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01-03-2013, 06:13 AM   #1
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K mount

A idle question...

Given that the K mount goes back to FF film days wouldn't there be advantages, at least optically, if Pentax had designed their APs-C cameras from the ground up for this sensor size?

I'm especially thinking of the lens mount.

Just wondering.....


Last edited by wildman; 01-03-2013 at 07:08 AM.
01-03-2013, 06:24 AM   #2
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The MZ-D was a FF. The *ist D has a FF mirror box. The problem then, and still is, is that APS-C is much cheaper to produce than FF.

The MZ-D used the same sensor as the Contax N Digital. That camera put Contax out of business...

Pentax MZ-D - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

01-03-2013, 06:48 AM   #3
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I presume they could have reduced the registration distance in accordance with the smaller mirror, allowing bodies to be slightly thinner.
01-03-2013, 07:31 AM   #4
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Nope. Registration must be the same for a given system to be able to correctly use older lenses, no matter the sensor/film area.

01-03-2013, 07:46 AM   #5
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If Pentax changed their lens mount with the digital cameras, abandoning their legacy users, they would be out of business. They don't travel the strength of market that canon had when canon did this twice to its users
01-03-2013, 08:39 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
If Pentax changed their lens mount with the digital cameras, abandoning their legacy users, they would be out of business. They don't travel the strength of market that canon had when canon did this twice to its users
I fully agree. I went from a Pentax film SLR to a Pentax dSLR based in part because I could bring my best old glass (and a few other accessories) to the new camera.

Another example... I absolutely loved (still do) my PalmOS based PDAs. But I needed to move forward. Palm literally abandoned all its PalmOS users when 64bit computing went mainstream giving their loyal customer base the following options:
  • don't upgrade - either your PDA or your PC
  • upgrade to a WebOS based device and simultaneously replace every application with a WebOS version (and it's likely we don't have a functional replacement for every app yet)
  • upgrade to a WebOS based device and simultaneously pay half the price of the new device for a slow, quirky 3rd party PalmOS emulator that might run some of your old apps.

Because I had to replace everything anyway, I did some hard shopping and abandoned Palm just like they abandoned me and all those other loyal customers.
A year later, Palm was dead.
01-03-2013, 08:59 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
If Pentax changed their lens mount with the digital cameras, abandoning their legacy users, they would be out of business. They don't travel the strength of market that canon had when canon did this twice to its users
I agree completely. Canon is into a lot of products and can survive a drop in sales in regards to cameras. Pentax is still in business today because of the K mount.
01-03-2013, 09:02 AM   #8
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Yes, I often think it would have been smart to go to M43 and re-introduce the P-110 lenses.
M43 is same sensor size as P-110
Those lenses are small and maybe lower cost because the diaphragm is in body.

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01-03-2013, 09:09 AM   #9
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As usual I rather botched the post and was not clear.

I understand all about the legacy stuff.

My question was how much better, if at all, could the APS -C camera's be if they were designed from the ground up for that format without the limitation of having to accept legacy glass. After all the decision to accommodate legacy glass is a marketing decision not necessarily a technical design decision.

I am assuming a price was paid somewhere in optical performance or in some other performance way - but maybe not.

That's the question.

Has any other maker done exactly that - designed specifically for APS- C format?

Last edited by wildman; 01-03-2013 at 09:34 AM.
01-03-2013, 09:44 AM   #10
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Manufacturers have certainly designed mounts for APS-C mirrorless. like the Samsung NX:

Samsung NX-mount - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

But the K mount, with its longer registration distance that clears a 24x36mm mirror,
has a big advantage over mounts with a shorter registration distance, even on APS-C,
namely that wide angle lenses are telecentric,
and so give better coverage of the edge of the APS-C frame.

If Pentax marketed the K01 concept properly,
they could emphasize this advantage,
instead of letting K mount mirrorless appear like a kludge.
01-03-2013, 03:34 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
Has any other maker done exactly that - designed specifically for APS- C format?
Sony E-mount - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Canon EF-S lens mount - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (EF-S lenses will damage a Canon FF so it's close enough)

Last edited by boriscleto; 01-03-2013 at 03:40 PM.
01-03-2013, 04:18 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Giklab Quote
Nope. Registration must be the same for a given system to be able to correctly use older lenses, no matter the sensor/film area.
I think you missed the point of the (hypothetical) question!
01-04-2013, 07:41 AM   #13
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I got the point alright. Hypothetically, yes, they could (and probably would) have designed everything to be smaller, but realistically, you get compatibility problems with older glass plus you need another system for FF.
01-04-2013, 02:56 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
Thanks for that.

Looks like the Sony NEX 7 is the cutting edge of a "pure" APS-C Camera for the time being.
But it looks a little strange to me with this anemic little body with those huge lens' on it.
Kind of defeats the purpose of the body design.

With all the improvement in sensors going on maybe the APS-C will, in the long run, prove to be a dead end.
FF for quality and something like the NEX 7 but based on a smaller more advanced sensor - the perfect little street shooter. Small, (both body and lens') fast flexible and responsive with decent quality and excellent ISO performance. Something Bresson would be using if he were alive today.

I guess I'm still looking for a replacement for my 1955 Nikon S2.

Last edited by wildman; 01-04-2013 at 03:10 PM.
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