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03-01-2007, 06:58 AM   #1
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Photography Review K10D Review

There is a new review on the K10D at Photography Review. My only critique is the question of apparent sharpness. This is what I wrote based on my own usage:

Hello John;

I found the review very insightful except for an issue or two. As a past sponsor of Canon and now Pentax, I found the issue of the K10D compared to the XTi/D400 not quite accurate in my own usage. In fact one of the most credible photo magazines in Europe, "Chasseur D'Images" in there most up to date testing methodology, had to downgrade the resolution results of the Canon and Nikon and in their test rated the K10D number one at 6.2, followed by the Canon 400D at 5.6, the Sony Alpha at 5.4, Nikon D80 at 5.3 and Olympus E400 at 5.2. This is a very rigorous test found on page 145 in the Jan-Feb 2007 Issue. In the printing of my images on A3+ for my portfolio, the images are stunning. In fact the Pentax beat all of the contenders at all ISO's.

Regards
Ben

03-01-2007, 08:47 AM   #2
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JPEG or RAW

QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
There is a new review on the K10D at Photography Review. My only critique is the question of apparent sharpness. This is what I wrote based on my own usage:

Hello John;

I found the review very insightful except for an issue or two. As a past sponsor of Canon and now Pentax, I found the issue of the K10D compared to the XTi/D400 not quite accurate in my own usage. In fact one of the most credible photo magazines in Europe, "Chasseur D'Images" in there most up to date testing methodology, had to downgrade the resolution results of the Canon and Nikon and in their test rated the K10D number one at 6.2, followed by the Canon 400D at 5.6, the Sony Alpha at 5.4, Nikon D80 at 5.3 and Olympus E400 at 5.2. This is a very rigorous test found on page 145 in the Jan-Feb 2007 Issue. In the printing of my images on A3+ for my portfolio, the images are stunning. In fact the Pentax beat all of the contenders at all ISO's.

Regards
Ben
The RAW results are quite exceptional (Even DPReview said so). I think its just the JPEGs that cause concern. However I am finding them quite good for detail even though they benefit from low radius sharpening.

I was assuming you shot RAW?
03-01-2007, 09:23 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
There is a new review on the K10D at Photography Review. My only critique is the question of apparent sharpness. This is what I wrote based on my own usage:

Hello John;....

Ben,

What review were you responding to? The review of the K10D on photographyreview.com that I can find, posted February 28, is not by someone named John, but by Laurence Chen. Here's the link. I see your review there in the "user reviews" tab.

Will
03-01-2007, 09:35 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by WMBP Quote
Ben,

What review were you responding to? The review of the K10D on photographyreview.com that I can find, posted February 28, is not by someone named John, but by Laurence Chen. Here's the link. I see your review there in the "user reviews" tab.

Will

Hmmm. Same review I found too.

03-01-2007, 10:33 AM   #5
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the reviewer admitted that the quality of the shots is very much lens dependent.
I don't know why reviewers don't use a series of lenses to get a real review of the camera.
I have yet to see any noticable CA with my sigma 17-70mm lens
just my 2 cents

cheers

randy
03-01-2007, 10:55 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by slipchuck Quote
the reviewer admitted that the quality of the shots is very much lens dependent. I don't know why reviewers don't use a series of lenses to get a real review of the camera.

Randy,

Yes, I wonder the same thing. As someone who moved from fixed-lens cameras to the digital SLR game only recently (end of 2006), one of things that has been a continuing source of uncertainty for me is the distinction between the camera's capabilities and the capabilities of the lens. Add in the user-competence (or incompetence) factor, and it can be rather perplexing.

Will
03-01-2007, 11:59 AM   #7
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I may be going off on a tangent here. But the mention of lens quality is what prompted me to post this.

I recently received a bunch of Nikon brochures (D200, D80, lenses and Speedlights) from a good friend of mine. His company was looking into an SLR, but I'm not sure what was purchased.

So I looked through. The brochures are obviously covered with some very spectacular shots, taken by professionals. I look to see the shot data - not to my surprise, very few, if any were shot with the kit lens or a consumer grade lens. If there were any, perhaps it was 1 or 2 out of the 30-plus pictures in the brochures. I mean these lenses were all capable of pulling f2.8.

So, I know the Nikon cameras are capable - are the gear and lenses used to get those shots within reach of a general consumer? And why can't we see shots on these brochures taken with a kit lens?
03-01-2007, 01:55 PM   #8
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RAW

QuoteOriginally posted by *isteve Quote
The RAW results are quite exceptional (Even DPReview said so). I think its just the JPEGs that cause concern. However I am finding them quite good for detail even though they benefit from low radius sharpening.

I was assuming you shot RAW?
Yes you are correct, I only shoot RAW DNG using Camera Raw in PS.

