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Thread: Pentax 645D

  1. #101
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Hi, after reading this thread up and down, forward and backwards - also reading others here, I decided to join. It seemed like a lot of objective and knowledgeable people here, so I'll just jump to the question

    I'm having a luxury problem - I got the Pentax 645D but stroke of faith with the 120 F4 macro and 55mm kit lense, for 4500 USD dollars almost unused - 2000 auctions. I already have the H4D-31 with 35-90 and D800 with 14-24 and up to 70-200. So I'm thinking that I need some lenses for the Pentax, but I won't buy lenses for it which are useless or allready covered buy what I have. By that I mean that unless the pose as a good lense for the Pentax I can save my money from buying it.

    I have already gotten the 200 mm F4 and 80-160, I got both for 500 usd inc shipping and tax to Norway at very good condition. I'm thinking that since I have a very wide lense for Nikon, and when testing on the road today - I thought that 35 mm on Hassy worked fine, 14-24 on 35mm became to wide and hard to work with, and with 40 MP I have some place to cut.

    I'm thinking of buying:

    35 mm FA
    45 mm FA

    I think that those two, or at least the 35 mm would cover my need for landscape, as I have the macro for food and plantlife, and the 80-160/200 for portraits.

    Also - after testing today, I do think that hasselblad is about to be sold later this year...it's not a big loss for me, but using it on the road to Bergen in Norway and rain came down...I was less concerned with the Pentax than Hassy

    I hope that someone has time to look at this - non of my friends are used to MF, so I had to find other places to ask questions like this. I'll upload some pictures later

    Thanks in advance, and also - apologies if my english isn't all that good..I'm Norwegian
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  2. #102
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Welcome.

    Both 35mm lenses are good for different reasons. The manual version has kind of a cult following. I have it and it is very nice.

    Based on reviews, I did not get the 45mm. It seems to be one of the consistently poor performing lens for the 645D. The 45-85mm zoom is considered much better if you want that focal length.

    The 150mm is highly rated as are the 300mm f/4 and 400 f/5.6 telephotos. (The 600mm is great too, but rare.) I have the 300mm f/5.6 because of its size and weight--it is not a focal length I use often. It is OK, but I find the contrast a little low, but nothing that can't be fixed in post.

    I am sure other will add to this, although I think we all own the same lenses.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Hi, thanks a lot - both for welcome and help

    I think I'll drop the 45mm then - but I figured I wanted the 35 mm, since using it with my Hassy has worked very well. Ebay is such a nice thing :P

  4. #104
    Senior Member Ed Hurst's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Another vote for the 35mm (I would get the A version if I were you...)

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Is there a reason for the A version? I found the FA version for reasonable price - in Norway they claim bloodprices for these lenses...about 3300 USD for a new one, and the used ex++ was 800 usd...

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    If you have a good price for the FA, I'd say for for it (I must have missed that part of your message). Apparently the A is said to do slightly better overall on the 645D, but since both are so good, if you have a good deal on the FA, you will be happy with it.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by Ed HUrst View Post
    If you have a good price for the FA, I'd say for for it (I must have missed that part of your message). Apparently the A is said to do slightly better overall on the 645D, but since both are so good, if you have a good deal on the FA, you will be happy with it.
    My bad, I didn't say anything about that - I assumed the FA would be recommended. Tomorrow its 17. May so I'll have a lot to take pictures of...I need to test the 200 mm and 80-160 mm. But with 35 mm - 55 mm - 80 - 160mm - 120 mm - 200 mm...I should have what I need?

  8. #108
    Senior Member Ed Hurst's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    That selection of lenses should cover most eventualities! Of course one could always make a case for others in addition, but that is a good set to get going with.

  9. #109
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    I have 35mm, 55mm, 120mm, and 300mm.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Give some thought to the Pentax 645 75mm f2.8 lens. Everything I've read is that this little fast lens performs very well on the 645D. You can find excellent examples for very low prices at KEH.com etc.

    Perhaps Dave (D&A) will chime in here soon with a link to the extensive lens tests he has done. There are also excellent lens reviews on the Pentax forum.

    Gary

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    Senior Member Ed Hurst's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    My line up is the following 645 lenses: 35mm A, 55mm DFA, 120mm macro A, 150 f2.8 FA, 45-85 FA and the following 67 lenses: 55 f4, 75 f2.8AL, 90 f2.8, 90 f2.8L/S, 105 f2.4, 135mm f4 macro, 150 f2.8, 165 f2.8, 200 F4, 300 F4EDIF and 55-100 f4.5. Do let me know if you want any info. on the performance of any of these on the 645D.

