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Guest

Being a former Pentax user and a fan of MX and KX cameras, I really do not want to see them out of the picture soon. Although several favorable attempts and take overs in the last years, including the last move of Ricoh, I personally do not believe that they would survive due to several facts..



There might be various debates on how Pentax can survive,but I simply would like to draw your attention to one subject. Pentax has several famous prime lenses (esp. limited edition ones). Considering their very small market share in the DSRL market (and economies of scale), why don't they produce these lenses for the giants such as Nikon and Canon. I am sure many Nikon and Canon users would love to be able to use some Pentax lenses as an alternative.



As a consequence, I believe this should be the way Pentax should follow such as Zeiss/Leica. Otherwise considering their existing and unfortunately diminishing market share in DSRL market, although some might be reputable, their lens sales will be also very limited. What do you think?
I think they've two options:

1) they have both the expertise as well as the reputation for micro stuff. The Pentax Q is certainly a start although I suspect that they pushed it too far here.

2) they could simply move to being a lens manufacturer only. Both MFT and Sony E are open systems in this respect.



Their quest in the DSLR market is rather hopeless IMHO. They are just too small.
Before the release of the first iMac and then OS X everyone asked "can Apple survive?". I don't think many guessed the outcome. Hopefully Pentax/Ricoh will find their own surprising way to achieve success. However, with brand labels being a stronger seller than functionality or value, it's certainly going to be an uphill battle.
If you're going to bring Apple into it, before the iPod they were nothing. Pentax needs an iPod moment. Doesn't need to be original, but they need to be the first to make it work well. They have the Q... which might have had a chance if they didn't price it as they did.



While I would welcome another general lens company, I think it has to be one of the other. If their lenses are available on systems other than their own, it devalues their own bodies. But exiting a SLR business is difficult without losing the confidence of your existing customers.
[quote name='boren' timestamp='1320394011' post='12659']

Before the release of the first iMac and then OS X everyone asked "can Apple survive?". I don't think many guessed the outcome. Hopefully Pentax/Ricoh will find their own surprising way to achieve success. However, with brand labels being a stronger seller than functionality or value, it's certainly going to be an uphill battle.

[/quote]



Apple vs MS does not apply. This is/was about just 2 (serious) alternatives for consumers. If Apple died it would have made an impact.

If Pentax died few would actually notice. There are more players in the market today than 10 years ago.

davidmanze

Hi guys,

It must be remembered that the DSLR market is small in comparison with compact sales and Ricoh/pentax manufacture many products so the problem rests in profitability in DSLR sales and lens market. Chaan the problem with manufacturing lenses for other cameras is we enter into the shoe styles and sizes style scenario with all the electronics/compatibility/full frame choices to boot,Zeiss makes great lenses but doesn't want to go down autofocus/exposure route without holding Sony's hand. I'm sure that Pentax does not want to go there either. They now make three different bayonet types,besides Pentax primes are not cheap! IMHO pentax needs to produce a new system of autofocus with all the NIKANON bells and whistles and keep up the good work in all other departments and be competitive in their pricing, especially at launch!how many lost sales went to the Nikon D7000 while the K5 was asking a premium price? a lost customer possibility who buys CANIKON won't be back again! Olympus sales are not huge and there still surviving with there small sensor and higher ISO noise, and I forget which review said the new E5 will maybe not attract CANIKONOPEN buyers but for Olympus owners it is a big improvement,a cul de sac market? As for Sigma if the SD1 is unprofitable and leads nowhere Sigma's share prices won't suffer to much with their lens profitability.Sony have taken a gamble on their electronic veiwfinder and somehow I think they've given themselves a lead on the competition which in a few years will put Sony in a very strong position! This is a ferociously competitive market and marketing errors cost companies. Dave's clichés
Klaus, my point wasn't about how many people would notice, but about Apple being close to bankruptcy around 1996-97 with no hope in sight, only to make a huge comeback. Nobody predicted what followed (except maybe Steve Jobs). Here's a nice summary:



http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-com...ry-2010-10#



BTW, Apple never had the largest market share in the PC market. Pentax on the other hand did have the largest SLR market share back in the early 1960's (or at least so I've heard).
[quote name='boren' timestamp='1320403384' post='12666']

Klaus, my point wasn't about how many people would notice, but about Apple being close to bankruptcy around 1996-97 with no hope in sight, only to make a huge comeback. Nobody predicted what followed (except maybe Steve Jobs). Here's a nice summary:



[url="http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-comeback-story-2010-10#"]http://www.businessi...-story-2010-10#[/url]



BTW, Apple never had the largest market share in the PC market. Pentax on the other hand did have the largest SLR market share back in the early 1960's (or at least so I've heard).

[/quote]



Yes, but even close to bankruptcy Apple was a huge company with lots of resources. This does not apply to Pentax. They simply don't have the development resources to compete seriously in terms of electronics or software/firmware - traditionally their engineering shined with respect to mechanics/optics. Maybe things will get a little better with Ricoh now but two dwarfs are still no giant.

Guest

[quote name='dave's clichés' timestamp='1320402975' post='12665']

Hi guys,

It must be remembered that the DSLR market is small in comparison with compact sales and Ricoh/pentax manufacture many products so the problem rests in profitability in DSLR sales and lens market. Chaan the problem with manufacturing lenses for other cameras is we enter into the shoe styles and sizes style scenario with all the electronics/compatibility/full frame choices to boot,Zeiss makes great lenses but doesn't want to go down autofocus/exposure route without holding Sony's hand. I'm sure that Pentax does not want to go there either. They now make three different bayonet types,besides Pentax primes are not cheap! IMHO pentax needs to produce a new system of autofocus with all the NIKANON bells and whistles and keep up the good work in all other departments and be competitive in their pricing, especially at launch!how many lost sales went to the Nikon D7000 while the K5 was asking a premium price? a lost customer possibility who buys CANIKON won't be back again! Olympus sales are not huge and there still surviving with there small sensor and higher ISO noise, and I forget which review said the new E5 will maybe not attract CANIKONOPEN buyers but for Olympus owners it is a big improvement,a cul de sac market? As for Sigma if the SD1 is unprofitable and leads nowhere Sigma's share prices won't suffer to much with their lens profitability.Sony have taken a gamble on their electronic veiwfinder and somehow I think they've given themselves a lead on the competition which in a few years will put Sony in a very strong position! This is a ferociously competitive market and marketing errors cost companies. Dave's clichés

[/quote]



Neither Pentax lenses nor cameras are cheap and could be cheaper if they keep on walking on the same route. It's simply economies of scale, if you are not big, then you can not be cheap so should choose a niche market. That's why, if I were Pentax, despite the compatibility issues I would try to produce my best wanted lenses also for other camera producers. Why to compete in DSLR camera field where you have so little share? If they can sell more lenses => more competitive lens prices =>more attractive lens designs + more financial resources in DSRL micro MTF like cameras

Guest

[quote name='Klaus' timestamp='1320391565' post='12658']

I think they've two options:

1) they have both the expertise as well as the reputation for micro stuff. The Pentax Q is certainly a start although I suspect that they pushed it too far here.

2) they could simply move to being a lens manufacturer only. Both MFT and Sony E are open systems in this respect.



Their quest in the DSLR market is rather hopeless IMHO. They are just too small.

[/quote]





I suppose Pentax Q was a quite nonsense move although it might have brought some experience with it (albeit a costly one assuming their scarce financial resources). I agree MFT and Sony E are open markets but in addition to the huge DSRL market (where they have already well proven, reputable primes)