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K-7 in Malta
Posted By: ktwse, 08-03-2009, 01:52 AM

Two and a half weeks ago I posted in the Welcomes and introductions forum, having just got a K-7 with the DA 15/4 and DA 70/2.4 lenses. Two days later, I went to Malta. Spent most of our time there diving (ten out of thirteen days), but also got a chance to try the K-7 a bit. Having just the two Limited lenses with me was a treat, as they complement each other very well and lend themselves very well to both city scenes and landscapes.

I really enjoyed using the K-7, my first Pentax ever. It's very easy and intuitive to use, even to the point where I sometimes curse myself for forgetting clever things like being able to press the green button in M mode to instantly get a proper exposure setting (a very clever thing I've only seen on this camera and my compact Ricoh). Missed a few shots because I couldn't turn the shutter speed dial fast enough, but I guess I can chalk that down to learning the camera the hard way...! The P mode also seems very clever, I might actually end up using that a lot instead of relying on M which I usually do.

I have a few issues with the camera, none of which are deal breakers but things I will have to get to terms with. First of all, I have to agree with anyone stating that it produces pretty poor OOC JPGs. Compared to Nikon and Olympus (two other brands I've used), JPGs are soft and fairly muted even when cranking up saturation, sharpness etc. Fortunately, thanks to DNG, I can happily shoot RAW and still import shots into Lightroom without having to wait for an update. Too bad I realised this after the trip... I also noted that others here have commented the reds, which seems to be the one problem - while all other colours might be muted, reds seem to come out too saturated. Not much of an issue, again, just adjust the reds in camera and easily done in PP as well. Finally, both metering and AWB are not quite as reliable as I would have hoped after reading the initial PR fluff. Then again, only shooting RAW this will not be much of a problem.

What would be interesting is to hear whether others are using any specific presets for importing DNGs into LR or converting them with ACR...

Enough about the camera, a few shots... All shot as JPGs, limited PP in Lightroom. First two are with the DA 15/4, next three with the DA 70/2.4, last one with the DA 15/4.

Spinola Bay in St. Julians just before sunset.

Malta as seen from a lookout point in the old capital of Mdina. The city is closer to the West coast than the East coast, but the water that can be seen is the East coast... This is a small island...

A typical Mdina alley.

Semi-macro with the DA 70/2.4. The flowers are supposedly neriums.

Part of Mdina from the outside as seen in the late afternoon sun. Two things very symptomatic in this shot: 1. we didn't see a single cloud in our two weeks on the island; 2. it's all very yellow - buildings, rock, shrubbery, etc...!

A charming "duck's village" that I found on Manoel Island in the harbour between Sliema and Valletta.

A full set of shots here, although most of them are underwater shots not taken with the K-7.

All in all, a very nice camera that is quite intuitive to use but will require time to master for best results. For the shots above, it was clearly not the camera that was the limiting factor, but me and the limited time I had on my hands.

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08-03-2009, 02:52 AM   #2
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Beautiful imagery of this lovely island.
Congrats on your K-7 - you've already put it to great use.
Thannks for sharing your experience.
08-03-2009, 05:56 AM   #3
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Wow - very nice series. I've always wanted to go to Malta - seems like a fascinating place.

08-03-2009, 06:17 AM   #4
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Great captures - congrats on the K7.

08-03-2009, 08:56 AM   #5
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Thank you all for your nice comments.

QuoteOriginally posted by Sailor Quote
Wow - very nice series. I've always wanted to go to Malta - seems like a fascinating place.

It is certainly fascinating, but I suppose to get the most out of a visit you either need to visit a lot of museums to really get into the history of the island (prereading should help as well), or spend your time diving. The diving was great and we did enjoy Mdina a lot but to be honest, the areas around Valletta left us a bit underwhelmed, probably because we didn't have enough time to visit the museums.


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