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Author Topic: Mini Test with the Pentax 645d + many questions  (Read 3820 times)
vantomas
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« on: March 19, 2011, 06:16:27 AM »
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Hi,

I had the chance to lay my hands on a pentax 645d the other day and shoot a few portraits. I work as a professional photographer and mainly shoot portraits for magazines or business clients. most of the time using available light. until 2004 i used to work with a pentax 645, an H1, and a Pentax 645. After having switched to digital in 2004 i now landed up using a canon 5d2 with the whole set of L-Lenses. (probably like so many other pros).
the canon works fine, i like the IQ etc. but i still have my eye on MF.

so...i picked up the 645d and immediatley liked its heft, weight andf builtquality. the body really moulds into your hand, the viewfinder is huge and bright, all dials are easy to operate, and AF was spot-on on all frames i took. it actully feels more than an big DSLR, than a MF camera.

the cons: from triggering the shutter to actually seeing a picture on the back screen you will have to wait 8 (!) seconds. there is no tethering! the mirror slap caused all handheld shots at 1/80sec to be slightly blurry. the dng files i got from the pentax looked fine up to 400 iso. any iso above that i wouldnt recommend. the sync speed i rather slow and there probably wont be any leaf shutter lenes coming from pentax. (i know this all leads to the comment: why dont you get the phase cam with a 30+ back?) to be honest: i just dont want spend more than 10k.

i dont have to change to MF, but i would very much like to. and the pricetag of the pentax is very tempting. do you think this is worth it?
will i see a noticable difference? i am glad to hear any real life comments and suggestions.

thank you
thomas

www.dashuber.de
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Dick Roadnight
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2011, 06:31:29 AM »
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Hi,


the cons: from triggering the shutter to actually seeing a picture on the back screen you will have to wait 8 (!) seconds. there is no tethering! the mirror slap caused all handheld shots at 1/80sec to be slightly blurry. the dng files i got from the pentax looked fine up to 400 iso. any iso above that i wouldnt recommend. the sync speed i rather slow and there probably wont be any leaf shutter lenes coming from pentax. (i know this all leads to the comment: why dont you get the phase cam with a 30+ back?) to be honest: i just dont want spend more than 10k.

thank you
thomas

www.dashuber.de
I thought you could get a new Hasselblad for 10k? The 40 would be best for hand-held ambient.
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Hasselblad H4, Sinar P3 monorail view camera, Schneider Apo-digitar lenses
donaldt
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2011, 07:15:19 AM »
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I also had the chance to play with my friend's 645D the other day
I am a current owner of a Hass digital system and Nikon system, and I had the Mamiya ZD which wa slike technology from the 10 years ago
and the 645D is the slowest thing I have ever seen
I think the Jpeg was a bit faster but who wants Jpeg
the camera is nice, lightweight, ergonomic, AF real fast, has a lot of bang for the bucks,
but either it has a wrongly designed image engine, or the engineers had brain damage and decided to give it SD card instead of CF card, or both
my Hass has 20% more MP but is much faster than the 645D, it makes no sense (but the Hass screen is so bad you dont really want it to show any pictures)

its not the end of the world though
still takes great pictures
just annoying
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natas
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« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2011, 12:59:42 PM »
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I use my Pentax 645D indoors for studio portraits and outdoors for landscapes.

First off there are a few things to cut the preview time to half of what you saw. My preview comes up in about 4 seconds. To do this I turned off things like Noise reduction, and lens calibration. Since I shoot raw these extras are really only useful for the jpeg preview. I also use class 10 SD cards which help with the speed. 4 seconds is still slow and annoying. I called Pentax America and complained to them about this. They said they have already sent a request to Pentax in Japan on enhancing the speed of the preview. Whether they will do something about it in a firmware or not I have no idea...but they know people are complaining.

If you are concerned with the sync speed you can always get one of the Pentax 645 LS Lenses. They make a 75 and I believe a 135 which both can be synched at 1/500. Since I shoot at f8-f16 in the studio 1/125 is perfectly fine for me

To answer your question about is it worth it? Well for me this is a big yes. Before I got the 645D I played with a Mamiya 645af w/ p30+ back. I did not like how the camera worked at all. The image quality was nice (no better or worse than the pentax) but it seemed old and outdated when compared to the 645D. The 645D has so many nice features built in (I love the mirror lockup). I have no opinion on the Hassy since I never tried one. I eliminated the Hassy because the prices of the lenses were just to high for me when I factored in the total cost.
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donaldt
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« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2011, 09:28:29 PM »
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I think there are in fact 3 LS lenses, one for the 67 but can be used on 645 as well
not sure if they are great but they are extremely cheap

I think the 645D gives the most bang for the buck comparing even with the top of the line 135 system (in MF it is the cheapest but holds up strongly to its rivals)
its lens are relatively cheap as well (most of those FA lenses are less than $1000)

if you want the most IQ for the least money 645D has it all
I am recently thinking about trading my Hass H3Dii50 for a 645D
besides being slow (which really isnt the end of the world)
its really a fine camera with a good line of lens already out there


I use my Pentax 645D indoors for studio portraits and outdoors for landscapes.

