I talked to Erik Birger for about 20 minutes today.
He appreciated my non-confrontational tone (perhaps because I let him know I have a broken collarbone and my urgency for immediate dates may be less than for some...) and was very accomodating and generous with his time and willing to share lots of info.
He's avoided DVXuser because of the negative, ugly tone things had taken on here.
He's not willing to give hard release dates (but did give rough timeframes), but there are plenty of highlights (of the pleasing sort)-
- NAB- he'll be there with "final, production" Canon EF adapters for the AF100, F3 and FS100. This is concrete.
- Users can play with the camera/adapter combos!
- He'll release the F3 adapter first, then the AF100, then the FS100.
- He hopes to release the F3 adapter before NAB, the AF100 after NAB, "within a few weeks of NAB." Not concrete, but very likely.
- He's using a midwest US foundry (which does automobile machining) to machine the stainless steel- it's two pieces of solid stainless- a piece for the brains and a piece for the lens mount.
- "Everything is about form following function."
- He's "having a 2-way conversation with the camera manufacturers" so everything turns out right.
- Price- the same $700-800 (the orginal price "plus the cost of a hamburger at most") for the base aperture unit.
- $400-500 for the FF unit.
- You will need rails for the FF unit but not for the base unit.
- He's taking "a much needed vacation" then there will be more details in 4-5 weeks.
- He regrets announcing and missing deadlines last year, but has stayed quiet and avoided sharing info he is sure of because of some of the folks here.
- He reminds us that's he's "not taken a single penny from a single dealer or customer."
- He's "excited" and wants it done right because his "two and four year old kid's college educations are riding on this."
- He'll be selling "through pro dealers only" and recommends getting it through the company you got your camera from because "it's about customer relationships and not about lowest price."
- He said Boston Camera and Abel Cine were still among the dealers he would work with, along with some others.
- He "knows how many AF100s have been sold" (and won't say) and will be turning out about 100 adapters/day.
- Several user/blogger types will get production models to test drive and review in the real world.
FYI re- dealers: I called Abel, got a very angry salesperson- he didn't want to discuss the Birger adapter, said they're not accepting deposits. He said they'll have people at NAB and go from there.
Called Rule Boston Camera, spoke to Jeff. He said they had a waiting list last year but have discontinued it, and are not accepting deposits. He did, however, take my info.
I hope I got everything right here- I scribbled some illegible notes...
I know we've been down this road before, and yes, call me foolish or naive if you must, but I'm looking forward to late April, wish I was going to NAB!
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02-21-2012 03:18 PM
Last edited by groveChuck; 02-22-2012 at 05:44 AM.