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09-07-2011, 08:37 AM   #136
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QuoteOriginally posted by johnmflores Quote
Put a bellows on it (teflon or otherwise) and the only people that will buy them are sexagenarians and porkpie wearing hipsters.
What, you wouldn't consider a 240mpx folder for US$2k?

09-07-2011, 09:48 AM   #137
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
But another Pentax trait is a willingness and ability to keep things on the back-burner for a long time until the technology and marketplace is ready for them to achieve what they want. The 645D and the Q are a case in point - both sat in the Pentax labs for a LONG time until the right sensor etc came along for what they wanted to achieve.
Ah yes, the five-year Q program myth. Funny how we heard so much about the 645D for all those years, and saw mockups and then later functional prototypes and even pre-production models. And then nothing at all about the Q other than a sketch and a blown up GIF about three months before it was announced.
09-07-2011, 09:55 AM   #138
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QuoteOriginally posted by uccemebug Quote
Ah yes, the five-year Q program myth. Funny how we heard so much about the 645D for all those years, and saw mockups and then later functional prototypes and even pre-production models. And then nothing at all about the Q other than a sketch and a blown up GIF about three months before it was announced.
I think it probably has been there for awhile. I also think that Pentax has several full frame prototypes that they have worked on over the years that they will launch when they think the time is right.
09-07-2011, 11:43 AM   #139
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QuoteOriginally posted by johnmflores Quote
Put a bellows on it (teflon or otherwise) and the only people that will buy them are sexagenarians and porkpie wearing hipsters.
Wrong.

It would depend on the price.

09-07-2011, 12:09 PM   #140
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Wrong.

It would depend on the price.
So at what price do you think a bellows camera would become a more popular item?
09-07-2011, 12:09 PM   #141
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
What, you wouldn't consider a 240mpx folder for US$2k?
If it was $2k, I'd ask them to throw in the porkpie hat for free.

Last edited by johnmflores; 09-07-2011 at 01:32 PM.
09-07-2011, 01:04 PM - 1 Like   #142
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
Good points. The quirky strategy certainly maintained sales and market visibility without requiring too much R&D expense.

But another Pentax trait is a willingness and ability to keep things on the back-burner for a long time until the technology and marketplace is ready for them to achieve what they want. The 645D and the Q are a case in point - both sat in the Pentax labs for a LONG time until the right sensor etc came along for what they wanted to achieve.

It is entirely possible that the same thing may be happening with their full-frame plans. They built a FF prototype a long time ago but judged that the sensors and other technology at the time were not great so they didn't launch a product. Maybe now they may be feeling differently, particularly if Sony is cooking up newer, cheaper, better FF sensors that they may be able to use.
Agree. I also suspect Pentax has a FF project on the backburner, waiting for the right circumstances and the right mix of specs.

It's hard though to tell what that right mix ought to be. If I were Pentax and reading this thread, the impression I get would be there is no clear consensus on what sort of full frame camera would appeal to the (limited sample size) of the users of this forum.

Producing a camera that can compete directly against Canon and Nikon pro models (the K-1?) - that would require a lot of money and frankly I am not sure Pentax is capable of it even if they had the money. Just in the area of AF, even though the K-5 has improved over previous models, anyone who has used the high end Canikon gear will attest that the K-5 is not in the same league and I am not sure what Pentax can do - I get the feeling the K-5 represents the best they can tweak their existing AF mechanism to and they will struggle to find further improvements without a completely new design, SDM Mark II etc.

A full frame equivalent of the K-5 (K-3?). That won't require a lot of cost or time to design, and would appeal to users with legacy FA glass. Would it be able to compete? I doubt it - K-5 features/specs with a full frame sensor would be distinctly underwhelming. That sort of model is more likely to lose street cred rather than win awards.

A mirrorless full frame accepting FA glass? Intriguing, but again likely to meet with a mixed reaction. I can already imagine the scorn that some users on this forum will pour on it.

A pellicle mirror design like Sony? Hmm, even more quirky and even more of a mixed reaction.

