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06-25-2008, 08:35 PM   #1
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20D or 200D

Hi, I'm new here, but have been lurking reading all the posts with interest. I'm contemplating the purchase of either the 20D or 200D, to be used mainly for nature photography, from macro to birds and everything in between. I'm unable to quite decide, either the 200D with perhaps an extra lens or two, or the 20D with one lens for the time being. Money is an issue for a retired person! I'd be very interested in any opinions, with respect to suitability and image quality from both, PhotoReview gave the 200D a 9, and the 20D an 8, citing a yellow-brown cast to many test shots from the latter. By the way, I have in the cupboard with my Spotmatic, a mint 50mm SMC Takumar macro lens that I'd love to use again, used it for years on my Minolta SLRs with an adaptor. Thanks!

06-25-2008, 08:48 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by redcap Quote
Hi, I'm new here, but have been lurking reading all the posts with interest. I'm contemplating the purchase of either the 20D or 200D, to be used mainly for nature photography, from macro to birds and everything in between. I'm unable to quite decide, either the 200D with perhaps an extra lens or two, or the 20D with one lens for the time being. Money is an issue for a retired person! I'd be very interested in any opinions, with respect to suitability and image quality from both, PhotoReview gave the 200D a 9, and the 20D an 8, citing a yellow-brown cast to many test shots from the latter. By the way, I have in the cupboard with my Spotmatic, a mint 50mm SMC Takumar macro lens that I'd love to use again, used it for years on my Minolta SLRs with an adaptor. Thanks!
Hei,

If you a newbie to try DSLR, Pantex K10d price is reasonable now.
K200d + kits could give you reasonable IQ. But functional fewer than K10d. I saw K200d auto WB which seemed better than K10d. But please see other experience guys opinions.
Summary on K200d compare to K10d IMO:
- Seemed quicker AF (than K10d and K100d super)
- improve white balance (WB), also WB can user adjustable
- improve Shake Reduction (I hand shake; usable up to 1/30s for me)
- improve 18-55 Kit lens "II"
- with D-range option
- low price compare to K20d
- can take raw + jpeg (NB: I don't raw!)

Otherhand:
- K100d super ISO performance seemed better than K200d but the pixel is lower (do you pixel peeper or large printing?)
- K200d ISO 400 is fully userable in almost all conditions (to me).
- K20d can have fine adjust settings for different lenses (particular good for using third party lenses. The fine adjustment can fit different lenses usage if you care/mind the IQ very seriously)
- K200d used Li AA battery. If you use rechareable AA, the weight of the body of K200d only 50g to 70g lesser than k20d.
- certain news said Pentax could release new DSLRs second half of this year (K200d super? etc) if you could wait for half year.

Last edited by ckanthon; 06-26-2008 at 12:38 AM. Reason: adding info. add info..
06-25-2008, 09:22 PM   #3
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Thanks for that ckanthon, appreciate your thoughts.
06-26-2008, 12:52 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by redcap Quote
Hi, I'm new here, but have been lurking reading all the posts with interest. I'm contemplating the purchase of either the 20D or 200D, to be used mainly for nature photography, from macro to birds and everything in between. I'm unable to quite decide, either the 200D with perhaps an extra lens or two, or the 20D with one lens for the time being. Money is an issue for a retired person! I'd be very interested in any opinions, with respect to suitability and image quality from both, PhotoReview gave the 200D a 9, and the 20D an 8, citing a yellow-brown cast to many test shots from the latter. By the way, I have in the cupboard with my Spotmatic, a mint 50mm SMC Takumar macro lens that I'd love to use again, used it for years on my Minolta SLRs with an adaptor. Thanks!
Warning - Long read!

I've been shooting with a K200D since March. Today, I got my K20D in and started playing around with it a little. Here are some observations on differences.
This list is probably not all-inclusive.
  • Controls - The K20D has several more options to control camera settings on the body compared to the K200D. This may or may not matter to you. For instance, with the K20D, you have these options to control - Focal point mode (auto, select, center point), Metering mode (spot, center, matrix), focus mode (AF-C, AF-S, Manual), Bracketing.

    In addition to these, you also have an additional wheel on the front-right of the camera that can be set to do various things. For instance, my favorite shooting mode is Av. With the K20D, I can set the front wheel to ISO and the rear wheel to aperature. With the K200D, I was limited to Aperature with rear wheel and had to adjust ISO via the Fn menu (or leave it at auto, which I don't like normally).
  • Sealing - K20D has better sealing, though by how much I"m not sure.
  • Flash Control - The K20D has a bit more flash options like Trailing curtain sync. The pop-up flash also servers as an autofocus assist, something the K200D doesn't do (which is incorrect! K200D flash will also AF assist).
  • Live View - It's not the best in the world, but the K200D doesn't have it at all. So far, I've experimented with it in several situations and it's not too bad. I can already tell it will allow me to more comfortably get some shots - crawling or above head, for example. Live view also enables magnification and manual focus, which is neat when doing macro.
  • Viewfinder - It's brighter than the K200Ds. I really like the difference, and I wasn't actually expecting it to be this different.
  • Replaceable focus screens - I'm considering getting a Katz Eye, but we'll see.
  • Lithium battery - Higher voltage battery which might be translating into slightly faster autofocus -- I still haven't tested this in any scientific way, but the little 16-45 I snapped on today seemd to be focusing rather quickly.

    A downside of this - charging the lithium. I can already tell I'm going to buy another battery for this thing, because it takes about 3 hours to charge. I miss the K200D's ability to just switch batteries quickly and I hate waiting for batteries to charge, as I like to experiment around the house with the camera.
  • Lack of the beginner modes of the K200D. Also, some different modes I think, though I haven't really explored these fully.
  • A larger continuous shooting buffer.
  • High ISO capability.
  • Higher resolution, but pretty much a moot point in many circumstances.