Ben

03-01-2007, 03:24 PM   #9
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it does give a false impression when an expensive lens is used but its usually common with any hardware review to make sure the thing u are reviewing isnt being held back by some other component..

we all know the kits lens will hold back the potential of any camera.. we would be foolish to kid ourselves otherwise..

a dslr for the same price as a good compact is rubbish.. or a k10 with a kit lens is a waste of space..

a little more honesty would require a "kit lens" that matched the camera.. but the real cost of a dslr would be a little too obvious..

having spent some hours trying to tell a friend what camera to buy has made all this very obvious to me..

the bottom line here is that after all this the guy still has no idea of what camera to buy.. a k100 at the "kit lens" money sounds good compared to say a pansonic FZ50 but throw in a few lenses to make it usefull and a different story emerges..

trog

Last edited by trog100; 03-01-2007 at 03:29 PM.
03-01-2007, 04:32 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by trog100 Quote
it does give a false impression when an expensive lens is used but its usually common with any hardware review to make sure the thing u are reviewing isnt being held back by some other component..

we all know the kits lens will hold back the potential of any camera.. we would be foolish to kid ourselves otherwise..

a dslr for the same price as a good compact is rubbish.. or a k10 with a kit lens is a waste of space..

a little more honesty would require a "kit lens" that matched the camera.. but the real cost of a dslr would be a little too obvious..

having spent some hours trying to tell a friend what camera to buy has made all this very obvious to me..

the bottom line here is that after all this the guy still has no idea of what camera to buy.. a k100 at the "kit lens" money sounds good compared to say a pansonic FZ50 but throw in a few lenses to make it usefull and a different story emerges..
I agree totally.

Computer manufacturers advertise the prices of models with enough memory to start the computer - but not enough to run programs, so buyers need to understand that the price of the computer system is actually the base price PLUS the cost of an immediate memory upgrade. As for cameras, I have been saying that buyers new to digital SLRs should anticipate spending - and spending fairly soon - at least as much on lenses as they spend on the camera. Either that, or buy a digital SLR and be prepared to feel that it's far less capable than a lower-priced fixed-lens camera like my old Canon PowerShot S3 IS.

And with respect to the matter of which lenses to use when testing, I agree also that the only way to eliminate the lens as a variable, when testing a camera, is to use very high-quality lenses. If the photo sucks, you will feel that you probably shouldn't blame the lenses, so it must be the camera's problem. I suppose it would be nice if advertisers posted a note on their ads saying something like this:
The photos in this ad were taken by photographers who are much better than you are, using lenses you won't be able to afford, and the models in the photos are more beautiful than anybody you know. So don't expect YOUR pictures to look this good!
But I don't expect such a warning to appear any time soon. :-)

Will
03-01-2007, 09:22 PM   #11
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"The photos in this ad were taken by photographers who are much better than you are, using lenses you won't be able to afford, and the models in the photos are more beautiful than anybody you know. So don't expect YOUR pictures to look this good!"

love it Will..

trog
03-01-2007, 09:43 PM   #12
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just for interest the cost of my basic k100 and what i consider needed lens to make it fully usable at UK current prices

camera..£400.. tamron 18 x 200 walk-about..£270.. sigma 70 x 300 apo..£170.. sigma 50mm 2.8 macro..£200.. kenco 1.5 tele..£70..

total.. £1110.. or at todays exchange rate about 2000 US dolllars..

cost of panasonic FZ50.. £340.. not much similarity in price tween my entry level dslr and a decent compact to me..

someone is quite clearly kidding someone.. he he

trog

ps.. course i do have the price disadvantage of living in the UK..

ps..2.. add another cost of the basic camera plus kit lens price to the list for the odd sigma flash plus othere ebay lens purchases.. jeesh it gets worse.. he he he

Last edited by trog100; 03-01-2007 at 10:05 PM.
03-02-2007, 01:28 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
There is a new review on the K10D at Photography Review. My only critique is the question of apparent sharpness.

Regards
Ben
The stuff he points out is simply what is and has been, and will be apparent to many users and pro reviewers. The jpg files do not do the RAW files justice. Period. All Pentax needs to do is stop making excuses for this, and offer an ACUTANCE/EDGE sharpening option in the menu by firmware. This will make it a non-issue. Too many people continue to notice this. Trying to email the Photography Review reviewer to tell him he is yet another of the reviewers, and hundreds of posters that are just wrong - won't stop their opinion. Again, this is specifically for the JPEG in-camera processing. As good as the RAW is, most owners will use the jpg, so this really matters - if Pentax will see this already.

The same goes for his comments on noise in shadows. Another issue brought up again and again for this camera. Pentax needs to take seriously the vocal request for a user defeatable chroma/luminance noise reduction option in firmware that will give owners that need the jpgs what they want - and other owners the option to turn it off. (The Nikon D80 with the same sensor & the Samsung GX-10 which has the same hardware have less noisy jpg in-camera processing, so it is possible) The problem with those competing cameras is that you can't turn OFF their noise reduction completely. This should be the difference in Pentax, rather than simply NOT offering the choice.

