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05-14-2010, 02:12 PM   #1
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k20d vs nikon d5000?

Is there any merit in comparing these two camera bodies, leaving out the video capabilities? The reason is because I am contemplating on moving to that system however i do love Pentax....so..hence my question.

Thanks

05-14-2010, 02:56 PM   #2
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It's very difficult to answer that question meaningfully.

Your question is rather like saying, "I live in San Francisco. Should I move to New York?"

You might fill in what kind of photography you currently do and hope to do; exactly what lenses you own and hope to own; and what you hope to gain by changing systems.

Then people will have a starting point to give you suggestions.
05-14-2010, 03:09 PM   #3
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Perhaps you might look beyond the single camera body and consider the system instead. See what you like in each system and go for it.
05-14-2010, 03:31 PM   #4
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For what it is worth, I chose the K-x over the D5000 and very glad I did.

For me lense compatibility was an issue and the D5000 is hampered by lack of built in auto-focus motor.

As the others say, it depends what you need it for and want to do in the future.

05-14-2010, 03:38 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by kiwi_jono Quote
For what it is worth, I chose the K-x over the D5000 and very glad I did.

For me lense compatibility was an issue and the D5000 is hampered by lack of built in auto-focus motor.

As the others say, it depends what you need it for and want to do in the future.
I was going to jump in and say the D90 would be a closer model to compare instead of the D5000. But you beat me to it with a better comparison.

I did own the D90 Nikon and while there are some things I will miss from that platform, I have not looked back since buying the K20D
05-14-2010, 03:59 PM   #6
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Out of curiosity, Riktar, what was it that you found so appealing about the K20D that was worth switching systems? The K20D does certainly have some advantages, such as the weather sealing and shake reduction, but the D90 has the better sensor, don't you think? What was it that made it worth jumping from Nikon to Pentax and not looking back?
05-14-2010, 08:40 PM   #7
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They really are quite different, the K20d and the class of camera you're talking about. Consider the K20d to be on the model of a 'budget semi-pro' camera, thanks to the price: the little video capable ones are of a newer generation with lots of whizbang in a slightly-smaller package.

The K-x would probably be a better comparison, though with the K20d you have ...something very different for a choice, so it might be a worthwhile exercise to think about what you like in a camera body.

I sure wouldn't consider trading, but the K20d's just such a good fit for me personally: first and foremost, you have the full controls there, a body with enough heft, and you don't have to baby the fellows so much, weather seals and everything like that. Better compatibility with old lenses than most grades of Nikon bodies, and, well, there's a lot to like. It's more akin to what I'm used to, though, and 'feels like a real camera,' too.

So, it's kind of a question of what you want, really. The K-x does seem to be getting great reviews as a little video-capable fellow, though.
05-15-2010, 06:08 AM - 1 Like   #8
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This may be a bit long winded,,,

QuoteOriginally posted by ManWithCamera Quote
Out of curiosity, Riktar, what was it that you found so appealing about the K20D that was worth switching systems? The K20D does certainly have some advantages, such as the weather sealing and shake reduction, but the D90 has the better sensor, don't you think? What was it that made it worth jumping from Nikon to Pentax and not looking back?
I am going start by saying the Pentax "system" was just a better fit for me. The following will get a bit long winded.

1. Weather sealing. It is SO nice to be able to get out in the elements and not have to concern myself with the equipment as much as I do the subject.

2. Shake reduction. As I get older, I am getting shakier. Being able to attach ANY lens I want and have that benefit is a major plus to me.

3. The D90 purchase was a "snap" decision the evening before I was invited to shoot as a second photographer for a wedding. The Sigma SD14 I was using (By the way, the SD14 is a GREAT camera, in a very specific way) was so out of it's element in the lousy lighting the ceremony was shot in I opted to run into Best Buy (15 minutes before closing) on the way home from the rehearsal and snap up a D90 system with a 360 flash.

