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07-03-2020, 07:37 AM   #1
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New KS-1 Owner- My First DSLR

Hi there all,

I've seen all the blurb dissing the KS-1 over so many other options- but loved the images and the camera size/colour combos so took the plunge and got what I felt was an awesome deal on a brand new one.

It's showing firmware 1.20, is this the latest? Is there much point updating?

I've a few other wonderful newbie questions to ask:
  • Can you have the lens set to A mode and have the camera on M- will this cause any issues/vice versa?
  • I've been using a Panasonic GF3 and some Nikon lenses over the last 5 years, which I enjoyed and got a feel for finding my own focus- this seems a step up in control options! Any top tips on settings?
  • Lastly, looking at hunting some lenses- any vintage or low cost pancake/low light and macro recommendations?

Hope to post some images once I've got out and about with it

Keep well all and cheers for any replies.

07-03-2020, 07:55 AM   #2
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Welcome! The K-S1 has what I consider to be one of my favorite sensors.
It pairs well with the DA Limited lenses. You can get good used deals on older SMC copies. The DA 21, 40 and 70 Limited are pancakes. The 15 and 35 are a bit larger but not too large. I have the 35 which might be the best all around. It also happens to be a macro lens.

The "Plastic Fantastic" DA 35 and 50 are also very good optically and are inexpensive.

If you are looking for real cheap, the SMC-M 50mm f1.7 is a manual lens that is wonderful optically and is almost a pancake. There's a whole lot of old manual and AF lenses available so make sure to look at the user reviews on this site!
07-03-2020, 07:58 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by CedrusMacro Quote

It's showing firmware 1.20, is this the latest? Is there much point updating?

I've a few other wonderful newbie questions to ask:
  • Can you have the lens set to A mode and have the camera on M- will this cause any issues/vice versa?
  • I've been using a Panasonic GF3 and some Nikon lenses over the last 5 years, which I enjoyed and got a feel for finding my own focus- this seems a step up in control options! Any top tips on settings?
  • Lastly, looking at hunting some lenses- any vintage or low cost pancake/low light and macro recommendations?

Hope to post some images once I've got out and about with it

Keep well all and cheers for any replies.
Firmware is up to date: Latest PENTAX K-S1 Firmware Update : Software Downloads | RICOH IMAGING

Using an A series lens set to A while shooting in M mode is fine. Keep the lens on A and use camera dial to set aperture. I can't recall if the ks1 has two dials, the manual may help here. The chart linked below shows what each type of lens can do on what body. I personally prefer to use Av (aperture preferred) mode and exposure compensation over M (Manual) mode most of the time and TAv is something a lot of users love as it offers manual like control with automation.
The Pentax Camera Lens Compatibility Chart
07-03-2020, 10:34 AM   #4
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Thanks for the quick responses guys, always nice as a new forum member.

Cheers for the lens suggestions, I'll be off on eBay to scout some prices and the forum sale section.

Great to know it's cool to us A mode on the lens with M controls- I'll get used to the more technical language as I become familiar with the ks-1.

I'll hope to get some images up later this week. I'm a tree nerd (teach Arboriculture) so likely to be some plant images.

07-03-2020, 11:31 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by CedrusMacro Quote
Hi there all,

I've seen all the blurb dissing the KS-1 over so many other options- but loved the images and the camera size/colour combos so took the plunge and got what I felt was an awesome deal on a brand new one.

It's showing firmware 1.20, is this the latest? Is there much point updating?

I've a few other wonderful newbie questions to ask:
  • Can you have the lens set to A mode and have the camera on M- will this cause any issues/vice versa?
  • I've been using a Panasonic GF3 and some Nikon lenses over the last 5 years, which I enjoyed and got a feel for finding my own focus- this seems a step up in control options! Any top tips on settings?
  • Lastly, looking at hunting some lenses- any vintage or low cost pancake/low light and macro recommendations?

Hope to post some images once I've got out and about with it

Keep well all and cheers for any replies.
If you fancy some cheap glass you could get an M42 adapter (there are two types, well, three if you count the flanged one but you will find guidance here) and then you can go nuts buying screw mount lenses. They are great fun to use and can be really cheap. Macro lenses can be more expensive but you can always get some extension tubes. Many cheap lenses out there were the original kit lenses that came with cameras but they are often quite quick (f1.7) and many are very very sharp. My cheapest lens was 5 and my oldest is from 1958. Wide lenses can be expensive but 28mm, 35mm, 50mm, 55mm, 135mm & 200mm primes are pretty easy to come by. One word of advice though. On Pentax Forums we have a massive database of user reviews. Where possible check before you buy. Enjoy and welcome to Pentax forums
07-04-2020, 10:12 AM   #6
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Original Poster
Cheers Cerebrum, I'll be looking to get the adaptor as well

Can't wait to get some better weather to get out and take some snaps- it's been fun messing with the camera indoors, but nothing worth posting.

(I've found the reviews and got lost in them reading the in-depth lens ones!)
07-04-2020, 10:52 AM - 2 Likes   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by CedrusMacro Quote
I've seen all the blurb dissing the KS-1 over so many other options - but loved the images and the camera size/colour combos so took the plunge and got what I felt was an awesome deal on a brand new one.
There is zero reason to diss the K-S1 at all, it is a masterpiece for what it is.

QuoteOriginally posted by CedrusMacro Quote
Can you have the lens set to A mode and have the camera on M, will this cause any issues/vice versa?
No, not at all, you just have to remember that you have only 1 dial instead of 2 dials with the K-S1 and thus you have to press the Av button to change from aperture-setting to exposure/shutterspeed setting.

Actually not only in M-Mode but also in Tav-mode (which I would always prefer)


QuoteOriginally posted by CedrusMacro Quote
I've been using a Panasonic GF3 and some Nikon lenses over the last 5 years, which I enjoyed and got a feel for finding my own focus - this seems a step up in control options! Any top tips on settings
P-Mode and Tav-Mode are Pentax special modes worth to get to know to.
P-Mode is a not quite as advanced with the smaller Pentax DSLR, the K7/5/3/KP have more packed in there but it still is worth to explore.
If you shoot JPEG-ooc than set Noice-Reduction at high ISO to custom settings and zero up to ISO 3200 and then small steps as ISO rises.

QuoteOriginally posted by CedrusMacro Quote
Lastly, looking at hunting some lenses- any vintage or low cost pancake/low light and macro recommendations?
Depends what money you want to spend.
The 28mm/f2 Kiron is a great prime with A-ring, the SMC Pentax A 35/f2 a great 35mm.
I don't like the M40/2,8 pancake, but both, the DA40/2,8XS and the DA40/2,8 limited are great.
Then as mentioned the DA21 and DA70, both not cheap. The DA20-40limited is a fantastic Zoom, one of the best.
The DA50 and DA35 match very well with the K-S1, so does the fantastic SMC A50/2,8 macro, light, small but amazing.

Otherwise, read through all the reviews here on the forum, people did great work there.


Last edited by photogem; 07-04-2020 at 11:59 PM.
07-04-2020, 01:32 PM   #8
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Thanks Photogem,

no diss meant on the KS-1, I think I was just looking for a lead in on the questions- I'm over the moon with it so far.

I''m currently devouring the review and sample sections and will check out the lens yourself and others suggested.
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