Make it 9 cameras instead

Lucky shot with a Pentax Q - Austin, Texas

Lucky shot with a Pentax Q – Austin, Texas

I mentioned a couple of days ago that I bought 8 cameras in 2014. Well scratch that, make it 9 cameras. My order came in early.

I’ve been raving lately about the Pentax Q7 I bought in Japan along with the full complement of lenses. The Q7 is actually the third iteration of the series. The original, simply called the Q, was released back in 2011. All of the Q cameras (the original Q, the Q10, Q7 and the newest QS-1) use the same lenses. There appears to be a following, at least in Japan, for the original Q. The camera is popular enough that it’s hard to find on the used market. Well luckily, I found a new one on Amazon and it was only $125 delivered, body only.

What makes the original Q so special? Other than being the first model of a new lens mount, it’s even smaller than the Q7 and it’s made of magnesium alloy. It’s a jewel of a camera and it originally sold with the prime lens for $799. Back then I thought it was crazy to pay that much a camera with a tiny 1/2.3″ sensor. Of course, I found out how fun the Q system is and with the blowout pricing, I was willing to give it a try.

Black and White Test with a Pentax Q - Austin, Texas

I custom programmed my favorite inky black and white, in-camera processing. Of course, Lucky is my favorite test subject whenever I get new gear. I’m happy to report that I get the same kind of look as on my Q7.

While very few reviews probably mention it, I find quite a few differences between the Q and the Q7. The obvious one is the Q7 has a slightly larger plastic body with a larger 1/1.7” sensor. But I noticed loads of other subtle and not so subtle differences. A few I like better but a bunch that I don’t. It’s clear that the Q7 has progressed over these 3 years.

I bought the Q mostly as a collector’s item. The first of a new line of cameras is always interesting to have. But I’ll certainly shoot it and do a comparison with the Q7. And as my test images show, it is certainly capable of producing strong photographs.

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7 thoughts on “Make it 9 cameras instead

  1. Impressive pictures with the Q! I too am one of the few photographing with the Pentax Q. Would you mind sharing your black & white settings?

  2. Great, I’m looking forward to that post! The Pentax Q is a playful camera and its quick dial practically asks for playing around with the various filters and settings. I love the black and white look the camera produces, but I think I haven’t been able to dial in black and white settings as gorgeous as yours.

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