I will say this for the Nikon system: They have the best flash to camera metering system I have ever used. You could hand that camera to anyone (set in P mode) and even with the 2nd level flash (360) the camera takes good shots. I have previously shot with a SD14, a Canon system (40D with 17-55mm f/2.8 and 580 flash) and none of them can match how well that little D90 did with 2nd level equipment.

And while I knew that my search for first level (Or Pro if you prefer) lenses was going to be as pricey as my Canon experience (I had a 70-200 f/2.8 IS lens. What a lens!) I figured that the Nikon was so good with basic equipment it would be that much better than the Canon for the same price.

I had never read a review of the K20D even though the camera was released 2 months prior to my "snap" purchase.

4. Image quality and detail. Imagine my reaction when Imaging Resource FINALLY did a review of the camera and I had a chance to read about it. The final kicker was doing the Comparometer (I do do pixel peep, so sue me) on high ISO shots between the K20D and the other cameras I have used. The K20D shots had WAY more detail than the D90 did. I am (now) convinced that all the noise (pun intended) about how well the Nikon D90, D300, Dwhatever shoots high ISO comes from the heavy-handed Chroma noise formula they use. Because when they are compared side by side, there was no question the K20D just stomped all over the D90 and my (former) 40D in detail retention.

So while it may take a bit more work and setup to shoot in low light with a Pentax system, you will have more to work with in post processing.

5. Focus speed. The K20D does not focus as fast as the D90 or 40D I have used. But if you have ever used a Sigma SD14 (Don't get me started) and have found a way to work with that level of speed, you will be MORE than happy with the K20D. Do I wish it was a bit faster? Sure. Is it fast enough for me? YES.

6. System upgrades. I am not made of money. My former camera purchases revolved around a bit of luck in a buy/sell arrangement on Ebay that netted me enough money to buy my friend's Rebel 300 and 28-135mm lens over 3 years ago. From there I made VERY calculated purchases that allowed me to upgrade through the Canon system, the Sigma system, and the Nikon system before "discovering" the Pentax system with the K20D as the core. In retrospect, if ANY website had done a thorough review of the K20D before I started my jump from the Canon system I would have never even bothered with the Nikon and Sigma stuff.

7. Price. Which could be stated as value. For the money, I feel the Pentax system gives you the most bang for the buck. However, if Hoya/Pentax keeps raising there price on lenses they are going to negate that advantage rather quickly. But for now they still have that advantage.

And I do get a kick out of trolling the want ads (And Goodwill, believe it or not) for old K mount lenses that are selling for perversely low prices. Someday I will get the adapter that allows me to start trying some of the old M42 screw mounts as well.

8. Control layout. The K20D has the best dual wheel placement of anyone. I can't speak for Nikon since I never shot with a D300, but the Canon system is the absolute dumbest style/layout ever. Forget the fact that the back wheel on a 40D is (for me anyway) in an awkward position for my thumb to find. Putting the front wheel on the same plane as the shutter trigger and so close resulted in more misfires from tripping the shutter than I care to recount. I realize this is a very subjective point, but hey, I am the one who has to use it right?

One area I ALWAYS skip over in reviews is any sentence that has the word intuitive in it. That is the one thing that can't be properly addressed in a review since it is a personal decision as to what is intuitive. This is just a side note and so I digress.

9. Prime lens quality. I never shot a prime on the D90, but I did (50mm f/1.8 and 85mm f/1.8) on the 40D. I recently picked up an old, discontinued FA 50mm f/1.7 and am still just blown away by the shots I get. And this in comparison to going through some of my old Canon "prime" pictures. Maybe I am getting better with practice and that's why the shots I am now getting are so much better than ALL the old shots taken with a different primes/systems. I'll try getting drunk or banging my head against a wall and then shooting more shots to see if that is the difference.
But the shots from that "old" lens are enough for me to consider selling my Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 and getting a FA 35mm or a Sigma 28mm f/1.8, or (GASP) a 31mm limited.

