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10-07-2012, 08:50 PM   #1
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Please. Please. Please resell me on Pentax

Hey all, here's the deal...

I love my Pentax. So you would think this would make it easy. Just keep using it, right? Well, maybe it's not as easy as all that...

I'm thinking about getting into photography on a professional basis. Nothing terribly fancy, but starting with some Real Estate photography, perhaps helping other photogs in the area out from time to time for spot money here and there. Enough to help build up my camera gear, have money for our move, and other things like that... I'd still have my same software job and work from my home, just as I do now.

Anyway, here's my issue... Let's say I do end up shooting under these local people... Most of them (Ok, probably all of them) won't shoot Pentax. Sure, maybe it'll be like 60/40 Canon/Nikon, but if I were to switch to a brand today it'd probably be Nikon. I keep reading how fantastic every one of their lenses is, and I have to admit... I tend to agree that Nikon does have some fantastic glass. I always thought, of the two big guys, Nikon had the best bodies and Canon had the best glass, but I think Nikon has widened the gap on bodies and closed the gap on lenses.

So anyway, here's the dilemma... I'm currently only using one body, only have a few lenses, and a couple of them are pretty cheap. So really, I think I could offload the K20D and the 40 LTD and then otherwise my stuff is pretty cheap and could sell it pretty slowly. So switching wouldn't be incredibly hard BUT, I would miss the Pentax family. Perhaps I'd get a Q to keep my soul from going to the devil.

I guess it's tough being on this forum right now, and it seems like one time I come here it's like ok, good, Pentax it is. Then the next time I come back I question it. If there is a time for me to switch... It's now.

Anyway... It may all be a wash anyway, just because of what I need/desire from a company and the other options out there...

First of all, I wouldn't want to spend more than $1000 on a body, and I don't mind used, if well cared for, but if I'm spending that much, I expect it to be very new. Not like a 2 years ago model or anything. I live in MN so weather sealing is a must. Two dials is a must. So basically here's what I want/need...

-sub $1000 body, new/used is fine but if close to that, should be model within a years time
-Weather sealing
-2 dials
-Good high ISO handling - Even the K20D seems to handle it fairly well, but it is very frustrating not being able to go to the much higher ISOs like the K-5 can.
-Not a small body. The K20D has good size, K-5 just "feels right" as far as a body. K110D was a bit small feeling. I'm 6'8" so my hands have good size to them.
-FF is not now, nor will it be in the foreseeable future, an attractive thought to me

So... Can Nikon (or Canon) even offer this? Even if they can, can you help convince me that in my situation Pentax is still better?

10-07-2012, 09:03 PM   #2
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If you're not going to go full-frame, no reason whatsoever to switch -- Pentax has the best APS-C body and you won't find weather-sealing on anything in your price range. And if you did go full-frame, it certainly sounds out of your price range, although you can get a Canon 5d (first version) for about $600, but that is well beyond your only one year or so old rule. If you are serious about sub-$1000, forget it -- sell your 20D for a few hundred and get a K-5. If you haven't used a K-5, then you don't know what you are missing. Huge jump from K20D and fantastic dynamic range.
10-07-2012, 09:08 PM   #3
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IMHO if a 'pro' dismisses you on your gear regardless of the quality of your work, they're a jackass and probably not worth working with in the first place.

Rate photography on results, not methodology.
10-07-2012, 09:09 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
If you're not going to go full-frame, no reason whatsoever to switch -- Pentax has the best APS-C body and you won't find weather-sealing on anything in your price range. And if you did go full-frame, it certainly sounds out of your price range, although you can get a Canon 5d (first version) for about $600, but that is well beyond your only one year or so old rule. If you are serious about sub-$1000, forget it -- sell your 20D for a few hundred and get a K-5. If you haven't used a K-5, then you don't know what you are missing. Huge jump from K20D and fantastic dynamic range.
The most I've used a K-5 is in a store. So I was able to basically just feel it, and it felt really nice. Like how a camera should feel, you know? Not something I've ever really gotten from Canon. I just recently noticed the 7D, which is perhaps in the price range but again it comes down to lacking many of the newer things in the current bodies (Even the K-5, which came out not much later). Higher ISO, faster FPS (Not incredibly important) and other things, and yet that's at the same price or lower...

