The next Pentax 645 medium format camera will most likely have a 100MP Sony sensor

Ricoh has signed a deal with Sony for their new 100MP sensor that was already used by PhaseOne for their latest camera. This info is coming from Kenneth Sporsheim, Pentax Ambassador for the Nordic countries:

“It’s more than just a rumour, it was told directly to me from Ricoh. BUT, they also said that this doesn’t mean they have a camera ready for this sensor. They CAN use it if they need/want to do so. But who knows what they are brainstorming at the HQ in Japan.” (source: dpreview, Pentaxforums)

Similar information was also posted on Pentaxone few days ago by a good source who have been right in the past.

Here are some of the specs of the 100MP sensors used by PhaseOne:

We may see the announcement of a new 100MP 645 medium format camera at Photokina later this year (September).

Pentax 645D medium fomat camera-1
In addition to the 645Z ($6,979), Pentax still sells their previous 645D model ($3,373).

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  • Doug Laurent

    That would by far be the BEST thing that could happen, and i would buy it immediately if the price isn’t too crazy!!!

    • Yes and… put the K-1’s focus area (or larger) in there too… the current 645z’s focus area is just too tiny. It’s like an APC focus area on a giant MF-ish sensor. And then make sure there’s an Electronic Font Curtain or something similar to deal with anything longer than 150mm. I don’t really care much about the whole “lack of leaf shutter” issue, or the flash sync speed.

      • Shaepour

        good points indeed …

        personally though, between the 645Z and the good old 645D, i’d still prefer the latter for its image quality since i dig CCD sensors a lot more than the CMOS for still photography!

        i used to yearn for professional APS-C or FF photography cameras doing video and high speed photography and stuff …

        but after using both CCD as well as CMOS cameras for quite a while, i learned my lesson the hard way: i DO NOT really need video and high ISO or even lower power consumption etc on a ‘fast’ CMOS based system when doing MF photography, which is the better format for landscapes, portraits, architecture and so on …

        even in film photography, MF and bigger size cameras were not designed for ‘action’ photography really and if you do want a digital MF camera for that class of jobs, there are some mirrorless options available and they’re doing more than fine enough already …

        i’m guessing Pentax is trying to beat the competition with a mirrorless MF camera now … not a bad move after all … but i wish the 645D was not discontinued! 🙁

  • Piotr Krochmal

    Make it SR! 🙂

    • TO-DOUG

      Okay, I give up… What is SR?

      • Piotr Krochmal

        Sorry for unclear sentence 🙂 SR is Shake Reduction 🙂

        • Aspa

          Or Saint RICOH perhaps?

    • David

      Well Ricoh already interviewed about putting SR 2 years ago for 645Z but they couldn’t. Maybe this time, they could.


    Typo: Heading should be “most likely” and not “most liekly”.
    I AM | Proofreader…


    Great to know. But without a series of leaf-shutter lenses, It still will not suit my use.

    • Originaru

      rumor of a new X-mount iin conjuntion with fuji. Fuji makes MF lenses for hasselblad


        Well, Hassy H1 was under fuji brand in Japan. Wonder why Fuji didn’t make MFs for all these years.

  • Skepticboy

    As a current 645Z owner I really see no need for a 100mp camera. 51mp is pretty damn good now. 100mp? just insane

    • MdB

      Main difference is that it is full frame 645.

      • silmasan


    • silmasan

      Well there’s an article at Alien Skin’s blog titled “The Great-Resolution Hoax”. Sorry no link — it’s partially advertorial of course. But good point nevertheless.

    • teila

      It’s not as much resolution as granny’s view camera collecting dust in the attic, so what part exactly is “insane” about 100mp. 100mp is not huge, people.

  • sperdynamite

    Then we might finally get what we REALLY need, which is a replacement for the 75/2.8. 80/2 would be my vote. But….it’ll probably be 75/2.8 again…

    • teila

      What’s really needed is a leaf shutter version of the 55 f/2.8 and a really fast short telephoto lens like Hasselblad’s 100 f/2.2. Even a 100mm leaf shutter f/2.8 would be a slam dunk… and for goodness sakes Pentax, add stabilization and modern coatings to the darn 120 macro for goodness sakes!

      At nearly $5k, Pentax would’ve done well to add a shutter to the 28-45 as well. Talk about a great value after that!

  • Davo

    Pentax 645 should go mirrorless. Though also make K-mount and 645-mount adapters.

