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Old Jan 12, 2012, 3:42 PM   #11
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Tullio,

No disrespect, but with regards to Canon, Nikon and Sony being "on top" Thom is referring to market share. It's not delusional. Here is a post regarding 2010 worldwide market share:
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ge...et-shares.html

...
I think you misunderstood me, John. What I meant to say was that a few years ago Thom would never had acknowledge that Sony would become a real strong player in the photographic world but a pretentious electronic company trying to break into the field by acquiring Minolta.
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Old Jan 12, 2012, 8:53 PM   #12
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If it ever came down to it, I think Panasonic is in a position it could take in the Olympus product design team much the same way Sony gobbled up the Minolta team and photographic product line. Panasonic is huge and has already integrated it's system with much of the Olympus technology with the anti-dust and flash systems. At this point they have a lineup that could easily survive on its' own and do very well. Adding Olympus know-how with the JPEG processing would be the icing on the cake for Panasonic.
If Panasonic took over Olympus and maintained its name, I think they could succeed. The question is, what if say Fuji or kodak takes over Olympus and then decide to discontinue the m4/3 format altogether...would Panasonic be able to keep up with the competition by being the only company offering m4/3 products? I'm not sure they would.
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Old Jan 13, 2012, 1:00 PM   #13
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Latest possibility per Reuters story today: Samsung may consider alliance with Olympus: source

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...80A2EC20120112
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Old Jan 13, 2012, 1:47 PM   #14
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If Panasonic took over Olympus and maintained its name, I think they could succeed. The question is, what if say Fuji or kodak takes over Olympus and then decide to discontinue the m4/3 format altogether...would Panasonic be able to keep up with the competition by being the only company offering m4/3 products? I'm not sure they would.
Kodak is not going to be taking anyone over. I have my doubts it will even be in existence a year from now. Not sure anything I have seen regarding Fuji and Olympus is anything more than someone throwing around an idea the execs at Fuji know nothing about.

Sony's situation was, they had no DSLR product line so they just took over for Konica Minolta and changed the name of the mount.

Panasonic has already done this. They already use the mount Olympus does, and they already sell a Pen-type product in the GX1 and they sell the GH series instead of something like the Sony a77 or NEX 7.

Panasonic is way, way bigger than the combined Ricoh-Pentax company. Probably not that much smaller than Sony and they are way, way bigger overall and with more resources than Nikon and could do just about whatever they felt like in terms of investing additional funds into the system. I just can't see a reason why Panasonic could not only survive, but thrive if the product keeps improving. They already have close to state of the art sensor technology that they've chosen to so far to not share with Olympus.

If the new Pro Pen that's supposed to be introduced in February has the same old 12MP sensor Olympus has been using now for more than 3 years....well....let's just hope it does not.

Last edited by Greg Chappell; Jan 13, 2012 at 2:22 PM.
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Old Jan 13, 2012, 2:46 PM   #15
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If the new Pro Pen that's supposed to be introduced in February has the same old 12MP sensor Olympus has been using now for more than 3 years....well....let's just hope it does not.
I think you've hit it squarely on the head. The new camera should include

an up to date sensor
built-in EVF
improved AF system
better dynamic range

and the ability to use both the m43 + 43 lenses.

Anything less than that, then why bother.


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Old Jan 13, 2012, 3:01 PM   #16
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Zig and Greg - let me ask: is it a "pro pen" or a "flagship pen"? There's an important distinction. If you really want a professional tool and not just a flagship tool then you need to be looking at what professionals are demanding. Here is where you get into trouble from a marketing standpoint. For the photojournalist, the benchmark of the PRO camera is the new Nikon D4. Today's PJs need to do it all - normal PJ work, sports work, video. If you're a wedding or studio pro, you're seeing the Canon 5dII and nikon d700/d3s as the current choices. I think the d4 and new canon 1dx being a bit too pricey. I'm not seeing a m4/3 advantage for the studio photog. So, if you want to market a "pro" camera - which "pro" market are you targeting? Why is it important? Because - if you want to build a tool the PROS use - you need to listen to what PROS want - not hobbyists. Pros don't care what you call the tool. They'll look at it and decide it meets their needs or it doesn't. If a company wants to call a camera a PRO camera you better be able to make a clear argument why a professional photog should choose it over the competition.
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Old Jan 13, 2012, 3:27 PM   #17
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I think you know the answer to that one....

I used "Pro Pen" only because it's a term I have seen in articles that was used by Olympus reps being questioned and others in talking about this upcoming model, like here..

http://www.43rumors.com/ft5-super-ol...ucts/#comments

Almost anyone reading this knows how "pro" this is likely to be. They don't even have what you could vaguely term "pro" optics to use with it, unless Olympus has solved the riddle of being able to effectively utilize lenses like the four-thirds optics such as the 90-250mm f2.8, 300mm f2.8, 35-100mm f2, 150mm f2 and 14-35mm f2. From the Rumors website ratings system, I'd have to give that one about an FT1 chance of happening, and only because there's nothing lower.

Canon once sold a "Pro-1" digicam. Hopefully, this will be a little more serious camera than that was.

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Old Jan 13, 2012, 3:52 PM   #18
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John,

Pro Pen is just a marketing name, probably chosen by an Olympus management individual with no real understanding of the market. Just as it seems like all the manufacturers have, for some reason adopted the letter 'X' as part of the name of their new offerings. What that signifies is a mystery to me. As I always thought that the letter X was an acronym for the "unknown". i.e. the X factor.

I think anyone who has ever owned or used an Olympus camera understands that the so-called 'Pro Pen' will nowhere approach the performance capabilities of the camera bodies that you mention.

Heck, it would be nice if the sensor's dynamic range could match the competition. Nikon certainly proved it's possible with their Nikon mirror less camera. And that, uses even a smaller sensor than that of the m43.

I think it is safe to say that whatever is released, it will not meet the needs of a professional photographer.
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Old Jan 13, 2012, 4:52 PM   #19
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Zig and Greg - that's my point. It's not to degrade the camera, it's to point out an already existing marketing gaffe. Successful companies aren't always the ones that make the pinacle of capability - they're the ones that know their market and build products that market wants. Think of it from our end - how many people want to 'make some money with their photos' - same problem. The people that are successful aren't always the best photographers. They're the ones that make a product a certain market wants and they're good at marketing to that target audience. Oly or anyone else needs to identify their target audience and market to that audience. That, in a nutshell is their problem to solve. And, I submit, in the consumer electronics world it isn't engineering quality that matters. Oly makes lenses better than most. But the mass consumer just doesn't care. They just don't know any better. It's not enough of a marketing "hook". Sad and unfortunate for us photographers.
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Old Jan 14, 2012, 1:01 PM   #20
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I think Olympus knows exactly where their market is, not the true pro market, and that's exactly why they are calling it what they are. You only need to spend a little bit of time in the micro four thirds forum at DPReview to see exactly what lots are looking for in a better body, and it SOUNDS like Olympus is going to deliver. If they get the sensor part right, they'll sell lots of these new bodies, whether it includes anyone above the enthusiast level user or not.

People who really need pro-level bodies know where they need to go. Those people have not looked at Olympus for a long time, and the last place they are going to look is here, now. If one does, there's a very good possibility they aren't quite as "pro" as they would like to think.

Last edited by Greg Chappell; Jan 14, 2012 at 7:00 PM.
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