I'm sure there are more, but these are my initial findings when messing around with the camera and briefly skimming the manual. Already I'm loving the camera, if just for the second e-dial.

For instance, in Av, I can set up the dials (Rear / Front) to do the following:

1) nothing / AV
2) Exposure Comp / AV (and reversed)
3) ISO / AV (and reversed)

Which I think is very nice, as many times I caught myself switching ISO in the K200D's menus (which is actually fast, but required). It's also nice to be able to dial in an Exposure comp, though the K20D has an external button for that.

-----------------------

If you're looking soley for IQ or general photography, both cameras are great. I was completely satisfied with the quality of the shots I was getting with the K200D.

I bought the K20D mostly because of the control options, not really because of any technical superiorities. I really don't care *too* much about the resolution, I rarely use continuous shooting, etc..but the control options and (pleaseantly surprisingly) the brighter viewfinder make me feel like it was money well-spent.


So far just a couple of minor complaints with the K20D:

1) While I'm sure it's a better sealing method, I'm not a fan of the latch-opened doors of the K20D -- Opening the SD card slot or battery slot requires you to twist a little lever/knob, unlike the K200's slide-latch doors. This means two-handed operation instead of a single thumb in the K200D's case. A small complaint to me, but one I have to mention.

2) Banding in very dark areas at ISO 3200 - Colored areas in the shots still okay, but very dark areas show banding. So far only a few ISO3200 shots tested, but it was fairly noticeable. Noise Ninja was able to clean it up some, but still remained. Granted, these were extremely dark conditions.

3) I don't seem to be able to actually disable slow shutter noise reduction in the K20D -- I get the option of "auto" or "on". According to the manual, the camera evaluates "shutter speed, sensitivity, internal teperature" and decides on the noise reduction -- I'm thinking this might tie into the use of the CMOS sensor. Oh well.

-------------------------------

If I was budget constrained and had to choose between a K200D and nice lens or a K20D and basic lens, I would definitely get the K200D and nice lens. There is a definite IQ improvement over the kit glass or some of the cheaper lenses, and ultimately I'd rather live with a very high quality photo and not have the K20D niceities than take "pretty good" photos because I have a lower-IQ lens.


Last edited by cputeq; 06-26-2008 at 07:53 AM.
06-26-2008, 02:17 AM   #5
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Thank Cputeq for the details,

Completely I agreed this claims:

"The pop-up flash also servers as an autofocus assist, something the K200D doesn't..."

The AF assist lamp of K200d also showup if it is popped but usually the AF not suceeded I remember!!

Last edited by ckanthon; 06-26-2008 at 03:38 AM.
06-26-2008, 07:52 AM   #6
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Well I'll be darned -- My AF assist had never fired on the K200D until about 30 seconds ago when I intentionally tested it I had to go into almost a completely dark room and test about 10 focal points before it fired once!

I stand corrected
06-26-2008, 09:46 AM   #7
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Yeah Yeah.

You know. In HK the pronunciation of "Pentax" is very very similar (or even exact) to the words "Lumpy Duck".. That is the way they call this brand of cammera!! (as Slow as a lumpy walking duck,....., low light AF performance,... under exposure...)

So enjoy !!
06-26-2008, 10:56 AM   #8
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You've just given me a good nickname for my K10D -- Lumpy Duck!

By the way, I think my Lumpy Duck is the greatest!!!

06-26-2008, 04:23 PM   #9
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Many thanks cputeq, you've given me plenty to think about. This is a great forum with helpful members, the best I've been involved with.
06-26-2008, 04:47 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by cputeq Quote
Well I'll be darned -- My AF assist had never fired on the K200D until about 30 seconds ago when I intentionally tested it I had to go into almost a completely dark room and test about 10 focal points before it fired once!

I stand corrected
Yeah. My K200D is completely unable to focus in a completely dark room even with the built-in flash popped-up . It just won't take the shot, no matter how many times I tried. Perhaps it would if I set it to manual focus.

This is somewhat disappointing since my tiny Nikon L1 digicam with its tiny built-in flash and AF-only will take the shot, and it's not blurry .

However, when I attach the cheap Digital concepts 952 AF/PEN PTTL flash to the K200D, it does take the shot.
06-26-2008, 04:51 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by madbrain Quote
Yeah. My K200D is completely unable to focus in a completely dark room even with the built-in flash popped-up . It just won't take the shot, no matter how many times I tried. Perhaps it would if I set it to manual focus.
If you want it to take the shot even if the camera isn't sure it is in focus, you can change the setting in one of the menus to allow that.
06-26-2008, 05:42 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by madbrain Quote
.....
However, when I attach the cheap Digital concepts 952 AF/PEN PTTL flash to the K200D, it does take the shot.
Great suggestion to make the lumpy duck walk! I will try such solution

Last edited by ckanthon; 06-26-2008 at 06:01 PM.
06-26-2008, 07:35 PM   #13
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The lack of spot metering points me to the K20D, very important in close up small wildflower work.
06-26-2008, 08:33 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by redcap Quote
The lack of spot metering points me to the K20D, very important in close up small wildflower work.
Hmm? K200D has spot metering also Check out page 98 of the manual (which you can download from Pentaxslr.com)
06-26-2008, 08:52 PM   #15
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[QUOTE=cputeq;277499]Warning - Long read!

I've been shooting with a K200D since March. Today, I got my K20D in and started playing around with it a little. Here are some observations on differences.
This list is probably not all-inclusive.

Hi, can you tell me what raw burst speed you get and maximum number of frames? I have seen conflicting figures on other forums; thanks.
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