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02-10-2016, 09:53 AM   #1
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Pondering some alternatives

So, my K50 has been at Precision Camera since Jan 8 (today is Feb 10). The symptoms are the aperture motor failure black image of death. The repair went into waiting for parts after PC had it for about a week and a half. So here is what I'm thinking. Do I really want to continue with a company that cannot keep its only warranty repair center stocked in parts for a problem that has shown up on several K30's (including mine) and K50s or is it time to move on? Is it really worth while having a Pentax warranty at all? Would it be better to buy grey market and acquire a Square Trade or Mack warranty and choose my repair center. Would it even make sense to acquire a grey market K5iis, a camera that has a rep for reliabiltity/ So here are some alternatives:

  • Wait for PC to fix my K50 and hope that all will be well when they finish - $0 and no camera for an unknown length of time
  • Buy a new K3 (I really don't need the K3ii) from a Pentax authorized supplier - between $600 and $700 and instant gratification
  • Buy a new K5iis (Yes they still seem to exist grey market) and do the separate warranty thing - about the same money as the K3 which tells you something- instant gratification but with a device that may have been sitting g-d knows where for years.
  • Buy a Canon M3 with evf (something less than $600) - instant gratification, warranty not limited to dealing with PC, able to use my OM and Pentax lenses with an adapter including my OM Tokina ATX 90mm macro. (I manual focus anyway)
I had looked at a few other mirrorless brands and settled on Canon because of their reputation for reliability and choice of where to get warranty work done. Right now I am leaning towards the M3 or another mirrorless apsc from canon that may be announced soon. I'd like to hear everyone's thoughts on this.

02-10-2016, 10:44 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by kernos Quote
Would it be better to buy grey market and acquire a Square Trade or Mack warranty and choose my repair center.
Would that work? Can anybody else get parts faster? (Can anybody else even do the work?) There was a rumor about Ricoh opening their own repair center in the US soon -- hope that's true...
02-10-2016, 04:22 PM   #3
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maybe the question is, will you be ok manually focusing with EVF?
02-10-2016, 04:53 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by ppppsssstttt Quote
maybe the question is, will you be ok manually focusing with EVF?
If the EVF has focus peaking, yes...

02-10-2016, 05:30 PM   #5
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Nikon apparently has similar issues with getting parts from overseas. But Nikon lists more than one authorized repair facility on their website... so while you may get better repair work (in theory) you likely won't get a speedier repair.
02-10-2016, 06:21 PM   #6
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Canon.... eeeeeewwwwwww

Sorry, those are my thoughts.

I've read just as many posts (and talked to a few ) from Canon users switching to Nikon, and quite a few Nikon users switching to Pentax, I think you're a little naive thinking your going to solve you problem by switching brands. The question is, do you like your K-50 or don't you?

If you don't like it, pick what pleases you, if you like it, buy another one. It's always good to have a backup. K-S1s are pretty cheap right now, go for an upgrade. It doesn't have to be a K-3.

If you're looking at mirrorless, who cares when your K-50 comes back? It isn't what you want.

Last edited by normhead; 02-10-2016 at 06:28 PM.
02-10-2016, 07:24 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the responses. Here are some thoughts based on what you all said:
-Yes, I would prefer an optical viewfinder, but that limits me to Pentax dslr's if I want to keep my pentax mount lenses. I'm assessing whether it makes sense to keep making investments in a system where the manufacturer does not keep parts in stock to fix a common failure. I really wish I had purchased a K5 ii or iis instead of the K50 as the number of reported issues seems to be lower. YMMV.
-Having said that , I like the K50. For that matter I liked the K30 (that had an aperture motor failure after a year out of warranty). The handling is great and the image quality is great too although since I use LR it would be better to have the K5iis or K3 with a few more bits to play with on raw images. I liked the K30 enough to buy a K50 hoping that the failure issue had been resolved. In my case, and perhaps I'm an outlier, that hasn't been the case.
-I prefer manual focusing. I am a dinosaur, I know. But having said that, there is this moment when I'm focusing and I see just what I want and press the shutter. As a result, I'm entirely happy with adapters with no autofocus. I also drive a six speed manual gear shift sports car, so there is a pattern here.
-There is an attraction to mirrorless evf cameras that goes beyond size. It means that with adapters I can use most lenses from most companies. There is this whole world to explore there. The downside is that mirrorless cameras seem to have higher failure rates than dslrs, so I have some doubts even with Canon who at least statistically has fewer problems overall. I may still spring for a K3 and sell the K50 if it ever gets back from PC in working condition. As it is the K30 is my second camera for manual focus, manual exposure lenses so I don't need a third camera. However, the longer it takes Pentax and PC to resolve this, the less likely this will be the way I go and the more likely that I'll go with someone's mirrorless camera.
- I do not want to purchase a camera that turns into an expensive paperweight every two years. I just want to take pictures and upgrade when there is a clear reason too. s the actual image quality (barring pixel shift) of the K3ii that much better than a K5? Maybe in gigantic prints that I'll never make, but certainly not in my day to day shooting. I reject the idea that it is ok replace cameras the way we replace laptops. Laptops get better in really noticeable ways every two years and cameras don't. Laptops also get cheaper for the same basic class of functionality. Cameras add bells and whistles that have little to do with actual IQ, especially if you are doing MF anyway.