He also writes about the unappealing noise pattern in the shadows that many try to get Pentax to be aware of. We know it as Vertical Pattern Noise. Pentax, please solve it already and stop dismissing it. (This occurs in RAW as well)

These issues are solvable by offering menu choices in a firmware update (along with whatever invisible algorithm corrections are also needed). They will come up again and again as long as Pentax casually denies them. Its great that Chasseur de images liked the camera, but they simply are not the majority IF they were testing jpeg output. RAW is another story.

A final odd thing he noticed was purple fringing in the in-camera JPEG files. Normally a lens characteristic, he puts a side by side comparison with the identical K10D image from RAW that he converted, and it had NO purple fringing. How would the jpeg processing introduce purple fringing that isn't showing in RAW conversions using more sophisticated software?

PS Ben, You use RAW exclusively, so these issues (except VPN) haven't and may not ever affect you in particular. Therefore, you may not see how important this is, and that this new review is exactly why I sent you those emails a month ago - and fortunately your close ties to Pentax put that info where it should be. Its why Pentax needs to seriously refine the jpeg processing with these menu options in firmware, or this will keep coming up. Its obvious that many current and future possible owners are hoping for this.

Larry

Last edited by mutley; 03-02-2007 at 02:09 AM.
03-02-2007, 02:52 AM   #14
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Your Letter

QuoteOriginally posted by mutley Quote
The stuff he points out is simply what is and has been, and will be apparent to many users and pro reviewers. The jpg files do not do the RAW files justice. Period. All Pentax needs to do is stop making excuses for this, and offer an ACUTANCE/EDGE sharpening option in the menu by firmware. This will make it a non-issue. Too many people continue to notice this. Trying to email the Photography Review reviewer to tell him he is yet another of the reviewers, and hundreds of posters that are just wrong - won't stop their opinion. Again, this is specifically for the JPEG in-camera processing. As good as the RAW is, most owners will use the jpg, so this really matters - if Pentax will see this already.

The same goes for his comments on noise in shadows. Another issue brought up again and again for this camera. Pentax needs to take seriously the vocal request for a user defeatable chroma/luminance noise reduction option in firmware that will give owners that need the jpgs what they want - and other owners the option to turn it off. (The Nikon D80 with the same sensor & the Samsung GX-10 which has the same hardware have less noisy jpg in-camera processing, so it is possible) The problem with those competing cameras is that you can't turn OFF their noise reduction completely. This should be the difference in Pentax, rather than simply NOT offering the choice.

He also writes about the unappealing noise pattern in the shadows that many try to get Pentax to be aware of. We know it as Vertical Pattern Noise. Pentax, please solve it already and stop dismissing it. (This occurs in RAW as well)

These issues are solvable by offering menu choices in a firmware update (along with whatever invisible algorithm corrections are also needed). They will come up again and again as long as Pentax casually denies them. Its great that Chasseur de images liked the camera, but they simply are not the majority IF they were testing jpeg output. RAW is another story.

A final odd thing he noticed was purple fringing in the in-camera JPEG files. Normally a lens characteristic, he puts a side by side comparison with the identical K10D image from RAW that he converted, and it had NO purple fringing. How would the jpeg processing introduce purple fringing that isn't showing in RAW conversions using more sophisticated software?

PS Ben, You use RAW exclusively, so these issues (except VPN) haven't and may not ever affect you in particular. Therefore, you may not see how important this is, and that this new review is exactly why I sent you those emails a month ago - and fortunately your close ties to Pentax put that info where it should be. Its why Pentax needs to seriously refine the jpeg processing with these menu options in firmware, or this will keep coming up. Its obvious that many current and future possible owners are hoping for this.

Larry
Hello Larry;

May I suggest that you compile all of the concerns you have voiced here and send them off to either Pentax UK, USA or Japan. As I am also sending my critiques to Pentax France, it would be best served if we spread the info more evenly. Perhaps by doing so, we may see some results more quickly.

Best Wishes
Ben

Last edited by benjikan; 03-02-2007 at 04:25 AM.
03-02-2007, 04:10 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by trog100 Quote
we all know the kits lens will hold back the potential of any camera.. we would be foolish to kid ourselves otherwise..
This is largely the result of photographic pundits in the late 1980s who urged camera buyers to reject the standard 50mm lens offered by the manufacturer and go for a standard-range zoom instead. Gradually (by popular demand), the kit lens transformed from a prime, often of excellent quality, to a questionable zoom, aimed at having mass-market appeal.

In 1984 I bought a Pentax Super A, complete with its excellent "kit" 50mm KA f1.7. The next SLR I bought was the MZ-M in about 1996, with its pretty crappy 35-80mm KA f4-5.6. In my view the kit lens offered with the K10D is streets ahead of the latter, but the former is still a prized possession.

Simon
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