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01-09-2015, 10:19 AM - 1 Like   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by jayman_1975 Quote
Just got my k3 in the mail yesterday..... It was one of two that I ordered from different places and the following applies to both copies so the lemon factor is not an issue here. I have turned off in camera NR exactly as I have done in my k5II. Having compared sample shots with the same lens (d fa 50 macro and da 50 1.8)

I can honestly say the k5ii produces noticeably sharper images.... Jpg out of camera. Now before everyone tells me not to shoot JPEG because of all the reasons, I can get really nice jpgs out of the k5II and I find it's easier than having to edit 1000 holiday pics. When I'm shooting for utmost quality i shoot raw. Are you telling me that the k3 is useless for shooting JPEG and if I want decent pics I have to shoot them all in raw with this camera? I bought this because I wanted better, faster autofocus but not at the expense of being able to kick out really good jpgs, which my k5II did a great job of.

Just a note, this was all done indoors with no flash and shooting at f3.2, 1/20 shutter speed and roughly 1000-1250 ISO. It was like a blizzard outside so I couldn't do any outdoor testing. I really hope things change with better light, but if that's the case then I don't see why everyone raves about the k3. I do have to say I really like the new button layout and changes to the user interface. If I can get this shooting like my k5II I can see I'll prefer it.

Last note, I checked lens focus and both the dfa 50 2.8 macro and the da 50 1.8 are dead on
A lot of us early adopters had the same impression. Do a search on this site and DPReview and you'll see many threads to that effect. One conclusion was that the noise reduction can be too aggressive. I leave mine off to 1600 and low from then. I don't shoot JPEGS above 3200 as the noise reduction algorithms in the camera aren't nearly as good as that in current purpose built software.
The other realization for me and it seems most of us was the need for better technique. Lastly there was recently some discussion on when to use SR. Should you turn it off then the maxim of using 1/focal length for shutter speed doesn't hold with this sensor. Likely it should be 2x that value eg instead of 1/300 for a 55-300 it should be greater than 1/600.
As to noise - the performance of the 24 mp sensor is almost identical to the 16 mp one. When viewed at the same relative magnification. View them at 100% and by 3200 it looks like the K5 series is better. It isn't really noise wise it just looks that way at 100%. But with current NR software the tradeoff in resolution allows (in my experience) sharper less noisy photographs from the K3 at any ISO over my K5.
Its a learning experience with the K3. Its an amazing camera.
To sum it up - to get the maximum out of the K3, use a good lens, calibrate with MF, use a tripod, do not use SR, use a remote with a 2 sec delay or mirror lockup, shoot raw and process with a good third party convertor with advanced NR algorithms. If this is not your style then shoot natural, bump up the fine sharpness, turn off the NR below 3200 low from there up, do not use SR above 1/50 sec, double the 1/focal length value, shoot spot so you know where the focus is, and try to use a technique that lets you hold it as still as possible. Lastly you could also take 3 shots in rapid succession and take the sharpest of the three.
Oh one last thing - the metering of the K3 is overly conservative. Generally I find I can shoot +0.7 or +1 and I won't blow anything important. Generally - you have to understand the characteristics of the camera and scene to be safe. The payoff is less noise.

01-09-2015, 11:07 AM - 2 Likes   #17
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You people are all awesome and I really appreciate everyone's input. I certainly do have a lot to learn about this camera and photography in general. I am at work now so I can't reply to all the comments but just a couple to touch on.

Firstly.... I realize that in the conditions I was testing that no photo will be super sharp....I did say that it wasn't as sharp as the k5II.

Motion blur due to higher resolution is almost certainly a culprit here, I moved the resolution to 14mp and there is instantly an increase in sharpness. I also noticed that I had the high ISO NR set to auto. I have now turned it to off and with these two new changes I am getting shots equal to my K5II possibly even sharper.....still all photos taken last evening in very low light.

I apologize for coming on and stirring the waters before I had all my I's dotted and T's crossed. I was quite happy with the final results I got and much look forward to learning more about this camera and getting te results you all talk about. Cheers
01-09-2015, 03:06 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by jayman_1975 Quote
I was so frustrated I just deleted everything. Tomorrow I'll do round two and get some examples

---------- Post added 01-08-15 at 09:50 PM ----------

So at 1/20 you think the SR. isn't cutting it? I can shoot to almost 1/10 with my k5II free hand. Seems like a step back. Guess I shoulda done my homework a bit better.
the different in pixel density reduces the Circle of Confusion. What that means, is exactly what Rockstarr pointed out. User error is magnified. Technique now becomes paramount and any failings on the part of the photog become highlighted. I have been shooting semi-professionally for almost 10 years and the K3 scared the bejeebers out of me the first time I took it for a test shoot. I had to clean up my act real quick. I even bought a monopod to go with my tripod.

