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06-07-2013, 10:14 PM   #1
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Dilemma - please help

I have had my K-5 for around 18 months, and it's great, of course. However, I have been debating with myself (more chance of winning that way) getting a K-5 IIs, for the improved AF and as a second body. My dilemma is this - while the K-5 IIs is only (only?) $100 more than the K-5 II in the USA (about 70), it's 160 (around $250) more in the UK. I would readily pay 70, but I am balking at paying 160 to go AA filterless. I get pretty sharp images from my K-5 but they really need a bit of post processing to achieve the desired bite. I do a lot of landscape, so I need as much detail as possible. Would the K-5 IIs have a significant advantage, or would the K-5 II give me the same (or nearly the same) sharpness with PP?

Finally, before pulling the trigger, would I be wise to wait to see if Pentax comes out with a new, top-end APS-C in the coming months (I guess the answer to this must be pure speculation, unless someone has access to the arcane secrets of Planet Pentax)? K-5 II and IIs owners, please help - my money is burning a hole in my pocketses!

06-07-2013, 10:45 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
I have had my K-5 for around 18 months, and it's great, of course. However, I have been debating with myself (more chance of winning that way) getting a K-5 IIs, for the improved AF and as a second body. My dilemma is this - while the K-5 IIs is only (only?) $100 more than the K-5 II in the USA (about 70), it's 160 (around $250) more in the UK. I would readily pay 70, but I am balking at paying 160 to go AA filterless. I get pretty sharp images from my K-5 but they really need a bit of post processing to achieve the desired bite. I do a lot of landscape, so I need as much detail as possible. Would the K-5 IIs have a significant advantage, or would the K-5 II give me the same (or nearly the same) sharpness with PP?

Finally, before pulling the trigger, would I be wise to wait to see if Pentax comes out with a new, top-end APS-C in the coming months (I guess the answer to this must be pure speculation, unless someone has access to the arcane secrets of Planet Pentax)? K-5 II and IIs owners, please help - my money is burning a hole in my pocketses!
The difference is there w/ sharp lenses, but applying an unsharp mask to your K-5's files will yield similar results overall. Hopefully Pentax will come out with a 24mp body this year, but who knows!

Adam
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06-07-2013, 10:57 PM   #3
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Thank you Adam. I usually use a high pass filter for sharpening, as I think it gives a little bit more selectivity, but that's beside the point, really. I have some really good glass. However, I enjoy post-processing (I think it's half the fun), always use RAW files, and don't have a high throughput of images. So, would I be right in thinking that the lack of an AA filter would be of no particular advantage to me, and I should save my 160?
06-08-2013, 04:34 AM   #4
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There is no comparison between the images from my IIs and my Original K-5. Optical sharpness in the original image is seriously better than any electronically generated sharpness I have been able to achieve in post-processing. We've had precisely this question here many times and Adam and I just disagree on this issue.

06-08-2013, 05:05 AM   #5
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That's what I was wondering. As the AA filter blurs the image slightly, does this render it a tiny bit out of focus. As I understand it - and I am no expert - you can't put detail that has been taken out, back into the picture. So I'm really looking for some sort of assurance that my images will be sharper with a K-5 IIs than a K-5 II.
06-08-2013, 05:10 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
That's what I was wondering. As the AA filter blurs the image slightly, does this render it a tiny bit out of focus. As I understand it - and I am no expert - you can't put detail that has been taken out, back into the picture. So I'm really looking for some sort of assurance that my images will be sharper with a K-5 IIs than a K-5 II.
I posted a thread on this and the clear answer has been -Yes, the IIs produces much sharper images particularly with better glass.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-k-5/224284-k-5iis-omg.html
06-08-2013, 07:37 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
As the AA filter blurs the image slightly, does this render it a tiny bit out of focus. As I understand it - and I am no expert - you can't put detail that has been taken out, back into the picture.
That's the wrong way to think about what a Bayer-AA-filter does.

A Bayer-AA-filter is not a low-pass filter. It does not blur an image like a defocused lens would.
The "filter" is a dual-layer, bifringent crystal. Please follow the link to see a demonstration of the effect of a bifringent crystal and a post (that I did a while ago) about the advantages and perils of going filterless.

Very briefly, you can think of the Bayer-AA-filter as multiplying the image four times, exactly as needed to cover all four colour sensels of a Bayer-filter fragment. This is not unlike using a beam-splitter to then record the different colour channels separately.

Appropriate deconvolution sharpening can perfectly restore all the crispness of an image that has been captured with a Bayer-AA-filter, as long as there are no other sources of blur. This type of sharpening does not simply increase micro-contrast, but undoes the "blurring", like a motion-deblurring filter undoes the smearing of motion blur.

With respect to the presence of detail, it is not possible to record detail beyond what the sensor supports. A Bayer-Array sensor without a Bayer-AA-filter attempts to record spatial information through individual colour sensels. This only works if the source is monochrome (and you exploit that in the demosaicing process) or the colour changes in the images are not too high-frequency.

In other words, either the colour detail in the image is low enough so that a sensor with a filter can record it adequately, or it is higher and then a filterless sensor will only record spurious detail, i.e., false detail.

P.S.: I often agree with "The Doc", but if I did it this time, we'd both be wrong.
Something you must obviously avoid is to compare a K-5 II image with a K-5 IIs image, using the same sharpening parameters for both. The K-5 II needs more capture sharpening. A simple fact, but often overlooked.

