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06-05-2013, 11:16 PM   #1
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Is the 645D refresh nearly here?

According to this thread https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-price-watch/227117-645d-k-30-crk-ebay.html CR Kennedy, the Australian Pentax distributor, is selling off its 645D demonstration units (The listing does call them demonstrator units but doesn't say who owned them). If ti is Kennedy's selling them it could be that they have decided to give up on the 645D or maybe they have worn out the bodies and are replacing them with new ones or maybe, just maybe, the 645D refresh is nearly ready and they want to get rid of them before the price drops further. Given that the K50 arrived without any teasers or substantial leaks it would seem that Ricoh prefer the Apple approach of total secrecy prior to launch so a new 645 could arrive without warning.

06-06-2013, 12:04 AM   #2
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I just read it as being refurbished and didn't add anything else to it. I assumed it was second hand and had been given a full recondition. Am I correct in saying that since the additional two new 645d lenses have come out there has been no high quality k mount lens (17-135 not high quality in my books)

Just looked at pentax Aus (also CR Kennedy) and its price has dropped to 8 grand with lens same type of qualification ex demo. maybe you are right. https://www.crkennedy.com.au/pentax/index.php?q=node/294
06-06-2013, 04:07 AM   #3
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I see no reason why the current 645D would not sell along the new 645D.
Halving the price for the current spec'd 645D would open 645D in general to a whole range of new customers.
06-06-2013, 04:23 AM   #4
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Manufacturing capability may be and issue though.

06-06-2013, 05:17 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by VisualDarkness Quote
Manufacturing capability may be and issue though.
Leica had loads of KAF sensors used in the original M9, and is still using them today. They still use 200K LCDs on their premium compacts (X1, X2), which is unbelievable, but Leica like. I think production of two 645Ds is not an issue; if Leica can manage far more complex M240, M9-P and M-E (rangefinder assembly itself is very complex and needs thorough manual checking), I somewhat think Pentax Ricoh can handle two lines of 645D with no problems.
06-06-2013, 06:38 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Leica had loads of KAF sensors used in the original M9, and is still using them today. They still use 200K LCDs on their premium compacts (X1, X2), which is unbelievable, but Leica like. I think production of two 645Ds is not an issue; if Leica can manage far more complex M240, M9-P and M-E (rangefinder assembly itself is very complex and needs thorough manual checking), I somewhat think Pentax Ricoh can handle two lines of 645D with no problems.
Well, you still need space, equipment and personnel for a second line. All of them costs a large amount of investment money to even get started. Add to that an increased stream of products meaning faster and more complex handling of the good, everything from packaging to distribution. It's like juggling and add a fourth ball.
06-06-2013, 03:28 PM   #7
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For specialty cameras such as the 645D, production many not be constant but done in runs of X number of units. Certainly simultaneous production lines would not be required to fill market needs and one production crew, already experienced with the present version, could easily handle a new version consisting primarily of a sensor and associated internal electronics update. It's not rocket science.
06-06-2013, 03:44 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by CDW Quote
For specialty cameras such as the 645D, production many not be constant but done in runs of X number of units. Certainly simultaneous production lines would not be required to fill market needs and one production crew, already experienced with the present version, could easily handle a new version consisting primarily of a sensor and associated internal electronics update. It's not rocket science.
Well that is is true, but then you steal time from other models. Though it's only speculation as I haven't worked in a Pentax factory and don't know the intensity or clock times.

06-06-2013, 05:34 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by VisualDarkness Quote
Well that is is true, but then you steal time from other models. Though it's only speculation as I haven't worked in a Pentax factory and don't know the intensity or clock times.
Luckily, today's hi-tech factories and assembly lines are not those from the Charlie Chaplin film. They are highly organised and quick changeover is a built-in principle into them, it's not some futuristic notion.
06-07-2013, 03:55 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bob from Aus Quote
I just read it as being refurbished and didn't add anything else to it. I assumed it was second hand and had been given a full recondition....>
I´am writing from the other end of the world (Germany) .
Some weeks ago here also droped the prices for "Demo" labeled 645D Sets from 9999€ to 6999€ (sometimes there are special offers down to 6500).
_ may be it´s a price reduction towards the mayor competitor (Nikon D800E + lens)
_ or it is a sell out before the new 645D II appears.
who knows
06-07-2013, 04:06 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Uluru Quote
Leica had loads of ... I somewhat think Pentax Ricoh can handle two lines of 645D with no problems.
Don´t forget medium format (MF) is a minor market. About 6000 cameras/a . Mamiya/PO should have about 40-45% of the market, Leica says they have 20%. The rest (40%) is 2400 cameras the year. I think Hasselblad has from this piece the major part . (The rest is Pentax, alpa, DHW-Rollei Hy and Twins, Voigtländer Bessa I+II, Linhof,.....)

