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05-30-2016, 10:23 AM - 1 Like   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by ularula Quote
Reading your advice - and many others here, I'm thinking of sticking with Pentax.
Around here that is what we often call "Big Brain Thinking". I will rest easier knowing that some damn squirrel won't wake me up at 3 AM claiming to have found you as a Jumper!

Best Regards & visit here more often, it is full of useful information...and a little fun too!
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05-30-2016, 11:48 AM   #47
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Actually I don't know if the WiFi is useless. Now I can shoot concerts with RAW+ and get my photos to my editor more quickly with my KS-2. I can copy the jpgs to my iPad or iPhone, edit them and get them out. The flippy screen helped too where the stage was too tall for me to see over.

If anyone has any questions on quality, here is my first concert shoot with extremely tough backlight. Focus was fantastic and there is a ton of detail in the sensor. ISO was low for this shoot but I have full confidence with that.

Like I said on the KS-2 group, some of my Canon and Nikon colleagues left since the light was bad.

This shoot was super dusty as the wind was blowing like crazy in the desert. We were covered with dust and I never worried about the sealing.

Negatives? The only one was getting used to a new camera and accidentally changing with focus points with my thumb.


Pentax KS-2 Testing
by John Rudolph, on Flickr


Pentax KS-2 Testing
by John Rudolph, on Flickr

Last edited by john5100; 05-30-2016 at 11:54 AM.
05-30-2016, 02:17 PM - 3 Likes   #48
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As someone who has owned an Olympus OM-D E-M5, and also recently bought both a Fujifilm X-T1 and a Pentax K-S2, I think I have a pretty good basis of experience for answering this.

First: All of these are good cameras. None of these companies are selling junk nowadays.

In terms of value, or "bang for buck", nobody can touch Pentax right now. On eBay I payed more for a used and slightly scuffed X-T1 with a few bits missing (like the flash unit!) than I paid for the brand new K-S2 at retail. And, in some ways the K-S2 is a higher-specified camera, with a slightly better sensor and in-body stabilization. This same observation applies to lenses. Fuji lenses are exquisite, but you will get sticker shock, and you don't have a very broad catalog to choose from.

The biggest difference in usage and shooting experience is OVF versus EVF. The X-T1 has a huge and high-definition EVF that overlays lots of useful information. The "exposure preview" functionality means you're seeing an approximation of the image the camera will actually capture, including the effects of all your camera settings. It also can display some very helpful focusing aids, such as magnification, split image and focus peaking. It's lovely. However, I find it somewhat dim when I'm out in bright sunlight. It's never what I would call unusable, but even with the EVF brightness dialed up to maximum, the view becomes kind of dark and ugly. (The LCD EVF if in the Olympus was somewhat brighter than the OLED EVF in the Fuji, by the way, but inferior in other regards.)

By comparison, the K-S2 has one of the brightest and clearest pentaprism viewfinders I've ever seen. It's lovely and beautiful on bright sunny days. There's no obvious indication if the camera is mis-metering the scene in any way, though. If I am shooting RAW and importing into Lightroom, then it hardly matters. Those files have so much leeway for adjustment that it almost seems like there's no such thing as a badly exposed image. They're all fixable. (And it's convenient that the Pentax can save in DNG format!) With JPEG it may be a different story. Manual focusing with the K-S2 is hit-or-miss. The OVF is crisp enough to make you think, if you have acute vision, that you've nailed the focus, only to find out later that you did not. Its focusing aids are minimal and crude, both in the OVF (basic focus confirmation) and LCD (focus peaking with no adjustments). If you have enough time, you can magnify live view on the LCD, but manual focusing is not the K-S2's strength. At all.

Form factor. . . The K-S2 is reputedly the smallest weather-sealed DSLR. (The K-S1, with no weather sealing, is slightly smaller and a fair bit lighter but is reputed to suffer from shutter shock in some situations). For somebody who's been using mirrorless cameras for a while, the K-S2 seemed huge and felt at first like a boat anchor in my hand. However, it's mostly due to the thick and hand-filling DSLR "pistol grip", which is more a matter of familiarity and preference. In terms of fitting into a camera bag, which is what really matters the most (IMHO), either the K-S2 or the X-T1 fit into the same space in my ONA Bowery bag, plus room for two additional lenses -- as long as those lenses aren't excessively large. The Olympus system was somewhat more compact, but not really dramatically so. (For portability nothing can touch the Pentax Q7 anyhow!)

