Wednesday, December 19, 2012

First Small Price Drop On The Panasonic 35-100mm

Panasonic has instituted the first small price drop (a scant $50) on the new 35-100mm lens. I'd say that it's funny to watch Panasonic hunt and paw its way through the dark with its product pricing, but since I'm actually invested in m4/3, it more just pisses me off.

The 12-35mm has been selling slowly. Not so slowly as to call it a catastrophe, but certainly not with any exciting speed. This is partly expected — the lens is very expensive, and even in Cankon's systems, the expensive lenses sell with less vim and vigor. And if the numbers that I am gleaning from discussions with resellers and the number of reviews online had been achieved without sudden, large price discounts, I would say that I was wrong and Panasonic's pricing strategy was correct.

Only that's not how things are going. My local resellers had the lens sit on the shelf until they lopped $150 (or more) off the price. Even on Amazon, we saw similar large discounts straight from Panny, with the lens inexplicably dropping $200, then gaining it back, then losing $150, the gaining back $50. Used examples sell for well under $1,000, with many dipping below $900.

It seems that Panasonic's strategy is to drop the price, sell a bunch of lenses, and then increase the price, thinking that the early sales will cause some sort of "momentum." Or perhaps they want to sell the lens, but maintain that it is still "premium," with this charade of a pricing scheme. This is stupid.

The 35-100mm appears well on track to follow the same strategy. Not a single example  of the 12-35mm that I know of has sold for MSRP. I'm sure some have, but I don't know them. The 35-100mm similarly won't sell. Stop fucking around, Panasonic, and price these lenses at something the market is willing to accept.


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