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Why Pentax?

Discussion in 'Pentax Chat' started by JerryNash, Mar 4, 2011.

  1. JerryNash

    JerryNash Well-Known Member

    We all have specific reasons for using a particular camera system.

    Some people have stuck with a particular brand through thick and thin for many, many years - others choose a system due to affordability/ availability. Some choose a camera system because "its the best there is" so they HAVE to have it, whereas some choose because the particular camera/ equipment simply suits their needs.

    For me, Pentax was the obvious choice. Affordable, well built, an abundance of lenses (if including 3rd party manufacturers') and suited my beginner status.

    As a newcomer to photography (i purchased a k200d in 2009), i wanted an entry level camera that was simple to use, built like a tank and offered good picture quality at its price point. Live view was very much in its infancy on DSLRs and wasn't that important to me.

    But more than this, i didn't want to go with the obvious [more expensive] Canon/ Nikon alternatives. Call it nostalgia, call it my British under-dog spirit, but they simply didn't appeal to me, despite being (arguably) better cameras.

    So, to cut a long story short, i just thought i'd ask why others use Pentax instead of (or as well as!) another brand of camera? Would you change to another system given the chance (and finances) or are you happy to be associated with the Pentax brand and passionately defend its cause?


  2. El_Sid

    El_Sid Well-Known Member

    What fascinates me is why one would want to 'passionately defend the cause' of any brand, Pentax or otherwise. Ultimately cameras are just a tool mostly made by large and generally faceless corporations. They would be very unlikely to reciprocate such passionate devotion...

  3. PentaxManiac

    PentaxManiac Well-Known Member

    My first serious camera was a Zenith with the Pentax Screw lens mount. When I grew out of the Zenith and wanted something better (approximately half way through my second 24 exposure roll of film) my immediate inclination was to go for a Spotmatic or an ES as they would take my lenses, or failing that a Mamiya SLR as they too had the 42mm thread. In the event I instead made the great leap forward to the 1970s - in 1990 - and began acquiring K-mount and KA-mount cameras from Pentax, Vivitar and Ricoh. Later still I went autofocus and noted that Pentax, commendably, kept full compatability on their AF mount: uniquely, IMHO, because although Nikonites claim compatability the functionality is limited.

    Of course, the same thing happened with DSLRs, in particular with the K10D (which is where I came in) and later models.

    And now I finally have a Spotmatic: an F in fact, without the pain of stopped-down metering.
  4. Fen

    Fen Well-Known Member

    It's fanboy'ism with whatever brand it is. Shame as it gives whatever marquee the poster is fanboying about a bad impression for anyone out there that was thinking or purchasing said equipment :(

    It's like the thread we had here the other day, which also revolved around Pentax :(

    It used to be Olympus users that had this reaction to their brand, but it seems to be Pentax at the moment *even bigger :( *

    Make me feel sad, and I so love my ME Super.
  5. Done_rundleCams

    Done_rundleCams AP Forum Ambassador to Canada

    It was because the K1000 had a flash holder on it and the flash holder would have cost
    money for the OM-1 : shocked: ...... and the K1000 cost about $30 less :rolleyes: This was
    back in July 1986 and within (about) 6 months .... my world changed and I had my dragon :)

    Been with photography and Pentax (D/SLR's) ever since .... with a few other brand compacts: Konica Hexar and Canon G2 ;)


  6. john_g

    john_g Well-Known Member

    None of my Canon film kit (using the FD lens mount) offered any compatibility with Canon's digital cameras so, for me, the first thing was to think in terms of lenses and accessories that I might want to buy in the future. It was unlikely that I'd be able to afford Nikon or Canon prices so would end up with third-party glass. Once I'd accepted that, it left me with a completely free choice regarding camera body.