The tilt screen on the E-M5 and X-T1 is more convenient than the swivel screen of the K-S2. However, the K-S2's screen can be turned inward for protection. I've broken the screen on the E-M5 twice.

The E-M5 and X-T1 and K-S2 are all "weather sealed". Only Pentax has a reputation for being dragged through the swamps and the rain and mud, dust and sand, and snow and ice without missing a beat, though.

Both the Olympus and Fuji seem to me like mixed bags: brilliant in some ways, but also with unexpected pitfalls. IMHO the K-S2 is a well-balanced package with fewer "wow" features, but not many hidden pitfalls either.

So, maybe that's too much information? Let me boil it down if I can. . .

If you do a lot of manual focusing, the EVF is hard to beat. (And the Fuji, specifically, is hard to beat.)

If you do a lot of shooting outdoors in bright sunlight, and using autofocus, the Pentax DSLR is for you.

If size and weight are major factors in your mind, then Micro Four Thirds might be your best bet. (I've got to say, though, that I'm never giving up my Pentax Q7 kit!)

If you like to shoot raw and process in Lightroom, Pentax will provide the maximum convenience. If you like to shoot JPEG, then the exposure preview offered by an EVF may be valuable to you.

If you are moving from a camera with a thick grip (most DSLRs) to one with much smaller grip (most, but not all, mirrorless), or vice-versa, it will probably feel awkward at first. Most likely you can adjust if you give it a chance. Your hands are more versatile than you know.

If you drag your camera through the rain, mud, dust, etc., then the Pentax might give you more confidence.

I hope this helped!
05-30-2016, 03:42 PM   #49
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I like your assessment Tony and I agree that each of these cameras are tools and you pick the best one for the job. I shoot a lot at high ISO and I carry my gear for hours at a time. I'm weighing the benefits of the K1 vs the weight of the body and lenses.

05-30-2016, 06:40 PM - 1 Like   #50
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rupert Quote
I have two Fuji cameras and have not found the Fuji sites to come anywhere near what we have here at Pentax Forums. Here you have it all.....everything, and it's here and alive and active 24/7 365. Help is always here, conversation and plenty of detailed photographic information.
This is true. Not only the forums, but also the news and articles, and the equipment databases. I'm not aware of any other camera brand that has a community resource even remotely in the same class as this site. The entire catalog of lenses, for example -- including third parties, vintage and modern -- is fantastic for research.

I sometimes wonder if anybody at Ricoh appreciates how valuable this is.

---------- Post added 05-30-16 at 08:57 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by ularula Quote
Yes, maybe wifi is more in the gimmick department at present? Have read that quite a few impementations on different systems seem buggy, slow and jpeg only. Like my eyefi card - well probably better than that! I would want fast transfers, RAW files. But not really there yet on any camera?
Wi-Fi was a feature I did not really expect to use. However, I soon found myself trying it out on a "mud martin" nest full of hungry chicks. The parents wouldn't approach with me there, but my tripod didn't scare them while I sat indoors with my iPhone and watched.



My iPhone doesn't support NFC, so I had to transfer the connection info manually to get it started working. Some have complained that transferring photos from the camera to the phone is very slow. I haven't really tried that. Using the phone to control the camera, though, worked well for me. I can see this being genuinely useful in a range of situations.

---------- Post added 05-30-16 at 09:12 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by john5100 Quote
BTW - the KS2 is built like a brick and it's very fast.
I'll second the "built like a brick" comment. I gave the kit lens a miss and picked up a 20-40mm Limited for mine. That combination is one of the most solid-feeling cameras I've ever handled.
05-31-2016, 03:53 AM - 1 Like   #51
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One thing that always gets me with some mirrorless fans is how they say they love the light weight and small size, but then strap on a big and heavy fast zoom. To me I don't think you can go wrong with a mirrorless or a DSLR, quality is good across the manufacturers, but the critical thing is choosing your system based on your needs, not because someone said something or you read something about why x is better then y.

