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06-25-2013, 11:00 AM   #1
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K5 II (s) or hold out...

first off, let me say "howdy" from Texas- 2nd post here, first in here (K5).

now...

I've always liked Pentax cameras back from my film days (M42 Spotmatic) and up into my digital days (k10d, (samsung) gx10, k20d and recently a Q!)

a few years back i switched to m4/3 as i had branched into 4/3 with an Oly e-330. I really wanted a k7, but couldnt justify the (re)purchase of a whole new system.

so here i am, contemplating selling or trading all my m4/3 gear to fund another Pentax foray. I really want a K-5 IIs and some quality glass. Should i wait for the next iteration? The rumored FF Pentax? Im out of the loop of the Pentax Nation, so some advice is in order.

1. do i wait?
2. II or IIs? price difference is irrelevant
3. i prefer a FAST 50- my fave lens is my 25/1.4- whats comparable these days?
4. lens recommendations in the range of 28/50/75 please!
5. is there a preferred battery grip?

thanks in advance for all of the help...now im off to the buy/sell forum to put all my stuff up!

06-25-2013, 12:07 PM - 1 Like   #2
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Hi Brandon,
I am a K-5 II owner and very happy with it. As to how long you would have to wait for the next generation of Pentax, only Pentax knows. Personally I if I knew for sure I wanted a Pentax, I would get the best they had to offer now.

As to FF, that is personal. I came from using a Canon FF and really liked the picture quality that FF gives, but it is with a price. I carry my gear all over. A FF camera body is larger, heavier and the lens that go with it are larger, heavier and not to mention pricier. If you try cheaper lens, the quality of the finished product shows up more with FF. I decided to leave FF and started researching for a crop sensor camera, or one of the new mirror-less cameras. I could have stayed with a Canon crop camera and still use my L lens & other FF lens that I had lots of money into. But after doing all my research I decided that for me Pentax seem like the best path to follow. I sold all my Canon gear and made the jump to Pentax.

That's my story, now you can write yours. Also, while photography is one of main hobbies, it is just a hobby I enjoy. I am not a professional, but I always try to learn and make the final product the best that I can.
06-25-2013, 12:18 PM   #3
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Hi,

If I were you, I would wait a few months to see what rumored K-3 (?) would look like and then decide. The prices for K-5II(s) will certainly get lower at that point. I'm holding off my urge for K-5IIs because don't want to feel sorry of not waiting a a couple of months.
06-25-2013, 12:38 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Brandonsarkis Quote

1. do i wait?
2. II or IIs? price difference is irrelevant
3. i prefer a FAST 50- my fave lens is my 25/1.4- whats comparable these days?
4. lens recommendations in the range of 28/50/75 please!
5. is there a preferred battery grip?
1.) Since I already have a couple of K-5 classics I have chosen to wait. If I was on an older body I would have gone with one of the K5II variants by now.
If you always have to have the latest and greatest then you should wait.
If you aren't bothered with not having the latest model then go for it.
I expect we will see a new APSC model by end of year for the Christmas season if Pentax Ricoh cares about those seasonal things.

2.) IIs unless you shoot a lot of things with repeating patterns such as fashion or buildings that will cause moire.
The difference in sharpness without the filter in samples displayed have been quite amazing.

3.) DA*55 1.4 or FA50 1.4 or DAL 50 1.8 - see the lens reviews for deeper info. You said fast fifty but mention a 25? are you looking for something wider?

4.) FA 31 LTD, see above, FA 77 LTD

5.) I would only use the Pentax original grip D-BG4

06-25-2013, 12:41 PM   #5
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Welcome! I'll put in my 2˘, but, like Wingincamera, I'm just a hobbyist, not a professional.

QuoteOriginally posted by Brandonsarkis Quote
1. do i wait?
Only if you want full-frame. Pentax has only said that the future full frame is real, and they're working on it, but they have given no indication whatsoever that it will happen soon. If you're happy with APS-C, get the K-5 IIs now. I have one, and I love it. I have a hard time imagining how it could be better.

