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04-17-2014, 12:50 AM   #1
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K-3 Shake Reduction vs K-5iis SR

I am planning to buy either the K-3 or K-5iis later this year, and I might sell off my K-5. So I am trying to gather some research on whether to get the K-3 or K5iis.

One thing that comes up is that cameras with 16 mega pixels can be sharper handheld than a 24 mega pixel camera. I first learned this from some internet postings about the D7000 and D7100, in which Nikon-folks complain how the D7100 is not as sharp handheld compared to the D7000.

Now I have read some comments on Pentax forums where people claim that the K-3 does not suffer this against the K-5's, because the Shake Reduction has been improved.........

So my question is: has the K-3 received a higher speed Shake Reduction to cope with the finer pixel density ? If so, what is the improvement in stops ?

04-17-2014, 01:47 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by zoolander Quote
So my question is: has the K-3 received a higher speed Shake Reduction to cope with the finer pixel density ? If so, what is the improvement in stops ?
It's "up to half a stop more effective", though IMHO it's really the same thing in practice. The key thing is that the sensor is only as good as the lens used the a camera- and the K-3 is certainly a bit more picky with lenses. If you just plan to use consumer zooms, you wouldn't benefit as much from the K-3's added resolution as you would with primes or premium zooms.

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04-17-2014, 04:27 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by zoolander Quote
I am planning to buy either the K-3 or K-5iis later this year, and I might sell off my K-5. So I am trying to gather some research on whether to get the K-3 or K5iis.

One thing that comes up is that cameras with 16 mega pixels can be sharper handheld than a 24 mega pixel camera. I first learned this from some internet postings about the D7000 and D7100, in which Nikon-folks complain how the D7100 is not as sharp handheld compared to the D7000.
I don't think this is correct, an image don't get less sharp because it's made of more pixels.

Each pixel on D7100 might not be as sharp as on D7000, as D7100 got smaller pixels. But the whole image don't get less sharp because it's made of smaller pixels. If images from D7000 is sharper than images from D7100 it's something else than numbers of pixels.
04-17-2014, 05:26 AM   #4
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Could be people aren't resisting the urge to compare their images at 100% on their computer screen. This is harder on the higher megapixel images as it's being magnified more. The higher the megapixel count, the better your technique needs to be to hit that pixel-peeping level of sharpness. It's usually easier to blame the camera then yourself (<-I'm pointing the hypothetical random finger at hypothetical random people complaining, not at anyone real or specific).


Last edited by BrianR; 04-17-2014 at 05:33 AM.
04-17-2014, 04:01 PM   #5
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Gimme a K-3 body with a K-5 sensor, at a price halfway between the two. Call it a K-4. I'll take two, please.
04-17-2014, 04:24 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
It's "up to half a stop more effective", though IMHO it's really the same thing in practice. The key thing is that the sensor is only as good as the lens used the a camera- and the K-3 is certainly a bit more picky with lenses. If you just plan to use consumer zooms, you wouldn't benefit as much from the K-3's added resolution as you would with primes or premium zooms.
Oh okay, so its getting 4.5 stops. I also have a Sony A65 and its 24 megapixels and has better "Steady Shot" than SR - its rated to 3.5-4.5 stops. I switched to the Sony from a Nikon and it was a huge leap from VR - VR at 2-3 stops (VRii is supposed to be 3-4 stops). Handheld, my K-5 (with 18-135mm) is far ahead on sharpness, even with a 50mm 1.8 on the Sony. But on a tripod the Sony is only slightly sharper.

So if the K-3 is equal to the A65 in term of sensor shift, then theoretically a K-5/iis may still be sharper than the K-3.

Regarding lenses, over the next few months I'm going to buy the sharpest lenses I can:
Starting with a fisheye. I'm deciding between the 10-17mm Pentax and Sigma 10mm 2.8 (Any help would be good ?).
Then its on to ultra wide angle, and after all the reviews I've looked at, I'll be getting rid of my Sigma 10-20 f/4, and getting a 12-24mm Pentax (Any suggestions would help ?).
Then its on to wide to medium telephoto, and I'm deciding between the DA* 16-50mm 2.8 vs the Sigma 18-35mm 1.8 (Any suggestions would help ?).
Then finally a telephoto: I haven't yet thoroughly researched it, but I would prefer a fast aperture and am leaning to the Sigma 70-200 OS 2.8 (Any suggestions would help ?).

