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03-11-2015, 05:32 AM   #1
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K-x vs K5 IIs or K3

I shot with both a K3 (which I sent back) & the K5 IIs (which I've kept), working in Capture One or Photoshop, I see no differences. I kept the K5 only due to having less NR options that I had to turn off... which seemed never to turn off in the K3 no matter what I did.

I have to say though, comparing similar shots from my K-x (from last soccer season) to the K5 IIs (present soccer season), I like the K-x better.

I don't have problems with AF, so thats not the issue. Play tons of video games, I know how to track with or without a reticle. So, thats not what I'm speaking about.

I'm frustrated cause I like the the pic quality of the K-x better. Anyone notice the same? And, can anyone explain that?

Note- I shoot everything in M or TAv.

---------- Post added 03-11-15 at 08:42 AM ----------

Additionally, I think another problem is that both the K3 & K5 IIs jump to the highest possible ISO (in broad daylight!!!) whereas the K-x will not.

Comparing similar shots, in broad daylight, from last season to the present, the K5 uses a much higher ISO. The K-x shot at 100 or 200 last season. K5 at 200 was severely underexposed. It wanted 800. In post I was able to bump up the exposure and save the pics but I didn't like the look of them. Never had problems like that with the K-x.

03-11-2015, 05:46 AM   #2
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Check how you have exposure compensation dialed in.
03-11-2015, 06:00 AM   #3
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Thanks for your reply. I've never touched exposure anywhere on any of my cameras. Just checked both the K-x & K5 IIs just to make sure, everything is at the default settings.

Just wanted to be clear to everyone as well. Not wanting a gripe session. Just was wondering if anyone else had that problem & whether they liked their K-x better.

I understand all cameras process (software) images differently. I just seem to like how the K-x processes vs. the others. I find that frustrating since I want more pixels... doesn't everyone?

Just want pic quality of a K-x and the crop ability of a K3.
03-11-2015, 06:04 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by MyTZuS Quote
Additionally, I think another problem is that both the K3 & K5 IIs jump to the highest possible ISO (in broad daylight!!!) whereas the K-x will not.
How are your auto-iso parameters set?

03-11-2015, 06:15 AM   #5
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Yeah, what you are saying sounds quite unbelievable. The K-5IIs is a better camera than the K-x in pretty much every way (the only advantages K-x has is AA adapter and being smaller overall).
Do you shoot jpeg or raw? Jpeg settings might explain this.
The K-5IIs has no AA filter, so it is sharper, and it has higher MP/resolution. And it also records more data per each pixel, so you can recover more and have more shades/tones. The 16MP sensor is also a newer generation and has better noise performance, less noise at higher ISO than previous cameras. The K-3 has no AA either, and has even higher MP, but some claim the 24MP results in more digital noise than the K-5IIs 16MP, due to higher pixel density/smaller photosites.
But! There is something to be said about character. Some people simply get along better with a certain camera. Lots of people here still swear on their K10D, with CCD sensor. They say it has the best colour. Is this true, is it because of different sensor type, is it just different processing, we will never know for certain, because a large part of appreciating art and photos is subjective. It could also have to do with expectations and camera handling, features and settings, lens used and other things. Too many variables. But on paper, the K-5IIs should blow the K-x out of the park. That being said, I've seen plenty of great photos taken with K-x and of course it is capable of producing good photos. A more expensive camera is not all that one needs to improve their photos
03-11-2015, 06:25 AM - 1 Like   #6
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I too, have decided to keep my K-x, even if I own both the K-3 and the K30. But the K3 just blows the K-x out of the water after image conversion and similar post-processing. Everything from sharpness to colors, the K3 just trumps the Kx.

But the K-x is still special, it's so small, it can be mistaken for a bridge camera! And the images it produces are simply wonderful. The K3 is just simply better.
03-11-2015, 06:34 AM   #7
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K-X has lower bit depth, and larger pixel size based on number of pixels across the APS-C chip.

I suspect your concern about "Noise Reduction" might relate to sharpness... this read may be a useful rationalization on softness

My question is.. are your complaint based on prints, or pixel peeping. I shot a K-r for 3 years before moving to a K5IIs and I'll say that I had no complaint on the K-r image quality, but I find the files from the K5IIs so much more usable (and I think the Noise handling and image quality is far superior on the K5IIs).

I've printed many files from both and find the K5IIs 16 Megapixel as a pixel density sweet spot is a truth.
03-11-2015, 06:38 AM   #8
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When I first started with the K5 after shooting with the Kx I got worse results. Especially in TAv. The K5 (and II, IIs, and K3) are more unforgiving than the Kx, but you can get results from them that will blow away the Kx after you learn it.

03-11-2015, 07:05 AM   #9
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See, I had a K-r and a K-5 and a K-3. And yes, the K-3 generates much better quality images than the K-r (and even the K-5). But I honestly didn't mind using any camera and I had no true preference when used for casual shooting. And aside from the lack of a front wheel, the K-r was just fine. And I loved how light it was, I could hold that thing for days. However on studio work or "paid" shoots or macro stuff, it was K-3/K-5 all the way.

I always found the K-3 to be less "forgiving" than the other two, I'm assuming it's also the case with the K-5iis. I fell like I have to be more careful with it in order to get "the shot", I blame the increased resolution, it makes my mistakes easier to spot

One major thing though is it looks like the OP is using the defaults settings on the camera and if I'm not mistaken the defaults settings are crap (on the K-5 and K-3 they were). JPEG only, boring color profile, auto WB, auto ISO 200-6400, most correction systems ON (highlights, shadows, lens...)

