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11-06-2011, 12:11 PM   #1
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Time to fish or cut bait...

About 3 years ago, I upgraded from my K100 to my K20. Its a wonderful camera, I like it a lot - and that is probably the main stumbling point and problem. Yes, I needed to have the sensor and main circuit boards replaced due to high noise (Pentax included the 2 year extended warranty with the K20), but its does "everything". The problem is trying to decide to go to the K5. I have been saving and essentially I am there. So why don't I just go ahead and order it? I don't know... I do know that the K5 will probably do "everything" better - at least I think - landscapes, cityscapes and low ambient light - evenings and night...

The increased DR and ISO 80 will help me, along with having the wired remote on the right side (cable will not interfere with the L bracket). Better noise control, and it has the GPS interface with AstroTracking, along with the ability to disable DFS, but no Tethering (from Pentax).

I ordered the K20 just a bit before the K7 was announced (like a week), and was pretty good a predicting that there was nothing new with the K7 that I could not live without. I don't know with the K3 or whatever they might call it.

I see that the Kr colors appear to be in limited supply, and suspect that the Kr will be replaced just prior to the K5 (same announcement sequence as the Kr/K5). I also have read that the K5 is starting to be heavily discounted in both Japan and China - to ~$950 US, and the timing points to early 2012 - 16 month product cycle - although Pentax appears to be running a bit late on the Kr product cycle of 12 months.

I really liked picking the K20 up near the end, provided great value, and so for me its starting slide into the decision time window. I am anticipating that its within the next 2 to 3 months, or wait out another product cycle - or 16 months or so. That is another aspect of my dilemma- The K20 is good enough to, I think take me thorough at least another product cycle. Will the images I could take, be substantially better than the images I will take?

I have been keeping up with the continuing saga of the K5. I'll just pick up the extended warranty. If something goes wrong, I'll just return it and get another - If I pull the trigger.

Is the K5 that much worthwhile over the K20? I was convinced with the K100.

My wife and I are scheduled to go on a cruise to Mexico in mid January - and I need to get a new passport - start that in a couple of minutes.... This could be nice to shoot the Mayan ruins with....



11-06-2011, 12:30 PM   #2
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I love the K20D that I bought 3.4 years ago, just before Hoya bought Pentax. But if I was buying now, I'd get a K5. Newer technology DOES make a difference. What the K5 doesn't have: tethering. What the K5 does have: a much better sensor. Have fun with the pyramids! Don't miss Tulum nor Chichen Itza. Too bad you won't see El Tajin at Papantla (north of Xalapa).
11-06-2011, 01:27 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
landscapes, cityscapes and low ambient light - evenings and night...
I'm pretty much in the same boat as you...love my K20D still, but at times, the noise in shadows doing nightscapes or low-key studio work is really annoying. I'm sure the K-5's sensor's dynamic range will help a lot as well the faster AF for portraits.

What bugs me is when Pentax changes the form factor though...I want to stick in another focusing screen and like my RRS plate...both would be new w/ a new form factor, so that has me holding off until the next version which will hopefully have a 24MP sensor (but with a bit more noise than the K-5), but that means yet another year w/ older "film" (and yes, you can live with it, but you always want the newest kind of film when you know it's much better )
11-06-2011, 08:05 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
I love the K20D that I bought 3.4 years ago, just before Hoya bought Pentax. But if I was buying now, I'd get a K5. Newer technology DOES make a difference. What the K5 doesn't have: tethering. What the K5 does have: a much better sensor. Have fun with the pyramids! Don't miss Tulum nor Chichen Itza. Too bad you won't see El Tajin at Papantla (north of Xalapa).
If I were replacing the K100, it would be the K5 - easy choice. Funny in the film days, you just go out and buy the new advanced roll of film and find a place that could process it for you. Today - you go get a new camera - it does not make a lot of sense....

QuoteOriginally posted by kenyee Quote
I'm pretty much in the same boat as you...love my K20D still, but at times, the noise in shadows doing nightscapes or low-key studio work is really annoying. I'm sure the K-5's sensor's dynamic range will help a lot as well the faster AF for portraits.

What bugs me is when Pentax changes the form factor though...I want to stick in another focusing screen and like my RRS plate...both would be new w/ a new form factor, so that has me holding off until the next version which will hopefully have a 24MP sensor (but with a bit more noise than the K-5), but that means yet another year w/ older "film" (and yes, you can live with it, but you always want the newest kind of film when you know it's much better )
On the mechanical hardware - the camera plate for my K100 (from Acratech) fits absolutely perfectly on my K20. The K20 L bracket may be a bit long for the K5, but would need to see. I feel like its a 80/20 decision - 80% to just keep going with the K20. I don't know that I really need any more resolution. I really do not need high ISO since I rarely go above 200.

