Olympus Outlook

dhazeghi

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A more comprehensive outlook on Olympus' camera future: http://www.43rumors.com/olympus-financial-report-company-doing-well-but-camera-business-in-loss/. It's good that they look like reducing model variations, as well as P&S cameras (which are rapidly being overtaken by mobile phone cameras).
Those all sound reasonable, but I don't think it's really enough. They're selling just over 510k bodies per year, and they've got a retail channel with 250k bodies unsold inventory, yet they're expecting to increase sales by 15% over the next year even as the overall ILC/DSLR market is expected to either remain flat or shrink. That's not an impossible task, but it's not an easy one either. The fact that sales are down most significantly in Europe and North America is also worrying.

One way I think they could improve sales at the bottom would be to ditch the 14-42 II R as their kit lens and replace it with something smaller and more suited to the cameras, like the 14-42EZ. Sony seems to have gotten a lot of mileage from their NEX 6/16-50 kit as has Panasonic with their GM1/12-32.
 

OzRay

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A lot of people say marketing departments know exactly what customers want and that's why we see what we see on offer. I really find that hard to believe at times.
 

yakky

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They need to start pushing the size envelope more like Sony has. More pancakes and smaller bodies.
 

OzRay

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I personally think they need less. There are far too many models already, especially in the Pen range. All they need is a low end Pen and a high end Pen, and a low end OMD and a high end OMD. Update models as required, but don't introduce models that overlap. The car industry was providing models to suit just about every need and now the successful ones have trimmed things significantly and are doing well.

Lenses are very much a personal choice and things like pancakes attract a very small minority, so there would be no return on investment. In fact, the lens line-up is quite expansive already and really only missing in a few areas, it doesn't need the range that Canon/Nikon offers, which consist mostly of legacy lenses from the film era (how many have been updated for digital sensors?).
 

dornblaser

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I personally think they need less. There are far too many models already, especially in the Pen range. All they need is a low end Pen and a high end Pen, and a low end OMD and a high end OMD. Update models as required, but don't introduce models that overlap. The car industry was providing models to suit just about every need and now the successful ones have trimmed things significantly and are doing well.

Lenses are very much a personal choice and things like pancakes attract a very small minority, so there would be no return on investment. In fact, the lens line-up is quite expansive already and really only missing in a few areas, it doesn't need the range that Canon/Nikon offers, which consist mostly of legacy lenses from the film era (how many have been updated for digital sensors?).
Reading that article, it sounds that lens sales are key and that PEN owners purchase fewer lenses.
 

OzRay

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Reading that article, it sounds that lens sales are key and that PEN owners purchase fewer lenses.
I wouldn't be surprised. The Pen is supposed to be an 'easy to carry with you anywhere' sort of camera, so for the majority, buying lots of lenses would defeat the purpose. My wife is happy with the standard zoom on the E-P2 and I never remove the 17mm from my E-P1.
 

dornblaser

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Yes, and with cameras like the E-PMx and GM-1, we have both, not having dials makes it hard not have the camera set on auto and treat it like a P&S. No offense meant to anyone who loves those cameras. Lens like the 14, 17, 20, EZ & 12-32 are meant to live on those cameras. If you are a one body household, Olympus and Panasonic are unlikely to sell you many more lenses.

Post-Script edit: which is why, I think, that the rumored E-PL7 has two dials. A mode dial is useless, IMHO, but it's self.
 

yakky

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.

Lenses are very much a personal choice and things like pancakes attract a very small minority, so there would be no return on investment. In fact, the lens line-up is quite expansive already and really only missing in a few areas,
Is that why the Panasonic 14 and 20 are so popular? People come to M43 for size, not IQ.
 

drd1135

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Some companies like Ricoh are much larger than there imagining division and can run the camera part at a reasonable loss for prestige and name recognition reasons. After all, they didn't acquire Pentax with a big profit motive.
 

speedandstyle

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I think that the Pen line should always have been just 2 models! The E-PM bodies were way too similar to the E-PL to warrant their existence. Panasonic on the other had has a different beast with the GM in that it is super small. I can see maybe keeping the E-PM line but ONLY if they market it in the same way.

I can see the OM-D line being just two models but I doubt it will happen.


Some companies like Ricoh are much larger than there imagining division and can run the camera part at a reasonable loss for prestige and name recognition reasons. After all, they didn't acquire Pentax with a big profit motive.
And they recently dropped the "Pentax" from their name. Pentax is now only used for cameras and their associated extras.
 

OzRay

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Some companies like Ricoh are much larger than there imagining division and can run the camera part at a reasonable loss for prestige and name recognition reasons. After all, they didn't acquire Pentax with a big profit motive.
The camera division is only a small part of the Olympus conglomerate, the imaging division (medical et al) is significantly larger, thus the talk about merging the camera division with the imaging division.
 

dhazeghi

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Is that why the Panasonic 14 and 20 are so popular? People come to M43 for size, not IQ.
Well, I think with the smaller bodies/lenses, they come for both. Better-than-P&S quality in a smaller-than-DSLR package. Which is why it's been so puzzling that Olympus has managed only 2 pancake lenses (the 14-42 EZ and 17/2.8), neither of which are particularly affordable or particularly good.
 

dhazeghi

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My view has always been, that if you want pancake lenses, buy a Pentax (Ricoh). :rolleyes:
In order to make use of really compact lenses, you should buy a not-very-compact body? Plus there's the fact that Pentax just doesn't believe in standard focal lengths - instead they make lenses for all sorts of weird in-between focal lengths that aren't particularly helpful.
 

OzRay

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In order to make use of really compact lenses, you should buy a not-very-compact body? Plus there's the fact that Pentax just doesn't believe in standard focal lengths - instead they make lenses for all sorts of weird in-between focal lengths that aren't particularly helpful.
That was a tongue-in-cheek suggestion, as I've always noticed that people rave about the fact that Pentax makes all these pancake lenses. Every time a new one comes out, angels sing and everything is good with the world. :biggrin:
 

drd1135

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I should be careful about using "imaging" and "camera" interchangeably. :redface: Pentax made smaller DSLR bodies and the pancake lenses were sort of "their thing" when going against Canon and Nikon. The size issue is both overblown and critical. Overblown because it's just a matter of taste and critical because it affects buying decisions. Anything that makes people buy equipment, regardless of it's impact on their photography, is important to the camera companies. The problem is figuring out those preferences. Olympus is basing their decisions on what sells, so the OMs are getting preference over the high end Pens.
 

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