    • silmasan


      Adapters will follow.
      Rollei/Contax/Zeiss/Hasselblad/Mamiya/Phase One/Schneider …

      • Davo

        Yes, but it would be good to have Pentax native adapters built by Pentax. Perhaps even sophisticated ones that has a mirror and PDAF module for the existing lenses optimized for PDAF and not CDAF.

        • silmasan

          Of course, that goes without saying! 🙂

    • sperdynamite

      And abandon all their lenses past and present? While having to make an AF system that doesn’t suck, and whole new line of lenses? No thank you. I’m happy the 645z exists AT ALL. Somebody else can go a MFD mirrorless. Sony, I’m looking at you…

      • silmasan

        Why not a joint Sony-Pentax then…

        And looking at how even Canon USM (and soon Nikon AF-S) lenses can be used with AF on Sony A7 series, there’s no need to abandon their lenses at all.

      • Lee

        They wouldn’t have to do that. Common misconception. There’s no reason they can’t use the same mount and flange distance, just without a big heavy mirror flapping around behind it shaking all your images.

        Yes, usually a big selling point of mirrorless is that the short-flange mounts allow for smaller cameras, but a medium format camera is going to be huge anyway so it probably wouldn’t be worth it.

        A few people like Thom Hogan have talked about the fact that Nikon should get into mirrorless exactly the same way (ie keep the F mount, just ditch the mirror inside it).

        • teila

          Mirror has negligible affect on images. I don’t want to ever have to be restricted to looking at a screen as opposed to a view finder that’s for sure. The mirror isn’t bothering me.

          • Lee

            Sorry, but this is demonstrably false. Mirror slap causes vibrations (moreso the larger the mirror) and those vibrations degrade image quality (at all but the highest shutter speeds, but moreso the longer the shutter speed). That is objectively measurable, and has been objectively measured by Lloyd Chambers and others.

            Hell, even the movement of the *shutter* can cause problems, which is why many high resolution cameras now have Electronic First Curtain Shutter.

            I can’t imagine how you’ve avoided noticing this.

          • teila

            Test have been done ad nauseam with scores noticing the obvious. The bottom line is that there’s a negligible amount of mirror slap that affects most photography on the planet in a practical manner. Measurable, of course, practically relevant is where the rubber meets the road. Just like if you put a clear high quality filter in front of your lens, does it make a difference? Technically yes. Practically most of the time no (I’ve done that test 100 times… I’ll let you do the mirror test- most people won’t be able to tell the difference in most situations and that’s my point).

            When it comes to mirror slap, I’m *more* concerned with the flappy bit banging itself to death and getting jacked up in bodies like the Hasselblad 500 series. Would I lift the mirror on a 503 shooting a granite rock face at 5:30am? Sure. Will I do it on a modern MF body? Rarely. In most slow shutter situations, no.

          • Shaepour

            mirror lock and/or a 3-seconds delayed shutter release (that some Pentax cameras such as the K-5, K-7 etc) do offer is the remedy for the mirror / shutter vibration issues … (many film cameras also do have a mirror lock option btw since ancient times …) such features come in quite handy when using long or even short exposures with the camera mounted on a tripod, which is a MUST for precision photography after all …

            the electronic 1st curtain shutter is good for handheld photography at higher shutter speeds mostly and not needed for long exposure / tripod cases really …

      • Davo

        Not at all.
        Precise adapters won’t be difficult to implement.
        If the new flange-back distance is less than the K-mount, then K-mount adapters can also be implemented.
        I’m not saying make it as thin as the FE or m43 or anything like that. But there’s a lot of depth saving to be made to make medium format more DSLR sized.
        And without the need to miniaturize the camera beyond reducing the depth, you could have decent sized batteries powering large state of the art EVFs.
        I guess you could do it the way Lee mentions. That ‘snoot’ eliminates tolerance issues vs adapters for current lens but you don’t gain the depth saving advantage.
        Since Pentax is the only player in the ‘affordable’ medium format market, I just think they’re leaving opportunities on the table. It’s for them to exploit with no competition.

      • Sator Photo

        Sony sensors and Sony cameras are two separate companies. Saying that because the sensor company makes MFD format sensors, and that therefore the camera company definitely will use them to make an MFD system is like saying that Sony cameras are going to make M4/3 cameras because Sony sensors makes M4/3 sensors.

