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09-11-2014, 10:08 AM   #1
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Purchase dilemma

I currently have a K-7, K-01, K-10D and Panasonic G3. I probably don't need another camera but the prices for the K-5iis and the K-3 are so tempting right now. I've read through multiple reviews and posts here and on other forums but still going back and forth whether or not I should or shouldn't buy. Then the Panasonic FZ1000 appears and I've now added that to the mix because I like the idea that I wouldn't have to carry around multiple lenses.
However, I would like to wait until the FZ is at a better price point. I want to be able to do low light photography indoors as well as outdoors. The K-01 meets this need but sometimes it's slow to focus depending on the lens. I also do nature and macro photography. I know that Photokina is just around the corner but it doesn't seem that there is much on the horizon for Pentax unless they are going to announce some major surprise. Would just appreciate some input. I was considering the BH K-3 package adding the flash or the Adorama K-5iis package that comes with the 2 battery grips.
Thanks in advance.

09-11-2014, 10:13 AM   #2
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For low light I'd go for the K-5 IIs, just because the K-3's added resolution essentially cancels itself out at higher ISOs. On the other hand, the K-3 is more technologically advanced, and I wouldn't ignore all the other advantages that it holds over the K-5.

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09-11-2014, 10:16 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
For low light I'd go for the K-5 IIs, just because the K-3's added resolution essentially cancels itself out at higher ISOs. On the other hand, the K-3 is more technologically advanced, and I wouldn't ignore all the other advantages that it holds over the K-5.
That's what is confusing about this: K-5iis low light advantage, K-3 more bells and whistles. Other advantage with K-5, of course, is the price.
09-11-2014, 10:27 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
For low light I'd go for the K-5 IIs, just because the K-3's added resolution essentially cancels itself out at higher ISOs.
Would you mind explaining in a little more detail what makes the K-5 IIs better for low light?

09-11-2014, 11:17 AM   #5
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One thing I want to be able to do is get better photos of my birds indoors....more detail, etc. My K-7 is not the best in low light, of course, and flash is a "no-no" for most of my birds. The K-01 is unpredictable and AF can be slow. With MF I'm too slow to capture what I want with my birds' fast movements.
09-11-2014, 12:00 PM   #6
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The K5 series will be able to do this - you're going to want shutter speed at 1/350 or higher probably. Good ambient light of course, since the flash can spook the birds. I'd look at the DA35mm f2.4 very strongly for this. The camera will give plenty of cropping ability and shoots really well into ISO 6400.
Another thing to look at are LED panels instead of flash - they're primarily for video, but you just want increased ambient light - and this is what those do.

My parents rehabilitate cockatiels and other birds. It's a helluva lot of work.
09-11-2014, 01:04 PM   #7
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My K-3 auto focuses accurately at midnight with no moon. Of course one needs a tripod and remote shutter release. In evening light, I have shot up to ISO 3200 with good results. I have no history with the K-5 models.
09-11-2014, 01:06 PM   #8
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I'm happy with my jump from the K7 to the K5ii.

09-11-2014, 02:21 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
The K5 series will be able to do this - you're going to want shutter speed at 1/350 or higher probably. Good ambient light of course, since the flash can spook the birds. I'd look at the DA35mm f2.4 very strongly for this. The camera will give plenty of cropping ability and shoots really well into ISO 6400.
Another thing to look at are LED panels instead of flash - they're primarily for video, but you just want increased ambient light - and this is what those do.

My parents rehabilitate cockatiels and other birds. It's a helluva lot of work.
Do have the 35mm f2.4 and use that frequently for photos of my birds.
The problem w/ panels is that sometimes I just want to grab my camera and take a few quick photos and not set things up. With the panels have to get those set up first and, although some of my birds will probably be curious and interested in them, others will be scared.

Good for your parents with the rehabs. Definitely a lot of work but it's rewarding.

---------- Post added 09-11-14 at 02:33 PM ----------

Thanks for the replies. Having the K-01 I like the focus peaking function and that's not something that the K-5iis offers, correct?
Does anyone know when the BH and Adorama deals will expire?
09-11-2014, 07:42 PM   #10
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If I didn't already have a K-5II, I would get a K-5IIs. The K-3 is nice, but I don't like some of the changes they made to the body. I like having the metering modes on a switch, and I don't need or want a movie button. The new screen is nice, but it's not worth the extra money. As for 24 Mp? Bigger file sizes and worse lower light performance cancel out the benefits. K-5IIs is the sweet spot -- I'd rather have that than my K-5II, but I don't covet a K-3.
09-12-2014, 07:07 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by iamwhoiam Quote
The problem w/ panels is that sometimes I just want to grab my camera and take a few quick photos and not set things up. With the panels have to get those set up first and, although some of my birds will probably be curious and interested in them, others will be scared.
http://www.amazon.com/NEEWER%C2%AE-Dimmable-Digital-Camcorder-Panasonic/dp/B...ords=led+panel

Look for one like this. I find it very useful for scale model pictures - it doesn't burn the subject like a flash, or create harsh shadows. Plus, it's light and portable and a diffused point source which is good for isolating subjects.
09-12-2014, 09:11 AM   #12
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K5-iis advantage would be price and high ISO capabilities BUT isn't the K-3's AF faster overall even in low light/high ISO? I went back and looked at several comparison photos between the two at high ISOs and there is an obvious difference re: noise but then I looked at a few sets of K-3 photos taken at high ISOs and they look great and no post processing applied. This is my dilemma.

TER-OR...Thanks I will take a look at that panel.
09-12-2014, 08:52 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by iamwhoiam Quote
I currently have a K-7, K-01, K-10D and Panasonic G3. I probably don't need another camera but the prices for the K-5iis and the K-3 are so tempting right now.
I'm wondering whether a fast lens (with or without K-5iis) would be more bang for buck than a K-3? You said you have a DA 35 f2.4. Maybe something even faster, like a Sigma 18-35 f1.8, or one of the various fast 50s (or DA*55) or FA 77, depending what the most useful focal length is?
09-13-2014, 03:11 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by iamwhoiam Quote
K5-iis advantage would be price and high ISO capabilities BUT isn't the K-3's AF faster overall even in low light/high ISO? I went back and looked at several comparison photos between the two at high ISOs and there is an obvious difference re: noise but then I looked at a few sets of K-3 photos taken at high ISOs and they look great and no post processing applied. This is my dilemma.

TER-OR...Thanks I will take a look at that panel.
I think K5 II and K3 are equivalent when it comes to focus speed and ability to focus in the dark. K3 is able to track better and has smaller auto focus points (and more of them), which can help avoid auto focus confusion, where camera decides to focus on somebody's shirt instead of their face.

The K3 does fine at high iso, it is just that you probably wouldn't see a big difference between its images and those of a K5 IIs at same size viewing distance. The increased resolution of 24 versus 16 megapixels is only really useful at lower isos.

I'm not trying to convince you to get a K5 II over a K3. Things I like best about the K3 are its speed of operation, focus peaking (with better live view implementation), -- overall it just feels like a more refined K5/K5 II.
09-13-2014, 08:28 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by iamwhoiam Quote
I've read through multiple reviews and posts here and on other forums but still going back and forth whether or not I should or shouldn't buy.
If I were you (and I'm not...lol) I'd wait. Pentax recently reduced the price on the K3 and that usually means that they're trying to dump stock because there's something better coming.
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