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Author Topic: Pentax 645Z  (Read 39391 times)
eronald
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« Reply #380 on: August 25, 2014, 06:29:18 AM »
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135 systems have not previously been optimized for "MF applications", ie high resolution photography in good light. It has not really been meaningful to do so as high resolution sensors has not existed. It's different now, and the Zeiss Otus and Sigma Art lens lines are the first(?) products that aim for high resolving power. Still it's easier to resolve more with a larger format, but maybe modern optics manufacturing will make the size factor less meaningful.

It's quite early though, and it's still true that for 135 systems most lenses are not designed for very high resolving power. Personally I don't find Zeiss Otus to be a real alternative, as for this type of camera I want autofocus.

There is a fairly cheap and very good af 50mm for the Sony. If you want high quality and SLR convenience, but the 50 is your main lens then the whole system with 50 is probably cheaper than the huge non-af Otus.

Edmund
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bcooter
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« Reply #381 on: August 25, 2014, 08:35:49 AM »
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Obviously there has been a large unfilled demand for a larger than 35mm camera that comes it at under $10,000 and it seems the Pentax fills that niche.

Probably in the real world, 22, to 35 to 50mpx doesn't make that much difference in most applications given that photography style, concept, what's in front of the lens is more important than the actual capture device, as long as the camera doesn't inhibit you.

This forum is more tech oriented, mostly visited by advanced enthusiasts, less so by working for profit image makers, so the viewpoints are going to vary.

The pentax strikes a positive with the photographer that doesn't want to do the typical canon/nikon thing, but wants something a little different, a little more "special".

I assume when Pentax/Richoh decided on where to go next they could do a follow the herd full frame 35mm camera and fight it out for 4th or 5th place, or just continue to be a little bit different and go for the larger format group at a higher price point. 

I hope it works for them, because being different is good.

IMO

BC
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« Reply #382 on: August 25, 2014, 09:00:50 AM »
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The conclusion that "the 90mm Pentax is the only lens thanks to which the 645Z isn't inferior to a D810 + a good 35 mm equivalent lens." seems rather quick. In addition to sample variation, if one also includes MF-lenses such as the Otus, as I have mentioned before, it would be natural to also consider MF-lenses for the Pentax. Ming Thein found that: "In short, the Zeiss V glass [on the 645Z] outperforms the legacy FA Pentax lenses (75/2.8 vs 2.8/80; 200/4 vs 4/150) by a noticeable margin, wide open or stopped down. The Zeisses tend to start off a bit softer but improve more through f8-11". So if some of the legacy lenses are less than stellar, it seems some of the focal lenghts could be filled in by other brands. Others have also found lenses such as the  P67 55-100mm to be sharper than the 645 version. I have personally used the old 120mm A macro (bought for $ 160 on ebay!) on a 15mpix APS-C Canon (with higher pixel density than the 645Z), and it was very sharp. I would be curious as to which lens Lloyd found that outperformed it and the 645Z on 35mm. With the new 28-45mm and rumored new 80-160mm, it seems Pentax will update its lens line to support the 645Z in any event.

Dag
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 09:03:41 AM by dag.bb » Logged
Ken R
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« Reply #383 on: August 25, 2014, 09:52:50 AM »
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Obviously there has been a large unfilled demand for a larger than 35mm camera that comes it at under $10,000 and it seems the Pentax fills that niche.

Probably in the real world, 22, to 35 to 50mpx doesn't make that much difference in most applications given that photography style, concept, what's in front of the lens is more important than the actual capture device, as long as the camera doesn't inhibit you.

This forum is more tech oriented, mostly visited by advanced enthusiasts, less so by working for profit image makers, so the viewpoints are going to vary.

The pentax strikes a positive with the photographer that doesn't want to do the typical canon/nikon thing, but wants something a little different, a little more "special".

I assume when Pentax/Richoh decided on where to go next they could do a follow the herd full frame 35mm camera and fight it out for 4th or 5th place, or just continue to be a little bit different and go for the larger format group at a higher price point. 

I hope it works for them, because being different is good.

