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12-28-2013, 06:31 AM   #1
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Greetings from India!!

Hello from the land of Canikons. (In India, even Sony NEXs or SLTs are a rare sight. Presumably, Canon and Nikon have the 99% prosumer market covered.) Though Ricoh has entered the scene, Pentax equipment is nowhere to be seen on any online shopping sites like Amazon India, Flipkart, or on the shelves of photography stores. Hopefully, that will change soon as Ricoh gets time to build their network here. Meanwhile, new Pentaxians like myself have no choice, but to order our stuff from the US. After much contemplating I had decided to buy a Canon 600D as my first DSLR since it was priced aggressively at INR 35K ($575) including two lenses 18-55 and 50-250 IS zooms. I thought that was a sweet deal. In my budget, the only other choice at that time was Canon 60D, and while going through YouTube reviews of the same, I came across a sort of a comparison review where the guy was talking about a Pentax K-5. Further research led me to change my initial decision, and I decided upon K-50 since the weather-sealing as well as the limited lenses seem a great trade-up from the boring EF-S line up. I was all set to buy a K-50 on Black Friday when K-5 II prices were slashed down to $599, and I was again put into a dilemma.

Finally, I decided to take the plunge and buy a K-5 II from B&H and would you believe it? They refused to accept my credit card! (It was Visa, buy maybe they don't accept cards from some countries.) I was so mad at missing out on the Black Friday deal. I couldn't believe this was happening to me after months of researching for that perfect first DSLR. As I was cursing my luck and scurrying over Amazon deals at 1 in the night, I noticed a K-5 listed as Warehouse Deals for $424. I was really very confused at this point. I wasn't sure what to do, going with K-5 was investigating in a 3-years-old model. Also, a Warehouse deal meant that it was a second-hand or an open-box returned item. Either that or I could go with my previous choice K-50. But I was never into video much, I was more drawn to still photography. And I was anyway not going to get a warranty here in India, so I was willing to take more risk. Bought the K-5 for 424 bucks, plus 50-200 WR to go with it. A friend flying back to India for holidays brought it for me a week later. After having discovered that it was almost brand-new with shutter count only 12 and everything working smoothly, I was overjoyed. The risk had paid off. I recently got a 50mm Pentax-M f1.4 for cheap, and I'm going to explore other manual lenses as I save up for Limiteds. Enjoying every moment of shooting with K-5.

I hope that wasn't very long, couldn't help not sharing it with fellow Pentaxians. I have been regularly visiting this forum for a month now and have learned many things from you guys, reading all these amazing posts and reviews. Many thanks. And, happy holidays!

~ Buzz

12-28-2013, 08:28 AM - 1 Like   #2
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Welcome, Buzz! Thanks for sharing that story! We hope to see the images from your camera soon!
12-28-2013, 08:31 AM - 1 Like   #3
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Welcome Buzz. You just bought yourself one of the best camera in the world. Congratulations. The K-5 is as good as the K-5 II & IIs. In fact the internet favors the K-5 over the newer K-3 in some respects.
A better lens would have been the Tamron 17-50 f2.8 or the 28-75 f2.8 (Full Frame) + the Pentax DA 55-300.
I have personally kept away from the legacy manual lenses - K, M or A as I do not see much advantage compared to the modern computer designed AF lenses with superior coatings, except perhaps for the price.
Pentax has opened shop in India, but their prices are astronomic.
I bought a K-5 with the 18-135 WR from Henrys of Toronto last year for $ 1108. My favourite lenses are the Sigma 10-20, the Tamron 28-75 f2.8 + the 18-135.
Glad you got a brand new K-5. Do let me know its Serial #. Hope it is the Ricoh model and not the Hoya one. Hope you bought some spare batteries too.
Here is a chap shipping to India. No Customs Duty.
Regards.
12-28-2013, 10:50 PM   #4
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Thanks, OchidJulie and Nanhi! The serial number is 4383456, I believe it's a Ricoh model as the sticker underneath says Pentax Ricoh. About the lenses, I'm just starting with my career and photography is still just a hobby. So my budget was much constrained. Since I chose Pentax over other brands, I wanted to make sure I could use the full benefits of its excellent WR. No point in getting a WR body with a non WR lens. I wish I could have bought a 55-300 WR, but I don't regret my decision. 50-200 is good enough for a beginner like me. Next, I am saving up for Pentax-DA 70mm F2.4 and a short wide zoom. Do you think it's the right way to go? I haven't bought any spare batteries. It just skipped my mind, but I think JJMehta in Mumbai has started selling Pentax stuff. So next time I am there, will buy some additional accessories.

