More news for the photo set. Well, the proportion who care about DSLRs, prime lenses, and so on. OK, really only the sub-sub-subculture that follows the products from Pentax. With a few introductory remarks as to why you might be interested if you tend to photogeekery. Everyone else move right along.
On Pentax · Pentax’s market share lags far, far, behind the CaNikon duopoly. They were late to the DSLR market and have never had more than a couple of models on sale. They don’t have the most megapixels or frames/second or the biggest telephotos.
Having said that, the Pentaxes, like every DSLR you can buy, take great pictures. And the company has a reputation for being a little eccentric in their product strategies, verging on the frankly weird.
Plus, the cameras have outstanding ergonomics; probably a little ahead of CaNikon.
Plus, and here we’re into otaku territory, the Pentax lens mount hasn’t changed in fifty years or so. Which means there’s this astoundingly wide array of old and new lenses you can fool around with.
By the way, all the photos in the recent Howe Sound Day were shot with either the 40mm or 21mm prime. There’s something really satisfying about pointing a classic 21mm wide-angle at a bunch of mountains.
As for myself, my Dad and my wife were both into Pentax before I got serious about cameras; so I had little choice in the matter. But no regrets, my camera makes me happy.
New Stuff · Back to our story. Pentax just announced some new cameras and lenses.
They look pretty interesting... what made my little heart go pitter-pat were the 100% crops of high-ISO shots with the K20D, the last four in the PopPhoto Slideshow. More samples and sample-pointers chez Mike Johnston. And by the way, when you’ve visiting The Online Photographer, always read the comments for extra wit & wisdom.
I suspect one of these is in my future. The K200D is smaller and lighter and that’s very important, but then I look at those high-ISO K20D crops and go mmmmm... it’s only a little bigger. On the other hand, having too many pixels these days is grounds for suspicion; Has Moore’s law progressed far enough in four years that you can squeeze 14.6MP into the space where my *ist-D has six, without paying a price for overcrowding?
It’s striking that the K20D represents the combination of Korean brute-force silicon wrangling (Samsung’s new CMOS sensor) with Japanese design sensibilities and aesthetics. Which is kind of a new thing in the world.
You know, if you want to get into SLR photography and be a little different, you might want to snap up a K100D or K10D (cheap!) while they’re still available, or wait for the 200. On the other hand, if you get the usual Nikon or Canon just like everyone else, you’ll be perfectly happy too.
Online Culture · In the course of my meanderings so far, the only Pentax-specific property I’d found was RiceHigh’s Pentax Blog, but it’s weird. You’d think that a blog dedicated to a certain line of products would be written by someone who, you know, likes those products. But RiceHigh does nothing but complain about how awful they are and how everything’s wrong with them. Odd.
Just recently I stumbled across PDML, the Pentax-Discuss Mailing List, and it’s a treat. Maybe a little bit higher-volume than strictly necessary, but erudite, witty, and frequently ribald. With lotsa cool pix. They call that other guy “RiceWhine”. I like it! The Internet’s killer app remains, as always, other people.