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07-16-2014, 12:44 PM   #1
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Hello from NC with a "new" K10D

Just joined after lurking around here for the last few days, reading lots of posts and articles.

About a year ago, my wife expressed interest in moving up to a DSLR from our old Canon A510 point & shoot, and I'd also had similar thoughts. Our daughter gave her an ist-D and a couple of lenses that she wasn't using, but it turned out to not be working. Since we now had Pentax compatible lenses, I bought her a gently used K10D body from Adorama to get her started.

We were a little disappointed that the K10D didn't have any "scene" modes, as we thought they would ease the transition from P&S to DSLR. We've been using it in Green Mode, and taken some great pictures that way, but we've also had some really bad ones. It's more that we've been lucky that the conditions are just right than knowing what we're doing. Anything out of the ordinary, like backlit people, moving kids & pets, low light shots and stuff like that usually don't work out. I've done a some reading online and a little experimenting with Program mode, but still can't seem to get decent pictures most of the time.

Did I make a mistake in getting the wrong camera to make the transition?

Dave

07-16-2014, 12:46 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum, the K10D is a very capable camera, this thread may well be of interest to you.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/6-pentax-dslr-discussion/242738-k10d-club.html
07-16-2014, 01:00 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by DaveNC Quote
Just joined after lurking around here for the last few days, reading lots of posts and articles.

About a year ago, my wife expressed interest in moving up to a DSLR from our old Canon A510 point & shoot, and I'd also had similar thoughts. Our daughter gave her an ist-D and a couple of lenses that she wasn't using, but it turned out to not be working. Since we now had Pentax compatible lenses, I bought her a gently used K10D body from Adorama to get her started.

We were a little disappointed that the K10D didn't have any "scene" modes, as we thought they would ease the transition from P&S to DSLR. We've been using it in Green Mode, and taken some great pictures that way, but we've also had some really bad ones. It's more that we've been lucky that the conditions are just right than knowing what we're doing. Anything out of the ordinary, like backlit people, moving kids & pets, low light shots and stuff like that usually don't work out. I've done a some reading online and a little experimenting with Program mode, but still can't seem to get decent pictures most of the time.

Did I make a mistake in getting the wrong camera to make the transition?

Dave
Welcome to the forum from the NC members. Also be sure and check the lens and camera review sections for other helpful hints as well. Just remember you can also shoot manual and do great things. I've been through the K7,5, and now K-3 and still shoot it like my Spotmatic in 1972. When in doubt, just ask as there are many here to help. We also have a beautiful state to photograph.
07-16-2014, 01:09 PM   #4
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Welcome - the K10D is a wonderful camera, capable of stunning photos. I suggest reading Bryan Peterson's "Understanding Exposure" to help you learn how a DSLR works. Good luck & enjoy

07-16-2014, 01:52 PM   #5
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The K10D was the flagship camera at the time and the controls are geared to advanced users, so no scene modes.
Pentax sells more entry level cameras that incorporate scene modes in each generation, but once you know the basics of exposure you shouldn't need them.

Main thing is to learn the relationship and effect of shutter speed, aperture and ISO. See this article https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/58-pentax-beginners-corner-q/247120-true-...tart-here.html

You can get an instructional book such as this one to help.
http://www.amazon.com/Understanding-Exposure-3rd-Edition-Photographs/dp/0817...raphy+exposure
07-16-2014, 05:07 PM   #6
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Welcome from up the road in Durham! My path to Pentax was similar to yours in that I went from a Canon P&S (Powershot A610) to the K10D. A bit easier for me in that I had already been using manual mode on the Canon. Scene modes are pretty clever, but don't always get it right either. At any rate, it is possible to roughly translate various scene modes into settings on the K10D. You're right to start with P mode instead of Green mode. P mode is like Green mode except that it allows you to override things; the camera then compensates. So if you have a backlit subject, put it in P mode and then either pop up the flash, or dial up the exposure compensation (by pressing the button just below the rear dial and simultaneously turning the front dial). The point is you want more light than the meter thinks you do in a backlit scene.

Check the ISO setting (by pressing the Fn button and then the right arrow) and set it to Auto, with a range from 100 to 800 (or even to 1600 if you find the shutter speeds too low in dim light) to handle dim light. For moving subjects, again in P mode you can decrease the shutter speed using the front dial; the camera will automatically adjust the other settings (aperture and ISO) to match. If you're shooting portraits, in P mode you can decrease the f-stop with the rear dial, to get a shallower depth of field (looks good for portraits).

If you haven't already done so, you might want to reset the camera to its default settings (check the user manual for instructions). And make sure the camera is in matrix metering mode. (You set the metering mode by turning the collar of the exposure mode dial -- the three little rectangles are the metering modes, and matrix metering is the green rectangle.)

Lots to learn, but I think you'll find it's worth it.
07-16-2014, 05:13 PM   #7
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Thanks for the welcome and the suggestions.

I found the K10D Club thread the other day and have read through a big part of it. There are some fantastic photos in it, too, so I know the camera is capable. I'll finish reading it and maybe introduce myself over there.

Two recommendations for the "Understanding Exposure" book already? I guess I need to get a copy and study it.

And, yes, North Carolina is a great state to photograph. We have it all from the mountains to the sea.

Thanks everybody!

Dave

---------- Post added 07-16-14 at 08:28 PM ----------

(baro-nite, I guess we were composing posts at the same time.)

Thanks for the suggestions. I did do a reset when we first got the camera, but may do another one to start with a clean slate again since I've been messing with some things. I also set ISO to Auto and limited the range to 100-800 based on what I've read in the forum about the K10D not doing so great at higher ISO speeds.

The other ideas are exactly the kind of stuff I need. I tried flash with backlit scenes, but wasn't thrilled with the results. I didn't know about dialing up the exposure compensation to handle that. I read how to change the exposure compensation in the manual, but like many other things I read how to do, I don't know when to do it or when it applies or what's a "reasonable" aperture or shutter speed or other setting. That's where the book that others recommended may come in handy. I've read about aperture and depth of field, but haven't figured out reasonable values for different situations.

Is there a "guide" somewhere online that lists common settings for the various scene modes that other camera have?

Thanks again, I'll keep plugging away at it.

Dave
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