So a bit of a rant, but it's what I'm thinking.



So a bit of a rant, but it reflects what I'm thinking
02-11-2016, 04:55 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by kernos Quote
-I prefer manual focusing. I am a dinosaur, I know. But having said that, there is this moment when I'm focusing and I see just what I want and press the shutter. As a result, I'm entirely happy with adapters with no autofocus. I also drive a six speed manual gear shift sports car, so there is a pattern here.
I like your pattern. Out of interest, have you ever considered going back to film?

As far as mirrorless is concerned, I must admit to a soft spot for Olympus (I once had a half-frame Olympus Pen EE-2) so if I ever went mirrorless I would consider them; their M4/3 systems look nice, have a very old-fashioned style, some of them look about the size of my MX, and I'm almost sure they have at least an M42 adapter and possibly a K-mount adapter as well.

That being said, Fuji's APS-C cameras are also pretty small, some of them are also pretty retro, and the sensor is bigger. Difficult call. For the time being I'm happy with the K-mount and anticipate moving up to the full-frame eventually. Sorry to hear you had such an awful time with reliability issues.

02-11-2016, 07:26 AM   #9
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Not going to make the Fan Boys happy here, but somebody has to say it.

Ordinarily Otis would be here beating the crapola out of you for criticizing Pentax, but Otis is a fair minded and a reasonable squirrel. You have a case...and a good one.

Let's get the ugly part out of the way first. Pentax service sucks! Until we as users make this clear and demand better, it will keep sucking.For years we have heard complaints and for years we have done nothing. We need an organized coalition of Pentax shooters to address RIcoh and demand a better system for repairs that will not hold our cameras hostage for weeks or months for simple repairs that should take no longer than a day or two.

If you are disgusted because of poor service, Otis believes you are fully justified to change brands.......although it hurts his little heart to say that.

Someone find the appropriate Forum here, start a thread addressed to Ricoh demanding better repair service, and let's let everyone sign it. We will then send it to Ricoh and demand a written response.

As for other brands having bad service......what does that have to do with Pentax. It's like saying everyone is dying from contaminated food at certain places, so we should just accept it at out own eating places?

For your information, Fuji replaced the sensors in thousands of X10 cameras in only a few weeks. They were dedicated to service in a timely manner for the sake of their customers and their own reputation. Where is that Pentax dedication?

Far too often only the squeaking wheel gets the grease. It's time to do some loud squeaking.

At a time in my life I desperately needed my DA*50-135, it spent two months in the shop for repair of a bad SDM motor....a known defect. The repair cost me $235...and I had it done twice on that lens. Even worse, the lens was in the shop longer than it was in my hands. I feel your pain, and this is not acceptable....sweeping it under the rug will only guarantee that it will continue.
With a new FF coming soon...how many shooters want to admire it if it is in the shop and unavailable for weeks or months?
Ricoh needs to think about us for a change if they want us to think about them.

Regards! This message approved by Otis Squirrel.
02-11-2016, 07:52 AM   #10
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@Rupert
I think that post might deserve you a BBT award finally?
02-11-2016, 08:10 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by bertwert Quote
@Rupert
I think that post might deserve you a BBT award finally?
You know Bert, I was thinking that myself...I'd sure like to get one of these...


I asked Otis about it moments ago, and this was his reply....

"Rupert, you old fool, you only wrote down what I told you to say, without my help you couldn't even log in to PForums or make it through a day without a catastrophe."

So....I guess not?

Regards!
02-11-2016, 09:36 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rupert Quote
It's time to do some loud squeaking.
Squirrels are good at that. Well, it's more like a shrill chirruping, but you get my drift.
02-11-2016, 09:55 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by pathdoc Quote
Squirrels are good at that. Well, it's more like a shrill chirruping, but you get my drift.
Living among thousands of Otis' squirrels in his Giant Squirrel Army....I hear it Loud and Clear every day!

Regards!
02-11-2016, 10:26 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by kernos Quote
Buy a Canon M3 with evf (something less than $600) - instant gratification, warranty not limited to dealing with PC, able to use my OM and Pentax lenses with an adapter including my OM Tokina ATX 90mm macro. (I manual focus anyway)I had looked at a few other mirrorless brands and settled on Canon because of their reputation for reliability and choice of where to get warranty work done. Right now I am leaning towards the M3 or another mirrorless apsc from canon that may be announced soon. I'd like to hear everyone's thoughts on this.
I know prices for used Canon FF are attractive now, I was thinking myself to sell my Canon and some old lenses toward some good condition mark. Then I reminded myself about mirror problem with Canon, so I can't use my all old glass. Also I'm so spoiled with convenience using MF lenses on Pentax, Canon will irritate me, it does now, and I stopped using MF Pentax lenses on Canon. And knowing myself, with Canon FF I will trigger LBA for that camera in addition to Pentax LBA
All I'm trying to say, think carefully before you go for Canon, if you really want it. Especially now when Pentax FF is coming.
02-11-2016, 11:18 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by micromacro Quote
And knowing myself, with Canon FF I will trigger LBA for that camera in addition to Pentax LBA
This is where it's important to remember what Jesus said about being a slave to two masters.
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