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Thread: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

  1. #1

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    Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    Maybe I'm the last to know, but I just found out that Arca-Swiss has stopped making the Discovery. The dealer from whom I bought mine doesn't know why. Does anyone here know when this happend, and/or the reason? The Discovery is a terrific camera, and this strikes me as a real shame. Looks like the least expensive Arca-Swiss now available is about US$3.000.

  2. #2
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    They might have been unable to compete with the second-hand market at that price point. Maybe it just doesn't make sense for them to produce an entry-level camera in the age of the eBay.

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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    i believe that they stopped producing the 171 frame... and they reserve the 141 for the top of the line !

  4. #4

    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    Wow, this would be a bummer. I've always thought the Discovery was one of the best values for the money of any new LF camera. It had all the quality of the more expensive ARCA-SWISS models and was fully compatible with the full line of ARCA-SWISS accessories, but was affordable enough to serve as an excellent entry level camera. I often wondered how ARCA-SWISS could produce such a high quality camera at such a reasonable price - especially with the way the dollar has declined vs. the euro over the last six years.

    Kerry

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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    When you figure out Arca's management decision-making logic, let me know. You shouldn't have any trouble figuring out the female gender or metaphysics, much less where the Holy Grail is.

  6. #6
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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    Frank - Your sense of humor is wonderful !

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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    The idea behind Discovery, as I understand it, is that it gave people a chance to buy into a high quality camera system, at an attractive price, the payoff being that those people would continue as Arca-Swiss customers and eventually buy additional Arca-Swiss modules.

    Indeed, I found out about the apparent discontinuance because I am extremely happy with the camera and I am thinking of buying additional modules. As part of that, I wanted to know what the Discovery is currently selling for. To my surprise, I found that none of the usual dealers is offering it and that it is no longer available. The dealer who sold me one did not say "it is out of stock"; rather, he said "I don't know why they have stopped offering it." The Robert White and Badger Graphic websites not longer mention it, and B&H lists it as "discontinued".

    If Arca-Swiss wanted to, it could easily replace the 171mm Discovery with a 141mm Discovery, and for that matter raise the price somewhat. But apparently it is not doing that.

    This doesn't affect current Discovery owners (one either wants to convert to the 141mm standard or not, and in my case I don't see the point - it looks to me like a pretty overt exercise in decreed, arbitrary obsolesence), but it will unquestionably have an impact on people, including students, who are entering large format and for whom the new base Arca-Swiss price tag of US$3,000 is a significant disincentive. Perhaps they intend to offer the more expensive camera to students, with proof of registry in a photographic institution, at a discount? If so, I wonder whether it is wise, in the current large format market, to write off people like myself who are not students, but who want to use large format.

    Pesonally, I would never have purchased an Arca-Swiss had the Discovery not been available. The result is that I have become a loyal Arca-Swiss customer (despite what I think of this 141mm business) who is considering buying additional modules.

    The decision of Arca-Swiss to reject the strategy that brought me, and others, to the Arca-Swiss brand is certainly interesting. I guess I'm curious to know the answer to the question: Why?

  8. #8
    SatinSnow
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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    Quote Originally Posted by r.e. View Post
    The decision of Arca-Swiss to reject the strategy that brought me, and others, to the Arca-Swiss brand is certainly interesting. I guess I'm curious to know the answer to the question: Why?
    Have you wrote them and asked? There could be any number of reasons to discontinue a certain product and the best place to get the answer is from the company that made the choice to discontinue it. Who knows, perhaps they have a new model in the works for the near future.

    Dave

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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    Dave,

    Yes, as I said, they may have a new approach in the works. But if so, they have apparently neglected to tell their dealers, or at least the one that I use, about this new approach.

    As for writing Arca-Swiss, read Mr. Petronio's post Communication is not their strong suit.

  10. #10

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    Re: Discontinuance of Arca-Swiss Discovery

    nowadays it becomes easy to find a second hand Fline 171...

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