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02-03-2012, 01:59 PM   #1
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Which Pentax Camera considered as Professional

In the reviews, I always hear the experts call the different Pentax cameras up to the K-5 as "semi-professional". But then what would be considered as fully professional cameras? And which Pentax model would be considered as one?

02-03-2012, 02:02 PM   #2
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The 645D is a professional studio camera.

Pentax 645D Review vs. Nikon D3x - Introduction - PentaxForums.com

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02-03-2012, 02:12 PM   #3
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yes. Adam beats me to it. IMHO, the 645D is the Pentax Pro-camera.
02-03-2012, 02:19 PM   #4
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That depends on your definition of "professional". With the exception of the 645D as noted by Adam, Pentax has avoided calling any of its cameras "professional". They are often called "enthusiast" or "semi-pro" models.

And there is some debate as to whether it is the specifications of the camera or the support network that defines "professional" There are certainly people who make a living with Pentax equipment, are they not "professional"? But the Pentax support for pros is sorely lacking. For example if I have a failure I cannot get same day replacement on the site like you can with other brands, although you pay for that service. I do not make my living at photography but I do sell images and make money with my k-5, so am I not a "professional" because I use a Pentax camera or because I do not derive my entire income from it?

If Pentax should at some future point release a model with more advanced features than the k-5, perhaps: full frame, integrated grip, integrated flash radio trigger, tethering to computer and so on, that might be called a "professional" camera but some would still say without the support for working pros it is not.

02-03-2012, 02:22 PM   #5
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the only differance from a consumer camera and pro is the build quality. A pro camera will be metal bodied and weatherproof etc.
A true pro camera should also be good for 250,000 shutter actuations. A good guide is semi pro are tested to 150,000 actuations.
The K5 was made as a direct competitor to the D300 so you could say the K5 is a semi pro camera.
Im not sure how many shutter actuations it has been tested to though.
Many regard the D300 as a pro camera even though its only tested for 150,0000 actuations.
BUT ! The D3S is tested to 250,000.
This is what I would like from Pentax !
02-03-2012, 02:35 PM   #6
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Professional is not a very definitive term. Most people would agree that all full-frame DSLR's qualify as pro-level. Olympus markets their E-5 as a Pro camera. I could never figure out what makes the E-5 pro-level, but not the K-5, because the features are very similar. I think I was looking in the wrong place. Maybe the difference is not found in the body, but in the marketing strategy:

Olympus Global Pro Service (OGPS) is a comprehensive support program for the dedicated working professional photographer. Olympus understands the pro photographer's needs. Whether you purchased a camera in New York and need service for it in Paris, or simply want to make a pre-purchase equipment evaluation — OGPS provides a worldwide service network to qualified pro photographers.

Olympus Global Pro Service member benefits include:

Priority support through a dedicated hotline and email account.
Rush Priority Repairs.
Loaner equipment (cameras, lenses and accessories) for pre-purchase evaluation, or temporary equipment replacement.


Jatrax posted while I was typing.
02-03-2012, 02:42 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
Professional is not a very definitive term. Most people would agree that all full-frame DSLR's qualify as pro-level. Olympus markets their E-5 as a Pro camera. I could never figure out what makes the E-5 pro-level, but not the K-5, because the features are very similar. I think I was looking in the wrong place. Maybe the difference is not found in the body, but in the marketing strategy:

Olympus Global Pro Service (OGPS) is a comprehensive support program for the dedicated working professional photographer. Olympus understands the pro photographer's needs. Whether you purchased a camera in New York and need service for it in Paris, or simply want to make a pre-purchase equipment evaluation — OGPS provides a worldwide service network to qualified pro photographers.

Olympus Global Pro Service member benefits include:

Priority support through a dedicated hotline and email account.
Rush Priority Repairs.
Loaner equipment (cameras, lenses and accessories) for pre-purchase evaluation, or temporary equipment replacement.

Jatrax posted while I was typing.
I beleive the Olympus E5 has been tested to 250 or even 300 thousand shutter actuations and is built like a tank,
It is certainly a pro camera to the highest degree.
The same rules apply to full frame too. Its about durability and nothing to do with IQ.
Some of the consumer cameras perform every bit as good as the pro model with the same glass fitted.
Its about depenability and survivning the knocks etc.

