Sensor - 26MP
Posted By JPT
Replies: 1,132
Views: 74,430
I agree. As I said back on page 4, I don't believe the top Pentax APS-C will use the 26MP sensor. The new battle ground for APS-C will be around 30MP. The 26MP sensor is positioned lower. It would be just right for a K-70 replacement though.

It's interesting that we also have a rumor today about two new Sony APS-C G-series lenses. I'm sure those are designed for a better Sony sensor that will be in their high-end model, and possibly an APS-C model of the Nikon Z. We haven't seen that sensor yet. Fuji is also slow to update their two top models (X-Pro and X-H1). I think they'll be waiting for it too.

Pentax is getting ready for higher resolutions with the DA* 11-18 and the standard zoom on the roadmap. These and the new Sony lenses need to have their peak image quality closer to open aperture because of the pixel density on these sensors.

I think the next year or so is going to be quite interesting for APS-C camera releases.

---------- Post added 08-28-19 at 10:47 PM ----------

That was quick - I'm proved wrong within minutes!

Both new Sony cameras are 24MP.

I still think we'll see higher resolution sensors soon,
Forum: Pentax K-S1 & K-S2 08-22-2019, 04:02 AM  
Where did all the k-s1 chromatic bodies go?
Posted By JPT
Replies: 5
Views: 367
I’ve seen the purple one, the silver one and the one with yellow down the side in Japanese second hand shops, but it’s rare. The three colors that were in the standard line-up are much more common.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 08-20-2019, 07:08 PM  
Ideas for the ideal Pentax FF DSLR.
Posted By JPT
Replies: 59
Views: 3,161
My opinion:

1) A camera of similar specification to the K-1 downsized into a smaller body, targeting 800g. It would be to the K-1 II, what the KP was to the K-3 II. Could have new features to facilitate use of legacy lenses. It would mainly be for stills and designed to be the perfect companion to the FA limited lenses.

2) The K-3 is getting a big upgrade next year. It will be a new platform of AF/metering/processor they can apply to other sensor sizes. So I expect a full frame flagship 1-2 years afterwards that would be positioned like the D850 is now. It would be a much more versatile camera with smarter AF and high-speed shooting for sports and wildlife.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-16-2019, 04:59 AM  
New Sony APS-C Sensor - 26MP
Posted By JPT
Replies: 1,132
Views: 74,430
This could be my fault. I said after seeing the Iwasaki-Wakashiro-Tanaka discussion at CP+ that I thought spring 2020 was a possibility for the new camera. It was a very vague discussion and that was my interpretation. If it is going to cause so much angst, perhaps I should just keep my mouth shut.

Anyway, I do hope your decision to go with Canon is working out well for you.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-16-2019, 04:26 AM  
New zoom 70-200 F4
Posted By JPT
Replies: 400
Views: 45,447
When they talked about the 70-200/4 at CP+, they mentioned on stage that its main characteristic is light weight. I have no idea when it will be released, but when it does, I think it will be fairly light.

And I don’t think it is unreasonable to expect full frame lenses to be light. They used to be, and even though the current trend is toward massive lenses designed for test charts, I think there is a space for lighter, more characteristic lenses as well.

One lens I would like is the Tamron 35-150/2.8-4. That would be really nice on APS-C as a replacement for the 50-135/2.8, but also useful on FF. People complain when Ricoh licenses Tamron lenses, but that one would be great.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-14-2019, 05:29 AM  
New Sony APS-C Sensor - 26MP
Posted By JPT
Replies: 1,132
Views: 74,430
Thanks! So Tanaka-san's main points are:
- He's heard about a new camera this year, but probably only a minor update or a special edition.
- The new APS-C flagship in the second half of next year, but it looks like it will be worth the wait.
- He's not sure what's happening with the lightweight FF zoom lens he was expecting.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 08-13-2019, 04:18 PM  
On the topic of upgrades
Posted By JPT
Replies: 17
Views: 929
I had a K-20D (K-7 sensor) and now have a K-5IIs. I also have a GRIII now. I’m seriously thinking about a KP in the future.

I really like the K-5IIs. The image quality is a definite step up from the K20D. However, the KP seems to be a significant step up again.

There are also some other upgrades aside from image quality that are not to be ignored.
- The AF is more sophisticated.
- It can use KAF4 mount lenses like the 55-300 PLM and the DFA 50/1.4. The K-5IIs has never been updated to support KAF4, so it is less future proof.
- Live view is awful on the K-5IIs but very usable on the KP because it can do the whole process without dropping the mirror. There is also a tilt screen. I often have to shoot over crowds but it would also be useful for low angle shots. Live view would also make focusing your manual focus lenses easier.
- It can transfer images to a smartphone. I’ve been using this way more than anticipated with my GRIII.

The only concerns would be:
- If you often shoot more than 400 shots in an outing and object to switching between two batteries.
- If you can’t adjust to a small grip

My opinion is that since you don’t change your cameras often, you should get one which is as future-ready as you can. I guess there will be some nice deals on the KP closer to Christmas.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-12-2019, 08:28 PM  
Lensbaby no longer making Pentax mounts
Posted By JPT
Replies: 110
Views: 5,980
Isn’t that part of the deal with third party lenses? You pay less money for a lens that isn’t perfectly optimised for your system, and often falls behind the original brand offerings in some way. At one time it was flare. Now it seems to be AF, but Paul would be in a better position to comment on that.

