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06-03-2013, 01:47 PM   #1
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Looking for Buying/upgrade advice....

What I own now:
Pentax K-5, Tamron 28-75 F2.8, Tamron 70-200 F2.8, Kit lens... and a couple of old k-mount manuals.




Possible scenarios:
  • Sell the K-5 and grab a deal on a K-5 IIs (minor investment - minor upgrade, but the idea of no aa filter is appealing)
  • Wait for a hypothetical K-3 FF... (don't think my main lenses are up for FF however - $$$$)
  • Jump ship to Nikon and start from scratch with everything... D7100 ($$$) or even D600 ($$$$) and yes, before the naysayers jump in about the expense and the need for FX lenses on the D600, I am aware the jump in funds it would take to make this happen. BUT, this is also a move to Full Frame.
The K-5IIs would be a stop-gap move to fulfill my needs as a tech-a-holic until the K-3 materializes... if it ever does.

Let me add that I consider myself on the upper end of the amateur spectrum and am in love with Pentax. I have been impressed with their DSLRs since my K20D ... if the K-3 was out today, im not sure I would even be questioning anything - PLUS - asking a Pentax forum on the merits of a Nikon purchase is not exactly "PC", but I trust I will get a fair take on the question as that has been my experience here in the past.

So - Down to the real question of the day... is the K-5 IIs worth the time and expense to upgrade? -or- is my money better spent with the move to Nikon?

I come up with a different answer each day of the week. I would greatly appreciate your feedback and any insights.


Last edited by Tricktech; 06-03-2013 at 01:59 PM.
06-03-2013, 01:55 PM   #2
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I've decided to wait for the next body. If it's not affordable, I'll consider the K5IIs - but my next camera will have no AA filter. I like the idea for insect and other macros. Until then, my K-5 is working just fine.
06-03-2013, 01:56 PM   #3
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Yes. I had a K-5, now I have a K-5IIs and the upgrade has been more than worth it. Faster, sharper, fewer lens adjustments, lower light responsivity, its all there and more of an improvement than I through it would be when reading online materials.

See: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-k-5/224284-k-5iis-omg.html
06-03-2013, 01:57 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tricktech Quote
What I own now:
Pentax K-5, Tamron 28-75 F2.8, Tamron 70-200 F2.8, Kit lens... and a couple of old k-mount manuals.



Possible scenarios:
  • Sell the K-5 and grab a deal on a K-5 IIs (minor investment - minor upgrade, but the idea of no aa filter is appealing)
  • Wait for a hypothetical K-3 FF... (don't think my main lenses are up for FF however - $$$$)
  • Jump ship to Nikon and start from scratch with everything... D7100 ($$$) or even D600 ($$$$) and yes, before the naysayers jump in about the expense and the need for FX lenses on the D600, I am aware the jump in funds it would take to make this happen. BUT, this is also a move to Full Frame.
The K-5IIs would be a stop-gap move to fulfill my needs as a tech-a-holic until the K-3 materializes... if it ever does.

Let me add that I consider myself on the upper end of the amateur spectrum and am in love with Pentax and have been impressed with their DSLRs since my K20D ... if the K-3 was out today, im not sure I would even be questioning anything - PLUS - asking a Pentax forum on the merits of a Nikon purchase is not exactly "PC", but I trust I will get a fair take on the question as that has been my experience here in the past.

So - Down to the real question of the day... is the K-5 IIs worth the time and expense to upgrade? -or- is my money better spent with the move to Nikon?

I come up with a different answer each day of the week. I would greatly appreciate your feedback and any incites.
Sounds like you've got a pretty good setup with some nice lenses. IMO I'd say that you're missing some modern primes in your lineup, so maybe that would be one area to look at?

The K-5 IIs isn't much of an upgrade as it's got the same internals and features, with the only difference being that the sensor is filterless and the AF has been improved in low light. The IIs does produce sharper files out of the box, but comparable results can be obtained after applying an unsharp mask to the original K-5's photos. The sharpness is in fact a bit better overall with good lenses, but I'd still recommend that wait it out if you want to stick with Pentax, as a new APS-C flagship is bound to be announced before the end of the year.