So if you like fast zooms (f2.8) or long primes (>100mm), the size and weight advantages of mirrorless are basically eliminated, doubly so if you use adapted glass. If you are happy with variable aperture zooms or system specific small primes, size and weight become a significant factor. Other things to consider are the classic EVF vs OVF, battery life (I can get 1,000 shots on a single charge with the LCD off on my K-3II), overall feature set (which will depend on manufacturer), lens/accessory range and prices and so on.

Only you can know what of these is important to you, so get out there and shop around. Make sure you try to get out there and physically handle your options - it makes a difference, and you would be surprised how unoticable a few 100 grams extra is with good ergonomics and design. Don't rely on Internet opinion for your final purchase
05-31-2016, 07:26 AM - 1 Like   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by GodsPetMonkey Quote
One thing that always gets me with some mirrorless fans is how they say they love the light weight and small size, but then strap on a big and heavy fast zoom.
Just because folks "love the light weight and small size" of m4/3 does not mean they need to take advantage of those attributes all the time. Kinda like users here who profess a love for the Limited lenses but use other lenses, too.
06-01-2016, 10:25 PM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
Just because folks "love the light weight and small size" of m4/3 does not mean they need to take advantage of those attributes all the time. Kinda like users here who profess a love for the Limited lenses but use other lenses, too.
You're exactly right. Just because one likes to use lightweight lenses on a mirrorless 95% of the time, doesn't mean one can't use a heavy lens the remaining 5% of the time. Many heavy lenses often come with their own tripod foot, which means hanging a lightweight camera off the heavy lens is trivial on a tripod.

With Sony building all these f2.8 zooms with such enthusiasm, I think that we'll see a more "full-size" mirrorless announced this year, the rumoured A9 perhaps. I'd be surprised if Canon didn't announce one FF mirrorless this year.

06-02-2016, 12:57 AM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
Just because folks "love the light weight and small size" of m4/3 does not mean they need to take advantage of those attributes all the time. Kinda like users here who profess a love for the Limited lenses but use other lenses, too.
Nothing wrong with a mix, but my point was more that you need to look past the marketing and hype and instead focus on the sort of shooting you do and plan to do - find the system that meets your needs.

My example was born out of a few people I know who switched from DSLRs with big and fast zooms to mirrorless for size and weight reasons, only to do what they did with the DSLR and use them with big and fast zooms all the time - these are not prime people (and would look down on a compact zoom as being consumer specced). If they are happy, that's fine, not my place to tell them how to feel, but I can't help but think they bought the marketing, not the reality.

If your plan is to focus on small primes or compact 'consumer' zooms then mirrorless can offer some great benefits in size and weight over a DSLR. But you still need to get out there and have a play to make sure it is the right fit. Same goes for any camera - it needs to fit you and your style, no matter how much marketing and bloggers rave about it.
06-02-2016, 02:43 AM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by GodsPetMonkey Quote
Nothing wrong with a mix, but my point was more that you need to look past the marketing and hype and instead focus on the sort of shooting you do and plan to do - find the system that meets your needs.

My example was born out of a few people I know who switched from DSLRs with big and fast zooms to mirrorless for size and weight reasons, only to do what they did with the DSLR and use them with big and fast zooms all the time - these are not prime people (and would look down on a compact zoom as being consumer specced). If they are happy, that's fine, not my place to tell them how to feel, but I can't help but think they bought the marketing, not the reality.

If your plan is to focus on small primes or compact 'consumer' zooms then mirrorless can offer some great benefits in size and weight over a DSLR. But you still need to get out there and have a play to make sure it is the right fit. Same goes for any camera - it needs to fit you and your style, no matter how much marketing and bloggers rave about it.
I totally agree. Finding out what you want to do and getting the right equipment you like and that fits your purpose is what everyone should do.
06-02-2016, 11:55 PM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by GodsPetMonkey Quote
.... If they are happy, that's fine, not my place to tell them how to feel, but I can't help but think they bought the marketing, not the reality.

