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05-20-2013, 05:50 AM   #1
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Two years further down the road

Well after two years with my Kr I can only say that it has been quite a challenge and good fun but only after 4 trips back to the repair shop .The best results mostly on manual settings (sometimes cross referenced with auto settings that have been poor) have been excellent. The weaker points seem to be very low and in the uk artificial lighting mainly old tungsten even after manual adjustment. Macro however has been very rewarding. Using old glass lenses has also brought back some tremendous results but only after playing with focal length settings. I would be interested to know how many others have changed their views (no pun intended) from grumble to praise or have jumped ship.If i was asked if someone should buy one second hand then if the price was right the answer is yes, is the K30 better? or are most faults put down to operators ignorance /camera shake.

05-20-2013, 06:22 AM - 1 Like   #2
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My first DSLR was a K-r. I still have it, never had to take it back, even though the built-in flash doesn't work anymore (don't know why). At first, the camera offered more than I could get out of it, but now I know it pretty well. So the question is, what is more important - skill or tools? Because sometimes people complement my photos by saying "you must have a great camera!" But its not just the camera. The photographer is the most important, knowledge and experience, and even creativity. With the same camera I took great photos and really poor photos.
On the other hand, after I got a K-01, I noticed that my photos do look better, because it has a better sensor. So I guess the camera is important, too.

To summarize, once you have beaten your ignorance, once you have some knowledge and skills and experience, then it makes sense to get a better camera, so you can get the most out of it. I think the K-r is a great low to mid tier DSLR, especially for learning how to use DSLRs. But technology just keeps improving so a newer camera will allow you to take better photos, simply by recording more data, by having better noise performance, etc.
But on these forums we often get people who blame their gear for everything, and then it turns out that actually they are just using it wrong.
05-20-2013, 06:22 AM   #3
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I never warmed to my K-r. I kept my K-x instead and only let it go when I had the K-5 + K-01. I get much more consistent results from the K-01 than ever the K-r - and the K-r was used primarily outside so I never really contended with Tungsten issues. From what Heie has been writing the K-30 is a much superior camera in every way and rivals the K-5 in many respects.
05-20-2013, 07:14 AM   #4
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Na Horuk puts some very good thoughts there. My entry to the Pentax world was the K20D, what a lovely camera (still)! As my friend bought the K-x I was simply blown away by it's high ISO performance. Since K-x lacks the visible focusing points in the viewfinder I waited for the K-r. I also got the K-30. I use all three cameras, each of them has it's own special character and field of use.

K20D goes for studio people shots. With the grip it has the perfect usability & size and the old Samsung imager gives me good skin tones (better than the new Canon).

K-r goes for low-light and also for close-up. It has a nicely discrete form factor and (with a Limited prime) it is great for street photography. The Sony imager delivers excellent DR.

K-30 goes for action and sports. It has the best AF (of my 3) and it is overall fastest and most reliable when it comes to shoot fast action. Gives most amazing DR right out the camera.

Last edited by dragra; 05-20-2013 at 07:19 AM.
05-20-2013, 09:22 AM   #5
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I had to send my K-r in for focus tuning. I had to adjust many of my lenses to -10, after that it worked great. I look back at the photos and I only see my mistakes, not the camera's. Still, I took some great photos with it of my kids that I will cherish.
05-20-2013, 03:34 PM   #6
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I did just sell my K-r, but did so with absolutely no ill feelings. I had a opportunity to purchase a used K-30 with the 18-135 that I just couldn't pass up. But good deal or not, I had to sell the K-r to close the budget gap. I would have otherwise kept my K-r.
05-20-2013, 04:37 PM   #7
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@p30man: I had my K-r for about two year until I had to send it in to repair. It's now my backup since I couldn't pass up on a K-30 deal. Been using my K-30 for about 2 months now and I am really happy with it. For me, the build (WR, viewfinder and grip), focus peaking, TAV mode, Live view makes it a better camera for me. Can't say I miss my K-r, it's good to have as a backup but I am very happy to use my K-30. And to be honest, I would trade my K-r for a used K-01 any time
05-20-2013, 06:13 PM - 1 Like   #8
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I'm getting close to year 3 with my Kr and it still surprises me with what it (and myself ) are capable of. Granted, my experience with DSLR's was very limited to begin with, and this is my first SLR, but I could not ask for a better beginner camera that packs so much in it. Sent it for e-dial warranty once, that's my only gripe. Oh, and my FA LTD's FF in tungsten, but my other lenses are fine for some reason.

I will replace this Kr with a K5IV or whatever the flavour will be, but the Kr is a keeper. Perfect for walking the streets with a 43 Ltd.

Can I recommend a used/old stock Kr? Yes and no. Locally I have seen them for 300-400$... I would say save some $ and get a used K30 in blue

05-21-2013, 02:01 AM   #9
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I "just" got my K30 a few weeks back after selling my Kr for a fair price.. Had to top up just a tiny bit to get a Red K30 kit.

One thing i missed about the Kr is the DoF preview coz it's different from the rest of the current body; by pressing and holding down the DoF preview button, the Kr actually shows the reading at the bottom and then you can make adjustment via the rear wheel. Very useful for manual lenses.

The current body, including the K30, only allows one-time stop down metering reading and then you would have to do your adjustment.. If you just hold down the DoF preview button, it doesn't show any reading and you can't do any changes at all....

So much for Pentax saying "backward compatibility" with it's K mount... Seems like they are ever so slowly crippling them out silently..
Sooner or later, looks like Pentax advantage in being "backward compatible" with all K mount lens will be lost to the mirrorless era; m4/3,Sony,Fuji, etc..

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