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10-06-2012, 07:10 AM   #1
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To Buy or not to Buy

Hello.

My name is Jorge and I am writing from Portugal..

I have one BIG doubt: Should I buy the k-30 or not!!

I'll explain, so, hold on as I take you on my history.

I was a SLR film guy from my 16 till my 27 years birthday. In that time, digitak grew a lot and one tme I finallly decidaded to go for it. Wanting something smaller, I bought a Sony V3, a great camera for it's time, but full manual controls. When it crashed off my bike, it was beyond repair. So, on to buy a new camera. The choice was a Panasonic LX3, with a magnificent 24mm (in 35mm terms, so no crop factor) and a f2.0 to f2.8 at full range.

This small litlle camera has been a great great camera, and is way past the 25.000pictures count without any problems. So a keeper!

This is where the story starts to change: With my child being 2years old, the panny focus just can't keep up with her moving so fast, when rnning or in a slider, etc.. I need something..

I have been cheking 2 cameras:
the pentax k-30 with the 18-105mm WR and the Nikin D3200 with the 18-105mm lens.
The k30 costs almos 400 dollars more than the d3200.

I love tha facto that the K30 has a "more camera feel" and the WR thing.
but, please explain me one or 2 things, please:
1) the WR protection (I know it is not water proof, so I can't that it scuba diving, but, can I take pictures in the rain? Can I be in the bath with my child and be taking pictures f her without any issues is water is coming from to shower to the camera?
2) I can get a 35mm f1.8 lens for nikon for about 200dollars. The lens as autofocus and new. The 35mm is important, because of the crop factor of 1.5x making it a 50mm prime lens on that camera. Can I get a similar lens for the pentax? I see online a lot of 50mm f1.4 prime lens for pentax, but that will be a 75mm lens on the camera. For interior purposes, or aking pictures ina small room, I am afraid that will be too big. Has anyone pictures of details of babies (hands, feet, that kind of thing) done with one of does lens?

It all comes down to cash. In europe, we have euro, so this is what I have: I can get the nikon d3200 18-115mm + 35mm1.8 for about 750euros.
I can have the pentax k30 with the 18-105mm WR lens for 900euros.

The choice of the WR lens, is a doubt also. The regular lens 18-55 is a lot cheaper, but what ios the use of having a wr body and not the lens? Here I can only have these sets:
Pentax K-30 Body & DA-L 18-55mm black - 777euros

Pentax K-30 Body & DA 18-55mm AL & DA 50-200mm AL - 950 euros

Pentax K-30 Body & DA 18-135mm ED AL (IF) DC WR black - 1077 euros

Pentax K-30 Body & DA 18-55mm AL & DA 55-300mm AL -979 euros





As you can see i have no 18-55 wr lens available.. In terms of quality do you feel the 18-55 is a lot better than the 18-135?


So, this is it.. I am willing to go a few extra bucks, But I need to know if you think I can get as good as pictures with any of these cameras..


Thanks


Zorza

10-06-2012, 07:34 AM   #2
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I haven't seen any posts of K-30 users who regretted paying more for the 18-135 WR lens to go with it. I have that lens and am very happy with both its utility and performance. Pentax make a 35mm lens that may interest you and users speak highly of it, especially in relation to its low cost:

PENTAX - smc PENTAX DA 35mm F2.4 AL
10-06-2012, 07:59 AM   #3
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The 18-135WR is a VERY versatile lens. I make sure its in my bag no matter what else I take with me. It is quiet, accurate, reliable, and within the limits of a moderately long zoom takes good pictures. It's also water resistant, small, and has a good throw for the zoom ring. I also own the 18-55WR lens and its nice but it is just not as versatile as the 18-135 and the 18-135's IQ is just a wee bit better. I've been considering selling the 18-55 because I just do not see any advantages to owning it with the 18-135.
10-06-2012, 08:08 AM   #4
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The 35mm 2.4 is the lens you want (as recommended above). It lets in a bit less light than the Nikon, but the image quality is better at similar apertures. I'd also get the 18-135mm lens because it's better than the 18-55mm, is almost the same size and has a better AF system.

10-06-2012, 08:42 AM   #5
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Personally I would go either with the kit that includes the 55-300 (if you need tele, 300 is pretty huge, and the lens is good for a kit lens) or the WR 18-135. It really depends what you need more, the reach or the WR. The good thing about Pentax is that you can use many cheap old manual lenses. And the K-30 has focus peaking, so focusing should be easy. Just keep in mind, WR is a system. For it to be WR, both the camera and lens have to be WR.
10-06-2012, 09:47 AM   #6
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IMO, get the 18-135mm- as others have said, it is a very versatile lens.

