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Author Topic: Franke & Heidecke became insovent  (Read 137429 times)
Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #20 on: March 02, 2009, 04:33:21 PM »
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Quote from: klane
I would think Jenoptik will buy them, then they can have the hy6 to themselves shutting down the AFI.  Seems logical.

+1. I hope so. Let's wait and see.
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« Reply #21 on: March 02, 2009, 04:45:56 PM »
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When I heard the news about Thierry being laid off, I had a strong suspicion that Sinar would be exiting the medium format digital business in the near future. That may yet happen, but so far we just know that F&H has filed for bankruptcy. In the US, a bankrutcy filing does not necessarily result in a shut down of operations, but that seems to be the case for F&H. The next question is will Sinar be interested in buying the Hy6/Rolleiflex assets from the bankrupt company? It appears no, because  they probably do not want to double down with a bigger bet on medium format digital and they probably would not have laid off Thierry if that was their strategy. He was one of  their best assets in this business. Does anyone think that Thierry's announcement was NOT connected with the F&H bankruptcy filing? So, who would buy the Hy6/Rolleiflex assets? Leaf/Kodak? No way do I see Kodak doing that. Phase? Very doubtful. They seem very risk averse to me, and they have their bride in Mamiya. (She ain't beautiful, but she gets the job done.) Surely not Hasselblad. Who is left? EPd and Foto-Z? So, the departure of Sinar from the medium format business seems quite likely. Can Leaf be far behind? Very sad, if it comes to that.
As the negative market forces impacting those who make medium format digital cameras and backs continue to accelerate, it becomes more and more clear that a company simply cannot cut it today making just medium format cameras  (and even lenses) at the applicable profit margins. The demise of F&H is an object lesson in that reality. (I guess Hasselblad made the right call back in 2006 with the H3D.) Who knows how it is working out for Mamiya just manufacturing cameras and lenses? Better with Phase than without, but compared to 10 years ago, the unit sales volume of Mamiya cameras and lenses today is probably chump change.
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Bill VN
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« Reply #22 on: March 02, 2009, 04:55:18 PM »
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Something sounds funny if you read the news release. It sounds like F&H may have had some skeletons in the attic that killed the new owner's ability to reorganize. Perhaps, they are being sued by a previous vendor from the Rollei Technic years or a victims organization that realized that the original F&H employed Nazi slave labor in WWII. It is amazing how things can come out of the blue!
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evgeny
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« Reply #23 on: March 02, 2009, 05:07:38 PM »
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1. A company which is not in photo business will buy F&H. Suppose a Japanese investor.
2. Not likely Nikon, Canon or Sony will buy F&H just because they have money.
3. Not likely F&H will became a history.
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Leonardo Barreto
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« Reply #24 on: March 02, 2009, 05:27:40 PM »
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Hy6 is not a viable system because it has no wide angle capability. Hasselblad has a 28mm, Phase/Mamiya has a 28mm Hy6 don't even get to 35mm ! and the 28mm was never even in the pipeline.

Then there is the meltdown of world economy and the availability of 24mp cameras from $2k to $8k with tons of lenses going from fish eye to 1000mm.

PhaseOne and Mamiya are offering the best value, 60mp backs and Capture 1, arguably the best capture software...

Even in pre-crash economy, if you where going to invest $30k on a back, $20k on camera and lenses you consider the viability of the system you are investing in to. Also on the availability of all components necessary to professional work, and that includes moderate to wide angle lenses.

Thierry defended the system the best way he could, but the arguments when in two directions: a) you don't really need wide angle capability  you can get wide view by using larger than 6x4.5 sensors -

I may be getting closer to be able to say I told you so?
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bdp
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« Reply #25 on: March 02, 2009, 05:55:44 PM »
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It would make sense to me if Kodak (Leaf) and Jenoptik (Sinar) would do a deal to financially prop up the manufacture of the camera they both have such a big interest in. They have other deals together, such as the 56mpx back being shared between the two companies.