And then I'll upgrade a body to either the K-5iis or K-3. Thanks for your help !
04-17-2014, 04:27 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by zoolander Quote
Oh okay, so its getting 4.5 stops. I also have a Sony A65 and its 24 megapixels and has better "Steady Shot" than SR - its rated to 3.5-4.5 stops. I switched to the Sony from a Nikon and it was a huge leap from VR - VR at 2-3 stops (VRii is supposed to be 3-4 stops). Handheld, my K-5 (with 18-135mm) is far ahead on sharpness, even with a 50mm 1.8 on the Sony. But on a tripod the Sony is only slightly sharper.

So if the K-3 is equal to the A65 in term of sensor shift, then theoretically a K-5/iis may still be sharper than the K-3.

Regarding lenses, over the next few months I'm going to buy the sharpest lenses I can:
Starting with a fisheye. I'm deciding between the 10-17mm Pentax and Sigma 10mm 2.8 (Any help would be good ?).
Then its on to ultra wide angle, and after all the reviews I've looked at, I'll be getting rid of my Sigma 10-20 f/4, and getting a 12-24mm Pentax (Any suggestions would help ?).
Then its on to wide to medium telephoto, and I'm deciding between the DA* 16-50mm 2.8 vs the Sigma 18-35mm 1.8 (Any suggestions would help ?).
Then finally a telephoto: I haven't yet thoroughly researched it, but I would prefer a fast aperture and am leaning to the Sigma 70-200 OS 2.8 (Any suggestions would help ?).

And then I'll upgrade a body to either the K-5iis or K-3. Thanks for your help !
3.5 stops of compensation is what Pentax officially claims.

But since most photos don't rely on shake reduction for sharpness, the K-3 will be sharper. It's got 50% more pixels after all

I would recommend starting a separate thread for lens suggestions.

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04-17-2014, 04:34 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fogel70 Quote
I don't think this is correct, an image don't get less sharp because it's made of more pixels.

Each pixel on D7100 might not be as sharp as on D7000, as D7100 got smaller pixels. But the whole image don't get less sharp because it's made of smaller pixels. If images from D7000 is sharper than images from D7100 it's something else than numbers of pixels.
The story goes: because the pixels have gotten so much finer on 24mp sensors, the SR/VR/SS/IS/OS/VC cannot keep up. The tinniest movement can't be compensated for by all the stabilization systems - and therefore they need to catch up. I'm talking about handheld, and after I read about the issue with Nikon users, I compared my K-5 against my Sony A65 - and its staggeringly true ! And I gave my A-65 the advantage with a prime lens versus a Pentax kit lens, and the K-5 beat it badly handheld. So the A65 has got to go - to buy more Pentax lenses ! But the A-65 is still a hoot to use !

So the question here, is is the K-5iis sharper handheld against the K-3 handheld, and has the increase in speed of the SR been enough to compensate for the ultra fine pixels ?

04-17-2014, 04:50 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by zoolander Quote
So the question here, is is the K-5iis sharper handheld against the K-3 handheld, and has the increase in speed of the SR been enough to compensate for the ultra fine pixels ?
The K-3 is sharper handheld in the sense that you get more detail in your images. I think that the fact that you're comparing two separate brands may have something to do with it; Pentax's implementation of SR could simply be more effective.

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04-17-2014, 05:12 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
The K-3 is sharper handheld in the sense that you get more detail in your images. I think that the fact that you're comparing two separate brands may have something to do with it; Pentax's implementation of SR could simply be more effective.
Thanks Adam, thats good to hear ! My A65 is going and its making way for a new lens for the K-5. Its IQ was just too digital compared to my K-5, and the K-5 images were always looking sharper - which I never understood until recently.

I'll try out the K-5iis and K-3 in a store thoroughly over the next few months and see how the SR goes. If indeed the K-3 IS sharper handheld, I'll be getting it as the final piece to the kit (I still wanna enjoy the K-5 for a while longer). But I do this now, because I don't wanna rush into buying camera bodies and take my time. I rushed to buy my Nikon, and A65 and didn't thoroughly research them, only to be disappointed (not so much by the A-65).