Btw, what did you mean by that last sentence? Is there a way to avoid customs duty in India? (I'd prefer to pay them, were they not so astronomically high. And they don't count the purchase value either. They decide the value of an item as they seem fit. E.g. If I had had my K-5 shipped directly, they wouldn't have charged me on its purchase value of $424, but it's MRP here in India, which, I think, is around $1100. Now that's insane!) The only good alternative is to have a friend coming home to carry it for you. And that's what I did.

12-29-2013, 08:15 AM   #5
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You're welcome. At present, my budget doesn't allow new lenses (alas) so I am working with kit lenses -- which, it turns out, are decent, better than the equivalent kit lenses packed up with Those Other Brands -- and a modest collection of older (M42 screw-mount) Pentax Takumar lenses from my film cameras. So I am not the one to make lens suggestions, although you'll find many, many members here who can discuss all of that with great expertise.

I would, however, recommend that you invest in an extra battery or two. My K-r will also take AA batteries (I have the optional adapter), and I keep a set of AA lithiums for "emergency" use. Many members here highly recommend Sanyo Eneloop rechargeable AA batteries. I personally have no experience with them but will probably get a set and charger, eventually. At present, I do have two batteries and the AA adapter, but one can never have enough gadgets, neh?

Enjoy the camera, and please jump right in to the many, many discussions here in the forum!
12-29-2013, 01:35 PM   #6
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Welcome and what a great intro, enjoy both your photography and this forum in equal amounts.
12-30-2013, 01:08 AM   #7
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Incredible India

Hi Buzz,

And welcome to the forum!

Please,please don't look down on the old Pentax and Takumar lenses. Go check out photos taken on this forum with these lenses. You can pick them up for a song!

Actually I would imagine there must be literally thousands in India hanging around in people's cupboards from the film era?
12-30-2013, 02:12 AM   #8
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Welcome aboard

12-30-2013, 02:17 AM   #9
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Welcome Asama!! Buying any electronic item these days is a rip off in India
12-30-2013, 03:06 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Asama Quote
Hi Buzz,

And welcome to the forum!

Please,please don't look down on the old Pentax and Takumar lenses. Go check out photos taken on this forum with these lenses. You can pick them up for a song!

Actually I would imagine there must be literally thousands in India hanging around in people's cupboards from the film era?

..absolutely, if you know where to look. A50/1.4s, 1.7s and a whole bunch of M lenses can be found for cheap...like an A50/1.2 for the equivalent of 85 USD
12-30-2013, 04:31 AM   #11
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Hey Behairhvp!

How about Takumar lenses???
I am looking for the fastest 300 or 400 Prime, or a Pentax 100mm Macro f4.
12-30-2013, 03:11 PM   #12
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Hi Danny09,

When were you there? What a stunning country hey?
Well I never checked prices in India, as I was told to wait for Hong Kong,well anyone reading this, let me warn you in advance......what a stinking rip off!
Unless you are willing to buy the standard Nikon/Canon beginner packages with kit lenses,they are not interested.
The moment I spoke about Primes or anything outside the box,they were not interested.

I have now realized....find a local camera shop in your own country, pay the extra few Grand, and build a relationship.
In the end they will bend over backwards for you. And is something breaks, they will fix it!
Try getting Hongkong shops to honour their guarantees!.......Nightmare on Elm street got nothing on this baby!

Last edited by Asama; 12-30-2013 at 03:16 PM.
12-30-2013, 10:24 PM   #13
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Thanks, everyone. Right, I am interested in old film era lenses and manual photography. I've gone through the reviews and some of those lenses produce absolutely stunning pictures. Also, in India, you can get old lenses cheaper than other places, but they are hard to find. Very few people sell their old stuff on ebay.

Bhairavp, where did you find that A50/1.2? I might visit Mumbai in the next month or so, do let me know where to find Pentax stuff there.
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