Why I shoot Pentax

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Why I shoot Pentax

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I've exhibited photographs more in art galleries than have sold my services to people and corporations, making me more of a fine-art photographer... an "artist" more than a "photographer." It doesn't mean I know what I'm doing; it's just what I'm called. My first camera was the Canon AE-1p, which I picked up new in Brooklyn at Smile Camera, I think it was. It was a small warehouse with a small window where I gave the man behind the counter a list of equipment and he produced a stack of boxes.

The AE-1p was a beautiful camera, which Canon discontinued the year in which I bought it. Gee, thanks - after buying several lenses, power winder, and a right angler view finder, the entire line goes obsolete. I sold everything off immediately. Canon introduce a garbage series called the T-Series, 50 thru 90 with increments of 10 before that line went obsolete as well. Canon then introduced EOS and I... did not want to invest money in another possible dead line of cameras so I looked at Nikon.

I had the opportunity to use the 8008, or maybe it was the 2002 - whichever model it was, I was shooting aperture priority in a low light situation and pressed the shutter to hear... nothing. The camera did not fire. I asked, Did I break it? No, the camera had a "film saver" feature which prevented me from "wasting" film on an unexposed shot. To underexpose a shot I needed to switch to all manual mode and remove the "intelligence" from the equation. A camera which does NOT take a photograph in the mode I want when I want it? Next, please. Nikon was immediately off my list.

And, I'm happier for the decision. Nikon disables some metering modes if you don't use a Nikon lens. They prohibit others from providing low cost rechargeable batteries for their cameras. They forbid retailers from advertising their cameras below MSRP i.e. no "sales" ever. Should you purchase your camera used, or even from a popular retailer which is not an authorized Nikon dealer, you risk loosing the ability to repair your camera forever. It is the most hostile camera company of all time.

Those who shoot Nikon say, "I only shoot Nikon for the glass" meaning they prefer the high quality lenses. That's quite a rave, although the camera company sucks they like the lenses. Canon makes great lenses as well.. although they play the same games with service and parts. Their lower priced cameras are stripped of features, such as viewfinder information.

When I was in school I bought a few 35mm cameras for under $100 bucks at the local Service Merchandise outlet. I've owned the Pentax P30T and the ZX-M. The P30T was the answer to, What would a K-1000 look like if it were all electronic? It was a great camera, but not what I would call "collectable." I bought several ZX-M's over the years, which featured a power film advance. I must have shot thousands of frames of B&W thru those cameras. Finally I asked myself, what is the *best* camera Pentax made? It was the pz-1p.

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I had scoffed at the price tag for the Pentax MZ-S, which was well over a $1k for a FILM camera, back in the day. Now I own several of them, in case one breaks because nobody makes film cameras anymore. But that's another story - the war on film photography.

Pentax made five great cameras. The Spotmatic F, which was the only M42 camera which can run the meter off a non-mercury battery. Oh, how I miss mercury batteries which are great for light meters at the expense of killing off the human race with toxic materials. The K-1000 SE, but don't be fooled by the "SE" sticker. The actual SE model was embossed into the metal and sported a split image focusing screen. I prefer the LX, similar to the K-1000 but with a plethora of accessories including a wood handle which came with instructions for you to carve it with a knife to fit your grip perfectly.

Moving onto the autofocus flagship cameras were the PZ-1p and the MZ-S. The PZ sports every exposure mode you can think of, with a few you'd never think of i.e. "hyper" modes. Back to the Nikon, if you're shooting in program mode and you don't have enough light, the camera ignores you and doesn't even let you press the shutter. The PZ gives you two options: 1) Take the shot and underexpose or 2) Nudge the settings, even in manual mode, to properly expose the image before returning to the desired settings. It assists your shot rather than fights with you.

But, my favorite camera of all time is the MZ-S. I've included a photo. Pentax said, OK, let's wipe the slate clean, design a 35mm camera from scratch, forget all about convention and what has been done in the past... what would the camera of the future look like? It's weird, but wonderfully so. Press the green button and you're in program mode. Turn the dial and you're in shutter speed mode. Turn the aperture ring and you're in aperture mode. Turn both and you're in manual mode. Wonderful, sans two problems. Some newer lenses lack an aperture ring and the MZ lacks "hyper" modes. So... it's not quite a replacement for the PZ. And, if I want to shoot with vintage Helios lenses with an M42 adapter, my "go to camera" is still the PZ. The MZ gets... confused.