        Sony cameras have their hands full developing lenses and bodies for two mounts, both for APS-C and full frame formats. They are struggling just with that, with no new FF A mount body for years, the A99II failing to appear, and the much rumoured premium A9 mirrorless series nowhere in sight.

        If I were an A mount user and Sony suddenly came up with a MFD or M4/3 system tomorrow, I would tear my hair out. It would also slow down both A and E mount system development as Sony spreads itself too thinly across too many mounts. Also Sony didn’t inherit any medium format IP or expertise from Minolta.

    • Eliminating the trap door sized mirror flopping around could only improve image quality.

      • Davo

        Precisely. Although some will miss the medium format OVF experience though. Admittedly I’ve only used a Contac 645 but the OVF was better than any DSLR I’ve tried.
        But having said that, without miniaturization and associated power constraints of other mirrorless formats that are trying to hammer home the ‘small advantage’, I wonder how much better an EVF they could build for medium format.

      • teila

        I’ll take the floppy mirror any day over looking at a glowing screen.

    • Tim

      I do really like the view finder and seeing things go sharp or out of focus. No Mirrorless can offer this, and it’s one of the pros for mediium format cameras.

      • Davo

        I agree. A great OVF is a great experience and something that currently can’t be replicated.
        But I guess the operative word is ‘currently’. Without some of the miniaturisation and power constraints of other mirrorless formats I wonder how good an EVF is possible even with today’s tech.

      • Sloan Lindsey

        Hmm, I have the Sonys and the 645z and if they released the 100mp as evf I would liquidate funds to pre-order. Eye level focusing with stopped down focusing and no shutter delay with focus magnification and exposure preview are exactly what I miss from the Sony cameras as compared with the pentax.
        I don’t need a flange reduction, I’d still use pentax lenses, but the usability advantages of mirrorless can’t be discounted if you’ve really jumped into the mirrorless world.
        The new Sony sensor supports an electronic first curtain shutter so all the parts are there.
        Focus shift with the newer pentax lenses is still an issue, this issue is still most easily fixed by focusing at the taking aperture.
        That us the entire reason I would upgrade from the z so I really hope that pentax makes another full time evf camera.
        I’d also love to imagine the view finder focusing on a giant high resolution oled like those developed for the vr systems.
        If they do that they can keep the pentaprism or just use a mirror because they can flip the image digitally. A pentax 645E with no size reduction would find its way into portrait and technical camera applications because you can truly see the focus fall off at the taking aperture. Also it would be a great opportunity to add an ultrawide angle tilt lense. Tilt is so much easier on an evf system because you can use peeking and focus magnification to see how much tilt to use.

        I hope pentax decides to stand out and make the next 645 with an evf and the option to meter and focus stopped down.

    • David

      Why mirrorless? the lenses are still huge. I don’t wanna use mirrorless camera due to small batteries. Medium format camera requires huge battery uses. Also, size won’t be that different. Medium format is for image quality not the size.

      • Davo

        I’m just using FF DSLRs as a benchmark that balances perfectly well with very large lenses.
        We’re not talking mirrorless the size of Sony A7 series.
        I’m suggesting reducing Pentax 645 down to FF DSLR sizes with very large batteries powering very high quality EVFs.

        • David

          Well, 645 format lenses have huge mount compare to 35mm FF. That can not be change. Mirrorless MF camera? There IS mirrorless camera already.
          Flange focal distance is also important for MF camera for the corner sharpness. Furthermore, all current MF cameras are DSLR style. Leica S is quite smaller than any MF cameras like 35mm DSLR. But the important thing is that the size is almost similar to 35mm cameras. They just have another space for digital back and more heavier. RF style mirrorless is possible for MF. And I would like to ask you if you ever used MF camera lenses especially zoom lenses. Pentax DA 28-45mm f4.5 which is for CROP MF camera and have really huge size. When I tried it once, I really surprised about the size and weight of it. If it made for FF, it should be bigger than the current one. Making MF camera to mirrorless camera is meaningless due to the lens size, weight, Flange focal distance, and etc. I already talked about this thing with Phase one, Hasselblad, and Pentax at Photo plus expo but they told me not realistic.

