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07-01-2015, 10:40 AM   #1
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Looking to upgrade my K-r

Hey guys, I'm back from a long hiatus from here, and photography in general.

Part of my dwindling interest in photograhy can be attributed to the horrendous focusing problems with the K-r, specifically in low, indoor lighting situations. So I would adjust the AF distance to compensate, things were still a little fuzzy. The next day, I would shoot outdoors, forgetting I had adjusted the AF, and then all my outdoor stuff was fuzzy. It has been very frustrating.

My wife has been very vocal lately about the fact that we have all these fantastic photos of our young children, but now that they're older, and my interest has faded, we only have phone pics. As an American, I'm subject to rampant consumerism, and I know that a new body will jumpstart things and get me back into the swing.

So, the K-50 looks like a great choice, and it's currently available for $300 from B&H. Are there any crazy focusing issues with this one, or anything else I need to know before jumping in?

Thanks!

07-01-2015, 10:48 AM   #2
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The AF is certainly much improved, but if you want the best you can get, look at the K-S2 which can focus in near darkness.

Adam
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07-01-2015, 10:57 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
The AF is certainly much improved, but if you want the best you can get, look at the K-S2 which can focus in near darkness.
Thanks for the tip, I'll definitely check that out. Price is much higher though. If I'm getting into that price bracket, I wonder if a K-3 wouldn't be a better choice. I still love the handling of my old K10D.

Last edited by lavascript; 07-01-2015 at 11:03 AM.
07-01-2015, 11:03 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by lavascript Quote
Thanks for the tip, I'll definitely check that out. Price is much higher though.
A new or used K-5ii or K-5iis would also have much better focusing. They are hugely improved even compared to the original k-5, which I found frustratingly bad at focusing in dark rooms.

07-01-2015, 11:13 AM   #5
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The k-s1 is a big upgrade from the k-r. Image quality is superb, viewfinder is fab, but otherwise it's very similar (arguably the grip is a bit crappy, but you can't win them all). As far as autofocus goes, it has an led for low light focussing (I know the k-x lacked this, I'm guessing the k-r did as well?). That puts the focussing system into the same bracket as the k-5. It's good (better than the k-x), but not as good as the k-3 or k-s2.

I'd suggest the k-3 or k-s2 if you are looking for weather sealing, k-s1 if you want good image quality, but don't mind k-r build quality.
07-01-2015, 11:16 AM   #6
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I vote for a k5-ii/s
07-01-2015, 11:21 AM   #7
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The K-50 is a solid camera, has everything the K-r has and some more (WR, slightly better noise performance, ...).
That said, the K-50 can be found on sale now because its the "old" generation. So you can get it for a really good price, but then again, you can buy the K-S2 or K-3II, which are the current generation. They are even better. Each generation has some improvements over the older ones. And you will notice some differences, definitely. It might not be super ground breaking, though - some people expect a huge improvement when they buy a camera, which is unreasonable.
07-01-2015, 11:29 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
The K-50 is a solid camera, has everything the K-r has and some more (WR, slightly better noise performance, ...).
That said, the K-50 can be found on sale now because its the "old" generation. So you can get it for a really good price, but then again, you can buy the K-S2 or K-3II, which are the current generation. They are even better. Each generation has some improvements over the older ones. And you will notice some differences, definitely. It might not be super ground breaking, though - some people expect a huge improvement when they buy a camera, which is unreasonable.
No, I don't expect anything groundbreaking. I just expect autofocus to FREAKIN WORK.

07-01-2015, 11:43 AM   #9
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Btw, did you ever update the firmware on that K-r? I think it may have a tungsten light improvement
And K-50 has bigger viewfinder, pentaprism not mirror, so it should be easier to tell when focus is right
07-01-2015, 11:45 AM   #10
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I went from the K-r to the K-5iis and have been extremely pleased since.
07-01-2015, 11:47 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
Btw, did you ever update the firmware on that K-r? I think it may have a tungsten light improvement
And K-50 has bigger viewfinder, pentaprism not mirror, so it should be easier to tell when focus is right
Yes, there was discussion on the forum about an upcoming firmware update to fix the focusing issues. There were updates, but none worked. One enabled a hotshoe GPS device, one added lens support, etc. I updated anyway, just to see, and there was no change.

Also, I've gone back and forth between my K10D's pentaprism and the K-r's pentamirror and don't see a significant difference.
07-01-2015, 12:05 PM   #12
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If you have the money to gte the K3 I say why not? It is a good camera.
07-01-2015, 12:19 PM   #13
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I had a K-x, which is almost identical to the K-r, and I never noticed any of the focusing issues you described. So maybe it was something specific to the K-r?

Anyway, even though I was very happy with my K-x, I upgraded to the K-30 when it was first released in 2012, and I was very pleased with the upgrade. It improved on everything my beloved K-x did. The low-light performance is really excellent. So if you'd like to save a little money, you could go with a K-30 or K-50, and probably be very happy. That would leave you more spending money for a lens upgrade.

Three years on, my K-30 is still going strong, and I feel no urgency to upgrade.
07-01-2015, 12:41 PM   #14
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The k-x was a great little camera, but the focussing was pitiful in low light. If you needed ISO 1600 and f2.8, you were just about on the border of the AF performance (sometimes ok, sometimes not). ISO 3200 with f2.8, and you'd need manual focus.

The K-5, k-30, k-50, k-S1 are only better due to the addition of a focussing light that kicks in at low light levels (otherwise it's the same system). It does make the AF usable in low light (although if you mount a 360gfz flash to the k-r, you'll gain that capability)

The K-5ii and K-S2 improve on this with -3ev vs -1ev as their lower limit (before led is needed).

The k-3 goes from 11 focus points to 27.

If AF performance is that important, go for the K-3. Otherwise the k-s2, or k-s1 if you're on a budget.
07-01-2015, 01:02 PM   #15
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Man... y'all are really pushing me toward considering the K-3. Especially with B&H's free BG-5, I love the feel of a vertical grip.
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