    As you can see, quite a bit of duplication here (it's a collection that has built up piecemeal over 13 years - with changing objectives in different periods - so it is hardly a coherent or sensible set to own; there are lenses here I hardly use now due to the duplication) - so I am certainly not advocating that you build up a set like this. Less is more!
    Last edited by Ed Hurst; 16th May 2013 at 15:51. Reason: Giving more info

  12. #112
    Senior Member Ed Hurst's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    Perhaps Dave (D&A) will chime in here soon with a link to the extensive lens tests he has done. There are also excellent lens reviews on the Pentax forum.

    Gary

    Good point Gary - Dave (D&A)'s tests are very interesting and useful. They do not include 67 glass at this stage as far as I know (not a criticism of your excellent and exhaustive work Dave - it lay outside the scope) - I only mention this because 67 glass is, in some cases, a strong option for the 645D if you don't need speed. Nevertheless, I would suggest anyone reads Dave's work before investing in glass for the 645D - compulsory reading!
    Last edited by Ed Hurst; 16th May 2013 at 16:15.

  13. #113
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    I had the Pentax 105mm 67 lens for my 645D. It was a good lens, but I replaced it with the 120mm Macro. With 67 lenses, you are limited to center weighted metering and, at least with my 105mm, the AWB seemed to be different. AWB is much better in the A 120mm in side-by-side test. I also like to control the aperture with the camera dial rather than on the lens--you do not get aperture information in the viewfinder with 67 lenses.

    Still, that is not to say 67 lenses cannot be fine, just given the 645 counterparts, I am not sure of the benefits.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Link to Dave's review:

    Comprehensive Testing: Results & Observations with Pentax 645 Lenses used on the 645D - The GetDPI Photography Forums

    Agree with all the comments, in particular Gary's about the 75m-small, light, sharp, inexpensive.
    Last edited by tsjanik; 16th May 2013 at 20:23.

  15. #115
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by tsjanik View Post
    Link to Dave's review:

    Comprehensive Testing: Results & Observations with Pentax 645 Lenses used on the 645D - The GetDPI Photography Forums

    Agree with all the comments, in particular Gary's about the 75m-small, light, sharp, inexpensive.
    Hi Tom,

    I just caught this thread and everyone has offered some great advice!

    Thanks ever so much for posting the link to my comprehensive lens tests for Pentax 645 lenses.

    A few responses to some of the comments made. The Pentax FA 75mm f2.8 lens is a little gem. When stopped down a few stops it's very sharp and contrasty but many samples do suffer from high levels of CA when reflective items are present and shot under bright sunlight.

    Since I performed my initial lens tests I had a chance to compare more samples of the 35mm A* manual focus 645 lens vs the FA 35mm AF 645 lens....since there are a lot of user opinions regarding these two similar lenses. I cannot make any definitive statement about the differences since sample to sample variation is quite prevalent (especially with the Fa version), but as a general comment I have noted slightly to somewhat better edge performance at infinity in the manual focus A* 35mm version but also a higher level of CA on occasion. The FA version displays a greater amount of field curvature that gives the appearance of softer edges with flat field objects primarily towards mid-distance and infinity subjects, but CA is appears to be better controlled. It's therefore a tradeoff depending on ones needs and also the convenience of having AF.

    As noted, the FA 45-85 zoom is excellent, especially towards the wider end. It's a gem of a lens, and convenient to use. Some samples at the long end are better than others...but when a good one is found, it's definitely worth having.

    A very underrated lens is the FA 150 f2.8...a wonderful portrait lens, that almost feels like it's missing elements, its so light (especially for such a fast lens) and makes a great pairing with the FA 45-85mm zoom.

    Personally I much prefer the FA 150mm f2.8 that to the FA 200 f4 for a variety of reasons, although a good sample of the latter is decent, but best when stopped down...making it quite a slow lens.

    Much of this info is in the comprehensive lens tests. Lastly thanks everyone for your kind words. Everyone's contributions to the 645D system has made this a wonderful and valuable resource for Pentax medium format.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    As Tom as pointed out, the Pentax A* 600mm f5.6 lens isn't quite as large as it appears. It's a superb performer although I find I don't often use it often enough...whereas the FA 300 f4 645 lens is simply spectacular and of course more manageable in size.

