Lens compatibility and availability
|Ease of use|
|Value for money|
Published on: 31 May 2016
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Super high resolution and realistic image description far outperforming Full Frame DSLR
Professional photographers will appreciate the extended image area offered by the PENTAX 645Z, which offers a distinct perspective not found in full frame DSLR cameras.
Awe inspiring, true-to-life detail is attained by combining premium resolution, massive sensor size and an expansive sensitivity range. This combination far exceeds the expectations of full frame cameras and produces brilliant results only experienced with medium format photography.
Resolution and depth of expression brought by the size of the imaging area. This is the reason that medium-format cameras have been chosen for high-end photography that gives the top priority to image quality. The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with a large, 43.8 x 32.8 mm CMOS image sensor. With an imaging area approximately 1.7-times larger than a 35mm full-frame format, a higher degree of the sharpness and ambiance of the scene can be captured. Also, because the depth of field is shallow, the blurring effects can be controlled freely. The PENTAX 645Z is all the more effective and expressive to focus on a single point that you want to express for exciting photos.
The PENTAX 645Z has approximately 51.4 million effective pixels. This number of pixels is an absolute advantage when photographing subjects that require high resolution, such as scenery. The difference in sharpness and density of detail comes across clearly even in A3 size prints. Also, as a rich amount of information is included in each shot, tone jumping is less likely to occur, when working with RAW images, letting you boldly change parameters and freely customize the finish without worrying about ruining the image.
The ultra high-sensitivity max. ISO 204800 is made possible by delicate and thorough image noise processing through an image processor and image sensor of a high SN ratio. Even at high ISO settings, excellent image quality is possible with reduced noise and outline blurring. Even in the same shooting conditions, the greater freedom for the wider setting of aperture value and shutter speed allows you to express blur and emotion just the way you like.
The PENTAX latest image processor, PRIME III is used in the 645Z. This processor boasts a maximum processing speed that is approx. five times greater than the PRIME II. So instantaneous processing of the large amounts of data produced by an approx. 51.4 million effective pixels is possible. This processor also contributes to significantly improved performance, such as a faster Instant Review.
Although false colours and moire are suppressed, low pass filters unfortunately reduce the overall sharpness of image. As part of the design concept this filter was removed from the image sensor unit to give first priority to resolution on the PENTAX 645Z. This construction succeeds in bringing out the full potential of the lens and image sensor's resolution. The unsurpassed resolution representation will resolve individual leaves on trees in a landscape shot.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with fully featured lens correction functionality. Together with distortion and magnification chromatic aberration, peripheral illumination correction and diffraction correction are newly added. Diffraction that occurs when stopping down the lens during shooting is corrected effectively in the PENTAX 645Z. Additionally, it is equipped with fringe correction for use in processing RAW images. This camera will support the higher quality finish.
Fine and smooth gradations
The large CMOS image sensor has ample pixel pitch and output a high SN ratio signal even with a high pixel count. Highlight blow-out and loss of shadow detail are uncommon on the PENTAX 645Z, and tonal changes are reproduced in the high pixel count areas only. The smooth connection between shadows and colours provides images with more detailed descriptions.
Beautiful blurring and rich three-dimensional feel
The main feature of medium-format cameras can also been seen in their blurring effects. The depth of field is shallow and blurring is smooth. Subjects captured with the aperture at its widest setting appear more three-dimensional than even when seen with the naked eyes. These features make the soft, rich three-dimensional expression and atmosphere that are particular to medium-format cameras possible for a deeper significance in photographs.
Quick and responsive operation has been achieved by renewing the entire image processing performance. In addition to Auto Focus, image processing, the operation of Instant Review display has been significantly improved, comparing to the PENTAX 645D. Also equipped with a large-capacity buffer memory the writing time to the memory card has become less, which helps you take a number of RAW-format images smoothly with continuous shooting. These features make it possible to continue releasing the shutter with a comfort that had not been previously possible on medium-format cameras. The PENTAX 645Z is ideal for portrait and moving subject photography.
The AF system used on the PENTAX 645Z is SAFOX 11. Diffraction lenses are used in the optical system for aberration suppression. By sharpening images on the sensor, superb focusing precision is achieved. A light source detection sensor is also included for thorough cancellation of even minute influence on AF from specific artificial light sources. This precision focusing and response system perfectly matches the needs of high-resolution images.
The three AF points at the centre of the screen support F2.8 beam AF. When using a lens with a maximum aperture value of F2.8, a high level of focusing precision is possible. This is especially effective for when you want to make the depth of field extremely shallow or to make severe focus in shots
By using a high-sensitivity AF sensor, a low luminance limit of -3EV is achieved (25 centre points). Even with darker subjects that are difficult to see, this AF provides smooth and accurate focusing for a greater range of scenes.
