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05-25-2011, 05:05 PM   #1
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Considering K-r but also may go way out and get K-5

Hello All,

I use to be big into black and white photography in highschool and college (80s & 90s). I still have my Program Plus and use it routinely but my everyday camera has been a point and shoot digital but now I am considering a DSLR. Having owned a pentax without a single problem I started looking at pentax over the Nikon and Canon models. I like that the Pentax Cameras are somewhat weather resistant since I plan to take the camera on backpacking and climbing trips and such as well as on a upcoming vacation to France. Anyhow I started off looking at the K-r but after reading reviews of it and the K-5 I am also considering the K5. I think the K5 is much more then I need right now, but perhaps one I can grow into. The K-r looks great and its on sale at Costco with 2 lenses right now which is also very apealing. I am sure that whatever I chose I will like very much but unsure if I should bight the bullet and go all out sort to speak... Also my manual SLR skills have lapsed a bit but I will eventualy get into using them more as I spend more time with a SLR again.

The k5 would stretch my budget to the max which is what is holding me back and each time I think I could buy 2ea K-r setups for the same price as a k5. However I like the idea of the K5 and the 18-135 lens combo and I see that people who have issues with this lens use some correction that the K5 offers... Would this lens work OK on a K-r if I bought a body only and a more versital single lens then the two offered at costco..

As for my program plus, I only have a few lenses but it would be interesting to use them as well..

Well I look forward to all the advice,

Marc

05-25-2011, 08:01 PM   #2
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As price suggests, yes the K5 is the "cadillac" model. (did I spell that correctly??)

But of course the K-r is no slouch of a camera either. I think it comes down to your budget really. The K5 certainly holds many of the advantages.

You say you have some lenses already. It would be prudent to perhaps go with the kit lens to begin with, till you become familiar with your new camera, especially if your older lens are MF lens.

This is just a couple of thoughts I had, I am sure other more in the know about the Kr will be able to give your more detailed answers.

All the best with your selection and purchase.
Let us see some photos down the track a bit.
05-25-2011, 09:32 PM   #3
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My approach to this dilemma was to go with the K-X (last year before k-r came out) a fast, prime lens (Sigma 50 mm 1.4), and a bag. It seems that lenses and lighting matter more than camera body in the long run. After running with that setup for a while I picked up a few really cheap old lenses to try out different focal lengths to see which ones suit me, I got the DA 21 mm Ltd because I was found that to be a nice angle, I also got a tripod, the next thing on my photography wish list is a flash to fill in that hole with the lighting, but that will probably wait until the fall or winter when we will be indoors more. As far as lenses go, I want to get a DA 70 ltd and DA 55-300 (I should have gotten the DAL kit version but they were sold out when I ordered) or a DA* 50-135 then I think I will have a fairly good line up and will be experienced enough to really take advantage of a more sophisticated model like a K-5 or its successor.

IMHO the key advantages of the Pentax line up are (in order of least expensive to take advantage of to most expensive to take advantage of) the in body shake reduction for legacy lenses, the compact size of limited lenses, and the weather proofing of the DA* lenses and top of the line cameras. So I would evaluate what your end goal is and start building a towards that. I liked the compact primes since when I go out to take pictures I like to pick one focal length and stick to it for the day so this doesn't require a pack of gear.

Last edited by mikemike; 05-25-2011 at 09:47 PM.
05-25-2011, 09:42 PM   #4
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Personally I'd get the K-5 if I could afford it. You can add lenses later as you save up for them. The ergonomics are just incredible and worth the extra expense in my opinion. The K-7 is a nice compromise if you would rather save money as it shares the same ergonomics of the K-5 only with an older sensor.

05-25-2011, 10:01 PM   #5
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If you can swing the extra money go for the K5. If you already have experience with SLRs I don't think you have any problems getting use to the K5. The WR would be a big plus for backpacking.

I have a KR and if I had to do it over I would have save and bought the K5 or even bought the lower priced KX. It had severe front focus and I had to send it to be adjusted which took over a month. It is about 98% fixed but will still front focus indoors under tungsten lighting if the white balance is set to Auto. It has no problems outdoors. For the price, the KR is a great camera. If you do get it make sure to buy it from some place you can easily return it.