    One issue with the 25mm D FA lens is it exhibits an unusually high level of CA and it's been somewhat of a problem for nature shooters. The DA version which is from all indications is optically similar, has tried to eliviate this problem by extending out the built in front hood to shield the front element. I suspect (but have no proof) that some additional coating may have been employed to also address the CA issue.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    I had the FA and A 35mm lenses. I kept the A version; they are both good lenses, but I didn't care for the field curvature Dave refers to in the FA. You could use it to advantage in certain situations (e.g. center focus far, edges closer). Here is a shot taken with 35mm A and a crop of the lower left edge. The edge sharpness of the A is quite good.

    Tom

    Christians86, I wouldn't hesitate to buy an FA for $800, it's a very good price. In fact, it might be better if you didn't mention what good prices you paid, many of us paid more




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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by tsjanik View Post

    Christians86, I wouldn't hesitate to buy an FA for $800, it's a very good price. In fact, it might be better if you didn't mention what good prices you paid, many of us paid more


    Sorry - In Norway people tend to think that D800 etc is the same as MF, and its a small marked for this, also I don't think people know what to find on ebay if they try.
    But last question - I can get the A version for 520 USD and the FA for 860 USD...if autofoucus is the only difference and I'm going to use it for landscape - it might be money well saved, and also I can buy the 45-85 for +/- the difference. Would that be better? (Sorry to ask "stupid" question - but I found that people here have experience with these, non of my friends have)

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    I kept the A and sold the FA, so my recommendation would be to buy the A and save the money. It really comes down to AF or not.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    It may or may not be a tough choice in deciding between the A* and FA versions. In my opinion is it depends on what is primarily being shot with the lens and how it's going to be used. For close up and close-mid distance shots, the field curvature of the FA is held to a minimum and the edge to edge sharpness is extremely good into the corners with little to no trace of CA evident. As the subject distance becomes greater, the field curvature of the lens is quite evident and as Tom pointed out, may play a role in soft corners, especially if your subject is a landscape where all detail (center and edge) is near infinity.

    It also appeared the FA version had the ultimate edge in center sharpness...not a lot but it could be seen in crops.

    I did encounter more CA in the A* lens, especially with brightly lit scenes.

    Interestingly, when I physically look at the front element of the FA lens, it's is curved and quite bulbous...whereas the A* version isn't. I wonder if this has anything to do with the field curvature?

    In any case the A* is a best buy and generally has less to be concerned with. The FA is fussy...sample variation in terms of getting proper AF fine tune nailed is great but when all the stars align (so to speak), the FA provides some remarkably good performance and AF in certain instances is handy.

    If you can test both on your 645D, you'll know which one to get...if not, the safe bet and always an excellent performer is the A* lens.

    I hope to revisit this comparison in the near future.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Pentax 645D





    Lot of yapping but no real action . Lets get some images up .
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    One thing about the 35mm A is it will flare when pointing towards the sun. I am not sure about the FA. But at least you don't have to add the flare effect in Photoshop later with the A.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Most of us post the the "Fun with MF" thread, but the Pentax forum has a "Fun with 645D" thread:

    http://www.getdpi.com/forum/pentax/23861-fun-645d.html

    That thread, especially toward the beginning, has some lens examples.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    FYI: 645DvsD800EvsIQ160

    It's not a scientific test by any stretch but its a good comparison. Keep in mind the lens equivalents are not identical so the 645D seems slightly zoomed in and the Nikon a hair zoomed out.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post

    Lot of yapping but no real action . Lets get some images up .

    I'm doing my part; Gary started this thread and he just got a new camera, seems he should be posting

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    One thing about the 35mm A is it will flare when pointing towards the sun. I am not sure about the FA. But at least you don't have to add the flare effect in Photoshop later with the A.
    Ironically I was just playing with the 35mm in my yard yesterday. No lens shade and the sun directly hitting the front element. At the top center of this image is an interesting example of flare where light has been dispersed into the spectral colors.
    Just as some see faces or figures in pieces of toast etc., I see this as a French flag and a clear message that I should take a vacation there as soon as possible.





    _IGP1636 by tsjanik47, on Flickr
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  26. #126
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by tsjanik View Post
    I see this as a French flag and a clear message that I should take a vacation there as soon as possible.
    Another avantage to the A version--travel prompts.

    Tom, what lens hood do you use with your 35mm? I have been going a la mode.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Another avantage to the A version--travel prompts.

    Tom, what lens hood do you use with your 35mm? I have been going a la mode.
    One like this:

    77mm Rubber Collapsible Lens Hood for Canon EF 10 22mm 24 70mm 70 200mm 24mm | eBay

    I think B&H has something similar and likely better made; this one works however.

