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10-04-2008, 02:07 AM   #1
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K100D vs K100D super

The obvious differences between the K100D and the K100D super are the dust removal feature and the SDM support of the latter.

At Colorfoto, das Magazin für digitale Fotografie - colorfoto.de Pentax K100D Super (in German, sorry) further differences are reported:

The K100D super is said to have a better JPEG generation but also more noise.

Can anyone confirm these further differences and perhaps explain why the noise performance of the K100D super is (allegedly) inferior?

So far, I've assumed the "super" version was technically identical, with just the dust removal and SDM support added.

10-04-2008, 02:42 AM   #2
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I would agree with you last line.
K100Ds only added SDM and dust removal, I do't think there were any other changes between those two...
10-04-2008, 04:28 AM   #3
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first time I hear of inferior noise performance on the Super.
For one, the sdm and dust removal are the only diffs I know of, and secondly, if noise is more, it's probably just a software/noise reduction thing on camera. Either way, When I had my (fantastic) K100D, I saw no need for going to the super, though Im sure it's as great as the non-super.
10-04-2008, 09:24 AM   #4
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If there was a change in JPG processing, it would be a software change only. Any changes would also have been included in software updates for the non-super. Maybe they were comparing a K100D ver 1.0 to a K100Ds with ver. 1.0. The non-super wouldn't have any updates, which would be included in the super ver 1.0. Who knows.

Dave

10-04-2008, 04:21 PM   #5
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Thanks for your responses.

QuoteOriginally posted by axl Quote
K100Ds only added SDM and dust removal, I do't think there were any other changes between those two...
Yeah that's what I thought, but the testers seemed to be very positive about an improved JPEG output.

QuoteOriginally posted by marlon Quote
first time I hear of inferior noise performance on the Super.
I was surprised too, but the testers thought it was quite noticeable.

QuoteOriginally posted by marlon Quote
and secondly, if noise is more, it's probably just a software/noise reduction thing on camera.
Yes, very likely. It seems not very probably that the sensor quality has dropped. Regarding software noise reduction: I really like Pentax's approach which doesn't aim at complete removal but tries to retain detail as much as possible. Although the noise figures aren't as good and the images do not look as clean, I prefer them over the smeared and sterile looking counterparts from a Nikon D40, for example.

The test magazine I quoted above once did a pretty pathetic comparison, which was mainly based on measured noise levels. Obviously the ranking that results from such an investigation has very limited value.

QuoteOriginally posted by marlon Quote
Either way, When I had my (fantastic) K100D, I saw no need for going to the super, though Im sure it's as great as the non-super.
Yes, actually I'm really, really happy and more than over the moon with my K100D. The reason I created the thread was that I tried to learn whether a change to the K100D super would only be advantageous or whether it would also entail disadvantages. Not that I'm envisioning a change in the near future, but should an opportunity arise to trade in my non-super for a super, I wanted to be prepared for an informed decision.

While I don't believe that the dust removal will work wonders, having the option to use SDM lenses would be nice. But I think I'll survive very well without that option and believe it could be great fun to rather try out classic lenses. Anyhow, in my case the limiting factor w.r.t. my pictures is not in front of the camera body, but behind it.


QuoteOriginally posted by Big Dave Quote
If there was a change in JPG processing, it would be a software change only.
Yes, that's very likely. But such software changes can make quite a difference (at least for pixel peepers).

QuoteOriginally posted by Big Dave Quote
Any changes would also have been included in software updates for the non-super.
I don't think so. At least the "changes list" for the latest v1.02 firmware version for the K100D doesn't mention an improved JPEG processing. The two firmware versions for the "super" and "non-super" versions are certainly not identical as the key sequence for accessing the "debug / service" menu works with the "non-super" version but not with the "super" version and obviously the new "super" features need to be supported.

While it would be nice for "non super" users to participate from improvements to the firmware of similar models, I can sort of understand why Pentax avoids the cost of actually doing this.

Thanks again for the responses. It'll be cool to get further (perhaps even insider) perspectives on the differences between "super" vs "non-super".
10-05-2008, 07:26 AM   #6
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I had both the K100D and K100D Super and jpeg output is pretty similar.
I don't believe the K100D Super fares any worse than the K100D.
10-05-2008, 07:33 AM   #7
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How could there possibly be any difference in high ISO noise when it's the same sensor with the same number of pixels? Certainly the jpeq quality could be different, and so could the noise reduction algorithm. But inherent sensor noise, no way. Shooting in raw will give the same jpeg quality with the same noise levels on either camera.
10-06-2008, 06:06 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by creampuff Quote
I had both the K100D and K100D Super and jpeg output is pretty similar.
Can you confirm that the models are identical in other aspects?

How effective did you find the dust removal of the K100D super?

10-06-2008, 06:10 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
How could there possibly be any difference in high ISO noise when it's the same sensor with the same number of pixels?
Perhaps they went for a lower quality selection of the sensor? Perhaps they changed the wiring between the sensor and the A/D converters? Perhaps some new (SDM) electronics interferes with the highly sensitive A/D conversion?

All this is just wild speculation and I don't actually think any of this is true, but in principle it would be possible that the testers measured slightly higher noise that doesn't come from a different JPEG conversion.
10-06-2008, 07:51 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
Can you confirm that the models are identical in other aspects?

How effective did you find the dust removal of the K100D super?
Aside from the SDM support, Dust Removal (DR) system (which does work), there is the support for high-capacity SDHC memory cards. The cameras are pretty similar otherwise. K100D Super is 10grams heavier.
10-06-2008, 09:30 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by creampuff Quote
Aside from the SDM support, Dust Removal (DR) system (which does work), there is the support for high-capacity SDHC memory cards.
The latest firmware update for the K100D allows them to use the SDHC cards.
10-06-2008, 10:32 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
Perhaps they went for a lower quality selection of the sensor? Perhaps they changed the wiring between the sensor and the A/D converters? Perhaps some new (SDM) electronics interferes with the highly sensitive A/D conversion?
And note that these are pretty much the same suppositions made regarding why the K200D might have better high ISO performance than the K10D despite having the same sensor. In tha case, the ADC is *known* to be different, but there may well be other changes too. Or it could be that the claims of K200D superiority are just wrong. The banding problems on the K10D seemed to affect some more than others, and aside from a problem caused specifically by the battery grip, I don't know that anyone ever got a complete handle on what went into those banding problems and how thy might have been alleviated on K200D or - is has been also been claimed - on later-model K10D's.
10-06-2008, 10:46 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
Thanks again for the responses. It'll be cool to get further (perhaps even insider) perspectives on the differences between "super" vs "non-super".
If you're ever going to be in Auckland, PM me first and we can do a direct side by side comparison (I have a super). And maybe then take some actual photos
10-06-2008, 06:35 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by cpopham Quote
If you're ever going to be in Auckland, PM me first and we can do a direct side by side comparison (I have a super). And maybe then take some actual photos
Thanks for the invitation! That'll be very cool. 8-) I'd love to do a photo tour (taking pictures with company that is). Although it may take a while, sooner or later I'll surely visit Auckland again and it'll be great to meet you there.
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