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04-03-2016, 07:53 PM - 13 Likes   #1
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my 1-k words about the K-1

If every Pentax owner had submitted their “FF” dreams in order of priority, recognizing that a 36×24 sensor and supersized SR must fit inside and a K mount on the front, the result would look a lot like the K-1. In fact it’s hard to imagine a better implementation of the Pentax Theory of Capturing Light. It has every feature of recent APSc bodies (many updated with valuable improvements), adds new features and prices them well below most Pentax owners’ dreams.
Bravo Ricoh!

My Imaging History
I had owned the ME Super since 1980 and the Program Plus in the ‘90s, along with my hiking companions the smc-M 24-50/4 and that 40mm pancake, and had no real issues with them (missing the low-battery alert in ’96 was entirely my fault). I also rolled it into a high Sierra creek once, and it worked perfectly again 24 hours later! Later that year I took it to be inspected and no issues at all were found – a testament to Pentax ruggedness and the pristine waters of Tully Creek.

Once the digital era began I dabbled in small-sensor cameras like the Kodak LS443 and Lumix DC40, but soon I learned that only a large sensor can duplicate the subject isolation and low-light subtleties. I spent two years of research before choosing a Sony A200, and only after the local salesperson failed to make my smc-M40 work on his Pentax body. Once Sony began to dismantle the Minolta DNA, reintroduced two awful A200 ‘updates’ and began to add special effects and‘translucent’ mirrors (and allow the talented A700 to fade away) I returned to Pentax, now fully aware of the ‘Aperture Ring Permitted’ setting that makes classic lenses sing.
I’ve used nearly every recent dSLR that Pentax has delivered: K100d, K200d, K-7, K-x, K-r, K-5 (both Classic and IIs), K-01, K-S1 and now the K-50. In each case some pleasant surprises have emerged (yes even the K-S1, which surprised me with its size and excellent 20Mpx sensor). Each of them has reinforced the Pentax penchant for value and durable construction that I remember from the past plus electronic and firmware innovation that the digital era has brought.

My Imaging Future?
I was certain that my future was with APSc cameras. I had tried cameras with sensor sizes down to 1” and decided that the gear that fit me best used the 24×18 sensor. The endless chant for 36×24 was intriguing to me but for me to choose a kit that would add 50-100% more bulk over my K-50 did not seem reasonable. I was perfectly happy and felt no urge to bend with the “FF” rumors.

Then the K-1 showed itself. And it shook me.
• More SR sensitivity? Hadn’t really thought about that side effect of up-sizing.
• A customizable Info-button screen? Wow, never thought to complain about that!
• LED lights on the body? Another forehead-slapping idea.
• Screen dimmer for night shots? My forehead is turning red from the slapping.
• Updated Pixel Shift mode? What - it can be better? Cool!
• ISO max of.. saythatagain? Golly that’s a big number.
• A crop mode that isn’t? Really? Somebody will let me decide how to crop DA lenses??
• Improved AF? What again? Oh and it clusters nicely in the APSc frame, great idea for my 55-300!
• Viewfinder overlays? Yes please, another excellent update!
• And all the updates the K-50 missed, like Clarity & 86k metering analysis – well of course!
This list keeps going at my ‘blogsite, more K-1 camera comparisons

Throw in the actual size and weight, which are less than I expected, and it’s capital-C Compelling.
In spite of my APSc-forever certainty I flung myself into the Full Frame and fact/rumor forum sections, adding tuppence at times and learning more about the third dial, the Martian Artifact tilt-screen (makes me think of HG Wells’ devices, is that just me?) and WiFi features. Tethering, 5-axis tilt screen and WiFi are not high on mywant/need list, but I’m glad they are there for others’ use. Heck I personally started a few K-1 threads! For a camera I was sure wasn’t for me.

What is happening to me?!?

Easy answer: the K-1 happened, to me and to all camera owners.

No doubts were left after the R-Pentax reps spoke about the K-1 creation. It was made primarily with Pentax users in mind. Ricoh doesn’t really care about other companies – though the others will care a little since their profit margins just got thinner. Ricoh set out to make the best Pentax camera it can, right now - and did so without worrying about other manufacturers. That feels like a wise choice to me!

So for now I am still happy with my K-50. I have my focal lengths covered from 10-300mm (15-450mme) with Pentax zooms, and I have several nice primes and a couple of manual zooms that do well too. The K-1 will not have a big effect on my near future, that I’m a happy (and not wealthy) Pentax APSc user.

But the game has changed.

Many here will be stepping up very soon, and we’ve seen many new Forum users appear. The old questions return again (what’s that rattle? Will this K mount lens work?) and we answer them again, with all the patience that waiting for the K-1 taught us. One of the greatest features of the K-1 is that Pentax is a name to be reckoned with in many major formats – even the Qs count!