The K3 is an unforgiving master, but you are rewarded richly for obedience.

PS- You MUST do lens calibrations for EACH lens as well, using the micro adjust function. I had almost no adjustments to my entire kit with a K5iis and I calibrated each one. I purchased a K3 and the adjustments now range from -8 to +9!!! I actually had to sell an FA28 because I couldn't get it to perform (not even close) with the K3 but it was quite happy on my K5iis.

Last edited by nomadkng; 01-09-2015 at 03:12 PM.
01-09-2015, 03:19 PM   #19
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This is a good discussion. I was also a little disappointed I when compared my K-3 images with the ones made with a K-5iis. <br />
<br />
Thanks to everybody for giving pointers on improvements.

01-09-2015, 03:27 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by maxxxx Quote
This is a good discussion. I was also a little disappointed I when compared my K-3 images with the ones made with a K-5iis. <br />
<br />
Thanks to everybody for giving pointers on improvements.
As one final note, I just recently purchased a 4K monitor. I can tell you definitively, the "keeper" K3 images blow away my "keeper" K5iis images at that resolution. My finished K3 images are all 5000px on the small side with a typical resolution of 7200x5000 at 300ppi. My k5iis images won't go any higher than 5400x3600 @ 300ppi. It's no contest. The K3 images are just "better", like "wow I need to go reshoot everything now" better.
01-09-2015, 04:08 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fauxton Quote
To sum it up - to get the maximum out of the K3, use a good lens, calibrate with MF, use a tripod, do not use SR
Is there anytime you do use SR? Right now I use it ALL the time on my K-5. I'm getting the K-3 tomorrow so it will be my first time shooting.
01-09-2015, 04:51 PM   #22
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It is difficult to get all the resolution out of the sensor unless you address all potential flaws. That does mean - if you want to pixel peep - you need to set a good lens to its maximum aperture performance (typically very near f/5.6), and use a tripod if (indoor) light is so limited. Really, all the tests have shown that the K-3 is going to provide considerably sharper results at low ISO, and a tad more noise at higher ISOs (but might be the result of far less smoothing). Any mistake will magnify, though.

What I am really digging now that I played with it some is the fact that using the on-board flash in M (dial in a ratio), a basic old Auto flash with optical slave trigger attached, and two basic modifiers (Demb on-board, LQ 80-20 for the external) - you can dial in some really sophisticated lighting arrangements without any effort at all. In this selfie, obviously I didn't even have to look at what I was doing! Take note of how the pantry shadows behind are nice and soft. And this can be done with no lag, no pre-flash, and every lens in the world that you can mount on the camera! Some very serious old-school licks. By the way, I seriously doubt my whiskers would be this sharp on any of the earlier generation bodies:
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PENTAX K-3  Photo 

Last edited by ScooterMaxi Jim; 01-09-2015 at 05:48 PM.
01-14-2015, 06:20 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by jayman_1975 Quote

I apologize for coming on and stirring the waters before I had all my I's dotted and T's crossed. I was quite happy with the final results I got and much look forward to learning more about this camera and getting te results you all talk about. Cheers
Don't feel bad....I did it too ! In fact I had a huge kettle of discontent Brewing with the K3.......but when it was done , and I got all the ingredients right ........What a wonderful stew.... !
Mmmm.....Tasty !