IMO

BC


I have tested a bunch of camera / sensor and lens combinations and to really get a significant improvement in image (system) resolution over a D800E and the BEST lenses on it you need to use the best tech camera lenses and the 60mp or 80mp CMOS sensor backs (given equally good technique and average light). The difference is really eye opening.

Obviously system resolution is not the only parameter to take into consideration when choosing a system (and honestly in a lot of cases it is far down the list) but that does not make my statement any less true.

When you use those same 60/80 mp backs with SLR lenses you loose a bit of resolution (again that is with the best SLR lenses) and the performance get closer to what you would get with the D800E and the 645D (again, using the very best lenses for each camera). It still ahead (again in terms of resolution) but the increased costs and versatility compromises get harder to justify, again, if you only use resolution as the measuring stick. (like a few here have done a LOT of times).

As a camera / sensor body the 645Z seems superb. As a system it is in the middle (not only in price), it has the convenience, functionality, ease of use, integration and ANY light Image Quality of a typical top end DSLR (35mm) camera body but without the HUGE lens selection available for the 35mm DSLR systems or the VERY high quality leaf shutter lens availability of a PhaseOne, Hasselblad H or Leica S system. The PhaseOne and Leaf backs offer the additional possibility of using Tech Camera lens setups (my choice) that offer LOTS of sensor / lens movements.

Regarding the 90mm Pentax 645 lens. It is a good one but IMHO it is priced WAY to high and the Bokeh is unattractive. It is however very sharp and has IS.

Again, it's great to have options.

BC you are spot on. It is tough to make recommendations since very few of us here seem to work in collaborative, client supervised photography jobs. I just always try to make clear where im coming from when making a recommendation and giving out info on gear.

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Theodoros
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« Reply #384 on: August 25, 2014, 09:58:04 AM »
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I have tested a bunch of camera / sensor and lens combinations ....

Failed to see (or understand the results off) any "testing" whatsoever...  Wink Sorry...  Tongue
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eronald
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« Reply #385 on: August 25, 2014, 12:32:12 PM »
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I assume when Pentax/Richoh decided on where to go next they could do a follow the herd full frame 35mm camera and fight it out for 4th or 5th place, or just continue to be a little bit different and go for the larger format group at a higher price point. 

I hope it works for them, because being different is good.

IMO

BC


I assume they saw thePhase prices and decide to compete on price and integration.

Best of luck to them.
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bcooter
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« Reply #386 on: August 25, 2014, 01:10:21 PM »
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Edmund,

For years you've dissed medium format prices but hey, they got you once and you wrote the check and last time I looked all the medium format guys were still doing good business.

The Pentax is a good deal IF you don't have any lenses or hooked into the Phase system, but when it comes to professional tethering, long (very very long) lasting equipment with a strong dealer network
(the stuff the professionals need), Phase is at the very tippy top of the list and no offense to Pentax but they're new lenses aren't cheap, nobody knows about their software suite, or repair facilities.

I can dig it that you want prices to come down, understand that since your not a pro, you don't need to spend the cash, but no medium format salesman I know is getting rich, they're just making a living and I hope they're around for a long time.

Phase, Leaf, Leica, Blad are not huge companies like Canon and Nikon so it's not like they're leveraging their weight.

People buy their products because they want to.  Phase doesn't have subpoena power, they just offer a product and hope people buy.

So far it's been working pretty well for such a small company.

Chill on the money man.

IMO

BC
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eronald
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« Reply #387 on: August 25, 2014, 03:51:16 PM »
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Edmund,

last time I looked all the medium format guys were still doing good business.

IMO

BC


Well, that is technically true.

Sinar seems to have been acquired by Leica, but have stopped marketing Jenoptik's tech in the guise of untethered backs AFAIK. Rollei-based bodies are seen very very rarely. Mamiya had some digital products of their own, but have since been acquired by Phase.  Kodak made some backs which still have fans in Russia, but this founding giant has ascended to Nirvana, while Leaf seems to have turned into a Phase sub-brand. Hassy has been rumored to have some financial issues, which I hope are not too severe, and to be a candidate for acquisition. And two minor but important players, Truesense and Dalsa appear to have stopped updating their medium format sensor line.

