Many Pentaxians will be aware that Bruce (Bramela) Stephenson from Newcastle, Australia, has been an active Pentax Forums contributor since 2007- shortly after the site was launched- participating in numerous competitions, games, challenges, and discussion threads. He has also served as a Forum Moderator over the course of the past several years, and he has been a huge help to the Forum in that role.
Today, we are sad to inform the community that Bruce has fallen very ill. He was rushed to hospital earlier this week with inoperable stomach cancer and doesn't have much time left.
He is in remarkably good spirits though and together with his wife Pam, he is drawing great strength from his faith and family. In typical form, he has asked that no fuss be made. More than that, he has specifically requested that his best wishes and thanks be passed on to his Forum friends all over the world. Photography is his passion and the Forum enhanced it mightily for him.
In keeping with his request, private messages to him via the Forum would seem a nice way to wish him well; his wife has already drawn comfort from a couple of early PMs and she can choose when it is best to pass on more to him.
Also in keeping with his request that no fuss be made, arrangements are already in hand to have a nice bunch of flowers delivered to Bruce with a simple, no-names card just wishing him the best on behalf of his Forum mates. Flowers are one of Bruce's passions as a photographer, home gardener and volunteer worker at his regional Botanic Gardens.
In many places it is traditional for us to chip in on such occasions but this is impractical for all sorts of reasons in the circumstances. Instead, it seems a good opportunity for individuals to consider donating something to a cancer charity in their own area. Or, if “Movember” is currently being run in your town, perhaps sponsorship of someone you know, on Bruce's behalf, might be fitting. We're pretty sure Bruce would be greatly cheered by this.
As a sign of our appreciation for Bruce, we will be dedicating Monday, November 11th as a day to honor him in this month's Single in November photo thread. We invite everyone to post a flower photo for Bruce on that day, since flowers are his passion. The photo can be taken on the 11th or before: it's no matter. Click here to post a photo for Bruce to see!
Farewell and thanks for everything, Bruce! You will be missed on behalf of the whole Pentax community.
This summer, Pentax announced the K-50, a redesigned outdoor DSLR that delivers lots of advanced features at a great price. Since then, we've published our in-depth review, and just last week Adorama posted some sweet deals on Pentax K-50 bodies and kits.
Now, it's time for us to put this great camera in your hands! We're happy to announce that:
We are giving away two Pentax K-50 DSLR kits!
By spreading the word about the K-50 and doing a number of other simple tasks through the widgets below, you can earn up to 50 raffle tickets to win one of the two cameras. In order to give everyone a fair shot at winning, we are hosting two separate giveaways with a wide variety of ways to enter. Entering will only take a few minutes of your time!
We would like to thank Adorama Camera in New York for sponsoring this giveaway.
The first giveaway allows you to enter simply by reading about the K-50, checking it out at Adorama, and sharing information about it, among other tasks. See the widget below for details:
Our second giveaway mainly designed for users of Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus. Earn chances to win by Liking us and Adorama on Facebook, inviting a friend to enter the giveaway, or sharing information about the K-50 with a friend.
You can of course enter both giveaways, so have at it! Good luck!
Learn more about the K-50:
In order to better reflect the outdoor nature of Pentax digital cameras and DSLRs, we would like to announce that effective immediately, PentaxForums.com will be adapting a new "umbrella" logo, pictured above. This is in part to celebrate the fact that all current Pentax DSLRs, namely the Pentax K-5 II, K-30, and 645D, are fully weather-sealed and thus ready to shoot anywhere, rain or shine!
Together with the new logo will also be adopding a new slogan, which reads "we've got you covered". This phrase fully embodies the spirit of our forum. Since we launched the site in 2006, our mission has been to provide the ultimate community for Pentax beginners and old-timers alike.
In 2011, in order to offer extra help to beginners, we launched our Pentax Camera Help Central, which includes the Beginner's Corner Q&A and General Technical Troubleshooting sub-forums. Virtually no questions are ever ignored in these two forums, and of the 7,500 threads that have been posted, less than 1.5% are left unanswered. Furthermore, each question gets an average of ten replies.
That same year we also launched dedicated sub-forums for current Pentax camera models, and these sub-forums are now among the busiest sections of the forum, with hundreds of new posts being submitted each day. We currently feature sub-forums for the Pentax K-5/II/IIs, Pentax K-30, Pentax K-r, Pentax Q, and Pentax K-01.
While we think we're already doing a very good job of being accomodating for just about any type of photographer, if there's anything we can change to do an even better job of "having you covered", we welcome any suggestions in our site suggestions forum!
As 2012 comes to a close, let's take a look at the highlights of this year in the Pentax world and on our web site!
We'll start by looking at Pentax's camera systems. While Pentax hasn't delivered the breakthrough products that many enthusiasts have been hoping for (i.e. a full-frame DSLR or new high-end APS-C camera), overall, it has been a great year, and Pentax is doing better than ever. Most notably, the Pentax K-30, launched this June, has proved to be a very successful upper entry level DSLR.
