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07-23-2009, 03:49 PM   #1
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Photo Review Australia on the K7

I don't think this has been posted here yet (did a couple of searches, please delete the topic and apologies if I'm wrong):

Photo Review Australia K7 Review

Not going to go into much detail here, as I'm working on a report and high on caffeine, so my evaluation (and reading comprehension) might be a tad off, but some highlights are:

- They were impressed by the body and variety of advanced features available.

- Complained about AF speed. The reported high shutter delay was a bit worrying.

- They complain about the continuous shooting speeds not being up to scratch - or rather that the bursts they could take were only 4 shots or so. At the same time they report that the shot-to-shot speed was 0.1sec, which would make it 10fps? (I'm assuming they are not including the actual exposure time in their evaluation?)

- They report poor high ISO performance and the sensor resolution being "below expectations for a 14MP camera" (whatever is that supposed to mean? poor sharpness? contrast?)

- Vertical colour banding seen in video mode

- The conclusions are also more than a bit odd (buy this camera if "You want the option of shooting raw files"... seriously?)

- They are really poor about reporting methodology and make strong statements without specifying details. Some of the measurbatory charts might be interesting to pore over if that's your kind of thing.

Overall, I'm expecting you guys to rip this apart within minutes, the pixel-peeping wolf-pack you are
Seriously though, some of the points in that review are quite odd, and it would be nice to see what you lucky early adopters think of all this.


Last edited by PolishMike; 07-23-2009 at 04:44 PM. Reason: typo
07-23-2009, 04:43 PM   #2
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good grief

I love the bit where they take an image in available light 'in near darkness' and then proclaim that it's not very good....well duh!
07-23-2009, 04:54 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by davebris33 Quote
I love the bit where they take an image in available light 'in near darkness' and then proclaim that it's not very good....well duh!
A cursory glance reveals that they do not include such shots for Nikon cameras they tested... fancy a guess at where their bandwidth money is coming from...

(I can see myself becoming quite good at this Pentax apologist shtick )

It has to be said, as much as that picture is quite obviously shot specifically to look bad, that banding is not pretty.
07-24-2009, 04:43 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by PolishMike Quote
- They complain about the continuous shooting speeds not being up to scratch - or rather that the bursts they could take were only 4 shots or so. At the same time they report that the shot-to-shot speed was 0.1sec, which would make it 10fps? (I'm assuming they are not including the actual exposure time in their evaluation?)
Becausestupid enough to disable in-camera lens corrections. A bunch of incompetent idiots, at best...

07-24-2009, 05:03 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by thibs Quote
Becausestupid enough to disable in-camera lens corrections. A bunch of incompetent idiots, at best...
Ah, that would explain it. Should have made the connection myself really. I assume this was an honest mistake - lens correction is on by default, and it's not obvious it would cause buffer problems. Maybe someone should get in touch with the site and see if they would be willing to re-test...

Then again - Pentax are not too upfront about admitting that using one of their new flagship features (lens correction) essentially breaks another key feature (improved buffer and FPS).
This is something I'm actually quite disappointed about - I realise that processing time is needed to correct in-camera JPG, but I would expect that an option for the correction parameters associated with a given lens to be simply written as metadata into RAW files for later off-camera processing - best of both worlds.
07-25-2009, 07:37 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by PolishMike Quote
This is something I'm actually quite disappointed about - I realise that processing time is needed to correct in-camera JPG, but I would expect that an option for the correction parameters associated with a given lens to be simply written as metadata into RAW files for later off-camera processing - best of both worlds.
Well, yes, I was surrised when I saw that. At the same time, it is like noise treatment, better done on the PC than automaticaly by the camera. Still annoying IMO.
07-25-2009, 12:06 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by PolishMike Quote
A cursory glance reveals that they do not include such shots for Nikon cameras they tested... fancy a guess at where their bandwidth money is coming from...

(I can see myself becoming quite good at this Pentax apologist shtick )

It has to be said, as much as that picture is quite obviously shot specifically to look bad, that banding is not pretty.
LOOK, face it. Like in Politics there are some very powerful forces that can assist in convincing journalists and editors alike to make some subtle changes to their testing procedure as well as their "OBJECTIVE" conclusions.

Money IS power and power often corrupts.
07-25-2009, 01:20 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
Money IS power and power often corrupts.
Oh, I couldn't agree with you more.

My comment may have been tongue-in-cheek, as I don't think that the review site in question is actually being funded by one of the big brands, and have no particular desire to prove such an arrangement - I think it's just a sloppy review, like most stuff online these days.
I'll let others draw serious conclusions from the fact that they include a "straw man" pitch-black scene as an example of high-ISO noise seemingly in this review only.

