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12-23-2014, 10:32 AM   #1
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upgrading from .... *ist DS

Hi,

my beloved DS is becoming old (10 years). I have to clean the wheel on a regular basis to have it working. and I just badly scratched my viefinder while cleaning this !*# wheel. I may change the viewfinder glass (50 shipped from pentax service), but I think it is time to upgrade the body.

I have today:
- 18-50 (the first one)
- 50-200 (the first one)
- FA50
- a M42 mamyia sekor 135/2.8 that I rarely use
- non ttl flash (sunpack 383) + remote trigger (cactus)
- a viewfinder magnifier(nikon DK16) to help manual focus

I use the FA50 as much as I can, falling back to the others when I cannot move. I use mainly the Av mode. I shoot raw since the *ist DS jpeg is far from perfect. I shoot my kids, pet, familly, kids on stage (music), landscapes, some macro, animals in zoo, buddies sking, buddies riding mountain bike. I print less and less often, but sometimes I can go BIG. I have a 50x70cm print in my living room (thanks to qimage software, I managed to get a good result from the 6Mpix of the DS)

My geek's heart screams for a K3.

My brain says: with the same budget, I would shot better pics with a K-50 + a good standard zoom (pentax 17-70 , tamron 17-50, sigma 17-70...) when I cannot reach the right distance to use the FA50.

My passion says: maybe you can afford the K3 + tamron 17-50 (since this glass is <300 and the others above 400)...

So guys, you see my dilemna. some advices?

12-23-2014, 10:53 AM   #2
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Go for the K-3...it will likely last you just as long as the DS did!

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12-23-2014, 11:15 AM   #3
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The k50 would be such a massive upgrade from your old camera, and you will be amazed by it. I think your original plan of saving some cash for a nice zoom would let your money go farthest. Shoot, I would even recommend a gently used k30 to stretch your budget even farther.

A k30/50 would also be lighter and more compact, in case that is important to you.

Last edited by Edgar_in_Indy; 12-23-2014 at 11:27 AM.
12-23-2014, 11:25 AM   #4
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You seem to hang onto gear so go for the k-3 it will serve you well for another 20 years.

Good glass is important too but at this point I think uou will gain the most from the K-3.

12-23-2014, 11:33 AM   #5
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I used the DS for years and years, until the crazy good deals on the K01 showed up last year. I bought one and was amazed at the leap in IQ, but I missed the DS quite a bit. I ended up finding a very good deal on the K3 (I realize the deals in Europe are generally not as good as what they are here) and I can foresee this being a 10 year camera. I'm not saying that I or you would not be happy with a K-50, but in my opinion, you can always save up more for better glass later. You are going to benefit from the better tech much sooner. I hear that there might be some new releases in Feb. though, so if you don't mind waiting, it might be in your favor with lower prices on whatever is being phased out.
12-23-2014, 02:19 PM - 1 Like   #6
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I can't believe people are saying that a K-3 + No new lenses will do more for his photography hobby than a K-50 + new glass. With the money saved on the K-50, he could buy a wide angle lens like the Sigma 10-20mm, or a shorter fast prime like the 30mm 1.4, or one of the fast standard zooms he was talking about. What's the big benefit he would get from the K-3 over the K-50 for almost twice the money? A tiny bit more resolution?

If you asked this question in the "lens" forum, you might've gotten different respones!
12-23-2014, 02:43 PM   #7
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It's a tough call. To some extent, it is a matter of durability. If you really do intend to hold on to the camera for many years and put on a lot of shutter actuations - the argument for the K-3 is pretty strong.

The Tamron 17-50 is cheaper than the others for good reason. It is less likely to hold up to heavy use, and it isn't as sharp as the Sigma equivalent. The Sigma 17-70 is pretty good too - if you really need that reach.

Overall, though, assuming less than 10,000 actuations a year (8-10 years) - go with the better glass and cheaper body. I'm with Edgar on that. You hardly ever hear of Pentax shutters failing.

Yes, the K-3 beats the K50 in almost all ways (unless size and weight is a huge priority), but coming from the earliest dSLRs - the difference between these models would be difficult to discern.
12-23-2014, 02:59 PM   #8
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The difference between the best resolution of an 18-55 is and FA 77 on a K10D is less than 200 lw/ph. The difference between a K10D and a K-3 is probably about 700 lw/ph. or about a 30% increase. SO lens 10% more resolution, new body 30% more resolution. Reduce your K-3 image 30 percent, and you have a much cleaner image, even though it's the same resolution. AT least that's my strictly throeretical conjecture.

I'd love to see some empirical evidence one way or the other.

I'd say, go with the latest, be prepared to use it fo another 5 years and fill in some lenses along the way.
Ideal would be the Tamron 17-50 and K-3. I agree.

