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06-18-2013, 05:47 PM   #1
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Persuade me to buy a K-01

I am currently very tempted to buy a K-01, but also thinking it might be a stupid idea, and would appreciate people's thoughts - particularly in relation to a couple of particular points.

I have just bought a Pentax Q, and really like it. And I actually like the lack of viewfinder. With my K30 I tend to prefer using live view when using a tripod or bean bag - I also like not having to have the camera at eye level, shooting from the ground level for example without having to lie on the floor - but I also don't like live view on DSLRs compared to mirrorless cameras. (I also like focus peaking, and really like the way it works with quick shift lenses, but again this isn't as nice to use on a DSLR.)

Also, I really like my K30, but I don't like the noise. That is, not the high ISO perfomance but the loud shutter. It seems obtrusive.

The Q and the K-01 are so much quieter. The K5 is also quieter, but I found it noticeably heavier than the K30. (And the K-01 would be even lighter.)

So for these reasons I am tempted to try the K-01.

The problem is, I tried the K-01 but returned it, because I was disappointed with the AF speed.

However, I have two reasons for wondering if it is worth another try.

1) I never updated the firmware. I believe this improves the AF speed. Was this improvement significant?

2) I found the AF, more or less, okay with my prime lenses, but really wasn't happy with it with my zoom lenses. But I didn't own the 18-135 when I had the K-01. But it is recommended to be used with the K-01 here Pentax K-01 Lens Guide - Photographic Articles - PentaxForums.com - is AF with this lens as quick as with the primes? (I have the DA40 XS and the DA 70.)

Alternatively, I might give up zooms completely and get the DA 15.

I can't justify spending any more really, so buying the K-01 would mean selling the K30, and buying the DA 15 would mean selling the 18-135.

(And if I want something like the flexibility of a zoom, I could always carry the K-01 and the Q - and would probably still be lighter than the K30 with the 18-135.)

Do I really want to give up my 18-135 though?

Any thoughts appreciated, but especially if you have answers to my two questions above.

06-18-2013, 05:54 PM   #2
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Sorry one other question: are any other zoom lenses particularly good with the K-01?

This site suggests the Tamron 17-50
Pentax Lenses to Make the Perfect K-01 Kit | B&H Photo Video
06-18-2013, 06:15 PM   #3
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For you #1 - the answer is yes, the improvement with firmware to AF speed is significant. It is not as fast as your K-30, nor will it ever be, but it is significantly faster than it was with the v1.0 firmware.

#2 - no, it is not as fast but it is adequate for non-moving objects and non-sports issues IMHO.

K-30 + 18-135 is versatile, fast, WR, and a host of other things. K-01 + DA15 (a combination I own) is slow, not WR, lacks a VF (even if you do not prefer it having the option is superior to not IMHO), and very inflexible but has superior IQ and is marginally smaller overall.

My F35-70 works very well on my K-01.
06-18-2013, 06:17 PM   #4
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Either keep the K-30 or save up for a K-5II body, the K-01 isn't for you.

06-18-2013, 06:27 PM   #5
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That's a toughie - I prefer the K-30 for long glass (the 18-135 lives on mine as a ready-to-go all-weather kit), and the K-01 for indoor work (for the quiet shutter) or "gardening" (for working at arm's length).

Firmware 1.01 was a big improvement, although zooms (especially long variable-aperture zooms) are still not great - although the speed of focus depends a lot on how long the focus throw of the lens is - a lens that has to rotate a long ways is going to take a long time no matter what. The K-01 loves the DA Limited primes, obviously. I've used my K-01 with the Tammy 17-50 indoors with no problems (although I personally prefer the handling of small primes to big barrels on the K-01). The K-01 generally does okay with shorter fixed-aperture zooms. Short and bright, works all right; long and slow, it won't go.

An older zoom that I like on the K-01 is the F 35-70 f/3.5-4.5. It's about the size of a prime, has decent optics, focuses fast, and is a useful focal range (tho' you kind of have it covered with the 40 and 70). They used to be easy to find cheap, until the K-01 came along.
06-18-2013, 06:51 PM   #6
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I just spent quite a while hunting for focus in the evening light. Eventually went manual. DA40. k-01

Doesn't make sense to me that you'll give up the k30 and Q combo. They are mutually exclusive so it makes a nice set. The k-01 and Q will overlap more than that.

I think you should take a longer term view on your lenses. The camera bodies will be outdated in a year. I wouldn't base it on the camera body. Get the best lenses you can afford that suit your style.
06-18-2013, 10:28 PM   #7
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I think this should persuade ya

PENTAX K-01 Digital Camera w/Dual Lenses
06-19-2013, 03:47 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by sledger Quote
Either keep the K-30 or save up for a K-5II body, the K-01 isn't for you.
You may be right that I would regret giving up my DSLR.

I am not sure I would prefer the K5 to the K30 though. When I tried them both I preferred the weight and feel of the K30. And of the things I wanted the K5 would only give me a quieter shutter (and I'd lose focus peaking).

Maybe I'll just have to wait for the price of the K01 to drop even more (and try to silence the voice in my head that tells me I can't justify owning 3 cameras).

06-19-2013, 10:08 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by rob_k20d Quote
You may be right that I would regret giving up my DSLR.