Why Pentax? When they talk about market share, Pentax usually isn't even mentioned. And you know what - they really don't care. Pentax is the photographer's camera company. Their motto is, "Cameras built for photographers, by photographers." Why did they produce so many "consumer grade" bodies? Because having a cheap film camera does not affect image quality. Are you worried about a $100 camera breaking? Buy five of them. They're designed to hold the film so you can put the money into the lenses.

Yes, you can buy cheap Pentax lenses as well as excellent ones. It depends if you're a professional photographer or if you just want some photos of your kid's birthday party, maybe a few snaps on vacation. Artists are not so much concerned about having the sharpest highest quality lenses. Artists tell a story with photographs, something which can be done as easily with the $80 lens and $100 camera. “The object of art is not to reproduce reality, but to create a reality of the same intensity.” - Alberto Giacometti. i.e. If you want reality, look out the window.

So, why do Pentax cameras get such poor reviews? LOL Money, of course. Why doesn't Pentax have a mirrorless line? Long story short, smart phones killed the DSLR market so Canon fired back with mirrorless cameras to bring people back into the fold. Pentax scoffed, asking, How will a mirrorless camera improve the image? It does not. The image is worse. It may be just a little worse, but it's still worse than a DSLR. Why would a photographer knowingly make their images worse? Pentax doesn't know either. Canon introduced mirrorless cameras to make more money, not to improve images.

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This is why you're being told that mirrorless cameras are the way to go - to make Canon more money. Pentax wants you to have better photographs.

So, why are they rated so poorly in reviews? I don't know this for a fact, but I know it's true. Pentax doesn't advertise much and advertising dollars pay for the reviews. So, they're kinder to Nikon and Canon cameras than Pentax. When Pentax introduced their first full frame digital, the reviewers said, "Pentax is late to the party." We call that, fashionably late. How does being late affect image quality? Or, complaining that some models don't shoot 4k video. I don't even own a 4k TV. Why would I want a DSLR which has so much video resolution? That would just increase the price.

And, the myth that Pentax DSLR's overheat while taking video. No, Pentax cameras do not overheat while taking video. They quietly limit video maximum length to 29:59s because once a DSLR records past 30 minutes, it is considered a video camera and has higher tax laws. So, in the manual they explain it away as needing to cool down... to keep the tax on the camera lower, which means lower prices.

What happens if you buy a Nikon or Canon off Ebay, possibly Amazon or Walmart's website? You can forever loose your ability to repair it. No authorized service center will touch it without a copy of your receipt from an authorized dealer, as per Canon and Nikon. And grey market? Just forget about servicing a grey market camera or lens these days.

What is grey market? Nikon makes cameras in Japan and sells them in the U.S. For our example, the camera retails for $1,000. If it breaks, show your receipt and warranty card and the authorized center repairs it for "free." It's not free. The camera costs $700 and you are paying $300 for the warranty. The first repair is paid for, but you paid it up-front when you purchased the camera. You are fooled into thinking you're getting something for nothing.

What if it doesn't break? Well, then you've just purchased a $700 camera for $1,000. You did not fair well on the deal. Does everyone pay that much for the warranty? NO. If Nikon sells a camera to, I dunno... say Taiwan. It may sell for $725 since they only chip in $25 bucks for the warranty. But, hey! I want to buy my $1,000 camera for $725! Easy. Have it shipped from Taiwan. What if it breaks? Well, you can't expect to have it covered by warranty BUT you don't have to pay the repairs up-front. Pay the repair when it breaks, not up-front, knowing in advance that you are buying without a warranty. This is the grey market - not the black market, which is illegal. Grey is buying a camera which "fell off the truck."

Nikon records the serial numbers and they hate not ripping you off for the warranty. So, they punish you. If you buy a grey camera and it breaks, you will not be able to fix it for any price. Not these days. So, forget about buying used cameras, cameras off ebay, and avoid Amazon and Walmart as well as there might be problems down the road.

What about Pentax? They sell you cameras with warranties. What if you buy a grey market Pentax? You'll be charged for the repair but they WILL fix your camera. Why? Because Pentax takes care of their customers. e.g. I bought the Pentax K-1 full frame camera. A few years later, Pentax introduced the K-1 mark II with better sensitivity. yeabut, I just bought the K-1. Not a problem. Pentax let me ship the camera back to them to upgrade the main processor board for a modest repair fee plus parts. Now I've got the power of the K-1 mark II as an upgrade. That's what keeps me loyal to Pentax.