01-14-2015, 08:05 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by ScooterMaxi Jim Quote
What I am really digging now that I played with it some is the fact that using the on-board flash in M (dial in a ratio), a basic old Auto flash with optical slave trigger attached, and two basic modifiers (Demb on-board, LQ 80-20 for the external)
I really like that feature as well. I can dial down the on-board power, and I don't even need my wireless triggers in the studio using the slave function on the Alien Bees. I don't know why cameras haven't had this feature for years. Also, set a Metz 64 AF flash on Auto and Servo mode on a stand, and I can use either my K3 bodies or the Sony A6000 (with the Metz trained to ignore the Sony preflash).
01-14-2015, 02:08 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by ScooterMaxi Jim Quote
What I am really digging now that I played with it some is the fact that using the on-board flash in M (dial in a ratio), a basic old Auto flash with optical slave trigger attached, and two basic modifiers (Demb on-board, LQ 80-20 for the external) - you can dial in some really sophisticated lighting arrangements without any effort at all.
Please do enlighten (pun intended). I just got my K-3 and it is time to really learn how to use the flash.
01-14-2015, 03:15 PM   #26
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Hi Spodeworld,

It somewhat depends on the equipment you have, and the situations you'll be encountering. The ratio shooting on-board is great to fill-in for the dominant external flash. I use the Demb deluxe pop-up flip-it to soften that flash - and even get some coverage if there's a low, white ceiling. Using that with any external flash (auto-thyrister preferable) and an optical slave - such as the Wein HS shoe mount - works flawlessly (unless of course there are a bunch of others using flash in the immediate area - then you'll get some false discharges - and need to work with an alternative slave set-up - or wired connection). The modifier for the larger flash that I find especially useful and compact, is the LumiQuest 80-20 (can do bounce and direct modified as the situation allow).
01-14-2015, 05:28 PM   #27
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What I initially found was that I had a hard time shooting anything slower than 1/100 handheld when I got my K-3. I'm a bit better now that I've gotten a bit used to the camera, but the extra resolution (and no AA filter, since I came from a first generation K5) does have a noticeable affect on the output. I've not gone as far as turning SR off unless I'm on a tripod.

With regard to reducing resolution, which was referred to by the OP a couple of times. I don't think the solution is to turn the resolution in the camera down to 14 MP but rather to shoot your image at 24 MP and reduce the resolution outside the camera (Photoshop, Gimp, LR, etc). That will average some of the noise away and potentially be similar to your K5.
01-15-2015, 05:18 PM   #28
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This is really a good discussion. I owned a K30 and sold it to buy a Fuji XE1 with a set of lenses, now I am about to buy a K5 IIs or K3, budged is not the point here, I do really need a WR camera for outdoor and my doubts are about K5 IIs versus K3 and KIT 18-135mm WR or DA 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR or DA 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 ED SDM. I need to make a decision February, what do you guys say?
01-15-2015, 05:53 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by jotagustavo Quote
This is really a good discussion. I owned a K30 and sold it to buy a Fuji XE1 with a set of lenses, now I am about to buy a K5 IIs or K3, budged is not the point here, I do really need a WR camera for outdoor and my doubts are about K5 IIs versus K3 and KIT 18-135mm WR or DA 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR or DA 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 ED SDM. I need to make a decision February, what do you guys say?
I've owned the 18-135. Was not impressed. Get the K-3 and DA*16-50.
01-15-2015, 07:29 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by jotagustavo Quote
This is really a good discussion. I owned a K30 and sold it to buy a Fuji XE1 with a set of lenses, now I am about to buy a K5 IIs or K3, budged is not the point here, I do really need a WR camera for outdoor and my doubts are about K5 IIs versus K3 and KIT 18-135mm WR or DA 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR or DA 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 ED SDM. I need to make a decision February, what do you guys say?
Welcome back to Pentax. If budget and weight are not obstacles, then the higher end DA star lenses are the way to go. The pairing of the 16-50 and 60-250 will work very well. Frankly, between the 18-135 and the 18-270 there is so little difference in overall IQ, you can go with either one. Frankly, the 18-135 is somewhat underwhelming in this category, and the 18-270 is pretty good for what it is. Not saying that the 18-135 is as marginal as a 15-to-1, but the difference isn't as great as you'd expect. If your heart is set on the 18-135 length as a main lens, Nikon is the better way to go.

I suspect Jot is worried about weight and size. Then the 18-135 and 55-300 WRs are the best bets. You want to avoid using the 18-135 beyond about 75mm (it really is a bad lens long), so the pairing of these consumer lenses is pretty good.

If you are shooting 1600 ISO or above exclusively in AF half the time without any flash, then the K05IIs is your better choice. Shooting at normal ISO, shooting some flash, want to use manual focus, or understand that Live View is a valuable tool on occasion, then the K-3 is the far-better choice.

Last edited by ScooterMaxi Jim; 01-16-2015 at 10:54 AM.
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