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03-16-2008, 09:31 AM   #1
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Very detailed neocamera K20d review

Neocamera have a detailed review of the K20d:

Pentax K20D Review | NeoCamera.com

Nice how they (literally) highlight the differences between the K20d and the K10d. Makes it very clear.

All in all a very positive review. The main drawbacks they point out are:
  • Most useless Live view mode ever implemented. Basically just digital white-balance and focus check. Probably was just implemented to give the camera the check-box feature because of consumer demand. (I remember reading in the John Carlson interview that he doesn't like live view and they just did it because "they can")
  • only 38 image JPEG buffer, compared to the unlimited 3 fps on the K10d
  • only 95% viewfinder, compared to the D300 and E-3's 100% viewfinder (K20d has a larger magnification though)
  • Annoying flashing "flash-recommended" warning indicator in the viewfinder
  • No more optional ISO warning in the viewfinder
  • Slightly undersaturated colors
  • Somewhat inconsistent shake reduction. Sometimes 4 stops, but other times not even 2.

Welcome new or improved features are:
  • 14.6 megapixels
  • Improved ISO noise up until ISO 6400 (roughly on par with other high-end D-SLRs and 2-stops better than K10d)
  • hue, tone and noise-reduction customization
  • 2.7" LCD
  • 20 fps burst most (1.5 megapixel)
  • focus fine tuning
  • Ability to use the directional pad's center button to swap between "shots remaining" and full-time ISO display in the viewfinder.
  • Much improved sharpness (the most serious criticism of the K10d) with the ability to very finely adjust sharpness with 9 coarse and 9 fine sharpening adjustment options (they recommend +2 fine sharpening)
  • Much better auto white-balance
  • Live view is useful for fine tuning white-balance
  • New low speed 2fps continuous shooting mode
  • Improved shake reduction which improves one's ability to hand-hold the camera by at least 2, commonly 3, and sometimes even 4 stops.
  • Small extra features: dead pixel mapping, dust alert, monochrome mode, interval mode, large text mode, one-push bracketing, 4-levels of noise reduction

Conclusion: Excellent (highest rating), although not recommended for an action photographer

03-16-2008, 09:45 AM   #2
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Thanks for posting this. It seems that the negativity nabobs notwithstanding the professional photographic press is liking the K20D!. See the post above on Ben K's "Chausseur d'Image"(sp?) review.

NaCl(good reviews are money in the bank)H2O

Last edited by NaClH2O; 03-16-2008 at 09:46 AM. Reason: spelling
03-16-2008, 10:04 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by NaClH2O Quote
Thanks for posting this. It seems that the negativity nabobs notwithstanding the professional photographic press is liking the K20D!. See the post above on Ben K's "Chausseur d'Image"(sp?) review.

NaCl(good reviews are money in the bank)H2O
And not one comment on the low Dynamic Range as iso100..... interesting...
Seems Pentax has got it right by getting the "artists" to review it first rather then the "tech heads".............
03-16-2008, 04:40 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by jms698 Quote
Neocamera have a detailed review of the K20d:
[*] Most useless Live view mode ever implemented. Basically just digital white-balance and focus check. Probably was just implemented to give the camera the check-box feature because of consumer demand.
Most Pentax NDA beta testers will never point out what the live-view feature should have because they, personally, don't need it, and therefore don't know what to suggest is expected in this year's live-view implementations. They'll just tell Pentax its "good enough", and will blow Nikon/Canon out of their socks.

Just a look at the $800 Canon 450D live view features on their 3" screen will give an idea what the $1200 Pentax should at least have.

03-17-2008, 08:27 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by mutley Quote
Most Pentax NDA beta testers will never point out what the live-view feature should have because they, personally, don't need it, and therefore don't know what to suggest is expected in this year's live-view implementations. They'll just tell Pentax its "good enough", and will blow Nikon/Canon out of their socks.

