Pentax firsts

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drummercam Senior Member • Posts: 1,182
Pentax firsts
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The other brands, most clearly Canon and Nikon, sell a lot of "album fillers" for the masses -- revenue-generating models like the endless variety of Canon Rebels and Powershots. Pentax hasn't done that nearly as much, but instead makes hit records: K-5, K-3, K-1, some being image quality-dominant, like the clearly-dominant-at-introduction K-5 class, and the K-1, their first full frame body, knocking the ball completely out of the park on the first pitch in both IQ and innovation. Models that some might refer to as album filler, like the K-01 or K-S1, are instead better thought of as innovative design experiments demonstrating the clear heritage of Pentax attempting new firsts, whether in design (K-S1) or new photographic capability. See their unparalleled timeline of "firsts":

  • 1952: The first Japanese SLR (Asahiflex)[1]
  • 1954: The world's first instant return mirror system (Asahiflex II)[1]
  • 1957: The first time a pentaprism has been utilized in the viewfinder of a single lens reflex (SLR) camera (Asahi Pentax)[1]
  • 1964: The world's first through-the-lens (TTL) metering system (Spotmatic)[1]
  • 1966: Asahi is the world's first camera manufacturer to produce one million SLRs (after only in 14 years of manufacturing)[1]
  • 1967: Opening of the first camera museum in Japan owned by a camera manufacturer located at Nishiazabu, Tokyo(Moved to Mashiko plant in 1993)[2]
  • 1971: The world's first SLR camera with a TTL automatic-exposure control. This camera was the Pentax ES[3]
  • 1971: The world's first Super Multi-Coated lenses (Takumar lens series)[4]
  • 1976: The world's first light meter is invented by Pentax (in conjunction with Nippon electronics) and used by many brands afterwards.[5][6]
  • 1976: The smallest and lightest SLR camera (Pentax MX and ME)[4]
  • 1979: The world's first camera to incorporate the concept of push-button shutter speed control. This camera was the Pentax ME Super[4]
  • 1980: The world's first through-the-lens autofocus camera. This camera was the Pentax ME F[4]
  • 1981: The first camera manufacturer to reach the production milestone of 10 million SLR cameras (Asahi Optical)[4]
  • 1984: The world's first multi-mode medium format camera. This camera was the Pentax 645[3]
  • 1987: The first 35mm SLR camera to feature a built-in TTL auto flash (SF-1)[3]
  • 1991: The world's first weather-resistant zoom compact camera is launched. That camera was the "PENTAX ZOOM 90WR"[7]
  • 1995: The world's smallest autofocus SLR camera designed based on the concept of "intuitive operation" is launched. That camera was the PENTAX MZ-5[7]
  • 1997: The world's first autofocus medium format SLR camera. That camera was the Pentax 645N[3]
  • 2008: The world's smallest digital SLR camera equipped with an image sensor equivalent to the APS-C size format is launched. That camera was the PENTAX K-m[7]
  • 2010: The world's first to introduce a digital medium format SLR camera. That camera was the Pentax 645D[3]
  • 2011: The world’s smallest and lightest interchangeable lens camera (ILC) in a body significantly smaller than every other digital ILC body available on the market. That camera was the Pentax Q[3]
  • 2012: The world's first medium format DSLR without IR cut filter especially for research, archival, and law enforcement use. This camera was the 645D IR[8]
  • 2012: The first mirrorless camera to natively support a SLR lens lineup. This camera was the K-01[9]
  • 2014: The world's first to achieve a score above 100 at DxO. The camera was the 645Z with a 101 DxO score[10]
  • 2016: Pentax was the first to introduce a weather resistant and backside illuminated flexible tilt type LCD monitor with their first professional full frame DSLR. This camera was the Pentax K-1.

Dedication to quality imaging and photographic innovation remain in place at Pentax. The KP is another mark-setting camera body given its current price/features ratio, and the HD Pentax-D FA* 50mm F1.4 SDM AW is another mark-setting lens. Even the inexpensive HD Pentax-DA 55-300mm F4.5-6.3 PLM WR RE sets a new mark in IQ in its class while being both robustly built and retractable.

 drummercam's gear list:drummercam's gear list
Leica Q Pentax K-01 Pentax K-30 Pentax K-3 Pentax K-S2 +1 more
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