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11-15-2018, 03:16 PM - 1 Like   #1
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Definition, entry level camera

If the K-70 is an entry level camera then the next step up may be too much for me. OK, I am being a bit sarcastic but what i would like to know if there are attributes that define an entry level camera or is it a marketing term? Me thinks price rather than quality is the definition as all the experts say what is important is glass, glass, and glass. I can easily accept that. YET, I see analogy to wine snobbery. Perhaps my eyesight is a common as my palate.

11-15-2018, 03:36 PM - 4 Likes   #2
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Things vary by manufacturer. In Pentax the definition of Entry vs Mid vs. Semi-Pro has evolved over time. Early days - entry models had Pentamirrors and not Pentaprisms. Later they gained Pentaprisms but they didn't have Weather Resistance. The K-500 I think is the last entry level model to lack WR. The Pro models have always had the most features and the nicest ergonomics. The Pro models mostly have had battery grips available. The pro models have mostly used the larger battery in the main chassis and the grip. Top LCD for a while was available on all models (K100D for example) later this became a higher end feature vanishing from cameras like the K-30/K-50/K-500 etc.

Nikon and Canon have had lower end bodies that lack major features. For example on Nikon the legacy lens support is tied in part to the class of the model. The high end bodies have screw drive and work with older lenses better. The low end bodies do not. They require lenses with motors in them. This trend of feature deprivation at the bottom of the ladder is one of the things that sets Pentax apart because they typically do not participate in this except where hardware differences might exist. Put another way - there are not arbitrary features withheld in the firmware due to the camera being lower end. The features that are withheld tend to be simply where hardware investment would be higher (buffer size, shutter longevity, top lcd, 2nd card slot, etc. )

What do you get as you go up in the lineup? Innovation? Better seals? Not sure... but you do get a quieter shutter. You typically get a longer lifetime rated shutter as well. You also (since the K-3) get dual card slots in the top end models. You also used to be able to count on P-TTL mastering from the onboard flash but the K3-II and K-1 removed the flash. Bigger buffer, and faster continuous shooting has been commonly part of the upper end bodies. At one time the number of bits of the RAW files were different with low end bodies being 12bit and high end being 14bit but again Pentax has leveled the field and low and high now enjoy 14bit. AA filtering removal was once a high end feature, today it is part of the sensor IBIS system. Ultrasonic dust removal I think is still left for the upper or at least mid level bodies.

Sorry this seems a bit of chaotic mess but I hope it is somewhat helpful...
11-15-2018, 03:45 PM   #3
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the forum's comparison tool lists 4 categories

entry K - S1. K 500, K r

weather sealed K 70, K S2, K 50

advanced K 3, K 3 II and K 5II

Professional K 1, K 1 II ( presumably ) 645Z and 645 D

Pentax K-1 II vs. Pentax KP vs. Pentax K-70 - Pentax Camera Comparison - PentaxForums.com

perhaps one could see what each class has in common?
11-15-2018, 04:01 PM - 2 Likes   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by gump Quote
If the K-70 is an entry level camera then the next step up may be too much for me. OK, I am being a bit sarcastic but what i would like to know if there are attributes that define an entry level camera or is it a marketing term? Me thinks price rather than quality is the definition as all the experts say what is important is glass, glass, and glass. I can easily accept that. YET, I see analogy to wine snobbery. Perhaps my eyesight is a common as my palate.
I think the Financial Times' definition works well, Gump:

"A version of a product designed for someone buying this type of product for the first time. Entry-level products are usually the cheapest in a company's product range."

It's a tribute to where the industry is at the moment, having to offer more features than phones to stay relevant, that something like a Canon Rebel or especially the K-70 is so capable.

11-15-2018, 04:49 PM - 1 Like   #5
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I would say the addition of auto modes like portrait mode and landscape mode among others is what separates an entry level camera from a semi pro or pro level camera, experienced photographers have no need for these auto modes.
11-15-2018, 06:03 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by gump Quote
If the K-70 is an entry level camera then the next step up may be too much for me. OK, I am being a bit sarcastic but what i would like to know if there are attributes that define an entry level camera or is it a marketing term? Me thinks price rather than quality is the definition as all the experts say what is important is glass, glass, and glass. I can easily accept that. YET, I see analogy to wine snobbery. Perhaps my eyesight is a common as my palate.
Entry level, in my opinion, is the lowest product within a consumer product line. However, today's "entry level" cameras are actually quite advanced because phones have taken the place of cheap dedicated cameras.

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11-15-2018, 06:11 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Entry level, in my opinion, is the lowest product within a consumer product line. However, today's "entry level" cameras are actually quite advanced because phones have taken the place of cheap dedicated cameras.
I’m glad you posted this qualification. I was going to Reply, “Smartphone,” but I had decided that sarcastic response would obnoxious.

.:
11-15-2018, 07:16 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by gump Quote
If the K-70 is an entry level camera then the next step up may be too much for me. OK, I am being a bit sarcastic but what i would like to know if there are attributes that define an entry level camera or is it a marketing term? Me thinks price rather than quality is the definition as all the experts say what is important is glass, glass, and glass. I can easily accept that. YET, I see analogy to wine snobbery. Perhaps my eyesight is a common as my palate.
The same people who say "glass, glass, and glass" also say "glass is forever". All of this is simplistic. Yes, I have a Takumar 50mm f/1.4 lens that was made when I was in college fifty years ago, but my DA 18-135mm is more useful to me under most circumstances, and may even produce better photographs.