Just a look at the $800 Canon 450D live view features on their 3" screen will give an idea what the $1200 Pentax should at least have.
Will you ever shut up or go away Mutley? How much are you paid do spread your stupidity in theses forums?
03-17-2008, 11:48 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by mutley Quote
Most Pentax NDA beta testers will never point out what the live-view feature should have because they, personally, don't need it, and therefore don't know what to suggest is expected in this year's live-view implementations. They'll just tell Pentax its "good enough", and will blow Nikon/Canon out of their socks.

Just a look at the $800 Canon 450D live view features on their 3" screen will give an idea what the $1200 Pentax should at least have.
It appears you have found a new horse to ride: congratulations!


LV on any DSLR up to now sucks: personnaly, I don't care, but you have every right to find it unacceptable: point taken, now what do we do? Write a letter to Hoya's CEO?
03-17-2008, 04:08 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by mutley Quote
Most Pentax NDA beta testers will never point out what the live-view feature should have because they, personally, don't need it, and therefore don't know what to suggest is expected in this year's live-view implementations. They'll just tell Pentax its "good enough", and will blow Nikon/Canon out of their socks.

Just a look at the $800 Canon 450D live view features on their 3" screen will give an idea what the $1200 Pentax should at least have.
NO camera manufacturer has done Live View right yet in my opinion. Until it has tilt/swivel LCD, the Sony-style focus rather than contrast detect, and a high-res screen, and all these things without NEGATIVELY impacting on the performance of the viewfinder, battery life, sealing and so on, then Live View remains a stupid marketing gimmick to me. You'll notice Nikon and Canon don't do all of those things.

You have some sort of obsession with Live View. What use do you have in your photography style that warrants it? Serious answer please, don't go comparing features and prices between cameras, when in general, the feature is bloody useless. So, what do you shoot that requires Live View?
03-17-2008, 04:22 PM   #8
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"Most useless Live View ever implemented" - aren't they all? LOL Live View is for P&S cameras, and only needed on those because the damn viewfinders are too small.

"Only" 38 jpeg buffer?! The horror! That's more than an entire roll of film for us old timers. Quite frankly, if you feel the urgent need to fire more than 38 consecutive shots of the same damn thing at 3fps, (that's over 12 seconds of holding down the shutter release) there's a better tool for you - it's called a video camera.

Only 95% viewfinder - yes, 100% would be nice, but then you're comparing with a Nikon that's $500 more, and an Olympus that's 100% of...well... nothing (4/3)

All the customizations and features related to jpegs are all about nothing if you shoot RAW, so big deal.

20fps burst mode @1.5 megapixels? Again, use the right tool. (A video camera.)

Get us more fps (to get rid of the "not ready for sport shooters" label forever), better/faster autofocus (ditto), and a full frame sensor (so we can enjoy a nice big viewfinder that will make us permanently forget about the Live View "feature" ever being raised as a concern)...the rest of this stuff is just (pardon the pun) noise.

03-17-2008, 06:16 PM   #9
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I have used the LV a couple times and I have to say that no matter what camera I had, LV would get precious little use. The whole point of an SLR is that you get live view by looking through the viewfinder. Also, if you are hand holding the camera while using LV you are an (expletive omitted). I laugh when I see people taking pictures with their camera at arms length from their body. SR or no SR, that is how to get less than sharp photos.

Did Pentax do it wrong? Yes... they put it in. I know why they did it, and I understand it, but I don't really like it.
03-17-2008, 08:25 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Maxington Quote

You have some sort of obsession with Live View.
I have an "obsession" with if a feature is to be offered, don't offer it half-assed. Or almost good. Or "good enough". Or even the "worst implementation". Pentax designers are smart enough to know what's out there, and to get the software design right to display what info is helpful in live-view, rather than just decide to omit it all and have live-view just to say it.

Like you say, the problem with doing it the Sony way is a compromised 75% viewfinder. So, while retaining the full sized viewfinder, the best implementations include contrast detect AF, live histogram, and Exposure Simulation.

Articulating screen is a separate increased-cost issue that needs to be made equally weatherproof and durable. As useful as this feature would be, I can see it only for the pro-level Pentax, not the $1100-$1200 K20-K30D category we're talking about.

