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06-10-2011, 05:13 PM   #1
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K7 as backup for K5

Recently joined the Pentax world with a K-5 plus some limited primes. I am very happy with the combination but sometime wish for a second body so two primes are loaded at once. I know that the K-5 is a good upgrade from the K-7 but would the K-7 hold it's own in most situations vis a vis the K-5. Is the K-7 the wrong body for a backup these days? I am asking because so many of them are showing up in the Marketplace and the prices are slowly dropping. Would you recommend a different body? Your thoughts appreciated.

Dave

06-10-2011, 05:30 PM   #2
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It really depends on your expectations. I think pretty much any recent DSLR would be a good backup body. The K-7 can share accessories and batteries with the K-5, so I think that would make it an even stronger contender.

I have both camera bodies and my K-5 just went off to get fixed for a strange problem. I had the K-7 a long time and really like it. Sure, I'd prefer having two (or more!) K-5 bodies, but they are not cheap. So right now I'm just shooting with the K-7. I can't express enough how having two camera bodies is a good idea. I often use both at once at events (for example K-5 with a 14mm f2.8 lens and the K-7 with a 55mm f1.4 lens).
06-10-2011, 06:30 PM   #3
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Maybe its just me, but the dynamic range of the K7 is quite a bit less.
In fact I believe it is less than the K10D.

The high ISO is crap, and I'd say it is only marginally better than the K10D.

That being said, I have still kept my K7 as a backup for my K5.
In reality, in most cases the K7 does just fine. It really depends on your shooting needs, whether the K7 would work for you in the first place.
06-10-2011, 10:13 PM   #4
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I think if you're going to buy a backup, the K20D might be a bit better. The K20D does have better high-iso performance than the K-7, but is also bigger and heavier, which I personally prefer.

06-11-2011, 12:44 AM   #5
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I think the best backup for your K-5 is another K-5, but failing that, the K-7 is a good option (as opposed to K20D), although the biggest failing of the K-7 compared to the K-5 would be the sensor performance, which isn't as good. Having said that, it's not that the K-7 sensor is that bad, it's just that the K-5 sensor is, comparatively, really good.

The main reason I would suggest the K-7 over the K20D is purely ergonomics, as their technical performance are similar enough. I had the K10D as a backup to my K-7, before going to a K-5/K-7 and now K-5/K-5 setup, and as similar as the K10D/K20D bodies are to the K-5/K-7 bodies, they are also different enough that sometimes it took just that little longer to change a setting/do something because I just swapped from a string of shots with the K-7 to the K10D. With the K-5/K-7, it's just pure muscle memory without that bit of delay just to confirm which body you're using; it'll also be worse if your K-5 is your primary body and you use it a lot, and you only take the K20D out as a 2nd body occasionally. That's my personal experience anyway, and I also prefer the feel and ergonomics of the K-5/K-7 series to the K10D/K20D series.

Also, if you get a K-7 (or even a 2nd K-5) as opposed to a K20d, you can use the same batteries (D-Li90) and charger, and battery grip as well.
06-11-2011, 03:35 AM   #6
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I use a K7 as back up to my K5. It works fine for most situations I use it for (although clearly lacks in dynamic range and high iso). I like the fact that the body styles are the same, grips are the same, batteries and chargers are the same. Just makes it handier when traveling.
06-11-2011, 03:40 AM   #7
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I have just returned from a days shooting with the K-5 and the K-7.

I believe the K-7 is a terrific camera , only failing in HIGH ISO noise. The fact that the two camera's are for all intents and purposes identical is a thing not to be overlooked. I don't have to have one way of doing things for one camera, and remember a different setup for the other.

I tend to use the K-7 for wide lenses or 'walkaround' lenses and the K-5 for the portrait and faster longer lenses.
06-11-2011, 06:19 AM   #8
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The time to use both prime and backup cameras would be shooting in an occasion where mostly indoor. Unless I am not allowed to use flash, then another k-5 would be the most suitable as backup, otherwise, k-7 would do a good job. I don't find the limitation of the k-7 sensor since I seldom (hardly) use higher than iso800 with flash.

