audiobomber: Hopefully the K-3 II review will be written by Dan Bracaglia and Rishi Sanyal. They did a great job on the A77 II review, especially the focus testing. The K-3 was sabotaged by all the wrong settings for the AF-C test.
@Rishi Sanyal: Just wanted to give you a big thumbs up for showing interest in what may have gone wrong in the K-3 AF test.
Unfortunately, even advice from Ricoh directly may not have been optimal, depending on who your contact was.
I personally don't know the test well enough to comment any further, but I nevertheless wanted to applaud your attitude and would encourage you to listen to falconeyes. Please contact him, if his suggestions were not 100% clear to you. He really knows what he is talking about and you have a chance to become an industry leader if you can come up with an adequate CAF testing approach.
Class A: "...we're disappointed by ... the disappearance of the built-in flash..."
Really? P-TTL is so bad at controlling more than one off-camera flash, why would you put up with such a bad optical triggering system (that does not even support HSS through the built-in flash and requires line-of-sight)?
Using a dedicated radio trigger on camera with direct control over manual flash levels right from the camera position is so much better and adequate for a camera in this price bracket.
@falconeyes: I share your concerns. I surmise GPS was considered a good fit to the profile of an "outdoors" camera.
Still, I would have left GPS to an external unit and would have thought Wi-Fi integration to support composition in the field, photo sharing, and image transfer, made more sense.
I also agree that Pentax should have developed a radio-based flash system by now. However, at least third-party solutions are available already. While they don't offer automatic flash exposure support, they nevertheless provide competent control of multiple off-camera flashes with predictable results.
Even flash systems better than P-TTL are limited when they use optical triggering.
WIth a pop-up flash you won't have much reach and will struggle with flashes within light modifiers (e.g., softboxes).
Using a dedicated master flash on camera increases reach but still requires line of sight. Joe McNally only puts up with this nonsense when he promotes CLS.
So no, any way you dice it, a measly pop-up flash is justified on a point and shoot, but not on a top class DSLR.
Sony and Canon have had models without a pop-up flash, so Ricoh is not exactly breaking new ground here.
"...we're disappointed by ... the disappearance of the built-in flash..."
chillgreg: Does the pixel shift technology mean that this camera can emulate a Foveon sensor's output?
Yes, with improved sensitivity and better colour separation.
However, this will only work optimally with the camera on a very stable tripod and a completely still scene.
A Foveon sensor does not require such constraints to capture full colour information for each pixel.
Can't help but think adding Wi-Fi would have been more useful than GPS (that hopefully can be turned off in order to save battery life).
Otherwise, it is a very nice improvement on an already great camera.
P.S. I'd never miss a built-in flash. I used the one on my K100D as a noob a couple of times and am not even sure my K-5 II has one. :)
I trust this will be a great performer and AF won't be missed on a macro lens. The version for Pentax supports automatic metering so it pretty much ticks all the boxes.
I wish, however, it would have been a 200mm f/4 design. That would have provided more stand-off distance. Hopefully, Samyang will offer such a design in the future.
In my experience, the automatic generation of a camera profile from a shot of a Colorchecker does not work optimally.
Perhaps Adobe have optimised this process for the CFA characteristics of Canon cameras, but when using this approach with my Pentax, I got different colours but not all of them were correct.
For anyone needing 100% accurate colours, it would be worth their effort to take a picture of a Colorchecker in every condition and then tweak the image later (through a camera profile or in post) so that the colours are reproduced faithfully.
For everyone else, I'd say it is much more fruitful to tweak the colours in post to your liking and where you start from isn't terribly important.
Thanks a lot for this very interesting inside view on a factory producing some of the most exciting DSLR lenses.
I have number of Sigma lenses that are not just excellent performers but are also extremely affordable.
I hope Pentax's FF camera will create some new momentum for their camera sales so that Sigma will consider producing more of their lens models in K-mount again.
A Pentax DSLR combined with one of the excellent Sigma lens models provides incredible "value for money" that is not rivalled by any other combination*.
* depends on application areas, of course.
It will be interesting to see how well "internet memory" will work.
Can Triggertrap really expect to continue as a company as if nothing had happened? Will they be able to continue selling products or will they face huge adversity from many disappointed backers recommending potential customers to stay away from Triggertrap products?
Community power can cut both ways, these days...
While kickstarter projects in general cannot be expected to always result in the desired product, I'm surprised to see this particular endeavour fail. After all, this wasn't really exploring uncharted territory in terms of technology. Similar products already exist and it seems that a responsible use of the money should have resulted in a product.
Big kudos to Richard Butler who mentioned the upcoming Pentax FF model at the "Gear Day" feature at CreativeLive!
Thanks, Richard, for supporting diversity, competition, and speaking of Pentax as a manufacturer of "photographer's cameras" with "well-positioned controls".
You made this Pentaxian's day. :)
Hartin: I'd really like a canon/nikon style joystick or direction pad to move the AF point. The last piece missing to have perfect ergonomics. Or at least a touch screen, that's also a great way to select af point.
BTW, the recent Pentax four-way controllers have ridges at their edges that allow two buttons to be pressed simultaneously. This is intended to speed up AF point navigation.
Haven't tried it myself yet, but sounds like a very good idea.
I wouldn't want a joystick or direction pad, personally. I find buttons to provide great precision with little fine control required from the thumb.
