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09-12-2014, 09:51 PM - 1 Like   #1
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Luminous-Landscape loves 645z!

Just read a really fine 645z review by Michael Reichmann at Luminous-Landscape.

It's a must-read -- Pentax 645z In-Depth Review

...he feels the same way about the 645z as i do about my old film 645... such great camera ergonomics, such a pleasure to use. Was very pleased to see that the 645z design really, really impressed a very experienced landscape photographer... who is happily discovering that he can use TAv with an upper limit of 12,800 and free himself from the tripod, for street shooting. He's got the Flu card working with an iPhone 5, too. Neat.

09-12-2014, 10:30 PM   #2
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Wow, what a great read that is. Thanks for sharing.
09-13-2014, 08:46 AM   #3
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Yes, I read Michael Reichmann's 645Z notes with interest, especially after the first cut he and Nick Devlin published attracted comments for its somewhat mixed signals.

Somebody who is known as a small-format proponent, Zack Arias, also just posted a nice read on his site called "When Will Medium Format Return?" It's not specifically about any one camera, and Zack is a Phase shooter, but the Pentax 645Z gets a mention.
When Will Medium Format Return? DEDPXL

Though he takes a poke at the 645Z sensor being smaller than 645 full frame, and the lack of leaf shutter lenses (useful in his type of work), he notes the cost effectiveness. He also says "I do want to put the Pentax in my hand and to my eye. I want to see what that is about." Arias has a huge following so this mention is helpful at putting the 645Z on the radar of other people.

The 645D won all kinds of rewards, and had great bang-for-buck for photographers like me who could live with the limitations of the system at that time. But for various reasons we know too well, the D never really took off in the marketplace. The 645Z is a different situation, now. With the attention coming to it (not just awards), even more bang-for-buck, and a better rounded presence in North America, Ricoh is in position to have a break-out. There are some critical things they still need to do to support this opportunity (pro-level service is a big one)... but it seems doable.
09-13-2014, 11:02 AM   #4
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Not as sanguine

From the tone of his Pentax comments, I suspect that Arias will try the Z and declare it wanting.

09-13-2014, 11:52 AM   #5
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I must admit that it was LL's review that got me looking at the 645Z as a realistic option for me. I found the files from an EM-1 to be desperately lacking this summer and was seriously considering upgrading my 5D Mk2 to the 3 but MF suits my style of shooting and the 645Z suits my wallet. There i sno doubt in my mind that the 645Z is wanting in many areas but I have yet to find a camera that isn't so as with most things in life it's a matter of picking your trade offs and what suits you. I am particularly impressed with the detail as well as the DR of the files and not being portable in the M4/3 sense is not an issue to me, I like tripods.
09-13-2014, 12:32 PM   #6
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Not so sure this is good mention Royce. He called it "not too bad.."?! What he said about the sensor size is not true, "Pentax, though, in their infinite wisdom, decided to use a smaller sensor than other digital medium format cameras ..."
Smaller than some yes, but not all, in particular the new cameras using the same sensor - something he omitted.

I do agree on the support issue. Living near the US/Ontario border, I depended on Pentax Canada for my repairs; I haven't needed a repair for years, but based on what I've read, the situation in North America sounds dismal.
09-13-2014, 02:15 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Thomas Quote
Not so sure this is good mention Royce. He called it "not too bad.."?! What he said about the sensor size is not true, "Pentax, though, in their infinite wisdom, decided to use a smaller sensor than other digital medium format cameras ..."
Smaller than some yes, but not all, in particular the new cameras using the same sensor - something he omitted.

I do agree on the support issue. Living near the US/Ontario border, I depended on Pentax Canada for my repairs; I haven't needed a repair for years, but based on what I've read, the situation in North America sounds dismal.
Only Pentax receives criticism for using the same cropped sensor that Phase One and Hasselblad use. If Pentax doesn't use it, Sony may not opt to manufacture it or the unit price to Hassy or Phase would be astronomical. The Hassy & Phase equipment is still out sight price-wise but maybe they will feel pressure on their pricing due to the Z.
09-13-2014, 10:16 PM   #8
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A comment of "not too bad" from Arias is not too bad. And with the state of things, a mention by someone with a big following who's willing to even look at the system is worth something. Intelligent buyers will make up their own mind but first they need to have a reason to even consider the system. Arias loves medium format in general and he doesn't BS. I think if the 645Z doesn't suit him, he'll say so, but I don't think he'll trash it out of hand or for bogus reasons.

Michael Reichmann and Nick Devlin's initial review on LuLa sent some mixed messages, and MR still ended up buying in anyway and publishing a somewhat clearer position in the second review. Even so, some people no doubt would have been influenced to at least look at the 645Z even if that first review was the only one on LuLa... they'll search around and find other reviews and info carrying more perspective. The camera needs buzz of a certain quality, and it looks like it's getting it for now...

09-14-2014, 05:52 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by robertchow999 Quote
From the tone of his Pentax comments, I suspect that Arias will try the Z and declare it wanting.
I think he might pick the new Hasselblad H5X since he just need to replace the body and keep the Digi-back.
Another thing is, for his line of works (Portraiture & such) Leaf Shutter lenses are always good to have and PhaseOne/Schneider LS lenses sync higher then those of Hassy.

I shoot lots of portraits as well & I choose 645Z and I still use those old Pentax 645 A 135mm LS ... It's a great portrait lens even when the Leaf Shutter only goes to 1/500.
Love it ...
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