A Leica like rangefinder? Sorry, but Pentax doesn't have the brand goodwill that Leica has - I used the M9 for a few weeks and it's a mediocre camera with a mediocre sensor - the only redeeming feature is the amazing quality at base ISO with Leica glass.

If Pentax do produce a full frame (in any of the above variants), I will probably buy it (only because I own FA glass), but then hey I also find the Q exciting and planning to buy it, and I think we've already established I am not the "norm" in my buying preferences. :-)

With the resources that Pentax apparently has poured into the Q, yes arguably they could have made a full frame camera. But the Q is a bolder move, and arguably smarter. It remains to be seen whether the market Pentax believe exist for the Q is truly there. Early signs are encouraging - there's a healthy level of interest in the first week of release in Japan even in the environment of a very likely severe recession as a result of the earthquake/tsunami/nuclear reactor leaks. And the camera itself is a typical Pentax product - quirky, yet with surprisingly good image quality.

Last edited by Christine Tham; 09-07-2011 at 01:10 PM.
09-07-2011, 01:11 PM   #143
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QuoteOriginally posted by uccemebug Quote
Ah yes, the five-year Q program myth. Funny how we heard so much about the 645D for all those years, and saw mockups and then later functional prototypes and even pre-production models. And then nothing at all about the Q other than a sketch and a blown up GIF about three months before it was announced.

Ofcourse they kept it quiet for 5 years. Imagine, 5 years of debating how bad the Q would be, they just wanted to avoid that

09-07-2011, 01:19 PM   #144
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How do you make the case for Full frame over APS-c?

Canon EOS 5D vs. Canon EOS 20D — Full-Frame vs. APS-C sensors - photo.net

Compare a 12.7 mp FF camera to a 8.2 MP camera , then upsize the 8.2 image to make them the same size. Total crap. And really, for both of those cameras, niether of them stacks up to Pentax 645D, or comes even close. The argument that you get more limited depth of field on a FF is moot. Most of the time, getting more DoF is the issue, not less. SO, that could be a plus. Most of the time in these comparisons, you are comparing sensors, not FF or APS-c. Apparently the K-5 sensor is pretty good. Is there an FF sensor that can match it?
09-07-2011, 01:27 PM   #145
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Is there an FF sensor that can match it?
Calm down ))))
Check the dxomark.com, check where the D3x is, and where the K-5. And this two year difference. Newer FF sensors will own these APS-C, especially we know the newest APS-C from both sony and samsung have almost no advantage over that 16Mp sony.
09-07-2011, 01:35 PM   #146
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QuoteOriginally posted by Emacs Quote
Calm down ))))
Check the dxomark.com, check where the D3x is, and where the K-5. And this two year difference. Newer FF sensors will own these APS-C, especially we know the newest APS-C from both sony and samsung have almost no advantage over that 16Mp sony.
haven't you been saying for I don't know how long that you didn't want the K-5 replacement because the new samsung sensor would be so much better?
09-07-2011, 01:38 PM   #147
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QuoteOriginally posted by Macario Quote
haven't you been saying for I don't know how long that you didn't want the K-5 replacement because the new samsung sensor would be so much better?
It's better, but the difference is not as significant as I expected.
Looks like they've just reached the limit.
09-07-2011, 01:42 PM   #148
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christine Tham Quote
I also suspect Pentax has a FF project on the backburner, waiting for the right circumstances and the right mix of specs.

It's hard though to tell what that right mix ought to be.

Producing a camera that can compete directly against Canon and Nikon pro models (the K-1?) - that would require a lot of money and frankly I am not sure Pentax is capable of it even if they had the money. I get the feeling the K-5 represents the best they can tweak their existing AF mechanism to and they will struggle to find further improvements without a completely new design, SDM Mark II etc.

A full frame equivalent of the K-5 (K-3?). That won't require a lot of cost or time to design, and would appeal to users with legacy FA glass. Would it be able to compete? I doubt it - K-5 features/specs with a full frame sensor would be distinctly underwhelming. That sort of model is more likely to lose street cred rather than win awards.
Always a fan of you. Again some nice pointers here.

Is there some idea on a FF in Pentax R&D? Yes i think so.

Is it easy to get the right camera everyone is waiting for? No I don't think so.