The D600 or D800 are great alternatives if you've got $5k+ lying around for glass. The image quality of both cameras is really impressive, though IMO the Nikon user interface isn't as user-friendly as the Pentax one in many areas.


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06-03-2013, 02:16 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Yes. I had a K-5, now I have a K-5IIs and the upgrade has been more than worth it. Faster, sharper, fewer lens adjustments, lower light responsivity, its all there and more of an improvement than I through it would be when reading online materials.

See: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-k-5/224284-k-5iis-omg.html
Yeah, I caught that one - I like to temper my expectations a bit as not to be too disappointed, but I would be hopeful of a similar experience - thanks for your feedback!!
06-03-2013, 02:26 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tricktech Quote
So - Down to the real question of the day... is the K-5 IIs worth the time and expense to upgrade? -or- is my money better spent with the move to Nikon?
Depends on what you are trying to accomplish in photography. What are the advantages to you of a FF system? I currently run a dual system (pentax and nikon) and can provide some good non bias insight on the D7100 as well as an updated pentax system.
06-03-2013, 02:27 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Sounds like you've got a pretty good setup with some nice lenses. IMO I'd say that you're missing some modern primes in your lineup, so maybe that would be one area to look at?

The K-5 IIs isn't much of an upgrade as it's got the same internals and features, with the only difference being that the sensor is filterless and the AF has been improved in low light. The IIs does produce sharper files out of the box, but comparable results can be obtained after applying an unsharp mask to the original K-5's photos. The sharpness is in fact a bit better overall with good lenses, but I'd still recommend that wait it out if you want to stick with Pentax, as a new APS-C flagship is bound to be announced before the end of the year.

The D600 or D800 are great alternatives if you've got $5k+ lying around for glass. The image quality of both cameras is really impressive, though IMO the Nikon user interface isn't as user-friendly as the Pentax one in many areas.
I actually own an FA 50mm 1.4 that is pretty sharp... even wide open - and I have been trolling for a 1.7 for a decent price... but they are getting harder to find.

Been actively seeking an FA 100 f2.8 WR Macro... but with the latest price increases... and the chance I might consider Nikon... I have held off.

If you have an FA77 Limited laying around you care to donate... Ill put it to good use as well.

Like Doc, I'm not a fan of sitting at Lightroom/Photoshop tweeking everything I shoot - the closer to "tack-sharp" and color accurate the image starts out, the happier I am. I too am of the opinion that it should come out of the camera "right".

So, from what you said - you believe that an investment in quality glass outweighs the upgrade to a k-5 IIs?

Last edited by Tricktech; 06-03-2013 at 07:58 PM.
06-03-2013, 02:57 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by joe.penn Quote
Depends on what you are trying to accomplish in photography. What are the advantages to you of a FF system? I currently run a dual system (pentax and nikon) and can provide some good non bias insight on the D7100 as well as an updated pentax system.
Honestly, I considered the D7000 pretty heavily when moving on from my K-7, but the K-5 I believe to be a better camera. The D7100 however, raises the bar. I don't believe that megapixels is the answer to great image quality, but it doesn't hurt either - no aa filter and 24.1mp - better low light performance (than the D7000) and better focusing system makes it a pretty enticing package... but if I'm going to change out all my glass, I might as well go FF? (and thus begins my inner struggle)

I would have to start with 1 or maybe 2 lenses if I made the move to a D600 - I'm really drawn to the overall IQ of the Nikon FF cameras. There are a ton of reasons why the images from a FF are typically superior to APS-C, but low-light sensitivity and noise are the ones that most interest me.


Last edited by Tricktech; 06-03-2013 at 03:42 PM.
06-03-2013, 07:58 PM   #9
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Well, you guys have given me a little food for thought... I think Ill hold off a bit longer and see what Pentax has to offer (hopefully by the end of the year)

In the mean time I pulled the trigger on a Pentax DFA 100 f2.8 Macro WR, and a Used F-50 1.7...
and am looking for a deal on a Limited Prime.

Knowing what I have to work with now... (Tamron 28-75 F2.8, Tamron 70-200 F2.8 and the two additions above)

Which limited would compliment my lenses best? FA77?