QuoteOriginally posted by Brandonsarkis Quote
2. II or IIs? price difference is irrelevant
I've never heard a K-5 IIs owner say they wish they had gotten the regular II. You might here from a few people telling you why they didn't buy one, though. I will only say this: the IQ bump is small, but the risk of moiré is miniscule.

QuoteOriginally posted by Brandonsarkis Quote
3. i prefer a FAST 50- my fave lens is my 25/1.4- whats comparable these days?
I have a Sigma 30mm f/1.4 DC. It's been my most-used lens ever since I got it. I absolutely love it. Some people hate it. Sadly, Sigma has discontinued it in favor of a newer model which is not available for Pentax. You can still find one used, though.

QuoteOriginally posted by Brandonsarkis Quote
4. lens recommendations in the range of 28/50/75 please!
I assume you're talking about "equivalent" focal lengths? For the 28mm range, this is a little wide, but you'll see people raving about the DA 15mm Limited here. It's tiny and nearly immune to flare. I don't have it. I got the Samyang 14mm instead, since it's nearly half the price, but it's very big and somewhat vulnerable to flare.

For 75mm (equivalent), I use a Pentax A 50mm f/1.2, but those are difficult to find and expensive. I've heard great things about the 50mm f/1.7. It's praised as a very good lens for the price. You can find the older, manual versions for cheap. There is an autofocus version (F 50mm f/1.7), but it's difficult to find, and not that much cheaper than the FA 50 f/1.4, which is also autofocus, and has the benefit of still being in production.

QuoteOriginally posted by Brandonsarkis Quote
5. is there a preferred battery grip?
Only the official Pentax one, the D-BG4.

Last edited by scratchpaddy; 06-25-2013 at 04:42 PM. Reason: fixed dyslexic battery grip model name
06-25-2013, 12:42 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by crewl1 Quote
You said fast fifty but mention a 25? are you looking for something wider?
25mm is 50mm equivalent on micro 4/3.
06-25-2013, 12:47 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by scratchpaddy Quote
25mm is 50mm equivalent on micro 4/3.
Ahh I see, gracias. I don't speak MFT (yet)
06-25-2013, 01:21 PM   #8
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I would consider the 43mm as well. It is pretty fast and I think gives you a unique field of view. I have owned it and I sold it to buy the DA* 55mm f1.4 - don't get me wrong, I like the 55mm a lot, but I miss the 43. I imagine I will eventually pick it up again.

Also, are your lens recommendation requests (28/50/75) accounting for APS-C or are those 35mm focal lengths you'd like to fill? The suggestions would change depending.

06-25-2013, 02:18 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by scratchpaddy Quote

I've never heard a K-5 IIs owner say they wish they had gotten the regular II. You might here from a few people telling you why they didn't buy one, though. I will only say this: the IQ bump is small, but the risk of moiré is miniscule.
He had both version in his care for a couple of weeks and he would have gone for the normal version by what i read.
When he went on a family trip to Tokyo he actually took the normal version with him instead of teh s version.

Pentax K-5 IIs Camera - Review

QuoteQuote:
With the Pentax K-5 IIs, moiré problems may not have struck for me quite as often as I had been worried that they might, but at the same time, the difference in sharpness was also rather more slight than I was expecting. Yes, when viewed at 1:1 the K-5 IIs clearly has an advantage over the K-5 II in per-pixel sharpness, but it's not a difference you're going to notice unless you're looking at your images very closely. Even then, a touch of unsharp masking on both images will often leave the K-5 II's result near-indistinguishable from that shot with the K-5 IIs.

For some purposes, that little extra sharpness might be worthwhile, but for my money it's simply not worth the risk of a hard-to-remove artifact in a once-in-a-lifetime shot. The slight reduction in sharpness is one I'm willing to make, for the peace of mind it brings.

If you know your subjects won't be prone to moiré, you have the ability to control the situation to avoid it, the patience to repair it when it does show up, or you have an absolute need for a camera without an antialiasing filter*, then the Pentax K-5 IIs should prove very interesting.
06-25-2013, 03:22 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Brandonsarkis Quote
first off, let me say "howdy" from Texas- 2nd post here, first in here (K5).

now...

