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07-20-2012, 11:28 AM   #1
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Upgrading from a *ist DL to a K-5!

Hi all,

I'm a longtime Pentax shooter - my grandfather and uncle used Pentaxes back in the 1960s-1980s, I shot on a Pentax SF10 35mm camera through the 1990s and early 2000s, and in 2006 I picked up a *ist DL. I'm an amateur shooter whose levels of avidness increase and decrease given the amount of time I have to spend, but I aspire to be (and consistently fall short of being) a really good landscape photographer.

As much as I liked shooting Pentax, I've become a bit weary of fighting with the *ist DL's poor dynamic range, poor low-light performance, chronic underexposure and noisy output (all of which could be my fault, as people are certainly capable of getting great output out of that camera). I just ordered a K-5 and *could not be more excited* about exploring the capabilities of this new camera. And since I was much less happy with my most-used lens, the 18-55mm kit lens, in comparison with my DA 10-17mm fisheye and old Takumar 70-200mm, I've also invested in the DA 16-45mm, the DA-L 55-300mm, and the Sigma 10-20 4-5.6. I'm also taking the opportunity to get more current with Photoshop and to try to improve my post-processing skills and workflow.

To say I'm excited to get the new camera and get started would be an understatement. K-5 shooters who have upgraded from previous Pentax D-SLRs, what are you happiest about in your upgrade? What took you the longest to learn? Any tips/tricks to share?

I'm excited to join the community here as well.

Chris Hafner

07-20-2012, 11:56 AM   #2
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Compared with the K-10, the K-5 has much more intuitive controls, is smaller, quieter, and focuses more reliably. If you exploit the greater dynamic range, it's stunning. Going to ISO6400 is simply no concern - it's pretty noiseless. The revised controls are a bit to get used to but honestly when going back to the K-10 I have to think now, where I simply don't with the K-5.

What took me longest to learn? To not miss the Shake Reduction lever. Just keep the shutter speed up and shoot away. I used to turn it on and off all the time, which I probably didn't have to do. I also have set up a fast-shot user-mode, and click into that when at the park with the dogs or something.

I also have that 16-45 and 10-17 (such a fun lens) and the 55-300. I did buy a 18-135 on the used market and find that it works VERY well on the K-5.

You're gonna love it, just like getting a new car replacing a 20-yr old one...
07-20-2012, 12:03 PM   #3
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Welcome to the collective Chris. Upgrading to the K5 from the ist DL will be like going from a mid '65 Mustang to 2012 Mustang. Congratulations for making the decision and post soon and/or post some of your ist'DL work..........Cliff
07-20-2012, 12:18 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by hafner Quote
I've become a bit weary of fighting with the *ist DL's poor dynamic range
This post demonstrates you've made a good decision:

07-20-2012, 12:44 PM   #5
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When you receive your K5 be sure to spend some time reading the manual, and you will get full value from your new camera. Be prepared to be amazed at the advance from your previous Pentax.
07-20-2012, 12:56 PM   #6
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G'day Chris. The K-5 is a marvel in APS-C photography. A fine piece of engineering. What you'll notice immediately coming from the older generation entry-level models is a marked increase in responsiveness: AF, shutter actuation and processing are all very fast. You'll definitely like the brilliant images it produces even at ISO 3200 and 6400.
07-20-2012, 02:21 PM   #7
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my first camera was the *istDL and I was pretty knocked out when i upgraded to the K10D, i tell ya! Then i got a K20D and then a K5 and was thrilled at the improvements between K20D and K5.

I am excited for you because i know you will love the K5!!

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