I was acquainted with Pentax cameras in Melbourne by an ex-housemate who was really into them. He had a K 10 and a nice selection of Pentax limited edition lenses. I used to take his K10 out and do photowalks with his sublime 50mm / 1.4 and 77/1.7 limited prime lenses. Unfortunately after I returned to Malaysia, I didn't really have the chance to play with other Pentax cameras. But opportunities arise when you least expect it. Recently I had the chance to try out Pentax's first digital medium format camera - the Pentax 645D.
This beast incorporates a 40 MP Kodak CCD sensor which is approximately 1.7 times larger than a 35mm sensor. The Prime II image sensor ensures high speed data processing capabilities for the super high quality images produced by the camera's sensor.
The lens which is attatched to the camera is the Pentax-D 55mm F2.8 SDM AW prime lens which is equivalent to a 43mm lens on a full frame camera. There are numerous used pentax 645D lenses which can be had for bargain prices if you look hard enough on the internet.
Speaking of the camera's menu, I was dumbfounded by its sheer complexity. Perhaps I've been too accustomed to the controls on my Nikon and Olympus cameras.
Another issue for me was the relatively microscopic viewfinder compared the the camera's mass. Because of that it was challenging for me to ascertain if my images were truly sharp, or if I focused at the right area. I was informed there was a viewfinder magnifier to solve the issue.
But this is not the case with the 645D. The higher quality pixels produce plenty of micro detail in the highlights and shadows. Better colour rendition can be observed because there are more gradation of each colour and more shades of grey.