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12-08-2014, 06:37 AM   #1
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Lenses for K-3

So, I'm talking with my Nikon friend who has a D600, and I mentioned that I'm close to ordering a K-3 as an upgrade to my K-5. He immediately says that 24MP on APS-C is too much for my lenses, and I don't have the glass to handle the increased resolution. Now, I've read a ton of K-3 reviews and I know how my lenses perform on my K-5, and I don't have any reservations that I will see the increased resolution in my images. At this point I am taking his comments with a huge grain of salt... but I'd like other opinions.

You can see everything I own in Pentax mount in my sig, but I primarily shoot my DA* 16-50 and DA* 50-135 "twins". I know that the 16-50 is a tad soft wide open at 16mm, but otherwise my copy is pretty damn sharp at all longer focal lengths and at f/3.2 and smaller at 16mm, when used on my K-5. When I don't blow the focus, of course.

Will I see the increased resolution with a K-3 with these lenses?

He is an FF or nothing kind-of-guy, especially after he got his D600. Which I kindly bought for him in the US and hand-carried it ~6000 miles. I do occasionally give him hell for his oil-sprayer, so perhaps this is his way of payback.

12-08-2014, 06:45 AM   #2
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I wouldn't think the two lenses you mentioned would have a problem. Even my 18-135 did better on my K3 then my K5, though I am sure the sensor out resolved the lens. All of my current lenses perform better on the K3 at pixel peeping range, so I wouldn't worry if you're happy, though personally I would get both longer and wider stuff than you have.
12-08-2014, 06:45 AM   #3
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Nah, he's nuts. Or just defending his FF purchase in his own head. The * series zooms are great. You could consider getting a ltd. prime though, that never hurts!
I think the bigger issue with the K3's higher resolution is that you may see your mistakes more clearly, and it apparently has less dynamic range than the 16MP sensor though I'm not convinced that's not a cropping issue. You shouldn't need to zoom down to pixel-peeping range with the 24MP images, it should give you a bit more working room to not crop so heavily.
12-08-2014, 07:02 AM   #4
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The DA* lenses can harness the power of the K-3 sensors to the fullest and then some. I've personally have been very impressed with the K-3 and the -F series prime combo both in terms of IQ and AF performance (I've tried the Pentax-F 50mm f1.4, -F 28mm f2.8 and especially the -F 135mm f2.8, -F 300mm f4.5.) The more powerful (class leading) screw-drive motor of the K-3 combined with the -F series primes achieves incredible AF performance. From my own personal experience my copy of the -F 300mm f4.5 will produce slight moire and false colors on bird feathers, which If I'm not mistaken happens when the detail of the scene exceeds the sensors pixel pitch (Not bad for a 20+ year old lens) Overall any DA* prime or zoom with proper technique will produce excellent results, but It's also important to not overlook the -F/FA primes and some zooms (non-pentax lenses like the Tamron SP line of zooms lenses, or the Sigma EX line and the new Art line are also noteworthy)

12-08-2014, 07:08 AM   #5
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you can check on DXO marks to see the resolution of your lens on K3 and on K5, normally the true Mpx will increase on K3 (not a big jump though)
12-08-2014, 07:18 AM   #6
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You will enjoy the K3 functionality, operational improvements and you lenses will be fine and give you many wow moments. Lots of photos I take with my K3 are better than what I was observing when I clicked the shutter!

