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09-24-2011, 12:04 PM   #1
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Pentax K5 Battery Grip Why?

I am relatively new to Pentax (one year only with the Kx) and just ordered a K5. I have several questions for the K5 veterans: (1) Why do I need to buy a battery grip? My Kx does not have room for one, and I did just fine. (2) The Pentax grip for the K5 (and K7) is rather expensive, the aftermarket are 20% of the cost, are they any good, are they safe to use with the K5? (3) Firmware, what is that? Do I need to install a firmware 1.01 on my K5 (this is advise from this forum to be able to shoot fast speed), can I install that myself? Also, is there a 1.02 already? Where do I get it? Hey, thanks for your patience and I am all ears.

09-24-2011, 12:18 PM   #2
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1. Because the camera is too small without it and it makes verticals easier and it extends your battery life
2. Aftermarket ones aren't weather-sealed and apparently wear out faster (see here)
3. Post a separate thread / see here

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09-24-2011, 12:18 PM   #3
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My main reason for my battery grip preference is that it make for a much better hold and balance for my large hands.
I have had grips on K10d, K20d and K5 and find it much better handling and balance in all cases.
And, as Adam says, it is great for vertical (portrait format) shots with the extra shutter button etc for that purpose. Makes using the camera in the vertical position much easier.

The extra battery is, of course, another benefit of the grip. I feel that it is up to each individual's preference as it not as though the camera is totally dependant on it, but it is an extra benefit for those who so choose.
09-24-2011, 12:23 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
2. Aftermarket ones aren't weather-sealed and apparently wear out faster.
My aftermarket grip will probably outlast the camera. I bought it just to see if I'd use it. The answer was no, so it doesn't see a lot of wear.

09-24-2011, 04:16 PM   #5
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I dont have large hands. I bought an extra battery instead. Much better than carrying around a camera with the added weight and size of the grip.
09-24-2011, 04:24 PM   #6
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I shoot a lot of portraiture, where holding the camera vertical is a must.
The grip makes operation of the camera much easier when shooting verticals.
09-24-2011, 04:45 PM   #7
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A lot of the PF members do think the grip better balances shooting with longer lenses, I am not one of them. I bought DBG-2 because I thought it would balance shooting with longer lenses better but it didn't do anything for me, and I am talking about shooting with P6x7 SMC Takumar, 300/4.0, P6 CZJ 300/4.0, and Tamron SP 60B 300/2.8 lenses. One positive aspect of the grip is that shooting in the portrait mode feels more natural but the grip add to the K20D body's footprint considerably. As for the convenience of having an extra battery, I can fill a 16GB SDHC card (raw mode) with many instances of reviewing/pixel peeping on one fully charged battery. Needless to say, my grip stays packed in it's box.

09-24-2011, 06:31 PM   #8
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I had one for my Canon 5DII, it helped me hold the camera vertical while shooting weddings and gave me the extra battery range I needed. After I sold the Canon stuff (stopped wedding photography too) and purchased the K5, I though about getting one for it. However, after shooting hundreds of shots with a single charge, non professional , I decided it just added weight and made the camera too big to carry around easily. Yes, they can be handy, but I think I would rather do without.


09-24-2011, 07:17 PM   #9
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I have the grip, plus the L plate for my tripod attached as well. It feels perfect in my hands. The grip just made it that much better. I also got the Pentax unit, since whats the point of having a weather sealed camera body and lens, and not the grip. The quality is the same as the body.
09-24-2011, 07:33 PM   #10
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I use a grip on the K20D because it holds a battery, spare card, and remote. On the K-5, no grip because it does not hold everything. If it was $75, maybe...

Last edited by SpecialK; 10-03-2011 at 05:40 PM.
09-24-2011, 07:39 PM   #11
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I like my DBG-2, it is a bit pricey fo what it is, but I like it for shooting verticle's and I can take the camera for the weekend without the charger and not have much to worry about. 16GB in the camera, 8GB in the spare slot in the grip, and the 2 batteries keeps me going for as long as I need to.
09-24-2011, 08:39 PM   #12
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i find the grip to be essential for my hand otherwise my ring finger and pinky curl off the bottom of the K-5. I have the knockoff from Amazon and it has been great so far. though the packaging says "weathersealed", it has no seals that i could find but for this price i wont mind having to replace it down the road if it stops working. i have the version with gold contacts and metal posts and mount plate.
09-24-2011, 08:47 PM   #13
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Well, I just got the genuine Pentax from Adorama: $199 shipped.
09-24-2011, 10:00 PM   #14
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Worth every penny.
09-25-2011, 06:58 AM   #15
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I'm a little late to the party here as you're buying your grip, but my two cents: I use a grip when I'm out on a "high-volume shoot" like a school event or activity. In those instances, I'm spraying the crowd and taking many, many split second candid shots. In those situations I want lots of camera to grab and hold, and the grip really helps. I don't worry about a finger slipping or having to hold my hand in an awkward curve if I want to go portrait. These are shoots where I'll collect 400-500 shots over 3 hours. I WON'T use a grip on vacation, where the K-5 small size really pays off. But when I'm slinging the camera around, the grip makes the K-5 "fat" and I find those extra love handles extremely useful for hanging on.

I'm sure you'll find your new grip equally useful.

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