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Thread: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

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    Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    It seems I wanted to overlook this camera when it was first released.
    I'm just wondering where we are at with this camera today, and what are the recommended lenses or should we use an adapter?

    In 2012, is this a good camera to have at its price?
    Any advise would be great, and thank you in advance.

    Po

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    I love my 645D. It was/is well worth the price. I have A 35mm, D FA 55mm, A 120mm Marco, and FA 300mm f/5.6 lenses and a Refconverter 90 degree angle finder and waterproof IR remote. I think all the lenses I have are fine. I am finding the d FA 55m is the most maligned lens; I am getting really great work from it. I regularly print out my work on a 44" wide printer.

    I also have the 67 105mm with an adapter. The 120mm macro is just a better lens. With adapted lenses you only have center weighted metering and no aperture control from the body. I have been more than satisfied by the 645 line of lenses, although I understand there are some lenses to be avoided.

    It still is the best value in MFD today. It is also still one of the most advanced camera bodies in MFD. The lens line is at least on par with the Mamiya Phase systems. And the system keeps growing, the third D FA lens is released this year, a GPS unit is available, and tethering is coming.

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    Shashin, thank you sir for sharing

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    I agree with Shashin, it's a wonderful camera and although currently 35mm may be approaching it resolution wise, keep in mind that the FA and DFA lenses are 645 full frame; a full frame 645DII or III is likely to follow. A kit of 35mm, 75mm, 120mm and 200mm would be outstanding and not much more than one Nikon zoom.

    Tom

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    Thanks Tom, so are the DFA more suitable over the FA lenses, I don't quite know the difference, to be honest I don't know Pentax very well at all.

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    A lenses are manual focus. Aperture is controlled by the body but apart from aperture info in the EXIF, no other information is provided like focal length. There are no lens profiles for the A series.

    FA lenses are autofocus. EXIF has focal length and Pentax has made lens profiles for ACR.

    D FA are the new line of lenses for the Pentax MFD camera(s).

    Some of the A and FA lenses have the same optics like the 120mm macro--both versions are excellent. Some do not, like the 150mm (the FA has an excellent reputation, the A does not) and the 35mm (the A has a slightly better reputation for edge sharpness but a bit more CA than the FA version).

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    My list of lenses:
    FA 35 3,5 a perfect lens in my experience
    67 55 f4, big,big but extremely good center to corner from full open
    FA 75 2,8 light, low cost, extremely useful and a very good performer
    67 105 2,8 seems good, but still no experience
    FA 120 4 everything has been said.....
    FA 150 2,8 fantastic general pourpose, CA full open, but sharp and light
    A 200 4 light, not always easy to focus, but sharp full open
    FA*300 4 perfect, but a big tripod with lens-camera mounting plate required
    FA 45-85 4,5 weak on right and left lower corners till f11 sharp center

    That said, the camera is the best I ever had for my work (aerials) and is in my opinion the most practical MFD with a quality level adequate for every job.
    Problem I see in 2012 is that the list of used lenses available on ebay is get-
    ting everyday shorter,and this can create real problems for newcomers.

    Sergio
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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    I think all of the posts and contributions posted in this thread are excellent and certainly mirror my own experience with the 645D and most all of the FA autofocus lenses. When price/performance along with handling and features is taken into account, it is a very capable system, especially considering the price of entry for most other MF systems. Although I am used to and well versed in using manual focus lenses (since the 70's) for some demanding work, I decided to use primarily the autofocus lenses for this system and have not been disappointed for the most part.

    To be fair and to present a balanced view, I have noticed that there is a fair amount of sample to sample variation between various samples of a given lens (after testing out many of each) and also considerable differences as to the Af fine tune setting required for each of these lenses used with the 645D, that's necessary to ensure if one is to extract the best possible performance for these lenses. It seems to stem primarily from the film era and Pentax's acceptable adjustment and tolerance for their use on that medium. Even brand new "old stock" seems to reflect this and so it's not a consequence on how a lens has been handled (and thus reflecting changes to the lens over time). Pentax was smart to include the ability to Af fine tune individual lenses and although some may not initially notice differences, if crops at various f-stops are carefully examined, adjustment is warranted.