Ben
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gwhitf
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« Reply #26 on: March 02, 2009, 05:55:54 PM »
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Quote from: michael
I can't speak for other products but I know that the P65+ is now in a backorder situation for months to come because demand has been so high.
Some photographers need and can afford what it offers, others don't.
But, having said that, I do agree that the lower end of the MF industry is starting to suck wind.

I agree with this sentiment. I think you'll begin to see more Top End, and more Bottom End, and less Middle of the Road Beige.

P65, P45; Canon and Nikon. Everything else gets lost in the blur.
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ThierryH
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« Reply #27 on: March 02, 2009, 06:15:49 PM »
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Hi Leonardo,

yes, I said so, and still think so. But I said as well that MOST of the MF users DO NOT need a 28mm lens: when you meet photographers and when you speak with them, the vast majority has no need of it.
However, I would have expected the 35mm to be available in time.

Best regards,
Thierry

Quote from: Leonardo Barreto
Thierry defended the system the best way he could, but the arguments when in two directions: a) you don't really need wide angle capability  you can get wide view by using larger than 6x4.5 sensors -
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Leonardo Barreto
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« Reply #28 on: March 02, 2009, 06:17:54 PM »
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Quote from: bdp
It would make sense to me if Kodak (Leaf) and Jenoptik (Sinar) would do a deal to financially prop up the manufacture of the camera they both have such a big interest in. They have other deals together, such as the 56mpx back being shared between the two companies.

Ben

The system design is better left for extinction since it does not bring anything to the MF format, it is 6x6, when backs are 6x4.5, not cheaper, or lighter. It has no better lenses, but on the contrary, no options for wide angles, and now its survival --this is if it is not completely dead by now -- is in question.

Would you "save" $30k on a bank that is rumored to go under in the near future?  
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bdp
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« Reply #29 on: March 02, 2009, 06:36:59 PM »
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Quote from: Leonardo Barreto
The system design is better left for extinction since it does not bring anything to the MF format, it is 6x6, when backs are 6x4.5, not cheaper, or lighter. It has no better lenses, but on the contrary, no options for wide angles, and now its survival --this is if it is not completely dead by now -- is in question.

Would you "save" $30k on a bank that is rumored to go under in the near future?


In favour of what? A crusty old Mamiya system with recycled lenses from the Ukraine or a closed out Hasselblad system with lenses that needs software correction of their faults? IMO the Hy6 was the only new exciting thing out there in terms of camera hardware.
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Leonardo Barreto
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« Reply #30 on: March 02, 2009, 06:53:42 PM »
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bdp, do you realize you may be defending a dead man walking system?, if so, then:

Show me tests where the Mamiya 28mm is outperformed by a Hy6 lens. Or any other Mamiya lens for that matter.

Hy6 is exciting only on the surface but nothing going in to the future.. that may be the reason why it may not see the future.
 
Quote from: bdp
In favour of what? A crusty old Mamiya system with recycled lenses from the Ukraine or a closed out Hasselblad system with lenses that needs software correction of their faults? IMO the Hy6 was the only new exciting thing out there in terms of camera hardware.
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« Reply #31 on: March 02, 2009, 06:58:41 PM »
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Quote from: Leonardo Barreto
bdp, do you realize you may be defending a dead man walking system?, if so, then:

Show me tests where the Mamiya 28mm is outperformed by a Hy6 lens. Or any other Mamiya lens for that matter.

Hy6 is exciting only on the surface but nothing going in to the future.. that may be the reason why it may not see the future.


OK, perhaps a bit harsh. I expected a flaming  

Ben
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bcooter
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« Reply #32 on: March 02, 2009, 07:07:18 PM »
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Quote from: gwhitf
I agree with this sentiment. I think you'll begin to see more Top End, and more Bottom End, and less Middle of the Road Beige.

P65, P45; Canon and Nikon. Everything else gets lost in the blur.