27 AF points are available. 25 points are cross-type focus points equipped with line sensors in both the horizontal and vertical directions. The excellent sensing capability of this function applies to all subjects.
This feature detects the colour distribution in the screen, subject colour, and its movement, and optimizes automatic linkage and control of AE, AF and white balance. The backbone of this is the scene analysis system that links the approx. 86,000 pixel RGB metering sensor and PRIME III. By comprehensively analyzing scenes, high-precision and consistant shooting is possible.
The PENTAX 645Z uses an approximate 86,000 pixel RGB metering sensor which captures scenes on a real-time basis, detecting brightness, colour, and movement on a scale so fine that it is on a different dimension than the traditional 77 zone metering system. The low-luminance limit is -1EV (ISO 100/55mm, F2.8). This feature achieves a high accuracy of exposure control even with a low illumination.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with Multi-Pattern Auto WB, which divides the screen into small sections and applies the optimal white balance to each. This function resolves the colour temperature differences due to differing light sources, shadow, and sunlight, and provides stable colour reproduction that looks similar to the way scenes appear to the naked eyes.
The dual slots conform to the UHS-I standard. With high-speed writing, buffer clearing time is shortened, contributing to quick shooting. Additionally, files are written sequentially to two separate card slots for recording duplicates, and RAW/JPEG separation. Eye-Fi cards and FLU cards (O-FC1, optional) can also be used.
Note: Eye-Fi and FLU cards with wireless LAN functions can be used in SD2 slot.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with an LCD monitor that features a tilt mechanism. It can be moved 35° in a downward direction and 125° upward direction. Incorporating a large 3.2 inch, approximately 1.037 million dot, high-definition, wide viewing angle panel, this feature makes it possible to shoot at low angles and high angles while looking at the Live View display from a more comfortable position. It also features an air gapless construction that suppresses internal reflections. Reinforced glass with AR coating is used for superb visibility, protection from scratches, durability, and is crush resistant.
This model is equipped with the Live View function which can be used for accurate focus checking on a magnified display (max. 16x). In addition to Contrast AF which obtains extremely accurate focusing, you can set Focus Peaking and Face Detect AF. As effects such as Custom Image and white balance are reflected on the screen, you can expand your range of expression.
The PENTAX 645Z inherits the traditional DSLR style from the PENTAX 645 series in its integrated viewfinder, image sensor unit, and grip. Excellent operational reliability and focus accuracy are achieved so you never have to worry about poor connection with the digital back, or focus errors due to poor mounting. Additionally, by optimizing the weight balance and making the grip shape easy to hold, a medium-format digital camera that offers comfortable hand-held shooting is achieved.
To make the camera body more compact, a trapezoidal prism was used. The mount is tilted forward at 9° from the body, further optimizing the optical route for a shorter overall height. A Kepplerian telescope type is used for the eyepiece optical system, achieving both a high magnification factor and wide angle of view. This viewfinder features a large field of view that rivals that on 35mm full-frame cameras. The field of view is approx. 98%, and the focusing screen is replaceable. A natural bright matte screen is standard, making it easy to capture focus peaks.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with a high-speed, long-life drive unit that clears durability tests of over 100,000 shots, equivalent to double that of the PENTAX 645D. This not only allows you to shoot a continuous shot but also to shoot people and moving objects that are frequently being shot and to make digital archives, all of which meet the difficult needs of pro photographers.
Anticipating poor conditions encountered in outdoor shooting, this camera features a dust and splash resistant construction. 76 different places including buttons, dials, and covers are carefully sealed to keep out raindrops, humidity, and dust. The same construction is also used on AW lenses. When combined with an AW lens, this camera can shoot even in severe conditions such as. rain fall and dust.
This camera was tested in -10°C environments, confirming operation accuracy, stability, responsiveness, and changes in battery status. With this kind of protection, you can always be ready to take the camera into cold environments where the digital devices normally do not work properly.
The camera exterior and tiltable LCD monitor are made of lightweight and high-strength magnesium alloy. This material provides superb shock absorption, and heat dissipation, as well as excellent electromagnetic shielding, high durability and reliability. It stands up to hard use and protects the internal precision mechanisms of the camera.
To achieve a chassis that supports the flange, viewfinder and optical system of the AF light path, a high level of strength and accurate dimensions are necessary. Die-cast aluminum was used for its high strength, achieving a highly precise assembly and high rigidity. Additionally, the image sensor unit is attached to the chassis via a heat dissipation shield. Heat is released by making the rear section of the chassis a heat sink, reducing noise that occurs due to dark current.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with DR II (Dust Removal II), to avoid the problem of dust particles. The DRII can effectively remove all dust particles clinging to the surface of the CMOS image sensor unit by vibrating the UV/IR reduction filter with piezoelectric element at supersonic speed.