I am not sure I would prefer the K5 to the K30 though. When I tried them both I preferred the weight and feel of the K30. And of the things I wanted the K5 would only give me a quieter shutter (and I'd lose focus peaking).

Maybe I'll just have to wait for the price of the K01 to drop even more (and try to silence the voice in my head that tells me I can't justify owning 3 cameras).
....You need more cameras...you need more cameras... ;-) Well, I canīt comment on a lot of your questions, but just tell you my reason for buying the K-01. Sometimes when I just went out for a small trip, I couldnīt really decide : Should I bring my camera bag or not (I Is a little heavy) So very often I did go out with nothing - and missed a lot of great shots. So thatīs my reason to get the K-01 : A small, fun camera that gives me great pictures, and is with me most of the time. - OK - I have to admit - I have done a few "stupid" investments the last few days : Bought 2 Qīs - So you see - You DO need more cameras :-)
06-19-2013, 12:17 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by mangamonster Quote
I think this should persuade ya

PENTAX K-01 Digital Camera w/Dual Lenses
The dual lens kit in today's sell out Woot is a good deal - however some people prefer the coloured versions - there is an Ebay listing for the 2 lens kit from seller BigValue - the yellow is US$434.99 and the white is 459.99 - black 719.95. all have free US shipping. The add mistakenly lists that the 40mm lens is also included.

Maybe the colour is enough to tempt you - then sell the lenses and use old manual lenses.

Pentax K 01 Digital Camera w 18 55mm 50 200mm Lenses Black White Yellow | eBay
06-21-2013, 12:01 AM   #11
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K-01, a 28mm, and a 50mm make the perfect kit for me. I use a small belt pouch to hold one lens. Sometimes I'll bring along the 40mm XS too just in case I need AF.
K-01 looks great with old manual lenses, much better than with the tiny 40mm XS.
06-22-2013, 05:07 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by kakapo Quote
K-01, a 28mm, and a 50mm make the perfect kit for me. I use a small belt pouch to hold one lens. Sometimes I'll bring along the 40mm XS too just in case I need AF.
K-01 looks great with old manual lenses, much better than with the tiny 40mm XS.
It is funny you should say that.

I recently bought a 28mm sigma mini wide, which I have been pleased with (and makes a nice macro lens on the Q as well), and I already have an M 50mm 1.7, and the DA 70mm.

So now I am thinking of selling the 40mm XS, and using that to help pay for the K-01. I've not been very good with manual lenses before, but I didn't have focus peaking before, so on the K-01 (or K30) I should be able to get used to it, especially with a relatively wide lens.

The other advantage of the older lenses, is that for each lens, I essentially have two lenses (whether on K mount or Q). (I only have the cheap adatper.)

So I'd have the K-30, with my zooms, and my 70mm.
The K-01 with a set of primes (mostly manual, except the 70mm)
The Q, with the fish eye, standard prime, and various K mount lenses with the adapter.

That sounds like the perfect solution.

I always thought having a number of lenses was okay (after all that's the point of having interchangeable lenses), but having numerous cameras just seemed extravagent. But I think 3 cameras is the way to go now. May have to sell a few things though, and not just the 40mm.

Last edited by rob_k20d; 06-22-2013 at 05:13 AM.
06-22-2013, 10:15 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by rob_k20d Quote
I recently bought a 28mm sigma mini wide
QuoteOriginally posted by rob_k20d Quote
So now I am thinking of selling the 40mm XS
If you get the K-01 we'll have 3 things in common Sigma Mini Wide is fantastic. Close focus and very sharp. I'm not very impressed with the 40mm XS either. Could be because of the magenta cast, or too much contrast. Or it could be that I'm a sucker for looks, and the K-01 looks way better with old manuals than the awkwardly tiny 40.
06-28-2013, 11:54 AM   #14
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K-01 thoughts

I just sold my K-01 and bought a K-30.

Loved the looks and image quality from the K01.

However, two deal killers for ME. No viewfinder and only 1 frame per second in RAW. Particularly the 1 fps.

Your mileage may vary.

Best of luck
06-28-2013, 10:26 PM   #15
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I just made the jump from film photography to digital this past April. I did a year of research, watched the trends and the market, and every time I went down the big checklist, the K-01 came out on top for my desires. When I actually got it I fell in love with it pretty quickly. The more I use it and get the hang of it, the more I love it. In the film world I mostly shot a Pentax MX or various rangefinders. The K-01 with the focus peaking and the zoom focus-assist, to me, is like a 21st century rangefinder mentality. I use old, prime, manual focus lenses quite a bit, some "M"s, some "A"s, and some screwmount M42 Takumars. The Pentax-A lenses are a great experience. Totally automatic, but manual focus. Very easy, fantastic image quality. For zooms, I have a 18-55mm II which is really a killer all around lens. One of my very favorite lenses is the Pentax-F 35-70mm. It's a fast auto-focus on the K-01 and the image quality is nearly as good as the prime lenses. It's a real gem and a price that can't be beat. It rivals $600+ lenses.

The K-01 is an awesome camera.

Brad

PS: I almost forgot. The 40mm XS pancake that came with it is truly a fantastic lens. When I'm into that focal length, it's a very proud prime to have. It gets VERY high ratings here at the forum too.

Last edited by bradsarno; 06-28-2013 at 10:31 PM.
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