Ricoh Is Developing a new Pentax Flagship APS-C DSLR

Ricoh Is Developing a new Pentax Flagship APS-C DSLR

Ricoh has announced the development of a new flagship APS-C Pentax DSLR to be launched in 2020, with a preview of the camera being shown soon at the Pentax Meeting 100th Anniversary Special in Japan.

Ricoh has given almost no details about the camera besides that it will be a K-mount DSLR with an APS-C sensor and will be launched in 2020. Their last camera release was the minimally updated Pentax K-1 Mark II, and many have been wondering if Pentax was slowly petering out. I personally was a big fan of the Pentax K-1 when I reviewed it; it is really a photography nerd's camera, full of numerous fantastic and neat features paired with a great sensor. Pentax's cameras have a small but fiercely loyal following, and they will surely be quite pleased to hear that the company is still pushing forward with camera development. It is not entirely clear if the company will also be developing some new lenses for the camera. They did mention that they think a fair amount of mirrorless users will eventually return to DSLRs, so it would not be surprising if they also plan to invest in developing new lenses. Either way, it is certainly great news for fans of the brand. 

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Marcus Joyce's picture

"Where's the affiliate link to pre order" said no one ever

I'm ready to pre-order !!

clearly you don't know anyone.

A digital 6x7 reboot might do well

Eric Salas's picture

Not sure if you can call it a “flagship” when you’re just waving your hands on the side of the road with a sign promoting a car wash...

user-244549's picture

Is there a camera announcement this year that has people less excited than this one? Maybe Trump will make some MAGA pinhole cameras to give Pentax a boost?

Rob Mitchell's picture

They missed the memo about DSLR being a think of the past? ;)

Rob Mitchell's picture

Tongue in cheek comment downed by a fanboy? whats your take on it then Karim? :p

Sorry, I did not reply as soon as I did that, as something come up and I had to go, but to say that mirrorless is the future and DSLRs are out, would be to totally ignore the few disadvantages of mirrorless, and the few advantages of the OVF.

They currently both have their place, and will continue to both have their place, until (and if) the EVF can overcome these limitations.

Also, did not notice the smiley face, until I saw your reply calling it a tongue in cheek comment.

Also,… Fanboy?!? Try pragmatist. I have no illusions about Pentax. I am on record saying that if I had to start over, (and money was no object), I would buy Olympus, (and not because it is mirrorless, but despite the EVF). The pragmatic truth is, bang for the buck, Pentax (system) cannot be beat, (by another system), and I am tired of proving that by showing the kit values.

Tom Reichner's picture

It seems odd to me to see the terms "flagship" and "APS-C" together. "Flagship" normally refers to the very best product that a company has to offer. If the very best camera they have to offer is on par with the mid-range cameras that other companies have to offer, that doesn't speak well for them.

Too many “ifs.”

The fact of the matter is that Canon, Nikon, and Sony, all have two flagship cameras, (D-type and F-type), as did Pentax for awhile.

Also, do not compare cameras, but systems. The Canon and Nikon fanatics cannot accept that their flagship systems cannot compete on features or price with Olympus, Pentax, and Sony systems.

Tom Reichner's picture

Canon has two flagship cameras? I think of the 1Dx Mark 2 as being Canon's flagship camera. They do not yet have a mirrorless camera worthy of flagship designation. So I am not sure which other Canon you are referring to when you say that they have two flagship cameras.

If you took the time to go to the Canon (USA) website, and search with, “[EXPERIENCE LEVEL → advanced],” it becomes interesting. I rarely go there myself, having no personal interest in Canon. but shortly after posting this, a friend looked and said that their were only two series listed for advanced; 1D X, and 5D. (Not as how I remembered).

Since seeing your reply today, I went and found four series listed; 1D X, 5D, 6D, & 7D series.

However, if you use their “Product Assistant,” and select, [Camera → Interchangeable Lens Camera → “I shoot at a professional level and need outstanding performance and durability,” → “I need my camera to capture a range of subjects,”] then one of the systems listed as fitting the need of such a professional is the EOS R.

OTOH, if you really want to go down the, «…odd to me to see the terms "flagship" and "APS-C" together,” route, one can say, “It seems odd to me the terms, ‘36×24,’ and, ‘flagship,’ together….” Oh, snap! My bad. Canon does not make a 645 DSC. Still, it is not the size of the ship, it is the motion of the ocean, and there are flagship APS-C systems, and flagship MFT systems out there which give stellar professional performances.

I mean, let’s face it. The 1D X mk II has only a 20Mpx sensor, still has an OLPF, has only 21 cross-type AF points —bunched around the middle of the frame— that are f/8 compatible down to EV -3.†

† …Except when using the Canon EF 50mm f/2.5 Macro, EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro, EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM, EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM and EF 28-80mm f/2.8-4L USM lenses, where f/8 compatibility at EV -3 fails, according to the Canon USA website.

You see, the 1D X is a sports photography “flagship” camera, not designed for other genres. That EV -3 f/8 compatibility works great with all their sports lenses, but sucks on GP and macro lenses. The 5DS R is designed for the photographer who needs detail, but is not designed for speed. It only works down to EV -2 with only 1 cross-type AF point at f/8. One cannot simply say that such-and-such a camera cannot possibly be called, “flagship,” because it does not have {feature x}.

Tom Reichner's picture

"Flagship" simply means the one that is atop all others. By definition, there can only be one flagship. It would behoove one to do a bit of research on the history and definition of the word "flagship", and then one will come to realize that if the word is used correctly, it can only refer to one thing within a fleet or a system, not multiple things.

So many good articles are ruined by a slight semantical misusage of a term. That is sad.

Atop all others… in its class.
Pentax had three flagships, 645N, K-1 II, & K-3 II. Like I suggested, comparing the 645N with other “so-called flagships” when they are only 36mm sensors?!?! If you think that that notion is silly, then so is the notion of assuming that an APS-C sensor (or MFT) cannot be flagship.

So many great articles are ruined by a slight limitation of the use of a term to either historical meanings, or other false limits.

[EDIT] Besides, is the low res, high frame rate EOS 1D mk II above or below the high res, low frame rate 5D mk IV? One has to define atop. We can go by highest MSRP, if that is what you mean, but then I would say, unless one is a sports photographer, the Canon “flagship” pales in comparison to all the others. [/EDIT]

Spy Black's picture

Pentax has always given a great bang for the buck. I suspect Ricoh is waiting for refinements in mirrorless tech to join the mirrorless fray which, unless Ricoh plans to shut down Pentax, will be an inevitable path they'll need to take.

The sun is setting on the DSLR, and in 3-5 years the DSLR will be over. If Ricoh keeps Pentax, they're probably be another year or two away from a Pentax mirrorless.

Excellent. Can't wait to see what they come up with.