Does the D300S have weather sealing? Again, would be just as expensive as a K-5 and probably not even up to the K-7 in quality...

So Pentax truly does win the APS-C body war, but what about glass? Is that a big enough difference?

10-07-2012, 09:11 PM   #5
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A buddy of mine just picked up a used 5D and is using his Pentax Glass on it via an adapter. I am not on all the details on that but.. a 5D is 12mp.. and at FF i think that should be plenty... A good chance the people you will be shooting for will want you to shoot with a FF or CaNikon bodies.. but like vonBaloney said if you are going to another APS-C system then why leave? I totally agree.. get a used K-5 and stay pentax...

Here is something is a little something for you...
10-07-2012, 09:13 PM   #6
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I personally run Pentax because I do a lot of macro for personal reasons and work related. I am a field biologist/entomologist and work in a lot of humid and wet environments. The current production lenses, DA 35mm/2.8 LTD macro, D FA 50/2.8 macro and DA 100/2.8 WR macro are are very good. Canon has 1 lens that got my attention because it has the 5:1 capability. I used a Sigma 105/2.8 EX DG macro for 3 years and it was an excellent lens. However, I replaced it when the 100 WR was released. I also have the DA* 300/4 in my line up.

It really depends on what you want to do or need to do. I think you will find that most manufactures have things they excel at relative to others. For the stuff I do and in aps-c, I think Pentax is still the way to go for me.
10-07-2012, 09:14 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Buschmaster Quote
The most I've used a K-5 is in a store. So I was able to basically just feel it, and it felt really nice. Like how a camera should feel, you know? Not something I've ever really gotten from Canon. I just recently noticed the 7D, which is perhaps in the price range but again it comes down to lacking many of the newer things in the current bodies (Even the K-5, which came out not much later). Higher ISO, faster FPS (Not incredibly important) and other things, and yet that's at the same price or lower...

Does the D300S have weather sealing? Again, would be just as expensive as a K-5 and probably not even up to the K-7 in quality...

So Pentax truly does win the APS-C body war, but what about glass? Is that a big enough difference?
The only thing that would get me to switch to another APS-C body would be if I required the best autofocus available (definitely not Pentax) or pro support like if I needed to be able to replace my equipment at the drop of a hat no matter where I was. But for what you are talking about? K-5 all the way, or maybe a K-30 if you like those trade-offs.
10-07-2012, 09:17 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by EdwardConde Quote
A buddy of mine just picked up a used 5D and is using his Pentax Glass on it via an adapter. I am not on all the details on that but.. a 5D is 12mp.. and at FF i think that should be plenty...
I am thinking of doing that -- scratch the FF itch for $600 plus adapter and use my K-mount and m42 glass manual focusing (which is mostly what I do lately anyway). Sounds reasonable without going nuts while we see what shakes out over the next year or so...

10-07-2012, 09:23 PM   #9
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okay, say you do go through with the switch. Then what? Will the quality of your work improve? Will the quality of your gear show a definite increase in the quality of your photos?

TBH, I don't think its really worth upgrading at all. You've got a camera and some glass. For the kind of shooting that requires a lot of time spent on a tripod at near-infinity focus and small apertures, I honestly think that anything above what you've got right now might be overkill. If anything, you could probably save yourself a ton of money and just buy yourself a few flashes and a decent wide-angle and you should be set for Real Estate shoots. Maybe grab a nice tripod while you're at it too.

Say you do upgrade to the K-5, then what? Will the high-iso performance help you any, especially if you light the area really well? Will the expanded DR save you enough time over doing an HDR to warrant the purchase? IMO, the k20d is more than adequate in your situation.

If you do decide to expand to other types of shooting such as sports, events or on-location portraiture, I'd say go for whatever makes you happy. For what you're planning on shooting now though, the gear you've got now seems plenty fine.
10-07-2012, 09:25 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by EdwardConde Quote
A buddy of mine just picked up a used 5D and is using his Pentax Glass on it via an adapter. I am not on all the details on that but.. a 5D is 12mp.. and at FF i think that should be plenty... A good chance the people you will be shooting for will want you to shoot with a FF or CaNikon bodies.. but like vonBaloney said if you are going to another APS-C system then why leave? I totally agree.. get a used K-5 and stay pentax...