With regard to your friends comments, most people make those sort of comments as part of just having an opinion, mostly without applicable knowledge, experience or fact base.......it's part of the human condition..... fills in the silences in time......can be entertaining........but only occasionally useful!
12-08-2014, 07:22 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
Nah, he's nuts. Or just defending his FF purchase in his own head. The * series zooms are great. You could consider getting a ltd. prime though, that never hurts!
I think the bigger issue with the K3's higher resolution is that you may see your mistakes more clearly, and it apparently has less dynamic range than the 16MP sensor though I'm not convinced that's not a cropping issue. You shouldn't need to zoom down to pixel-peeping range with the 24MP images, it should give you a bit more working room to not crop so heavily.
I might get a DA 15 Ltd at some point, but my next purchases will likely be the DA* 200 and DA* 300. I have a hard time justifying the DA 15 though, as there's little difference in FL to my DA* 16-50. If I compare apples-to-apples, the DA* 16-50 at 16mm & f/4 is sharp enough for my needs. So the DA 15 just buys me 1mm wider... honestly not that much. It would be a whole different case if there was a 12 or 14mm AF Ltd prime... but sadly there isn't.
12-08-2014, 08:00 AM   #8
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Go with your K3 purchase, you will be very happy with the step up from K5.
Your lenses are great and a future DA*200/300, especially the DA*300 f/4, will be awesome.
Enjoy!!!

12-08-2014, 08:22 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
Nah, he's nuts. Or just defending his FF purchase in his own head.
Agreed
12-08-2014, 08:44 AM   #10
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I'd go with " Your friend has been reading too much marketing info."
My favourite observation on this was from Imagin resources who at one point compared lenses of different qualities on a D7000 and D7100. A few notes. The average increase in resolution was in the 20 to 25% range, but, the "crappier" lenses did best. While the resolution gain on the good lenses was in the above range, some of the "bad" lenses increased their resolution as much as 60%. SO contrary to what you friends says, for some reason bad lenses can be helped more by a better sensor than good ones, and the K-3 will close the gap between them.

That being said, your lenses are excellent lenses, not bad lenses. In my tests I've shown that subject resolution on my DA860-250 and A-400, continue to increase when I use the HD DA 1.4 TC, and FA 1.7 TC. What that means to you, is that your lenses will continue to benefit from your K-3 sensor, at 1.7 times magnification. SO far from out resolving the lens, without a TC it isn't even pushing the limits.

In other words, what your friend said is absolute hogwash. Your lenses at least according to my best guess will continue to benefit from better sensors, at least up to 36 MP on APS-c. ( Except perhaps in the red spectrum, but breaking things down into different spectrums is a whole different issue. And you have to go to a much larger pixel size than FF to get your red spectrum back.)
12-08-2014, 09:44 AM   #11
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I've used DA* 60-250 on k-5 and k-3. Concerning this lens K-3 gives an increase in quality, images really become more detailed. I can hardly see it on 22 inch monitor full screen, but it's obvious on 100% zoom or on prints 40x60cm and larger.

Two useful consequences I've tried:
- No need making head-shots during wedding sessions - I just crop and get head-portrait in pp;
- Shooting staged portraits of group of people became stunning - all faces are visible.

For example, two shots are attached, one on K-3 + DA* 60-250/4 (60 mm), another on K-5 + DA* 60-250 (80 mm). Both shot at ISO1600. Both attached as 1024px. You can download at full resolution here.

Both - RAW, no PP just conversion.

K-5:
_IMG7885


K-3:
_IMG8882
12-08-2014, 10:15 AM   #12
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the K3 will make you a better Photographer and the new sensor resolves more with what ever glass you may be using...revealing bad technique or improper settings on the Body.
i am very satisfied after leaving NikonD5100 at the end of October for the Pentax K3...FPS and shutter Lag mean all the difference in my type of photography...K-3 is twice as fast as my old body with 3 times as deep buffer...make sure you put good glass behind it and you'll be happy-some lenses do not communicate well(old manual lenses) but that is another story about legacy glass...
Aloha
12-08-2014, 10:47 AM   #13
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Is it just me, or have we been hearing less about the Nyquist frequency lately?

I mention this because I have been working some with old lenses adapted to the Q. So, one of the sharpest shots I've ever taken was with the m50mm f/1.4 set somewhere around f/2.8 on the Q. If the K-3 (or some future APS-c body) matched the Q's pixel pitch, the resolution would be in excess of 150 mp. Not that I'm advocating that, and not that most exceptional (any?) lenses would be sharp enough away from the center to take advantage of that resolution. However, the Nyquist line seems conceptual, not a practical limit. The amount of increased sharpness once you pass that line declines, but most certainly does not vanish.

