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07-05-2015, 02:31 AM   #16
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I played with one a couple weeks back and the IQ is truly bananas... but honestly, unless I was doing constant commercial or landscape work I can in no way stomach the price tag. Not long ago I moved into the 67 world and have an absolutely complete system for pennies compared to 645z. The K-3 is last digital I will buy for a very long time. (and this time I mean it - i bowed out of this pixel-race a couple years ago and will not be returning for the foreseeable future.

07-05-2015, 12:18 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kolor-Pikker Quote
Just so we're clear, by grip I mean this attachment piece:





Compared to the 1DX:



Setting my 645Z + 55mm next to the Canon 5D2 and 24-70 2.8 II, both are about the same high and width, but the Z is twice as deep around the mirror box area, and feels heftier, but not significantly more so.
Ok, thanks. Semantics since we call that a battery grip.,i.e., for extra battery capacity.
07-07-2015, 12:31 AM   #18
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Personally, I would not compare the D and the Z. The latter has a much more impressive sensor in my book, live view and a long list of other tweaks that make it a completely different proposition.

FWIW, IMHO the 645z handles much better than big pro SLRs (like the Volvo's 'boxy but good' advertising line!) and shoots much better frames than the A7R. I wrote about it extensively on my blog (the final part being here). Yes, it requires a different approach, but yes you will be rewarded. All of this is fairly unimportant if you are not making large prints, however.

The A7R II looks amazing, but where the Z scores highly is in the quality and selection of the lenses and the fact that cropped to 4:3 the Sony comes out at 38MP, with a higher pixel pitch and much more demand on the lenses. Compared to the A7R, 645Z files are also more robust under heavy processing, showing less noise and better overall quality.

As for the successor, I think its fair to assume Pentax will stick with a 44x33mm sensor as some of the new lenses will not cover full 645. The new lenses resolve so well that they can handle more resolution and upscaled to the same density as the 42mp sensor in the A7R, you get over 70MP....

I think the big issue is how large you print. If its rarely over 30", I'd stick with something smaller.

Last edited by batmobile; 07-07-2015 at 11:38 PM.
07-07-2015, 01:56 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tailwagger Quote
Which is why I'd say no... buy a used D today, build a lens system and save the pennies for 3 years hence.
Are the new 645 SDM lenses fully 645 (non cropped) compatible?

PS: Previous poster answered this question. If true, a strange "oversight" by Pentax as a full sized 645 sensor (56 x 41.5) would be a killer proposition.

07-07-2015, 04:27 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by bossa Quote
Are the new 645 SDM lenses fully 645 (non cropped) compatible?

PS: Previous poster answered this question. If true, a strange "oversight" by Pentax as a full sized 645 sensor (56 x 41.5) would be a killer proposition.
Lens names may start with the letters A, FA, D FA and DA.
A is manual focus full 645
FA is autofocus full 645
D FA is digital-optimized full 645
DA is digital 33x44mm

The 55mm, 90mm and 25mm are all D FA, and will cover full 645, but the new DA 25mm with the longer hood will vignette on 645.
The DA 28-45mm is the only lens explicitly designed for the 33x44mm sensor, or so Pentax claims on it's website, but no one is sure at what focal length it would vignette yet - there is a difference between how a lens is supposed to be used and how photographers use them. I refuse to believe that a lens that big doesn't have an image circle that extends well beyond the actual sensor.

There can still be a full size sensor Pentax 645X or whatever it'll be called, but only if and when Sony manufactures such a beast that's suitable for mass production, and the only lens that may suffer for it is the 28-45mm, although it's a pretty amazing piece of glass as it is. Maybe they'll offer a crop mode for shooting with DA lenses, but it would be counter-intuitive to be putting down thousands of bucks for a top-tier wide-angle just to crop.

A larger sensor would be a big boon to photographers using legacy lenses, as they would get more use out of them, but focusing on DA and making sharper and higher quality lenses would be better in the long term, as the lens lineup will eventually get replaced with lenses that are better suited for digital CMOS.
07-07-2015, 04:53 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kolor-Pikker Quote
DA is digital 33x44mm

The DA 28-45mm is the only lens explicitly designed for the 33x44mm sensor...it's a pretty amazing piece of glass as it is.


I was not aware of this when I bought the lens (or I glossed over it - I do not remember seeing such a direct description on the Pentax website), otherwise, I might have balked, at least until I had gotten a better idea of when a FF 645, if any, might be coming. I could have bought other lenses in the meantime. Glad I didn't know. As you say, it is a pretty amazing lens.
07-07-2015, 07:00 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kolor-Pikker Quote
Lens names may start with the letters A, FA, D FA and DA.
A is manual focus full 645
FA is autofocus full 645
D FA is digital-optimized full 645
DA is digital 33x44mm

The 55mm, 90mm and 25mm are all D FA, and will cover full 645, but the new DA 25mm with the longer hood will vignette on 645.
The DA 28-45mm is the only lens explicitly designed for the 33x44mm sensor, or so Pentax claims on it's website, but no one is sure at what focal length it would vignette yet - there is a difference between how a lens is supposed to be used and how photographers use them. I refuse to believe that a lens that big doesn't have an image circle that extends well beyond the actual sensor.

There can still be a full size sensor Pentax 645X or whatever it'll be called, but only if and when Sony manufactures such a beast that's suitable for mass production, and the only lens that may suffer for it is the 28-45mm, although it's a pretty amazing piece of glass as it is. Maybe they'll offer a crop mode for shooting with DA lenses, but it would be counter-intuitive to be putting down thousands of bucks for a top-tier wide-angle just to crop.