QuoteOriginally posted by Maxington Quote
What use do you have in your photography style that warrants it? Serious answer please, don't go comparing features and prices between cameras, when in general, the feature is bloody useless. So, what do you shoot that requires Live View?
I, personally, would use it if it worked in my favor for various applications. Macro shooting at ground level, or shooting overhead, my various studio applications that would lend itself to this along with showing up on the computer screen with Remote Assistant.

"Exposure Simulation" would be useful, of course, in giving a running idea of correct exposure, with the alternately useful method of a live-histogram.

Not big requests. Canon does all three in their $800 450D magnifiable to 10x (not 8), on their 3" screen.

Last edited by mutley; 03-17-2008 at 08:32 PM.
03-17-2008, 09:36 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mutley Quote
I have an "obsession" with if a feature is to be offered, don't offer it half-assed. Or almost good. Or "good enough". Or even the "worst implementation". Pentax designers are smart enough to know what's out there, and to get the software design right to display what info is helpful in live-view, rather than just decide to omit it all and have live-view just to say it.
You mean like the Canon 40D and its half-assed weather sealing? You don't want Live View, don't use it. You *will* get your camera wet at some stage. Thats a major flaw, not a gimmick missed or done badly.

QuoteOriginally posted by mutley Quote
I, personally, would use it if it worked in my favor for various applications. Macro shooting at ground level, or shooting overhead, my various studio applications that would lend itself to this along with showing up on the computer screen with Remote Assistant.

"Exposure Simulation" would be useful, of course, in giving a running idea of correct exposure, with the alternately useful method of a live-histogram.

Not big requests. Canon does all three in their $800 450D magnifiable to 10x (not 8), on their 3" screen.
Live histogram and so on are useful, but you can work around it. I'd like LV for the same reasons as you, low/high shooting, and without the tiltable LCD, its of limited appeal.

They included it in the 450D because its aimed at attracting newcomers from P&S cameras. The K20D isn't.
03-17-2008, 11:19 PM   #12
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"Most useless Live View ever implemented" - aren't they all? LOL Live View is for P&S cameras, and only needed on those because the damn viewfinders are too small.

"Only" 38 jpeg buffer?! The horror! That's more than an entire roll of film for us old timers. Quite frankly, if you feel the urgent need to fire more than 38 consecutive shots of the same damn thing at 3fps, (that's over 12 seconds of holding down the shutter release) there's a better tool for you - it's called a video camera.

Only 95% viewfinder - yes, 100% would be nice, but then you're comparing with a Nikon that's $500 more, and an Olympus that's 100% of...well... nothing (4/3)

All the customizations and features related to jpegs are all about nothing if you shoot RAW, so big deal.

20fps burst mode @1.5 megapixels? Again, use the right tool. (A video camera.)

Get us more fps (to get rid of the "not ready for sport shooters" label forever), better/faster autofocus (ditto), and a full frame sensor (so we can enjoy a nice big viewfinder that will make us permanently forget about the Live View "feature" ever being raised as a concern)...the rest of this stuff is just (pardon the pun) noise.
__________________

I like your thinking.

Last edited by AlanR; 03-17-2008 at 11:32 PM.
03-18-2008, 02:20 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by lol101 Quote
It appears you have found a new horse to ride: congratulations!
Well, the old horse is dead. No issues were fixed or tweaked on the K10D right until the very end. Pentax successfully denied everything, and blamed the user until the last screw was placed in the very last K10D produced. (though all is fixed in the K20D).

Now that there is some improved software to tweak the same Safox VIII AF, and various other firmware based features/improvements that can be beneficial to the K10D - a cut & dried final stunning proclamation gets declared stating there will be no more firmware updates for the K10D...ever.

Ridiculous.

But there will, of course, be a few that will purport that decree to be a phenomenal, in fact genius, business decision by Pentax (even though a firmware update for the K10D won't hurt K20D sales in the slightest).

Last edited by mutley; 03-18-2008 at 02:26 AM.
03-18-2008, 02:46 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by mutley Quote
Just a look at the $800 Canon 450D live view features on their 3" screen will give an idea what the $1200 Pentax should at least have.
Not sure how you can say that.

Have you seen the live view implementation on the $4K 1D MkIII ?

bazz.
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