          • Davo

            Yes, MF lenses are large when compared like-for-like with FF counteparts. However in absolute sizes, there are many larger lenses made for FF (with no MF counterparts) that balances perfectly well on FF DSLR bodies. Take the 70-200mm f2.8 for example.
            Of course there are many non-zoom MF lenses that are much smaller.
            My personal experience in MF is with Contax 645 and have never used a MF zoom lens.
            But my argument for mirrorless is to improve handling from their very large sizes today which is largely the legacy of needing adequate depth to clear the MF-sized mirror, not a MF version of the Sony A7. Sony A7 series have grown from mk I to Mk II and still doesn’t handle large lenses as well as FF DSLRs. Currently I feel the best handling cameras with large lens are in the form of FF DSLRs. And it could be quite feasible for a mirrorless MF to approach this depth.
            In your link to the Phase One backs on the ALPA bodies, if that’s what you had in mind when talking about mirrorless MF then I’m afraid we’re just not on the same page.
            In regards to flange back distance, yes that would change and shorten and a new set of lens will need to be designed and produced. I’m not a lens designer but from what I’ve read, very short flange back distance have issues in the corners however very long flange back distances which is required to clear the MF-sized mirror is also not ideal.
            This is about starting with a blank page. For a given medium format sized sensor, what would be the ideal mount size and flange back distance. I’m betting that the Pentax 645 flange back distance is what it is, not because it was ideal but because it was required to clear the mirror. So without the mirror constraint what would be ideal?

          • David

            Mirrorless does not make the lens and body to be smaller and lighter. That’s the common misconception. Did you ever saw Leica SL? It is a mirrorless camera but the lenses are really huge. Pentax FA 28-45mm is bigger and fatter than 70-200. Then what’s the point of having mirrorless camera? It will make the body and lens to be unbalanced. That’s why many photographers still use DSLR for that reason. Also, mirrorless camera consume a lot of battery. Every parts are electronics even the viewfinder. Do you aware that MF camera use a lot of battery power that they require 2 batteries? This is the biggest con for mirrorless cameras that they can’t shoot more than DSLR cameras. Like I said before, Leica S series already achieved what you need: 35mm FF body size. Lenses are still huge but thanks to smaller sensor compare to CROP sensor, they made it smaller. The most important point is that MF camera is for better image quality. Why camera companies have to make mirrorless MF camera for? Professional photographers who use MF camera demand quality not the size. Since the mega pixel is bigger than before, lenses will be more bigger for optical quality. I’m not being optimistic about mirrorless technology. It’s a fact. There are no reasons to make mirrorless MF camera. The purpose of MF camera is way different than any other cameras. If you complain about its size, then it’s really stupid because compare to 35mm cameras such as 5d mark 3 and D810, MF cameras are just little bit bigger. That’s all. Mamiya already made smaller MF camera which is VERY small compare to current MF cameras but it abandoned the digital back system like Pentax did. But now, Hasselblad and Phase one use digital back system for better compatibility and modular systems. If you depend cheaper MF camera, then it has to be totally a new system. Sony and Fujifilm are working on mirrorless MF camera but it will be RF type MF camera like Mamiya 7. But for that case, the battery will be smaller which is quite critical. You see, making mirrorless MF camera is not simple and meaningless work for now. Physically, both body and lens are huge which mirrorless can not solve this issue. Check how big are new Sony G master lenses.

          • Davo

            Its clear we’re not going to see eye to eye on this issue.
            Lens size are growing due to the higher demands of modern sensors. Take the Zeiss Otus range for example. They are not growing because they are designed for mirrorless cameras.
            If you feel a Pentax 645Z body is just a little bit bigger than a 5D3 or D810 then again, I’m afraid we are only completely different pages.
            The Pentax 28m-45mm has more girth but is shorter than most 70-200mm/2.8 and they weigh quite similarly. I do get your point, MF lenses are large but so are many FF DSLR lenses that balances and handles very well on current FF DSLRs.
            My point is current MF bodies are unwieldy large for eye-level shooting. The extra depth works fine for waist level shooting IMO. I feel this can be improved by dropping the mirror.
            The point about the power requirements I’m perfectly aware of. Again, we’re talking larger FF DSLR-like sized cameras that have plenty of room for large batteries.
            Yes, I know MF is about image quality. But that doesn’t mean it needs to be at the expense of everything else, such as handling. I still get the feeling from you response that you think I’m suggesting some tiny A7 like mirrorless MF. I think you need to get rid of that preconceived notion. Mirrorless just means a reduced body depth and a different way of framing. Why that would be mutually exclusive from good image quality I have no idea where you get that idea from.