Here's our recommended lens page for the K-30:
Pentax K-30 Lens Guide - Pentax Camera News & Rumors - PentaxForums.com

Adam
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10-06-2012, 10:42 AM   #7
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I'm much in the same boat as the OP. I have no qualms that the K-30 is great enough for my needs and have done loads of research. I have a few K-mount lenses, nothing fancy but decent manual ones and a Sigma 17-70 and Tamron 70-300. I suppose I'm waiting for prices to drop a bit ATM in the UK. I have a real need for fast non-flash indoor working i.e. kids (grandkids in my case), so fast AF in moderate light indoors is the main concern.

Now, for the OP's info, the one thing I keep coming back to is the really really fast AF speed of the Pentax 35/2.4. If you search YouTube for AF tests of various make 35mm lenses, this beauty is just so much faster than Canon/Nikon/Sony. I know it's only one lens, but it's cheap, very good IQ, and is a focal length that can, with a bit of effort, do everything you need with kids indoors. At least, I expect it does from what I've seen. The K-30 is also faster AF than say the Canon 650D if you look into the performance figures on Imaging Resource, Full AF single point 650D=0.269s, K-30=0.162s, both on Sigma 70mm f/2.8 macro lenses. The D3200 with a Nikkor AF-S 60mm f/2.8G Macro lens came in at 0.276s. Bear in mind that macro lenses do tend to have longer focus throws which can slow them down a bit, but basically the K-30 with a 35/2.4 is a speedy machine. I'm also impressed by the fact that the 35/2.4 is sharp wide open, and as all AF is done at wide open, I would expect AF to more reliable than lenses that are soft wide open.

Last edited by SteveB; 10-06-2012 at 10:57 AM.
10-09-2012, 08:03 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
IMO, get the 18-135mm- as others have said, it is a very versatile lens.

Here's our recommended lens page for the K-30:
Pentax K-30 Lens Guide - Pentax Camera News & Rumors - PentaxForums.com
Is this lens guide applicable for the K-5 also? If not, is there a similar lens guide for it?

10-09-2012, 07:02 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by arcturus Quote
Is this lens guide applicable for the K-5 also? If not, is there a similar lens guide for it?
The lens guide is just suggested lens kits for the camera and they would work for the K-5 also, don't read too much into it as all Pentax K-mount lenses will work for the K-30 and K-5. These are some ideas put together for kits to cover everything.
10-09-2012, 07:46 PM   #10
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I have had the K-30 and 18-135 for a couple of months now. Both have exceeded my expectations. I would rate my 18-135 much higher in performance than my 18-55 I used to have. My 18-55 was not the WR model, and it was not a bad lens, the 18-135 is just that much better. I also have the 35/2.4 which is fast and sharp, but not weather resistant. I can only compare the K-30 to my old K20D, the focus is much faster and accurate, it pairs very well with the 18-135, which focuses silently and pretty quickly. The 35/2.4 does indeed focus fast, and is the quietest focusing screw drive lens I have had. I agree with you that a 50mm lens is too long for a small room.
10-10-2012, 11:39 AM   #11
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So, days have passed and now the doubt is another one:

I totally forgot the nikon d3200 and am now thinking about the k-30 or a used canon 5d mark1 (wich is full frame) and a 28-135 (f3,6-5,6) USM lens..

The price is about 1000 euros for the k30 with the WR 18-105 (wich is equivalent to the 28-160mm in full frame). The lens I think are just about the same.

the camera is a different story.
The 5d is full frame, the k-30 is not
The 5d is 8 years old technology, the k-30 is just about in
maximum ISO for the 5D is 3500 and k-30 is a lot more.

So, do you think a full frame with 8years has more quaility than the k-30? More sharpness, more color and even more low light quality?


Thanks

Zorza
10-10-2012, 12:02 PM   #12
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Nope. Don't buy a digital camera that old just for the sake of full frame. Even in a very brief and shallow comparison Canon 5D vs Pentax K-30 - Our Analysis the K-30 comes out on top in almost everything.
10-10-2012, 06:13 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Giklab Quote
Nope. Don't buy a digital camera that old just for the sake of full frame. Even in a very brief and shallow comparison Canon 5D vs Pentax K-30 - Our Analysis the K-30 comes out on top in almost everything.
Ditto, camera technology (and all electronics) have made huge strides in 8 years, and with that the prices of components drop. What was cutting edge 8 years ago has either been bypassed or is in every entry level camera.
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