On the PENTAX 645Z, you can record Full HD movies at a maximum of 60i, and HD movies at a maximum of 60p. Even at the same resolution, when the large image sensor of the PENTAX 645Z is taken advantage of, depiction that overflows with three-dimensional detail can be obtained that rivals cinema camera super 35mm and 35mm full-frame cameras. As you can apply Custom Image such as Cross Process effects, you can create movies with a diverse array of tones. Setting the maximum sensitivity of ISO 3200 for recording is possible. One of the benefits is you can shoot movies with a minimum of lighting. In addition to a built-in stereo microphone, the PENTAX 645Z is also equipped with an external microphone jack (levels can be adjusted).
The compression format is MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, and file format is MOV.
4K interval movies function is equipped on this camera which lets you take images that were captured for a certain interval and connect them to record as a single movie. Resolution is approximately four times higher than that of Full HD. With this feature you can experience the world of super high-resolution movies. Full HD and HD is also supported.
- The compression format is Motion JPEG, and file format is AVI.
- The shooting interval can be set from 2 seconds to 1 hour, and the shooting time can be set from 14 seconds to 99 hours. The shooting time available for setting will change depending on the shooting interval.
- Max. shutter speed is 1/30 sec.
- To play back a 4K Interval Movie, a computer environment that supports 4K movie playback is required.
Recorded format can be selected from RAW, JPEG and TIFF. For RAW images, the PENTAX-original PEF is supported, as well as DNG, which is highly compatible with Adobe applications. JPEG files can be recorded simultaneously with RAW images, and have flexibility in recording size and image quality settings. You can select TIFF when you would like to record with uncompressed format.
*TIFF files can not be recorded simultaneously with RAW and JPEG.
RAW data can be processed on the camera and saved as a JPEG or TIFF file. The PENTAX 645Z features a full range of adjustment options at high speeds. Enjoy the freedom of adjusting images only with a camera.
[Adjustable options when processing RAW images]
â—ï¿½ Recording settings: File Format (JPEG/TIFF), Aspect Ratio, JPEG Recorded Pixels, JPEG Quality, Colour Space
â—ï¿½ Lens Correction: Distortion Correction, Lat-Chromatic-Ab Adj, Peripheral Illumin. Corr., Diffraction Correction, Colour Fringe Correction
â—ï¿½ White Balance
â—ï¿½ Custom Image
â—ï¿½ Digital Filter
â—ï¿½ HDR (only when shooting HDR)
â—ï¿½ High-ISO NR
â—ï¿½ Shadow Correction
The shutter will automatically be activated at the set interval and number of shots. This feature is effective for recording subjects that slowly change over time. Interval Merge with multiple exposure is also possible for use with this function. Intervals can be set from 2 seconds to 24 hours, with a maximum of 2,000 shots, for a variety of expressions.
A single image with a wide dynamic range is created from three images with differing exposures. In addition to adjusting the exposure amplitude*1 according to the scene, because the camera can automatically correct minor changes to the position of the composition between images*2, you can enjoy easy hand-held HDR photography. Also, because the original three images are saved as RAW data, you can use them separately for development as other creations. All three images are saved as a single RAW file, making data management easy.
*1 : Exposure amplitude can only be set when shooting
*2 : Automatic position adjustment may not be possible for large position differences and due to patterns in some subjects.
Set the amount of shots (from 2 to 2,000) and merge them into a single image. Each time the shutter button is pressed, exposure is adjusted and images are merged, and you can check the results in detail on the LCD screen. You can select the composite mode from three options to match your varied expressive intentions.
Creates a composite image with the average exposure. You can easily enjoy multi-exposure photography without adjusting the exposure for each shot
Creates a composite image of the cumulatively added exposure.
Compares each shot, selects the bright sections and merges those selected sections. Because the dark sections are left as-is, this is effective for photographing the moon, fireworks, or illuminated buildings and other objects when you want to highlight the contrast.
Custom Image lets you create images that match the subject to your expressive intentions. The PENTAX 645Z has 11 variations for flexible image control that matches your preferences. The colour saturation, hue, key, contrast, and sharpness can all be adjusted in each Custom Image variation.
* The parameters that can be adjusted will differ depending on the Custom Image option.
You can apply Digital Filter when playing back images. There are 19 different types of filters to choose from. When processing RAW images in-camera, select a filter to add an effect and save the image.
* You cannot apply Digital Filter when shooting images.
