Can Pentax be used professionally?

Started Aug 13, 2014 | Discussions thread
Pete Regular Member • Posts: 276
Re: Can Pentax be used professionally?
3

The short answer to the question is, "Of course." Just be smart.

I use Pentax gear -- and have for decades -- in semi-pro and pro work. I've shot hundreds of weddings, photojournalism stories, photo galleries and so forth. Like many, I suppose, I was with Pentax in K1000 days, and gradually morphed to where I am now. The compatibility of stuff allowed me to do so a little at a time, which was often a big deal; changing to Nikon or Canon would have necessitated new lenses, flashes, etc. all at once, so this way, I made the move gradually.

Much like Jeff says, it's only smart to have backup equipment. I have three bodies, two flashes and an assortment of lenses, a few of which overlap coverage in critical areas. Thus, if one item were to go down, I would be able to perform my primary role at an event.

OK, so if my 10-17 fisheye jammed, that lens would be out the picture, pun intended, but I could live without it at most any event. If my 16-50 died, I'd head for my 28-70. NBD.

Truthfully, in all the years of owning Pentax, I have only had to deal with their service twice. The equipment, on the whole, has been incredibly reliable for me.

Once, about 8 years ago, I sent a lens and a pocket camera into them. That's when service was in Denver. They handled it flawlessly, with quick turnaround and good customer service. A friend used them in those days too, once for a stuck 50mm lens and once for a problem with an old film PZ-1P. The lens was repaired for free; the PZ1-P for a nominal charge, but they went through it with a fine-toothed comb. Like new when it was returned.

More recently, I had the dreaded SDM failure on my 16-50, and I had damaged my 540 flash when I turned around into a support beam I had not seen. Both were repaired by CRIS, and neither was under warranty. The work was fine; I've had no problems. But service took a while -- they blamed parts for the flash as the culprit (and, it did need a few things I had broken off). I wasn't thrilled about the time -- it was probably 6 weeks total. That's when I bought a second flash for backup and relied on my 28-70.

If I were a full-time pro setting up a new system, of course I would evaluate Canon and Nikon, depending on what I were shooting most of the time. For some, in some cases, those are the better options.

But I wouldn't rule Pentax out. The equipment is solid, compact and has done me well for many, many years.

Like many here, I hope Pentax improves its service. With the K3 and now 645Z, it's time. The 645Z is a heck of a camera, but only pros will buy it. And they will demand pro-level attention.

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