    What swung it for me was that, in addition to getting great reviews in the areas that mattered to me, it was the Samsung GX-10 (K10D lookalike) that felt most like a real photographer's tool - it sat 'right' in my hand and had some neat tricks such as front and rear-facing sensors for IR remote releases, a top-plate LCD that no other similarly-priced camera offered, and the useful Sv and TAv modes modes in place of - for me - utterly unwanted scene modes. Even now, after several years, I still find the camera does everything I want.
  7. johnriley1uk

    johnriley1uk Well-Known Member

    With respect, I think you have misunderstood the thread. It wasn't "fanboyism", a somehwwhat derogatory tern IMHO, but a response to a question from Damian Demolder. It would be fair to at least consider the implications of the answers given to the question.
  8. Monobod

    Monobod Phantom of the forum

    I think possibly we are mostly drawn to use one particular brand or another simply as a development from the first camera we happen to buy, or in my case inherit. My Uncle and later on my Father both left me Pentax cameras and a few Pentax lenses, all M42 screw.

    I traded these, except for the SV, for a Pentax ME Super. Eventually, this was traded for a Pentax Z1-p and the 28-105 power zoom lens. I still have this and still use it for slide film.

    I was very happy with the camera and the results it gave, so the K10D was the first Pentax dslr I bought. Again because of the ability to use the lenses that I already had. My association with Pentax has been a long one, but in reality it came about by chance. If my Father had owned a Nikon or a Minolta, my camera now would be totally different.

    As I said elsewhere, I had a flirtation for a while with the Olympus E-500, but I could see the four thirds sensor had a limited future IMHO. The *ist cameras did not appeal, so I returned when the K10D arrived. I must say, the images I took with this camera were and still are very pleasing.

    I now see little prospect of me changing because I have a good selection of Pentax fit lenses, flashguns, extension tubes and the like. I can also see me sticking with the K-5 far, far longer that I did with the K10D, the K20D and the K-7 (Now my backup body). The K-5 does have just about everything I could wish for. Now I can stop worrying about the performance of the kit and concentrate on improving my photography to make the most of an exciting future.
  9. johnriley1uk

    johnriley1uk Well-Known Member

    Fair points David - the most important thing is to get out and make images. These days, with weather resistant cameras and lenses that can be in all weathers as well. That thought may not fill everyone with joy.

    The colours in the rain are magnificent, so it is worth the effort.
  10. Monobod

    Monobod Phantom of the forum

    Yes John, I totally agree with you. It is just me that isn't weather proof. :D

    I find this idea of 'Brand Loyalty' somewhat amusing. I am a founder member and Chairman of a Photographic Club and as the only Pentax user, I get good humoured ribbing sometimes. But is is interesting to hear some of the members talking about this make or that, as if everything else were sub standard and the users sub normal for using them. Probably, of all of the leading makers, there is not a truely 'bad' camera in any of their line up. They are all just different.
  11. spinno

    spinno Well-Known Member

    My Pentax buying always coincided with the launch of a new model...K10D, K100D, ist DL, and back in film days P30n, SFXn, MZ5n so it was a sort of happenstance. The fact that it seemed to be seamlessly compatible helped.
  12. dangie

    dangie Senior Knobhead

    "Brand Loyalty or even Brand Quality" would make sense if you could line up half a dozen or so pictures taken with half a dozen or so cameras and tell which were taken by which. You can't so it's pointless.
  13. dangie

    dangie Senior Knobhead

    So does mine. Trouble is I always seem to be about two models behind...!!
  14. johnriley1uk

    johnriley1uk Well-Known Member

    I don't think that's quite true. Every marque has its own character, and whilst it might be difficult to put the right image with the right marque in a blind test, if you use a few different ones you will see that there are subtle differences. It takes a while to know the style of each, and this is when we start to get to know how to exploit the character of our equipment.

    For example, the Pentax K-5 and Olympus E-5 are quite different beasts and produce quite different images. Both are excellent, but you might prefer one to the other. The new Sony A33 and A55 cameras are different again, and that's despite using a similar or even identical sensor in the A55 to the Pentax K-5.

    Never think the camera has no bearing on the end result, they all need looking at and trying before we can be sure we have found the style that suits.
  15. ojb28

    ojb28 Well-Known Member

    This is an interesting question I have often pondered in relation to my own situation!

