The New Pentax 645Z: Shoot HD Video with a 51.4MP Medium-Format Sensor

Aside from its cool new silver-framed Pentax logo, the new Pentax 645Z looks and feels very much like the previous Pentax 645D, but there are many significant differences. For starters, the 645Z has a new 51.4MP CMOS sensor that noticeably raises the image-quality bar. This 43.8 x 32.8mm sensor has no image-degrading anti-aliasing filter, either. An enlarged memory buffer enhances responsiveness, especially when shooting sequences and the Z is the first Pentax 645 that can shoot Full HD 1080p movies at 24p, 25p, 30p, and 50/60i up to ISO 3200, and is said to deliver superb video quality. It also has a built-in stereo microphone, an external mic jack, and it can create 4K interval movies.
The ergonomically contoured, beautifully finished 645Z delivers an ultra-high maximum ISO setting of 204800, employs Pentax¡¯s latest PRIME III image processor, and includes a lens-compensation function said to minimize the effects of optical distortion and chromatic aberration. Pentax claims that its advanced SAFOX II AF system, which is f/2.8 beam compatible, provides enhanced focusing precision that¡¯s particularly noticeable in low light. At the Pentax booth, it definitely appeared to work as advertised, and represented a definite improvement over previous models.
Finally, the Z is built on a rugged die-cast alloy chassis, includes 19 different special effects filters, and is compatible with FLU cards equipped with a wireless LAN function to provide easy image sharing as well as wireless camera control using a sport phone or similar device. The Z is, without a doubt, the most advanced Pentax 645 to date, offering a host of real-world updates that make it more competitive than ever.