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05-12-2010, 08:04 PM   #1
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New to DSLRs

As Im sure you guys get from time to time, Im new to this DSLR thing. I did read thre fraggers thread and how much the k10d was recommended, but seeing as its bee about a year since then i wasnt sure how much the landscape has changed. Perhaps new inputs has altered the recommendations.

Im looking to step up from the point and shoot camera. I can get some great shots out of it(Olympus 790 sw*) but i want more. Ive planning on getting a job on a cruise liner so i will be traveling quite a bit and am looking to take advantage and get some great photos.

**


Being that is is a cruise liner I would be near water so the weather sealed bodies would probably be a good idea. The primary reason i bought that olympus is because of its durability,completely water proof, resistant to cold and very sturdy. I do want a camera that I can go with for a while as this will be a good chunk of change. Im looking to stay sub 1000 though preferabbly around 750 if i can get away with it. I have NO lenses or really any strong desire for a particular brand.

After doing some research i found a Kx for 675 with 2 lenses
Walmart.com: Pentax K-x Black 12.4MP Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm & 55-300mm Zoom Lenses: Digital Cameras

It seems like a great deal to get two lenses and a body for that price.
I had heard some negatives about the battery consumption and hard to find accessories for it, which had me looking at the d5000. Though the need to get lenses with vr in them scared me a bit.

I really am brand new to this and have little knowledge of SLRs so this is going to involve alot of experimenting, and i do want something that will last a while and age with me, whch is why i am eyeballing the newer cameras.

Ive heard good things about the d90 but thats getting a bit pricey especially compared the the kx with 2 lenses.

The k20d's weather resistance is also nice, and it looks like I can get it and a lens for 850, which is still a little high for me, when compared to the kx. And trhe K7 is 900 w/o a lens.

Basically im leaning towards the KX but am concerned about hitting its ceiling quickly and the lack of weather protection.

ANy advice or suggestions would be great

Ive been looking around and a question frequently asked by responders is what is the camera to be used for. Primarily I like landscapes, though I have an interest in action shots of skiers, surfers, ect. I assume that most SLRs will outperform a point and shoot in terms of speed shots.


Last edited by drew39k; 05-13-2010 at 02:07 AM. Reason: Added information
05-13-2010, 07:54 AM   #2
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Sports will challenge DSLR's because of the advanced AF needed, there's a reason sprts shooters use $5K cameras.

Otherwise it's a great starting point for that price level. Check the used forum here for decent deals as well.
05-13-2010, 08:07 AM   #3
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Another possible option for weather resistance camera is to track down a used K200D. Last time I checked keh.com had some for under $500. One problem, though, with a WR camera is, to take full advantage of it, you need WR lenses to go with it. You can get a WR version of 18-55 kit lens fairly cheap, but all of Pentax's other WR glass tend to be +$700.
05-13-2010, 08:43 AM   #4
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Yikes. That is a price tag that doesnt interest me(the 700+ lens price). I tend to over think things before spending gobs of money. On first instict the KX seems like a good fit, but then i hear about this weather resistance and am like ooooh. Id imagine that the non WR cameras still hold up well, its just a good idea to be more cautionary with them? Which considering how much these things cost Ill be tending to it anyway.

In regards to sports shots. Am I mistaken to assume that a DSLR will out preform a point and shoot?
This is what im getting out of my Olympus
http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b82/drew39k/P21803422.jpg?t=1273764904

http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b82/drew39k/P21803952.jpg?t=1273764973

Not the greatest quality which, I feel forces me to over doctor the photos to get something striking that. An attempt to hide the lower quality.

http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b82/drew39k/z4.jpg?t=1273765009

http://i17.photobucket.com/albums/b82/drew39k/zack1.jpg?t=1273765045

I feel like im 90% to get the KX any one got something to push me the rest o the way?

05-13-2010, 09:37 AM   #5
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First of all I have to say that getting decent sports pictures from a K-x is certainly feasible. Professional sports photogs use $5G cameras because their livelyhood depends on getting THE shot. For us normal human beings it isn't as critical. I've seen great action sports shots from all of the Pentax DSLR's
I agree somewhat with northcoastgreg. It is my opinion however that having a weather proof camera body is more important than having a weather proof lens. I've shot in some pretty heavy rain with the K10D and an non weather proof lens and have had no problem as long as I
A: covered the barrel of the lens with a plastic bag and
B: Removed the wet lens as soon as I got someplace out of the weather.
C: Placed a rubber band around the camera/lens junction to help keep water from getting in there

A camera body has a lot more openings and nooks and crannies that hold water. The lens, being essentially a cylinder, tends to shed water pretty well.

Of course you can start out with the K200D plus the DA 18-55 WR, that should get you going without having to worry about the ABC above.

NaCl(hope that helps)H2O
05-13-2010, 11:33 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by drew39k Quote
Yikes. That is a price tag that doesnt interest me(the 700+ lens price). I tend to over think things before spending gobs of money. On first instict the KX seems like a good fit, but then i hear about this weather resistance and am like ooooh. Id imagine that the non WR cameras still hold up well, its just a good idea to be more cautionary with them? Which considering how much these things cost Ill be tending to it anyway.
It does sound like a really cool feature. It isn't 100% required. My older Pentax DSLR did fine with caution for almost 5 years. If they sold a drop-resistant model, it would be the same deal: you could pay more or just not drop the camera, and most of the time, not dropping it works fine.