@nicolaiecostel: Even Nikon fanboys agree that Nikon never manages to put the ISO button in a useful place, no matter what they try.
Pentax cameras are not universally understood, but most people get that they are a paragon of ergonomics.
A camera should be optimised for taking images and thus have all critical control elements be reachable by the right hand as the left hand should be cradling the lens (and must do it when the lens is heavy).
Any control elements on the left hand side of the back can only be for non-shooting purposes, such as reviewing, etc. While I initially liked a complete column at the LHS for such purposes, I feel that the increased compactness by omitting it is to be preferred and the dominant right hand Pentax approach works very well.
Try to acclimatise to a Pentax layout before commenting. I know it is hard, because when I tried to shoot a Canon, it almost killed me. :)
xmeda: Build-in flash should definitely be implemented.. great for commanding remote flashes and as last option when you have no external flash with you.
You "last option" is what Joe McNally calls "no picture". :)
I'm in favour of omitting a built-in flash. It's only real use would be as a commander but it would not reach far and traditionally Pentax does not even support HSS controlling through the pop-up flash.
Radio-controlled flash triggering is heaps better than optical triggering anyhow, so personally, I'd have no use for a built-in flash whatsoever.
I'd like to see a battery grip with a button layout that exactly matches that of the camera (for the few buttons that are featured on the grip). There cannot be any differences as sadly is the case with the D-BG5 and the K-3.
I'd like to see an APS-C crop mode that still allows me to see the FF portion in the viewfinder (using frame lines for the APS-C part, for instance).
Tethering via USB3 would be great.
I'd also like to see the SR mechanism being used for a "Foveon"-simulator and to work in macro shooting situations (further acceleration sensors would be required to measure translational moves).
Finally, please Pentax, be out there and provide the first support for an apodisation simulator by moving the lens diaphragm during exposure.
P.S.: I'll buy the camera even if it does not have any of the above. With the exception of the first item, the above are my pipe dreams. :)
Class A: Cool, this lens looks like my next buy for the forthcoming Pentax FF.
I'll be using some kind of patience until it will be released in K-mount. :) Seriously, I didn't check the list of supported mounts. However, I am still hopeful that K-mount support will be added after a while.
Cool, this lens looks like my next buy for the forthcoming Pentax FF.
Class A: Fantastic news!
What's will all the haters acting on their foul mood on this great occasion?
Do we Pentaxians comment on Canon releases that their sensors are outdated? Do we comment on Nikon DSLR releases that Nikon is unable to allow one to adjust f-stop, shutter speed, and ISO without taking one's eye off the viewfinder (their ISO button placement is broken, every time)?
Knowing Pentax, this new FF model will be rock-solid, a joy to handle in all weather conditions, and will feature image stabilisation for all lenses (old or new) for a very attractive price.
The IQ will be outstanding, as Pentax have proven with their MF and APS-C models, and will definitely surpass that of the already great APS-C models.
What's not to like?
@Snikt228: If you get me a job at Ricoh, I'll add the disclaimer. :)
Astrotripper: Seeing how their new FA lenses do not have optical stabilization, I think it's safe to bet that the camera will sport an in-body sensor stabilization that Pentax is known for.
Unfortunately for Ricoh, they will not be able to claim first on full-frame sensor stabilization, as Sony beat them to it.
I have to wonder though. What will they show with this camera that will make it more attractive than the competition? Being full-frame doesn't mean much nowadays. Both Nikon and Canon have a whole lineup of such cameras, ranging from entry level toys to professional workhorses. And they'll probably announce new models at CP+, too.
Here's hoping they'll come up with something impressive. And they better be already working on lens lineup as well (judging by the new lens announcements, they started that already).
How about in-body image stabilisation with an optical viewfinder (cannot be had from Sony)?
How about on-demand AA-filtering?
How about best ergonomics, compactness, and weather-sealing for an attractive price?
Knowing Pentax, they will add another goodie, e.g. "super resolution", but even without such an extra feature a Pentax FF will be very attractive.
If Ricoh invests in advertising as well (would be change from Hoya years), this camera could become very successful.
MayaTlab0: Too late. The future is with shorter flange distance mounts, Pentax K's mount is too inflexible to be successfully adapted to various designs. In addition Pentax's FF lenses lineup may have tons of references, but most of them are old and optically challenged. And new APSC lenses, like the 20-40, aren't particularly brilliant, and are suffering from QC issues.
Despite having some excellent points Pentax' APSC DSRLs have never been particularly successful. Now Pentax is going to do the same, but against FF DSLRs competitors. I'm not sure the result is going to be any different.
Late? Yes. Make that "Hell, yes". Too late? No.
This is a necessary step for Pentax to stay relevant in the DSLR segment.
Mirrorless has its advantages (not in the least for manufacturers!) but EVFs are still not good enough and will take a long, long time to compete with OVF when it comes to demanding eyes.
Less discerning people will cause mirrorless to become the choice for the masses, but DSLRs will remain a choice for people that want/need more.
Some of Pentax's FF lenses are nothing to write home about, but some are absolutely special and worth buying into the system for. These top class designs will come to new life on this new FF model.
You have a point about Pentax's past failure to convert the technical brilliance of their DSLRs into mass adoption. However, there is hope that the new Ricoh ownership is going to change this.
One can be pessimistic about Pentax's chances in the FF market, but there really wasn't any choice, if they wanted to stay relevant.