Now to the question you actually asked - Adam is correct .... "Entry Level" body is lowest point in the line. Pentax is talking "premium", which means something like the KP could be Pentax's "Entry Level" in a few years.

11-15-2018, 07:27 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Entry level, in my opinion, is the lowest product within a consumer product line. However, today's "entry level" cameras are actually quite advanced because phones have taken the place of cheap dedicated cameras.
I agree.

Back in 1968 an entry level camera may have been easier to define. I look at my first camera..a 35mm Ashai Pentax S1a SLR. It was a stripper model...1/500th of a second max shutter speed *, no internal light meter...not even a hot or cold shoe...basic, basic, basic. Came with a lens a 50mm Takumar F 2...but then back then, every SLR came with a lens...somewhere around 50mm .

My wife bought her first 'good' camera...also considered entry level. A K1000...that was in 1980. It had an internal light meter, a hot shoe, 1/1000th of a second max shutter speed...sort of a deluxe S1a with an internal meter, hot shoe. bayonet mount and 1/1000th of a second shutter.

So in about a decade, back then...a camera's feature had to increase to be marketable. Don't think my relatively featureless S1a would of been too marketable a decade later after 1968. As time goes by...machines..cameras, cars, etc...all increase in the number of features they provide as markets seem to demand it.

* I found out about 20 years later that my S1a actually did have an unmarked 1/1000th second shutter...I just had to move the shutter dial one more click after the 1/500th setting. Apparently Pentax felt they had to 'decontent' the S1a so it wouldn't poach sales from the next upgrade Pentax in the line..the SV...which 'had' a 1/1000th second shutter speed and it was marked on the dial.
11-15-2018, 07:51 PM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by bschriver11 Quote
I would say the addition of auto modes like portrait mode and landscape mode among others is what separates an entry level camera from a semi pro or pro level camera, experienced photographers have no need for these auto modes.
Does the auto-mode on K1 make it an entry level camera?

Features5 | PENTAX K-1 | RICOH IMAGING
11-15-2018, 08:25 PM - 5 Likes   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fogel70 Quote
Does the auto-mode on K1 make it an entry level camera?

Features5 | PENTAX K-1 | RICOH IMAGING
No, because it has a P mode. And the P stands for Professional!
11-15-2018, 08:50 PM   #12
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"Entry Level" is in my humble opinion, a undefined marketing term that might seem a bit more sophisticated that saying "cheapest and lowest performing model" My entry into the DSLR world was the so called "Flagship Model" of the time, the K-7. The Flagship model had better specs that the current entry level. Today's entry level may boast features and performance way above yesterdays flagship. A bit similar to automobiles. Features that were once luxury or premium times are now standard.
11-15-2018, 11:32 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by gump Quote
Definition, entry level cameraIf the K-70 is an entry level camera then the next step up may be too much for me. OK, I am being a bit sarcastic but what i would like to know if there are attributes that define an entry level camera or is it a marketing term? Me thinks price rather than quality is the definition as all the experts say what is important is glass, glass, and glass. I can easily accept that. YET, I see analogy to wine snobbery. Perhaps my eyesight is a common as my palate.
IMO, Ricoh have redefined they entry level, mid-range and professional offering by the sensor format:
- apsc = entry level
- full frame = mid-range
- medium format = professional

That's why there was , still is, a miss-understanding of the Pentax KP not being a "flagship", with Ricoh not being able to answer clearly on that question to avoid hurting some customers.

As a matter of fact, "smartphones" have pushed to redefine segments for ILC cameras.
Full frame isn't exclusively aimed at "professional" anymore, full frame is largely and broadly advertise in every communication channel.
apsc is the new entry level. Medium format is aimed at the professional corner.
11-16-2018, 01:17 AM - 2 Likes   #14
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Entry Level cameras have "scene modes" .... The others don't. That is the only meaningful and consistent distinction now.
11-16-2018, 01:38 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by gump Quote
what i would like to know if there are attributes that define an entry level camera or is it a marketing term?
Entry level to me means the least expensive product in a system or genre of products. So an entry level Toyota may be a Yaris or Corolla because it is the consumer's first purchase into that market with the corporate hope that after it's life cycle, the consumer will upgrade to a more expensive model with more features. General Motors was one of the first that pioneered this idea with Chevrolet being their entry level brand, that led to a Buick, with the goal of reaching the high end Cadillac.

In the DSLR world, that would be the Canon Rebel T series, the Nikon D3000's, and the Pentax K-S1. Although the K-70 is the least expensive Pentax currently, and therefore technically an 'entry-level' Pentax, it's features and quality are easily mid-level equivalent to the likes of the Canon 77D or 80D or Nikon D7000's. Price-wise it's an odd ball at below the other mid-levels but higher than the other entry-level DSLRs.

I do believe, IF Pentax had a K-50 priced entry level model, there would be more young Pentaxians. As it is, most of my high school students opt for the entry-level Canons and Nikons because they are put into 2 lens kits that are a couple hundred dollars less than a K-70 with one lens (albeit a superior 18-135mm zoom).
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