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11-19-2013, 11:38 PM   #1
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Help choosing between K-30 and K-500

Hello everybody,

I am a new member here
I want to buy a Pentax entry level DSLR. This is my first DSLR as well. Now, I am confused between two options:

1. Pentax K-30 with DA L 18-55mm lens for $550.
2. Pentax K-500 with DA L 18-55mm and 50-200mm lenses for $580.

I like K-30 more but an additional 50-200mm lens for $30 is something to consider. Both cameras look essentially the same. K-30 is weather resistant but the DA L lens that comes with it is not WR (I know some come with WR lenses but the one that I want to buy is not). K-500 is also lacking the electronic level. How important are those lacking features? The other difference is that K-500 comes with AA batteries but K-30 is shipped with LI batteries. I would rather prefer to use AA batteries with 700+ shots rather than LI batteries with 450 shots. What do you think?

I appreciate your help.

11-19-2013, 11:45 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by galaxytab Quote
Hello everybody,

I am a new member here
I want to buy a Pentax entry level DSLR. This is my first DSLR as well. Now, I am confused between two options:

1. Pentax K-30 with DA L 18-55mm lens for $550.
2. Pentax K-500 with DA L 18-55mm and 50-200mm lenses for $580.

I like K-30 more but an additional 50-200mm lens for $30 is something to consider. Both cameras look essentially the same. K-30 is weather resistant but the DA L lens that comes with it is not WR (I know some come with WR lenses but the one that I want to buy is not). K-500 is also lacking the electronic level. How important are those lacking features? The other difference is that K-500 comes with AA batteries but K-30 is shipped with LI batteries. I would rather prefer to use AA batteries with 700+ shots rather than LI batteries with 450 shots. What do you think?

I appreciate your help.
The K-30's rechargeable battery actually lasts longer than rechargeable AA's (but alkaline AA's should be about the same). I would go for the K-30 myself (due to the K-500's missing features), sell the kit lens, and get the 18-135mm. That's the perfect combo for just about anything IMO!

Adam
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11-19-2013, 11:51 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
The K-30's rechargeable battery actually lasts longer than rechargeable AA's (but alkaline AA's should be about the same). I would go for the K-30 myself (due to the K-500's missing features), sell the kit lens, and get the 18-135mm. That's the perfect combo for just about anything IMO!
I just wonder if K-500 is lacking any other feature that I am not aware of? In all of the reviews that I read, it is mentioned that they are the same.
11-20-2013, 12:18 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by galaxytab Quote
I just wonder if K-500 is lacking any other feature that I am not aware of? In all of the reviews that I read, it is mentioned that they are the same.
It's missing 3 things compared to the K-50/K-30:
-viewfinder af point display
-electronic level
-weather sealing

If you don't care about any of those, then the answer is no One thing to keep in mind is that without the electronic level, your verticals won't automatically be rotated. So if you shoot a lot of those, maybe the K-30 or K-50 would be a better choice.


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11-20-2013, 01:33 AM   #5
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  1. Weather sealing is not so important to me (well, I never had a WR camera, but I guess I don't shoot in harsh environments very often). I do shoot in snow sometimes.
  2. Image auto-rotate is also not a big deal since I can rotate the pictures manually.
  3. I have no idea how does it feel if it does not show the focus points in the view finder.
  4. Are their firmware identical? Can K-500 use old lenses? Does it support focus picking?
11-20-2013, 06:09 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by galaxytab Quote
Image auto-rotate is also not a big deal since I can rotate the pictures manually.
The camera does it without cropping though, it rotates the sensor when you're taking the shot.
11-20-2013, 06:34 AM   #7
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Sorry, I couldn't get it. Why the camera rotates the sensor? Normally it shoots in the land scape orientation mode (i.e., when the shutter button is on top). To shoot in portrait orientation mode you need to rotate the camera 90 degree. Why is the sensor rotated then?
11-20-2013, 06:42 AM   #8
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I vote for the K-30 or K-50. For the extra few bucks they cost, it's very much worth it. Nobody Thinks they need a weather sealed camera until they Need a weather sealed camera. The other additional features are also great to have.

Black Friday is right around the corner, why not wait and see what deals pop up. I'm sure you can get a K-50 for a really good price.

11-20-2013, 06:50 AM   #9
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Paying $30 more to have DA L 50-200 with a less-capable body isn't worth it, in my opinion. You can find that lens used for under $50, and there are many better lenses out there.
11-20-2013, 06:59 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by shaX 07 Quote
Black Friday is right around the corner, why not wait and see what deals pop up. I'm sure you can get a K-50 for a really good price.
Your right but I don't think K-30 will be much cheaper then. $550 is already a low price for such a camera.
11-20-2013, 07:03 AM   #11
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Go with the K-30 if you don't plan to use eyefi-cards go with the K-30. The gyro is helpful for leveling and once you have it rotating manually will seem annoying. AF-points in the viewfinder is really helpful for focusing. Both have focus peeking and the same mount, the only thing with the firmware is that the K-500 got the full eyefi support.
11-20-2013, 07:06 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by elliott Quote
The camera does it without cropping though, it rotates the sensor when you're taking the shot.
You mean the horizon leveling? I rarely use it but it's good. Having the images correctly rotated between landscape and portrait it a big help though.
11-20-2013, 07:11 AM - 1 Like   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by galaxytab Quote
Sorry, I couldn't get it. Why the camera rotates the sensor? Normally it shoots in the land scape orientation mode (i.e., when the shutter button is on top). To shoot in portrait orientation mode you need to rotate the camera 90 degree. Why is the sensor rotated then?
I was talking about horizon correction, if you're not holding the camera perfectly level it can correct for you by rotating the sensor a few degrees. The alternative done in post processing crops the edges off the image to achieve this rotation. It can come in handy if you do a lot of handheld shots. The level displayed in the viewfinder is nice as well.
11-20-2013, 08:46 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by galaxytab Quote
Your right but I don't think K-30 will be much cheaper then. $550 is already a low price for such a camera.
You'd be surprised. Also it might be offered in a bundle which would drive the price down. Example, the recent Adorama Bundle on the K50 that included a bag, card and $200 Gift card was only $696.95. If you subtract the $200 Gift card it was only $496.95 for all the other stuff. If you sold the bag for $50 you're down to $446.95. If you already had enough SD cards you could sell it for $30 and now you're almost below $400 for the Camera/lens.

At the very least I would wait 9 days just to be sure. Black Friday deals are only getting more aggressive every year.
11-20-2013, 08:52 AM   #15
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I bought a K-500 and returned it for a K-50 for the reasons everyone suggested. No auto-rotation was more annoying than I thought it would be, and I didn't realize how used to visible focus points I was until I didn't have them. Also, I don't have any WR lenses, but having the option is nice.

The 500 is a very nice camera; the 50/30 is just a little bit nicer.
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