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12-28-2010, 10:22 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by ukwoody Quote
Good morning from a wet and windy Wales.
I curently have a fuji s100fs superzoom, which I adore, however I feel I want more out of the camera. I'm considering upgrading to a dslr and after considerable reserch the K-R seems very appealing,with its fast af and good image quality, however I have a couple of concerns, and would appreciate your help and advice.

I particularly enjoy and want to take wildlife pictures- especially bird shots. Would the infamous "shutter clunk" and reported lens focussing whirring be an issue here? I often get close to the subject.

I gather the range of lenses available is smaller than say canon etc, but does that apply to 3rd party lenses too? If I wanted say a 400mm prime (if I ever win the lottery,) could that be an issue?

My current lens is about the same size as a standard zoom, and it coupled with a 2/3" (8.8 x6.6mm) 11.1MP CCD sensor. Am I really going to benefit from going to the larger sensor especially for cropping a pic?

Last one (sorry guys), I will possibly go for the 55 -300mm kit lens that comes with it. I have read some comments that the IS/VR - what ever pentax call it) isnt very good at the longer distances and some blurring occurs when handholding. Is that right? It seems a bit odd when many of todays cams seem to cope very well.

Many thanks in advance for your help, I look forward to your comments!
Regards
Woody

I have the K-5 and a whack of longer glass, but my wife has the K-r. The K-r has more shutter noise than the K-5 but it is still fairly quiet and should be fine for birding.

55-300 should be a good starting lens. If you don't mind manual focus, there are a number of older lenses to choose from. Some are outrageously expensive but others, like the K400 are reasonable. You can check the lens review section on the forum or the 300+ lens club https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/55946-300mm-pl...lenses-83.html

Regarding the sensor, the extra resolution will help, but more importantly, the quality of high ISO from the K-r will help when birding. Birds move constantly, and longer lenses tend to be slower, so cranking up the ISO for a faster shutter speed, while still retaining detail will really help you.

Let us know how you make out.

EDIT: - I just saw your post regarding the 55-300 not being part of the kit. Any idea what the price difference would be when buying the K-r body and a 55-300 separately (DA version not the DA L)? I don't live in your area but perhaps someone else here on the forum could provide some advice on where the best place is for service and price?


Last edited by SteveM; 12-28-2010 at 10:40 AM.
12-28-2010, 10:48 AM   #17
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Hi smc, thanks for your detailed reply and the great links.
Regarding the additional cost, it seems I have to buy it with the 18-55, no body only option (but thats no bad thing really). Costwise, body and 18-55 about £500, with the 55-200 as well about £590. The DA 55-300 is about £300 on it's own. There is at the moment also an additional £70 rebate available for cam with lens kit.
woody

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12-28-2010, 12:58 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by ukwoody Quote
THanks guys, two things
What exactly IS bracketing and why do you feel it is so important, please?
Sadly the dal55-300 doesn't seem to be part of the offer in the UK, only the 18-55 and dal 50-200 and that lens isn't fetching much on flea bay s/h.

woody
Hi Woody,
bracketing consists of , when you feel that correct exposure will be hard to find, instruct the camera to take either 3 shots - one with "normal" exposure, one overexposed, one underexposed, or 5 shots, 2 overexposed, 2 underexposed; the degree of over/under exposure can be chosen; from 0.3 EV to 2 or 3 EV; on top of that you can also apply exposure compensation;
for instance you choose 3 shots with 0.5 EV bracketing, you got normal exposure, -0.5 EV exposure, + 0.5 EV exposure; if you choose 1 EV bracketing, with 1 EV shift, you got normal exposure, -1EV underexposure, -2 EV underexposure. For the example of the white egret above, the immaculate white bird vs a dark brown background is a really challenge for the exposure system. Either you can use spot metering - with mixed results anyway - or better use bracketing to be sure that you will have an image that will not cut the highlights - the white bird here - and preserve details on the white part of the image, at the expense of the background - which has stricly no interest here; that's why I have applied a 3 image bracketing with -1 EV and -1 EV shift, resulting 3 different images; I have kept the one where lightroom - or the camera itself - does not show overexposure on the bird.
By the way, if you want to buy a combo, there is a dual kit with 18-55 and 55-300 here :
Pentax NUMIPIXEL , vente de matériel photo
838 euros, 4 years warranty and 80 euros cashback
Regards
12-28-2010, 11:15 PM   #19
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I'm not sure what your thoughts are on the K-x? The ebay store Prodigital2000 has one with the 18-55 and 55-300 lenses for $659 CAN and they will ship worldwide. You might get stuck paying duty / taxes though. You can also phone them directly to see how much the same kit lens would be with the K-r.