    My Dad found an old Pentax ME body in a bin in Regent's Park and wanted to see if it was salvageable. He put it in a bag and nothing happened. Ten years ago when I was 16, I got the photography bug, I remember looking at a Canon film compact for £35 in the Argos catalogue and being wowed by the Canon SLRs - I'd never have a camera like that! Then Dad pulled out the old ME - it appeared to work ok, so we bought a lens for it, an SMC-M 40-80mm f/2.8-4. After one roll of film, the ME showed why it had been thrown away and died. So I bought an ME super body to go with the lens. Then the lens gave up, the aperture became sticky. I decided primes were the way to go so found a SMC-A 28/2.8, SMC-M 50/1.7 and 135/3.5 secondhand in local camera shops. When I was 18 I got an MZ-5n with 28-80 and 80-320mm lenses to add autofocus and zoom to my setup whilst maintaining commonality. I then added a Tokina 19-35mm, my first non-Pentax kit and a great little lens. When the ME super packed up suffering the saem symptoms as the ME had, it wasn't the end of the world, I had the MZ-5n which was fully compatible with the manual lenses.

    My first foray into digital was with the great Finepix F10, super little camera which I needed for my degree in architecture. DSLR's were too expensive and not that much better than the F10 anyway. I read the K10D review in AP with envy, but it was too expensive and I was disappointed about what DP***iew said about jpeg image quality. This was the only point where I flirted with changing brands and looked at the D80 and D200, which I thought was too big and heavy. I finally bought the K10D when I saw the launch price of the K20D, getting an end of line deal for £360. I have not regretted it and now have 8 lenses having added the Superb Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 and 100-300/4 EX to replace the 80-320.

    The K5 is the only camera which has got me thinking of upgrading, but the price prohibits it for now. And the K10 is a lovely camera which produces some lovely images.

    So that's my strange story! Had the ME and 40-80mm packed up at the same time, things could have been very different!
  16. john_g

    john_g Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure whether I'm making a serious point, just being contentious, or simply being facetious but...

    When I was a member of a camera club, you often could look at the photos and tell which members had extensive, and expensive, Nikon or Canon outfits. This was because their pictures were often taken in exotic foreign locations or were obviously taken with specialist lenses. Those of us with other makers' cameras tended to have less fancy glassware, and generally took our pictures within the local area, often with a more creative intent.

    I always put this down to financial constraints - if you can afford several fancy foreign holidays a year, I suspect you're more likely to go with the flow and buy one of what many shops will tell you are the 'top' brands, whereas those who have to watch the purse-strings will tend to do more research to get the camera that best meets their own personal definition of value-for-money.

    Is this too much of a generalisation? I'm not sure - but there certainly was some truth in it.
  17. john_g

    john_g Well-Known Member

    I think differences between cameras (rather than makes) do tend to become more apparent under extreme conditions - using high ISO settings, for example. But under 'normal' conditions, if you used several cameras, shot in RAW and used Photoshop to do the RAW conversion and get the kind of contrast, colour representation etc that suits you, would you still find significant, observable differences? Personally, I doubt it.
  18. Done_rundleCams

    Done_rundleCams AP Forum Ambassador to Canada


  19. Done_rundleCams

    Done_rundleCams AP Forum Ambassador to Canada

    EDIT: I should add, to my tale above, that, initially, I was looking at a Praktica w/ 28,50 and 135 lenses kit for
    about $299 CDN at the local Army & Navy store ...when I phoned a mate
    who was a news photog and asked him for some assistance in purchasing
    a camera. When I mentioned where I was, he immediately asked if I had
    a) bought anything, b) put down a deposit and c) had my hand anywhere near
    my wallet .... to which I answered "no" to all. Then he said: "Tell the fellow
    you have a doctors/dentists appointment in five(5) minutes and you'll drop by
    later .... then go to a particular camera store (2 minutes away) and I'll meet
    you there in fifteen (15) minutes which I did and, by the time, I got to the
    store, the owner asked if I was Jack and was I waiting for Wayne (yep) and
    he had two(2) cameras on the counter -- and the story continues :D


  20. johnriley1uk

    johnriley1uk Well-Known Member

    Well, all I can say is that that is my observation, and I've pretty much tried them all. All I can suggest is you have a go for yourself if you have doubts.

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