    Although some of these lenses are not available as much at bargain prices as they were months ago, they still can be found at very reasonable prices. I do hope Pentax does keep in mind price when releasing their new lenses, to keep this system relatively economical.

    With careful techniques and exposure, even ISO 800 is amazingly clean and useful (under the right conditions). If I had to take an educated guess, I would assume the next step for this body would be an increase of resolution to 60MP (but keeping with current ISO performance) yet also keeping with the "cropped" factor of the current chip (sensor). Sometime down the road after that, the move to 645 full frame, starting at 60MP, to allow increased ISO performance might be the step after that.

    Dave (D&A)
    Last edited by D&A; 20th February 2012 at 09:41.
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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    I couldn't be any later in replying back to this thread :P
    Thanks for your inputs. I am trying to look at a more budgeted approach into MF, so have started asking questions, and have only made some time for some catch up reading. Thanks!
    Po

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    I can only endorse what has been said about the 645D. I've had mine several months now and I think it is a great camera, ISO performance is excellent for CCD sensor, camera FW and controls are both great, build is really excellent, not as heavy as a Hasselblad. I have the 55mm DFA lens and the 75mm FA, both are excellent performers. I also have the 80-160 FA zoom which I dont think has the crispness of the two primes.

    I'm thinking about either the 55-110 zoom or the 45-85. The first has the more useful range for me but is only f5.6 and I wonder if I'll be able to use it handheld. The second is heavier and appears to have better reviews and a slightly wider aperture but only goes to 85. I would like to use the 645D for some street photography and a zoom would be more flexible than my primes. Does anyone have any views on the merits of these two zoom lenses? Are they better than the 80-160FA?

    Jeff

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    Jeff;

    The 45-85 is excellent especialy at the wider end. I don't think it's a good street lens however. It makes the camera much larger (especialy with the huge lens shade) and noticeable. I much prefer the 75 and 55 combo, adding maybe the 35mm and 150 or 200.

    The 150 f/3.5 is a much underrated lens IMO - small light and sharp... ok, it's slow.

  12. #12
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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    Thanks, that is exactly what I feared about the 45-85. I'll investigate the 150mm although it is a bit long.

    Jeff

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    Hi Jeff,

    Just adding to the excellent advice you've received from others...When it comes to some of the Penatx FA AF 645 lens, I often hesitate to make definitive statements about some models of lenses, since a good deal of lens variation (sample to sample), exists.

    As Tom aptly pointed out, the Fa 45-85 is an excellent lens optically, with it weakening somewhat at its longer end, although some samples at 85mm are a lot better than other samples. He's correct, relatively speaking it's a lens with considerable "mass" and a large lens shade and although very good, wouldn't be my first chocie for street photography. The 55-110 optically is close to the 45-85mm.

    The FA 150mm f2.8 is a relatively light weight lens and most samples are optically superb. ON the 645D, it's equivelent to a 120mm lens on full frame 35mm. The diminutive FA75mm f2.8 is an old design and when stopped down is very good but at f2.8and f4 is simple just OK. The WR 55mm f2.8 is a decently-good lens but edge sharpness suffers in most all sampls at f2.8 and f4 and a bit at f5.6

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Pentax 645D, where are we today in 2012?

    Just wondering if anyone has hear of a New Pentax 645D 11 coming out. I was Downtown Toronto, Canada and visited Henry's Camera Store. They have maybe over 20 Locations. This store carries more of the Pro Equipment than the other. I saw the Pentax 645D for $5,750.00 plus Taxes. That is an excellent price. I paid mine around $10,500.00 plus taxes almost 2 years ago. I know they were selling for $6,999.00 6 months ago. But this Price now. I asked the Sales Lady if this was the price for the Demo and she said I would get a brand new one in a Box never opened. Great Deal. I am thinking of getting another body and not carrying my DSLR with me at the weddings any longer. I am wondering if maybe there is another newer version coming out and this 645D will be discontinued. Any advise would be appreciated.

    M.Z.

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