          • David

            MF bodies ARE having the right size. You are really don’t understand what I’m saying. Especially with digital back system, it won’t be possible. I really don’t understand your point for mirrorless MF camera? Why are you comparing with 35mm FF? MF cameras are much bigger format. Making the body smaller won’t change anything at all. Which part do you even mention to be mirrorless? Viewfinder? body? else? Like I SAID before, mirrorless consume a lot of battery because the sensor always turn on like a live-view. There are no way to solve this issue and this is the biggest concern for mirrorless cameras. If you think that mirrorless camera lens can be smaller, then you are wrong. There are no difference between DSLR and mirrorless lenses. Sony G master lenses have same size with Canon and Nikon lenses. Yes it is designed for MIRRORLESS but still have DSLR lens size. What’s the point having smaller body with big lens? Also MF cameras have almost same grip size with 35mm FF camera. So what’s the point? Leica S already achieved A small MF camera. The digital back made the MF camera to be bigger. That’s all. It already have similar size of 35mm DSLR. The width is just longer than DSLR. I really wanna ask if you REALLY read my comment carefully since you seem to ignore my comment. There are no points to make mirrorless MF camera. Size? check Leica S series.

          • Davo

            I’m not sure you’ve REALLY read my points either. I will admit somewhere in the middle I missed some of your points however your one block of sentences really does make it difficult to read. No doubt some of it is due to limitations of discussing things on disqus but nevertheless it is difficult to read. Not having a go at you but that’s just the case.
            Addressing your points:
            ‘MF bodies are the right size” – purely a subjective opinion. I feel they are far larger than required. I made no mentions of digital backs. I’m referring to sensors integrated with the camera body.
            Why compare to FF DSLR? – because the actual range of lens available in MF, whilst larger than their like-for-like counterparts in FF, the full range falls within sizes of lens available in FF. So it would be useful to use FF DSLR bodies as a guide because they handle very with all the lens available for FF DSLR, many of which are larger than even the largest MF lenses.
            I am arguing changing the body from current MF to sizes approaching current FF bodies WILL make a difference. This is a matter of opinion and you obviously disagree but that’s ok.
            And the only way to do so is to reduce the depth which means to remove the mirror.
            I’m not advocating mirrorless for the sake of mirrorless, I’m saying IMO there are significant handling advantages to be gained however it requires the removal of the mirror. And tech is catching up to the point where this may be feasible. In addition, with the removal of the mirror there may be other advantages to image quality which I haven’t touched on in this conversation yet.
            I don’t understand your question about which part to be mirrorless. Mirrorless to me just means removal of the mirrorbox, hence more design freedom for body depth. However it also means a new mount and at the same time, necessitating an alternative way of framing the photos where EVFs are making significant strides. Maybe not OVF quality yet and I concede that no matter how good the quality, it may never have the feel of an OVF.
            Again with the power consumption issue. I thought I’ve made it quite clear I understand mirrorless needs a constant power supply and hence greater power needs. And I thought this is at least partially countered by the ability to have larger, more powerful batteries when you’re not trying to make miniature cameras like the A7.
            About mirrorless lens vs DSLR lens: there’s some confusion here. I DON’T think mirrorless are necessarily smaller. They are largely the same when there’s a need to cover the same image circle. We both agree that size is growing largely due to increased resolution needs of modern sensors.
            Yes, MF bodies do have a substantial grip and it is necessary for the body and lens size. Similarly FF DSLRs also have substantial grips. We don’t disagree here. Which means you should also agree that a FF DSLR-sized grips should suffice for MF lenses?
            What’s the point? The point is to significantly reduce the body bulk of MF.
            It really boils down to this. I think the bulk (depth) reduction is something substantial to be gained whilst not adversely affecting handling but improving it. You don’t think so. Its subjective. You’ve said why you think it’s pointless. I’ve said why I think it is useful. I think we can end that part of the discussion here unless you have more to add?
            Leica S is a smaller MF camera and its design does improve handling IMO. I’m saying making 645 mirrorless can make it similar to Leica S size which will improve its handling.

          • David


          • David

            You should really read my comments one by one because you ARE ignoring.

            1. Battery: Making MF camera to Mirrorless is already out of point. Using DSLR battery? Mirrorless itself use more powers since all parts are electronics. Mirrorless MF camera is way over your dream.