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Why I shoot film

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Film photography is such a wonderful technology. It is so improbable that we as humans created film photography I would swear it could be alien technology. Digital cameras have yet to reproduce the warm wonderful images of film photography. It's the reason why vinyl records and tube amplifiers are making a huge comeback on amazon.com. It's not because the tech is "better." Analogue cannot be directly compared to digital tech. What I don't understand is why nobody makes film cameras anymore. If someone were to make a new 35mm film camera, I'm sure it would be Pentax.

Let's compare old tech to new tech using something we're all familiar with - boating, or sailing. Roughly 6,000 years ago in 4000 BCE humans discovered sail boats which captured the wind to move on the water. Then, in 1886 two Germans created the first motor boat named Rems. Commercial ships are often powered by engines rather than sail these days, but sails have not become obsolete. Sailing vessels are often beautiful schooners, trimmed with teak and brass or small one person crafts and Catamarans.

The sailing ships have found their way into the leisure market for recreation, never forgotten or abandoned. Motor boats are not "better" sailboats.
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CDs' are not better vinyl records. Digital amplifiers are not better tube amplifiers. And, the point I'm making, digital cameras are not better film cameras.

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Cruising is not sailing. If you want to kick back and play shuffleboard, go on a cruise because you're not likely to find those activities on a sailboat, where you'll likely be put to work! Both are valid forms of recreation. You can go on a cruise. You can go sailing. You can buy a sailboat or a motorboat. But, you cannot purchase a new film camera as of 2020. oh sure, Nikon produced a film camera, the F6, which was their one finger salute to film photography. Despite being a film camera it took an SD card to store metadata. Interesting; go on. BUT, on top of the huge price tag, the SD card was an expensive option on top of the overpriced film camera. I briefly looked into buying one then lost interest. Oh, I wanted to love this camera but where would I get parts and service? Nikon? Good luck with that. I wouldn't dare attempt to purchase one used. It's too expensive, too much computer, and the options should have been standard accessories.

ah, but Ebay is full of used camera equipment. Why would you NEED to still make new film cameras? Because, my friends, it's not just the novelty of creating new models. It's the repair and maintenance - the tune-up's, fixing the light seals, small repairs such as stuck shutters and inoperable meters, broken battery doors, and occasional timing adjustments. It's like buying a used car knowing you could never do an oil change or change the brakes on the car ever again. The analogy would be that if you as much as blow a fuse in your used car you'll have to scrap the whole vehicle with no way to find a replacement fuse or someone to install it.

Digital camera resolution is often compared to film. It's not even close, thanks to the Bayer filter. If you've got a 36mp camera your effective resolution is closer to 4 or worse since a "pixel" can only see shades of grey. They're painted with a filtering gel and it takes a whole lot of them to derive the color of a single pixel of the resulting image. The other pixels are estimated using math. An analogy would be drinking orange juice from concentrate vs fresh squeezed. You remove the water first, ship it, then add the water back later; but, you wind up with less than what you started with. Some can't the difference between "fresh squeezed" color vs. digital color.

Then there's film reciprocity. If you double the amount of light hitting the film it will become twice as dark... to a point. If you go beyond its limit, you may only get 1.8x as bright or lighter, then 1.5x. This has the effect of compressing exposure onto the visible image. Digital camera sensitivity is a straight line with no compression. In bright sun and high contrast they wash out. Film mimics what the eye sees and is more natural to look at. Digital looks artificial, especially in high contrast black and white scenes. B&W digital just looks ugly and unnatural to me, especially knowing that digital cameras start off b&w, create artificial color pixels using math, then remove the color again. Why anyone would would prefer digital b&w is mind blowing.

That's not to say that I don't shoot digital - I do! It's fast, cheap and easy. I can do a lot with digital photography. Only, I don't say it's "better." I can instantly make adjustments to my lighting as I shoot, experiment, try different light modifiers and get the results I want. I know immediately if my digital photos are hitting their mark. Film is lesson of faith and patience, often high stakes. I could go on vacation, shoot 6 rolls of film, return home, then still not know for weeks if I have what I want until the film is processed and scanned.

But, when I shoot outdoors in bright sunlight, digital falls apart. For every 10 images I can get on film I may get 1 decent image of digital. It's also a different mentality. A single 32gig SD card gives me about 1,000 photographs for the same price of a single roll of 36 exposure film. Shooting film slows you down and puts you into a hunting mode. You never "spray and pray" with a film camera.

