25 thoughts on “Test 1: Pentax 645D, Pentax 75mm F/2.8 (FA).

  1. Exciting! PENTAX 645D…. Should be very different then a RF.
    Enjoy the excitement of new gear ;-). I’m looking forward in the creativity it will bring.

  2. Heh heh…so you finally broke down!! Did I not tell you that you had medium format in your future?? And here I thought you were getting all frugal. Still sad that you ditched the Noct, but this should definitely be interesting…



    1. Funny enough, I ended up being frugal. The 645D and lenses were all purchased used – funded entirely by the Noctilux with cash to spare. Incredible really. Still, this camera is the antithesis of everything Leica, so I’m in deep water. I have Ashwin Rao to thank for this… There’s an image he posted on Steve Huff’s site a while back that I couldn’t get out of my mind. I was hooked.

        1. Yes Vincent, that was a nice shot, as were all the landscape shots.

          What caught my eye, being a portrait shooter, was an image that most people would have overlooked, or at least placed less emphasis on:

          The sense of “being there” in this image is what appealed to me… something I believe can be attributed to the larger sensor.


          1. Interesting photo…very curious to see if it is the sensor that brings out that sense of “being there” or Ashwin in this case composed this photo in just the right place to bring that feel about. I see where you’re going!

          2. I see what you mean Peter! Shooting with this format is problably a whole other experience all together. I hope to explore this kind of photography someday…..

  3. Mon Cher Peter,

    The medium format is the next step … I should say the obligatory passage!
    I can not wait to see one of your portraits with the 645AFD!
    I understand that Pentax is something! Rendering should still get that little bit more … Especially for prints! I think you did a very good choice … Highly complementary with the system M9 … I guess.

    Otherwise, knowing that you keep your 50 Lux, apart from a very special signing, the Noctilux is not going to be missing …

    Congratulations on your new acquisition … Waiting to discover new images of our magician with the 645D, I wish you all good things.

    Your friend Hugues.

    1. Thank you dear Hugues.

      I don’t anticipate carrying this camera around often, based on its size and weight, but it will be perfect for formal portraiture (both personal and client-based work). If I was a landscape shooter, I wouldn’t look elsewhere at this price point: the image quality is jaw-dropping.

      I hope I can do it justice.

  4. Hi Peter

    Another interesting and exciting move, I’d like to think I saw the same in the images Ashwin presented on Steve Huff’s site. Similarly I found them difficult to forget but at the time I had little choice as my mind was set on the MM.

    When my camera and lens rationalization process kicks in next year I may well end up in a similar place. So as ever I watch with great interest.

    As an aside and coincidentally I bought a Contax 645 with Zeiss Planar T 80/2 last week for some projects I have in mind. I’ll pitch this against my Hassy 500c for some MF film fun…:-)

    All the best, Jason.

    1. Yeah very interesting move Peter.

      Jason I’ve just purchased a second hand Mamiya 645 Pro with 80/2 lens!

      One of my 2013 goals was to shoot more film and this is the way I intend to do it! Get some experience with MF and film. Can’t wait to pick it up.

      Really looking forward to your photos with this Peter. I read a review on this camera not so long ago and Luminous Landscapes were very complementary. Apart from output also about ergonomics as far a MF camera is concerned, which no doubt is important when enjoying the Leica RF ergonomics.

      1. Jason and Andrew,

        If I was half the photographer I’d like to be, I’d buy a medium format film camera (like you gents) and be done with it.

        I look forward to seeing your images.

        Jason, the Monochrom is far more practical, and I’ve been tempted, so I understand your chosen path completely.

        Andrew, the ergonomics of the 645D are without reproach… this camera is VERY well thought out. In a weird way, despite the praise this camera gets in reviews, I sort of think of it as an underdog… sort of how I thought of Leica back when they released the M8 ;).

  5. That sounds great Peter! Congratulations on your new arsenal! Interesting that it’s a completely different system than Leica M, yet I’m plenty sure do you’ll get amazing pictures. Looking forward to your new posts!

    1. Hey Mark, if it’s any consolation to you, the 645D sensor size fits somewhere in between 35mm and “true” medium format; coupled to the fact that it’s digital, well… I’m just a poser.

    2. Mark, until my $300 second hand MF film camera arrives…I have an OMD. The smallest sensor in the game!!

      Enjoy the photos first and the “gear” second.

  6. Don’t do it!! Medium format is like a cheap drug – one shot and you’re hooked. Just wait and see how bad it gets when you get back that first roll of Fuji 50 shot from a Hasselblad 80 or 150 T*. Black & white is even worse. The base density of the MF negatives is a fraction of 35mm. You’ll see stuff in shadows you didn’t even know existed.
    You’ve been warned!

  7. Wow! Congrats with this next step. To me it’s a surprise that you moved to this direction and I am excited to see how it will shine in your hands:-)!! In theory it should be better than FF due to the size of the sensor, but I love to hear from you if this is really the case. Can’t wait to see more creative results…yeah!

    1. I think I surprised myself because I swore off large cameras a while ago. This thing is not only the largest camera I’ve ever owned, it’s also the slowest. But, the larger sensor – for me – is the main attraction.

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