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09-08-2014, 09:00 AM   #1
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A whole bunch of newbie questions

Quick, sign off, new guy asking questions........

For those of you who are still reading, first off let me introduce myself in the wrong forum (always been a bit of a rebel). I've never shot anything other than 35mm, ironically I started with a Pentax slr about 40 years ago and not touched one since. I've transitioned from the 20D all the way up to a 5DMk2 but also enjoy using a rangefinder and have most recently been using an Olympus EM-1, great piece of machinery without the files to match.

As you can tell I've been disappointed with those files but quite enjoyed the 5D files but lust after the files of the 645Z.

I'm not a big fan of auto anything, shoot landscapes (many with the Lee Big Stopper) and will keep the EM-1 when I need portability. I even shoot wildlife in manual focus, not one camera manufacturer has yet managed to put a focus point anywhere where I want to focus an image

My questions are these (and there are a few!!).

1. I shoot predominantly landscapes but bulk and weight are not an issue. I've read comments about the 25/4 not seeming so wide as the EFOV might on 35mm, can those who own it justify its price in terms of FOV over let's say the 35 or even the latest 28-45 zoom (ok, with that zoom and the 645ZX I may have to work out a bit), image quality, etc?

2. Can somebody point me to a few links telling me the lenses that are available for the 645Z with an adapter and perhaps also a review of how well they stack up against the Pentax 645 lenses?

3. Everybody seems to rave about the increased DR but I have yet to read anything about the use of grads in landscapes, I use them now and consider them an essential part of the kit but it seems odd that there are so many accomplished MF shooters that don't mention them or am I just reading the wrong threads?

4. Despite the weight, I may still be interested in using the 645Z for wildlife even though it's not a primary interest for me, fully recognizing the limitations of th eformat (although Andy Biggs might disagree on its "limitations"), still manual focus as that comes quite normally and naturally to me for most applications, I read a thread on the prospect in these forums but am curious how many casual wildlife/animal shooters actually use a 645 for anything like this or do they just grab another camera?

5. Are the RAW files 14 or 16 bit!!!

6. How much variation do you feel there is between samples of the older A lenses, some people seem to say lots, others say not much.

7. Realistically, I seem to be looking at the 28-45 zoom, 120/4 macro, maybe the 150 and maybe 300mm. Thoughts?

8. What non Pentax lenses (adapted) do you own and enjoy?

9. Do you see Photokina doing anything to affect the current supply (or non-supply) of used 645Z's? No big deal if not, I think I'm committed to removing that kidney and selling that child.

Many thanks for your insights, thoroughly enjoying these forums.

G

09-08-2014, 09:13 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by GarethC7 Quote
5. Are the RAW files 14 or 16 bit!!!
14bit (x3 channels)

Adam
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09-08-2014, 11:44 AM   #3
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To your #1, comparing FOV between 25mm and 35mm on 645D/Z, here is a 35mm frame stacked over a 25mm frame. As these were test frames while setting up a shot, the height and angle did not match exactly, but you should get a good idea how much wider the 25mm is vs the 35.


645D with A35/3.5 and D FA25/4

I ended up needing a little more width once the sky lit up, so I decided to shoot it as a pano, stitching two 25mm frames:

Last edited by mikeSF; 09-08-2014 at 02:30 PM.
09-08-2014, 12:54 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by GarethC7 Quote
Quick, sign off, new guy asking questions........

For those of you who are still reading, first off let me introduce myself in the wrong forum (always been a bit of a rebel). I've never shot anything other than 35mm, ironically I started with a Pentax slr about 40 years ago and not touched one since. I've transitioned from the 20D all the way up to a 5DMk2 but also enjoy using a rangefinder and have most recently been using an Olympus EM-1, great piece of machinery without the files to match.

As you can tell I've been disappointed with those files but quite enjoyed the 5D files but lust after the files of the 645Z.

I'm not a big fan of auto anything, shoot landscapes (many with the Lee Big Stopper) and will keep the EM-1 when I need portability. I even shoot wildlife in manual focus, not one camera manufacturer has yet managed to put a focus point anywhere where I want to focus an image

My questions are these (and there are a few!!).

1. I shoot predominantly landscapes but bulk and weight are not an issue. I've read comments about the 25/4 not seeming so wide as the EFOV might on 35mm, can those who own it justify its price in terms of FOV over let's say the 35 or even the latest 28-45 zoom (ok, with that zoom and the 645ZX I may have to work out a bit), image quality, etc?

2. Can somebody point me to a few links telling me the lenses that are available for the 645Z with an adapter and perhaps also a review of how well they stack up against the Pentax 645 lenses?

3. Everybody seems to rave about the increased DR but I have yet to read anything about the use of grads in landscapes, I use them now and consider them an essential part of the kit but it seems odd that there are so many accomplished MF shooters that don't mention them or am I just reading the wrong threads?

4. Despite the weight, I may still be interested in using the 645Z for wildlife even though it's not a primary interest for me, fully recognizing the limitations of th eformat (although Andy Biggs might disagree on its "limitations"), still manual focus as that comes quite normally and naturally to me for most applications, I read a thread on the prospect in these forums but am curious how many casual wildlife/animal shooters actually use a 645 for anything like this or do they just grab another camera?

5. Are the RAW files 14 or 16 bit!!!

6. How much variation do you feel there is between samples of the older A lenses, some people seem to say lots, others say not much.