QuoteQuote:
In regards to sports shots. Am I mistaken to assume that a DSLR will out preform a point and shoot?
It should, but maybe not automatically. The main issue is, the auto-focus might not be able to track the action as well. Since a DSLR gives you a lot of control, you can often get over that problem. In your example shots, you could have focused on the hill the skier was going to jump before he got there, then turned off focus. Problem easily solved. If you just want to pick up the camera and fire off 12 perfect shots to sell to Sports Illustrated, you need a different camera.
05-13-2010, 01:20 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by northcoastgreg Quote
One problem, though, with a WR camera is, to take full advantage of it, you need WR lenses to go with it. You can get a WR version of 18-55 kit lens fairly cheap, but all of Pentax's other WR glass tend to be +$700.
You're forgetting about the Pentax DA 50-200 WR, available for just over $200.
05-13-2010, 07:52 PM   #8
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A better question perhaps. If I were to go with the KX, how long could I reasonably expect to get out of the camera before looking for an upgrade? Two years?

Also, I assume that the KX is simpler to operate and learn with versus the k20/200.

05-13-2010, 10:04 PM   #9
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It's really impossible to say how long you'd be happy with the Kx, or any camera. Sopme upgrade more often than that, some less often.

As for simplicty of operation, I'd say the Kx has less things to mess with than the others. But no one forces you to actually *use* all those extra features on the other cameras. Basically, all you ever really need to control on any camera is shutter speed, aperture, and ISO, and all DSLR's do that in largely the same way - which means there is really no difference to speak of.
05-14-2010, 03:34 AM   #10
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Drew--water is water, but saltwater is something else.

I don't know much about it myself, so you should inquire more, but being at sea and in the sea air would require you to follow more than average/more stringent cleaning procedures DAILY (or even more often) on your body and lenses.
05-14-2010, 04:24 AM   #11
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Best thing I have found in tropical and at sea is to get large ziploc heavy duty freezer bags and dessicant packets. You can easily get the packets from Amazon etc... At the end of the day put the camera and lens in the bag for overnight. Also store unused lenses in bags with dessicant packs. I spent some time in Japan and this is how I prevented fungas growth on my glass. Marc's answer above is spot on.
05-14-2010, 07:17 AM   #12
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im doing a terrific job of driving myself a bit mad.
I keep running around in circles. The biggest pros to the KX are the price, and the second lens.
But I like the added weather resistance of the k20
The K7 is the next step up from the k20 and really its only 100 or so more for that camera but is about 300 more than the KX that comes with a second lens.

Im not sure if Im overvaluing the second lens of the kx, or the weather resistance of the k20/k7. I think that for experimenting that the kx is better but the k7 is better long term.

Also what other items would be needed upon purchase? I know a high capacity SD card and some sort of case for the camera. Anything else that is required or highly recommended?
05-14-2010, 09:53 AM   #13
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WR isn't that great of a feature for me. I've used it once or twice, but I've only got one single photo that I'd want to keep because most of the time rainy and wet looks ugly and dark. However, the K-x has an awesome sensor that tips the balance in favor of the K-x. Every single shot uses the sensor.

The keeper photo I took was taken in snowfall. And I used a flash, which wasn't even WR. So I probably didn't even need a WR body. So if you don't count that, then I've never shot a keeper photo that required WR. YMMV.

Try this google search of the photo section with mention of "WR":
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&source=hp&q=WR+site%3Ahttp%3A%2F%2Fwww.pe...=&oq=&gs_rfai=

Now look through these keeper photos and tell me which ones actually needed WR. You might find something that you'll end up doing. I didn't.

Last edited by Aegon; 05-14-2010 at 09:58 AM.
05-14-2010, 12:06 PM   #14
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Well, sitting on the shelf in back of me is my old and trusty Spotmatic II that I acquired in the Navy in 1970. Weather sealing is not needed on cruise ships, even for extended time. Just take care of the system. Salt spray is the main culprit here - you are probably not going to be changing lenses in a gale.

The KX should be just fine. The two lens set will give you everything you will probably need. I was out on a ship to do some equipment tests and took my K100D and it survived very nicely....

https://www.pentaxforums.com/gallery/images/18325/1_Trident_Warrior_08_BHR_UNREP_IMGP4002.jpg
05-14-2010, 12:26 PM   #15
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Have you had both cameras in you hands? My hands are sasquatch sized and the K7 is not a fit, with the battery grip it is better and also capable of near 1500 shots depending on screen settings and usage, flash useage, phase of the moon etc... In a wedding, proms etc. I have never had need for more than about 450 images all shot in RAW, so the battery pack is not a necessity for me I simply carry and extra charged battery. Get both cameras in your hands, could be that one or the other is a fit for you.
In response to " rainy and wet looks ugly and dark " He must be awfully depressed there in Portland. Rain and wet particularly in fall foliage enhances the natural colors. Also a grey overcast sky is the most even lighting on the planet. Many of us spend $$$$ to make that happen in studio setting. Looks like somebody might need to review their exposure settings, get a tripod and a Pentax flash and diffuser to get outside after the storm. The colors can be amazing!Weather resistance is a handy feature because it also contributes to dust resistance when used with Pentax weather resistant lenses. Also consider where your cruises will be taking you. Tropical regions, particularly south of the equator might warrant more weight on the weather resistance as afternoon rain showers are a VERY common occurance as is volcanic ash in some areas.I have lots of older screw mount and k and KA mount glass and the zooms in particular require me to regularly clean my sensor every 90 days or so ( or when I get tired of covering dust in pp) I recommend 8 gb /card. I don't even want to start an arguement about card brands here. Get the best you can buy and get two of them. For Ship board you might consider one of the Lowe brand backpacks. I can also recommend Kinesis photo gear bags pouches etc...The Arctic Butterfly brush has been a real asset to have. It removes my most dreaded sensor enemy pollen, usually by the second swipe. Bestof luck, I have never agonized about a decision as much as I did when I changed from film. All those film bodies, but the factor that moved me to Pentax was that I could use all my old glass.
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