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02-14-2009, 05:05 AM   #1
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New to digital SLR

I love my fully manual film SLR over my automatic, and usually complain when using other peoples' digitals because they seem to be so completely automated and confusing. I have a P&S digital with zoom, but am frustrated with the lack of control, and find that pictures I could have got with my SLR are lost because the action has moved out of the frame by the time the shutter clicks. I know how pictures would look with the film camera, and am often disappointed when I use my digital, especially with the flash.

So... I happened upon an ad for the K10D and liked what I read, especially what sounded like way more manual control without the really confusing scene modes. I basically would like a digital that will give me the same kind of control as my manual SLR, but know that automatic settings can be really useful at time.

I like to shoot bike races, nature, architecture, and unposed portraits. I basically want a camera that I can use for everything, given that I am not a professional, and probably can't really afford this purchase.

I know this is long, but I want advice, and you need to know this about my tastes to advise me well. K10D, K200D, or wait until I can afford the K20D )or has it used, cheap)? Or are there other suggestions?


Last edited by BassGrrl; 02-14-2009 at 05:24 AM.
02-14-2009, 06:30 AM   #2
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Have you handled any DSLR?
More or less they are all the same. Very similar to advanced megazooms, with manual features only better image quality and exchangable lenses.
Only pentax have some support for older/manual stuff, but its not the same as on film camera.
They also have smaller viewfinder/actual focal lengths, wich also may result in different expierience, than film.
What kind of film SLR are you reffering to? There is no DSLR wich is similar to something like Pentax ME.
02-14-2009, 06:36 AM   #3
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I haven't used all the Pentax models. I haven't even seen all the Pentax models. Like you, I don't care for the "scene modes". I do like having two dials, one front and one back. Having one dial and pressing a button to switch it from aperture to shutter speed, or whatever, isn't convenient for me.

I like my K10D and would probably like the K20D.
02-14-2009, 07:19 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by ytterbium Quote
Have you handled any DSLR?
More or less they are all the same. Very similar to advanced megazooms, with manual features only better image quality and exchangable lenses.
Only pentax have some support for older/manual stuff, but its not the same as on film camera.
They also have smaller viewfinder/actual focal lengths, wich also may result in different expierience, than film.
What kind of film SLR are you reffering to? There is no DSLR wich is similar to something like Pentax ME.

I have used a couple of friends' DSLRs at parties and shows, but was pretty unsure of what I was doing. They always seem to have to fiddle a lot to get around to taking a picture. I am sure they are not as restricting as the P&S ones with their stupid programs and scene modes. I never really see the difference. I like a camera when I have much more control over all the settings, from shutter speed to f/stop.

My film SLRs are Minoltas, but I used the Pentax K-1000 at school in photography classes. I like my film cameras, but can see that there are times when digital is preferable (easier to modify the images, no waste on pictures you don't like, easy to share online), so am seriously thinking about getting one.

02-14-2009, 08:49 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by BassGrrl Quote
I have used a couple of friends' DSLRs at parties and shows, but was pretty unsure of what I was doing. They always seem to have to fiddle a lot to get around to taking a picture. I am sure they are not as restricting as the P&S ones with their stupid programs and scene modes. I never really see the difference. I like a camera when I have much more control over all the settings, from shutter speed to f/stop.

My film SLRs are Minoltas, but I used the Pentax K-1000 at school in photography classes. I like my film cameras, but can see that there are times when digital is preferable (easier to modify the images, no waste on pictures you don't like, easy to share online), so am seriously thinking about getting one.
BassGrrl, not trying to dissuade you from Pentax, but if your film cameras are Minoltas and you already have whatever investment you do have in Minolta compatible glass then have you considered Sony Alpha. I know that some Minolta fans/users consider Sony the Axis of Evil but they did manage to bring a failing camera company back from the edge of extinction.
02-14-2009, 09:17 AM   #6
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I've used film longer than digital, but I have to admit, I like digital better....but I'm a more techy-minded individual. Personally, I think my photography has improved with the inclusion of digital to my system and I have shot digital pretty much exclusively for the last couple years (since my K10D). I know this isn't everyone's opinion, but I just think for myself digital is more convenient. I just don't have room for the darkroom anymore and the computer is just less of a hassle to use (for me). Plus, I was never a master at darkroom techniques (again a time thing...I don't do this as my career) and Photoshop is cleaner and quicker...and I can do more with it.

I also like manual modes. I cannot stand scene modes. I have both a K10D and a K20D. Personally, I think they are the perfect camera for the advanced user going to digital. They are very intuative and easy to use...everything is right there. I also agree that two dials are better than one...gives you complete control without leaving the viewfinder. I would recommend either of these bodies, especially if you are already an experienced photographer.

Of course, I'm speaking as a Pentax film user as well, so I had glass already. But as was stated, there is a ton of used manual glass out there that is compatible with the Pentax DSLRs and every bit as good as the new stuff...and a lot cheaper.

