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08-12-2016, 07:56 PM   #1
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New to Pentax

My son recently bought a used Pentax K-5lls, and after seeing what he can do with it, now I want one, or a K-3, or a K-3ll. I was really into photography in my younger days (pre-children), but when they came along, with the expense and the time commitment needed, know the rest. Both my sons are out of the house now, so here we go. I'm hoping to get equipped soon and start up what I once really enjoyed. I just need to relearn what I have forgotten about photography. Wish me luck!

08-12-2016, 08:06 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by dsp52 Quote
New to Pentax

Hi dsp52. Welcome to the Pentax forums and Pentax equipment. You have chosen wisely !!! The K-3II can do a few things differently to the K-3. It has pixel shift, built in GPS and is compatible with the new KAF4 lenses that Ricoh/Pentax are developing. I hope to see some of your photographs from whichever you choose. Any help you may need is only a question away. Good to have you here.

PS. Get your son to join up to the forums as well. The more the merrier !!
08-12-2016, 10:47 PM   #3
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Welcome! Photography and this forum are much easier to do when the kids are grown. And if it becomes a passion then it's great to be able to share with your son.
08-12-2016, 11:34 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum! If you plan to add a K-3/K-3II to the stable and keep your K-5 IIS, I'd suggest K-3 II as you already have the integrated pop-up flash on your current camera and the built-in GPS and Astrotracer function coming with the mark II K-3. You might want to use them if at hand. But that's just an idea that turned out well in my case

08-13-2016, 12:20 AM   #5
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Welcome to the forum, just remember to lock up your lenses from other borrowing family members.
08-13-2016, 12:29 AM   #6
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Welcome to the forums - glad you could join us Either the K-3 or K-3II would be a fine choice. As Peter has already explained, the K-3II has some additional features that might be of interest to you, but both are excellent, professional quality cameras.

I'm sure a lot of what you knew will come flooding back once you get started again, but we're here if you need to ask anything
08-13-2016, 03:12 AM   #7
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Welcome to the Forums. Digital is different to film in many ways and I am sure you will have fun learning the new approach.
08-13-2016, 03:27 AM   #8
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Either of the k-3 bodies are nice bits of kit. Depending on how soon you are looking to make the purchase, it might also be worth watching the price of the k-70 to see if that drops much. Image quality wise, it'll match the k-3's, although the shutter sound will be a bit noisier.

The think you might want to consider is what lenses you want to go for? Due to my preference to prime lenses over zooms, if I could only own one lens for the k-3, it would be the DA35 f2.8 macro limited (even a second hand SMC version). It's one of those lenses that really shows what the K-3 can do (the same could be said of any of the FA/DA limiteds to be fair, but when you factor in versatility and price, I'd argue the 35 f2.8 wins!). When it comes to zooms, you can't go too far wrong with the 16-85, 20-40, or 55-300 (the 18-55 and 50-200 are cheaper, but suffer a bit with image quality. I'd actually say choosing a k-s2 and the more expensive lenses would be a better choice!). There are the two cheap plastic fantastic primes as well, which 'for the price' are good, but don't elicit as many smiles as the limiteds when you review your images.

08-14-2016, 12:40 PM   #9
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Thanks for all the welcomes, and for the advice on camera model and lenses! I appreciate the input. So...I just purchased a used K-3 based on its price and condition (we'll see if it matches the seller's description when it arrives later this week), so I'm excited to start using it when it arrives. It's coming with the kit lens (18-55mm), so I'm into researching what better glass I should considering getting. Obviously, there are many opinions out there depending on the person's preferences and type of photography they're doing. Most of the internet articles on "the main three lenses that you need" that most of us have read at one time or another tend to recommend; 1) a zoom in the 70-200mm neighborhood (I'm drawn to this one as it is close the the old Vivitar Series 1, 70-210mm, that I used to use many years ago); 2) a wide angle in the 10-20mm range; and a 50mm prime lens that is at least f1.8 or faster. Some reviews will include or replace the wide angle with a 17-50mm f2.8 zoom. So, what kind of photography do I like to do? I like to do landscapes, macro, architecture, and street...mostly all outdoors. I'm not so much into indoor photography or portraits. So, what do you think? I'm open to suggestions on what my first couple of lenses could/should be. Price is somewhat of a factor as I don't have an unlimited budget (hence the used K-3), but I am fairly picky about photo quality. I'm looking forward to your responses.
08-14-2016, 12:56 PM   #10
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Congratulations on the K-3 - fingers crossed for you that it's a good example; they're tough cameras, so don't be put off by the odd bump or scrape, so long as it works well