Last edited by Class A; 06-08-2013 at 07:48 AM.
06-08-2013, 08:24 AM   #8
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Thank you Class A - that is a very clear explanation. I'm still not quite sure which way to go, but I'm now leaning more towards the K-5 II. It seems that for my needs (seldom making large prints and applying PP to all my final images), it would be hard to justify spending 160 extra for the IIs.

06-08-2013, 01:49 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
That's the wrong way to think about what a Bayer-AA-filter does.

A Bayer-AA-filter is not a low-pass filter. It does not blur an image like a defocused lens would.
The "filter" is a dual-layer, bifringent crystal. Please follow the link to see a demonstration of the effect of a bifringent crystal and a post (that I did a while ago) about the advantages and perils of going filterless.

Very briefly, you can think of the Bayer-AA-filter as multiplying the image four times, exactly as needed to cover all four colour sensels of a Bayer-filter fragment. This is not unlike using a beam-splitter to then record the different colour channels separately.

Appropriate deconvolution sharpening can perfectly restore all the crispness of an image that has been captured with a Bayer-AA-filter, as long as there are no other sources of blur. This type of sharpening does not simply increase micro-contrast, but undoes the "blurring", like a motion-deblurring filter undoes the smearing of motion blur.

With respect to the presence of detail, it is not possible to record detail beyond what the sensor supports. A Bayer-Array sensor without a Bayer-AA-filter attempts to record spatial information through individual colour sensels. This only works if the source is monochrome (and you exploit that in the demosaicing process) or the colour changes in the images are not too high-frequency.

In other words, either the colour detail in the image is low enough so that a sensor with a filter can record it adequately, or it is higher and then a filterless sensor will only record spurious detail, i.e., false detail.

P.S.: I often agree with "The Doc", but if I did it this time, we'd both be wrong.
Something you must obviously avoid is to compare a K-5 II image with a K-5 IIs image, using the same sharpening parameters for both. The K-5 II needs more capture sharpening. A simple fact, but often overlooked.
Sorry, all the tech "how it ought to be" explanations in the world don't alter the fact that my K-5IIs is far sharper straight out of the camera in RAW. That means I don't have to get the post-processing 'just right' to have an image from another camera that ought to be 'just as sharp' because I start with one that is. If you love post-processing and wasting hours of your life on image after image to make them as sharp as they ought to be to start with, please feel free. If you want to have images that start off that sharp, without wasting tons of time, then get a IIs.

Last edited by Docrwm; 06-08-2013 at 03:16 PM.
06-08-2013, 03:01 PM   #10
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I find the same as Doc. The proof in the pudding for me is when cropping heavily. You can drill down severely with the IIs and you will still have a sharp photo assuming you nailed the focus. Can't crop near as much with the K-5.

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06-08-2013, 03:04 PM   #11
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And here is the cropped version.

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06-09-2013, 01:03 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
If you love post-processing and wasting hours of your life on image after image to make them as sharp as they ought to be to start with, please feel free
I take your point, Doc, and I can see the advantage of having sharper RAWs straight out of the camera. I PP most of my images for retention (I don't have to do thousands), and sharpening at the end of this takes seconds. I would dearly like the K-5 IIs, but I'm trying to persuade myself that it's worth 160 for me. I know that's a subjective choice, but if the difference was merely 70 as it is in the USA, I don't think I would have a problem at all.

Oh darn it! I'll probably go for the IIs. It may not be justifiable in my case, but I've come to realise that if I don't get what I really want (not need), I'm never quite happy with it. Irrational, yes, but that's the way I have always been.

Many thanks for your help.
06-09-2013, 04:34 AM   #13
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Have you considered the current 160 GBP difference to be temporaty aberration? Maybe wait around to see if the K-5 IIs price moves down to be more aligned with the K-5 II.
06-09-2013, 05:11 AM   #14
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Yes, Ichabod, I have thought about that. The price differential started out as 150, then it narrowed to around 100, but now it's gone back up again. I guess the IIs is selling quite well vis--vis the II in the UK, which would give Pentax little incentive to lower its price just yet. As I'm happy with my K-5, notwithstanding I would like a second body, I think I shall wait till the fall and review the situation. You never know, Pentax may have given us an even better APS-C camera by that time - then I'll have another dilemma on my hands!
06-09-2013, 10:17 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
I have had my K-5 for around 18 months, and it's great, of course. However, I have been debating with myself (more chance of winning that way) getting a K-5 IIs, for the improved AF and as a second body. My dilemma is this - while the K-5 IIs is only (only?) $100 more than the K-5 II in the USA (about 70), it's 160 (around $250) more in the UK. I would readily pay 70, but I am balking at paying 160 to go AA filterless. I get pretty sharp images from my K-5 but they really need a bit of post processing to achieve the desired bite. I do a lot of landscape, so I need as much detail as possible. Would the K-5 IIs have a significant advantage, or would the K-5 II give me the same (or nearly the same) sharpness with PP?

Finally, before pulling the trigger, would I be wise to wait to see if Pentax comes out with a new, top-end APS-C in the coming months (I guess the answer to this must be pure speculation, unless someone has access to the arcane secrets of Planet Pentax)? K-5 II and IIs owners, please help - my money is burning a hole in my pocketses!
I have downloaded RAWs from Digital Cameras, Digital Camera Reviews - The Imaging Resource! (the have exceptonal set of RAWs for every camera reviewed) and tried doing a high pass over K-5 II photos to achieve similar sharpness as K-5 IIs has. I see next to no difference, seriously, even the noise does not amplify by any significant amount.

Try it yourself and see what happens. K-5 II already has weak optical filter.

Last edited by Casion; 06-11-2013 at 08:54 AM.
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