The point is not to say "all increased resolution is beneficial" nor that "all lenses benefit from increased resolution." However, lenses that are relatively free of aberrations and are decently sharp at 16 mp, probably will benefit from the relatively minor increased resolution. We are talking about the difference between about 4900 pixel width to 6000 - not earth shattering. Krusty is right - you're most likely to see improper technique magnified if you find a decline perceived image sharpness.

Last edited by ScooterMaxi Jim; 12-08-2014 at 10:49 AM. Reason: missing word
12-08-2014, 12:33 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by cbope Quote
his D600. Which I kindly bought for him in the US and hand-carried it ~6000 miles. I do occasionally give him hell for his oil-sprayer, so perhaps this is his way of payback.


I think some of that oil seeped into his brain! Don't listen to him.



But for the most part, I wouldn't get it for its increased resolution, I'd get it for its other benefits. Since you're on a K-5 (and not a II/IIs) the jump will be significant. And the lack of AA filter is just as important as the resolution itself. It will be good with your DA* zooms.


BTW, after 6000 miles you must have worn out a few pairs of shoes. I hope you billed him for them.
QuoteOriginally posted by cbope Quote
I might get a DA 15 Ltd at some point, but my next purchases will likely be the DA* 200 and DA* 300.
QuoteOriginally posted by Stavri Quote
I've personally have been very impressed with the K-3 and the -F series prime combo both in terms of IQ and AF performance (I've tried the Pentax-F 50mm f1.4, -F 28mm f2.8 and especially the -F 135mm f2.8, -F 300mm f4.5.) The more powerful (class leading) screw-drive motor of the K-3 combined with the -F series primes achieves incredible AF performance.
I agree on the screw drive lenses, particularly the F/FA135 and F*/FA*300.

But don't get the DA*200 and the DA*300. Just get a *300. I have no AF 200mm, only the K200/2.5. I use it when I want the look it gives, and don't mind MF. It's an excellent lens. But it's not part of my "standard" kit. I find the gap between the DA*50-135 and my F*300 is no problem.

All the *300s are excellent, so you can pick any one:

- The F* has the best IQ IMO, and it's the smallest and lightest (which is nice for hand-holding), with the advantage of a built-in hood. And unlike the FA*, it has a tripod collar, although because of its light weight it's seldom used by many of us. It's downside is many spare parts are difficult to find, should it need repair. So make sure your copy's good.

- The FA* is the least expensive. It has IQ between the other two. It's kind of a big compromise between the other two - but that isn't necessarily a bad thing.

- The DA* has a little lower IQ than the other two, but it has WR, a slightly faster aperture, and is available new. It's also the heaviest of the three. But if you need the WR or some other advantage it has, the images are quite excellent. They just don't capture my attention as much as F*300 images do.


So 200mm isn't generally enough of a jump from 135mm, plus the *300s have higher IQ than the *200s. They're all excellent - but pick a *300.

Last edited by DSims; 12-08-2014 at 12:57 PM.
12-08-2014, 12:52 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by DSims Quote


I think some of that oil seeped into his brain! Don't listen to him.



But for the most part, I wouldn't get it for its increased resolution, I'd get it for its other benefits. Since you're on a K-5 (and not a II/IIs) the jump will be significant. And the lack of AA filter is just as important as the resolution itself. It will be good with your DA* zooms.
I'm actually not buying it for the increased resolution, but for the features missing on my K-5, such as more accurate and decisive AF, improved white balance and metering, focus peaking, etc. I'd be perfectly happy if it had the same 16MP sensor of the K-5 IIs or perhaps a 20MP filterless sensor that performed like the 16MP Sony sensor.
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