Have you considered the KX. You can get a great deal on them now, and use the money for better lens.
05-26-2011, 04:32 AM   #6
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Marc, I just got the K-r after doing lots of homework. I opted for it over the k-5 simply because of my skill level (entry level). The K-r seemed like a nice middle point between "bloody beginner" (K-x) and "bloody professional beginner" (K-5). ;-) So far, I love it. It's light enough not to bother me carrying it, but it's heavy enough that you know you're carrying something. The pictures are good, and the options are enough for me. Maybe later I'll opt out and pick up the K-5, but I'm very happy and satisfied with the K-r.

Having said all that, I would say that you should opt for where your skills are.

Just my 2 cents.
05-26-2011, 11:25 AM   #7
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Hello All,

Thanks for all the great replies; they help a lot. I see that some people mentioned the K7 and went to keh.com sinc eit was mentioned in a reply and found that they have quite a few K7's available. Also K20's available as well. I really would like a camera with some degree of weather proofing which is what brought me to Pentax in the first place. So am I safe to assume that the K-r does not have the internal seals as on the K20, K7 and K5?

I looked at some of the reviews for the K7 and it was well liekd, but many people complained about shooting in High ISO as well as the akward movie resolution. I will probbaly use th emovie function here and there so thats no big deal, but curious about the high ISO issues. Unsure if it will be an issue for me as I will probably never use this camera to its fullest potential but then again I am sure ot be caught in low light at times. Is it really a bad mark on the K7? Also the K20 bodies and outfits are affordable as well and that gets me the weatherproofing but its a much older model..

On Keh, a K7 body sells in the range of $600 to $700, a K7 outfit with an 18-55 lens is $849. Is this a fair price for a K7? Its just $150 over the price of the K-r outfit

The K20 Body sells for $600 and an outfit is $616.00 with an 18-55 lens. This is less then the K-r and I am sure its a more capable camera, but curious if choosing an older K20 woudl be better in the long run than a new K-r setup.

Is it possible to Bargain with KEH or are the prices fixed... Anyone here have experience dealing with them. unsure about buying used sight unseen and curious how honest there grading is on condition...

Another option is I work in the 3D film industry and my company is a suplier to B&H and I should see if I can get some sort of discount.

so many options...
05-26-2011, 01:08 PM   #8
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The weather-sealed Pentax DSLRs are the K10D, K200D, K20D, K-7 and K-5. Only a few lenses are weather-resistant: the DA 18-55 WR, the DA 50-200 WR, the DA 18-135 WR, the DA 100/2.8 Macro WR and the five DA * lenses. In most cases, the kit lens sold with the K-7 and K-5 is the DA 18-55 WR, but some retailers sneak in the ordinary version to advertise a cheaper price.

The K-r and other entry-level models have a lot of preprogrammed settings for different situations, like snow or kids or flowers. The upper level cameras have only one camera-does-it-all mode; the rest of the time you have full control. The preprogrammed settings can be a nice crutch but they don't teach you anything. If you want to learn to control aperture, shutter speed and ISO yourself, both levels of camera are about the same.

I got my K-7 last year when the K-5 was not out yet, so I never had to choose between high price and high ISO, or not. I was coming from a camera that was not great above ISO 400, so the K-7 is still a big improvement for me. High ISO is always great to have as a backup, but so is a DA 55-300.

I can't make a video that I can stand to watch once myself. Until they make a camera with a talent upgrade feature, video is not important to me.

05-27-2011, 12:19 PM   #9
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Hello All,

Thanks for the great replies and all the help. This may end up a repost as my computer logged me off before I sent a message and unsure if it will be posted here. If so dissregard.

Anyhow, I try and ask the question again. In my research over the week I have managed ot find a near new used K7 body for $500. The person is upgrading to a K7 so is selling the body only. It has very few shots on it and has never been outsid; so im told... I am a bit leary buying used since i am usure f the waranty is transferable at all. Also he never turned in the waranty card and am curious if I would be able to and be able to have a waranted camera. However he no longer has the receipt. Anyone have any background on if I could waranty this with the card he has and I say I cnat find my receipt.

Also since I plan to use this on hikes and on vacation I am onsidering pourchasing the DA 18-135WR lens for this. I read reviews on this lens that say its great on a K5 with some lens correction that teh K5 offers. Currious if the K7 has this correction menu. Also if not, will an ameteaur like me even notice the shortcoming of this lens?

So with all this said, it seems liek a K7 and this lens woudl be a nice compromise at roughly $800 then say a K5 with a simpler lens at $1600. Also this seems like a much nicer setup than a K-r at $700. Is this a fair assumption?