Based on the kind of photography you prefer, I'd be inclined to use the kit lens to begin with. Some here really like it - I think it's just OK, but it performs quite well if you stop it down to f/8, which shouldn't be an issue for you outdoors. Then, after shooting for a while, I'd look back at all your shots to see what focal lengths you're using most, and also think about situations where the focal lengths available to you weren't wide or long enough. That'll help you in deciding what lenses to consider - be they wide-to-normal zooms, or perhaps a couple of primes instead.

For the telephoto side of things, I'd recommend the HD DA55-300 or, if you want to save a little, one of its non-WR cousins. There is little to compare with it in terms of image quality at the price.
08-14-2016, 01:14 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by dsp52 Quote
Thanks for all the welcomes, and for the advice on camera model and lenses! I appreciate the input. So...I just purchased a used K-3...
I can only say what I got for my hobby uses.
I'm not so much into ultra-wide angle so my DA 16-45 is the widest I can go, your 18-55 is in the same neighborhood. I got the DA 35/2.4 plastic fantastic for a standard fast lens, close to 50-55mm equivalent on APS-C.
I got the Tamron 70-200/2.8 Macro, a bit soft wide open but at f/4 it becomes a poremaster. Excellent portrait lens on a budget.
I also use a Sigma 50-500 for wildlife/birds that doubles as a great pseudo macro lens at 200mm. Not very budget friendly unless you look at the price of the D-FA 150-450.
08-14-2016, 11:05 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by dsp52 Quote
I was really into photography in my younger days (pre-children), but when they came along, with the expense and the time commitment needed, know the rest. Both my sons are out of the house now, so here we go.
Welcome dsp52! Newbie here too. I was very much into photography a number of years ago, and had portfolios published in a number of magazines etc, but it was my career that got in the way. Now I have a daughter who's only 9 months old, so I'm hoping I'll still be able to find some time somewhere to get photography back in my life!

FWIW I was a Canon man before, and Pentax is all new and exciting to me. I'm going for the K-1 so the lenses I've looked into are all full-frame, obviously not incompatible with the K-1 but you've arguably got a better choice with the DA range.
08-15-2016, 05:45 AM   #13
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Welcome to the club!
Take your time deciding on lenses, see what others are doing. Remember you'll have a LOT of cropping power with the K3's sensor so that's effective magnification.
08-15-2016, 02:22 PM - 1 Like   #14
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Hey dad! You should just go ahead and send me the K-3, I'll check it out for you. Make sure it functions properly
08-15-2016, 06:50 PM   #15

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You might know this, but to anyone else who doesn't that is reading this and is new to digital SLRs, the K-5 and K-3 variants have an APS-C sized sensor, smaller than the older film 35mm SLR bodies you probably are used to using.

This means to get an equivalent field of view, you will need to calculate the crop factor for your focal lengths

So, for instance, 50mm on Full Frame (35mm) is equivalent to 75mm on APS-C (50 x 1.5 = 75).

I don't know your budget.. skys the limit with a lot of this.. but I'd look at these if starting out (with a bit of money available):

DA 16-85mm WR for landscape or a Sigma 17-50 f/2.8 for landscape and street (the WR is weather resistant, the Sigma is not so dont take it out in humid/rainy enviros)
DA 105mm WR Macro
DA* 50-135mm (essentially the APS-C equiv of the 70-200mm. kind of big though so not really a street lens)
DA 35mm f/2.4 (a plastic, yet sharp lens that equivs to roughly that of a 50mm on FF -- cheap starter street lens)
DA 50mm f/1.8 might also work

HD 55-300mm WR (cheap, but fairly sharp telephoto. noisy since it uses the screw drive and it isn't a sports lens but it is really nice for the price and size)

I think the best idea is the old idea of taking your K-3 and 18-55mm kit lens out and shoot at various focal lengths. See if you favor a specific focal length in your zoom's range or if you feel like you need more reach. Go from there. And please make use of the lens reviews on the site:

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