[Digital Filter Options]
Base Parameter Adj, Extract Colour, Toy Camera, Retro, High Contrast, Shading, Invert Colour, Unicolour Bold, Bold Monochrome, Tone Expansion, Sketch, Water Colour, Pastel, Posterization, Miniature, Soft, Starburst, Fish-eye and Slim
The PENTAX 645Z is compatible with FLU cards equipped with a wireless LAN function. Using the browser on a smartphone or tablet device, you can control the camera while checking the Live View display. In addition to touching anywhere on the screen to start AF, you can set the exposure, ISO sensitivity, release, as well as view and save recorded images.
* Compatible cards: FLUCARD FOR PENTAX 16GB O-FC1 (sold separately)
* Smartphones and tablet devices that use iOS or AndroidTM can be used.
This function detects camera tilt in the left/right directions, and forward/backward directions and displays information in 0.5° increments. In addition to monitoring images when shooting with the viewfinder, it is possible to display via the exposure bar in the viewfinder. You can also display this function when shooting in Live View, helping you adjust the composition and camera tilt at the same time.
In addition to the bottom section of the camera, the sides are also equipped with tripod sockets. As the optical axis does not change when switching from a horizontal to vertical holding position, you can efficiently continue stable shooting.
In studios that use digital cameras, each trial shot is viewed on a computer so that lighting and camera settings can be refined. With the new Image Transmitter 2 software, the PENTAX 645Z can be operated remotely using a computer. In addition to importing images to a user-set folder on the computer, exposure settings such as aperture and ISO sensitivity can be set, as well as activating the shutter while viewing the Live View screen for significantly improved studio shooting efficiency.
- Automatically transfer images to a computer
- Remote camera operation from a computer (shutter release, aperture, shutter speed, ISO sensitivity , EV compensation)
- Live View display on a computer
Two types of new square grids with a narrower vertical/horizontal line pitch(width) are now available, making it easier to capture images that you plan to merge later, and to make recording usage more efficient. Because the grid pattern is tighter than previous versions, it is easier to match the positions of the main subject image and the image for merging. It is also possible to select 16 zones, the golden ratio, and scale display. As grid colours can be selected from transparent white or transparent black, visibility is guaranteed, as well.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with an HDMI jack. With this, you can connect the camera to a TV or computer monitor to output Live View or recorded images. This jack provides a variety of uses such as checking images with multiple staff at the same time, and viewing slide shows or movies.
*While the camera is connected to an AV device, nothing is displayed on the camera monitor. Also, you cannot adjust the volume on the camera.
This feature is useful when making copies of images. Normally, when setting materials to shoot at the correct position from the photographer's point of view, the recorded image is rotated 180° as seen in the right figure. Simply rotate 180° to record the rotate information of the correct position. Because Live View and HDMI output is also rotated 180° and displayed, it is easy to operate while viewing on a computer or TV screen.
* Only rotate information is recorded.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with a USB3.0 jack. When connected with a compatible computer, high-speed communication that is leaps and bounds beyond USB 2.0 is possible. This feature makes image transfer stress free when shooting with Live View on a computer.
The PENTAX 645Z is equipped with a key/dial operation lock to prevent mistaken operation of dials and buttons when shooting. In addition to the front/back dials, this feature temporarily deactivates the buttons mainly connected to exposure controls such as exposure compensation and ISO sensitivity. Additionally, the scope of the locking function can be expanded to encompass virtually every button except for the shutter release button.
This software can be used to process RAW images, save as JPEG and TIFF format, adjust images, and manage files. This software uses the highly-reputed SILKYPIXR engine. Putting finishing touches on images is easy and comfortable with RAW processing and a rich variety of adjustment options. You can also use this soware to add copyright information to the Exif data, and check the authenticity of images.
We recommend the following system requirements to connect your camera to a computer and to install and use the Digital Camera Utility 5 software included.
- OS: Windows® 8.1 (32bit/64bit)/Windows® 8 (32bit/64bit)/Windows® 7(32bit/64bit)/Windows Vista® (32bit/64bit) - CPU:Intel® Core™ 2 Quad or higher - Memory: 4GB or higher - Hard drive space: Approx. 100MB or more (available space during installation or when launched), approx.. 25 MB (for image file storage) (JPEG) or approx.. 70 MB (RAW) - Monitor: 1280 x 1024 pixels, 24bit colour or greater
- OS: Mac OS X 10.9/10.8/10.7/10.6 - CPU:Intel® Core™ 2 Quad or higher - Memory: 4GB or higher - Hard drive space: Approx. 100 MB or more (available space during installation or when launched), approx.. 25 MB (for image le storage) (JPEG) or approx.. 70 MB (RAW) - Monitor: 1280 x 1024 pixels, 24bit colour or greater
* Supported operating systems are limited to those installed on a computer and updated to the latest versions.
* Operation is not guaranteed on all computers with the recommended specifications.