. Same goes for any camera - it needs to fit you and your style, no matter how much marketing and bloggers rave about it.
It gets quite laughable after awhile. If you buy a DSLR, and i have bought several, noone questions your motivations. If you buy a mirrorless camera, you get these comments in forums that you have succumbed to "marketing and bloggers", and we all know what evil people they are.

Nikon isn't laughing anymore as they try to cut back on expenses worldwide.
06-03-2016, 03:11 AM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by philbaum Quote
It gets quite laughable after awhile. If you buy a DSLR, and i have bought several, noone questions your motivations. If you buy a mirrorless camera, you get these comments in forums that you have succumbed to "marketing and bloggers", and we all know what evil people they are.

Nikon isn't laughing anymore as they try to cut back on expenses worldwide.
I don't think so. No more than I would say that about someone who bought a full frame or a medium format camera.

But I do think that these sorts of cameras are more similar than they are different. The best mirrorless cameras attempt to have the same features that the best SLRs have. The images that you get from them are awfully similar. And if you use the same lenses, size is going to be awash as well.

Nikon's problem for a long time has been that they are still operating on a model that worked well in the early 2000s -- stick to an artificial update schedule and churn out new cameras every 12 to 18 months. The problem, of course, is that that sort of schedule doesn't work in a mature market, where people update their cameras when they break and not when there is a new model out. I see no particular indication that there is a huge exodus from Nikon, but I don't think, either that folks who bought a D7000 rushed out and bought a D7100 followed by a D7200 -- the same in the D5000 series.

We will see if Sony has learned that lesson. To this point, they have stuck to a very rapid release schedule and have built market share by dumping lots and lots of new models on the market. But eventually that part of the market will mature as well and then Sony will have to back off or they will be in the same situation that Nikon is in now.

You have to be honest, Phil. You like your A7r II, but what would make you buy an A7r III if it is still working? That is the conundrum that Sony is facing currently, it is just that the mirrorless market is a few years behind the SLR market with regard to its maturity and saturation level, but it will get to the same place and in that situation it is better to be small and flexible like Ricoh or Olympus than big and inflexible like Nikon or Sony.
06-03-2016, 08:14 AM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I don't think so. No more than I would say that about someone who bought a full frame or a medium format camera.
if you'll recall over the last couple of years, when crop sensor trolls on this forum were trashing the pentax ff camera as being an unnecessary waste of money, nothing to be gained with a bigger sensor, endless equivalency threads, etc... notice how they don't post that rubbish anymore?

it's similar to what mirrorless had to go thru... people feel threatened by disruptive technology.

QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
We will see if Sony has learned that lesson. To this point, they have stuck to a very rapid release schedule and have built market share by dumping lots and lots of new models on the market. But eventually that part of the market will mature as well and then Sony will have to back off or they will be in the same situation that Nikon is in now.
it's not the same thing; one of the reasons that nikon is in such bad shape is that 24%(?) increase in warranty/support costs problem that they created.

they have also lost market share to mirrorless, as proven by the cipa numbers; the dslr camp is mired in dead tech limitations, like mirror/shutter vibration, inferior efcs capability, weak video implementations, etc., it just doesn't have any technology breakthroughs that will take market share back from mirrorless.
06-03-2016, 09:48 AM - 1 Like   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by ularula Quote
I will buy a new camera this year, maybe a Pentax K-3ii successor, or maybe a mirrorless. The K-1 is just too big for me, though the same feature set in an APS-C body.... Mirrorless canditates are the M43 Lumix GX8, Fuji X-Pro2 or X-T2 (rumoured), or even Sony A7 iii (rumoured). I will not have several camera systems, not for me. I'm just a hobby photograper.

My question is what functionality that I am used to will I miss or need to adapt to? Would love to hear from Pentax users who know both Pentax and my MILC candidates.

K-3 ii lacks Wifi (no the Flucard is not good enough IMO) and an articulated screen.