A larger sensor would be a big boon to photographers using legacy lenses, as they would get more use out of them, but focusing on DA and making sharper and higher quality lenses would be better in the long term, as the lens lineup will eventually get replaced with lenses that are better suited for digital CMOS.
Thanks for the detailed reply. I am aware of what the designations mean and only wanted to know if the latest DA lenses were FF645 compatible (I do appreciate the context though). This information would probably change my purchasing decisions, although I'd have to make sure before proceeding.

Cheers
07-08-2015, 10:02 AM   #23
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I want to add that the possibility of a full 645 sensor is fairly low, as Sony is already utilizing state of the art manufacturing techniques to get a sensor of the size we have now, one could end up waiting 5~10 years for something no one even promised, from a company not even interested in making its own MF camera. That's a lot of time you could have spent making great images even better if you hadn't sat on the fence.

We also have to consider that sensor size is not as important as it used to be for image quality, if we were to theoretically get a FF 645 sensor in say 5 years time, we would be looking at around 6 new lenses, possibly all DA, and this new camera would be back to being able to use only the legacy glass and early D FA models. Would you give up the ability to use these new high performance lenses for slightly more DR and noise performance, all of which technological advancement will improve with time anyway?

07-08-2015, 02:38 PM   #24
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I agree. My assessment is that full frame 645 from Pentax is a long way off -- at least as far away as the amount of time the 645D and 645Z have been on the market already. If someone needs or wants the 645 system because of what it can do for the work, then go with it now and make a ton great work during the years spent waiting for whatever comes next.

I tried the original 645D and immediately jumped into it with both feet as soon as I saw for myself what it could do. The 645Z is far more capable in a larger range of situations. Knowing what I know about this system and how it fits my work, I can't conceive of not having jumped on the 645D 4+ years ago, or waiting for X number of more years from now, just because some particular lens may not cover a hypothetical FF body when and if it ever becomes available. Perhaps somebody out there has a photographic usage that's specific enough that the current cropped sensor format doesn't cut it for them today. Fair enough; but I can't imagine there are very many such people. Of that number, most will have to buy a Phase IQ x80 or sit on the sidelines and wait.
07-09-2015, 03:26 AM   #25
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Just to be clear, my post discussed a possible alternate state of mind in the past, not my current state of mind because I already own the lens in question.


My presumptions for a FF 645 sensor, right or wrong, if one ever presents itself in the Pentax line-up, would be a significant increase in MP/resolution and maintaining the current very fine noise levels of the 645z and continued Pentax pricing. If I had I understood the meaning of the DA designation at the time of purchase, I do not think it would have taken me long, probably a few days, to think through the ramifications or I would have just posted the question and gotten these answers and then, purchased the lens. One ramification of the DA 28-45 'crop' lens is, IMO, Pentax is committed to the current sensor size for the foreseeable future.


Can someone tell me what the HD designation refers to? TIA
07-09-2015, 08:59 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by rfkiii Quote
Can someone tell me what the HD designation refers to? TIA
"High-Definition" - That's just the marketing name of the coating Pentax applies to the lens elements, same as T* on Zeiss, SWC on Canon, Nikon's Nano Coating, and so on. Reduces flare, veiling, ghosting, and improves contrast. Lenses have been using coatings since decades ago, but the ones developed in recent years give even zoom lenses impressive resistance to light interference, and lens makers love giving them fancy names since they spent so much of their R&D money on them, it used to be Coated, Multi-Coated, or if you were really fancy, Super Multi-Coated, regardless of brand.

Last edited by Kolor-Pikker; 07-09-2015 at 09:15 AM.
07-09-2015, 12:57 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by rfkiii Quote
Just to be clear, my post discussed a possible alternate state of mind in the past, not my current state of mind because I already own the lens in question.
One ramification of the DA 28-45 'crop' lens is, IMO, Pentax is committed to the current sensor size for the foreseeable future.
Perhaps they'll have both similar to Phase One. Regardless, to some degree its a little out of their hands. The size of the sensor really depends a lot more on what Sony decides to produce. Presumably they have some input, but one has to wonder what Sony has planned for their own use.
07-09-2015, 07:31 PM   #28
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I'd like to think that Sony will make a "FF" 645 chip at some point but I wonder with the aggressive direction they are heading with the new 42mp A7 - will they want to still cater for the medium format crowd?

One thing is for sure the guys at Sony doing the sensors are doing a brilliant job at it.
07-10-2015, 10:06 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by gavincato Quote
I'd like to think that Sony will make a "FF" 645 chip at some point but I wonder with the aggressive direction they are heading with the new 42mp A7 - will they want to still cater for the medium format crowd?

One thing is for sure the guys at Sony doing the sensors are doing a brilliant job at it.
Couldn't agree more as Sony sensors are special and how Pentax implemented the Sony sensor on the 645Z is also special.
07-10-2015, 12:00 PM - 1 Like   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by algrove Quote
Couldn't agree more as Sony sensors are special and how Pentax implemented the Sony sensor on the 645Z is also special.
I find it amusing that Sony regularly makes lesser implementations of their own sensors, the D810 is better than the A7r, the D750 is better than the A7 and A99, and before that the D3x was better than the A900.

While Sony brings hope of there being a company that has capacity and technology to produce a mirrorless medium format camera, I'm also worried that we'll get the same max ISO6400 sensor that the digital back manufacturers are using, instead of the Pentax-improved variant.
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