But that will have be another windfall deal since my day to day income and expenses won't allow an outright purchase. And with the downturn in the economy, the photographer who employs me as a gopher/2nd shooter hasn't had as many jobs/bookings so the side income has become scarce.

So to put a (much) shorter answer to your original question: The D90 is better at firing from the hip and getting a "usable" image than the K20D. But if you take the time, and use experience to take the shot, the final image will yield a better result coming from the Pentax.

Any other question?


Last edited by Riktar; 05-15-2010 at 06:13 AM. Reason: replace wheel for trigger.
05-15-2010, 08:24 PM   #9
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i dont have anymore question,,,,
its ALL already answer ...
05-16-2010, 06:13 AM   #10
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K20d or Nikon...

Has the OP asked this same question on the Nikon forum ???????
05-16-2010, 08:09 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by quiksilver Quote
Is there any merit in comparing these two camera bodies, leaving out the video capabilities? The reason is because I am contemplating on moving to that system however i do love Pentax....so..hence my question.

Thanks
Pardon my being curt, but ummmm "NO"
05-16-2010, 03:03 PM   #12
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i have read over your replies and i did leave out what sort of photography i would be more geared towards. Right now i have some gigs doing event photography so low light is always something to think about for me. I would like to do some outdoor shoots with models as well.
So the reason i said D5000 in my case as due to me being able to use it a couple of times after i have posted the thread. I have found that the low light VR 18-50mm kit lens that im using with the nikon did deliver better quality results. I am comparing to my current IST DL camera though.
I know that it would be better quality just due to it being a new camera. But right now budget is a dillema and some of the lenses i have seen for pentax that are worthwhile ar 450+ for the * zooms in the 2.8 range.
That being said i would like to grow into some better lenses which in my case i do not own good enough lenses to justify staying on Pentax. I do have a 50 m 1.7 which i consider the best lens i carry. Wide angle is important for the night club events that i sometimes do. Thanks for the replies and im thinking very carefully on what step to do but i must act fast becuase i want to upgrade as soon as possible.
05-16-2010, 03:07 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Daveinozbikes Quote
Has the OP asked this same question on the Nikon forum ???????
No i have not but i did lurk the forums for that specific topic and they said pretty much the same as here. The main point that i would deter me from getting the Nikon for good is the built in focus that it doesnt have in that particular model D5000. I cannot go more than that budger hence why i was thinking of the k20d and a nice SMC Pentax-DA* 16-50mm F2.8 and a 50m FA which would cover most of what i do. However i would love to get my hands on a 85mm prime that handles good low light as well for good measure.
05-16-2010, 04:24 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by quiksilver Quote
No i have not but i did lurk the forums for that specific topic and they said pretty much the same as here. The main point that i would deter me from getting the Nikon for good is the built in focus that it doesnt have in that particular model D5000. I cannot go more than that budger hence why i was thinking of the k20d and a nice SMC Pentax-DA* 16-50mm F2.8 and a 50m FA which would cover most of what i do. However i would love to get my hands on a 85mm prime that handles good low light as well for good measure.
You could go with a new or slightly used K-7 with the AF assist beam, a Tamron 17-50 f2.8 Dii, and the D-fa smcp 50 f1.4 for about the same money. The end result is that the k-7 is faster focusing in low light then the K20D, and the K-x. Going with Tamron will save you some money, and getting the fa 50 fa 1.4 will work for portraits. Going with Nikon will cost possibly more as you are restricted to a certain set of "new" lens with the built in motor and having to decide if you want shake reduction which will cost extra as well. The only nice affordable offering that I've seen is the Af-s 35mm f1.8 on Nikon's side. I hope that helps!
05-16-2010, 11:27 PM   #15
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Thanks for the reply theperception2008
I guess I will sleep on this. I do appreciate all of the responses that eveyone has given.
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