Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
11-29-2013, 08:40 AM   #1
New Member




Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 23
Landscape/nature photographers only

I'm looking for some help from landscape/nature (no wildlife) photographers only.....I'm really torn between the new k-3 and the k-5iis. If you had to pick right now which one would you buy. At the moment I'm only working with JPEG because I don't have the tools to do much pp, eventually within the next few months I will have the proper tools to shoot raw. The feeling about the k-3 seem to be split down the middle with most people not liking the noise being produced. How we'll can the noise be cleaned up in pp.

Thanks in advance for any help.

11-29-2013, 08:53 AM   #2
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: London
Posts: 880
For your chosen subjects I'd have thought you'll be using a tripod, low ISO, etc so noise shouldn't be an issue at all. The K3 seems to be settling down as a camera that you have to work harder with to produce good images compared to the K5xx, but since both are fine cameras I'd go with whichever one you can get the best deal on, and right now it seems there are some great deals on K5xx bodies at B&H.
11-29-2013, 08:56 AM   #3
Site Supporter
NeverSatisfied's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: S.E. Michigan
Posts: 666
What body are you using now? If you're still using something like a K10D or K20D, right now I'd just go for today's screaming deal on the K5ii. (Good grief, just 10 months ago I paid double that price for my K5ii !) That'll save you a lot of money to go buy LightRoom or similar software, because you really owe it to yourself to shoot in RAW. Anyway, in my experience the K5ii at ISO 1250 is easily as noise-free as my old K20D at ISO 200; I've been very impressed. (LightRoom does a pretty decent job cleaning up noise, but for my type of shooting, I hardly ever need to worry about it.) So I guess it goes back to the question of what you're using currently, as to what you may expect when you buy one of the newer bodies.
11-29-2013, 09:07 AM - 2 Likes   #4
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Gladys, Virginia
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 15,744
QuoteOriginally posted by mgomez Quote
I'm looking for some help from landscape/nature (no wildlife) photographers only.....I'm really torn between the new k-3 and the k-5iis. If you had to pick right now which one would you buy. At the moment I'm only working with JPEG because I don't have the tools to do much pp, eventually within the next few months I will have the proper tools to shoot raw. The feeling about the k-3 seem to be split down the middle with most people not liking the noise being produced. How we'll can the noise be cleaned up in pp.

Thanks in advance for any help.
How big are you planning to print? That would be my question. I shoot a lot of landscape photography and the big difference that I see is that there is more resolution in the K3 photos. Noise really isn't a particular issue, since landscapes tend to be shot at low iso on tripod and stopped down.

That said, if saving money by getting a K5 II will allow you to get software for post processing and decent glass, I would get that one. Landscape photography really is more about light, subject and to a lesser extent glass, than it is about sensors.

K5 shot (not IIs).




K3 shot




11-29-2013, 10:18 AM   #5
New Member




Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 23
Original Poster
I was shooting with a nikon d5200 and I enjoyed the image quality but, I like the outdoors and love the weather resistance and durability of pentax. I've seen users of the k-3 often say that it's a camera that demands more.......I'm not not sure what that means. Also, the k-5iis seems to do much better in dynamic range. Is that very apparent between the two cameras in real life usage and how does it affect the flexibility in making changes during pp.
11-29-2013, 10:19 AM - 3 Likes   #6
Veteran Member
demp10's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Atlanta
Photos: Albums
Posts: 602
First things first:
  • You will need a sturdy tripod and a remote release.
  • Set the camera in 2sec timer mode (it will turn off SR) and will flip the mirror before the exposure
  • Set the mode to Av (or to manual)
  • Use ISO 100 (or 200 if you use highlight correction)
  • Stop down the lens to F8; you can use anything between F5.6 and F11, but F8 for most lenses is the sweet spot.
  • Auofocus is not particularly useful unless you center-point focus on a particular point in the scene, then switch to manual focus and not touch the camera afterwards (remember if you are using a zoom lens the focus will change if you adjust the zoom level and you will have to refocus).
  • Use Live view if possible to really nail focus.
  • Take several exposures and view the histogram to make sure you are not clipping highlights or shadows; use exposure compensation as needed (or switch to manual) until you nail the exposure.
  • ALWAYS shoot RAW. There is no way that you can capture perfectly a complex landscape scene with a JPEG that allows only 8 bit of color data; RAW will give you 14 bits (about 6 stops of additional dynamic range) to use in post-processing.
  • Use post-processing software to “develop” your images (Lightroom is one of the best) and learn how to use it to its full potential.
Regarding the equipment (which for most landscape work is less important):

Either camera can produce great results. You will not be able to see any differences in noise or dynamic range at ISO 100 or 200. Lens choices will be rather easy; most lenses perform quite well at F8. You will need a lens that is sharp throughout the frame and of a focal length that is appropriate for you setting. Primes will produce sharper images but zooms will give more flexibility. You can start with a zoom, then analyze your shooting habits and then get one or more primes centered to your most popular focal lengths.