My favorite K-1 feature is the updated SR.
My second favorite feature is the PENTAX logo on this camera.
Oh to be standing at an event with a K-1 around my neck, silently pledging my allegiance over all the ‘better’ camera makers on display.

It's funny - I’ve never really felt like a Pentax public advocate before but the K-1 is that special, and its impact that big for me.
Surprise..?


04-03-2016, 08:53 PM   #2
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Now this is a post that is fun to read. Let's see how long the thread goes before the vid-ee-oh crowd craps on it.
04-03-2016, 09:05 PM   #3
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Well written and enjoyable read.
04-03-2016, 09:08 PM   #4
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Thanks Jim - you echo a lot of my thoughts about the K-1 too. I can't wait for it to arrive.

04-03-2016, 09:25 PM   #5
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Thanks for the post Jim ... although it does not help to follow my plan of staying with APS forever
04-03-2016, 10:43 PM   #6
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Well written Jim.
I think a lot of us have gone through a very similar thought process. I was very pleasantly surprised with the K-1 feature set versus a very good price.
My budget demands I have to hold off buying it for a while but its going to be hard to do.
04-04-2016, 12:24 AM   #7
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Looks like a lot of people who formerly ditched FF, and said they would never buy one, (because they just didn't believe that we will see one and because they wanted to feel safe)are now going to give up their next 2 vacations just to buy one... funny
04-04-2016, 12:43 AM   #8
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I love my K3 and both my K5's, the image quality is all I could ever have asked for and more. I bought the 60 - 250 and the 150 -450 because I wanted good glass with the Pentax name on it. I was intending to sty with APSC for ever. I have owned Pentax cameras since the 1970's, from the K1000 to the MZ-5. I stubbornly stayed with Pentax, even when I thought they were losing the plot (green, pink, yellow cameras, Video, small, UGH!).
I have always liked the robustness and useability.
I recently pre-ordered the K1. Why? All of the above

04-04-2016, 02:35 AM   #9
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Braco Jim. We've been wainting ten years for this and you captured the dream.
04-04-2016, 07:05 AM   #10
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Great post!
04-04-2016, 07:06 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by jimr-pdx Quote
If every Pentax owner had submitted their “FF” dreams in order of priority, recognizing that a 36×24 sensor and supersized SR must fit inside and a K mount on the front, the result would look a lot like the K-1. In fact it’s hard to imagine a better implementation of the Pentax Theory of Capturing Light. It has every feature of recent APSc bodies (many updated with valuable improvements), adds new features and prices them well below most Pentax owners’ dreams.
Bravo Ricoh!

My Imaging History
I had owned the ME Super since 1980 and the Program Plus in the ‘90s, along with my hiking companions the smc-M 24-50/4 and that 40mm pancake, and had no real issues with them (missing the low-battery alert in ’96 was entirely my fault). I also rolled it into a high Sierra creek once, and it worked perfectly again 24 hours later! Later that year I took it to be inspected and no issues at all were found – a testament to Pentax ruggedness and the pristine waters of Tully Creek.

Once the digital era began I dabbled in small-sensor cameras like the Kodak LS443 and Lumix DC40, but soon I learned that only a large sensor can duplicate the subject isolation and low-light subtleties. I spent two years of research before choosing a Sony A200, and only after the local salesperson failed to make my smc-M40 work on his Pentax body. Once Sony began to dismantle the Minolta DNA, reintroduced two awful A200 ‘updates’ and began to add special effects and‘translucent’ mirrors (and allow the talented A700 to fade away) I returned to Pentax, now fully aware of the ‘Aperture Ring Permitted’ setting that makes classic lenses sing.
I’ve used nearly every recent dSLR that Pentax has delivered: K100d, K200d, K-7, K-x, K-r, K-5 (both Classic and IIs), K-01, K-S1 and now the K-50. In each case some pleasant surprises have emerged (yes even the K-S1, which surprised me with its size and excellent 20Mpx sensor). Each of them has reinforced the Pentax penchant for value and durable construction that I remember from the past plus electronic and firmware innovation that the digital era has brought.

My Imaging Future?
I was certain that my future was with APSc cameras. I had tried cameras with sensor sizes down to 1” and decided that the gear that fit me best used the 24×18 sensor. The endless chant for 36×24 was intriguing to me but for me to choose a kit that would add 50-100% more bulk over my K-50 did not seem reasonable. I was perfectly happy and felt no urge to bend with the “FF” rumors.