I've always liked Pentax cameras back from my film days (M42 Spotmatic) and up into my digital days (k10d, (samsung) gx10, k20d and recently a Q!)

a few years back i switched to m4/3 as i had branched into 4/3 with an Oly e-330. I really wanted a k7, but couldnt justify the (re)purchase of a whole new system.

so here i am, contemplating selling or trading all my m4/3 gear to fund another Pentax foray. I really want a K-5 IIs and some quality glass. Should i wait for the next iteration? The rumored FF Pentax? Im out of the loop of the Pentax Nation, so some advice is in order.

1. do i wait?
2. II or IIs? price difference is irrelevant
3. i prefer a FAST 50- my fave lens is my 25/1.4- whats comparable these days?
4. lens recommendations in the range of 28/50/75 please!
5. is there a preferred battery grip?

thanks in advance for all of the help...now im off to the buy/sell forum to put all my stuff up!
1 - even though I had a k5 (I still have it) I chose to get the k5iis - I needed the focusing system that's rated down to -3EV for some social things I do where light is usually lacking. The prices of the k5ii(s) have fallen quite a bit lately so there's some savings to get it now. If a new body is released, no question it will have some improvements (what that will be of course is debatable and unknown), but if you're happy with the current package, the sooner you make the switch, the more images you'll be able to use the new gear with.

2- I chose to get the AA-less model because the extra sharpness sounded appealing and it has not disappointed - it's considerably sharper with less PP time to get the result. Also less noise since I don't have to add sharpness to high iso images...

3 - the primes listed are all good choices. Another to consider is the DA21 f3.2 - it's a small package that's great for street shots or inside work where the rooms are a bit tight. It's not terribly fast, but the high iso capability of the k5 family is really good.

Of course there are zooms also to choose from. I've been using the DA*16-50 f2.8 lately and I am continually impressed with it's sharpness and build quality. This lens is weather sealed and is known to take a fair amount of abuse. There were a lot of motor failures early on (it seems to have diminished the last few years) so it's not risk free... Another fast zoom that's highly regarded is the Tamron 17-50 f2.8. A lot less $$ but not weather sealed and uses screw drive which can be an annoyance for some (not me).

The new Sigma 18-35 f1.8 is getting a lot of people in a tizzy and the reviews that are out are fanning the flames.

4- if you want primes, the DA15 f4, DA21 f3.2, DA35 f2.8 macro, FA31 1.8, FA43 1.9, FA50 1.4, F50 1.7, DA* 55 1.4, FA77 1.8, FDA 100 2.8 WR are amongst my favorite AF lenses. If you are ok w/ manual focus, there are quite a few gems out there like the k50 1.2, cosina 55 1.2, voightlander 58 1.4, rokinon 14 2.8, rokinon 85 1.4 etc etc

if you want zooms, the DA* 16-50 and DA* 50-135 or Sigma 50-150 hsm are my favorites. I also like the Tamron 28-75 2.8. If you want longer, the DA* 60-250 is awesome and the Sigma 70-200 and Tamron 70-200 are highly regarded too. And don't forget about the superwides - the Sigma 8-16 is awesome as is the Pentax 12-24 which can take filters unlike the 8-16. Another good one is the Sigma 10-20 non fixed aperture model. If you want more, make sure your chiropractor says your back can handle it

Personally I travel w/ a combo of zooms and primes - my vacation kit is the Sig 8-16, pent 16-50, da55-300, and a macro prime and a fast prime. Sometimes more or less depending on where I'm going... I also bring a Pentax Q for extreme telephoto (5.5 crop factor) or when I want a super small kit that doesn't need to do mid/high iso.

5 - the pentax grip will maintain WR and the switchgear is of higher quality.