06-11-2011, 07:59 AM   #9
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I don't have any problems with the K7 as a back up. It's used primarily outdoors with the DA40, usually ISO800 or below. Having run the coarse with the K10 and K20, my take is it is a lot more capable than either.
06-11-2011, 08:29 AM - 1 Like   #10
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I have a k5 and a K10D The K10d my only camera for several years (from when it came out until last winter.) but I had set it aside and not used is since I got the K5, but last week
I decided to go on a shoot of Mt. Saint Helens volcano and that called for a backup camera

My result was a lot of frustration. The cameras look enough alike that that you don't instinctively know which one you have, but the controls are enough different to cause my head to spin. While both will take good pictures, the techniques that I have developed to get those are significantly different.-----and I found the 'what camera am I using' and the how do I change that setting? differences serious enough that I have decided that the K10D must go. Even the batteries almost look alike--but aren't to the point of needing a different charger.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not dissing pentax for making the changes. the battery change was needed to provide more KWH for the movie mode, and the control changes are genuine improvements that give you more options or more convenience in selecting the options which I applaude. However trying to use both at the same time I found very difficult to the point that my K10D is on my disposal list, though I haven't quite decided when or how....

Conversely, the K7 is in the same body as the K5 and is much less likely to generate the frustration I've found moving between the K10D and the K5.
06-11-2011, 09:15 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by pop4 Quote
I think the best backup for your K-5 is another K-5
I agree, but I don't know wich one is my back-up now? I shoot most pictures with my black one and use the Silver one for some home stuff and walk-around next to it being a back-up.




Just a fun picture I just made for the question off wich eye you are looking true the viewfinder. I'm undescided at the time

A K-7 is a great camera, wich was my plan also, but then this K-5 thing came across my pad for a good deal on them.
06-11-2011, 09:36 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I use a K7 as back up to my K5. It works fine for most situations I use it for (although clearly lacks in dynamic range and high iso). I like the fact that the body styles are the same, grips are the same, batteries and chargers are the same. Just makes it handier when traveling.
Ditto everything in the post above.

I am selling my K7 though as the terrible high ISO performance drives me insane after the K5, I will either get another K5 or a D700 for something different.
06-11-2011, 12:05 PM   #13
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So a K-7 it is...

Thanks for all the informative inputs. It seems my gut feeling was right and that a K-7 is a very viable backup cam for the K-5. Would love two k-5 but the K-7 prices are getting very appealing these days. If high ISO is the main difference between the two, then that is not a problem. Put the wider lens on the K-7 and the longer lens which needs faster speeds on the K-5 bumped up a little ISO wise. Now off to get me a Wabbit, oh I mean a K-7. Dave
06-12-2011, 08:41 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by djc737 Quote
Thanks for all the informative inputs. It seems my gut feeling was right and that a K-7 is a very viable backup cam for the K-5. Would love two k-5 but the K-7 prices are getting very appealing these days. If high ISO is the main difference between the two, then that is not a problem. Put the wider lens on the K-7 and the longer lens which needs faster speeds on the K-5 bumped up a little ISO wise. Now off to get me a Wabbit, oh I mean a K-7. Dave
I owned a K20D and a K10D. When I bought my first K-5 I intended to use the K20D as a 2nd body.

I found the difference in bodies far too confusing when quickly trying to grab a shot.

So even if the K20D might have better ISO performance than a k-7, I think you might be better getting a K-7 as a 2nd body.

I opted to buy a 2nd K-5 as I love the much better Image Quality of the K-5. I'm not rich, I had to sell a load of stuff to fund it.
06-13-2011, 02:37 PM   #15
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That was certainly my plan...to use my K7 as a second body after I got my K5. That plan lasted about a day and a half. Shooting with the K5 for that long was all it took for me to lose interest in shooting the K7. I knew it would sit around collecting dust, so I sold it.
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