Thankyou !
04-18-2014, 01:29 AM - 1 Like   #11
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Zoolander,

Can't say I've come across your alias here before - I'm Alex

As the owner of both (K-5 IIs and K-3), I haven't noticed a difference in SR. I have, however, noticed a difference in the handheld keeper rate that you describe. Perhaps it was my lenses as Adam described (although that's doubtful as many of my lenses are very high quality). But I think the key is what was mentioned above:
QuoteOriginally posted by BrianR Quote
This is harder on the higher megapixel images as it's being magnified more.
When pixel peeping, I have noticed that I have had to really focus more on my technique to really bring out the quality in that sensor. I don't notice it at web sizes - if anything the flaws are hidden a little bit because it's downsized that much more. But viewing at 100% it becomes more apparent. Something also to be aware of is what that pixel magnification means. Here's an example taken from the recent HD 55-300 WR In-Depth Review comparing the magnification between the consumer lens and the DA* 60-250, across both the 16 and 24 AA-less mpx cameras.



If you want the 100% crop version (that isn't 100% but slightly downsized for the web) to explore, click here.

Something that is more valuable than just the pixels/resolution is how you plan to use the cameras. If it is just snaps here and there, then I would recommend the K-5 IIs. If you are interested in sports, wildlife, where the improved AF, more focus points, and high speed fps burst are critical, or landscape, where you will be deliberate and with a tripod, the K-3 will be of benefit to you. Weddings or other professionally paid work would benefit from the K-3 because of the dual SD card slots (where you can simultaneously mirror the two cards to record the same thing for a backup). If you are a studio photographer, then you may be interested in the FluCard which allows not only remote transfer of the files (like any EyeFi WiFi card) but also remote live view and remote capture from your phone, tablet, or computer (or WiFi enabled smart TV if you have one).

For me, going back to being deliberate - I have found myself becoming way more deliberate lately. Recently I just returned from Scotland (still working on the pics - they will be posted here when I get a chance - in the middle of moving my house ), and I used a tripod for at least 50% of my shots. Normally on a trip like that the tripod was mostly in a situation where it absolutely had to be used (i.e. long exposure, self portrait with no one to take the picture, etc.). Now, my focus had been, "I'm going to use ISO 100 as much as humanly possible" rather than relying on the high ISO ability. Just in that exercise the quality of my photographs have significantly increased (at least I think so ).

Lastly, and since you are planning to hold them in hand - the K-3 is slightly beefier, but not by much. But, it is in all the right places in my opinion. I used to the think the K-7/K-5/K-5 II(s) series of bodies was the end all be all, but somehow Pentax has improved upon that which I thought unimprovable. The K-3 is just so much more refined. I honestly think it's the best built DSLR on the planet. Including the 1DX/D4s types.

I know it seems like I am pushing the K-3 - I am: it's a phenomenal camera that really just improves on everything the K-5 IIs does. But if you aren't in need of any of those features, and it's just to upgrade your K-5, then your money is better spent on the K-5 IIs and the difference applied to a really good lens (a Limited?).

Hope this helps.

-Heie
04-18-2014, 04:01 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Heie Quote
Zoolander,

Can't say I've come across your alias here before - I'm Alex

As the owner of both (K-5 IIs and K-3), I haven't noticed a difference in SR. I have, however, noticed a difference in the handheld keeper rate that you describe. Perhaps it was my lenses as Adam described (although that's doubtful as many of my lenses are very high quality). But I think the key is what was mentioned above:


When pixel peeping, I have noticed that I have had to really focus more on my technique to really bring out the quality in that sensor. I don't notice it at web sizes - if anything the flaws are hidden a little bit because it's downsized that much more. But viewing at 100% it becomes more apparent. Something also to be aware of is what that pixel magnification means. Here's an example taken from the recent HD 55-300 WR In-Depth Review comparing the magnification between the consumer lens and the DA* 60-250, across both the 16 and 24 AA-less mpx cameras.



If you want the 100% crop version (that isn't 100% but slightly downsized for the web) to explore, click here.

Something that is more valuable than just the pixels/resolution is how you plan to use the cameras. If it is just snaps here and there, then I would recommend the K-5 IIs. If you are interested in sports, wildlife, where the improved AF, more focus points, and high speed fps burst are critical, or landscape, where you will be deliberate and with a tripod, the K-3 will be of benefit to you. Weddings or other professionally paid work would benefit from the K-3 because of the dual SD card slots (where you can simultaneously mirror the two cards to record the same thing for a backup). If you are a studio photographer, then you may be interested in the FluCard which allows not only remote transfer of the files (like any EyeFi WiFi card) but also remote live view and remote capture from your phone, tablet, or computer (or WiFi enabled smart TV if you have one).