Last edited by westmill; 02-03-2012 at 02:49 PM. Reason: more info
02-03-2012, 03:22 PM   #8
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Throughout the entire Pentax history, the only professional K mount camera was the LX which was released 3 decades ago, against the Canon F-1new and Nikon F3. The even earlier MX was marketed as a pro camera too but the market disagreed. It is interesting how many are still be waiting for a pro camera even though Pentax have never had any attempt since. Minolta fought hard and died. Olympus tried again with their E-1/3/5 and sunk the 4/3. I think Pentax is wise not to pursue this course and stays within their domain. The mere fact is that Canon & Nikon dominate the pro sector with their vast array of gears, network, CS and brand image. Pentax will have to kill herself making a scratch. And one has to wonder, why would any working pro wanting a Pentax when one can purchase them now from C/N and start making money?

02-03-2012, 03:40 PM   #9
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I've long felt that a "professional" camera is the one made only by the Canikon's that Pentax and the other brands don't have.
02-03-2012, 03:54 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by wlachan Quote
Throughout the entire Pentax history, the only professional K mount camera was the LX which was released 3 decades ago, against the Canon F-1new and Nikon F3. The even earlier MX was marketed as a pro camera too but the market disagreed. It is interesting how many are still be waiting for a pro camera even though Pentax have never had any attempt since. Minolta fought hard and died. Olympus tried again with their E-1/3/5 and sunk the 4/3. I think Pentax is wise not to pursue this course and stays within their domain. The mere fact is that Canon & Nikon dominate the pro sector with their vast array of gears, network, CS and brand image. Pentax will have to kill herself making a scratch. And one has to wonder, why would any working pro wanting a Pentax when one can purchase them now from C/N and start making money?
Some good points there ! except pentax already has a great pro grade lens line up now.
Also, not all pro photographers need huge systems. The camera and system are just the working tools of the photographer.
I think if Pentax bought out a true pro APSC it would do amazingly well for pentax and put them back on the map.
I kind of think photographers that use there equipment a lot often tend to grow a bond too.
I loved the E1 for sure and although I switched to Nikon, I dont have that same bond. My Nikon are without doubt amazing bits of faultless kit.
Despite this, I have no love for it. Hard to explain.... but I bought the K5 a few wks ago... and despite being a pain and not being as flawless as
my Nikon.. I love it, just as I did the E1. A tuffed up version of the K5 and pentax has it. I would be the first in the queue.
02-03-2012, 04:07 PM   #11
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A pro camera has features and functionality that a casual user will not experience or need.
A pro camera has reliability and redundancy that a casual user will not experience of need.

A pro camera can have all of the above and only appeal to a few users who are willing to pay the premium for less manufactured units to achieve the above.

The K5 is close to a pro camera, but lacks some features I would like, and because of that it's close, but not quite there.
02-03-2012, 04:16 PM   #12
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What would make a Pro K5 for me?

1) Audio level control
2) re-enforced audio input jack with better weather sealing
3) Additional SD slot with automatic roll over
4) More custom menus and additional buttons to program specific functions on.
5) An LED light (red or white) on the front of the camera so that I change lenses in the dark
6) External battery pack
7) beefier tripod sockets and two of them in 90 degree to each other
8) Another hot shoe or accessory socket
9) More memory for storage/processing
10) GPS built in.
11) Fast lenses to go with the camera
12) Full control in video mode
13) Enhanced intervalometer support
12) Blutooth integration or WiFi

Probably more if I think about it.
02-03-2012, 04:34 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by LaurenOE Quote
What would make a Pro K5 for me?

1) Audio level control
2) re-enforced audio input jack with better weather sealing
3) Additional SD slot with automatic roll over
4) More custom menus and additional buttons to program specific functions on.
5) An LED light (red or white) on the front of the camera so that I change lenses in the dark
6) External battery pack
7) beefier tripod sockets and two of them in 90 degree to each other
8) Another hot shoe or accessory socket
9) More memory for storage/processing
10) GPS built in.
11) Fast lenses to go with the camera
12) Full control in video mode
13) Enhanced intervalometer support
12) Blutooth integration or WiFi

Probably more if I think about it.
Pro cameras usualy have less feature wise for dependability.
I would like mine built like a tank with bigger buffer and more reliable autofocus lol.
I would disspose of all the gizzmo stuff totally, including the video.
02-03-2012, 04:47 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by westmill Quote
I would like mine built like a tank with bigger buffer and more reliable autofocus lol.
Maybe without buttons falling off, sticking on/off buttons, mirror flop issues, LV freezes, ................... So, back to the original question:

Which Pentax Camera considered as Professional

The 645D as noted and unfortunately it is the only one in the Pentax lineup that could be considered anywhere near a professional grade body.
02-03-2012, 06:20 PM   #15
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What is professional? Would I use a K-5 for sports or wildlife photography? No. Lack of lenses. Would I use one for architecture? Ditto. Portraits, weddings, or landscapes? Sure, and that probably makes up the largest group of pros. Professional means a set of skills not a particular camera system.
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