Do I need it - no not really - and that is the real rub. Do I want it, not really, until I see shots with noise where there should be no noise at ISO 100, so really its the dynamic range of the sensor. I probably need to do a lot more reading on the new Sony bodies with the sensor and see what they actually provide. To some extent its pondering if Pentax will actually go to the Sony 28MP sensor, more resolution, with more noise, and then I might be stuck not being able to get the K5 with a warranty. So if they drop the K5 sensor in the Kr replacement, that currently is without a wired shutter release and 2 second mirror up (the inability to use both at the same time) - I am back to the situation I was in with the K100 - which the K20 solved perfectly. So the worst case is the K3 might be a tad worse and I would be looking at 2 product cycles.

Well, I have at least a couple of months to ponder the situation.

I went over to the Scottsdale Air Fair this afternoon and was able to score some reasonably good keepers....



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Last edited by interested_observer; 11-06-2011 at 08:20 PM.
11-06-2011, 10:16 PM   #5
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Those are both very nice.
11-07-2011, 09:32 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
On the mechanical hardware - the camera plate for my K100 (from Acratech) fits absolutely perfectly on my K20. The K20 L bracket may be a bit long for the K5, but would need to see. I feel like its a 80/20 decision - 80% to ju
FYI, the RRS plates are a huge step above the Acratech ones. They grab the edge of the bottom of the camera so it's impossible to twist the plate. I have another plate that is easy to swivel while it's attached and it's terrible...
11-07-2011, 10:25 PM   #7
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You just answered yourself when you said, 'Do I need it? No, not really.'
If that's the case, wait a few months, and at least see what comes out as the K3.
11-09-2011, 11:20 AM   #8
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Maybe you should see below and decide - the K5 sensor will kick ass

This pic was taken with the N D7000 (same sensor) and jpeg (jpeg generally offering lower DR) - besides a contrast tweak and slight sharpening sooc.



11-09-2011, 07:13 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
and was pretty good a predicting that there was nothing new with the K7 that I could not live without.
Based on what you said there, I would say you should just invest in lenses. You can probably live without the high ISO improvements of the K-5 just like I do

More importantly, your two plane shots are both underexposed - if that's the case for most of your shots, you're always going to feel like you're missing something in the area of noise. dylan's image is an example of a properly exposed scene - a K10D could have taken that image just as well.

QuoteOriginally posted by dylansalt Quote
This pic was taken with the N D7000 (same sensor)
It's not the same sensor. Check dxomark specs - they're different.
11-10-2011, 01:21 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Based on what you said there, I would say you should just invest in lenses. You can probably live without the high ISO improvements of the K-5 just like I do

More importantly, your two plane shots are both underexposed - if that's the case for most of your shots, you're always going to feel like you're missing something in the area of noise. dylan's image is an example of a properly exposed scene - a K10D could have taken that image just as well.



It's not the same sensor. Check dxomark specs - they're different.
Not to sound inflammatory - the K10D has no where near the dynamic range of the new sensor - it's not just about the high Iso

In the above pic many areas would have blown out using earlier sensors.

I have had a K10D for over 6 years and yes I have had quite a few A3 calender shots published from it but I do find the the Sony cmos in a different league.

They are the same sensor but Pentax engineers tweaking to their tastes just as Nikon has done

The difference in final output between the two are at most, minute
11-10-2011, 11:31 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by dylansalt Quote
Not to sound inflammatory - the K10D has no where near the dynamic range of the new sensor - it's not just about the high Iso

In the above pic many areas would have blown out using earlier sensors.
I don't disagree with the fact that the K-5 has better DR than the K10D, but at the size you posted, I don't see anything that couldn't be done with a P&S. For example:



My point is that I'm not sure your shot required the full DR of your K-5.

QuoteOriginally posted by dylansalt Quote
They are the same sensor but Pentax engineers tweaking to their tastes just as Nikon has done
According to dxomark, they have small differences in each of these areas: resolution, number of megapixels, physical sensor area, pixel pitch, even crop ratio. They are not the same - you can say they are based on the same design and technology, or that they are different versions of the same design, but saying they are the same is just playing loose with words.

QuoteOriginally posted by dylansalt Quote
The difference in final output between the two are at most, minute
It doesn't matter even if there would be no difference in output. Just because two black boxes produce the same output given the same input, doesn't make them "the same" - they have the same behavior, yes, but you cannot draw the conclusion that they are the same.
11-10-2011, 01:34 PM   #12
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Take the K-5 with you on that trip!
11-11-2011, 05:10 PM   #13
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@ interested Observer... Depending on your current lens line-up, if you've already saved the money then pull the trigger....

However... Your photographs may benefit more from a couple of shiny Ltd primes... I don't know what you're 'bolting on' to that K20?!

I shoot K-x... If I could afford a K5 I'd have one... I'd also be majorly (MAJORLY) tempted if someone offered to swap my K-x for their K20...
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