The bottom line is that all things being equal, more megapixels will give you the flexibility to print larger and / or to crop the image and still have enough pixels left. Unless budget is tight, go with the K-3.
11-29-2013, 10:30 AM   #7
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Edmonton, Alberta Canada
Posts: 555
For landscape the K3 is the way to do due to the higher resolution and you will need to use a tripod and low ISO anyway. However, if you can pick up one of the deals on the K5II, you won't be disappointed.

Dale
11-29-2013, 10:46 AM - 1 Like   #8
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Tumbleweed, Arizona
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 5,091
I do landscapes and cityscapes in ambient low light (OK darkness). I have a K5 and like it a lot. It works well for my style. I have been following the rollout of the K3, along with the various reviews, with the obvious question of the K3 or K5IIs.

Over the last 7 years I have upgraded at every other model, passing over the K10 and K7. Also, I have only upgraded when there were significant capabilities that would provide specific benefits. So the K3 or K5IIs. In some respects I am thinking of neither - especially for the foreseeable future. My reasoning is as follows:
  • ISO - I really prefer the lower ISO, and the K5/K5II/K5IIs has ISO 80. In shooting at night, and needing to go to higher ISO, I can go to 3200 and stack with multiple shots to capture moonlight or starlight, the random noise is averaged out, thus having the result of shooting at a much lower value. Even at higher ISOs, the K5 base is quieter than the K3 from what I have read. I am going to stop down anyway using a tripod.
  • Resolution - It would certainly be nice, but so far I am very satisfied with the K5. A lot of the reviews call the K3 a landscaper's camera due to the resolution, and challenges Canon and Nikon - essentially being on nearly an equal footing with full frame. I pulled that from the review I watched yesterday. I went from the K100 to the K20 or 6MP to 14MP (133% increase). Then a couple of years later upgraded to the K5 which did not substantially increase the resolution but significantly reduced the noise. The K5 to K3 or 16MP to 24MP would be a 50% increase, with possibly a very slight increase in noise. After going from the K100 to the K20, I compared the shots on a very large screen TV and was amazed at how good the K100 was, when compared to the K20. I printed a 20" x 30" K5 image and was VERY satisfied with the result. I don't think I would print a 30" x 40" with the K5, although I have read that the K3 should support that size. So how large are you going to print?
  • Dynamic Range - I think for landscapes, dynamic range is possibly slightly more important than resolution. Going back to the K100 to the K20, I am still amazed with the K100. I think that it has a lot to do with the CCD to CMOS comparison, but larger pixels does help here in gathering and recording the light. I think that stopping down, with good glass, taking advantage of hyper-focal distance all contribute. So rolling all of this together, I would still go with the K5IIs.
  • AF - I usually shoot manual and have a lot of old manual lenses. When I do use an AF lens, its pretty nice to just let the camera do the work, I must admit. The better low light focusing in either the K5IIs or K3. The better white balancing would really help the K3. I saw a large difference in an early review.
  • AA - I have read very few (as in no) complaints about the K5IIs and moire. The 8% increase in resolution over the K5/K5IIs was called good but not compelling in a number of reviews. Users seem to put a lot more stock in seeing better resolution in the K5IIs and in use they find it worth the upgrade. Right now, if I absolutely needed to get another body - it would probably be the K5IIs.
  • Additional features - the K3 has a lot of additional features, focus tracking, higher frames per second, etc. that really do not matter that much for landscaping as in other types of photography.
Am I being just stupid and missing the boat. I don't know. Right now I am not feeling very compelled to do anything other than go out and take some more images. Perhaps, its just my lack of skill, technique or inability to see a great potential shot/image where others see tremendous opportunity.

So for me, I am going to continue with the K5. I have had it for 2 years now, and I can easily see using it for another 2. If I lost or damaged it, I would go to the K5IIs in a heartbeat. I do think that Pentax has hit a home run with the K5 family (K-01/K30/K50/K500/K5/K5II/K5IIs). I think the K3 is very worthwhile and appears to be an excellent body. I just do not feel the need - or perhaps I am just too cheap. For me its a hobby. If it were my bread and butter, putting a roof over my family's head, finding that extra bit of margin to make my images sell better - I might feel different - but then we would probably be talking a 654D.



11-29-2013, 10:49 AM   #9
Senior Member
scole's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 216
My camera path has been K10d -> K-5 -> K-3. Right now, I'm not blown away by the K-3. The K-3's most significant upgrades will largely benefit other shooters (sports, wildlife, etc) more than landscape shooters. Now, that's not to say that I'm not benefiting from the improvements to the screen, focus peaking, etc. I am disappointed that the high ISO performance isn't markedly better than that from my K-5. I'm not a big PP cropper so my advice is go for the K-5iis and perhaps apply the $$ difference towards the PP software or lenses.
11-29-2013, 10:58 AM   #10
Pentaxian




Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Arizona
Posts: 899
Either the K-3 or the K-5IIs are fine but why limit yourself to those. There are plenty of options-- Pentax 645 film series cameras, Pentax 6x7, 67 and 67II. But your ability is more important than the camera.
11-29-2013, 02:43 PM   #11
Site Supporter




Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Prince George, BC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,295
A question for landscape shooters that has nagged at me for a while: in a static shot with no wind where nothing is moving, why not use the averaging mode of the multiple exposure function of the recent K series cameras? This enables you to effectively get rid of all noise no matter which sensor is being used. I am assuming that the camera would be on a tripod, of course.

Jack
11-29-2013, 02:49 PM   #12
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Tumbleweed, Arizona
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 5,091
QuoteOriginally posted by jbinpg Quote
A question for landscape shooters that has nagged at me for a while: in a static shot with no wind where nothing is moving, why not use the averaging mode of the multiple exposure function of the recent K series cameras? This enables you to effectively get rid of all noise no matter which sensor is being used. I am assuming that the camera would be on a tripod, of course.

Jack
... as in bracketing? I use it a lot.

11-29-2013, 03:22 PM   #13
New Member




Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 23
Original Poster
Thank you everyone for your feedback, it's very appreciated! The only thing I don't get is, what makes a camera demanding as in the case of the k-3. On this site or on any other, it seems like no one can give a good explanation of this. This is starting to make me think that people that own the k-3 are not 100% happy with their purchase but instead trying to convince that they made a good purchase.
11-29-2013, 03:40 PM   #14
Veteran Member
demp10's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Atlanta
Photos: Albums
Posts: 602
QuoteOriginally posted by jbinpg Quote
This enables you to effectively get rid of all noise no matter which sensor is being used.

Jack


Processing an image, even if it was shot at 100 ISO, through a noise reduction software (like Topaz DeNoise) can produce spectacular results especially in large uniform areas like the sky and clouds where fine grain noise is always visible.


In the grand scheme, the camera contributes very little in the final image (assuming that you want a print). More than 70% of the effort will be in post processing and printing.
11-29-2013, 03:47 PM   #15
Veteran Member
robjmitchell's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Melbourne Aus
Posts: 1,144
QuoteOriginally posted by mgomez Quote
Thank you everyone for your feedback, it's very appreciated! The only thing I don't get is, what makes a camera demanding as in the case of the k-3. On this site or on any other, it seems like no one can give a good explanation of this. This is starting to make me think that people that own the k-3 are not 100% happy with their purchase but instead trying to convince that they made a good purchase.
Calling the K3 more demanding is consequence of the K3 being a more precise tool. More resolution means technical flaws are more apparent when pixel peeping (but not when viewed at the same image size)
More resolution also mean edge detail is finer and requires more sharpening when viewed at the same size.
That being said the jpeg engine needs some work,

Then there is the New camera issues that have nothing to do with the K3 but influence peoples initial opinion. ie the layout is different to their old camera and PP software has not updated yet to include K3 profiles.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
dslr, help, k-3, k3, noise, pentax k-3, photographers, pp, tools
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
One landscape lens only slip Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 28 02-24-2013 08:20 PM
Film choice for nature/landscape rickbehl Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 18 10-08-2010 01:30 AM
Landscape Mekong Delta-the nature landscape pentaxsaigon Post Your Photos! 8 04-26-2010 09:13 AM
Improvements for Landscape Photographers GeoffreyS Pentax News and Rumors 29 03-10-2008 12:56 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:32 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top