My two cents!
02-14-2009, 09:38 AM   #7
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I loved the K10D as soon as I picked it up. It is very easy to use in manual mode. Turn the setting to M and leave it there. The dials in front and behind the shutter button control the shutter speed and aperture. Turn the dials until the meter reads 0 on the + to - exposure scale and shoot. You can use it exactly as you would a "match needle meter" manual camera while you learn all newfangled digital stuff. The K20D works just the same.
02-14-2009, 03:08 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by WheresWaldo Quote
I know that some Minolta fans/users consider Sony the Axis of Evil but they did manage to bring a failing camera company back from the edge of extinction.
Heheheh! Not to go off topic here, but I thought Disney was the axis of evil!

I am loyal to an oooold Minolta SRT 200, and haven't kept up with the recent doings of the company. It never occurred to me the lenses might be usable on a digital. I figure I'm going to need new lenses regardless of the company, and as has been pointed out, I can use old Pentax manual lenses, which I have seen quite cheap.

There is actually a K10D for sale on here, it's just a matter of whether I can do this now. I would save on film and processing and have the opportunity to get creative before printing, as I don't have a darkroom (if I did, I might not be thinking about this so seriously). Also, since i don't have a scanner, I would be able to share photos more easily.

Thank you all so much for your feedback and suggestions (I did check out the Sony Alpha, but now that I have been exposed to the K10D and 20D, it just doesn't sound as good. But not because I am a loyal Minolta user.). Keep them coming if you like.

I may wait until I have more money, and see if I can get the K20D instead. of course, by tomorrow morning, I may decide that will be too far in the future...

02-14-2009, 04:32 PM   #9
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Using a dslr isn't much different than using a film camera. Back in my ME Super days my camera had a light meter in the view finder. I had three things I could change, film ISO, aperature, and shutter speed. Once I choose my film I then had to decide if shutter speed was more important or aperature. Which ever it was, that is the one I set and then I adjusted the other until the light meter fell into the correct location.

The same is true for digital. Once I choose my ISO, I then decide if aperature (Av mode) or shutter speed (Tv mode) is most important. Which ever it is, that is the one I set and then the camera adjusts the other for correct exposure. However, I then have the option of adding to or taking away from the camera choosen setting by using exposure adjustment or chaning the ISO.

I'm not the most prolific shooter on this forum (5000 or so exposures in 3 1/2 years) but I figured that my new DS (~ $700 in 2005) paid for itself in the first year and a half when compared to film and development costs.

I'm sure you would enjoy any of the Pentax models available once you had a chance to play around a bit. I have one of the oldest models out there (DS) and the cheapest auto focus lenses (DA18-55 and DA 50-200) and I continue to be amazed at what I am able to capture.







Good luck with your search.

Tim

Tim
02-14-2009, 08:06 PM   #10
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You can shoot all manual with digital SLRs., I do it a lot with my old lenses. Even go out with a hand held light meter now and then to go really old school, it's fun !!

Here are a few full manual shots from my "light meter" outing.






Last edited by Stratman; 02-14-2009 at 08:18 PM.
02-14-2009, 09:57 PM   #11
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Thanks, you guys! I have seen the work and hear fully manual is possible. You can trell my experience with digitals is mostly limited to non-SLRs, and I never got the chance to get to know the SLRs I have used. I am also looking at the DS now, just for comparison if nothing else.

Thanks again.
02-16-2009, 05:42 PM   #12
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After some research, it appears the manual Minolta lenses are not compatible with the Sony Alpha, so I'd be starting new. I have one autofocus zoom that I bought by accident, but that hardly makes it worth it.

I haven't heard back about the used K10D on here, and am now considering a K20D package that is beyond my means, but if I use my credit card... Body comes with an extra battery, Pentax DA 18-55mm AL II and Pentax DA 50-200mm ED lenses, two UV filters, 4 gb SD card, lens cleaning kit and mini tripod, for $1,100 Canadian. Plus taxes, I guess. Includes the usual as well (software, lens and body caps, hoods, charger, cables, etc.). It sounds good for a starter. What do you think?

A bit more than twice what the K10D would cost with the 18-50mm lens.
02-17-2009, 03:25 AM   #13
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BassGrrl,

I LOVE my K10d, LOVE it.
It has great controls too. I think either the K10 or K20(on you credit card.lol) will be a good match for you.

Good Luck.
Chris.
02-17-2009, 09:38 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by crispy0009 Quote
BassGrrl,

I LOVE my K10d, LOVE it.
It has great controls too. I think either the K10 or K20(on you credit card.lol) will be a good match for you.

Good Luck.
Chris.
I have decided to live within my means, and got the K10D and lens. Since I saved some money in the process, I could always get a good lens! Now the question is, which lens? The body comes with what I suspect is the kit lens, 18-50 mm II, he said (I pick it up tomorrow, so I haven't actually seen it).

Any recommendations on what lens, keeping in mind I should not spend a lot just yet, but want something I'll want to keep?

Cheers all, I am so excited about my new purchase (and trying to convince myself it makes sense, despite already having a hefty investment in a film camera and lenses).
02-17-2009, 10:25 AM   #15
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You could go with a Pentax-SMC 50mm manual F2 or 1.7, which you probably can find somewhere in the Marketplace forums for @ $30 USD for the F2, maybe $35-45 for the 1.7. (I've bought some from hell..........i mean, ebay, for dirt cheap). You could also check the Pentax lens forums to see what glass they have listed that comes close to the type of photography you're used to doing. There's always a wide assortment listed everywhere in the forums here and i'm sure someone can point the way to them.
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