I compose the shot in my head, look at the light, meter the shot - see if I've got enough DOF and how slow my shutter will be. I mentally develop the print in my head, critique the image - what am I photographing? Does the composition make sense? How interesting is it? Only when I'm convinced that my scene is "film worthy" do I press the shutter half way, watch the numbers appear in the viewfinder, focus, de-focus, re-focus, take one more look at the cropping and the horizon, take a deep breath, then press the shutter completely. I hear the ker-clunk of the mirror slapping down. On the manual camera, I hear the springs twang with the reverberation of the exposed shot. I advance the lever with my thumb, listening to the plastic sounds of the film transport and the crunch of film being compressed on the take-up spool. I give the lever another little nudge to make sure it's solidly sitting on the next frame. It pushes back and release my grip, knowing it will be weeks before I see the results. I'm rarely disappointed.

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Swirling Bokehs

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Once again I return to my camera collection. Some of my electronic manual focus cameras have already begun failing and it's been just a few years. Some I've already repaired, only to have them fail again. The Ricoh XR-M which I purchased in excellent condition has already developed a sticky mirror and I haven't even run a roll of film thru it. I purchased another off Goodwill, which showed up with a hopelessly corroded battery compartment. I combined the two to create one decent XR-M, I think. It's noisy but at least it shoots my vintage lenses.

Back in the old days, before the war, zeiss in East Germany got swallowed by the Soviet Union. The Soviets were attaching "their" lenses to a gawd awful Zenit cameras. Now there are millions of magnificent lenses floating around with roots tracing back to German optics with a universal M42 screw mount. Pentax had abandoned screw mount lenses to add mechanical and electronic coupling between the camera body and lens, which morphed into the now popular "K" mount. True to the Pentax tradition, the company wouldn't want you to toss out your old lenses to buy a new Pentax camera so they made an adapter.

Aside, It's just such a sin to use these vintage lenses on a digital camera. I mean... what's the point? Especially if they're APS-C you're not going to get much of the signature "swirling bokeh" on a Helios lens unless you're shooting full frame. (email me any technical corrections and I'll update my notes).

Back to my two favorite film cameras of all time - the Pentax pz-1p and the MZ-S. I know the Pentax fanboys are going to hate me for saying so, but the pz-1 is just too bulky, delicate, and has a "plastic" feel to it. Granted, it feels wonderful in my hands like a black Nerf ball, but I do not like lugging it around in the woods to shoot landscape. I prefer the totally unique and unprecedented MZ-S. What a machine. It's like someone threw out everything about camera design, erased the blackboard (yes black board), and started over.

The MZ-S has some sexy curves on it with its rounded textured body. There's an absence of a "mode" button. Press the green button and you're ready to shoot. Turn the dial and you're shooting shutter speed priority. Or, turn the aperture dial on the lens for aperture priority. Just make the adjustment and the camera follows your movements.

Well, until Pentax began removing the damn aperture ring off their lenses! omg. My first "limited" lens didn't have an aperture ring so I can't shoot it on my favorite camera. It will work on the pz-1, which simply thinks for you. Attach an M42 adapter and it just "knows" what to do. But, what of the others?

I figured I could shoot a vintage lens on the Spotmatic. After all, it's the same mount. but, I'm not sure if the meter is correct. I have to meter "stopped down." Now that I'm thinking this over again, I'll have to drag out my Spotmatic again to see if the metering is correct. I had suspected that the MZ-S also had issues since it MUST have lenses with an aperture ring. It can't read the vintage lenses and there's no "automatic" stop down pin on them.

As it turns out, I tried using the MZ-S with the M42 adapter and *presto* it works just fine. The metering was within 1/4 stop of the pz, only because the pz displays the nearest stop while the MZ-S uses fractional stops. Great news! Now I don't need to lug around the pz thru the wood to shoot vintage lenses. I love my MZ-S. And, in case you're wondering who has been snatching up MZ-S cameras off ebay - that would be me. I snagged two still new in the box after sitting on a shelf for 20 years in a warehouse in Japan. The others are being used... next week for sure.

I went down to the bank with a pair of MZ-S cameras still in the box and asked if they would fit into a safe deposit box. I'm on a waiting list. Maybe I got the idea from Henry Bemis reading books in his bank vault. The bankers were looking at me like I lost my mind. No, I'm one of the few sane ones left on the planet trying to preserve film photography and I want to be shooting autofocus film cameras until the day I die. I don't want my only working film camera to be the damn K-1000.

