Do 'enthusiast' level cameras have a future?


Link Posted 25/10/2016 - 16:46
Visiting Currys for the first time in several months today to browse their IT section, I was shocked to see the surface area given over to photography had been reduced by a good 60% since my last visit. Whilst they parted company with Pentax a long time back, Currys now clearly see little chance of making much of a profit from photographic related sales. With the march of the smartphone, will the only cameras being manufactured in 10-15 years be for the professional user? Will there be a future for cameras aimed at the enthusiast bearing in mind the high costs associated with research, development and marketing ?



Link Posted 25/10/2016 - 18:35
I don't think Currys is a reliable barometer for trends other than mass market consumer products. Top end hi-fi, tv, even posh fridges, have never featured.


Link Posted 26/10/2016 - 10:41
I don't see phones having much impact on enthusiast cameras. The bottom end of the camera market can be replaced by phones, but they can't match a beginners DSLR, let alone the semi-pro/enthusiast models. I'm sure there will continue to be people like myself who enjoy photography but can't justify spending top whack, for kit with more ruggedness than they need.

If the market ever got to the point where it was phones & pro models only how would potential pros learn to use their tools!
Pentax:K5ii, K7, K100D, DA18-55, DA10-17, DA55-300, DA50-200, F100-300, F50, DA35 AL, 4* M50, 2* M135, Helicoid extension, Tak 300 f4 (& 6 film bodies)
3rd Party: Bigmos (Sigma 150-500mm OS HSM),2* 28mm, 100mm macro, 28-200 zoom, 35-80 zoom, 80-200 zoom, 80-210 zoom, 300mm M42, 600 mirror, 1000-4000 scope, 50mm M42, enlarger lenses, Sony & micro 4/3 cameras with various PK mounts, Zenit E...
Far to many tele-converters, adapters, project parts & extension tubes etc.

.[size=11:].Flickr WPF Panoramio


Link Posted 26/10/2016 - 11:57
In sheer volume terms the 'enthusiast' market will always exceed the 'pro' market...ultimately its the size of the customer base a company haves that will determine its success and of course many 'enthusiasts' will be future 'pros' as Mike mentions.

What I do expect to happen is that the likes of Canikon will severely prune the numbers of models they offer and across the industry the 18 month life cycle of a model we have all come to know will probably be extended out to about 3 years before being replaced.



Link Posted 26/10/2016 - 12:47
I don't know if is just me but there seem to be more DSLRs around than a few years ago, especially at nature reserves. And walk around tourist spots where there are plenty of mirrorless bodies. But don't get me started on selfie sticks!


Link Posted 26/10/2016 - 13:20
Dixons Group (Currys/PC World/ Carphone Warehouse/Dixons Direct etc) have long treated photography as a seasonal fad. It isn't long since they had one of their bouts of being serious and stocked up with Camera bags, tripods and even a few lenses. they had a spell with DSLR stock (including Pentax - (I got a 35mm DA cheap in one of these moments), then they went leaving afew Caonikon entry models, then mirrorless, then most of those went.None of their minimum wage staff know anything unless it's their own hobby. Nothing new in 40 years of watching them other than little competition around. I have to go to Sheffield to see much of interest (Harrisons for Camera bags etc, John Lewis for amusement) and buy off SRS for my Pentax needs. No proper camera shops in Chesterfield at all now, Jessops went in big shake up but had turned into a photo booth anyway, LCE lease ran out so they buggered off! Sad.
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