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01-03-2013, 05:29 AM   #1
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Pentax K-01 Initial Impressions - With Photos

So, this past weekend I was shooting a dance event near London Heathrow. I picked up a K-01 from SRS Microsystems in the UK on the proceeding Friday, as a backup body, which was an ex-display model from Pentax UK.

First Impressions:
  • It looks quite large - but fits in my camera bags with lenses much easier than my K-30, therefore leading me to conclude that my analysis of the size via snapsort was correct (approx 30% smaller)
  • I keep forgetting it doesn't have a viewfinder and raising it to my eye
  • The colours coming out of it in JPG seem "different" than from my K-30 - with more "punch", despite them being set to the same settings. I'm confused by this
  • It worked properly with my Metz 58 AF1, unlike my K-30 (I'd not realised it wasn't until I put it on the K-01 and the pictures suddenly started looking good!)
  • LiveView is good for action photography, in that it allows me to be aware of my surroundings - this is particularly important in the middle of a busy dance floor, where I might well wonder into the path of an oncoming dancer!
  • Battery life is excellent, better than my K-30 IMO
  • CDAF worked well, much beyond my expectations. I found the face tracking mode to generally be OK, and the camera to be reasonably intelligent about it. It also felt more accurate than my K30 in PDAF, but I have no empircal evidence for this
  • Tamron 17-50mm performed well and focused quickly with CDAF, again, I was expecting problems with this and didn't experience any
  • Easier to determine whether it had focused correctly in LiveView mode, vs Viewfinder, due to peaking.

Negatives:
  • Locks up more than the K30 when shooting in burst, this did occasionally get a bit annoying, although better timing skills on my part would negate this to a large extent - I didn't need to use the buffer too often as is.
  • Took me ages to work out how to change between aperture and shutter in TAv mode!
  • Can't take stills during video
  • Was a bit uncomfortable holding it for long periods, and I occasionally pressed some of the rear controls, especially when holding it in portrait (I think a tripod mount hand grip would solve/help with this













Now if anyone can tell me how to get the same "punch" out of my K-30 JPG engine, I'll be a happy bunny (I'll be even happier if they can fix my metz 58 AF1 on it as well!)

01-03-2013, 06:04 AM   #2
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To address the last part of the posting in this first posting... You might want to try the jpeg+raw on both cameras. Sure t takes up more room on a memory card, but it also "leaves room" for much more creative type of work; even for colors, shades, textures, etc... The options are near endless for raw.
01-03-2013, 06:35 AM   #3
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Nice review, and cool shots
01-03-2013, 06:52 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Medium FormatPro Quote
To address the last part of the posting in this first posting... You might want to try the jpeg+raw on both cameras. Sure t takes up more room on a memory card, but it also "leaves room" for much more creative type of work; even for colors, shades, textures, etc... The options are near endless for raw.
I was using JPG Plus RAW on the K30, due to this issue. Although the K-30 shots are OK, I prefer the look of the ones from the K-01. It may be due to the Metz not working well on the K30, and the AF360FGZ not being powerful enough (the ballroom had a relatively high ceiling). Will have to do some more experimentatiojn.

Avoiding JPG+RAW on the K-01 due to the buffering not being as good as the K-30 - plus I was happy with the JPG Engine output, and it really does seem to slow aperture down using RAWs natively.

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