This is my wife's shot from today using her K-r. Now she was using a DA*50-135 which is different from what you are looking for currently, but I think it's representative of what you should expect from a K-r or K-x.....




Last edited by SteveM; 12-29-2010 at 12:14 AM.
12-29-2010, 04:33 AM   #20
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I want to comment on the 55-300mm pentax zoom. I was shooting birds and a friend came up with the ?-400mm zoom for sony. And i can tell you my 55-300mm Pentax had it beat hands down. I don't use it much but it is a very good lens. IMO. Also the k-x is a superb camera for wildlife. If I had the K-x sensor in a k-7 body I would be in heaven. Instead of quality Pentax is caught up in the MP nonsense.

goubejp, do you have a link to your bird pics. I would love to see them.

Last edited by garyk; 12-29-2010 at 04:58 AM.
12-29-2010, 06:27 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by garyk Quote
I want to comment on the 55-300mm pentax zoom. I was shooting birds and a friend came up with the ?-400mm zoom for sony. And i can tell you my 55-300mm Pentax had it beat hands down. I don't use it much but it is a very good lens. IMO. Also the k-x is a superb camera for wildlife. If I had the K-x sensor in a k-7 body I would be in heaven. Instead of quality Pentax is caught up in the MP nonsense.

goubejp, do you have a link to your bird pics. I would love to see them.
Thank you for your comment, unfortunately I have not yet build a website with my bird pictures; lack of time... may be I can ask my children to build it May be this year
Regards
12-29-2010, 04:03 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by garyk Quote
If I had the K-x sensor in a k-7 body I would be in heaven. Instead of quality Pentax is caught up in the MP nonsense.
I would disagree with that statement, Pentax is not just caught up in the MP nonsense, the K5 has better high-ISO result than K7 even though it offers more resolution. I would say that the K7 was an exception in the Pentax line-up, it had 14MP, same as K20d but worse noise, almost all other cameras have been constantly improving high-ISO performance over their previous one. I bought the K100D, then K10D, then K20D but I didn't bother with K7 because of the pathetic high-ISO performance. The K20D probably wasn't as good as 6MP sensors were, but the new 16MP sensor in K5 has produced amazing results and Pentax has gotten the best out of it, arguably better than the D7000.
12-29-2010, 06:55 PM   #23
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Optically, I agree that the 55-300mm is brilliant. Best tele I have had. However I find the zoom speed is slow.

With respect to the 50-200mm, it is a better lens than people give it credit for. However, unless you are much closer, it won't give you the magnification I think you will need for birding.

As for the K-7, 100-800 it is very good. 800-1600 you have to be careful to expose correctly, and I agree it loses a stop to the K-x in terms of noise. However if you are prepared to shoot raw it is a good option.

Good call about the D3100 and bracketing. I didn't know that. I would advise bracketing, although I tend to use spot or centre-weight metering and trust the camera myself. Pity, as both of the lenses I mentioned are also good.

Last piece of advice for the OP is to look here on the forum marketplace for a tele. There was a 55-300mm (not L) that went for $250 US in the last week.

01-02-2011, 09:19 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by garyk Quote
If I had the K-x sensor in a k-7 body I would be in heaven.
absolutely
Pentax should make K7 Mark II with the K-x sensor
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