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Old Aug 5, 2008, 6:39 PM   #1
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I'm sure this kind of thread has been talked about time and again, but I didn't see anything related to this down the list, so thought I'd inquire. One of the other camera forums was recently talking about a link Ricehigh (not seen him in a while here since he was chased out with torches and pitchforks) had posted about Pentax planning to develop a FF DSLR. The information seemed to be legit, but lacking in any detail.

Myself, I tend to salivate at the prospect of full frame. I would love to have a wider crop, and depending on the pixel density, some potential for improved ISO quality. Given that we've seen 6 then 10 then 14 MP all on the same sensor size, I'm not seeing what the cost barrier would be to simply enlarge the sensor and maintain the same pixel density.

Plus, I've meticulously only spent money on FA lenses in the hopes that they would be future proof. Resisting the DA 16-50 has been hard. Just as another thought, I've always been a little underwhelmed at the DA limiteds. Sure they're cute, small, and take very nice pictures, but their being the presumed replacement for the FA limiteds, yet slower, has always puzzled me. I would love to have a FF sdm limited with f1.8 or lower capability....
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Old Aug 5, 2008, 8:38 PM   #2
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I think a Pentax FF is coming but I don't necessarily think it will be a replacement for the current 1.5x sensor cameras. Like you, FF potential has been a factor in my lens buying but I have not excluded the APS-C sized lenses either. From what I see of the market Pentax and Sony are in a knife fight for third place, with Sony bringing out a FF, I would expect Pentax to follow at some point.

The big cost to FF sensors is a reduced die yield for the bigger sensors. Looking at the pricing for FF cameras, I don't see one in my future any time soon. This is all pure speculation on my part too.

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Old Aug 5, 2008, 9:25 PM   #3
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I used to pine for a FF DSLR. But, somehow, it just doesn't seem that important to me anymore. Perhaps it's understandable - I just bought a K200D and two very expensive lenses that won't work on a FF camera (the 16-50 and 50-135 f/2.8 lenses).

But I don't think it's just that. FF wasn't that important to me when I was shopping for my current Pentax outfit. For me, it's a matter of cost and convenience. I don't think it's necessary to spend more than $1000-$1200 for any DSLR - even if you're pretty serious about photography. And you can spend a lot less than that and still get great results.

My original Minolta SRT-200 35mm film SLR from 1975 cost less than $200 at the time. Even if you corrected for inflation, that would still be an inexpensive camera today. But FF DSLRs are a lot more expensive than that. Of course, one can add a lot of expense to any SLR with nice lenses. But I think you get my point. When I look at something like the Canon 5D, I say to myself "Good for a pro, but too big, too heavy and not much fun for me."

It would be one thing if the 1.5 crop cameras didn't produce great results. But they do. And as long as the camera makers continue to produce these cameras - and lenses for them - I'll be happy. And, given the recent product introductions, I gather this will be the case.
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Old Aug 5, 2008, 10:25 PM   #4
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I'll definitely be interested to see what gets put forth. I've just been seeing that the FF options these days are much less expensive than years before and that the megapixels keep going up. To me, it's a marketing inevitability that FF will become available as ccd/cmos technology continues to improve. As the price point becomes more accessible, people who didn't consider FF will see it as a possibility. Myself, I paid around $550 for my K10D with a rebate, and it was a glorious deal. I can' really justify spending more than that on a body, so when FF gets near that, I"ll consider it. I think it will get there though in time. Also - and I'm not an EE - but I don't see the requirement that an FF camera be big and bulky. Obviously, the sensor will be a little larger, and the shake reduction would logically have some impact, but I've seen the size to be more of a styling or weather sealing trait than for shear electronics. After all, the DS and K10D have the same size sensor, yet one is a bit larger than the other. Perhaps also if Pentax plays their cards right, controlling the size of their FF camera to something handy and non-obscene could be a major feature.
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Old Aug 5, 2008, 10:37 PM   #5
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Just remember folks, FF means you will have to buy some seriously high end glass for the image to be sharp all the way to the edges, or to put it another way. I have some FF lenses that were very soft at the edges with film, but are extremely sharp all the way to the edge with the APSC sensor.

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Old Aug 6, 2008, 7:53 AM   #6
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Had a "Pro" do my daughter's wedding a few years ago-she used a Canon FF

EOS-1D Mark II. Used all "L" lenses-very impressive outfit. I used my DS with the DA 40 2.8-not a whole lot of difference. It has also been said in this forum that unless you use the new *DA lenses on the K20 you will not see a drastic improvement over the K10d. Appears to be another chase for the "silver bullet"
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Old Aug 6, 2008, 9:47 AM   #7
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A full frame is something that will definitely interest some but it is not going to be cheap. As ennacac said, to have a complete system one will need full-frame lenses to cover a wide focal length range and of good quality.

OTOH, if they make the body smart to recognize the DA lenses and use them in a ASP-C mode (or any others for that matter) it may be a good mixed ASP-C/FF camera.
This way the photogs could slowly move into the FF lenses line-up. That will also buy time for Pentax to come out with new updated FF glass.

My 2 cents.
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Old Aug 6, 2008, 10:07 AM   #8
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DigitalAddict wrote:
Quote:
A full frame is something that will definitely interest some but it is not going to be cheap. As ennacac said, to have a complete system one will need full-frame lenses to cover a wide focal length range and of good quality.

OTOH, if they make the body smart to recognize the DA lenses and use them in a ASP-C mode (or any others for that matter) it may be a good mixed ASP-C/FF camera.
This way the photogs could slowly move into the FF lenses line-up. That will also buy time for Pentax to come out with new updated FF glass.

My 2 cents.
It is possible for the camera to be able to use both APSC and FF lenses. Nikon does it.
The only caveat. A 12 MP FF using a APSC lens will use only 5MP on a camera.

Those with older and/or expensive FF glass and deeper pockets will benefit using FF cameras (FF camera prices are outrageous IMHO). For that kind of coin I would rather go with a medium format camera instead. I find the crop cameras to do a wonderful, fantastic, superb job.
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Old Aug 6, 2008, 2:18 PM   #9
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I'll probably stay with the smaller sensor cameras. First, they are cheaper and as a hobbyist with a limited budget, I wouldn't be able to afford it. Second, even if they were affordable I'd probably not be tempted. I have a friend who's a pro sports shooter and he showed me his ff Canon. It's a beautiful camera that I can barely hold steady. And my fingers aren't long enough to reach the focus ring over the grip. Definitely NOT the camera for me!
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Old Aug 6, 2008, 2:21 PM   #10
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I have to agree with pwithem that if the cost of a FF camera came down to $500-$600, I would have to be interested. But I'm not holding my breath. Conversely, improved sensors may also make the differences between FFs and 1.5-crop cameras less important than ever.

And speaking of improved sensors... has anyone considered whether SLRs will even be necessary in another decade if sensor technology continues to improve at a good clip? Most of us don't like EVFs. But some offer a 100 percent view of what's going into the lens. What if all EVFs offered that plus outstanding resolution, accurate color and mind-bending refresh rates? The Olympus/Panasonic Micro Fouth-Thirds format could be just the beginning.

Think about it: The SLR replaced the rangefinder in the 20th century. Could high-end electronics and image technology render SLRs obsolete in the 21st century?







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