Here is something is a little something for you...
Pentax K-5
The 5D that was released in '05 and only goes to ISO 1600? I'm not sure that would be a step up considering what I like. Although, if I were to have a second body of a separate brand, the Canon 5D and a K mount adapter may be a great way to go! If it's a "secondary" body then it wouldn't need weather sealing really, either, since it would mostly be for shoots with other people and as a backup. FF may be nice for Real Estate photography as well, given what it could do for focal lengths. Suddenly a kit zoom (if compatible) might be a reasonable set for RE shoots!

Sweet video!

QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
I personally run Pentax because I do a lot of macro for personal reasons and work related. I am a field biologist/entomologist and work in a lot of humid and wet environments. The current production lenses, DA 35mm/2.8 LTD macro, D FA 50/2.8 macro and DA 100/2.8 WR macro are are very good. Canon has 1 lens that got my attention because it has the 5:1 capability. I used a Sigma 105/2.8 EX DG macro for 3 years and it was an excellent lens. However, I replaced it when the 100 WR was released. I also have the DA* 300/4 in my line up.

It really depends on what you want to do or need to do. I think you will find that most manufactures have things they excel at relative to others. For the stuff I do and in aps-c, I think Pentax is still the way to go for me.
Good stuff.

QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
The only thing that would get me to switch to another APS-C body would be if I required the best autofocus available (definitely not Pentax) or pro support like if I needed to be able to replace my equipment at the drop of a hat no matter where I was. But for what you are talking about? K-5 all the way, or maybe a K-30 if you like those trade-offs.
I wouldn't say I require the best AF available, though I do like the idea of 51 focus points! I am perhaps ruling out older bodies too easily, but I am too intrigued by ISO 51,000 of the K-5 II.
10-07-2012, 09:29 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by adpo Quote
okay, say you do go through with the switch. Then what? Will the quality of your work improve? Will the quality of your gear show a definite increase in the quality of your photos?

TBH, I don't think its really worth upgrading at all. You've got a camera and some glass. For the kind of shooting that requires a lot of time spent on a tripod at near-infinity focus and small apertures, I honestly think that anything above what you've got right now might be overkill. If anything, you could probably save yourself a ton of money and just buy yourself a few flashes and a decent wide-angle and you should be set for Real Estate shoots. Maybe grab a nice tripod while you're at it too.

Say you do upgrade to the K-5, then what? Will the high-iso performance help you any, especially if you light the area really well? Will the expanded DR save you enough time over doing an HDR to warrant the purchase? IMO, the k20d is more than adequate in your situation.

If you do decide to expand to other types of shooting such as sports, events or on-location portraiture, I'd say go for whatever makes you happy. For what you're planning on shooting now though, the gear you've got now seems plenty fine.
I wouldn't say it would improve, but it might allow me to get more jobs.

I think with my current situation here is how RE shoots would work...

-Keep the K20D
-Add a wide angle zoom.
-Pick up a nicer tripod

Then I would shoot HDR shots, bracketed to maybe 5 shots, and then I think I would get a better look than I might with a flash. I would probably try both options out around my own house and maybe another house or two before moving forward with it, though.
10-07-2012, 09:29 PM   #12
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Get a K-5. If anyone disses it, tell them the body is magnesium alloy, and you will hit them with it really hard.
10-07-2012, 09:31 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
Get a K-5. If anyone disses it, tell them the body is magnesium alloy, and you will hit them with it really hard.
When you put it like that... It makes me want to walk around with a K-5 all day, just for one I run into idiots
10-07-2012, 10:21 PM   #14
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If you are going pro, and need 135 FF digital, non-Pentax.
If you are going pro, and need MF digital, Pentax.
If you are staying APS-C, Pentax. Just get good lenses - with HSM/DC/SDM if AF speed worries you.

There are some folks here btw (Werticus?) who do real-estate photography, amongst other stuff. I think he has a K-5 and 645D.
10-08-2012, 01:30 AM   #15
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Well you don't have the cash to go anywhere where the grass is greener. So you might as well buy K-5 IIs and start working with that. You need a plan on wich lenses you can work with. And knowledge about your jobs to do and how to get that knowledge.
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