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01-02-2012, 06:35 PM   #1
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Mirrorless 645D?

There are whispers that such an idea is being tossed around. Make sense to get rid of the mirror. Probably similar to Mamiya or Fuji set up a la rangefinder. Perhaps a bit cheaper. Any thoughts?

01-02-2012, 06:50 PM   #2
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Yeah, that was in the Impress Japan interview with the person from Pentax. Although he said it was just his desire. That's a pretty big goof up if it really was only his desire to say that in a big interview though...

I think it could be a really interesting product, but of course it will still be very expensive and not many people could afford it. I'd like to see it cheaper than the existing 645D. Considering the loss of expensive optical and mechanical parts, I can't see why it would cost more.

If it is mirrorless, we can assume it will have full-time live-view in the form of an EVF. Otherwise it would need a rangefinder style VF, which is really unlikely.

The registration distance is around 2.8 inches (70.87mm). So I think they could get a decent size reduction by removing the OVF and mirror, but keeping the mount as is.

I think it would be a toss-up if they would change the mount or not. 3 Inches isn't too bad, but they could probably do the new mount + adapter thing if they wanted. I would assume the adapter would have full support for AF, so it would probably be an expensive add-on if they go that route.

It's certainly something that a lot of people with the cash could have an interest in. Talk about a small powerhouse of a camera...
01-02-2012, 09:03 PM   #3
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It won't be a rangefinder--too expensive and too difficult to keep aligned and calibrated.

CCDs do not really support live view and so it would have to be a MFD CMOS chip of which there are none available. The sensor development will be the largest cost--Pentax uses a tried and true chip that is in many other cameras, which kept the cost down.

They can easily keep the mount and make the camera very much smaller--the CCD is deep within the body and that could shift most of the controls and electronics around the area around the mirror box. The 645D follows the film 645 design, but it does not need the space for the roll film inserts.
01-03-2012, 12:53 PM   #4
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Well what problem is going to be solved by making it mirrorless?

- Are lenses getting cheaper?
- Is there a bigger market for such a sysytem then current 645D?

01-03-2012, 01:08 PM   #5
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Might be a cool idea for the future- sensor technology still needs to evolve a bit, though.
01-03-2012, 01:14 PM   #6
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There would still be a mirror - the light just passes through it to reach the sensor (soaking up some light in the process) instead of the mirror moving out of the way, which gives the light a clear path to the sensor. I've not been impressed by Sony's mirrorless cameras this past year - not only due to the decreased light hitting the sensor, but also because it adds two more surfaces to collect dust, and these mirrors are hard to clean.

I would much rather see them develop a shutterless camera for these big sensors - shutter vibrations are still an issue during some exposures. A mirror is not an issue since it can be locked up and out of the way before the exposure - of course that doesn't work well when hand holding!
01-03-2012, 02:21 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by jwoodland Quote
I would much rather see them develop a shutterless camera for these big sensors - shutter vibrations are still an issue during some exposures. A mirror is not an issue since it can be locked up and out of the way before the exposure - of course that doesn't work well when hand holding!
Really? I have no problem with the shutter in my 645D and I can easily hand hold it at 1/60s and that is with the mirror being released at the same time. When mounted on a tripod I have seen no issue at all. Maybe it is your tripod or tripod head?
01-03-2012, 02:47 PM   #8
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I guess I have different standards than most folks, although DigiLloyd also confirmed this when he put the camera through his tests - shutter shake is a real issue with medium format cameras and focal plane shutters when you are concerned about absolute critical sharpness. My Phase One 80mp back/camera combo is so bad that I have to shoot at several seconds or longer in order to minimize the shutter shake (I never use fast shutter speeds, so I guess this is more of an issue for me to begin with). My tripod/head/technique are fine - it's the big shutters. A shutter-less camera would eliminate this...

01-03-2012, 03:04 PM   #9
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If an image is sharp, how do you get it more sharp? Well, I have absolutely no problem with the 645D shutter and I am concerned with sharpness. Maybe it is your body--you don't seem to shoot with a 645D as you can't put a Phase One back on it.
01-03-2012, 03:19 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by jwoodland Quote
There would still be a mirror - the light just passes through it to reach the sensor (soaking up some light in the process) instead of the mirror moving out of the way, which gives the light a clear path to the sensor. I've not been impressed by Sony's mirrorless cameras this past year - not only due to the decreased light hitting the sensor, but also because it adds two more surfaces to collect dust, and these mirrors are hard to clean.
Either you are or I am confused. What you have described is the pellicle system which Sony uses in some of its new A mount cameras. However, to my knowledge most mirrorless cameras, such as for example the Sony E mount ones, are ... well, mirrorless.
01-03-2012, 04:07 PM   #11
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Oops, you are correct - I am the one who was confused. I thought the Alphas were being touted as being mirrorless (duh, I now remember they are SLTs), but it is the Nex series...

To yamanobori - I didn't say anything about using a back on my 645D - guess you missed the "back/camera" part ey? I hope it is OK to own more than one camera in this group.

Actually I won't be shooting the 645D for a while - my brand new one is defective and has to go back for an exchange. Great camera, just wish it didn't have a shutter....
01-04-2012, 08:11 AM   #12
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If the sensor is a full size MF 56 x 42 mm. What is the minimum flangdistance that can be used while maintaining all functions of the camera from Ultra Wide Angle to Super Tele?
01-04-2012, 08:19 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
If the sensor is a full size MF 56 x 42 mm. What is the minimum flangdistance that can be used while maintaining all functions of the camera from Ultra Wide Angle to Super Tele?
to go mirrorless would imply a new mount and range of lenses. then it is easy to be much thinner. look at mamiya 6 and 7 (6x6 and 6x7) and the old super 23 (up to 6x9 depending on the back)
my super 23 is about the same depth as my k10 or k7 maybe slightly more

and the bronica and Fuji medium format RF''s are even smaller and de[pending on the model can be from 645 to 6x9

It is one of many Medium format systems that has yet to be addressed in digital (the others being 6x6, 6x7,6x9,6x12 sensors )


Edit did some searching and came up with about 60mm on the Mamiya 7 (it was not an official measurement) which is about 11mm less than the 645D and it covers 6x7 - for comparison the mamiya rb/rz 6x7 are 110 mm, and the Pentax 6x7 is a shade under 85mm

Last edited by eddie1960; 01-04-2012 at 08:29 AM.
01-05-2012, 08:13 AM   #14
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Well, I think that this is where medium format is going too. As mobile as this camera is, despite its bulky looks, what I think this camera lacks is spontaneity. If lighter and thinner and smaller, I think it will add another element to it.

Yes sensor technology needs to go a bit further, but more than the blue print is already there. It isn't like CMOS sensors are still duds. Wouldn't it be interesting if the mount was 67?
01-05-2012, 08:48 PM   #15
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The Sony Nex 7 (review on luminous landscapes - Sony NEX-7 Rolling Review) gives a 'possible' indication to where this all could be going. Fuji is also looking at a new organic sensor (Fujifilm patents hybrid organic/CMOS sensor: Digital Photography Review) which if it works, would be a lot less expensive that existing designs.

Imagine a 6x7cm screen and sensor mirror-less camera system with a built in eye level finder attached to the screen with pop up magnifier. I suppose it would be similar to a technical camera like the alpha, but without the big removable backs. Yes it would require a new set of lenses (including I would hope, a wa shift lens) but they would not have to be huge and the whole system would be a lot lighter than existing designs. How far into the future, I would think sooner than later given the desire and need for lighter and 'relatively less expensive' system. It would still be a pro camera cost of course. Technology seems to be moving ahead in leaps and bounds.
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