2016 CP+ Pentax Interview

Questions about the Pentax K-1 and other technologies

By PF Staff in CP+ 2016 on Feb 26, 2016

At this year's CP+ show, Ricoh Imaging representatives once again took a moment to sit down with us and answer a number of community questions about the Pentax K-1 and related topics.

Unfortunately, due to disruptive audio tests at the nearby Nikon booth, our on-camera time was cut short.  The remainder of the interview follows the video in paraphrased text form.

Interview Video

Do you have any updates for Pentax Q users?

The Q line is still a current line, but we focused our limited resources on the K-1.  We plan to release the roadmapped Q-mount macro lens in the near future.

Pentax Q lens roadmap

Have you done anything to compel third-party manufacturers to expand their K-mount lineups?

Not at this time.

How does the K-1's video mode compare to that of the K-3?

It is unchanged.

Pentax K-1 Q&A

Is the K-1's focusing screen interchangeable?  

No, it’s fixed due to the presence of the LCD overlay.

Does the production K-1 support a 1:1 crop mode as we saw in a prototype?

No; the supported settings currently include no crop or 1.5x (APS-C) crop.

Does the K-1 use/have an electronic front curtain shutter?  

No; the traditional shutter mechanism is used.

Miscellaneous Q&A

Are you aware of compatibility issues with Image Sync – i.e. failing on certain Android platforms? 

Yes, we are aware.  On some Android versions and some smartphones, there seems to be some connection trouble.  It’s being looked into.

Editorial note: Image Sync is the smartphone app that enables wireless control of Pentax and Ricoh cameras.

What delayed the D FA 70-200mm for so long?  

There was a mechanical design change to create a higher level of optical performance.

Any plans to launch more K-mount accessories like A-type extension tubes?  

No specific product is planned at the moment, but we are looking into possibilities.

Any plans for a Wi-Fi API?  

Not at the moment.

Commentary

The Pentax K-1 has been very positively received, not only among our members but also by other fans around the world.  It's clear that the Pentax full-frame project had been under development for several years, and the last stage of this development required a large chunk of Ricoh Imaging's resources. 

While some of our users might be inclined to believe otherwise, this new release does not imply that other product lines are being discontinued.  K-1 development simply slowed things in other departments, as Pentax's first full-frame body called for brand new hardware in a number of key areas.  The full frame shutter mechanism, viewfinder, sensor, CPU, and shake reduction system had to be specially developed.

Overall, the K-1 appears to be a stellar camera body launched at a highly competitive price ($1799 in the US).  While it's apparent that video wasn't a priority for this camera, we are confident that the K-1 will shine in the areas that matter most to still photographers.  Plus, it brings plenty of innovation to the table with the pixel shift resolution system and unique LCD.  We are looking forward to bringing you hands-on tests followed by an in-depth review once the production body becomes available in April.

It's a great time to be a Pentax user.  Things have come a long way thanks to Ricoh's recent efforts, and if we take a look at the company's product lines, we can without hesitation say that they are more complete and more appealing than ever.   When we published our first CP+ interview back in 2012, Pentaxians only had three K-mount bodies and the 645D to choose from.  Today, there are six K-mount bodies (K-1, K-3 II, K-3, K-S2, K-S1, K-50), two medium format bodies (645Z, 645D), and an all-new spherical product line thanks to the Ricoh Theta.

On behalf of our entire community, we'd like to say "thank you" to the whole team at Ricoh Imaging for giving our users the tools they need to capture the photos they want!

Learn more about the Pentax K-1 in the official announcement, and don't miss our ongoing CP+ 2016 coverage.

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