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10-13-2013, 10:52 PM   #1
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It's a better camera than I thought. Here's why...

Took my K-01 out of its box today, with an old 28mm Pentax A lens, to sort of simulate what the Ricoh GR might be like. I know, I know, its actually a 43mm equivalent, not the same. But still. Gaffer-taped the lens to stay at 15', to mimic the Ricoh's Snap Focus, and went off to photograph a train that never showed up. Amtrak.

What I found, taking pictures again with the K-01, is that I still like it. A lot. Actually, for just walk-around photography, might be I like it more than my K-30. The controls are simpler. I use it with a Hoodman loupe taped to the back, which makes a beautiful gigantic EVF out of that screen. Now, for sports, or fast moving airplanes, no. It has problems focusing, very slow compared to the K-30. But for everything else, with a regular range lens, it just works right and feels good in the hand.

The way I take pictures with it is easy -- using spot exposure, press the AE/L button when the screen looks 'right', recompose, and take the picture. The AE/L button is right there at the top of the back, And the other controls are easy to use, simple, almost intuitive.

You know what? Pentax got a FAR better design out of Marc Newson than Leica did. And -- if you're like me, maybe putting your K-01 aside in favor of a newer DSLR ... why not give it another shot? After all, the qualities and features that attracted us to our K-01s are still there!

EDIT -- I just read the 'K-01 Evangelist' post -- he's putting it a lot better than I am. The K-01's quite a camera. It grows on you... and, bottom line, it just feels good to use!

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Last edited by jon404; 10-13-2013 at 11:06 PM.
10-13-2013, 10:59 PM   #2
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I'll be keeping my K-01 regardless of my DSLR upgrade path. With two or three limited primes (e.g. 21/43/77) it's a great take-everywhere camera.
10-13-2013, 11:16 PM   #3
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@Sandy -- yes -- might just keep it in the car with my 16-45mm lens, next to the K-30 with a 55-300mm telephoto. Best of both worlds, ready to go. The K-30 is great for airplane pix... no trouble at all focusing on a little plane against that big bright sky.

The K-01 was my first Pentax camera. A fine introduction to a range of excellent products.
10-14-2013, 03:28 AM   #4
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It's a better camera than I thought.
So what did you think?

10-15-2013, 12:01 AM   #5
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Well, when I bought it at the fire sale price, the consensus seemed to be that it was a clunky design, sort of weird, nowhere near as good as a DSLR, etc., etc. But the price was right, and test comparisons on DPreview showed -- and still show -- that the K-01 is as good and usually better than ANY other 16 MP camera for image quality. So what did I think? That it was a good buy and that I could put up with its idiosyncrasies.

I have fun with it. Today, found that the old Pentax-A 28mm lens is as sharp, but no sharper, than the 16-45 zoom set at 28mm... both at f/5.6. And tomorrow, will use the 16-45mm gaffer-taped to stay at 35mm (52mm equiv) to see how I like 'seeing' at that focal length compared to 28mm (42mm equiv). Seems that Pentax makes a f/2.4 35mm lens at a fairly low price, and Photozone says it's very sharp.

Not that the 16-45mm on a K-01 is bad. Here's a 100% crop, 1/400 at f/5,6, ISO 100, at 38mm (57mm equiv). No editing, no sharpening... taken about 4 PM at the Army-Navy Academy in Carlsbad, California.
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