So I am guessing that when used as a P&S, the higher end cameras may not be optimum. Because as it was mentioned, the K5iis will blow the K-x out of the water, better AF, noise, resolution, sensor, burst rate, greater bit depth, faster max shutter, lower native ISO.

It may be a case of getting used to working with it and go through the manual and understand the whack of new options and settings found on the new higher end body. Because, in no way it is hard to turn NR OFF on the K-3
03-11-2015, 08:46 AM   #10
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I'm planning to buy K-3 next week, and I am proud k-x owner for more then 5 years.

I'm pretty sure if you use fully automatic setting shooting jpegs, you don't use highest potential or value of your new camera (but you paid for that).

K-x doesn't have TAv mode.

It is good little camera with solid features and great sensor but I expect to see much better pics more because I use it mainly for studio and landscape work, both with tripod and lowest iso (don't even care if quality above iso 800 is worse)

check others settings in your exif data... like aperture or shutter speed. If you k-x goes from iso 100-200 and k-5/k-3 to iso 6400 it's because you limited your iso up to 200 on your k-x, so that need to be done with new camera too.

even the best, newest full frame camera on iso 6400 with look worse if you compare it with k-x on iso 100 or 200.
03-11-2015, 09:09 AM   #11
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As former K-x user (stollen) and current K-5 IIs all I can say I've never had such behaviour with ISO on K-5 IIs . It works as expected.
I used to have my top ISO on K-x at 1600 although for most cases I avoided using anything more than 800. Can't compare it side by side now at the same settings but on the K-5IIs I've set the limit at 3200 just because I felt like limiting it somewhere - it defintately has much better ISO performance.

You say you've checked all your settings and they are fine - so I take it you know what you are doing.
Only thing that comes to mind - since you say you shoot M or TAv - compare what shutter speed and f-stops were you using on both picture sets. If you pushed your speed to be too fast or closed the lens too much - of course the camera will compensate with higher ISO to be able to get proper exposure.

If you like the K-x pictures better, that's fine - always trust your own eyes first. I like the K-5 IIs output better - for its better ISO performance, better sharpness because of no AA and few more mpix and better DR when you need to tweak them. But it is hard to tell them apart at low ISOs if you are looking at the pictures scaled down to a low resolution monitor.

I'm not sure what do people mean by one camera being more "forgiving" than other, especially if you are shooting M or TAv -there's not much left for the camera to decide for you... Well, if you have shaky hands I guess less MP = more forgiving camera. Other than that newer cameras have better white balance detection, better exposure detection , better/faster AF, better ISO performance usually - so they are naturally "more forgiving" than the older models as you'll have to compensate less for these.
03-11-2015, 09:43 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by MyTZuS Quote
Thanks for your reply. I've never touched exposure anywhere on any of my cameras. Just checked both the K-x & K5 IIs just to make sure, everything is at the default settings. Just wanted to be clear to everyone as well. Not wanting a gripe session. Just was wondering if anyone else had that problem & whether they liked their K-x better. I understand all cameras process (software) images differently. I just seem to like how the K-x processes vs. the others. I find that frustrating since I want more pixels... doesn't everyone? Just want pic quality of a K-x and the crop ability of a K3.
Are you shooting in RAW or jpeg? I used a k-x for several years and still see some of those old images and I'm amazed at the rich colors. k-x did/does a very nice job. But a properly developed k-3 image will completely blow it away. Remember there are lots of settings for jpeg in the k-3 and k-5IIs as well, so if you don't like the look they produce you can adjust the settings. And if you are shooting in RAW you should develop a new preset and not use the old settings from the k-x, they will not work well on the newer cameras.

The k-3 is a near pro level camera and you really do need to read the manual and learn to get the best out of it.
QuoteOriginally posted by MyTZuS Quote
Additionally, I think another problem is that both the K3 & K5 IIs jump to the highest possible ISO (in broad daylight!!!) whereas the K-x will not.
Sorry, but this is just you not understanding your cameras. The k-3 doesn't "jump" anywhere, it does what the settings you selected told it to. If you are using them in green mode or Tav mode then yes they will often select settings that are not the best.

As others have noted the k-x is a great little camera that is very forgiving. The k-5IIs and even more the k-3 require a better understanding of what the camera is doing.
QuoteOriginally posted by MyTZuS Quote
Comparing similar shots, in broad daylight, from last season to the present, the K5 uses a much higher ISO. The K-x shot at 100 or 200 last season.
I am confused, your major complaint is the camera selecting the wrong ISO but you put the camera in Auto ISO mode? Don't use Tav or Auto ISO. Just set the ISO to what it needs to be. Tav can be useful in some situations, but you get more control if you set it yourself. I have the rear control wheel set to control aperture or speed depending on mode, and the front control wheel controls ISO in all modes. I never let the camera control ISO.
03-11-2015, 10:03 AM   #13
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Can you provide images for us to review? Maybe Tripod, lens of choice, and static subject in even light. Take one photo with Kx and the other with the K-5ii?
03-11-2015, 11:52 AM   #14
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Some comparative sample photos would be great. But if you typically shoot in JPG, I think it all boils down to how you're exposing and what custom image presets you've dialed in.

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03-11-2015, 02:55 PM   #15
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Thank you everyone but I shoot raw, PEF. To another poster, you're correct.. I was using Tv mode on the K-x. WB & Image profile are not default, I did change them, just meant that I never changed the exposure settings on the K5 or K3, that is all default on the C tab. Also, last weeks shoot was all handheld when shooting with K-x it was on a monopod.

So the takeaways from all the posts for me here are that I'll go back to the monopod, use Tv, and see what happens.

Now I'm concerned about SR which I used on a monopod with the K-x but I've read here that one shouldn't use it when using a monopod with the K5 IIs.
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