Preparing for my next photo shoot, I've got one MZ-S half exposed Kodak Portra 160 with a 49mm enhancement filter. The other camera is now loaded with Extar 100 so I can shoot my Helios wide open with vintage colors on a vintage lens. But... what about b&w? I do have a roll of Tri-X. oh, ok, I'll bring three cameras with me, just short of Dennis Hopper's hippie photo-journalist portrayal in Apocalypse Now. Don't you dare suggest that one digital camera with some Photoshop magic can do what an army of film cameras can do.

I loaded the K-1000 SE with a roll of Tri-X. omg. Now I see the appeal of a camera which I haven't used in 40 years. After I got the g'damn thing loaded after many attempts.... "magic needles." I used to hate magic needles Pentax cameras until I tried to load a K-1000! It's been way too long. I practiced on a dummy roll until I got the hang of it. The advance lever seems so stiff. It doesn't have that smooth advance like other classic cameras. It seems to struggle. Maybe after I put a few rolls thru it after its CLA it will loosen up a bit more.

I digress. After I got the K-1000 loaded, twenty minutes later, closed the back against its new tight fitting light seals, looked thru the viewfinder and pressed gently on the shutter, I felt the ker-klunk of the mechanical shutter slam down, sending little vibrations thru my fingers. The springs reverberated with a twang. The only indication in the viewfinder was a single needle. Keep it in the middle and you're more or less good to go.

It hit me... such simplicity. No "modes" or variable ISO or white balance or multisegmented matrix metering. None of the menu options for raw vs jpeg and color saturation profile. Just a single needle. What grace and elegance. It was so beautiful. I just started thru the viewfinder for a while, struggling to find anything else to look at other than the image but there wasn't anything else. Set your ISO, your aperture, and your speed while a single needle keeps you honest. Press the button and you'll probably get something on film which you'll be able to use, but you won't know for at least a week.

The faith in the technology, faith that the film is fresh and responsive. You press the shutter and put the shot out of your mind until days later when then lab returns your scans... unless I'm really not feeling too lazy to mix up a gallon of D76 and of of Dektol. It's the peace and quiet of the camera after I fire the shutter, after the springs stop reverberating. That's photography.

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The joys of manual

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Ah, the joys of buying vintage cameras. I just snagged a beautiful Pentax MX off Ebay in near mint condition. This in itself is very rare as this camera is very old.
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I digress. I had taken some landscape photos with my Pentax K-1000 SE earlier this year and just loved the experience. No buttons, no menus, no color balanced saturated shifted compensated computer generated raw files. Just the reverberation of a ker-klunk of the massive mechanical shutter imparts a latent images onto my roll of Kodak Tri-X. I don't care what the fanboys say - I love my K-1000 SE... sans the film loading. What were they thinking? It takes three hands to load film into a K-1000.

I had been collecting a few of the fanboy fav's, like the ME Super and ME Super Program. Honestly I'm not loving the vintage electronics. The displays are difficult to read and makes the cameras vulnerable to electronic failure. It also makes them depend entirely on a small watch battery. I used to despise the "magic needles" style of film loading until I returned to the K-1000 which was much worse.

So, back to looking at mechanical cameras. I purchased an MX off Ebay earlier this year in near mint condition. I swear this camera looks new with new seals. I just had to blow out a bit of dust and foam bits, likely knocked loose during shipping. But... ugg, the viewfinder was a mess.
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Not a huge deal but every time I held the camera to my eye I was greeted with some ugly black splotches. It looked like a crack but the seller told me it was likely some de-silvering of the mirror. yea, I've got some old wall mirrors at home with a similar issue. The seller sent me a used MX pentaprism in better condition (kudos!) although I'm not talented enough to swap it out myself. Off to Eric, the last Pentax repairman in the country. Eric just wrote... well, he's a man of few words and just sent an invoice so I can be assured that the repair is underway to restore the MX to pristine condition.

I wish had more MX bodies but finding one which isn't all ding'd and dented is a chore. I've turned into an avid camera collector after the major camera companies declared war on film.

Speaking of, Canon and Sony have struck a blow to DSLR's.

The death of DSLR

I'm shaking my head. Bad enough the mega conglomerates have declared war on film but they're doubling down and getting rid of the mirror. Removing the mirror also removes the optical viewfinder to replace it with a small electronic screen. In addition to subjecting digital images to further distortion by doing this, they are touting smaller lenses and camera bodies can cover the same focal lengths at a fraction of the size.

