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09-26-2014, 06:29 AM - 6 Likes   #1
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K-S1 impressions (from a K-01 owner)

The K-S1 is now in the shops and I had the chance to try it out. My overall feeling was that it is a really interesting camera, especially for K-01 users. I didnít attempt to evaluate image quality and I didnít have time to go through the menus, but here are my observations about the camera in general.

Size & body
My first reaction was that it felt much lighter than I expected. Itís about the same weight as the K-01, but somehow feels lighter. The model on display has the DA35 2.4 mounted, so it was a very light combination. The grip felt more comfortable than the K-01 and totally adequate with primes attached, but the DA55-300 makes you wish for a K-5 style grip. It doesnít feel cheap, but it is a bit plasticky and not as solid as the K-01 or K-5/K-3.

Viewfinder
The viewfinder is tremendous and feels really surprising on such a small camera. I think this is a real differentiator when comparing to competitorís models. If you look through the viewfinder the improvement is immediately obvious.

Autofocus
Perhaps I am strange because I am more familiar with the K-01ís CDAF performance than recent PDAF performance. I was pretty amazed by the speed of CDAF on the K-S1. With the DA 35 2.4, forces seemed pretty much instantaneous. The DA21 was almost as good. The DA55-300 was pretty slow because of the long focus throw. When I switched to PDAF, I couldnít detect any difference with any of those lenses. CDAF is important to me, because having got used to the K-01, I know there are a lot of situations where Iíll prefer to use CDAF for one reason or another.

Rear mode dial
I found the mode dial on the back to be a little stiff to move, compared to the usual mode dial on the top of DSLRs. The direction buttons are on the inside of the dial and a little recessed. I was trying to press the mode dial in rather than the buttons, but I donít think it will be a problem once you get used to it. When you look at how small the top plate of the camera is, it becomes clear why they would want to move the mode dial to the back. There isnít much space on the top. I think if you change modes often, you much prefer another model.

TAv operation
I can confirm that TAv works the same way as the K-01. You press the EV comp button to switch the dial between shutter speed and aperture. This means that EV comp is not available in that mode. I suppose it is slightly more convenient to have TAv as a dedicated position on the dial.

Iím not completely decided as to whether I will get a K-S1. I donít like to pay early adopter prices. However, I canít see anything major wrong with the camera so far.

09-26-2014, 06:57 AM   #2
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Thank you for sharing your impressions of the K-S1. As a proud user of three K-01s I was somewhat interested in the K-S1 till I saw the outrageous price they were asking for it. For under $500 I would maybe consider it.
09-26-2014, 07:10 AM   #3
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Thanks OP! Could someone let us know if the K-S1 supports multi-exposure and interval shooting? I believe both of these should be in the Drive Mode menu (where you pick between single shot, continuous hi, continuous low, etc). I downloaded the K-S1 manual to see if it had inherited the sophisticated multi-exposure capabilities of the K-3, and couldn't find any mention of either multi-exposure or interval shooting in the manual...
09-26-2014, 07:11 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by JPT Quote
You press the EV comp button to switch the dial between shutter speed and aperture.
. . . And that will be a VERY swift move given the placement of the +/- right next to your shutter finger. I find Pentax placement of buttons next to the shutter finger very interesting, and obviously carefully considered. Next to the trigger finger on K-S1, K-30, or K-50, you find green and +/-. These models are for mid-level users, who might want to "bail out" with the green button more often than pros. K-3 and K-5, on the other hand -- the pro models -- have the ISO button on the top deck, not the green, because pros might want faster access to ISO selection than the bail-out green button. I am convinced that Pentax designers always put knowledge of how various people use cameras into their designs, and moreso than other makers.

09-26-2014, 07:18 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Doundounba Quote
Thanks OP! Could someone let us know if the K-S1 supports multi-exposure and interval shooting? I believe both of these should be in the Drive Mode menu (where you pick between single shot, continuous hi, continuous low, etc). I downloaded the K-S1 manual to see if it had inherited the sophisticated multi-exposure capabilities of the K-3, and couldn't find any mention of either multi-exposure or interval shooting in the manual...
I'm afraid I didn't look for that.

One thing that bothered me a bit was the off-on-video switch around the shutter release. I always find that it's easy to overshoot the middle position on that type of switch, which in this case means missing "on" activating the video mode. On the other hand, I can imagine the red/green light around the shutter release would be a helpful warning to avoid situations where you forget you've got the camera in video mode when all you want to do is shoot a still.

Last edited by JPT; 09-26-2014 at 07:31 AM.
09-26-2014, 07:56 AM   #6
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It is an interesting camera, but the K-01 offers the most amazing value for money. It is solid and a real pleasure to use. I feel the K-S1 is a little plasticky for the price and yes it does feel lighter and not as solid.
09-26-2014, 08:13 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Klansdown Quote
It is an interesting camera, but the K-01 offers the most amazing value for money. It is solid and a real pleasure to use. I feel the K-S1 is a little plasticky for the price and yes it does feel lighter and not as solid.
While I agree with you that the K-01 is an amazing value - I love mine - it is that only because it was a failure in the marketplace. It was not such a good value when introduced.

---------- Post added 09-26-14 at 11:21 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by JPT Quote
The K-S1 is now in the shops and I had the chance to try it out...
Thanks for your impressions.

Once the early adopter tax expires, I might be in for one.
09-26-2014, 08:54 AM   #8
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I found the real world samples here: PENTAX K-S1 (review first) ? ??? ???? - ??????
Very outstanding image quality. The led lights look gorgeous in the dark .

09-26-2014, 09:49 AM   #9
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I noticed last night the 9/26 arrival date was taken off the .jp site, good to know it's available at least in parts of the world still a few days left to meet the "September" ship date elsewhere! It will be interesting to see what made and missed the FW1.0 cut, as the specs pages kept changing in the past four weeks.

I still expect a 1.01 to clean up some details like the interval shooting/video; it's not worth the trouble to exclude what's already built into the support chips.

Last edited by jimr-pdx; 09-26-2014 at 10:02 AM.
09-26-2014, 12:50 PM   #10
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Thank you JPT.
Did you by any chance try video ?
If so, does CDAF actually work on moving subjects sequences ?
How was the screen focus-peaking in video or LV ?
09-26-2014, 02:38 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by JPT Quote
TAv operation
I can confirm that TAv works the same way as the K-01. You press the EV comp button to switch the dial between shutter speed and aperture. This means that EV comp is not available in that mode.
That can't be right. No EC in TAv ?!? What if you hold the EC btn and turn the dial?

Regards,
--Anders.
09-26-2014, 03:04 PM   #12
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It's in shops overhere. AT photokina the Pentaxgirl in the stand said that the wheal was a little stiff the first day, but after turning it a day with all press it was very nice. I was there on Friday and had no trouble with the large mode dial on the back.
09-26-2014, 05:07 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by asp1880 Quote
That can't be right. No EC in TAv ?!? What if you hold the EC btn and turn the dial?

Regards,
--Anders.
I didn't try that specifically, but I can say for sure that holding the EC button and turning the dial does not work on my K-01. Is anyone aware of a way of using EC with TAv on the K-01?
09-26-2014, 11:58 PM   #14
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Tav is M mode on K-01.
And no, there is no EC available in this mode, only AE-L ; so apparently no change here on K-S1.
09-27-2014, 01:52 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Zygonyx Quote
Thank you JPT.
Did you by any chance try video ?
If so, does CDAF actually work on moving subjects sequences ?
How was the screen focus-peaking in video or LV ?
Focus peaking seems to work exactly like the K-01. I don't know if there's a button like the red button that you can configure as a short cut.
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