First off there are a few things to cut the preview time to half of what you saw. My preview comes up in about 4 seconds. To do this I turned off things like Noise reduction, and lens calibration. Since I shoot raw these extras are really only useful for the jpeg preview. I also use class 10 SD cards which help with the speed. 4 seconds is still slow and annoying. I called Pentax America and complained to them about this. They said they have already sent a request to Pentax in Japan on enhancing the speed of the preview. Whether they will do something about it in a firmware or not I have no idea...but they know people are complaining.

If you are concerned with the sync speed you can always get one of the Pentax 645 LS Lenses. They make a 75 and I believe a 135 which both can be synched at 1/500. Since I shoot at f8-f16 in the studio 1/125 is perfectly fine for me

To answer your question about is it worth it? Well for me this is a big yes. Before I got the 645D I played with a Mamiya 645af w/ p30+ back. I did not like how the camera worked at all. The image quality was nice (no better or worse than the pentax) but it seemed old and outdated when compared to the 645D. The 645D has so many nice features built in (I love the mirror lockup). I have no opinion on the Hassy since I never tried one. I eliminated the Hassy because the prices of the lenses were just to high for me when I factored in the total cost.
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icemansven
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« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2011, 10:14:22 AM »
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I use my Pentax 645D indoors for studio portraits and outdoors for landscapes.

First off there are a few things to cut the preview time to half of what you saw. My preview comes up in about 4 seconds. To do this I turned off things like Noise reduction, and lens calibration. Since I shoot raw these extras are really only useful for the jpeg preview. I also use class 10 SD cards which help with the speed. 4 seconds is still slow and annoying. I called Pentax America and complained to them about this. They said they have already sent a request to Pentax in Japan on enhancing the speed of the preview. Whether they will do something about it in a firmware or not I have no idea...but they know people are complaining.

If you are concerned with the sync speed you can always get one of the Pentax 645 LS Lenses. They make a 75 and I believe a 135 which both can be synched at 1/500. Since I shoot at f8-f16 in the studio 1/125 is perfectly fine for me

To answer your question about is it worth it? Well for me this is a big yes. Before I got the 645D I played with a Mamiya 645af w/ p30+ back. I did not like how the camera worked at all. The image quality was nice (no better or worse than the pentax) but it seemed old and outdated when compared to the 645D. The 645D has so many nice features built in (I love the mirror lockup). I have no opinion on the Hassy since I never tried one. I eliminated the Hassy because the prices of the lenses were just to high for me when I factored in the total cost.

There will be a new D-FA Pentax 645 LS Lens.

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?topic=51261.0/

First Picture. I am sure, Pentax taped the flash sync socket.
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Leping
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« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2011, 02:40:12 PM »
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If you turn off all the processing, and not actually writing to the card (using "digital preview" on the on/off switch, same as LCD light position on the Nikons) it is only about 2 second, even without a card, and you can program in a high "initial magnification" to check focus at 800% or 1600% fairly quickly.  Yes, it is not the one touch (via center button programming) convenience, as with a Nikon, but one push of "Disp" and one touch of the rear dail.  Works fine for me and still miles ahead of any Canon (drives me crazy pushing 6 times in order to get a "100% pixel view", while still NOT at the focusing point, like a Nikon).

There are also alternative methods with Eye-Fi cards to enable quick viewing, which I have not investigated yet.
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jimgolden
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« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2011, 05:12:38 PM »
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thomas - looked at your site, really like your portraits! stick with what you know, if the stuff on your site is 5D, use it. no MF system gives you the range ISO wise that the 5D will

jim
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Josef Isayo
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« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2011, 09:08:42 PM »
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I just picked a mint condition Hasselblad H4D 40 with an 80mm lens for $12,500. I love the viewfinder, the AF is more than decent, image quality is leaps and bounds better than my 5D MK II, and it has proven track record.
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ondebanks
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« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2011, 09:32:33 AM »
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I thought you could get a new Hasselblad for 10k? The 40 would be best for hand-held ambient.

Hasselblad are competitive on body + back pricing...or even body + back + standard lens. But then it's the prices of everything else that turn some people off. Pentax and Mamiya look more attractive for assembling a whole kit, especially when some of it is acquired on the used market.

But the bigger issue with the Hasselblad H system for many people is the restrictions imposed by the leaf shutter. They should have gone with a dual-shutter approach, like the 200/2000 V series.

Ray
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