There is a technical term to describe people like me, it's something like argumentative a*****e, but there is also a technical term in Freudian analysis for describing the forgotten painful past, I think it is "repressed memory" Smiley .

Edmund



« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 04:13:21 PM by eronald » Logged
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« Reply #388 on: August 25, 2014, 04:08:04 PM »
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,... so this must be taken with a grain of salt as all reviews are.

A grain of salt and then maybe the whole shaker thrown in.   Wink

Here in this thread you have some very good feedback on the system from actual owners and users . why go pay money for a single sample review from a person not previously familiar with the product?  
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 04:18:43 PM by EricWHiss » Logged

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« Reply #389 on: August 25, 2014, 04:10:20 PM »
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It sounds like the Pentax 645Z may be a winner.  I'm very curious to try one myself.

The thing about comparing MFDB to DSLR is that it seems there is no convenient way to compare other facets of image quality and character than sharpness, and also just how much one can lift the shadows.   To me that's just a tiny portion of what makes up an image.     For that reason I do appreciate comments such as Dave's who reports that the lens is pleasing for portraits wide open even if it isn't sharp at that aperture.   
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LKaven
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« Reply #390 on: August 25, 2014, 04:26:52 PM »
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The business of engineering MFD backs has traditionally required the arcane craft of designing analog front ends for maximum performance.  The new Sony sensor delivers digital output, which simplifies the task considerably.  I think it is apt to enquire as to why the IQ-250 costs $35000 in comparison to $8500 for the 645Z.  No matter how the question of "professional value" is weighed, I think there has got to be some stress on PhaseOne's formula.  And no criticism of DT and CI is implied in anything said so far.  Their sales staff could sell MF equipment all day long at competitive prices.
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eronald
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« Reply #391 on: August 25, 2014, 06:15:46 PM »
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Regarding the $35K of the Phase, without lens, here is a 100% crop from my Sigma DP3M. This is what consumers can now routinely expect from a $400 compact. Surely, Phase can be expected to do much better for $35K? Is tethering alone really worth that much, as the artist now called Cooter indicates? In that case, maybe there is money to be made from Nikon D810 tethering software ...

(click on the image a second time to enlarge).

Edmund

The business of engineering MFD backs has traditionally required the arcane craft of designing analog front ends for maximum performance.  The new Sony sensor delivers digital output, which simplifies the task considerably.  I think it is apt to enquire as to why the IQ-250 costs $35000 in comparison to $8500 for the 645Z.  No matter how the question of "professional value" is weighed, I think there has got to be some stress on PhaseOne's formula.  And no criticism of DT and CI is implied in anything said so far.  Their sales staff could sell MF equipment all day long at competitive prices.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 06:23:58 PM by eronald » Logged
Manoli
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« Reply #392 on: August 25, 2014, 06:58:00 PM »
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Regarding the $35K of the Phase, without lens, here is a 100% crop from my Sigma DP3M...

And another; Iridient Developer imported into Lightroom 5 - no pp.
Cooter, not quite like Edmund's;  off-set 'talent' - can you match those skin tones ,, ?
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 07:09:48 PM by Manoli » Logged
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« Reply #393 on: August 25, 2014, 11:10:37 PM »
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And another; Iridient Developer imported into Lightroom 5 - no pp.
Cooter, not quite like Edmund's;  off-set 'talent' - can you match those skin tones ,, ?
That looks so much more like a painting to me than a person, I wouldn't be surprised to hear it was true.
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« Reply #394 on: August 25, 2014, 11:20:56 PM »
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Edmund  + Manoli,
I tested the Sigma DP3 with their 1 week trial.   I wasn't really impressed with the camera, skin tones,  or colors, but then it's possible I didn't invest enough time to learn their software.

