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Saturday, 03 December 2022


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I preferred the Ilford 120 black and white film over the Kodak product.

I know that purists would say it doesn't matter, based on history, but its 2022 and the obvious advantage for a WYSIWYG finder is able to be experienced easily now. A B&W only camera that doesn't allow the shooter to see the image in monochrome seems dated.

The Leica M Mono people will argue, but they are already using a historical system that predates the current year, thus my "based on history" point. The Leica Q Mono users are surely enjoying the mirrorless advantage. When I shoot in B&W today with my mirrorless system, I am always happy to see that Monochrome image in the finder with perfect rendition of the filter effect and tweakable contrast that I can see on the screen. And I shot B&W film in Leica M and Nikon SLRs for decades, but now I know the mirrorless advantage to be too good to ignore.

I would bet that we shall NOT see a Pentax SLR based monochrome camera.

£100 here

There's one at an Oxfam for £100 here...


I own two digital cameras and about 20 old film cameras. About 6 months ago I purchased a Mamiya C330 and 55mm lens. Loaded with Ilford Pan f+ I can get some really nice B&W tones with a smoothness that is hard to beat. Shoot @ ISO 25 and develop in a weak Pyro/Metol developing solution which tames the high contrast tendencies of the film. Slow to use sure but a hell of a lot fussy than large format.

Today I made what I think might be my first really good darkroom print. Considering what I read here about the cost of a digital B&W setup including the printer and ink than I don’t feel I am in such a bad place with a real B&W sensor 😎

My wife has a good photographic eye, but never paid much attention to cameras. I thought she should push it a little, so I bought her a Pentax APS-C and several nice lenses. Then she discovered the iPhone camera, and hasn't picked up the Pentax since. I've been uncertain about what to do with the camera and lenses, since they're basically unused, and I have my own Nikons. If this Monochrom Pentax comes true...problem solved. I would buy one in a heartbeat.

You're usually spot on, but the real ultimate B&W sensor for me was Panatomic-X until it was discontinued. Developed properly, it gave lovely smooth near-grainless negs that enlarged beautifully.

Don't know if this is "palatable" or not for you; but there is this:


Long time follower; good luck with your site!

I followed your earlier advice and picked up a Sony A7. What a beauty. BW. Excellent dynamic range. BW seen in the EVF and on the LCD to help judge composition and lighting. Avoiding filtering (for the most part) by working in human perception modeling.

It's so much fun because images "feel" like my old large format film output, only better.

All I need now is to find a way to get Leonard Misonne style skies.

Pentax may well just shut those naysayers' mouths up by manufacturing a top notch camera, affordably priced monochrome monster that will make the likes of Leica shake, shudder, foam in the mouths and weak in the knees! Just wait and see.

In the world of astrophotography monochrome sensors are quite common. In fact it’s very common to see the same camera with the same sensor sold in both mono and color versions- for the same price. And even more ironically, they tend to sell at about the same price as a mirrorless or DSLR. Example: the 61mp Sony a7Rv is listed at $3898; the 64mp ZWO ASI6200 is listed at $3799

Fuji X-ProM is a good one if they finally decide to go B&W. Low rent Leica for the masses. Good lens, good performance and a nice combination for street shooting coupled with the "fujichrons".

The video clip from those Arri monochrome cameras is strongly remniscent of Agfa Scala, the 200 ISO black-and-white slide film that I experimented with for a few years in the 1990s and early 2000s. I loved the look of the slides when projected, and the tonality was similar; not just because of the transmissive medium, I think, but, in the case of the Arris, by a design aesthetic that must value the same visual feel as that of the Agfa film chemists of all those years ago.

Maybe contact his wife’s gallery and see if there are any copies lurking in a box in the back room?


Although it's always fun to complain, changing something on a production line is expensive. Sensors would have to be pulled off the line before the filter is added and it would make a lot of changes to the test methodology. Although the individual production cost would not change, the "Non-Recurring Engineering" costs would be significant and would have to be divided amongst the number of items sold

Personally I like the ability to "use color filters" when converting a color digital image to monochrome. I also like the look of a heavily desaturated image, rather than pure black and white. However no one in their right mind would consider what I do fine art. I'm really a nerd with too many lenses


Using Pentax and the motto is 'I don't have to care!' — not caring about new this, new that - we've stepped off the rat race. Pick your format, pick a set of lens, pick an accessory or two (TC, Astrotracer, M42 mount adapter, etc) - off you go. If you need help, it's there and will allow you to grow, if you don't, well there are a few functions that shout Eureka to even hardened, grizzly photogs. It's a choice.


I am pretty sure a first-party manufacturer has to do a little more than just remove the Bayer array and maybe install some glass to make up for it in order to sell a true monochrome sensor. Like, tune the processing engine for it. The standard K3 III has a bunch of JPEG modes which will be meaningless if the sensor is monochrome only. You can't sell a product like that.

So, if they go about it the proper way, you're going to be able to utilize the camera more like the way the Leica monochrom models work. And possibly get some better results with less work than with a converted camera. That's just common sense. You might be right about the high price. If Pentax treats this as a boutique option, it could be quite costly. But if they treat it a little more like their "special" silver DSLRs and lenses, it'll cost a reasonable amount more than the standard. And some folks will go for it. Personally as a K1 mark II shooter I'd be envious of the rendering of some of those DA Limited lenses, like the 3.2/21, on a tuned monochrome sensor. Not envious enough to buy it. But close.

I would gladly drop ten bucks a roll for 120 TXP but alas it is gone forever.

Film Photography

I followed the Arri link. It is only for rental "if you have the budget," and following that link, the price is "contact us".

If you have to ask the price, it is too much. I wonder how many Sigmas + conversions you can get for a week with an Arri monochrome.

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