Pentax appeal

Started May 29, 2012 | Discussions thread
Marc Sabatella
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,679
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Re: Pentax appeal
In reply to Egglestonworks, May 29, 2012

Egglestonworks wrote:

Sorry I only meant that they weren't heavily built like the top pro models from Nikon and canon.

Certainly pentax cameras feel as substantial as most of the other cameras, but I haven't seen a tank-like model.

If by tank-like you mean unnecessarily large and heavy, you are correct. Pentax has always prided themselves on amazing build quality in a smaller and lighter package than the competition. So no, it's not just that that they are "as substantial as most of the other cameras", it's that virtually every single model Pentax has produced is significantly more substantial than anything else in its size/weight/price class. Only a small handful of Penax models have been only average in build quality - most are noticeably above average, to the point of being the only cameras in their class, period.

For me, coming to Pentax before the advent of SR, I have to say build quality and ergonomics were the main draw. This was obvious in every way when comparing the *istDS against the closest competing Canon or Nikon models. It felt better in all ways that mattered in terms of actual durability as well as usability. It was just obviously a better designed and made camera than the others (most obviously so when compared to the Canon; the Nikon was a less distant second). Oh yeah, being ale to run on AA's was and remains a huge plus for the consumer models.

Other things have changed since. In addition to the build quality and ergonomics of the cameras (look up "Green button" and weep), SR is one of the reasons I will never leave Pentax unless forced to. But so are the amazing lenses - amazing optically, but also in their build quality and in their intelligent choice of focal lengths, and of course their small size. Plus the legendary backward compatibility.

My regular kit is the ruggedly built and weather sealed K200D, which retailed for $600 or so - unheard to have a camera that well built for that cheap - three all-metal and pocketable Limited primes (DA15, DA40, DA70), and an old manual focus all-metal M120/2.8 that meters, works, and renders just beautifully, and is also probably the smallest/lightest lens of that focal length & aperture ever made.

I would submit that not a single element of this ki*t could be reproduced in a Canon or Nikon kit. They have never once in their history produced a camera remotely like the K200D or lenses like the DA15, DA40, or DA70, and if they ever had anything like the old M120/2.8, it wouldn't work with any of the modern cameras. I'd have to replace this with a kit that weighed about twice as much and required twice as big a bag. And if I wanted to come close to the amazing build quality (including water sealing on the body and all-metal construction of the lenses) of this combo, it would cost me twice as much as my kit cost me. No thanks.

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