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11-14-2012, 09:20 AM   #1
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Very Impressed

Hello all,

So, I just got my K-01 yesterday, and I've only had a couple minutes to play with it. But, here are my impressions so far: Firstly, the image quality is amazing. I have a K-7, and I've been really happy with it. Unfortunately, I was canoeing/backpacking with it this fall and about 100km into the trip it took a tumble and the rear LCD is now in several hundred pieces. So, I had been debating what to replace it with, and I got a great deal on the K-01 (yellow of course).

So, here are the pros:
1. Image quality... absolutely stunning compared to the K-7 it replaces
2. Focus accuracy- again, when you compare it to the K-7 (which focused faster but much less accurately)
3. Focus peaking - excellent to have this, particularly with my tamron 300mm 2.8
4. Looks-- I don't have the herd mentality, so looks being unconventional is no issue with me.
5. Handling- I quite like the feel of the camera in my hands, and it plays well with the couple lenses I've mounted so far.
6. Focus speed- with a fast lens attached it's very good and very decisive... not so much with slower lenses (see cons).
7. HDR handheld- Fantastic, even in poor light and caffeine overload it matched them spectacularly.

Cons
1. Focusing speed -with my BIGMA- the light was admittedly poor, but I can manually focus faster... this might be a problem in the future... we'll see.
2. RAW buffer- haven't actually tried this yet but I hear it's 1 fps
3. Dust removal noise- Not a pleasant sound really, it surprised me the first time it did it. Sounds like a dust removal chainsaw... but this is really nitpicking.

Other than that I'm really astounded. I thought the noise on my K-7 was no big deal... and it wasn't... until I compared the images. Can't wait to replace the K-7 with the next Pentax DSLR flagship (I've decided to wait out the K-5 in the hopes the focus accuracy for moving object is better). In the meantime I can still take pictures with the K-7 when weather is a consideration. (Although I'm not entirely sure how waterproof the camera is now...). It's kind of like shooting film though. No idea how well you did until you get home and 'develop' the roll so to speak.

Cheers.

11-14-2012, 09:36 AM   #2
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Congratulations. Sorry about your K-7. I'm surprised about the dust removal sound as my K-5 is perfectly silent and I thought the K-01 had the same system.
11-14-2012, 09:49 AM - 1 Like   #3
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The K-5 has an ultrasonic dust removal system - the K-01 uses the same "shake the sensor" that the K-30, K-r, and K-x employ - when enabled, there's kind of a ker-plunk on startup. I've come to associate it with taking pictures, so it's a happy sound to me.
11-14-2012, 02:19 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by THoog Quote
The K-5 has an ultrasonic dust removal system - the K-01 uses the same "shake the sensor" that the K-30, K-r, and K-x employ - when enabled, there's kind of a ker-plunk on startup. I've come to associate it with taking pictures, so it's a happy sound to me.
Thanks, I genuinely thought that the K-01 was using the K-5 technology in that area too. The K-5 dust management system is so much better than the K-x system in both effectiveness and low noise that it's no comparison!

11-15-2012, 08:39 AM   #5
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Hello again,
DocRWM, thanks, the K7 was a faithful companion for hundreds and hundreds of miles of inclement weather and never once complained. I certainly hope the K5 replacement is as well built and reliable. My cameras tend to get full-on abuse which is why I chose Pentax in the first place. I use my cameras as a tool, and when they break I have the satisfaction of knowing that I never missed a shot because I was afraid to have my prized possession out in the real world. I still love the K7 and will continue to use it and may even repair it in the short term.
So I've had a chance to use the K-01 a little more, and I can say that focusing with 'consumer' zooms is hopeless. However, put a prime or a fast zoom (2.8) on and I can easily see using this rather than a K5/K7. The added bonus of using the CDAF system is that zooms with BF/FF issues (I have a lens that FF at 28mm and BF at 70mm) now works flawlessly at either end. In addition, I love how the display latency is almost non-existent. All things considered I can see using this camera for 90% of my shooting. I think macro will really shine on this body. For deep backcountry I'll still need a body that can take more abuse, so here's hoping Pentax delivers a knock-out body sometime next year when I've amassed the small fortune it'll require.