My only wory is buying used somewhat sight unseen. He is in AZ and I am in CA. Any questions I shoudl ask other than shutter clicks to get an idea as to condition. But then again as I said he bought it nad then realized he wanted a K5 so its pretty muc dorn close to new.

Take care,

Marc
05-27-2011, 04:31 PM   #10
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That is cheap for a K7 at $500.
K20D's usually go for that price.
The lens correction started with the K20D then the K7 and K5 for multiple lenses.
Other models like the K10D (with a hack) and Kx (?) and Kr offer only this correction for 1 lens.
You can probably get a warranty like the ones offered on eBay like Squaretrade warranty. I'm not really sure about this so you can check it with Squaretrade themselves. They usually offer a no questions asked warranty. If the thing get broken, they give you the money back that you payed for the item..at least that is what they claim.
If you get the K7 in the condition that he says it is in, then that would be a good deal since you want weathersealing..remember though that it is weather-sealed/water resistant and not water-proof..so don't go dunking it in..
06-13-2011, 01:52 PM   #11
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It seems that noone is saying go for the K-R, I am also torn between the K-5 and K-r, I have ruled out the K-X because the K-r is in my budget range. Should I reconsider?
06-13-2011, 02:05 PM   #12
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I could only justify the money for a K-r even though I have spent that much on lenses and stuff after I bought it. It was my choice because of cost.

But it does not go out with me on bad weather days or canoe trips. The point and shoot (FZ20 or FZ28) is expendable so I take it instead.

If you plan on "all weather outdoor shooting" you will pretty much have to spring for the WR gear. Or be afraid (like me) to take it with you.
06-13-2011, 02:34 PM   #13
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Hi Marc.
Another pitch for the K-5 being all that you'd need for just about any conditions.
The K-r is a very capable little camera, just lacking the advanced features that make the K-5 versatile in more situations as well as the reliable weather sealing.
Value for money has to be decided upon by the buyer - both are great cameras.
06-13-2011, 02:49 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by mitchatwrk Quote
It seems that noone is saying go for the K-R, I am also torn between the K-5 and K-r, I have ruled out the K-X because the K-r is in my budget range. Should I reconsider?
A lot depends on the lenses you have. I took a quick look at Adorama prices. The K-r is still about $600-700 less than the K-5. That's two good new lenses (or ten old ones ). Those lenses can potentially make a lot more difference in your photos than the feature difference between K-5 and K-r. At some point, the K-5 features will be a lot cheaper or made obsolete by an all-new model. The lenses will still be usable.

In this thread, the original poster started out with a preference for weather seals, which the K-r doesn't have. Plus we don't have to pay off his credit card, so spending his money is easy.
06-14-2011, 09:32 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
A lot depends on the lenses you have. I took a quick look at Adorama prices. The K-r is still about $600-700 less than the K-5. That's two good new lenses (or ten old ones ). Those lenses can potentially make a lot more difference in your photos than the feature difference between K-5 and K-r. At some point, the K-5 features will be a lot cheaper or made obsolete by an all-new model. The lenses will still be usable.

In this thread, the original poster started out with a preference for weather seals, which the K-r doesn't have. Plus we don't have to pay off his credit card, so spending his money is easy.
Hello Mitch,

I was also considering the Kr since Costco had them on special with 2 lenses. I just assumed the Kr had weather seals since when I was looking for cameras years back what I liked about the K10 was that it was sealed. After research on here and with others help I found that to get the seals I needed to buy a K5 if I wanted new or consider on older model like a K7 or K20. With the expense of an upcoming trip to France, I chose to look for a good used K7 and then put money into a nice lens. I figured I might be able to get a used K7 setup for darn close the the price of the Kr. I found a near new K7 body for $500 that does not have a scratch on it and I will be looking at a used Tamron 18-250 lens today that is for sale at $350. So for $850 I ended up with a K7 setup. I ended up with a sealed camera, but not a WR lens, but figure I can always buy a second hand 18-55 WR and have it on hand for days when the weather is iffy. I also have a A50 manual focus prime from a previous camera that I plan to use as well. Now with all that said, I started off with a hopefull budget of 1K and I am at $850 but after more research I also now want a wide angle zoom for panaramas and that will be an aditional $450 or so dollars which will put me at $1300, but all total I think I got a pretty good setup for even less than what a K5 would have cost with the kit lens. This is much more camera then I need at the moment, but one in which I will use for a long time that I can grow into as I learn more. This forum is very helpful and they will steer you in the right direction if you aske enough questions.

good luck...
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