            2. Size: I really don’t understand why MF is huge? They are almost have same size except for width due to digital back and viewfinder. If you are arguing about the size with digital back MF, you are wrong because they needed compatibility and modular system. Pentax 645 series are not big either. The mount size is way bigger that current FF body size won’t fit that much. Take a look at the size of MF mounts. Making the MF body size to 35mm ff body is really ridiculous and unbalance. Look at this pic. Both 35mm and MF have similar size already. If you complain about the digital back size and view finder then use Leica S then.(You have to aware that Lecia S use smaller MF sensor compare to crop mf sensor.) Making mirrorless is pointless. Do you even know the main reason of making mirrorless? The current size is fine. Making smaller is really unbalanced and weird. If you still think that MF is huge, that’s your subjective opinion.

            3. Mirrorless: There are still a lot of cons for mirrorless especially for MF cameras. Why MF companies had to risk this? Both Hasselblad and Phase one have another sensor inside the body for AF system. Battery power can not hold constant live view features unless the MF is a digital back that can hold 30~60min max for long exposure.(Which is the main reason for digital back) For medium format with more than 40mp is REALLY meaningless due to pixel sensitivity which create blurry images even at high shutter speed sometimes(That’s why pro camcorders have a huge size in order to steady the video). The mechanical reliability of mirrorless camera is way less than DSLR currently because all parts are electronic components have limited durability. Who wanna pay for MF camera systems for repairing and inspection after few years? Even few Sony mirrorless pro photographer complained about this issue.

            If you think that mirrorless will bring smaller size of MF camera, that’s totally wrong. You have to think about other issues and the size won’t be change especially with the digital back system.

          • Davo

            I have been more than courteous in addressing your points but I have to explain things over and over to you.

            1. For the nth time, there’s no confusion over power requirements. Why would you carry over a DSLR battery and not have a dedicated designed for constant power battery which is of a larger size and higher capacity when designing for mirrorless.

            2. What part of depth do you not understand?
            Why are you going on about the width and mount size. They relate to the height and width requirements of the camera.
            You yourself mentioned that the height and width are not too dissimilar between FF DSLRs and Pentax 645 and that’s true but yet you think 645 mount on a DSLR sized camera would be ridiculous. I only said ‘approaching’ FF DSLR sized, not the same size. If you want a better template then we’ll use your Leica S as an example. The mount area width and height is adequate.
            For the entire conversation I have been talking about the depth of the 645 cameras. Isn’t it obvious when discussing mirrorless and the removal of the mirror that it is the depth that we are talking about reducing.
            Why are you going on about digital backs? I made no mentions of digital backs.
            Yes, I’ve said it over and over it is my subjective opinion that MF is huge in its depth dimension. I’m genuinely surprised you didn’t realise which dimension I was referring to regarding size reduction with respect to mirrorless vs mirrored.

            3. Nobody is arguing there are no cons with mirrorless systems. You’re projecting an opinion for me that I don’t have.
            Why take any risks at all. Why explore other avenues of doing things that MIGHT just get the job done better.
            Again with the power requirements. Your predictor that all MF mirrroless cameras will have poor battery life because current digital backs do is just very short sighted.
            Are you trying to imply that moving parts are more reliable than non-moving parts?
            And somehow that there are no electronics in a mirrrored MF that can affect its durability, if you feel electronics have such poor durability.
            If you want to talk about stability, then eliminating the mirror can only help.
            Reducing a Pentax 645 sized camera to that of something like an Leica S can only help with the handling but is hardly a skimpy A7 if you want to talk about vibrations. Again with your preconceptions that we’re talking about an A7 sized MF camera.

            By definition, making a camera mirrorless and reducing depth already bring down the size of the camera. Its not what I think, it is a fact. Reduce the depth, and you reduce the overall bulk and size if other dimensions are kept equal. Whether that’s significant to you, its up to you. But it WILL be smaller.
            I’m not saying mirrorless is a bed of roses and that its the saviour of all things photographic or anything of that sort.
            I’m hardly a mirrorless pusher. Having dabbled in many mirrorless formats I’ve rejected most and am about to sell off my last remaining mirrorless system that I decided to really try out.
            All I’ve argued is reducing the depth and the resultant bulk improves the handling of a medium format camera and to do so requires the removal of the mirrorbox.

