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01-25-2010, 10:47 PM   #1
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Bought a K-x, now what?

Hi,
I'm new here on the forum, and on the photography world. I'm interested in learning more about photography, and just bought myself a Pentax K-x from Amazon (the 2 lenses kit).
But my camera is almost "naked": I haven't bought nothing else besides the camera itself. And as a newbie in the area, I would like some help about what should I do now and what should I buy:

Memory card: How important is the speed? Can I see difference between a "Class 4" and a "Class 6" SD card on everyday use?

Batteries: I'm thinking of buying eneloop AA batteries. Is this a good choice?

Case/Bag: Is there any guideline to follow when buying a case for my camera?
Tripod: Should I buy a tripod now? The smaller ones can aid me, or they are to small for SLR cameras?

Lenses: I have the 2 lenses kit; should I buy more lenses yet? I do not want to expend much money on lenses now, is it worth to buy some cheap lenses and later buy better ones? I read in many places that a good start point is a fast 50mm lens, is that so?

Lenses 2:As I am interested in taking pictures with bokeh but fast lenses are a bit expensive, I'm considering buying a lensbaby. Is it worth the money? Or it is too complicated for a newbie to use?

Many thanks for the help.

01-26-2010, 12:32 AM   #2
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Welcome to the forum.



QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
Hi,
I'm new here on the forum, and on the photography world. I'm interested in learning more about photography, and just bought myself a Pentax K-x from Amazon (the 2 lenses kit).
Read the manual
But my camera is almost "naked": I haven't bought nothing else besides the camera itself. And as a newbie in the area, I would like some help about what should I do now and what should I buy:
Read the manual again.

Memory card: How important is the speed? Can I see difference between a "Class 4" and a "Class 6" SD card on everyday use?
Go for the class 6 but don't worry too much, just make sure you get a reliable brand (Sandisk is most favoured) and get it from a reliable store.
Read the manual again.


Batteries: I'm thinking of buying eneloop AA batteries. Is this a good choice?
Eneloops are good. Make sure you download the latest firmware (it fixes battery issues, you can find it here - Latest K-x Firmware Update : Software Downloads : PENTAX follow the instructions carefully and make sure you have fully charged batteries.


Case/Bag: Is there any guideline to follow when buying a case for my camera?
Tripod: Should I buy a tripod now? The smaller ones can aid me, or they are to small for SLR cameras?
Get going with the camera first, there's plenty of time for that.


Lenses: I have the 2 lenses kit; should I buy more lenses yet? I do not want to expend much money on lenses now, is it worth to buy some cheap lenses and later buy better ones? I read in many places that a good start point is a fast 50mm lens, is that so?
The kit lenses are good value and pretty good. Learn with them to start with and when you find your feet, you will have an idea what to look for in another lens. Don't get caught up in buying stuff, enjoy your camera.

Lenses 2:As I am interested in taking pictures with bokeh but fast lenses are a bit expensive, I'm considering buying a lensbaby. Is it worth the money? Or it is too complicated for a newbie to use?
Again, find your feet and enjoy the kit you have to start with.

Many thanks for the help.
Read the bloody manual again.
01-26-2010, 03:16 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
Memory card: How important is the speed? Can I see difference between a "Class 4" and a "Class 6" SD card on everyday use?
Probably not. Maybe for video?

QuoteQuote:
Batteries: I'm thinking of buying eneloop AA batteries. Is this a good choice?
Absolutely.

QuoteQuote:
Case/Bag: Is there any guideline to follow when buying a case for my camera?
There are no magic secrets here - it should hold all the gear you want it to hold and be as easy to access as you nee it to be.

QuoteQuote:
Tripod: Should I buy a tripod now? The smaller ones can aid me, or they are to small for SLR cameras?
A general rule of thumb is for a tripod to weigh as much as the camera & lens if it's going to provide steady support. I've got several tripods, but rarely use them. Others use them all the time. Kind of a personal style thing. No question, it will give you steadier shots, if you can be bothered to bring it with you & set it up.

QuoteQuote:
Lenses: I have the 2 lenses kit; should I buy more lenses yet?
Until you have run into specific limitations with the lenses you have, I can't see a reaosn to buy more just for the sake of buying more. At some point, it should become clearer what you need (something wider, longer, faster, smaller, closer focusing, etc).

QuoteQuote:
Lenses 2:As I am interested in taking pictures with bokeh but fast lenses are a bit expensive, I'm considering buying a lensbaby. Is it worth the money? Or it is too complicated for a newbie to use?
I don't know about complicated, but it seems needlessly expensive if you just want to play with a fast lens. A cheap manual focus 50 makes way more sense it would seem to me. Not that 50mm is the ideal focal length for a first prime, but it's what's most easily and cheaply available (eg, $30 or so for an M50/1.7).
01-26-2010, 08:11 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
:
Memory card: How important is the speed? Can I see difference between a "Class 4" and a "Class 6" SD card on everyday use?
I don't know about with the K-x, but with the K10D, there was a slight but measurable difference. (Plus, it's always nicer to get the correspondingly faster read speeds when copying photos back off.)


QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
:Batteries: I'm thinking of buying eneloop AA batteries. Is this a good choice?
Yeah.

QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
:Case/Bag: Is there any guideline to follow when buying a case for my camera?
It's very individual. I keep buying new ones, because none is perfect. Sigh.

QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
:Tripod: Should I buy a tripod now? The smaller ones can aid me, or they are to small for SLR cameras?
Depends what you're doing. The cheap ones are better than nothing, but if you're serious, this is another $$$ accessory. Personally, I have a cheap one, because being tied in one place isn't my style. To others, that's heresy.

QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
:Lenses: I have the 2 lenses kit; should I buy more lenses yet? I do not want to expend much money on lenses now, is it worth to buy some cheap lenses and later buy better ones? I read in many places that a good start point is a fast 50mm lens, is that so?
It's sorta so. You should have a nice prime lens. But it's not necessarily a 50mm. One idea is to use your camera for a while and then make a chart of your most commonly-used focal lengths, and then buy the DA Limited that matches most closely.

QuoteOriginally posted by leommj Quote
:Lenses 2:As I am interested in taking pictures with bokeh but fast lenses are a bit expensive, I'm considering buying a lensbaby. Is it worth the money? Or it is too complicated for a newbie to use?
I love mine. It is wonderful. You get something different from normal lens bokeh, though -- it's more of a special-effects thing. There's really two ways to go: the Composer (and more-expensive Control Freak) are good for carefully set-up shots. But the Muse is more fun.

When I go out shooting with it, I get about a tenth -- or, maybe a hundredth -- of the keepers that I normally do, but I enjoy myself immensely. To me, it's a sort of distillation of one of the essential parts of photography I enjoy: you make some choices, you take a view of the world, you click, and then there's this one unique result combining all these factors into a frozen slice of time.

01-28-2010, 06:40 AM   #5
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i think there are lots of generic advice out there... i'll give you an oppinion, and you deffinetly don't have to agree with me.

bought two cases for my camera.

a pelican case is awesome, you can customize the foam on the inside and this case is indispensable for traveling in planes and trains and automobiles. if your camera is likely to get banged around then toss it in this case and you know it will be o/k. it's also a waterproof case, so if you are like me and go on canoe trips, no matter what happens you will be o/k with the camera in this case... just don't forget to close the lid.

the second case i got was the tamrac sling bag, if you can check these out i would. it currently holds a 80-205 zoom, a 75-300 zoom, a 50mm prime and the kit 18-55 lens and 2 sets of extra aa's and a few memory cards, my cell, and wallet, lens pen, cloth etc. it's also the size of a lunch bag and it is so easy to get into (sling style rocks to me) and if you need some extra support shooting near the end of you focal range, you can turn the bag to the front and rest your elbow on it to stop the shake. you can also swap lenses easily with the sling style bag because they are all accessible.

i got duracell batteries (rebadged eneloops) at Walmart (cringe) and the 15 min charger... most people say the 15 min charger is a bad idea but i shoot a lot and want my batteries to be charged in the time it takes me to download my pics onto the computer, then i can go shooting again!

hope that helps.
01-28-2010, 07:00 AM   #6
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Jumping into accessories right away is a good way to buy things you don't need. My advice is read the manual and take some pictures--lots of pictures. SD cards are cheap. Get a card into the camera and start taking photos. To start, just get the lithium batteries that came with the camera into it and take some photos. They will last you several hundred shots--for some it may even be a thousand.

Once you have a thousand or so shots under your belt, you will have a better idea how often you will shoot, what you will shoot and where you will shoot or even whether you like to shoot with this camera. A few thousand might be even better. Then, pick a tripod and go for the storage and power options that will suit you. Maybe the next accessory is something else, like an external flash.
01-28-2010, 10:34 AM   #7
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You have a good start with the camera and 2 lenses. Go out and shoot some pictures. For starters, maybe a bag will do but even that isn't mandatory as I doubt either lens that came with your kit would be too big to fit in a jacket pocket. A couple of SD cards will be handy to have so you don't have to keep downloading and reusing the same one. After shooting a month or two, you will have a better handle on what you want to do with the camera and what to purchase in the way of accessories.
01-28-2010, 11:22 AM   #8
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Always remember this equation: camera/lens + photographer + right light conditions = photos

Hardware-wise, you already got everything you need to get some very nice photos. Like others have said, go and play with what you already got.

Anything else you buy will just give you more opportunities to take more photos. But they will be useless if you will not take advantage of those additional opportunities.

For example, if you are finding that you can't take certain shots because there isn't enough light, then having a tripod or a decent flash or faster lens will give you more opportunities to take those shots in low light.

If you are finding, your camera is always running out of memory space, then having a higher capacity SD will give you more opportunities to shoot.

If you are finding you are missing lots of shots because you left some lenses or other accessories at home, then having a bag will help you there.

I think it is always better to buy stuff when you have actually encountered a certain limitation with your existing equipment which has stopped you from taking that photo you really wanted. Because when that happens, you will know better what you actually need to overcome that limitation.

Now of course, if you are planning to go on a once in a lifetime vacation, then you should have all of these things figured out before you go. But that's just mean you better start taking more photos now. Don't forget that reading the camera manual and some photography books and/or free photography related articles on the Internet can improve your results as much as, if not more than, getting more hardware. This is the part that improves the "photographer" in the above equation. You will notice that you can also improve the results of above equation simply by moving to a better location or waiting for the right one.


Last edited by ma318; 01-28-2010 at 11:54 AM.
02-22-2010, 12:10 PM   #9
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Now go out and shoot some pictures!
02-22-2010, 01:08 PM   #10
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I was in your shoes too having purchased my K-X back in December. It's also my first DSLR and I had wondered about accessories that I needed. Although I'd love to get a fast prime, I figured I would get better at composing and learning about exposure. You can still get that bokeh from the kit lens, although it's a little more difficult than a prime.

My first purchases were merely a camera bag, class 6 SD card, and the Eneloop batteries you mentioned. I bought the bag and batteries from Amazon. The price of the eneloops fluctuate typically from $28-34 for the power pack (8 AA's, 2 AAA's, charger, C & D adapters). Don't know if you have a Fry's nearby, but they often have an 8GB class 6 for $17.99 (Patriot brand).

To me these were indispensable as a "first" accessories purchase, especially if you're going to be walking around shooting.
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