Is it easy to make such a high-end camera? No it's not! Otherwise we would have seen some chinese knock-off camera on the market long ago. It is hi-precision technics and Pentax is one of the few company's that has enough knowledge onboard to run an advanced dslr system. Is it enough to make the next step and reach a more advanced level? I'm also not sure about this. But knowledge can be rented and bought and if Ricoh wants to make that next step then it can be done.

Funny part of your last statement is that the awardwinning 645D is nothing more then a K-7 with a larger sensor in a new housing. Proving that it can be done! On the other hand I would like to have on several levels to have a more advanced K-1 then 645D ever was till today.
09-07-2011, 02:13 PM   #149
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I checked the the image ratings on the D3x and the K5. The entire difference is in low light performance for sport.

The Color depth is 24.7 to 23.7 a slight win for the D3x, the Dynamic Range is 14.1 to 13.7 for the K5. Pretty much a saw off if you don't shoot Low Light. Looking at teh price difference I wonder how many photographers would pay 4 or 5 times as much for an extra 800 ISO, when the trade off is less Dynamic Range.

Simple fact is.. the D3X doesn't really stand out over the K5 in 2 of 3 categories and is behind in one.

22mm 35 and 44mm sensors... my take is that 35 is the odd man out. People who want lighter lenses and more convenience will go APS-C. Those who want the highest number of MP and most control of DoF will go 44. 35mm sensors will be the red haired orphan. The D3X doesn't compete with the 645 at what it's good at,or the K5 at what it's good at. What's left is an excellent high ISO performance. That's one of the three rated areas on DXO and not the most important one to many photographers, it's a niche camera... not a thrilling endorsement of it's future.
09-07-2011, 02:26 PM - 1 Like   #150
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christine Tham Quote
Producing a camera that can compete directly against Canon and Nikon pro models (the K-1?) - that would require a lot of money and frankly I am not sure Pentax is capable of it even if they had the money.

A full frame equivalent of the K-5 (K-3?). That won't require a lot of cost or time to design, and would appeal to users with legacy FA glass. Would it be able to compete? I doubt it - K-5 features/specs with a full frame sensor would be distinctly underwhelming. That sort of model is more likely to lose street cred rather than win awards.

With the resources that Pentax apparently has poured into the Q, yes arguably they could have made a full frame camera.
I think your K-3 example is a perfect start to Pentax full-frame. Like you said, a d3x-like Pentax FF is out of the question from a technical standpoint and not something I would personally want or be able to pay for at the moment.

I think they can do FF in a way that it isn't underwhelming, just like they have done with the K-7/K-5. The K-5 itself was the child of the K-7, which was a camera that really didn't do any magic things, but was a full package of quality form and function when they released it. It had everything in a good balance to remove $$$$ from my checking account after being happy with my *ist DS for a good 5 years or so. The K10D had a small blip in my radar when it came out, but once I held it, it just didn't fit for me. The K-7 on the other hand... I tried it out at a local camera store (it had a grip attached) and instantly put the idea in my head that I will eventually need to buy the camera no matter what. It was that good of a photography tool compared to anything I had used in the past. I knew about what it could do given the technical reviews, but using the camera for a few minutes was the breaking point. I think if Pentax can capture that for a moderately powerful FF camera with great ergonomics, they would do well with it.

Pentax does not really have any street cred with "pro" photographers, so I don't see that as anything to care about. Unless it's an utter flop in ergonomics and technical sensor quality (output results), I don't see a problem at all. The 645D is like 1.1fps and slow-ish AF, but the final results are there front and center. I see a Pentax FF as being an enthusiast FF, just like the K-5/K-7 are to the market. Similar to where the 5D and D700 are. It doesn't have to be a technological powerhouse, but it needs to be a well rounded (small & quality ergonomics) package.


I'm personally on the middle of the road with the Q. I see positive aspects, but at the current price and lacking a few Pentax features (WR, that K-mount adapter prototype, hopefully an electronic version of that adapter too) I can't part with the asking price. I do agree it is fitting with Pentaxian engineering/marketing. Same goes with colors/special editions they have done for a long time.
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