Development of new technology for our digital cameras moves ahead at a fast clip with the objective of removing current shortcomings.
In this blog post we will take a look at the trends in the following areas, all of which are related to improving auto-focus and making it suitable for movie recording:
- Determining proper focus during movie recording
- Auto-focus motors
- Touch screen focus point selection
Cameras have recently been introduced that feature one or more of these improvements and we are convinced that more and more camera makers will embrace these new technologies. Not only will movie recording benefit, but also still photography, in particular in connection with mirror-less cameras and when using live view with a DSLR.
The reviews, previously sorted by likes and thereafter by date, are now sorted just by date by defaut. Users can additionally choose to sort by likes, rating, or author, with the ability to reverse the order of the results as well. We hope that this new feature makes our equipment databases an even handier resource- enjoy!
Please refer to the screenshot above to familiarize yourself with the placement of the sorting controls. They are found just before the first review on each page.
Last week, rumors surfaced on our forum stating that the Pentax K-5 was slowly being discontinued in Japan, and that several stores were no longer carrying it. Today, as unfortunate as it may be, it appears that these rumors were true, and that the K-5 is indeed being discontinued. We have confirmed with multiple US retailers that the Pentax K-5 lens kit is no longer available, and it is further evidenced by the fact that the Pentax K-5 18-55mm kit is now marked as "discontinued" at B&H Photo Video in New York City. It's no surprise that it sold out first at the largest Pentax retailer, and we would also not be surprised if the Pentax K-5 body were to follow suit in the coming days.
Originally introduced in October, 2010, the K-5 served as Pentax's flagship APS-C DSLR for nearly two years. It was undoubtedly one of the most successful and one of the most-loved Pentax cameras of all time, but that's not to say that it was perfect. Upon the introduction of the mid-range Pentax K-30 DSLR this July, the K-5 started showing its age in many areas, despite being designed to be in a higher price class.
Photokina, one of the world's largest photographic trade shows, is coming up in about one month in Cologne, Germany. We have no doubt that the K-5's successor will be announced there, and we simultaneously hope that this successor will build upon the strong points of the K-5 and improve on it where it was lacking, rather than being an entirely new camera (we will report on this live from the event next month).
Even if a successor is announced soon, however, this discontinuation does mean that Pentax will be down to just one DSLR in its entire DSLR lineup for at least two months. After discontinuing the K-r early this year, Pentax lost their intro-level body, and with the discontinuation of the K-5, they no longer have a high-end body, either. This puts Pentax in a tough situation, and may even end up scaring away prospective users due to the dwindling camera selection. It also means that Pentax has decided to keep each camera's production cycle relatively short, rather than following in the footsteps of other DSLR manufacturers, who keep many of their models on the market far longer. For camera buyers, it will also be a shame that the great K-5 prices won't be around for much longer.
When Ricoh acquired Pentax last fall, they stated that they wanted to become a serious competitor in the DSLR industry. Now, the company is under even more pressure than ever, as both Canon and Nikon are expected to release an intro-level (i.e. affordable) full-frame DSLR at Photokina. If Pentax follows up with an APS-C body at the event and offers no full-frame DSLR in months to follow, they may lose all hope of entering the professional DSLR market. Based on recent trends in the camera industry, it would hardly be surprising if the APS-C DSLR would start being phased out in favor of lineups consisting exclusively of full-frame bodies, with smaller sensors allocated instead for mirrorless and compact cameras.
In celebration of the forum's 2 million post milestone, we are very happy to announce the first part of our "2 million post" giveaway, in which you will be able to win a Pentax K-30 DSLR kit or an Optio WG-2, as well as other great prizes. Our friends at B&H Photo, the largest authorized Pentax retailer in the US, have offered the K-30 as a prize to celebrate this great milestone. And even if you don't win the grand prize, there are lots of prizes for the runner-ups, so be sure see the full rules for more details!
The K-30 is the latest mid-range DSLR from Pentax, featuring a weather-sealed body, enhanced external controls, and cutting-edge performance. Read more about the camera in our in-depth Pentax K-30 review! All of the K-30 giveaway details are available below, so look no further than this news post!
Our K-30 giveaway will be a blog post competition that will remain open for 3 months, through the end of the day on Wednesday, November 14, 2012, EST. During the event period (8/13/2012 - 11/14/2012), you will be able to make two types of submissions to the competition. You can choose to submit one or both types, though submitting both essentially doubles your chances of winning. You will be able to make your submissions as private posts on the forum, which will later be published on the home page by our staff.
The first of two blog posts you will be able to submit is a short piece about what piece of photographic equipment has made the biggest positive impact on your photography or workflow. Each blog post should be about 1 page long (as long as this announcement) in order to be approved for the competition. The piece of equipment you choose to blog about can be a camera, lens, accessory, bag, computer program, or even something you built yourself! Your blog post should include the following:
- An introductory paragraph
- A photo & description of the item that has been the most influential on your photography
- A paragraph describing why this item has made such a big impact
- Sample photos taken with the item you're blogging about, if applicable (otherwise, examples of the item in use)
- A brief conclusion
- Clean formatting & grammar
As long as all of these requirements are met, you're free to use your imagination and make your post look as appealing as possible! Please note: formatting will be limited to what's allowed by forum BBcode (bold, italics, underlines, inline images, links, bullet lists, paragraphs, and tables). Photos may be uploaded using the forum attachment system (preferred), or linked to from an external host.
