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09-21-2017, 04:20 PM   #1
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K-1 versus KP noise levels

I predominately shoot birds with a K-1 and a K-3 II, using the D FA 150-450 almost always with the DA AF Rear converter 1.4x AW. This means wide open is f/8.0 hence the shutter speeds needed for these subjects often require higher ISO.
I love the IQ and low noise of the K-1 and the reach and frame rate of the K-3 II, but quite often find the noise level of K-3 II more than I would like.
What I would really like is a K-3 II with the low noise/IQ of the K-1 but perhaps that's just wishful thinking.
I note that the KP is reported to have improved noise levels, but have not seen anything that allows a comparison with the K-1. Is there any info/data that allows such a comparison?
I guess what I'm really looking/hoping for is the K-3 II successor to go a long way towards bridging that gap.

Cheers,
Terry

09-21-2017, 04:28 PM   #2
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Here, check this page of the KP review - it should help get you started:

Pentax KP Review - High ISO Low Light Performance | PentaxForums.com Reviews

And I have the same equipment you do, and am doing most of my birding with my K3II, and I agree. I want the K3II crop/pixel density combo and the K1 noise levels. I'm waiting/hoping to see what the next APS-C flagship is like. It might just do the trick. Seems nuts at one level, since the K3II is such a nice camera, but I have a daughter I could pass it down to, so a potential win for everyone
09-21-2017, 05:12 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by tduell Quote
I note that the KP is reported to have improved noise levels, but have not seen anything that allows a comparison with the K-1. Is there any info/data that allows such a comparison?
G'day Terry,

This link: Special K? Pentax K-1 Review: Digital Photography Review is to the K-1 review at DPReview. It allows comparison with other cameras for both JPEG and RAW output at various ISO's. You can move the area in the frame by moving the B&W box thingy around the image to suss out the noise of the K-1, versus three other cameras. Hopefully the link will include the three cameras I set being, the KP, K3II and the 645Z. This should be a good start to answer your questions on improved noise.

Tas
09-21-2017, 08:10 PM   #4
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I don't yet have a K-1, but I do have the KP, and compared to my other bodies, which are numerous, it is easily the best I've experienced in higher-ISO/low noise/sharpness retention. I have a very high impression of the KP. It was designed specifically to achieve the closest possible IQ and low-noise performance to the K-1 in a uniquely compact APS-C body. Every reliable source that has evaluated the KP has concluded this goal to have been successfully reached.

We do have some PF members who do have both and have substantiated this conclusion. Sandy Hancock comes to mind- someone who is very experienced, has the K-1, and has a very high regard for his KP.

09-22-2017, 01:48 AM   #5
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The KP's noise performance is almost as good as the the K-1's. On pixel level it is better, but because the K-1 has a higher resolution it is comparatively a bit ahead. Noise is less coarse and there is a little more detail on similar magnification.
09-22-2017, 02:05 AM - 4 Likes   #6
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You rang?

K-1 at 3200 on a ship between Tianjin and Fukuoka



KP at 3200 in Siena



They both do very well.
09-22-2017, 09:13 AM   #7
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They're letting people wearing shorts and t-shirts in duomi now? I haven't been to Italy in a few years, but that's still surprising.
09-22-2017, 09:30 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by tduell Quote
I predominately shoot birds with a K-1 and a K-3 II, using the D FA 150-450 almost always with the DA AF Rear converter 1.4x AW. This means wide open is f/8.0 hence the shutter speeds needed for these subjects often require higher ISO.
I love the IQ and low noise of the K-1 and the reach and frame rate of the K-3 II, but quite often find the noise level of K-3 II more than I would like.
What I would really like is a K-3 II with the low noise/IQ of the K-1 but perhaps that's just wishful thinking.
I note that the KP is reported to have improved noise levels, but have not seen anything that allows a comparison with the K-1. Is there any info/data that allows such a comparison?
I guess what I'm really looking/hoping for is the K-3 II successor to go a long way towards bridging that gap.

Cheers,
Terry
Your lens setup is very large and heavy. The KP is compact and an excellent 2nd body to the K-1 as a general rule. It is also compact in the bag to carry along. In my case, like others, when it comes to large lenses I do much of the handling by holding mainly the lens to support the ensemble anyway, so a compact body is still ok. With the KP, you might possibly be happier with the additional battery grip, which offers better balance with large lenses. But it does not have the grip's top overhang like the K-3 due to the vertical front finger dial. I bought the BG and found handling balance improved with my FA* 300mm f/4.5 lens, which is not as heavy as your D FA 150-450mm. But it does add size and weight. If using a tripod, it should matter little. I have yet to put mine on a tripod, but someone wrote that the BG was preferred when using one with a large lens attached. But then, your lens has its own tripod foot anyway. Holding and body preferences do vary with individuals. The KP is a great camera, but If you'd prefer a body like the K-3 II you might consider waiting for its replacement.

I would have thought that f/5.6 being wide open at full zoom, that with your 1.4x TC it would be a bit under f/8 but that would still greatly compromise AF if not eliminate it.


Last edited by mikesbike; 09-22-2017 at 10:03 AM.
09-22-2017, 09:45 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by dcshooter Quote
They're letting people wearing shorts and t-shirts in duomi now? I haven't been to Italy in a few years, but that's still surprising.
Restrictions applie into the biggest places like S. Pietro (actually Vatican State) , Duomo di Milano and so on. In many places restinctions applie less rigorously. Unfortunately the restrictions applie also for taking photos....
09-22-2017, 01:50 PM   #10
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I had a feeling Sandy would have some good examples to offer. Great dynamic range too, as well as low noise. Shadow detail is excellent, while those white t-shirts are not blown out.
09-22-2017, 02:51 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by dcshooter Quote
They're letting people wearing shorts and t-shirts in duomi now? I haven't been to Italy in a few years, but that's still surprising.
Siena was a bit more casual, but shoulders had to be covered - hence the disposable shawls visible in the photo. The entire town is utterly charming and should be on the itinerary of every visitor to northern Italy.

St Marks in Venice and St Peters in Vatican City were stricter - definitely no shorts there. St Marks didn't allow any photography either unfortunately, but it is a mind-boggling place well worth a visit.
09-22-2017, 03:14 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
They both do very well.
Yes, I would give the K-1 the edge, though only mildly so...perhaps more so for detail capture an upsample comparison of the same subject


Steve
09-22-2017, 03:31 PM   #13
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Thanks clickclick and Tas for those helpful links.
Mikesbike, the lens and 1.4xTC reports f/8.0 wide open, and I rarely have any autofocus problems.

Cheers,
Terry
09-22-2017, 03:33 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Yes, I would give the K-1 the edge, though only mildly so...perhaps more so for detail capture an upsample comparison of the same subject
I make no claim that the comparison is in any way scientific. The KP shot was pushed very hard in post processing, which increases noise significantly. I'll dig around for some other examples.
09-22-2017, 03:57 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
I make no claim that the comparison is in any way scientific. The KP shot was pushed very hard in post processing, which increases noise significantly. I'll dig around for some other examples.
I am curious. Are both examples OOC JPEG or are they processed from RAW. The reason I ask is that I have not seen examples of the KP noise performance without the in-camera processing.


Steve
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