Good luck!
06-25-2013, 05:06 PM   #11
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If I were going to take something away from this thread - a summary statement of sorts - I'd conclude that pentax cameras are excellent and that for a person interested in focal lengths under 100mm, there are many many choices. If It was me, and I was going to buy a new prime kit built around the k5 iis (which is what I'd pick)... 21mm + 43mm + 77mm + 100mm Macro. Alternately, I might build a wider kit around the 15mm + 31mm + 70mm + 100mm Macro. Cost would come out about the same (I think...).
06-26-2013, 06:22 AM   #12
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Hi, I was a Yellowstone NP last week and ran into a guy from Texas with a Spotmatic strapped around his neck. As I started with a Mamaya/Sekor 500 DTL and then Spotmatic II we had a chat while waiting in line to order lunch. Last year I got a K5 and this year recently purchased a K5-IIs. I stuck with Pentax for the simple reason that I have a 40+ year collection of Pentax mount lenses. in fact I only have 1 auto focus lens. A recently purchased 12-24mm Pentax DA zoom. That was to cover a gap left when I went with the K5/ K5-IIs system. It has been a great lens for me.

I have had good results using everything from screw mount lenses on up. My 55mm f1.8 SMC screw mount lens is awesome on my K5-IIs. As good as just about anything out there today and better than most. The only real problem I had at Yellowstone was with focus confirmation. This cost me a few shots. It seems that the thermal features seem to effect auto focus a bit. Luckily I have added Katzeye focusing screens to my K5 and K5-IIs. Big fan of micro prism focusing. I only wish they had a 45 degree angle split screen instead of horizontal.

If you don't want to wait, go K5-II or K5-IIs and get good regular lenses. That way you are all set to go full frame by getting a body only. And you still have an awesome backup camera. I got the K5-IIs before our trip out west because I wanted a little better resolution plus the old premise that two is one and one is none.
06-26-2013, 06:41 AM   #13
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I've seen a couple FA 50 1.4s on ebay recently...there seem to be a few around.
I currently have a K-5 (and a K-01 and K-x) an I haven't been at all tempted to upgrade.

Here's a picture I took 2 days ago, hand held in a breeze... 400 ISO



Here is a pixel peeper image...



The scale of this given a screen size of 92 dpi would be approximately 53 inches wide. I don't have a screen big enough to display the whole image at this resolution.

So it might look a little better with a K-5II and possibly a bit better with a K-5 IIs, in pixel peep mode... but I don't do that when I view my images. To, me, the K-5 is amazing. The K-5II has better low light focusing and locks the image faster in auto-focus.. I'm not saying it doesn't have advantages, but not enough for me to spend 1K to get it. Actually it would be 2K, two shooters in the family.

The K-5 is a great 16 MP camera. Maybe for you it's different. My problem is I have a "House Appropriations committee" I need to be able to demonstrate why I need a new camera. So far, I haven't been able to justify why I would need a D800, forget about a K-5IIs. But, everyone is different. As long as the gear I've got gives me the pictures I want, I'm a happy dude. Knowing there is better out there, doesn't bother me.
06-26-2013, 06:47 AM   #14
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1: I used to own two K-5's, but jumped on the K-5 IIs as soon as it was released. It is a much better camera for my needs, which includes frequent live music coverage for a prominent Australian website. AF accuracy is much better, and the improved sharpness is clear.
Waiting for something which might not happen for some time seems a bit pointless.

2: IIs. Moire is very rarely an issue, and I have seen it as often with my remaining K-5 as I have with my K-5 IIs, despite using the latter five times more often since I got it.

3: Fast APS-C normal = FA31 in my book. The Sigma 30/1.4 may be worth considering, but I don't think it's a contest from what I have seen.

4: FA31, DA*55, FA77, unless you're talking about full frame equivalents, where I'd recommend DA21, FA31 and DA*55. Hang on: not much different....

5: Pentax D-BG4. None of the third party grips maintain weather resistance.
06-26-2013, 06:49 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by vagrant10 Quote
1 - even though I had a k5 (I still have it) I chose to get the k5iis - I needed the focusing system that's rated down to -3EV for some social things I do where light is usually lacking.
Did the K5-II AF improvement for low light events come through for you? I've been considering the -II for the same reason.

Apologies for hijacking the thread.

Regards,
--Anders.
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