Phase One

Phase One/Alpa A-Series modular MF camera prices

Announced at DPReview yesterday prove one thing: DPReview readers do not 'get' professional photography that shoots the boundaries of wedding and portrait business. Technical cameras have always been expensive. Even Japanese clones from Horseman typically start at around 3.000$. 

My Horseman uses plastic teeth, has brakes placed too closely to focus gears, wobbles, and still it costs 3.000$. Then add the film/sensor and lenses. At a minimum, a full technical camera will cost 20.000$, and that with last-generation technology. It has always been the case.

The Phase One modular backs/ALPA camera bodies/Rodenstock lens systems start at 47.000$ USD. Each part can be replaced, upgraded, or melded into a different whole. Modular cameras are LEGO pieces, not plastic Kinder Surprise statues.

DPReview readers don't know this. They think the world of cameras is and always has been composed of body/sensor/film combinations that cannot be removed one from the other. The invariable, and trollish horning in rampant at DPReview is by users mentioning that you can get a Pentax 645z for 8500$. 

Yes, you can. And it probably is a great dSLR. If you can use a dSLR or other flanged camera for your work, great. But that doesn't meant that a dSLR works for everyone. It doesn't for me.

Phase One build cameras not for the elite, but for the photographer that needs modularity rather than the cookie-cutter shoe-horning of customers. They are priced, like every self-respecting product, not to apparent performance standards, but to utility, to build quality, to precision standards that neither Pentax nor its user base understand.

Again, I don't understand why any website with such a broad user base - a base composed of professionals that know a thing or two, as well as lovers of kitsch - would continue to allow user comments. 

Source: Phase One and Alpa release official details and pricing of A-Series medium format cameras