Here's an example of something you can't probably do with the sigma DP3: With a larger sensor of the AFi-ii 12, the DOF can be really small even with the normal focal length.   80mm Xenotar wide open.    You can't even recognize the orange spots as flowers just behind him let alone the cars parked on the street behind.  I know there are very fast lenses out there for DSLR's (I have several f/1.2 lenses for 35mm format) but I believe that this is an area where MF still has advantages. 
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 11:30:17 PM by EricWHiss » Logged

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eronald
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« Reply #395 on: August 25, 2014, 11:45:53 PM »
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Edmund  + Manoli,
I tested the Sigma DP3 with their 1 week trial.   I wasn't really impressed with the camera, skin tones,  or colors, but then it's possible I didn't invest enough time to learn their software.

Here's an example of something you can't probably do with the sigma DP3: With a larger sensor of the AFi-ii 12, the DOF can be really small even with the normal focal length.   80mm Xenotar wide open.    You can't even recognize the orange spots as flowers just behind him let alone the cars parked on the street behind.  I know there are very fast lenses out there for DSLR's (I have several f/1.2 lenses for 35mm format) but I believe that this is an area where MF still has advantages.  

Eric,

 I'll be the first to say that MF has advantages. One of which is as you state achieving separation with a "normal" focal length.

 As your criticism of the DP series skin tones goes, I vote with you too.  Of course, legacy CCD MF had the very best skin tone, the jury is still out on the Sony sensor.

 I just wish the MF crowd got its act together and made some cheaper and better cameras - oh, wait, that's what Pentax have started to do ...

Edmund
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 11:58:29 PM by eronald » Logged
Manoli
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« Reply #396 on: August 26, 2014, 12:55:32 AM »
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That looks so much more like a painting to me than a person, I wouldn't be surprised to hear it was true.

Eric,
Almost. Poolside decor !

But, yes, I would agree with your and Edmund's remarks. I don't think that the sensor even matches the A7r/D800 class of camera, certainly not with excellent lenses mounted. In limit DR / subdued lighting, the camera copes, but pushed, it's failed where even a Sony RX100 has coped. A curio 'cam' .

And now back to the 645...

M
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« Reply #397 on: August 26, 2014, 01:14:08 AM »
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Yes, I think for the price especially the 645Z may be really great.  I am less excited about the CMOS than perhaps I should be because it seems always a give away of base ISO IQ for higher ISO performance, but hey maybe the Pentax lenses with design for much larger film coverage will be sharp to the edges of the sensor crop?
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« Reply #398 on: August 26, 2014, 03:44:19 AM »
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Sigma, brilliant or fatally flawed, brilliant or fatally flawed, brilliant or fatally flawed... 
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« Reply #399 on: August 26, 2014, 04:12:42 AM »
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Edmund  + Manoli,
I tested the Sigma DP3 with their 1 week trial.   I wasn't really impressed with the camera, skin tones,  or colors, but then it's possible I didn't invest enough time to learn their software.

Here's an example of something you can't probably do with the sigma DP3: With a larger sensor of the AFi-ii 12, the DOF can be really small even with the normal focal length.   80mm Xenotar wide open.    You can't even recognize the orange spots as flowers just behind him let alone the cars parked on the street behind.  I know there are very fast lenses out there for DSLR's (I have several f/1.2 lenses for 35mm format) but I believe that this is an area where MF still has advantages.  

Hi Eric,

This is a nice rendering indeed, but there are quite a few lenses in 35mm that can delivery similar results.

Just speaking about the F mount that I know best, some lenses such as the Nikkor 58mm f1.4 have been specifically designed to offer nice bokeh and I think they are doing a good job at that. There are very nice samples over at fredmiranda.com: http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1253369/29

Others such as the Otus have a more generic design but are still doing a pretty good job bokehwise, although the 58mm f1.4 is clearly superior on that metrics. That's first hand experience:



I do unfortunately not own one, but other lenses, such as the 200mm f2.0 do, IMHO, deliver an even nicer rendering, albeit at the cost of weight and size. There are wonderful examples in this thread over at fredmiranda.com too: http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1172604

Cheers,
Bernard

« Last Edit: August 26, 2014, 05:10:18 AM by BernardLanguillier » Logged

A few images online here!
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