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Monday, 30 March 2009


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Oh come on... they said it would be out early 2010 at $10,000. *coughing*

... And just before Nikon introduces their 30MP D5x at $1,000... after which Pentax stops production, and shows another 645D under glass which would boast 50MP to be available in 2013.

I'll never afford such a camera, so I can just sit back, and enjoy the rumors and speculations around it.
Not to mention the humor...

Pentax did state at PIE in Tokyo this weekend that they have a set launch date in next year and a price level hopefully below 1 million yen (feel free to have your pinkie in your mouth as you say it).

You may have to grow old and tycoonish awfully fast for your prediction above to come true. :)

While I certainly cannot make any promises, the following link on the Pentax Japan site says it is due in 2010, along with a 55mm f2.8 lens.


I wonder what the price will be.


Pentax has been showing a mock-up for about 6 years. I think we'll finally see it. Now I wonder about the IKEA Leko car...

One more note: "Anything you regret?" And I'll splutter "But...but..." and then whisper my last words into the ear of my faithful great-grandson. And then I shall expire."

That reminds me of the story told about GB Shaw: Oh, doctor - if I could only live six more years. When the doctor asked why, Shaw replied: Then people could say, 'There was an Irishman who hated the British for a whole hundred years.'

LOL Mike, your comment was the funniest I've seen on the soon-to-be-but-never-actually-released 645 digital Pentax... but I'm sure you will have the pleasure to use it for many years.

Not me, sure: too expensive for an amateur. But this will by my 7 series BMW-like camera: not for me (no way to put a family of 4 kids within such a car), although I can't avoid to dream about it everytime I see one of those in the streets...

I have no personal or potential interest in this Pentax camera, but a replacable back would make the investment easier even if it increased the initial cost.

Whenever I see somebody complaining about this, part of me wants to say that it's likely that it'll be a matter of decades before I'll be able to justify the cost of such a beast, so I personally see no particular rush.

But of course it passes, and I understand that we all benefit from a world in which pros have access to a greater variety of tools with which to create, and that every new player in the medium format digital market creates new competitive forces that will reduce prices and make these technologies available to more people sooner (even if they remain out of reach for folks like me), and that, as a Pentax customer, I stand to derive a number of indirect benefits from the research that goes into building such a thing and from anything that can improve (or, at this point, even just maintain) the health and prestige of the Pentax brand.

And in the end none of that matters either, because when i look deep into myself I know what's actually important is that this sounds like a really cool gadget, which therefore ought to exist as soon as possible.

I see numbers on a top plate! It must be ready to go!

Ouch. That struck home. Cheap shot Mike.
I’ve been holding on to my Pentax 645 lenses during the ongoing announcements of the 645D, expecting that it could be the camera that replaces film for me. I’m also on the far side of 50; I’m not old yet, but I can see it from here.
“Waiting for the 645D” could become a colloquialism for an unfulfilled goal. Oh well, it’s still likely to appear before I get around to reorganizing the garage.

Looks like Pentax is either pushing vaporware, or making yet another marketing blunder. Don't get me wrong, I love some of their quirkier moves. I had a huge Pentax 35 mm system before I got into digital, all the way up to their colossal 600 f:4 lens. I still think Pentax SLR's have the best, most intuitive exposure controls on the planet. But they hamstrung their 645 system by giving it a fixed back with inserts, making it much less flexible than competing systems with interchangeable backs. Looks like they're about to make the same mistake with their digital 645, and this is much more serious. It locks buyers into a fixed sensor at a time when image quality is a moving target. Mamiya likely found this out to their regret with the ZD camera. Even if I had the cash to buy into a medium format digital system (which, pointedly, I don't), I would never lock myself into one with its resolution and image quality set in stone.

fwiw - the forest picture in the background is noted as having been taken with that camera - so it isn't entirely vaporware.

With the cost of backs, aren't they essentially throwing in the camera for free anyway? Fixed back or not.

Forget Imogen Cunningham's father at 90... I'd rather have been Imogen Cunningham at 90... especially when she got to photograph Twinka nude!

Yes, and I have a review of 645D in my new journal, which will be debuting very soon...

@ Geoff Wittig

See third row of images here:


That looks like a user replaceable sensor unit. Cool, crossing fingers!

Mike, you are such an optimist :-P

Are you sure that's Imogen Cunningham's father and not Gene Hackman from "Young Frankenstein?"

Never never never regret. The cards are in your hand, and they're what you've got. Play them as well as you can, and you won't go wrong.

"“Waiting for the 645D” could become a colloquialism for an unfulfilled goal."

You mean like "Waiting For Godot"?

I just can't get enthusiastic about a camera that has so many buttons. I count 20, plus several dials. I think I'll set an upper limit on how many buttons a camera can have before I lose interest. The problem being, having all those buttons means I have to remember what they are there for & that gets in the way of my using the thing.

The 645D looks like the K20D's bigger, fatter brother, and not unlike the way a 6X7 looks compared to a 35mm Pentax. The control layout is very similar to that of the K20D, though not as similar as it could be. If you had both cameras, it would be a bit annoying. (I have a K20D and the layout works well for me.)
On the Impress Watch site one shot shows a row of four buttons on the top of the camera, but the middle two have a bit of black tape over them, hiding their purpose. Hmmmm.
Geoff, if they are aiming for a similar market as the 6X7, it will not matter that it has a fixed back and the sensor cannot be changed, if there are enough pixels and the image quality is good. The 6X7 had a fixed back and did alright.

My income is far too modest to actually own a 645D, but as a Pentax shooter I'm looking forward to the bragging rights. I don't know if Pentax / Hoya can afford to have a loss leader, but they sure could use the mind share that this camera could generate.

"You mean like "Waiting For Godot"?"

Yes, you read my mind, but unlike Godot, I think the 645D will appear. I don’t think Hoya wants the Pentax name to descend to a 2nd class status, especially in Japan. So do they produce a 35mm full frame, “me too” DSLR or do they produce the 645D at a price accessible to dedicated amateurs? When they stopped production of the FA series and replaced them with the DA lenses, they painted themselves into a APS-C corner. Producing the 645D at $10,000 would restore Pentax to a status they held before the digital era. Does it make economic sense for Pentax to do this? I have no idea, but there are motivations other than short term profit (at least there were).

just linked you to my facebook, great blog you have and thanks for shearing, you have my respect

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