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01-16-2016, 12:54 AM   #1
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Thinking about getting the K 50

Hi everyone! I'm a hobbiest who is starting to get some real knowledge of photography. I've noticed that B&H has had the K 50 for sale at a very decent price point for a while. Has anyone used it with the 18-55mm kit lens? What are your impressions? Out of curiosity how does it stack up against the Canon T5 with the kit lens? Just trying to make an informed purchase, thanks.

01-16-2016, 01:56 AM   #2
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The entry-level cameras from all the different manufacturers all fall into the category of "very good", IMO. The thing that makes the K-50 unique is its weather sealing. It also has a very large grip and should be more comfortable to hold, and it has a very capable sensor for still images, though its video mode isn't on par with what Canon offers.

If you want average image quality, the 18-55mm will certainly get the job done. You can opt for a better lens such as the Pentax/Sigma 17-70mm, or the Pentax 18-135mm, if your budget allows it.

This comparative review should give you an idea of what to expect. The K-30 and K-50 are virtually identical, except for their external design.

Canon T4i vs Nikon D5100 vs Pentax K-30 Review - Introduction | PentaxForums.com Reviews

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01-16-2016, 04:45 AM - 1 Like   #3
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I purchased the K-50 for my son from B&H and he loves it. It is so much better than the Canon T5 on so many levels including, weather resistant camera and kits lens, shake-reduction, a brighter pentaprism viewfinder instead of a pentamirror, twin control wheels, AA battery option, RAW/depth-of-field preview button, and it feels like a camera, not like a plastic toy. The K-50 sensor also does really well in low light compared to the T5, and although I shoot RAW, he prefers jpegs and I think the Pentax jpegs outperform the Canon jpegs. Also, the K-50 has AF fine tuning and many lenses that have quick shift, which you won't find in any Canon T series DSLRs.

The only areas where I'd say the T5 is better is video and the swivel review/live view screen if those are important to you.

He has 3 lenses but his favorite is the 18-55mm kit lens. For him it's the perfect focal range, size, weather-resistant, and plenty sharp. Being around me, a Dad that was a pro photographer and is now a photo teacher, he's played and used my 16-85mm, 18-135mm, etc, but still prefers his 18-55mm. If money and budget are not a concern, of course you'd be comparing choices between the Pentax K3, the Nikon D7200, and the Canon 7DII, but even there, the K3 has so much more in terms of "bang for the buck".

Pentax K-50 with the 18-55mm WR zoom....two thumbs up. BTW: The Pentax K-S1 is more at the level of the Canon T5, but I'd still recommend the K-50 over that.
01-16-2016, 05:00 AM   #4
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And don't forget the Astrotracer too, that's one big reason I got the K50 ��

01-16-2016, 06:02 AM - 1 Like   #5
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The K-50 is a great choice that you can grow with and continue to enjoy over time. It offers a brilliant combination of light weight, build quality, and strong image quality for stills, plus the lower price makes it well-suited for knock-around use without worry, as compared to the flagship bodies. It works great with older manual focus lenses. I can't think of a drawback if the overall size of a DSLR works for you. The K-50 with kit lens and a 50mm A f1.4 are a great combo for vacations. Enjoy!
01-16-2016, 06:21 AM   #6
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In everything but video the K-50 will blow every Rebel away, and the video on the Rebel is not what it is on the more expense Canons. The Rebels are decent cameras, but they really don't compare.

I think getting 18-55WR is a good idea because you won't get a WR lens any cheaper, and if you do get the red or white, you get the color lens which is not sold alone (totally unimportant for performance but kind of cool). My son has that combo and he likes the lens. If you can afford the 18-135 it is a better lens but the 18-55 is no slouch for the cost. For an extra $90 to &110 you could add a 50 or 35 prime.
01-16-2016, 09:23 AM   #7
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I got the K-50 as my first up to date DSLR. I'm an enthusiast too and still consider myself a beginner. The K-50 is an awesome camera, and It has been a great camera to grow into my photographer shoes with. I have yet to take advantage of all the many thing I could do with it, and I plan to keep it as a second body even after I upgrade (several years from now probably). I have never regretted buying it and the only time I get covetous of different gear is when I see things about new Pentax models on this site (never for Canon or Nikon stuff).

My brother has the Canon T3i Rebel and I've been out shooting with another guy who has one, and I can tell you that camera seems like it was designed to be used in auto mode, and the ability to change the aperture and shutter speed was an afterthought (mainly because it only has one wheel thingy). I think it's largely geared toward people who want the big nice camera but won't take the time to learn how to actually use a DSLR or how photography works in general. One HUGE reason I love the K-50 over the Canons is that it has a built in intervalometer, which the Canons don't and require you to buy an external one if you want to do time lapse.

