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11-07-2012, 12:26 AM   #1
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From a K-7...K-30 or K-5II?

So I'm looking to upgrade from my K-7, I mostly do indoor shots, mostly of friends and such, and the things that have bugged me about the K-7 are crap high ISO noise and slow focus.

Currently I can get the K-30 for basically half the price of a K-5II ($680 vs $1160, however, the K-5ii's price places it above the tax + duty threshold so + 14% or so) I'm not really interested in the S, as I don't do much large print photography, and because I don't shoot in a controlled environment I do not ever want to deal with moire.

This would also allow me to pick up a K-01 for video use and a cheap lens for that as well...if I go for a K-30...but I'm really interested in the K-5II's auto focus in low light vs the K-30...I haven't seen a comparison of that yet.

11-07-2012, 12:31 AM   #2
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See our K-5 II review for details on how the K-5 II's autofocus fares. It sure does work in low light, but do you?

In any case, I would recommend getting the K-5 classic if you can. It's priced close to the K-30 and it takes better stills.

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11-07-2012, 04:27 AM   #3
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Keep k7. So you will save $1000, and take making a good photo in bad conditions with k7 as a challenge. If you can`t, then also k5 will not help.
11-07-2012, 04:38 AM   #4
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Given the alleged improvements in AF performance, what I think is likely to happen is that you will push your new camera further and further until you hit its performance limits. Then you will be pretty much back to square one - I have this and that motif in mind, but my camera cannot do it.

I suggest getting K-5 (regular) and a properly shimmed focusing screen with manual focusing aids. This will make your camera somewhat more futureproof as you would be able to manually focus in any light as long as you can see it in the viewfinder. The magnifying eye-piece is also a recommended accessory. The only downside of this approach is if you have really weak eyesight, such as myself and can no longer focus manually. Then K-30 seems to be a better option as it offers focus peaking which none of K-5 varieties has. I can't say anything about K-01 as I decided to steer away from it.

11-07-2012, 06:27 AM   #5
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I recently made the decision to upgrade to the K-5 classic from a K-7. While I loved my K-7, the higher ISO is fantastic on the K-5. Unless you need the lower light focus capabilities of the K-5II, then get a K-5 classic.
11-07-2012, 06:30 AM   #6
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Since its the glass these days that give you your quality I would go with the cheaper K30 and some good glass to get the most from it. Once you have the glass you have it !
11-07-2012, 07:11 AM   #7
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I was in the same situation with my K-7 and frustration with ISO noise and poor autofocus issues. I decided to go with the K5II over the K30 because of the low light auto focus capability. This was important to me because I do a fair amount of low light shooting. So far I have not been disappointed with the K5II auofocus ability. A couple of other benefits are the LCD and 14 vs 12 bit colour depth. I haven't had a chance to do a comprehensive comparison between the K7 (12 bit) and K5II but first impressions are good. Given the amount I was going to get for the K7, I decided to keep it as a second body. Under good lighting conditions, it does perform quite well. I would also use the K7 in more "camera riskier" outoor conditions such as canoeing, wet or cold weather etc.
11-07-2012, 07:49 AM   #8
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K-30 if you want focus peaking and better video, K-5II is you want better stills. K-5 if you want a K-5II but don't want to spend that much on account of low light AF.

11-07-2012, 07:53 AM   #9
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I would go with K-01, since you are shooting mostly indoor. It is $350 at the moment (don't know if it is still available at that price though). You are getting a sensor equivalent of K-5 for about 1/3 of the price.

However, I do agree with the comment to stick with K-7 too. It is a great camera, and with a bit of creativity, you can take fine photos indoors despite its rather poor low ISO capability. And, with plenty of light, K-7 can take just as good photos as K-5 do.
11-07-2012, 09:43 PM   #10
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K-7 vs K-5 really depends on how you use your K-7. Do you find yourself shooing indoors often? Do you find yourself doing long exposures often? Does it bother you that you cannot turn off Dark Frame subtraction in exposures over 30 seconds?

With indoor and long exposure shots noise creeps in, even at low iso levels. Thats what I always hated about my K-7. Very noisy! Otherwise it was fantastic. That being said, those kinds of pictures probably only made up 15% of all the shots I took with the camera, so that did not bother me that much for years. I also hated DFS. So very much. It really limits your night photography options (especially with star trails). Either do one super long exposure and call it a night or limit yourself to series of 30 second exposures and be forced to use some other means of illuminating objects.

Anyways, just recently bought a K-5 ($725ish) new on ebay from BuyDig. Great camera. It has everything that I love about my K-7, plus improved AF, MUCH BETTER ISO and ability to turn off DFS. Nothing more I could ask for. I sold my K-7 and the total transition cost me $325. Well worth it in my opinion
11-07-2012, 11:03 PM   #11
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Choose a camera with focus peaking, buy a Samyang 35mm f/1.4, brilliant even at 1.4, smooth Ziess like manual focus and it should perform smashingly.
11-07-2012, 11:57 PM   #12
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The high iso noise really bothers me, because I shoot in lowish light conditions, 90% of my camera use is indoors or low light with people, like events, gatherings with family and friends, nothing professional though, but noise really hinders the pictures sometimes, I took a picture at a restaurant, even in manual mode, and with a flash, I still was at ISO1600 to get a decent exposure, but noise was crazy.

Focusing is also an issue having people pose or at events when people aren't standing still it's very annoying.

I don't need long exposures or video, but I need fast focus in low light conditions and low noise at ISO3200+
11-08-2012, 12:20 AM   #13
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What lens were you using at the time?
11-08-2012, 01:05 AM   #14
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We have a K7 bought in 2009, a K5 bought in July 2011, and a K5IIs we got last week. The s just smashes the other 2 in any light from about 5ev(estimate from our exposures) down and is much less fussy about lens micro focus set up. For example, so far the s has needed no adjustment for any of our lenses where the classic has needed most of them adjusted before serious use. Once set up the classic keeps the settings, though. See my profile for the lenses we use. Another plug for manual focus: we came from Leica rangefinders(D) and MF Pentax film(K) cameras and use Katzeye screens with optibrite treatment and the Pentax .2 mag finder eyepiece. David is left eye dominant so the extra distance the mag eyepiece gives from the back of the camera helps keep him from hitting the LV and AF buttons with his nose( the fun of being a lefty) and the finder is also roughly the same size as FF and makes a killer combo. The s model is really nice this way. Ymmv,

D&K
11-09-2012, 07:04 PM   #15
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I think the K30 does the same video as the K01. The K5 and K5ii do not
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