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11-26-2011, 01:09 PM   #1
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How good is the K-r?

I need some advice please! I want to replace/upgrade my K-m, which is getting a bit worn round the edges, with a new K-r or K5. I would prefer to buy the K5 but my budget may not stretch that far. So I have a choice of buying the K-r at a price which I can afford or splashing out on a K5 at a price that I can barely afford. Having read reviews of both, and comments posted on the forum, I'm leaning toward the K-r but one thing does bother me - the focussing issues under tungsten light. Until recently this wouldn't have concerned me (I take mostly outdoor shots), but I am taking more and more shots at local indoor events under artificial lighting. So the advice I need is this; from those of you who know about these things, is FF issue with the K-r still an issue, would it still be an issue on a new K-r? If it makes any difference, I'll be mainly using the Pentax 35mm F2 FA and Tokina AT-X Pro 28-70 lenses. Any help gratefully received! Thanks.

11-26-2011, 01:34 PM   #2
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the tungsten focus issue really only effects you if you use bigger apertures like f2 and lower.

For indoor shots setting the AWB to tungesten helps fix the FF issue.
11-26-2011, 03:07 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by doops Quote
... but I am taking more and more shots at local indoor events under artificial lighting. ...
What sort of events? If the lighting is bright you will likely be okay with the K-r. Bright lighting helps focus and also lets you stop the lens down for more depth of field.

My experience with my K-r under tungsten/incandescent light is that the closer I'm focusing the more likely I am to get a missed autofocus. Dark museums are challenging for any consumer camera but I'm not bothered by having to manually focus in tricky lighting. Adding to what mpmetro wrote (setting AWB to tungsten helps), using live view can improve tungsten autofocus.

I am very happy with my K-r overall. (Yes, I'm annoyed by Pentax USA's poor response to focus concerns I've discussed with them, but it hasn't limited my use of the camera and I'm not trying to revive this debate.)
11-26-2011, 03:39 PM   #4
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I'm in the same boat, wanting to K-5, but only being able to afford the K-R. However, I did find out that you can buy a used K-5 for around the same price as a new K-R!

Hope this helps.

11-26-2011, 03:44 PM   #5
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the contrast detect AF (which has no FF issues) is pretty fast in the K-r. I used a canon t2i at a store, and it was even slower (almost as slow as the k-x)
11-26-2011, 03:51 PM   #6
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Apart from some FF issues, I've heard nothing but great things about the K-R.
11-26-2011, 04:52 PM   #7
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I upgraded from the Km, very happy with my KR

Hans
11-26-2011, 05:20 PM   #8
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Being my first dSLR, I'm pretty happy. I wish it had weather sealing. Overall, I really love this camera.
My K5 is in transit. Before the end of next week, I will have a Kr and a K5.

-Allan

11-27-2011, 07:06 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by DeadJohn Quote
What sort of events? If the lighting is bright you will likely be okay with the K-r. Bright lighting helps focus and also lets you stop the lens down for more depth of field.

My experience with my K-r under tungsten/incandescent light is that the closer I'm focusing the more likely I am to get a missed autofocus. Dark museums are challenging for any consumer camera but I'm not bothered by having to manually focus in tricky lighting. Adding to what mpmetro wrote (setting AWB to tungsten helps), using live view can improve tungsten autofocus.

I am very happy with my K-r overall. (Yes, I'm annoyed by Pentax USA's poor response to focus concerns I've discussed with them, but it hasn't limited my use of the camera and I'm not trying to revive this debate.)
I've found that when I'm shooting in low light and the camera will not focus if I switch the focus program to Auto 5 and recompose if necessary, the camera seems to catch a decent focus in lower light.

This isn't a tested solution it's just my observation playing with the camera in low light over the few weeks.
11-27-2011, 07:49 AM   #10
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advanced beginner opnion

I have owned the k-x, k-r and now the k-5. I am no expert, but i have owned 5 dslr cameras, and have owned or tried 20 or so high end point and shoots with mega zooms so i know a little bout cameras. i dont know how advanced you are as far as photography experience goes but if i had to go out doors and wanted great photos id go with the k-r and here is my reasoning.... I purchased the k-5 with great expectations from all i have read about the camera! i have yet not been able to get as sharp a photos in general as i have with the k-r. ( maybe ya have to be more experienced with high end dslr's) I am returning my k-5 and exchanging it for a new one incase i may have a bad one.
I have gotten a few great photos in my opinion from the k-5 after taking bout 500+ photos. I can take the k-r out and get 400 great photos from the k-r in the same amount of shots. One of the things i would like on the k-5 is auto setting for say, sports, landscape etc which the k-r has.
11-27-2011, 09:16 AM   #11
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I am a very happy KR user. I got the twin lens kit and couldn't have been happier.
11-27-2011, 11:44 AM   #12
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Original Poster
Many thanks to all of you who took the time to reply and give advice. The events I'm talking about are services at our local church, the lighting on the speaker and the 'choir' (band and singers) on stage is pretty good so it sounds as though I might be ok with the K-r, especially if I change the white balance to tungsten.

I have thought about going for a used K5 but I've been looking for the last few months and here in the UK I have seen only a couple come on to the market in that time (perhaps I'm looking in the wrong places! - I don't check ebay) and they went pretty quickly.

I think I'll go for the K-r now and start saving for a K5 (or its successor!).....
11-27-2011, 01:13 PM   #13
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Quick tip on WB for artificial light and the K-r ff issue: You should be able to work around it by using any manual WB setting, not just the tungsten preset. It's the AWB setting that causes the issue for some people (haven't had problems with mine, but I've only shot indoors a handful of times).
11-27-2011, 08:11 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by doops Quote
Many thanks to all of you who took the time to reply and give advice. The events I'm talking about are services at our local church, the lighting on the speaker and the 'choir' (band and singers) on stage is pretty good so it sounds as though I might be ok with the K-r, especially if I change the white balance to tungsten.

I have thought about going for a used K5 but I've been looking for the last few months and here in the UK I have seen only a couple come on to the market in that time (perhaps I'm looking in the wrong places! - I don't check ebay) and they went pretty quickly.

I think I'll go for the K-r now and start saving for a K5 (or its successor!).....
Church services lead me to another distinction between the K5 and K-r:

The K-r shutter makes a noticeable click with each photo, not excessively loud but it may be distracting to take photos during quiet portions of services. The shutter sound is on par with most other DSLRs I've heard. I think the K5 is significantly quieter but I only did a brief test on year ago before buying the K-r. So, what is more of a bonus if you pick the K5 rather than a complaint about the K-r.

For video, the K-r is silent except for a momentary click when you start and end filming.
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