Then the K-1 showed itself. And it shook me.
• More SR sensitivity? Hadn’t really thought about that side effect of up-sizing.
• A customizable Info-button screen? Wow, never thought to complain about that!
• LED lights on the body? Another forehead-slapping idea.
• Screen dimmer for night shots? My forehead is turning red from the slapping.
• Updated Pixel Shift mode? What - it can be better? Cool!
• ISO max of.. saythatagain? Golly that’s a big number.
• A crop mode that isn’t? Really? Somebody will let me decide how to crop DA lenses??
• Improved AF? What again? Oh and it clusters nicely in the APSc frame, great idea for my 55-300!
• Viewfinder overlays? Yes please, another excellent update!
• And all the updates the K-50 missed, like Clarity & 86k metering analysis – well of course!
This list keeps going at my ‘blogsite, more K-1 camera comparisons

Throw in the actual size and weight, which are less than I expected, and it’s capital-C Compelling.
In spite of my APSc-forever certainty I flung myself into the Full Frame and fact/rumor forum sections, adding tuppence at times and learning more about the third dial, the Martian Artifact tilt-screen (makes me think of HG Wells’ devices, is that just me?) and WiFi features. Tethering, 5-axis tilt screen and WiFi are not high on mywant/need list, but I’m glad they are there for others’ use. Heck I personally started a few K-1 threads! For a camera I was sure wasn’t for me.

What is happening to me?!?

Easy answer: the K-1 happened, to me and to all camera owners.

No doubts were left after the R-Pentax reps spoke about the K-1 creation. It was made primarily with Pentax users in mind. Ricoh doesn’t really care about other companies – though the others will care a little since their profit margins just got thinner. Ricoh set out to make the best Pentax camera it can, right now - and did so without worrying about other manufacturers. That feels like a wise choice to me!

So for now I am still happy with my K-50. I have my focal lengths covered from 10-300mm (15-450mme) with Pentax zooms, and I have several nice primes and a couple of manual zooms that do well too. The K-1 will not have a big effect on my near future, that I’m a happy (and not wealthy) Pentax APSc user.

But the game has changed.

Many here will be stepping up very soon, and we’ve seen many new Forum users appear. The old questions return again (what’s that rattle? Will this K mount lens work?) and we answer them again, with all the patience that waiting for the K-1 taught us. One of the greatest features of the K-1 is that Pentax is a name to be reckoned with in many major formats – even the Qs count!

My favorite K-1 feature is the updated SR.
My second favorite feature is the PENTAX logo on this camera.
Oh to be standing at an event with a K-1 around my neck, silently pledging my allegiance over all the ‘better’ camera makers on display.

It's funny - I’ve never really felt like a Pentax public advocate before but the K-1 is that special, and its impact that big for me.
Surprise..?
Jim, nicely said. I always wanted a FF Pentax and now it is almost here, and it looks like it was worth the wait! From using large format and medium format, I know a larger image/frame/film size offers other advantages with DoF, etc. We can now take better advantage of it.

However the image size means larger file size, so now we need more memory cards with more capacity. Oh well! Get something, give something!
04-04-2016, 08:19 AM   #12
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Great positive note Jim. I am really excited about the new full frame and have high expectations about it. I think that it will be quite successful and Ricoh will be able to fund more than one body type as well as begin to increase the stable of FF lenses and hopefully begin to take a plunge on offering more options regarding their flash technologies. Right now I'm looking at perhaps a fall purchase of the K1 to go hand in hand with my K3II.
04-04-2016, 09:19 AM   #13
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I wish everything would become so clear to me. I remain conflicted. . .

The one "system camera" that I am fully committed to right now is the Q7. I have the Premium Kit plus the 03 fisheye, K-mount adapter, AF201FG flash. . . I didn't plan to use it as my primary camera, but things happened, and I ended up doing this. It's been a while now, long enough to learn my way around it, and I've pushed the little thing to its maximum, and the result has been generally good. I really adore it, but I'm not unaware that it does have some limitations. So, I'm pondering what my more serious, higher-specified system camera is going to be.

The K-1 is definitely in the top three, but Olympus and Fuji also have products that would lure me away. The Fuji X-T1 is the most attractive in many ways, but costly, and I would be starting from zero and making a big commitment with all-new lenses, and I haven't even laid hands on one. The OM-D I've had mixed experiences with: sometimes great, sometimes frustrating. The K-1 body is expensive, but would allow me to immediately use my existing, um. . . hodgepodge of cheap and outdated K-mount lenses.
04-04-2016, 10:02 AM   #14
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Very nice write up Jim. As others have said, I think you did a great job of relaying the feelings of many.

BTW - If you really want to wake people up to the Pentax brand go to your local little league baseball game with a 645D and the 80-160 zoom!! You can clearly read that Pentax from quite a long way off.
04-04-2016, 10:09 AM   #15
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every new features that you mentioned in K-1 will most likely appear in the next APSC flagship camera as well.

So if you really like APSC format like you said, you can still stay with it.
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