In addition to becoming popular thanks to its intuitive user interface, superb image quality, and weather sealing, the K-30 ended up winning the iF Product Design Award just last week! If you're a beginner that has a budget of around $650-800, we can highly recommend the K-30 as a first DSLR or as an upgrade over older Pentax cameras. The K-30 competes primarily with the Nikon D5100/5200 and the Canon 650D, and we've recently posted an in-depth comparative review of these three cameras in case you're still trying to decide on what to get.
Another noteworthy camera is the mirrorless Pentax K-01, launched in February. Thanks to its K-mount, the K-01 was the first mirrorless camera to natively support DSLR lenses. At first, the K-01 didn't get too much attention among photographers due to it's bold design and $749 price tag, but after being reduced to just $316 in November, it's been selling like crazy! At this price it truly is a steal, considering that its image quality is almost on par with that of the Pentax K-5 and Nikon D7000 at a fraction of the price.
Finally, Pentax should also be commended for the expansion of the Q system: now that the 15-45mm (~80-250mm eqv.) telephoto zoom and the K-mount adapter have been launched, the Q has become a much more versatile camera, allowing photographers to use it for much more than everyday snapshots. Pentax will be stressing that one should look at the entire system, and not just the Q camera body, when deciding to get a compact mirrorless. On top of that, now that the Q has fallen in price by up to 75% (from a launch price of $799 to approximately $250), it has become a much more attractive option for many Pentax fans outside of Japan.
Your hard-working PentaxForums site owner and administrator was spotted on Christmas Day in the Salt River Canyon in Arizona.
He was on a somewhat dubious mission trying to shed light on the often made claim by our Pentax Q users that the Q + K-mount adapter + K-mount telephoto lens betters an APS-C or even a full-frame DSLR for high-magnification telephotos!
Besides the rig from the dark side we also spotted a Pentax K-5 in the arsenal.
Now we're anxiously awaiting the results! Does the $600 Q outfit buy you more than a $6,000 outfit from the dark side?
Stay tuned for Adam's findings when he reemerges from the Canyon!
Today we'd like to wish everyone who's celebrating a very Merry Christmas! We'd also like to thank everyone for a very fun and successful year on the site, and we look forward to continue bringing you quality content and many new features in 2013! We will be kicking off the new year with live coverage of the CP+ trade show in Japan (which is bound to bring exciting new Pentax announcements), so stay tuned!
One of our forum members has already started a thread in which you can share what you got or gave for Christmas, so after you've opened up all the goodies, we'd like to invite you to post about what you received and what you gave.
This Black Friday, there will be endless Pentax deals, so stay tuned to our homepage for everything you need to know about savings on Pentax cameras and lenses in the US!
Here on the site, we're launching our special deal a little early: you can get unlimited forum attachment space, Marketplace access, and much more gallery & album space for the fraction of what it normally takes! This means that you'll be able to upload as many photos as you'd like, and sell as much of your old gear as you want for free, without any listing-based fees.
Click here to get unlimited attachment space & extended marketplace access!
(Make sure you are logged in before clicking the link)
Once you're on the above page, select the first option and the duration of the upgrade you would like (1 or 2 years). You can then proceed to complete your account upgrade securely using either PayPal or 2Checkout (credit card). Account upgrades will be applied instantly and automatically.
In addition to this, we will be offering 1 year of free Marketplace access (but not unlimited attachment space) to anyone who supports us by shopping at B&H or Adorama during Black Friday. Click here for details! Normally, such upgrades only last for 1 month, so be sure to take advantage of this if you plan on getting some new gear this weekend! If you take advantage of the unlimited attachment space offer, we will extend your account upgrade by an additional year if you shop at our affiliates during the Black Friday weekend.
Did you know that many modern Pentax lenses have been sold under the Samsung brand? We have now eneterd all Samsung and Schneider-Kreuznach K-mount lenses in our Third-party Pentax Lens Database. This database is not only for technical specifications, it is also is open for member lens reviews.
Samsung had a brief stint marketing K-mount DSLR cameras based on Pentax models. The last one was the GX-20 introduced in 2008, and shown in the illustration above. It was based on the Pentax K20D, which, as a part of this cooperation, had a Samsung-manufactured sensor.
Back to the lenses marketed by Samsung: they ended up having a total of eight rebadged Pentax lenses for their Pentax clone DSLRs. Initially the lenses were branded as Schneider-Kreuznach lenses under an agreement with that German lens manufacturer. These lenses would have the Schneider-Kreuznach name engraved around the front lens or at the lens barrel and be called D-Xenon (DA clone) or D-Xenogon (D FA/FA clone). The accessories (lens hood and lens cases), however, all had the Samsung name, and the Pentax-DA lens derivatives would also sport the Samsung name on the name plate on the left side near the lens mount. Somewhat of a branding mess.
Over time the Schneider-Kreuznach name got replaced with Samsung, and in some cases the D-Xenon/D-Xenogon label vanished, too, and was replaced with Samsung.
It has not been possible these many years later to find out with certainty which lenses were introduced initially under the Schneider-Kreuznach name and if they all made the transition to the Samsung name. We are also short on photos of the lenses; if you own any of these please forward photos to one of the administrators for inclusion in the database. Of particular interest are photos that show the engraved name on the front and near the lens mount.
Here is what we've learned after doing a little bit of research: