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01-25-2014, 05:32 AM - 4 Likes   #1
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K3 first impressions

Could no longer ignore the voices telling me that I "needed" a K3, and so last night got budget approval from the Minister for War & Finance and today handed over AUD1289 inc tax (about USD1130) and took the new baby home. Although I have taken a few shots to just see how things work, the first impression is that it is both more powerful and more complex than my K5IIS, but that additional power and complexity is handled really well in the menus and controls. I found that I couldn't easily trigger Live View (I wear glasses and that might help), and the only time I really saw something unexpected was when switching off the focus motor on a Sigma HSM lens reverted the camera focus back to MF - I thought I had lost one of the features of "Catch in Focus", only to then discover that CIF now works in Manual Focus mode.

I really like the new focus selection system. Now that I have got used to some of the dual-function controls, it all seems old hat already. I really like the one-touch bracketing. The quiet shutter is amazing. i didn't find a single thing that I didn't like in some way or another. From my perspective, it seems better in every way. Still a Pentax - feels like one, looks like one, the menus and buttons are right at home, but better.

I said "sorry" to my K5IIS as I removed it from the Sigma 500 f4.5 APO DG EX, and so tomorrow I am going to see what I can do with it.

PS Tomorrow, I also ned to change my signature tag.

01-25-2014, 07:22 AM - 1 Like   #2
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Have fun with the new K3 Adrian.

Dale
01-25-2014, 07:39 AM   #3
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Changes to Cif? Now that sounds very interesting! First time I heard about this, I assumed it was the same as in the K-5 (MF on lens, AF on camera body)
And I hope you post some photos once you get the hang of the camera, that setup sounds great
01-25-2014, 08:05 AM   #4
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So, I am assuming that your Minister for War & Finance is similar to my Chancellor of the Exchequer or "She Who can't be Ignored" (Rumpole of the Bailey - my wife is a fan of British humor)?

Enjoy the new camera!!!!



01-25-2014, 09:54 AM   #5
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I'm getting really envious of all you guys and gals picking up the K-3, but my "She Who Must Be Obeyed" nixes any upgrades. Might have something to do with the overdraft, I think.
01-25-2014, 01:55 PM   #6
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Who'd want to be a pentax body?

Built for long term momogomous relationships but mostly passed over for the latest pretty thing in town.

Poor k5IIs.....
01-25-2014, 06:04 PM - 2 Likes   #7
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A shot from this morning. All I can say is "Wow". The shot was taken at ISO 2000 at a range of about 5 metres. I have applied no noise reduction outside the camera (in-camera noise reduction has been left at Auto), although a bit of background reduction might help for pixel-peepers. Normally on the K5IIS, this shot would have been limited to ISO 640 to not require noise reduction or ISO 800 if I wanted to reduce background noise, so that is a huge step up. Love the focus, love the lack of noise, love the tone of the shot, and love the sharpness. And if it makes male Variegated Fairy-wrens jump in front of the lens, then that is good too.

As far as post-processing went, Lightroom 5.3 and Photoshop CS5 didn't miss a beat, but some actions are quite obviously slower with the larger file size. PhotoME wouldn't behave to save the Exif data (it just crashed every time i tried), but it did provide a full read-out on screen.

The gear: Pentax K-3, Sigma 500 f4.5 APO DG EX, tripod, Metz 58AF-2 flash, Better Beamer FX-3

The settings: TAv mode, 1/500th, f6.3, bias -1, ISO 2000, centre-weighted exposure, Centre 9 focus, flash in PTTLHSS mode at -2/3EV

Post-processing Lightroom 5.3 and Photoshop CS5: Crop to 3799 by 2566, Reduce flash highlight in eye, Resize to 1000 by 667, sharpen, auto-contrast.

The subject: Male Variegated Fairy-wren, not in his full mating colours (which usually has a full bright blue head).
Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-3  Photo 

Last edited by AdrianM; 01-25-2014 at 06:05 PM. Reason: typo
01-25-2014, 07:13 PM   #8
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Hi Adrian ,
You are killing me by posting this relatively noise free shot using the K3 . I was debating the upgrade and this type of example is showing me some of the excellent qualities that the camera is capable of in the real world . Show me more when you get them and Pentax could have another K3 shooter . Nice alert pose the little eclipse Wren is putting on for your new camera . Nice mini review of your first impressions of the camera .
Regards Anthony .

01-25-2014, 07:15 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by AdrianM Quote
A shot from this morning. All I can say is "Wow". The shot was taken at ISO 2000 at a range of about 5 metres. I have applied no noise reduction outside the camera (in-camera noise reduction has been left at Auto), although a bit of background reduction might help for pixel-peepers. Normally on the K5IIS, this shot would have been limited to ISO 640 to not require noise reduction or ISO 800 if I wanted to reduce background noise, so that is a huge step up. Love the focus, love the lack of noise, love the tone of the shot, and love the sharpness. And if it makes male Variegated Fairy-wrens jump in front of the lens, then that is good too.

As far as post-processing went, Lightroom 5.3 and Photoshop CS5 didn't miss a beat, but some actions are quite obviously slower with the larger file size. PhotoME wouldn't behave to save the Exif data (it just crashed every time i tried), but it did provide a full read-out on screen.

The gear: Pentax K-3, Sigma 500 f4.5 APO DG EX, tripod, Metz 58AF-2 flash, Better Beamer FX-3

The settings: TAv mode, 1/500th, f6.3, bias -1, ISO 2000, centre-weighted exposure, Centre 9 focus, flash in PTTLHSS mode at -2/3EV

Post-processing Lightroom 5.3 and Photoshop CS5: Crop to 3799 by 2566, Reduce flash highlight in eye, Resize to 1000 by 667, sharpen, auto-contrast.

The subject: Male Variegated Fairy-wren, not in his full mating colours (which usually has a full bright blue head).
careful with that auto noise reduction - see K-3 Problem? Redemption or Not... (or just google K3 Redemption}
01-25-2014, 08:09 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by PENFRED Quote
careful with that auto noise reduction - see K-3 Problem? Redemption or Not... (or just google K3 Redemption}
Thanks for the tip - I have removed in-camera NR for the next step in the journey.

Here is a shot of my bird kit (taken with a K5IIS):
Pentax K-3
Sigma 500 f4.5 APO DG EX
Metz 58AF-2 flash
Better Beamer FX-3
Really Right Stuff medium flash bracket with fixed angle flash attachment
Nissin flash cord
Wimberley gimbal head
Sunwayfoto DB-52 ball head
Gitzo 3531S carbon fibre tripod
Lenscoat on tripod and lens
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PENTAX K-5 II s  Photo 
01-25-2014, 08:24 PM   #11
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How is the Catch-in-focus feature different from the K5/K5IIs ?
Did you use the CIF with this shot? In manual mode, if you did, right?

JP

Edit: just saw your last post to Na Horuk ... I am still confused.
01-25-2014, 08:26 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
Changes to Cif? Now that sounds very interesting! First time I heard about this, I assumed it was the same as in the K-5 (MF on lens, AF on camera body)
And I hope you post some photos once you get the hang of the camera, that setup sounds great
I did some checking on CIF just now to make sure I understood what was happening. The difference is that the camera now reports (on the Info screen) that it is in MF mode when the HSM/SDM focus motor is turned off. The only other setting difference is that CIF works in both AF.A and AF.S on the K3. As before, CIF doesn't work when the camera is set to MF or AF.C.

I have posted a photo of my setup.
01-25-2014, 08:27 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
How is the Catch-in-focus feature different from the K5/K5IIs ?
Did you use the CIF with this shot? In manual mode, if you did, right?

JP
See previous post. On further checking, it is just that the camera reports that it is in MF mode when the focus motor in the lens is turned off.
01-25-2014, 08:46 PM - 2 Likes   #14
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Another shot from this morning. Same settings as previous shot of the Variegated Fairy-wren, but this time at ISO 2500. On this shot, I did some noise reduction on the background (but not on the bird). I'm very happy with the level of detail, so if there are problems with detail reduction from in-camera NR, then it doesn't seem to be significant as there is lots of detail here.

Female Superb Fairy-wren.
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PENTAX K-3  Photo 
01-25-2014, 08:48 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
How is the Catch-in-focus feature different from the K5/K5IIs ?
Did you use the CIF with this shot? In manual mode, if you did, right?

JP

Edit: just saw your last post to Na Horuk ... I am still confused.
The difference is in how the camera reports its status - the K3 says it is MF when the lens motor is turned off even though the camera settings are still AF. Otherwise, it works just the same as before (with the addition that it can be AF.A as well as AF.S).
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