For me, going back to being deliberate - I have found myself becoming way more deliberate lately. Recently I just returned from Scotland (still working on the pics - they will be posted here when I get a chance - in the middle of moving my house ), and I used a tripod for at least 50% of my shots. Normally on a trip like that the tripod was mostly in a situation where it absolutely had to be used (i.e. long exposure, self portrait with no one to take the picture, etc.). Now, my focus had been, "I'm going to use ISO 100 as much as humanly possible" rather than relying on the high ISO ability. Just in that exercise the quality of my photographs have significantly increased (at least I think so ).

Lastly, and since you are planning to hold them in hand - the K-3 is slightly beefier, but not by much. But, it is in all the right places in my opinion. I used to the think the K-7/K-5/K-5 II(s) series of bodies was the end all be all, but somehow Pentax has improved upon that which I thought unimprovable. The K-3 is just so much more refined. I honestly think it's the best built DSLR on the planet. Including the 1DX/D4s types.

I know it seems like I am pushing the K-3 - I am: it's a phenomenal camera that really just improves on everything the K-5 IIs does. But if you aren't in need of any of those features, and it's just to upgrade your K-5, then your money is better spent on the K-5 IIs and the difference applied to a really good lens (a Limited?).

Hope this helps.

-Heie
Thanks for your response Alex, my alias being from one of the funniest movies ever made ! I've been into digital photography for about 4 or 5 years and I think I'll still be a beginner for a long time yet. I've enjoyed reading your input on Pentax forums a few times, and I remember the youtube video with the sand and water.

So you think you need to improve upon the technique to get the most out of the 24 mega pixels. I did read your technique discussion where you relate the technique of army sharp shooters, and their breathing techniques on Pentax forums. I've been trying that sort of stuff for a few years now, and I hope to improve even further.

I'm thinking I'm going to have to go to a camera store and try a K-5iis and K-3 out and compare on this one issue. Where I live the K-3 is only $300 more and I'm working and I can afford it. First I'll be building a better kit then I have right now, because I bought my K-5 when I was at college and didn't have the bucks to blow on costly lenses. There's a lot to think about, but I'm very impressed with the K-3's IQ against the likes of Nikon D800's. So I was sold on Pentax after I saw the IQ of the K-5, and also researched Pentax lenses and saw the sharpness they achieve. I gotta put the K-5iis and K-3 through my hands and be a little pest down at the camera store !

Thanks Alex
04-18-2014, 01:38 PM   #13
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Buy better lenses while you wait the price of the K-3 to come down. YouŽll need better lenses anyway...
04-19-2014, 04:13 AM   #14
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Zoo lander

I would agree with Alex here. Technique is everything. Shake reduction is only as good as the person holding the camera. While there are claims around with 3 1/2 stop improvements, this is 1 1/2 stops from what???

Bad technique will not yield sharp shots even at the golden rule of 1/FL.

I also agree that as the resolution goes up, there is a tendency to zoom in further and look at images pixel by pixel.

At this level the golden rule goes out the window any way, because it was based upon a point source being enlarged (on an 8x10 print) to 1/100 of an inch. I know when I look at my images mapped 1:1 for pixels on my monitor, my entire image would be in the order of about 60 inches by 40 inches. To get the same 1/100 of an inch apparent sharpness, I need to be a lot better than the old golden rule
04-21-2014, 04:30 AM   #15
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Here's Ed from photouniverse, I think he also clears it up for me in this video (Plus I just spent an hour or more watching he's series of video's where he reviews the K-3):


Thanks Ed ! (I wonder why he always seems to be rubbing at his nose in a lot of his video's. Must be he has a bad habit !)

---------- Post added 04-21-14 at 09:34 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by carrrlangas Quote
Buy better lenses while you wait the price of the K-3 to come down. YouŽll need better lenses anyway...
Yeah I'm looking into it, I should be getting something this week, and jeez its tormenting me - what to get ! I'm reading review after review, and contradiction after contradiction, and then you look at something thing else that catches your eye, and you then add a third lens to your choices. Arrrgh !
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