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01-27-2011, 06:00 PM   #1
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Handling Differences between Pentax and other brands

I have a Pentax K-x, and I love how it handles, the buttons are responsive, the user interface nice and clean, and it's overall very easy to navigate and change settings.
So today, a friend of mine asked me to teach her how to use her Nikon D40x better, and I was dumbfounded at how hard it was to use and how different it was!
The shooting screen went off after a few seconds, and it didn't come back on after you half pressed the shutter release. Also, the exposure meter was reversed. Overexposed on the left side, underexposed on the right side. I also had a hard time adjusting the shutter speed, because it simply displayed "100" or "250" (1/100 or 1/250)

I want to teach my friends more about photography, but it's hard when you can't handle the cameras. (One's that aren't Pentax, of course! )
Anyone willing to share major differences (or minor) differences you've found when handling different brands of cameras?

01-27-2011, 06:09 PM   #2
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yeah,

I have a K1000, man it's totally backwards.

First, the center of the eyepiece shows a little circle and the image isn't aligned unless the shot is completely focused!. Second, I have to use this weird brown stuff called film, it too me a good hour to figure out how to use it, and then when I went to go get this "film" processed, all of my pictures came out black!

Oh, and the exposure...apparently...is some non-specific dial that goes up and down until it's just right....

01-27-2011, 06:14 PM   #3
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All Nikon meters are 'backwards' - the first Nikons were that way, so they stuck with it. You can reverse it on the digital cameras though AFAIK - it'll be in the settings menu I guess.

Can't add much more - I had a bit of a play with my brother's D40 a few months back and quite liked it.
01-27-2011, 06:17 PM   #4
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My Pakticas has this weird thing called an aperture ring, so instead of having a little wheel that you turn to change the aperture and having a light up display tell you what you'd selected and to confirm that it had been changed, there was just a ring on the lens with positive click stops, and a little window in the pentaprism so you could see the actual aperture ring through the viewfinder. :-)

01-27-2011, 06:34 PM   #5
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GASP!
I thought film was an urban legend!
Yes, I know what an aperture ring is, and what a split-image focusing screen is.
Don't really appreciate the sarcasm...it's hard to tell what people really mean in their replies...
01-27-2011, 06:41 PM   #6
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About all you can do is teach your friend how to take better pictures, not how to use the camera. I also have a friend who bought the D40 because it was cheap. One look at it and I tried not to groan.
01-27-2011, 06:50 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by AOShep Quote
About all you can do is teach your friend how to take better pictures, not how to use the camera. I also have a friend who bought the D40 because it was cheap. One look at it and I tried not to groan.
Wise words. Haha this one didn't know what "aperture" was. She still walked away confused, so I lent her my Bryan Peterson book. Now, by no means is the D40/40x is a bad camera. I'm just not familiar with it.
And yes, negative on the right and positive on the left makes total sense...
Apparently it was something about the design of their old film SLRs..
01-27-2011, 07:42 PM   #8
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QuoteQuote:
Don't really appreciate the sarcasm...it's hard to tell what people really mean in their replies...
Yeah sorry, I couldn't resist.

100% sarcasm, 0% helpful


01-28-2011, 09:18 AM   #9
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You could also assume some of the "handling" differences could be customized settings. You might find one or two members of this forum who have a camera like yours but if you pick it up you might find some things are a little alien.
I know there are diiferences with most manufacturers designs and functions. And it has been a few years since I handled a Nikon. It would take some getting use to I am sure.
01-28-2011, 12:48 PM   #10
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Nikon UI is just as good as Pentax, and pending the model you choose it's actually better.

I loved my IST-DS, K10's, and K-7's, but once I held and used Nikon I quickly got used to where the buttons were and would never go back to the prehistoric AF, poor metering, lame flash use and lack of speed in the Pentax bodies.

c[_]
01-28-2011, 03:56 PM   #11
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I love the layout of my Km. After playing with many of the models that were released this year such as the Kx, D3000, D3100, D5000, XS, T1i, Nex5, and A300. I found that the only one that I could really get use to were the Kx and the Nex5. The other models felt very alien to me. I'm not saying that I couldn't get eventually use to it. However for a first timer I think the Pentax interface is very simple and concise. I recall my first couple of shots with my camera weren't that terrible at all and I think most of that had to do with being able to find and change settings quickly. For pleasing to look at. The Nikon and the Nex5 definitely has the wow factor in terms of refinement. The XS I played with was just dull. The Kx I didn't really like either. Seemed like they wanted to make the button touch screen compatible but figured out it isn't a touch screen. Just my opinion though. I think others will disagree.
02-01-2011, 04:16 AM   #12
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Recently bought my daughter a D90 after her K200D was stolen (long story - decided to change brands because she intends to be photo-journ and Pentax is so scarce here in South Africa. She really misses her K200D).

Anyway, point of story is that there is a huge learning curve to get used to another brand of camera. The D90 is a fantastic camera, but somehow lacks the spark especially in the vibrancy of the colours. The controls are very different.

In a same way the controls of a K20 are different to the K200. Entry level cameras have more menu driven features, higher end cameras have more dedicated controls.

Sigma zooms are based on the Canon system, which is opposite to the Pentax.

Same issue with driving different cars.

Does one standardise and get a bland product or does one encourage difference? Me, I prefer to have some standardisation (shutter in same position!) but allow differences to permit innovation and new features.
02-01-2011, 07:56 AM   #13
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I once tried a I think 7D in a shop... besides being way to heavy (are they expecting me to go to the gym just to be able to use that thing for more than a few minutes?!) I spent minutes figuring out how to use it... didn't really succeed. It really dumbfounded me. With the *istDs I had no previous experience with DSLRs (only, long time ago, with a Nikon FM2), but I felt right at home and quickly figured out how to select aperture, exposure time and ISO. Of course also no problems figuring out the K7 and K5. The 7D just baffled me. Also, the buttons just feel weird (same goes to the D7000), just the haptics... not as nice to press.

Anyway, you can still teach the concept of ISO, aperture and exposure time etc.

Ps: I really miss that aperture ring... that's the good thing about using old lenses, you get to use aperture rings again.
11-19-2011, 10:53 PM   #14
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i've tried my friends 7D and also another friends D3100.
using dials on the 7D trips me out, I had to ask him what do I have to hold/press to change apeture.
D3100 was easier compared t 7D.

But for both, it wasn't hard to change shutter speed, apeture or see if its going to be over/under expose. but it was actually changing settings;
eg:.
- where do I find out to change the iso
- how do i set this to AF select
- how about center-weighted

those setting I HAVE NO IDEA how to get too.

then again if you had the camera of a day or two, I'm sure youll be able to find out where this and thats are in any camera.

PS. 7D is a massive camera O_o lolz
11-19-2011, 11:31 PM   #15
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I once tried to set custom white balance on a Rebel and I gave up. The Nikon controls don't look very friendly either - I get the impression that they are used for multiple functions based on all those icons.

It's interesting, because if you go to compact cameras, there's really not much difference - the scarcity of controls means that you will always find the same subset of buttons, clearly labeled. Actually, the Pentax DSLR interface feels as simple as that of a P&S - they reduced the buttons to basic functions you actually need to use most of the time and they identified them with clear icons.
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