    I have the standard rubber Pentax hood for this lens, but it's pretty much useless on the 645D. It looks like a Frisbee with a hole in the center.
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Delivery of my 645D has been delayed by a few days. I hope it arrives here in Alaska by Tuesday or Wednesday. It was shipped 2 days ago, but not from Pentax NA distributor's warehouse, direct from the factory (or a distribution center?) in the Philippines. According to the Fedex tracking info it arrived at Incheon, Korea at 10:33 pm Friday....getting closer!

    Gary
    Last edited by bensonga; 18th May 2013 at 12:56.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    Delivery of my 645D has been delayed by a few days. I hope it arrives here in Alaska by Tuesday or Wednesday. It was shipped 2 days ago, but not from Pentax NA distributor's warehouse, direct from the factory (or a distribution center?) in the Philippines. According to the Fedex tracking info it arrived at Incheon, Korea at 10:33 pm Friday....getting closer!

    Gary
    Look forward to it - it's a lovely camera, and so easy to take sharp pictures handheld. Although the 1/125 flashpart bugs me a bit... probably because first time I wasn't especially happy with the results.

  30. #130
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    One thing about the 35mm A is it will flare when pointing towards the sun. I am not sure about the FA. But at least you don't have to add the flare effect in Photoshop later with the A.
    Don't know if this is another difference to note about these two different 35mm lenses or not, but I don't ever recall a time where flair was noticable in an image taken with the FA 35mm. I haven't specifically tested for it but might just do that when I'm out next with the 645D and all this rain has ended.

    Dave (D&A)
    Last edited by D&A; 20th May 2013 at 13:39.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    Delivery of my 645D has been delayed by a few days. I hope it arrives here in Alaska by Tuesday or Wednesday. It was shipped 2 days ago, but not from Pentax NA distributor's warehouse, direct from the factory (or a distribution center?) in the Philippines. According to the Fedex tracking info it arrived at Incheon, Korea at 10:33 pm Friday....getting closer!

    Gary

    Gary,

    I could come up with a few reasons why your camera is taking the circuitous route getting to Alaska.

    1. It starts out as basically a 645D body shell and parts are added bit by bit along the way at each stopover you noted.

    2. In a word.."QC". Pentax has a new worldwide QC program where your 645D box is opened at ever stop and employees located there (including postal inspectors) have a go with your camera taking happy snaps and family pics...um..I mean do an in-depth analysis of all electrical circuit boards and the sensor...LOL!

    3. The stop over in Korea is the last step in checking 645D durability when it's attached to the tip of one of the missiles fired daily there into nearby waters. The camera is highly water resistant you know!

    Possibly all three reasons are accurate and by the time your camera arrives, it will stand up to anything, including those bumpy rides over the rough Alaskan tundra in your lovely BMW.

    Dave (D&A)
    Last edited by D&A; 20th May 2013 at 20:27.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    I heard it was in a custom body shop in Venus getting some racing stripes airbrushed on . Guess they are trying to get higher ISO. Lol

    Hope you don't get skateboard graphics instead
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Guy, I think you are referring to this:

    PENTAX - 645D Limited Edition

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    If I wasn't already so paranoid about this unusual "direct from the 'factory'" shipment...you guys would have me rolling in the aisle with laughter.

    I'm picking up the 645D on Tuesday...so I'll soon know whether this camera is a very special edition, or simply the latest example of "just in time delivery".

    Also, contrary to my earlier stated view about not needing an autofocus lens...I ordered the new 55mm lens today from B&H Photo, with next day air delivery. I decided I'd like to have at least ONE lens specifically designed for the 645D....and since I wasn't ready to spend ~$5k for the 25 or 90 mm lenses, I went the "cheap" route.

    My wife wonders....what's so CHEAP about spending another $1,200??

    Gary

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Actually, I really like the 55mm D-FA. And since it makes the camera weatherproof, it has that added benefit. I have had ice form on my body while shooting in a snow storm and I did not have to worry about it--same for the camera.
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Gary I'm sending you my baseball helmet. Now don't get to excited its not in new condition. It's really beat to **** and broken in very nicely. My wife will happy to lend her bat too, big dents in it but works efficiently.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Thanks Guy! I hope you sent that beat up baseball helmet to me via next day air. I need it ASAP....and it's not for the first time. ;-)

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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Actually, I really like the 55mm D-FA. And since it makes the camera weatherproof, it has that added benefit. I have had ice form on my body while shooting in a snow storm and I did not have to worry about it--same for the camera.
    That's good to know...a few people have told me this lens is not worth the price of admission, so I'm glad to hear that's not always so.