I find that reviews are seldom comparative, usually just spinning out specs, with little balance. Some, like Imaging Resource, knows Pentax and can present pros and cons. I'm guessing these are things I might miss:
  • Hypermode with easy access to aperture and speed
    Grip
    Battery life
    Shake reduction / Ibis (missing on the Fuji)
    Optical viewfinder
    Build quality? My k10d is ten years old, with only one mode not selectable (which I never use). Maybe SR is faulty too. But it's been around, and l worry that other MILC cameras are not as sturdy?
    Weather sealing?
P/

Realively easy access to focus point also? With K10d I first switch to selective focus, then use the 4-way. Anything more difficult involving menus is out of the question. Would love that just by using the 4-way I would automatically get selective focus point.

I would of course have to sell lenses, not a fan of using adapters. This last point makes it hard switching! But maybe newer lens systems like m43, x or e-mount are more quiet and faster... Regarding lenses, is Pentax forgetting APS-C lenses now?

Newer top Pentaxes have dual cards, not sure if that's just nice to have or need...

As my SR seems a bit faulty, I've turned it off. Does impact low light shooting, but not daylight. Over on DPreview it seems Fuji owners are certain those that like SR /IBIS have limited skills, difficult to get a clear idea if Fujis are so much better than my K10d in low light that I wouldn't miss this?

Weather sealing seems to be another difference. I'm guessing that there is a difference between "splash and dust resistant" like the Sony and Pentax which really is well sealed (the Fuji seems also quite tough weather wise). I'm not often a jungle photographer, but would like to go on holidays to tropical destinations without being worried about damage!

So any balanced advice is greatly appreciated! And fed up about reading, just go out and take photos line. I'm using my old K10d, some practical advice from fellow Pentax photographers who have experience from mirrorless too would be great!
I haven't read all the replies however I think you are asking the wrong question...what will I gain if I switch...

personally I like pentax but I had a box load of legacy product when I switched from film....the decision was easy at the time because I didn't like any of the competition enough to change brands and still don't

today if I was starting out from scratch I would go Fuji for the same reason I stay with pentax...despite it's idiosyncratic style and performance I LIKE it

you can produce excellent photography with virtually any device on the market (I've had work published from an 8mp p&s Fujifilm)

my advice when approached about any product selection is buy what you WANT
you will be happier in the long run

good luck
06-03-2016, 10:11 AM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
But I do think that these sorts of cameras are more similar than they are different. The best mirrorless cameras attempt to have the same features that the best SLRs have. And if you use the same lenses,
Sure, and why not with regard to having similar features to DSLRs. Some design decisions are so fundamental, such as choosing OVF or EVF that they impact the rest of the camera design.

QuoteQuote:
We will see if Sony has learned that lesson. To this point, they have stuck to a very rapid release schedule and have built market share by dumping lots and lots of new models on the market. But eventually that part of the market will mature as well and then Sony will have to back off or they will be in the same situation that Nikon is in now.
I don't disagree. They have added some substantial changes such as IBIS in their 2nd gen.models.

QuoteQuote:
You have to be honest, Phil. You like your A7r II, but what would make you buy an A7r III if it is still working? in that situation it is better to be small and flexible like Ricoh or Olympus than big and inflexible like Nikon or Sony.
After buying the K3, i was one of those folks that argued against Pentax going to FF. I used a FF camera that a friend had, I changed my mind and am glad i did. So now i use my K3 for crappy weather and backup. My SDM 50-135 takes longer to "wake up" these days, but it still operates. But my camera of choice is the A7r2. and yes, when the A7r3 comes out - i doubt that i'll be buying it.

And I've always said there are pros and cons to being a smaller company. I also refrain from giving advice to folks about which cameras to buy. Its a complex decision.

Met with a customer yesterday, pulled a bunch of pictures out of storage, and he bought one and took another home with him to show his wife - things you can do in a small town. After he left, another customer came into the gallery, saw all the picture i had pulled out, also bought one of my pictures. Than one of the gallery board members, asked me to use 8 of my pictures to fill an empty space left by a painter who had rented space but not used it all. Serendipity strikes again.

Last edited by philbaum; 06-03-2016 at 10:18 AM.
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