          • David

            How many times am I talking about this?

            I already contacted to both hasselblad and phase one manager about the mirrorless system. Guess what? Both told me Nah. Phase one manager told me that making mirrorless camera is REALLY meaningless just for the size. Even they wanna make a mirrorless MF camera, there will be small difference of the size. Base on their comment, mirrorless system for MF camera is out of point. Much smaller body? No differences at all. And they don’t wanna risk any cons from mirrorless system also. Performance, quality, and compatibility are way important than mirrorless for now. If they have to make a new mirrorless MF camera, then they have to make totally a new one. However, mirrorless does not help MF camera to be smaller because of its performance. Look how big Leica SL is. Even this is a mirrorless camera, it still have a huge body and lenses are much bigger than any other DSLR lenses which is very unbalanced. Many photographers hate this kind of unbalanced combination. This is one of the biggest concern for both Hasselblad and Phase one so they said. Since you demand mirrorless MF camera for the size, it won’t be that easy and not that possible because of unbalanced combination, meaningless action, and worthless plan. Fujifilm and sony might try RF style mirrorless MF camera so why don’t you ask them to make what you want. Hope you don’t hate RF style.

          • Davo

            I’m not demanding anything nor do I hate any particular styles of camera.

            This is a discussion on a forum about relative merits of a theoretical MF mirrorless camera, although more specific to Pentax the conversation veered off towards general MF.

            Technology marches on and companies are free to make their own feasibility studies and whether ROI is worthwhile. When tech or costs or markets reach a certain tipping point, they will do what they want to do. I hardly think they are sharing all their future development plans with everyone so openly. Do you think they want to market and shower any praise for a product they don’t sell?
            They may be considering mirrroless, they may not. The tech might not be there yet for them but this doesn’t change the fact that removing the mirror does reduce the camera depth which is what this conversation is about.
            Meaningless and worthless are your opinions which you’re entitled to. Its already clear you don’t think this depth reduction coupled with other associated changes that mirrroless entails makes a significant difference but I do and so be it. Let’s just agree to disagree.
            BTW, I thought there was agreement that lens sizes are growing due to the resolution needs of modern sensor or are you asserting that mirrorless somehow necessitate larger lenses now?

          • David

            Im going to stop this discussion because it’s really stupid to talk about this. What a wasting time that I’m telling facts here.

          • Davo

            Great, we’re in agreement for once.

          • teila

            MF bodies are fine for eye level and waist level shooting as far as I’m concerned. I’d rather them waste time working on other technologies as opposed to making a MF camera mirror less. There’s just too many other things that I’d rather benefit from.

          • Peter Stein

            Fuji has it now

          • Davo

            Precisely. Hasselblad too of course but I think there were quite different design objectives between the two. But both of which illustrates what I was talking about (the Fuji lines up more closely to what I had in mind) and what I feel the Pentax 645 could have been.

          • A mirrorless camera with the sensor in this article would still be better than either of those — something built like a digital Mamiya 7.

          • Davo

            Yes, there’s still room for Pentax to pivot but they missed the first to market buzz which is a shame. I always thought MF was a good platform for mirrorless but 9 months ago when the initial conversation took place, I couldn’t have imagined there’d be two options popping up so soon.

    • J. Effingham Bellweather

      Mirrorless is the biggest con since “the cloud”. Lens and mirrorless camera combos are almost as large and heavy as conventional dslr-lens setups. So many other hidden costs to going mirrorless.

      • Davo

        Nobody’s conning anyone. There are advantages and disadvantages to mirrorless.
        There will be a depth reduction. Whether that matters to you or not is up to you. Nobody’s forcing anybody to like or accept anything but the depth reduction is there and it is the largest compared to any other digital formats because of the size of the MF mirror.

      • Shaepour

        agreed mirrorless is not very ideal but it does come in handy for certain types of photography … and overall, it’s lighter in weight and smaller in size and as of this moment, some ML MF digital cameras offered by Sony and Fuji are doing a really decent job after all …

      • Shaepour

        agreed mirrorless is not very ideal but it does come in handy for certain types of photography … and overall, it’s lighter in weight and smaller in size and as of this moment, some ML MF digital cameras offered by Hasselblad and Fuji are doing a really decent job after all …


    It’s good to see that Ricoh is heavily investes in anything Pentax. The Hoya years still haunt me…

  • Rob S

    Dream specs:

    100MP sensor
    smaller body removing the significant air space in the current one
    $5K price tag

    • $5k? Really? If it’s your wild dream here why not .05 because $5k is just as unrealistic

  • One Hundred and one megapixels, the images should be breathtaking. Hopefully the lenses can take advantage of all that resolution.

