Pentax Focuses on More Art, Less Tech Ahead of Camera Launch | Digital Trends

    Pentax has gone lengthy sufficient between digicam bulletins that “Do they still make Pentax cameras?” is an precise Google search suggestion. But as Pentax prepares to announce the event of a brand new flagship crop-sensor DSLR subsequent week, the corporate shared an evolving model philosophy and printed an interview with President Shinobu Takahashi discussing the way forward for the corporate. And it’s a future that’s unsurprisingly however dangerously centered on the “art” of SLR images, moderately than mirrorless.
    Throughout the video and written proclamation, Pentax emphasizes the expertise and artwork of working with an SLR, going so far as subtly implying that mirrorless cameras are additional faraway from the inventive course of of making {a photograph}. When you’re employed with an SLR, the video says, you “view the image with your eyes and feel it with your heart.”
    Pentax has already stated final yr that the model wasn’t fascinated about becoming a member of the full-frame mirrorless craze. But can a contemporary digicam firm survive with out making the leap to mirrorless, as even massive manufacturers like Canon and Nikon are lastly leaping in head first as a substitute of timidly dipping a toe within the water? Olympus’ announcement of a possible sale of the digicam enterprise — after absolutely supporting mirrorless however refusing to go full-frame — suggests a fraught future for digicam firms that don’t embrace the complete vary of technical prospects.
    Pentax’s plan for survival is to do the other — and focus as a substitute on the expertise of images moderately than superior expertise. “At Pentax, we don’t design SLRs or mirrorless cameras based on which is superior or inferior in terms of technology,” Takahashi says within the interview. “We believe that everything depends on which type of camera the user prefers because of the way it handles or captures a particular subject. We design SLRs that allow the photographer to sense and capture the light coming through the SLR-exclusive pentaprism. We’d like to help them create images using all the elements of their creative imagination.”
    One of the 5 “Principles of Pentax” launched by the corporate says that the corporate will “pursue a level of quality and performance that can’t be measured by numbers alone.” The firm continues to say that numerical values received’t be the one pursuit, however “sensory feedback” will likely be part of the design and improvement. In different phrases, how the digicam feels and the expertise of capturing with the digicam issues, greater than fancy specs. An enormous a part of that’s the optical viewfinder, which Pentax claims is a greater option to see the sunshine within the scene and even work together with the topic.
    “The thing that matters most to Pentax is developing SLR cameras that will provide our users with the ultimate pleasure of photography throughout the process of picture-taking,” Takahashi stated within the interview. That’s not a nasty objective, however is taking {a photograph} with a technically superior digicam any much less enjoyable than taking an image with an SLR?
    The listing of ideas additionally says that Pentax designs new cameras “through sheer devotion.” (Does Pentax have fewer sources than what’s devoted to the 360 cameras made by mother or father firm Ricoh?) And goals to create cameras “that allow for direct communication with the subject” and permit photographers “to enjoy all the processes involved in taking a picture.” The ultimate level is to respect “photographic experiences.”
    If the listing of ideas and interview don’t make the corporate’s focus apparent, a webpage devoted to the model’s redefined philosphy makes it clear: “With an SLR, photography is more like painting a picture than operating a mechanical device.”
    The firm stops simply in need of saying mirrorless images is much less inventive, however they definitely indicate it.
    Daven Mathies/Digital TrendsDon’t get me incorrect — I’m a DSLR photographer that purchased the Nikon D850 after the mirrorless Z 7 got here out. But I didn’t purchase the D850 for the expertise or as a result of capturing with mirrorless feels any much less inventive. I purchased the D850 as a result of the DSLR can nonetheless give attention to a darkish dance ground higher than the Z 7 and I can shoot an all-day wedding ceremony with solely two batteries. 
    Pentax is making no such claims that the SLR is technically higher, solely that SLRs are artistically higher and that optical viewfinders are good. DSLRs really feel completely different than capturing with a mirrorless, sure, however saying that they’re extra inventive is like saying proudly owning a sure sort of paintbrush makes you extra of a painter than the subsequent man. And making an attempt to construct a worthwhile firm off that philosophy is, at greatest, dangerous.
    Granted, if there’s any firm that may make inferior expertise with a fantastic expertise work, it’s Pentax. Pentaxian photographers are identified to be fiercely loyal. While Pentax DSLRs have been first to launch some nice options like weather-sealing, “cutting edge” isn’t one of many first phrases that involves thoughts when considering of the corporate. Shooting with a Pentax already had a unique really feel to it, and whereas dangerous, it’s much less ludicrous than if one of many prime two digicam manufacturers determined to do the identical.
    Pentax is using on the concept DSLRs are the subsequent movie digicam. Despite quite a few claims that movie is useless — simply as many photographers have been saying for years about DSLRs — photographers nonetheless decide up movie cameras solely for that completely different inventive course of. Fewer superior options may help photographers decelerate and put extra thought into every shot. Pentax is saying the identical about DSLRs, regardless of the a lot smaller hole between mirrorless and DSLR than digital and movie.
    The query is, will it’s attainable to maintain a enterprise with the variety of photographers preferring the Pentaxian expertise to the opponents that repeatedly sprout new options and developments at an identical worth level?
    Pentax will supply a glimpse at simply how that new philosophy will manifest in a bodily digicam subsequent week. The firm is planning a broadcast to share the event of a brand new APS-C flagship digicam on July 22 at 7 p.m. Japan customary time, 6 a.m. ET.

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