Miniaturization of digital components is a red herring since reducing the size of a lens will ALWAYS reduce its ability to gather and resolve light. Smaller lenses are the selling point of mirrorless systems. True... nobody likes to carry heavy camera equipment but it's the price of quality. Well, since digital images are so sucky to begin with I'm sure the Canon fanboys won't notice the drop in quality.

Pentax, who introduced the SLR to Japan, is laughing. Why intentionally degrade the quality of a photograph?... if you can call it photography anymore. I consider digital imaging more like CGI (Computer Generated Imagery). A 36megapixel camera only has 4mp of resolution after you get past the Bayer Filter. The other 32mp of the image is interpolated (made up) by a computer. Ever wonder why digital images are so crisp and clean? it's because it's not real. You're looking at CGI, not photography.

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The Last Pentax Repairman

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The novice can not relate to the end of film camera production. They see thousands to millions of used film cameras for sale and wonder what issues we're having keeping film photography alive? With the average age of a film camera being 30 years, these delicate instruments need occasional servicing and parts, just as your car does. Without a factory production line to keep spare parts in stock, something as simple as a cracked battery cover could end the useful life of a wonderful instrument.

Other annoyances which can cause a camera to malfunction is a tiny piece of rubber becoming sticky or a plastic gear stripping. In the case of my near mint model MX mechanical film camera it was the mirror loosing its silvering. If you have an old mirror which develops dark spots, especially in places you may have touched with your hands, it's an issue with mirrors in general. The seller on Ebay who sold me this beautiful MX with dark spots made good and sent me a replacement mirror, some assembly required.

Of course, any excuse to send it to Eric is well-rewarded. He is held in high regard. When you speak to fellow Pentax owners and speak his name, we take a moment to lower our eyes out of admiration for the master repair technician who has been restoring our film cameras, a man who is known by his first name. I sent Eric the MX and replacement mirror expecting a simple swap for this camera in this condition.

The camera just came back. Eric said that not only was the mirror bad, but he found fault with the replacement part I had sent him. He used a mirror from his own stock of spare parts. He added that someone else has been "in here" and had broken one of the springs - also repaired. Then he went thru all the metering and shutter speeds to make sure it was properly adjusted.

This is why we take pause when his name is spoken, someone whom I've never met who has made such a significant impact on my life - Eric, the last great Pentax repair technician in the United States.

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an ah-ha moment

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Check out this graph of squiggly lines
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This explains the bad behavior of Canon and Nikon. They're being overtaken by Sony and Fujifilm. Canon assumes this graph demonstrates that consumers prefer mirrorless cameras over DSLR's. I don't see that. What I see is is that consumers are fed up with the over-priced, over-hyped expensive photography equipment combined with their hostility towards consumers who dare not to pay full price. e.g. If you ever purchase a Canon camera on ebay, amazon, walmart, or dare to purchase a used camera you are likely to be hung out to dry when you come in for repairs or adjustments. Much of this is our own fault in the U.S. We allow this predatory behavior from large corporations (esp. banks).

The ah-ha moment came from reading the forums from the lemmings who are loving the mirrorless revolution. Why do you love mirrorless? Answer - thin and lightweight, silent operation, extreme frame rates, electronic viewfinder, fast autofocus, 8k video capture... aside, none of this adds to image quality. The description is a camcorder. Canon is selling you an expensive camcorder, re-branding it as a "mirrorless camera," and the fanboys think this is a revolutionary new idea..

I've got news for you. I've had a "photo" button on my camcorder for many years. I don't use it to take pictures very often. Why? Because a single lens reflex camera does a better job. (shakes head).

but, wait! There's more!

The favorite digital camera makers in Japan according to ITmedia:
  1. Pentax/Ricoh: 24.1%
  2. Nikon: 20.3%
  3. Canon: 13.5%
  4. Sony: 12.5%
  5. Olympus: 11.1%
Read more: https://pentaxrumors.com/2021/05/14/fav ... z7IvCaqpGu

Finally I see some sanity. The people of Japan, the most influential country of camera tech, like Pentax over Canon by nearly 2:1. The design of Pentax digital cameras are superior to both Canon and Nikon while remaining affordable and backed by amazing customer service. Does Pentax have the highest number of autofocus points? No. Fastest frame capture rate? No. The ability to change the focus simply by moving your eye? No. But, do any of those features improve picture quality? Again, no.

I suppose at the end of the day, the answer to the question, "What is the best camera?" The answer is, "Whichever camera makes you look forward to getting out in the world and using that camera to create images."

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