I liked the idea of the HY6 and think it was a solid system, especially long term if sensors would go to the full frame size of 6x6 and if the lens line had expanded.  

The thing that kept me away from it wasn't the cost.  It was that it is only available for only two makers digital backs.  I feel he same way about any proprietary medium format camera and it doesn't mean I don't think Sinar, Hasselblad and leaf are not good, it just limits the options.

Who would have ever introduced a film that was proprietary to only a few cameras and expected success,  but in theory that is the way medium format digital has been going.

Regardless of the economy medium format is different than Canon vs. Nikon and 35mm.  Medium format needs to grow the segment not just a specific brand.  The moment deals are made, cameras/lenses were sealed off from competitors is just another reason for a buyer to hesitate before investing into medium format, which is the opposite process of building a market.  

Maybe I'm missing something, but prior to digital almost every professional owned a medium format system and few of them sold film to go along with it.  They seemed to do just fine selling cameras and lenses.

Now it seems the opposite that the film (digital back) is what really matters and the cameras are just the incentive to get the photographer to buy a phase, leaf, sinar or hasselblad and if the camera maker doesn't have a digital back they go away.  It makes no sense as I am positive today their are more photographers than any time in the past, so obviously there is more sales possibilities.

Today you don't have to go far to find a professional photographer that owns a dslr, you don't even have to look hard to find one that periodically rents a medium format camera, but ownership seems be less and less of a standard practice.

Personally, I disagree that medium format should lock themselves into only the very high end of the market.   It doesn't build the segment.

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Leonardo Barreto
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« Reply #33 on: March 02, 2009, 07:17:12 PM »
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Quote from: bdp
OK, perhaps a bit harsh. I expected a flaming  

Ben
   I'm thinking to myself "I hope such tests of Mamiya lens inferiority do not exist/materialize". So I should say that probably Rollei/Schneider and all other difficult to spell lens brands are good and some sharper than the Mamiyas (not including the east European probably, but not necessarily) but that is not the point. We are moving in to the future and the ones that survive are not showing scrupulous, for example: Hasselblad. They closed their system and used their 28mm -it shows how important a 28mm is- in order to get some more chips and stay at the table longer. Mamiya went almost dead with their ZD experiment. PhaseOne got in bed with Mamiya and gave its name to off springs that resemble Mamiya 100%...

Probably the next in trouble is SINAR, and Leaf may go down since the two used their turn on a bad hand of cards, they spent money and time on a camera platform when camera platforms where looking for digital backs... How many SINAR backs are going to go of shelves if there is no Hy6? none go to Hasselblad platform since it si closed. So that lives Mamiya. Same with Leaf.

For the rental houses two good brands are all they need, now they have 3 ... who they feel is the less "exiting" system is the key to what happens next...  

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hcubell
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« Reply #34 on: March 02, 2009, 07:53:38 PM »
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Quote from: bcooter
I liked the idea of the HY6 and think it was a solid system, especially long term if sensors would go to the full frame size of 6x6 and if the lens line had expanded.  

The thing that kept me away from it wasn't the cost.  It was that it is only available for only two makers digital backs.  I feel he same way about any proprietary medium format camera and it doesn't mean I don't think Sinar, Hasselblad and leaf are not good, it just limits the options.

Who would have ever introduced a film that was proprietary to only a few cameras and expected success,  but in theory that is the way medium format digital has been going.

Regardless of the economy medium format is different than Canon vs. Nikon and 35mm.  Medium format needs to grow the segment not just a specific brand.  The moment deals are made, cameras/lenses were sealed off from competitors is just another reason for a buyer to hesitate before investing into medium format, which is the opposite process of building a market.  

Maybe I'm missing something, but prior to digital almost every professional owned a medium format system and few of them sold film to go along with it.  They seemed to do just fine selling cameras and lenses.

Now it seems the opposite that the film (digital back) is what really matters and the cameras are just the incentive to get the photographer to buy a phase, leaf, sinar or hasselblad and if the camera maker doesn't have a digital back they go away.  It makes no sense as I am positive today their are more photographers than any time in the past, so obviously there is more sales possibilities.