The second type of contest submission will be a blog post describing the "making of" one of your favorite photos (example post 1, example post 2). We encourage you to take a look at the two linked example posts to get an idea of what the layout of your post should be like. Your post should include the following, and be about as long as example post #1:
- An introductory paragraph stating why you picked this photo
- The photo being discussed, embedded
- The equipment (camera, lens, tripod, flash, post processing software etc.) used
- Technical information about the photo (shutter speed, aperture, ISO, focal length, white balance, etc.)
- A paragraph describing, in detail, your post-processing technique (if applicable), or explaining how you managed to accomplish an effect without processing
- (Optional, but encouraged) The photo before processing, embedded
- Brief closing remarks
- Clean formatting & grammar
We recommend that your posts emphasize the technique used to capture and process the image. Please note that all photos must have thumbnails that are no wider than 600 pixels and no taller than 700 pixels. You may, however, link these thumbnails to full-size images. As with submission #1, formatting will be limited to what's permitted by the forum post editor. Photos may be uploaded using the forum attachment system (preferred), or linked to from an external host.
Once the contest closes to submissions, and once all blog posts have been published, your fellow forum members will vote for their favorite blog posts. Voting will be held exclusively on the PentaxForums.com forum. The number of votes you received for your first submission will be combined with the number of votes received for your second submission in order to determine your overall score, and the participant with the highest overall score will be the winner. The nine runners-up will also receive prizes (see full terms for details).
Note that in order to start the voting period as early as possible, your blog posts may be published on our homepage before the contest closes. Read on for the fine print related to this contest- we've tried to keep it as simple as possible. We wish you the best of luck in this competition!
On June 23, the twelth World Pentax Day event was held on PentaxForums.com. On this day, Pentax shooters from around the world went out to take pictures, and uploaded their favorites to the collective World Pentax Day gallery, thus painting a picture of the world on that day! Uploads closed on July 8th, at which point the gallery became a permanent record of 1,192 photos taken on June 23rd, 2012.
Unfortunately, the launch of the Pentax K-30 got in the way of our posting about World Pentax Day #12 immediately after its conclusion, but better late than never! We invite you to browse the event gallery and rate your favorite photos!
In a few months, we will nominate the top-rated photos to be featured in a World Pentax Day book, similar to the World Pentax Day #11 Book. We will also be giving away several of these books, so stay tuned!
If you participated in June's World Pentax Day event, we hope you enjoyed it, and we're looking forward to seeing you participate in the next event (date to be announced). If you're new to the site, this is an event open to everyone, so we invite you to join in and show your Pentax spirit!
Below is a selection of some of our members' favorites so far:
One of our members' favorite sections of the forum is the Pentax Marketplace, which is essentially one of the largest Pentax classified listings on the net. The Marketplace includes both a "for-sale" and a "wanted items" section, both of which see listings from members from around the globe. We can proudly say that the section is also very safe, with a negligible number of disputes since its debut in 2006. The Marketplace is a great alternative to eBay, as there are no fees for individual listings, and PayPal buyer protection is still available should you choose to pay via PayPal.
Last fall, we added a watch list feature to the main section of the Marketplace, which allowed users to get eBay-style listing notifications based on keywords of their choosing. In order to start using the watch list, you simply need to navigate to the top of the Marketplace for-sale section while logged in.
Today, we're happy to announce that we've expanded the watch list to the wanted items section of the Marketplace, meaning that you can now be notified whenever anyone is looking for something that you're selling! It is pictured below. To access this list, navigate to the wanted items section of the marketplace. Note that in order to use this new list, you need to have access to sell items in the main section of the Marketplace (click here to get access).
We hope our Marketplace sellers find this new feature useful, and if you are new to the site, we invite you to take a look at all the exciting items listed on the Marketplace! Any type of photographic item may be listed on the Marketplace, even if it's not a Pentax!
In the US, the standard 1-year Pentax manufacturer's warranty, which is included with the purchase of any new camera or lens, can seem a bit short at times. We've heard countless stories of users having to send their cameras in for service shortly after their warranty periods had expired, and as you may know, repairs can sometimes end up being quite costly!
It is now official that the extended warranty for the Pentax K-5 and K-r is also valid for the new K-30 DSLR. We highly recommend that you pick one up together with your new camera, as it protects your investment by extending the manufacturer's warranty period by two years, for a total of 3 years of coverage.
The extended warranty must be purchased within 30 days of your camera purchase to be considered valid. In order to file a claim warranty claim, you will need your original purchase receipt, original warranty card, and extended warranty card. As long as you conform to this 30-day restriction and purchase your camera from an authorized retailer (most online stores outside of eBay are fully authorized), your camera will receive the additional warranty coverage, and will also be eligible for 1 check-up & cleaning at any time during the warranty period.
What makes this offer difficult to pass up on is the price- just $19.95! Currently, we have only seen the extended warranty at B&H and Adorama (NYC-based authorized retailers), but if you see it offered anywhere else, please let us know in the comments section!
We're happy to announce our latest review, which is a three-way comparison of the SMC Pentax-DA 17-70mm F4, Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC OS HSM Macro, and Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4.5 DC Macro. Originally meant to be just a two-lens comparison, we decided to initially hold off with publishing the review and instead expanded it to a three-way comparison to include both the old (F2.8-4.5) and new (F2.8-4) versions of the Sigma 17-70mm (as evidenced by the thumbnail above!).
17-70mm lenses offer a very versatile zoom range which we recently recommended in our Pentax K-30 lens guide. So, which of the three 17-70mm lenses available for Pentax cameras is the best?