May be Pentax is building the 645D in patches, or just in time after order (like Nikon does with the F6). In both cases I don´t believe in two lines.

Last edited by veraikon; 06-07-2013 at 04:21 AM. Reason: Typo
06-07-2013, 09:13 AM   #12
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Two other data points;

- lensrentals is now offering the 645D; so there may have been some change to the pricing they got to help clear out channel/dist inventory

- that magazine article that had a road-mappy calendar with a 645D-II plopped on top of June. I don't think they meant June as much as mid-year.

I'd like to see more on this; the K5 is great for most of what I do, but with a 645 I could leapfrog over FF for certain kinds of work that isn't framerate intensive. The current generation isn't compelling compared to a D800.
06-08-2013, 01:23 PM - 1 Like   #13
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The current generation isn't compelling compared to a D800.

If you're referring to the current generation 645D, I along with many other owners who have compared the outputs of both camera, would tell you the current version is more than compelling compared to the D800. I had an opportunity to shoot an 800 for a month and did a number of comparisons. I almost always preferred the IQ of the 645D over the 800. I shoot landscapes so others might find the 800 better suited for fast action, weddings, etc. My personal opinion is the differences between a CMOS and CCD sensors are part of the reason many medium format shooters, myself included, prefer the look of CCD sensors vs CMOS. But one of the most compelling reasons I selected the 645D was the fact I had shot Pentax 645n film cameras before going digital a few years ago. I still owned all of my legacy lens for the 645 system, making it an inexpensive proposition to move to the 645D. Conversely, the number of Nikon lenses up to the task of resolving the D800 sensor capabilities are somewhat limited, if you believe reports from others. At the very least the cost of outfitting the D800 with lenses up to the body capability, is likely to be far more expensive than buying used legacy lenses for the 645D.

06-08-2013, 02:09 PM   #14
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I'll do more comparisons, then, it's nice to hear another more positive experience about the IQ. And coming from a K10D, I know what you mean about sensor differences.

But you also nailed the other thing that for me makes it a harder call. The price is equal given glass in the equation, but the performance for non-MF functionality on the D800 is a nice plus. Right now I 'need' to buy two bodies; an MF-ish one, and whatever comes after the K5 for low light / high frame rate for event shooting. The D800 sounded like a good fit for both. The 1Dx is nice (for example) but lacks resolution in comparison.

Perhaps a current gen 645D is compelling after all.
06-08-2013, 03:31 PM - 2 Likes   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by CDW Quote
The current generation isn't compelling compared to a D800.

If you're referring to the current generation 645D, I along with many other owners who have compared the outputs of both camera, would tell you the current version is more than compelling compared to the D800. I had an opportunity to shoot an 800 for a month and did a number of comparisons. I almost always preferred the IQ of the 645D over the 800. I shoot landscapes so others might find the 800 better suited for fast action, weddings, etc. My personal opinion is the differences between a CMOS and CCD sensors are part of the reason many medium format shooters, myself included, prefer the look of CCD sensors vs CMOS. But one of the most compelling reasons I selected the 645D was the fact I had shot Pentax 645n film cameras before going digital a few years ago. I still owned all of my legacy lens for the 645 system, making it an inexpensive proposition to move to the 645D. Conversely, the number of Nikon lenses up to the task of resolving the D800 sensor capabilities are somewhat limited, if you believe reports from others. At the very least the cost of outfitting the D800 with lenses up to the body capability, is likely to be far more expensive than buying used legacy lenses for the 645D.

+1. I considered the D3x (pre-D800) before I bought the 645D; the cost of lenses quickly made the Nikon more expensive and eliminated the possiblity of a larger sensor in future cameras. Nikon is stuck at 35mm FF and the strain on the lenses is showing. In contrast, the Pentax 120mm outresolves the 645D sensor and can be had for $400-800.
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