Today you don't have to go far to find a professional photographer that owns a dslr, you don't even have to look hard to find one that periodically rents a medium format camera, but ownership seems be less and less of a standard practice.

Personally, I disagree that medium format should lock themselves into only the very high end of the market.   It doesn't build the segment.

Whatever the economics behind the demise of medium format camera makers, the reality is inescapable that it's a dead end business. Bronica, gone. Pentax, gone. Contax, gone. F&H, apparently gone. Mamiya, gone but for the intervention of Phase One to prop up its sales after the parent company pulled the plug on the brand. Hasselblad, heading inexorably down that road till the H3D made them vibrant. You see a trend here?
Moreover, if you think it's medium format digital makers who are choosing to surrender the low end of their market in order to focus on the high end, I think you have it all wrong. It's Nikon, Canon and Sony that are forcing them into it by providing feature rich offerings with 25mp that leave internet forums arguing endlessly about who, if anyone, can see the difference in the files between a D3X/1DSIII/A900 and a Phase P30. Most consumers will balk at spending 2x-3x the cost of a great DSLR if they have to do handstands in Photoshop or make very large prints to see the benefits of the P30 file. And that was before the economy fully tanked.
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« Reply #35 on: March 02, 2009, 08:08:04 PM »
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As a lot of people here know,that I just recently sold my Hy6/e75LVr kit.
I wouldn't have sold it if it had a 28 mm lens in the offering.
Yes,I could have gone the ArTec way and spend another $35000,however I opted for a D3x.
The files and the ease of shooting with that camera make my day.
Yes,there is barrel and CA,but at least I can see what I'm doing and shoot fast or slow for that matter.

Do I miss the Hy6?

Of course!

IMO still the nicest MFDB camera out there!

Cheers,
Willem.
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ThierryH
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« Reply #36 on: March 02, 2009, 08:25:47 PM »
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That's absolutely true, Howard.

Not an easy task, as a small player (and Hasselblad, Leaf, Phase and Sinar ARE small players) to compete. Despite all the good intentions and plans, that is a hard battle.

Best regards,
Thierry

Quote from: hcubell
Moreover, if you think it's medium format digital makers who are choosing to surrender the low end of their market in order to focus on the high end, I think you have it all wrong. It's Nikon, Canon and Sony that are forcing them into it by providing feature rich offerings with 25mp that leave internet forums arguing endlessly about who, if anyone, can see the difference in the files between a D3X/1DSIII/A900 and a Phase P30. Most consumers will balk at spending 2x-3x the cost of a great DSLR if they have to do handstands in Photoshop or make very large prints to see the benefits of the P30 file. And that was before the economy fully tanked.
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ThierryH
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« Reply #37 on: March 02, 2009, 09:47:13 PM »
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It's the "season" in Europe: companies' fiscal year ends December 31st, annual company reports are done, board meetings take place following that at the begin on the year, and decisions are taken.

So yes, in the light of this, more likely to follow.

Best regards,
Thierry

Quote from: michael
But likely not the last of the shakeup announcements in the industry that will be seen in the days ahead.

Michael
« Last Edit: March 02, 2009, 09:47:37 PM by ThierryH » Logged

ThierryH
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« Reply #38 on: March 02, 2009, 09:55:14 PM »
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not necessarily, "csp", one has to be strong right NOW already, and nobody knows the situation exactly and how hard everybody is hit already.

Best regards,
Thierry

Quote from: csp
but the positiv side is that this development makes hasselbald and maybe mamiya/phase stronger.
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ThierryH
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« Reply #39 on: March 02, 2009, 11:42:20 PM »
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... and this one has got unnoticed so far:

http://photoscala.de/Artikel/Leica-bekommt-frisches-Kapital

It seems that the banks are holding back and some new fresh own capital has been injected, instead: Euro 9.5 M

Thierry
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