Cheers.
11-15-2012, 10:24 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by moray-eel-bite Quote
Hello again,
DocRWM, thanks, the K7 was a faithful companion for hundreds and hundreds of miles of inclement weather and never once complained. I certainly hope the K5 replacement is as well built and reliable. My cameras tend to get full-on abuse which is why I chose Pentax in the first place. I use my cameras as a tool, and when they break I have the satisfaction of knowing that I never missed a shot because I was afraid to have my prized possession out in the real world. I still love the K7 and will continue to use it and may even repair it in the short term.
So I've had a chance to use the K-01 a little more, and I can say that focusing with 'consumer' zooms is hopeless. However, put a prime or a fast zoom (2.8) on and I can easily see using this rather than a K5/K7. The added bonus of using the CDAF system is that zooms with BF/FF issues (I have a lens that FF at 28mm and BF at 70mm) now works flawlessly at either end. In addition, I love how the display latency is almost non-existent. All things considered I can see using this camera for 90% of my shooting. I think macro will really shine on this body. For deep backcountry I'll still need a body that can take more abuse, so here's hoping Pentax delivers a knock-out body sometime next year when I've amassed the small fortune it'll require.

Cheers.
I never had a K-7 but the bodies are nearly identical and the build is the same to the point that they use the same BG4 battery grip. Very glad to hear that the K-01 is working so well for you. I went the Q route instead and am enjoying it very much. Regards.
11-15-2012, 02:26 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Thanks, I genuinely thought that the K-01 was using the K-5 technology in that area too. The K-5 dust management system is so much better than the K-x system in both effectiveness and low noise that it's no comparison!
Just curious, how does the dust shaker of the K-01 compare to the one in the K20d?

I find that with my K-5, I've never had to clean the sensor...while on the K20d it was like once ever 2 weeks.
11-15-2012, 02:40 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by HSV Quote
Just curious, how does the dust shaker of the K-01 compare to the one in the K20d?

I find that with my K-5, I've never had to clean the sensor...while on the K20d it was like once ever 2 weeks.
If its the same as the K-x as we've been told than it's probably on par with your K20d. I have to clean the K-x every few weeks depending on the environment and how many lens changes but have never had to clean the K-5, ever, either.

11-15-2012, 03:31 PM   #9
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I've never had to clean my K7 sensor either, and it's logged probably 500 miles of backcountry travel with multiple lens changes daily in much less than ideal conditions in addition to probably a thousand or so miles of relatively more civilized hiking on trails. I'll have to keep an eye on the K-01 and let you all know how it holds together. I have no intention of changing my 'rough on equipment' ways, so I'll know fairly quickly if it is significantly worse than the K7/K5 system.

Cheers.
11-15-2012, 04:06 PM   #10
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So I noticed that in the review Adam states that the remote cannot be used in bulb mode, but I just did exactly that. My K01 was purchased from another Pentaxian and already had 1.01 in it. Can I assume that this was an added feature of the new firmware as well?
11-15-2012, 07:39 PM   #11
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So would the Tamron SP AF17-50 f2.8 be a good match with the K01? Would the AF speed be equivalent to say using the 40XS prime? Cheers.
11-15-2012, 07:47 PM   #12
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My impressions from reading is that the 40xs is fast to focus mainly due to the small mass that the motor is driving. The 17-50 is no beast certainly, but I'd not expect it to keep up with any prime for focus speed.

I'm finding the AF to just be a different beast compared to my K-5: focus is leisurely yet even in the dark corners of my barely-lit computer room it inevitably finds a lock (using fw1.1). I'm talking about 1/10s, f/4, iso5000 dark, and it's locking. That's not bad in my book.
11-15-2012, 08:38 PM   #13
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Primes seem to focus faster in general. My 50 f1.4 is quite fast. My sigma 28-70 2.8 is also fairly fast, so I would expect a 17-50 2.8 to be slightly faster than that. It won't compete with the best PDAF cameras, but it's quite usable for any still/slow moving things in general. Also, focus is just plain more accurate than my K7 was. I often had slightly blurry photos with it, but the K01 so far has nailed it almost every shot. That being said, if it's fast moving children and/or other hard to photograph things then a proper DSLR is probably better for you. Me, I think the K01 is amazing for the price and it's level of capabilities. If off-camera flash gets enabled using a firmware update I'll be 99% happy with it. The other thing I miss is the dual IR sensors from the K7 as a front-facing one is really only meant for taking pictures of yourself so far as I'm concerned and I don't find myself that interesting.
11-15-2012, 08:49 PM   #14
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For me, focus accuracy is more important than focus speed. It sounds like the K01 does a good job in that regards.
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