...or something completely different?
06-03-2013, 10:22 PM   #10
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When I look at the OP's lineup, it seems to be missing a wide angle. The kit lens is OK but I am suprised there is nothing really wide.

I would think an ultra wide zoom, either the 12-24 or a sigma 10-20 would be more value than an upgrade of the body, I have had a 28-75/2.8 and a 70-200/2.8 for a long time, and would go slightly mad if I didn't have my 10-20 to cover the bottom end of the focal length. Regardless of whether Pentax ever comes out with a full frame or not, a 10-20 is worth it even if it is only an APS-C lens.
06-04-2013, 07:14 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
When I look at the OP's lineup, it seems to be missing a wide angle. The kit lens is OK but I am suprised there is nothing really wide.

I would think an ultra wide zoom, either the 12-24 or a sigma 10-20 would be more value than an upgrade of the body, I have had a 28-75/2.8 and a 70-200/2.8 for a long time, and would go slightly mad if I didn't have my 10-20 to cover the bottom end of the focal length. Regardless of whether Pentax ever comes out with a full frame or not, a 10-20 is worth it even if it is only an APS-C lens.
I have had that thought but I can only think of one situation in the last year where I have wanted something wider than what I have... you are correct in that the kit lens isn't great, but it has proven sufficient for my needs so far. That could change of course, but I have never been much of a fan of the distortion prevalent in a really wide lens or fish eye. If there is another approach to the shot, Ill usually take it.

Definitely food for thought.
06-04-2013, 11:20 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tricktech Quote
I have had that thought but I can only think of one situation in the last year where I have wanted something wider than what I have... you are correct in that the kit lens isn't great, but it has proven sufficient for my needs so far. That could change of course, but I have never been much of a fan of the distortion prevalent in a really wide lens or fish eye. If there is another approach to the shot, Ill usually take it.

Definitely food for thought.
Rectilinear lenses can have some distortion but they also can do things that no other focal lengths can. On trips in museums and such a <18mm lens like the Tamron 10-24mm has proven invaluable. LR can correct for the distortions rather easily.
06-04-2013, 03:09 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tricktech Quote
I have had that thought but I can only think of one situation in the last year where I have wanted something wider than what I have... you are correct in that the kit lens isn't great, but it has proven sufficient for my needs so far. That could change of course, but I have never been much of a fan of the distortion prevalent in a really wide lens or fish eye. If there is another approach to the shot, Ill usually take it.

Definitely food for thought.
I find that when travelling in cities, especially in Europe where things are large and streets small and narrow, an ultra wide is valuable. My 10-20 probably takes z60% of my travel shots. If you a not into architecture you might not want one, but if you travel a lot, you end up in architecture eventually. The kit lens is 18 mm which was equal FOV to a 28 mm lens on film. I travelled for years with a 24mm and cursed nothing wider. When I got an *istD, it came with the FA-J 18-35, which went on my film camera. Then I was satisfied with having a sufficiently wide lens. So, I got the 10-20. As for distortion, you need to clarify this point. Perspective distortion is only a function of subject to camera distance. It is just for the same field of view in feet/meters you are closer to the subject with a UW lens. It can be fixed in most photo editors, and barrel/ barrel distortion with some ultra wide zooms are less the primes..samyang 14 is a good example of an ultra wide prime with a lot of barrel distortion
06-04-2013, 06:44 PM   #14
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You make good points and, as you might have guessed, im not much into architecture - coincidentally, the one time I mentioned in the last year I had wanted something wider was on vacation... a beach/ocean shot.

So far as the distortion goes, I have corrected shots in lightroom/photoshop for the lens with some success and im not opposed to the whole "post processing" side of modern digital photography, but inevitably my eye sees something "off" about the images shot with a really wide lens. It probably boils down to the fact that my primary interests lie elsewhere.

Since earlier comments were made about filling my lens lineup with a good wide angle, it has been on my mind and i'm not ruling it out. Maybe a high quality piece of glass would open something up for me I had considered closed. I am still an amateur and have a lot to learn!
06-04-2013, 06:53 PM   #15
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What do you guys think of the Tamron 10-24 vs the Sigma 10-20? I've never owned Sigma Glass.
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