7. Realistically, I seem to be looking at the 28-45 zoom, 120/4 macro, maybe the 150 and maybe 300mm. Thoughts?

8. What non Pentax lenses (adapted) do you own and enjoy?

9. Do you see Photokina doing anything to affect the current supply (or non-supply) of used 645Z's? No big deal if not, I think I'm committed to removing that kidney and selling that child.

Many thanks for your insights, thoroughly enjoying these forums.

G
Well, if you are interested in the 645Z, and can afford one, I can only envy you,

and, to anwser (part..) of your questions, maybe you can take a look at luminous landscape. The guy on that site did a good and compreensive user experience for the 645Z, and, like you, he shot landscapes and a lot of outdoors.

Maybe it can help you have a hint on what to expect about the image quality, lenses comparede and usability.

Cheers !

09-08-2014, 02:17 PM - 1 Like   #5
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Regarding the Grads question. Yes we use grads - and I would often add grads, full NDs, big or small stoppers to my 645D. Since getting my Z I have found (so far) less need for grads. Scenes that I were expecting to need a grad came in within the dynamic range of the Z. This is noticeable over the D and the Nikon D800. But I still carry them as I will need them sometime, so using the Z you will still need and use all your filters.

As for the choice on wide. I am still deciding between the 25 or the 28-45 zoom. I expect I will go with the zoom, slightly more versatile and still can use all those filters I carry. It is only 500g heavier than the 25 I think, but I drop having to carry the 55mm and 35mm lenses - so weight wise it will be the same as the 25 and still carrying the lenses.

Actually, the 28-45 is about the same weight as the Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 I use to carry - but shorter than the Nikon, so it has something to compare against in the 35mm world.

Also I am hearing the zoom is very sharp.

Phil
09-08-2014, 02:22 PM   #6
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 139
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
comparing FOV between 25mm and 35mm on 645D/Z, here is a 35mm frame stacked over a 25mm frame. As these were test frames while setting up a shot, the height and angle did not match exactly, but you should get a good idea how much wider the 25mm is vs the 35.


645D with A35/3.5 and D FA25/4

I ended up needing a little more width once the sky lit up, so I decided to shoot it as a pano, stitching two 25mm frames:
Seeing that shot just makes me lust even more after MF and maybe the 25!!! Great shot and I notice from the final product that there was minimal cropping so good for you. I'd hang that on the wall.
09-08-2014, 02:23 PM   #7
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 139
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by sungibr Quote
Well, if you are interested in the 645Z, and can afford one, I can only envy you,

and, to anwser (part..) of your questions, maybe you can take a look at luminous landscape. The guy on that site did a good and compreensive user experience for the 645Z, and, like you, he shot landscapes and a lot of outdoors.

Maybe it can help you have a hint on what to expect about the image quality, lenses comparede and usability.

Cheers !
I did already as well as Ming Thein's review and a couple of other threads on here but I was looking for some specific answers, many thanks.
09-08-2014, 02:33 PM   #8
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to your question about grads, I am posting this excerpt from forum member Hark Lee that may be helpful if you go with the 25mm. I did not see a photo of the resulting holder, however.

"...Since nobody has manufactured a dedicated filter holder for this lens, I had to fabricate one from a cheap abs pipe and Cokin z-pro filter holder.
At Home Depot, I picked up a small end cap hub that has a slightly smaller diameter than the front section of the lens, cut off the cap part,
converted it into a short cylinder and glued it to the back side of the Cokin Z-pro filter holder. I had to bore the cylinder a bit for a proper
tolerance and lined it with black velvet. FYI, after wasting a fortune on a number of different materials, I settled down on fake adhesive velvet
that I picked up from Daiso. After cutting and grinding, spray painting is a must and now you have a custom filter holder. You can use one 4X6
rectangular filter without vignetting. "

quoted from: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/1556221-post1.html

---------- Post added 09-08-2014 at 02:38 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by GarethC7 Quote
Seeing that shot just makes me lust even more after MF and maybe the 25!!! Great shot and I notice from the final product that there was minimal cropping so good for you. I'd hang that on the wall.
thx!

09-08-2014, 02:46 PM   #9
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 139
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by MrPhil Quote
Regarding the Grads question. Yes we use grads - and I would often add grads, full NDs, big or small stoppers to my 645D. Since getting my Z I have found (so far) less need for grads. Scenes that I were expecting to need a grad came in within the dynamic range of the Z. This is noticeable over the D and the Nikon D800. But I still carry them as I will need them sometime, so using the Z you will still need and use all your filters.

As for the choice on wide. I am still deciding between the 25 or the 28-45 zoom. I expect I will go with the zoom, slightly more versatile and still can use all those filters I carry. It is only 500g heavier than the 25 I think, but I drop having to carry the 55mm and 35mm lenses - so weight wise it will be the same as the 25 and still carrying the lenses.

Actually, the 28-45 is about the same weight as the Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 I use to carry - but shorter than the Nikon, so it has something to compare against in the 35mm world.

Also I am hearing the zoom is very sharp.

Phil
That was more or less my thinking Phil, I can lose the 3mm at the wide end and in fairness it would be my main lens for maybe 80% of my shots I think so well worth the carry. I keep seeing 25mm photos to add to the lust but as it's lust I know it's an emotional response brought about by people who know how to use it, it's not the lens, it's the operator. Good point on what lenses you can eliminate as well as I was looking at the 35A and perhaps the 55mm so they can say goodbye.

G
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