The irony is that these lenses would be better on Pentax than Canon or Nikon, because Pentax is the only DSLR system that would stabilise them.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-12-2019, 03:52 PM  
Lensbaby no longer making Pentax mounts
Posted By JPT
Replies: 110
Views: 5,980
Sigma’s decision not to make their newer lenses in K-mount was directly related to poor sales of the 35mm f1.4 full frame Art lens.

This is very high quality lens with obvious utility. In many ways it’s exactly the kind of lens that Pentax users were hoping Sigma would come out with, but sadly they don’t buy it. Instead they complain that there isn’t a Pentax version.

My guess is the the only thing that would convince Sigma to make lenses in K-mount again would be a meaningful increase in sales of that lens, or maybe the 18-35 in the APS-C world.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-09-2019, 06:44 PM  
Pentax KP J Limited edition released
Posted By JPT
Replies: 138
Views: 12,259
The Japanese website DC Watch has an interesting report on the KP J Limited Night at Ricoh's Shinjuku showroom.

I think the Google translation is understandable for the most part. What struck me was the following.
- The KP J seems to have been successful beyond their expectations (I don't agree with the Google translation "beyond imagination" - too extreme)
- Only Ricoh would be flexible enough about branding to let TKO try this and do things like bring back the old logo. Actually they did this by letting Marc Nelson use the old font on the K-01 too. If they are going to use the old logo, I'd like them to use the old font too. The irony is that design preferences go round and the old logo/font looks more contemporary, while the official 80s-tastic one looks old hat to me. I'd like them just go over to the old brand identity - not for nostalgic reasons but because it just looks better.
- It looks like they are thinking for doing this again with other models, especially the K-1
- It's interesting that there is a strategy behind this camera to get away from homogeneity in the market - the idea that cameras have become "all the same if you cover the logo"

Japanese article
??????????????"1%er"????PENTAX KP J limited NIGHT? - ???? Watch

Through Google
Google Translate
Forum: Ricoh GR 08-07-2019, 11:45 PM  
Image Sync update: Remote, Bluetooth and more with GR III
Posted By JPT
Replies: 9
Views: 1,015
Ricoh has finally added the missing features to Image Sync. I haven’t had a chance to try it yet but it sounds great, if long overdue.


RICOH GR III Corresponding version (2.0.5) is released. To use this version, RICOH GR III firmware (version 1.10 or later) update is required.

The below functions are added.
・Remote Capture Function
・Bluetooth Connection
・Transfer reservation, Viewing images after turning off the camera power
・Synchronize date and time
・Location information sending

Forum: Ricoh GR 08-04-2019, 04:22 PM  
The GR III is the best camera ever made
Posted By JPT
Replies: 15
Views: 1,532
Have you seen the blog entry from a while ago about why they went with such a minimalist catalogue design? I found it quite interesting.

What I Want to Convey in the GR III Catalog (NOGUCHI) | GR official | RICOH official community site

That GR Blog generally has quite a lot of content on it, and they go to the trouble of translating it into English.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-02-2019, 05:13 PM  
Pentax KP J Limited edition released
Posted By JPT
Replies: 138
Views: 12,259
At a recent event they were showing off versions with the AOCO logo printed on them (i.e. not a sticker applied). Looks better without the cover in my opinion.

It does appear that the reaction to these models is quite positive.

There is something quite interesting about they way they are handling this marketing. The guy who designs this "TKO" is always present at the events, getting reaction from the visitors. He is the person I spoke to at CP+, by the way. He is very friendly, passionate about his project and speaks good English.

When I mention events, I'm talking about the KP J Limited Nights at Ricoh's own Imaging Square locations and the KP J Limited Tour at rented event spaces in other cities.

What I'm interested in seeing is:
- whether they continue the KP J initiative and make some of the other colours they were showing at CP+
- whether they extend it to other models - the K-1 II would be the obvious choice
- whether any of the features they are experimenting with end up in future "regular" models. I'm sure some people would like the AOCO logo, and if the new mount material is really better, they it might make sense to make it standard.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-02-2019, 07:09 AM  
PENTAX 100YEARS OF HISTORY original goods online
Posted By JPT
Replies: 44
Views: 4,836
They have made some baseball caps available now.

???????? - ??????? | RICOH IMAGING

4,700 yen seems a lot for a cap, but I know some people are really into them.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 07-30-2019, 05:36 AM  
Pentax KP J Limited edition released
Posted By JPT
Replies: 138
Views: 12,259
Being delivered to stores that ordered them now.

Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 07-27-2019, 01:36 AM  
Various Pentax and Theta accessories announced by Ricoh Imaging
Posted By JPT
Replies: 41
Views: 3,753
I find it amusing that Ricoh is selling a “selfie stick” with the objective of letting the user take a 360 photo with less of them “self” in the image.

It does make a lot of sense, though. They probably find a lot of Theta buyers also buy a stick. Ricoh will want to sell them that. Otherwise they’re just leaving that few thousand yen on the table. Now they’ll have their own branded accessory on the shelf, next to the Theta, cases and other branded accessories.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 07-25-2019, 05:59 AM  
Posted By JPT
Replies: 79
Views: 7,377
If you can understand Japanese, take a look at this video of a presentation, which is on Ricoh's own Youtube channel. 35:20 is where they talk about the next DSLR, with the lead developer on the stage. It's a high-end DSLR in APS-C format. So in fact, Ricoh has been talking about this camera directly.

You Tube

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