(And I couldn't help but take a friendly jab at the fiercely defensive and accusatory reactions most Pentaxians have to any negative comment on their beloved brand )

07-25-2009, 10:44 PM   #9
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Video. It's a nice feature - gimmick, if you will - in a DSLR. Now, unfortunately, because everyone has it, it must reviewed as if it's a vital and necessary function of a freaking stills camera.

It's like debating the comfort of waterboarding. How well a microwave oven works at the bottom of the sea. Friggin' pointless.

QuoteOriginally posted by PolishMike:
I think it's just a sloppy review, like most stuff online these days.
Sigh. Exactly. Anyone with a computer, website space, and no clue whatsoever is a reviewer. No, I'm not to whine about it being "Pentax versus the world!" as it happens with virtually every review or "news" website out there, with the exception of a few - check out Wired's reviews on anything. People exercise complete and often wilful ignorance in reviews and other online articles, because that's what the net's for, right? A shiny, fuzzy-warm place where you get points for trying, not for succeeding!

Just because it's on a website that has "news" in the URL doesn't mean it's journalism...
07-26-2009, 02:14 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by PolishMike Quote
I think it's just a sloppy review, like most stuff online these days.
I agree, but i don't think it's just the net that has gone sloppy. I've been reading photography magazines for about 4 years and i've never read a proper, in depth article that is actually willing to make a significant conclusion at the end.

Car/yacht magazines are willing to test a product and make a statement at the end based on their results, regardless of how much the statement annoys manufacturers... Camera mags on the other hand just seem to regurgitate sales brochure 'facts' and industry reputations. Ie. "Pentax has slow AF" "Olympus has poor high-ISO". They very very rarely say outright that a camera is crap.

With the exception of DPR and Luminous Landscape i don't know of any reviewers who actually base their conclusions solely on their testing.
07-26-2009, 03:36 AM   #11
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All the big Aussie mags have biases, and even in the reviewers who tested the cams without preconceived notions about a particular brand, there's bound to be a 'fault' to be found as a result of inappropriate usage.

Complaining about the K-7's AF speed is quite short-sighted.
Complaining that there was a high shutter lag is ludicrous - the time between mashing the shutter release button and the camera taking the shot is misinterpreted by many people as 'shutter lag'.

What does poor high ISO performance mean? How did they measure this? If the K-7's bad, then most other dSLRs would be bad too...

The expectation that people want to shoot only JPEGs confirms that this particular reviewer doesn't quite comprehend the capabilities of the K-7, or many other dSLRs for that matter.

It gives me more than enough reason to avoid Photo review altogether...
07-26-2009, 05:12 AM   #12
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What sucks is that all the Aussie camera mags I can find here are just AVHub.com.au reprints. They swap reviews and contents between each different magazine they run. I once bought four, I think, mags that were from the AVHub.com.au stable - it turns out I only needed to buy the first three, as the fourth one was entirely made up of content that was in the others.
07-26-2009, 06:03 AM   #13
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The expectation that people want to shoot only JPEGs confirms that this particular reviewer doesn't quite comprehend the capabilities of the K-7, or many other dSLRs for that matter.



Exactly. I'm a bit unsure why anyone would spend $1300 US (plus lenses) and want to shoot JPEGS.
07-26-2009, 06:40 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by stanleyk Quote
Exactly. I'm a bit unsure why anyone would spend $1300 US (plus lenses) and want to shoot JPEGS.
It's one of the things that annoys me about DPR write-ups - the impact of in-camera JPG output on the final conculsions. They have 20 pages of sensor-related technical minutiae that only pixel-peepers or people wanting to print photos on the side of a building will ever notice, and then list "poor colour rendition of in-camera JPG" as a deal-breaker in the conclusions. They should have two reviews - one for pros/enthusiasts and one for "consumers" (and I utter the term the way Stalin might spit out the phrase "capitalist pigs").

I wouldn't mind an SLR which did not have a JPG option at all, and I'm sure a lot of photographers would agree with me. People are willing to switch systems these days to get an extra 0.5 f-stop of dynamic range. It is just daft not to shoot RAW considering the 1.5-2 stops of headroom it usually gives (and the price of memory these days).

EDIT: Also, why has jpeg2000 not been adopted by any camera manufacturer. It's batter for pictures in every way, as far as I can tell.
07-26-2009, 05:26 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by PolishMike Quote
EDIT: Also, why has jpeg2000 not been adopted by any camera manufacturer. It's batter for pictures in every way, as far as I can tell.
I understand Microsoft is working on it, it is the underlying tech of their HD still format I believe.
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