Nothing new from Pentax-Ricoh this year.

Started Oct 8, 2011 | Discussions thread
Richard Murdey
Senior MemberPosts: 1,355Gear list
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Re: Nothing new from Pentax-Ricoh this year.
In reply to Wheatfield, Oct 9, 2011

Wheatfield wrote:

Missing the boat on mirrorless isn't really missing anything at all. It's like saying Massey-Ferguson missed the boat on passenger cars.

Awesome analogy, dude! That made my day.

Still, even holding your place in today's camera market takes requires skill and tremendous effort. Clawing back marketshare will take real vision and leadership.

I also don't think there is a boat to miss when it comes to mirrorless, because it's not even a real category. What we are talking about it compact cameras with interchangeable lenses, with at present the full gamut of sensor sizes from Pentax Q on one end to Sony NEX on the other. And at last count no less than 5 incompatible lens mounts, and only one, mFT, can be said be a true "interchangeable lens system" - everything else has maybe 4-5 native lenses.

It's yet to be seen, really, whether consumers are actually going for the "interchangeable lens" part of the package. The only thing we know for certain is they don't like dSLRs much, because they are too big and too complicated. They don't like compacts much either, because they are small, fiddly, and suck in anything besides bright sunlight. I suspect most mFT owners leave the kit zoom on their camera 100% of the time.

So looking ahead the whole scene is wide open. Especially now that sensor size has filled in with a wealth of options now between APS-C and 1/1.8".

Some hints about what we can expect come from Fuji, currently the most innovative player in the field: The retro-rangefinder styled compacts, X100 and X10. That's one direction. Nikon 1 is another. Pentax Q is another. Ricoh GRX yet another. There are still many others to be explored.

If I was in charge of product development, I would build a digital Trip 35. Fairly clunky, boxy camera though slightly smaller than the original. A 35 mm FOV lens, not interchangeable. Sensor big enough and aperture fast enough to make sure indoor shots could be taken handheld without too much trouble. Make it dirt cheap. No more than $299. The design is clean yet sexy. Dog simple optical viewfinder. Radically simple control interface, relying on a customizable, capacitive touchscreen for most setting adjustment but physical controls for the shutter and other mission critical controls. Experts use the expert touchscreen interface of their choice. Most people use the basic one. Make the experience fun. No lists of 30 scene modes to choose from, just go out and take pictures with the camera offering creative backup when called for.

Hey, someone hire me!

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