    Gary

  39. #139
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Exciting day for you Gary. That's good that you will pick up the shipment. When I bought mine from the Pentax webstore, they sent it standard UPS-no signature required-so I arrived home one day to find my $10,000 camera sitting in a box on my front step!

    If you'd reallly like use of Guy's helmet, I may be selling my 67 f2.8 75mm AL soon; I can't buy anything more until I sell some previous purchases.

    Tom

  40. #140
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Hard to believe....but I finally have the 645D in hand.

    I exchanged 3 bags full of micro 4/3rds gear, a D800e and $264 for one 645D. It feels like a pretty good exchange to me.

    The battery is charging as I write this note. The 55mm DFA lens I ordered from B&H arrived this morning and is mounted up. I put the camera & lens in a new Think Tank CityWalker 20 (blue/black) bag and still have room for a couple of small lenses (35, 75 or 150 perhaps). The RRS plates for the 645D are on the way here. I've got a large Pelican case which will hold a substantial number of my other P645/P67 lenses, when needed (road trip!).

    I think I'm finally ready to go shooting.

    Gary
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  41. #141
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Congrats. My Pentax cost me most of my film gear.


  42. #142
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by D&A View Post
    I don't ever recall a time where flair was noticable in an image taken with the FA 35mm.
    Bluntly stating that Pentax shooters exhibit no flair in their images is surely going just a bit too far? I mean, we Mamiya shooters clearly have far more photographic flair, but we don't tend to go around pointing that out!

    Ray

  43. #143
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    I exchanged 3 bags full of micro 4/3rds gear, a D800e and $264 for one 645D.
    Baa baa black sheep, have you any micro 4/3rds gear?
    Yes sir, yes sir, 3 bags full.


    Sorry, couldn't resist.

    Ray
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  44. #144
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Who invited this guy?













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  45. #145
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    Hard to believe....but I finally have the 645D in hand.

    .....$264 for one 645D. It feels like a pretty good exchange to me...........



    Gary
    I can't believe you paid only $264!!! What a deal.
    Let's see some pics.

  46. #146
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Quote Originally Posted by tsjanik View Post
    I can't believe you paid only $264!!! What a deal.
    Let's see some pics.
    Gary, I'll double your profit and pay you 2x $264.00 plus a whole bag of NIB Tiffen filters of all sizes and colors for your new 645D. I doubt anyone will top my offer so quickly pack it up and send it off to me. Once received I'll send a check, filters and even include a brand new Leica lens cleaning cloth thats covered in the famous red dots. You can imagine how much this cloth is worth...nothing by Leica is cheap...LOL!

    By the way congratulations on receiving your 645D. No trains, planes and automobile pics for your first shots. We're expecting the majestic mountains of Alaska in the background with lots of wildlife to round out the image. Can't wait to see your first posted shots. Have fun!

    Dave (D&A)

  47. #147
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Yes, I was surprised at how much m4/3rds gear I had accumulated. I even had a few lenses which I had never used and/or forgot that I even owned (such as the Olympus 60mm macro, by most accounts, an excellent lens).

    It all added up to a nice sized trade-in allowance for the camera of my dreams...the 645D.

    It's going to be tough finding subjects worthy of this camera however...majestic mountains, Alaskan wildlife....yikes! The pressure is too much...maybe I'll just keep shooting with my 12 megapixel D700 for now.

    Gary

  48. #148
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Congratulation to your deal and the new Pentax! But never tell your wife, how much money you have lost with your 4/3-gear... ( I think ).

    Sometimes you have to buy twice... Hope you arrived now.
    And I want to see pictures, too.
    __________________
    Christian
    P.S.: If your wife knows everything... it's mostly not good for your gear.

  49. #149
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    As most people here know (and as my friends and wife would attest), I normally hate to part with any of my photo gear, because more often than not, I've regretted it later. In this case, the prize was worth the cost and I'm certain that with a 645D in hand, I will not miss the micro 4/3rds gear or even the D800.

    I've been waiting a long, long time to get my hands on this camera, beginning many years before the 645D was actually released. I'm sure there are others here who were in the same boat, wondering if we would ever see the 645D become reality. It's a great feeling to actually hold one in my hands tonight!

    Gary
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  50. #150
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    Re: Pentax 645D

    Anyone who followed the convoluted, on again-off again, tortuous, delayed appearance of the 645D, is amazed and delighted when one finally appears. Enjoy the camera.

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