There is some evidence that kit lenses benefit from the K-3 more than better lenses do, so it may give your older stuff new life.

If not getting you a K-3 would get you something awesome, I'd be all for it. I just don't see how saving $500 gets you very far in aquireing good lenses. Instead , make all your current lenses better. The best Pentax lenses are all around the price of a K-3, or more. A K-3 is by far the best choice, in terms of being an immediate upgrade to everything you own.

12-23-2014, 04:29 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edgar_in_Indy Quote
The k50 would be such a massive upgrade from your old camera, and you will be amazed by it. I think your original plan of saving some cash for a nice zoom would let your money go farthest. Shoot, I would even recommend a gently used k30 to stretch your budget even farther.

A k30/50 would also be lighter and more compact, in case that is important to you.
lighter maybe, but not more compact. Have m K30 and my K3 in front of me. The differences is... negligible.

I would buy the K3 + the tamron 17-50 f2.8. It is a nice lens.
12-23-2014, 05:23 PM   #10
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Go with the K-3. The low noise/high ISO performance on this camera is blowing me away. I took some photos this past weekend at an Aquarium which never seemed to come out right with my older K-m or point-and-shoots. The K-3 took clean, beautiful photos in very low light conditions and extracted detail which my older DSLRs can not. Look at the positive side and if you get the K-3 you at this rate you probably won't be looking at another camera until 2024. It will pay for itself a hundred times over between now and then.


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12-23-2014, 05:55 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Obin Robinson Quote
Go with the K-3. The low noise/high ISO performance on this camera is blowing me away. I took some photos this past weekend at an Aquarium which never seemed to come out right with my older K-m or point-and-shoots.
The K-3 is a great camera, but the high ISO performance between that and the K-30/50 is negligible. DxoMark rates the sensors basically the same, and the dpreview widget does not show a noise advantage for the K-3 vs the K-50 (at least to my eye). I just don't see where the OP benefits by spending twice as much on the K-3, when he really needs some more lenses.

Here are a couple galleries that I shot this past week of "The Nutcracker" performance that my girls were in. I was using my K-30, mostly with my Sigma 85mm 1.4 and 100-300mm f4, but I have a few from my 8-16mm and my 30mm 1.4. The shots were almost all shot at high ISO levels, between ISO 1000 and 3200 in order to keep my shutter speed up (1/500 and faster) to freeze the dancers in motion. My K-30 captured clean, detailed photos and the autofocus system worked like a champ. I doubt I would have gotten significantly better results with the K-3.

Gallery 1 (mostly with the 100-300mm f4):
TDR Nutcracker - Dress rehearsal #1

Gallery 2 (mostly with the 85mm 1.4):
Nutcracker Sunday Show

Again, nothing against the K-3, but I just don't think it's the best way to spend his money. It's like the K-50 might be 10x better than his current camera, and the K-3 might be 11x better. But he is sorely in need of some updated lenses.
12-23-2014, 06:01 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edgar_in_Indy Quote

Again, nothing against the K-3, but I just don't think it's the best way to spend his money. It's like the K-50 might be 10x better than his current camera, and the K-3 might be 11x better. But he is sorely in need of some updated lenses.


I'll buy that. A co-worker has the K-50 and he loves it. I have the K-3 and I love it. Either of them are light years ahead of the *ist DS.


obin
12-23-2014, 06:04 PM   #13
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I started out with an Olympus e-510 DSLR, and that camera blew me away with how good the image quality was compared to the point & shoots I'd been using. And my Pentax K-x destroyed the Olympus, particularly once you got over ISO 400. But the sensor in my K-30 makes my K-x look bad.

It's amazing how good DSLR's have gotten, and regardless of which way the OP goes, he's going to wonder why he waited so long to upgrade.

Here's an ISO 3200 shot from my K-30, and I daresay this is better than an ISO 800 shot from my old Olympus. The image was shot with the legendary Sigma 100-300mm f4, at 260mm and wide-open at f4. Click on the image for a larger version:


Last edited by Edgar_in_Indy; 12-23-2014 at 06:31 PM.
12-23-2014, 06:26 PM   #14
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I vote for cheaper camera + better glass. The lens makes the picture. The camera just records it.
12-23-2014, 07:32 PM   #15
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Even though I have the K-3 and quite like it, I vote K-50 plus some glass. Unlike improvements for AF and handling, I find the IQ difference between the K-3 and my trusty K-01 (I'm using it as a K-50 stand-in here) not that significant under most circumstances. When I look at the OP's list of glass, however, there are more obvious gaps for him to fill - a fast normal, for instance (the DA 35/2.4 won't break the bank either).
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