Don't let the extra 2 megapixels on the Canon get you down. Instead think of these major advantages with the K-50:

Weather Sealing (makes me smile every time I go out in the snow or rain with my K-50)
Sensor Shift (built in shake reduction with any lens whereas with Canon you have to get the nicer lenses)
Intervalometer
Additional control wheel
Backwards compatibility for decades with old lenses
You can call yourself a Pentaxian and that's special. We're a rare and exotic breed.
Less expensive

About the kit lens, It's decent but I feel like the DA 35mm f2.4 and DA 50mm f1.8 prime lenses are a must have to bring out the full quality of this camera. You will fall in love with them once you see how sharp and clear those lenses are, and they are pretty inexpensive too. Others might disagree with this but I became spoiled after getting the 50 prime and I try to avoid using the kit lens. If you only get one of those primes, I suggest the 35mm as its focal length is more natural and I find myself backing up too much with the 50 (due to the cropped sensor in the K-50).

Good luck!
01-16-2016, 10:08 AM   #8
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Ok! Thanks everybody for all of the thoughtful replies. I'm glad that the two extra megapixels on the T5 aren't an issue. I'm not surprised; I still take gorgeous shots with my dad's old 8mp Canon Rebel which is from '03 or '04 I think.

A question in regards to the 50mm fast lens, is that a fixed focal length? Thanks.

01-16-2016, 10:20 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by toptenmaterial Quote
A question in regards to the 50mm fast lens, is that a fixed focal length? Thanks.
Yes, it's fixed at 50mm. I would recommend the 18-55 WR to start with, for the WR and versatility. It gives you a fairly wide range of focal lengths. After you become familiar with shooting, you will discover what focal lengths you use the most. Then, you could opt for a higher performing prime, such as the DA50 or DA35.
01-16-2016, 10:45 AM   #10
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Sort of off topic, but I figured I'd bring it up: I do mostly street shooting of the city here in Providence. Have you guys used any of the high end compacts? I'm also considering the Canon G7X or the Lumix LX100 (the latter for the 4/3 sensor). How are those going to stack up with the K50? My gut tells me that the big DSLR sensor is going to trump the features of those two compacts.
01-16-2016, 10:57 AM   #11
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If you plan to do any telephoto photography, the benefit of in-body shake reduction cannot be overstated. I use ED telescopes for birds and other wildlife and I get shake-reduction. I could never justify the cost of buying stabilized lenses with similar image quality. I also have an SMC 67 200/F4 that I purchased for astrophotography, but use for terrestrial photography as well, of course, and it benefits from in-body shake reduction too.
01-16-2016, 10:58 AM   #12
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Just got my K-50 from B&H a couple of weeks ago. Very pleased. A lot of bang for your buck. Got mine with the 18-135. Living in Oregon the weather sealing package was a no brainer. Didn't take long for me to want a faster prime lens though. After one week ordered the HD-DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited. No WR but hey, it's not always raining in the Pacific Northwest. No, really.
01-16-2016, 11:15 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by toptenmaterial Quote
I still take gorgeous shots with my dad's old 8mp Canon Rebel which is from '03 or '04 I think.

I'm not surprised. Ken Rockwell says 6 MP is plenty for anything. See his notes here: The Megapixel Myth.
01-16-2016, 11:18 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by toptenmaterial Quote
Sort of off topic, but I figured I'd bring it up: I do mostly street shooting of the city here in Providence. Have you guys used any of the high end compacts? I'm also considering the Canon G7X or the Lumix LX100 (the latter for the 4/3 sensor). How are those going to stack up with the K50? My gut tells me that the big DSLR sensor is going to trump the features of those two compacts.
I don't have any experience with those cameras, but for around the same price you can get a Samsung NX500 with a 16-50mm lens. It has an APS-C sensor. I was hiking with my K-50 a couple weeks ago and crossed paths with a guy who had that NX500. It's a fairly small camera, and he seemed to love the image quality! No viewfinder, though...
01-16-2016, 11:55 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by GlennG Quote
I'm not surprised. Ken Rockwell says 6 MP is plenty for anything. See his notes here: The Megapixel Myth.
That's funny! Back when I was starting out (way back in 2013) I printed some photos that I had posted on Instagram, which drastically reduces resolution I think. There is one in particular that I love- I'll show you if I can ever figure out how to post it from the phone. The point is, it's an 8x10 print at perhaps as low as 1/2 megapixels. Now from a professional standard that's a joke, and it's obviously grainy as hell but I love this shot!
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