  • Originaru

    Well, this full format… Anyone remembers the about the rumor with fuji mount? Well fuji and MF lenses, long history short… Im kind of excited!

  • Umano Teodori

    I don’t think so, pentax mf format is smaller than the phase one 100 mpix

  • Frank

    My main issue with the 645D/Z is the lack of wide-angle lenses. I’m currently using the 35mm which is just not wide enough. The way I see it, I can either get the super-heavy 28-45 for around $4,500. Or, if this new body is around the same price, get it instead and use my current glass.

    In the spec list, it shows various lens mount options. What’s that all about?

    • I think those last three… from Mount Option to Live View specs are from the PhaseOne XF and not tied to the sensor itself. It’s possible of course… but I’m guessing that Pentax wants to sell Pentax lenses. I’m with you though… there’s a couple modern-day lenses missing from the line up. Heck, I’d settle for a lens road map with actual dates on it that they would stick to.

    • teila

      The 28-45 has heft, but it’s not much heavier than large 35mm lenses. There’s also the 25mm lens that’s no longer manufactured but still out in the wild.

  • Sator Photo

    Is the Pentax 645 digital system full frame ready? That is, does the image circle of the current digital lenses (not the reissues of film era 645 lenses) cover the full frame sensor surface? Are 645Z users currently using full frame lenses on a cropped body? Or are current 645 digital lenses dedicated for use only with cropped sensors?

    • David

      There are DFA mf lenses which covers FF format. DA lenses are crop mf camera only. FA cover FF too but they are film lenses. We’ll see later because we don’t know anything about the new mf camera.

  • Al Ahmadi

    we all know that Sony develops the sensors for almost all cameras manufactures including medium format .. Phaseone iq250, Hasselblad h5d 50c and Pentax 645z they all share the same exact sensor what differs in the body and the line of lenses .. I would say that this rumors would be happening any soon because Phaseone just announced the 100 digital back around 2 months ago while Hasselblad stated that they are changing the medium format game before 2 day figuratively speaking which can only mean that they either adopted that same sensor or they are finally bringing new changes to their bodies .. well lets cut the talk for Pentax to compete with other brands they need first to improve their lenses line up I say that because am a 645z owner and I have been facing problems with choosing the best lenses for my work .. now before anyone get furious with me and say they already have a great lenses line up well they do but most of their great lenses are manual and they are little behind in technology while the price of these lenses are kinda affordable but what I meant is the new auto focus lenses such as 55mm and 28-45mm .. they are great in all measures but we need more choices .. Thank you

  • Foamberg

    think we passional mf amateurs are able to put a lot of pressure to pro photographer! 😀

  • waterengineer

    Can someone please explain the “mounting options” line, please? Does that mean those lenses will mount with an adapter and clear the mirror, or exactly what does it mean? THIA.

  • sick!!!!!

  • Günter Hofstädter

    But they need a couple of new lenses too! Right?

  • J. Effingham Bellweather

    Please pentax make it so. How about 400mm f/4.0 & 800mm f/4.0 AF FL too?

  • George Sillanpaa

    I have a 645d and a nikon d610, and would upgrade, only if the quality of the photos would be a quantum leap better. So along with the upgrade to 100 mp, I would demand better lenses. I can not afford a phase, and love the pentax because it is sealed, and easy to use, but am experimenting with other lenses that can actually collect light. I never shoot over iso 800 so iso 50 is where I want to be. First one to make the camera and one f## lens that is fast and sharp, gets my purchase.

  • V. Anand

    I am hoping the price of Pentax 645Z will drop to compete with Fuji’s GFX 50S. I really like it’s raw files look, but it is bulkier.

  • Shaepour

    sorry folks if you don’t like what i’m going to say: that 100MP Sony CMOS sensor is — sorry again — CRAP!

    it’s certainly very good for the 4P camera enthusiasts … (4P = not so professional pixel peep photogs …) but not of the image quality expected of a ‘normal’ sensor!

    this stupid and useless pixel race is what’s making quite a number of experienced photographers go back to film photography for serious high quality works and leave digital on the side!

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