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01-06-2020, 12:59 PM   #1
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Embarking on an experiment (K3 II vs. GR III)

I have not been shooting a lot of street photography lately, live in NYC, and recently started a new client-facing job where I dress up daily and so can't really have my K1 or K3 II dangling off my shoulder all the time.

I went down a rabbit hole of consideration around getting a GR III paid for by the sale of my somewhat limited but valuable APC SLR and lenses. (The K1 stays as my primary birding, event, and "serious" camera).

BUT I hate the idea of selling some pretty solid equipment and consolidating down to a camera with a single 28mm lens (plus a converter to get down to 21mm).

So after playing with a GR III in B&H (such a nice small camera) and then exploring camera bags, I have decided to replace my backpack with an ONA Prince Camera bag to be used as my work/camera bag for the next 30 days. Cost $200.

I am going to mount my 21mm 3.2 on my K3 II, attach my PEAK Hand Strap, and place it in the new bag with all my work stuff (including a 12" MacBook). I may also put a few other primes in the bag - but they MUST be small primes, like my 77mm 1.8 and 40mm 2.8 pancake.

The experiment is to shoot street with the K3 II every day for 1 month by keeping the camera readily available in my bag. I MUST shoot at least 10 shots daily with a goal of at least 1 keeper. I have already experimented with the motion to pull the camera out of the bag and it rivals the speed of puling a GR III from my pocket.

I also will update this thread with my progress on a regular basis (and hopefully with some decent shots).

I am open to input, but the goal is to determine if a K3 II with some sweet little primes can rival the raw size advantage of a GR III.

01-06-2020, 01:49 PM   #2
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Sounds like a plan, good luck with it, always good to have direction
01-06-2020, 01:49 PM   #3
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Good luck with the experiment!
I have tried to move away from the DSLR as a travel camera but I don't like the feel & experience of using a non DSLR body. The K3II and most of the Pentax body's are so small and compact they are easy to pack. With use of the LTD lenses you end up with a Fantasticks combo. I'm going to add a 20-40 LTD to my collection which will be my main lens (i love the fact that the 20-40 Ltd is WR & still compact) and coupled with my 70 LTD I will have a great travel setup. (Only down side is neither of the lenses are that fast)

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01-06-2020, 01:49 PM   #4
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Sounds like fun. Good luck and keep us updated!

01-06-2020, 02:02 PM   #5
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I handled a GRIII in store recently and it's a real temptation.

If you are intent on street, I would think the hassle of the K-3ii would limit some shots when the GRIII would walk it so you may just end up there but with a solid reason from your experience. Good luck and keep us posted!.
01-06-2020, 02:05 PM   #6
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The grIII surely is tempting. Kind of like the Leica with 35mm I wanted as a child.
01-06-2020, 02:32 PM - 1 Like   #7
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I know NYC is special, but 1 keeper daily is a lot, good luck!
01-06-2020, 02:46 PM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by hypermodern Quote
I know NYC is special, but 1 keeper daily is a lot, good luck!
Totally agree that 1 keeper daily is a lot.... trying to set the bar higher than total crappy shots. I am defining keeper pretty low for the exercise! Let's hope for one "framable" in the month!!!

---------- Post added 01-06-20 at 04:48 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by WorksAsIntended Quote
The grIII surely is tempting. Kind of like the Leica with 35mm I wanted as a child.
The Leica Q and Q2 made my list in the research I did in the past few days. Actually spoke with a Sales Rep at B&H about his Q today - which he loves for the B&W mood (or something like that.)

BUT at $3k to $6k for a single-lens camera that is almost as big as my K3 - not quite ready to bite that bullet!

01-06-2020, 03:00 PM   #9
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Good luck !!!

I was planning to get the gr3 for street photos but the plan is on hold as i got a 21mm to pair with my KP.
01-06-2020, 03:26 PM - 1 Like   #10
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Sounds like a plan
If only we had streets where I live..

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01-06-2020, 03:56 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Varunvg85 Quote
Good luck !!!

I was planning to get the gr3 for street photos but the plan is on hold as i got a 21mm to pair with my KP.
I am also coveting the 15mm or the 20-40 as posted above.

Keep me looped into how you are doing with your combo!
01-06-2020, 04:03 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by jcsnyc Quote
I am also coveting the 15mm or the 20-40 as posted above.

Keep me looped into how you are doing with your combo!
The KP plus 21 mm combo is absolutely fine for 80% of my shoots. But some times i miss the versatility of 20 40 zoom. Even though I am more than satisfied with my 21mm.
01-06-2020, 05:26 PM - 1 Like   #13
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Get the GR, you'll never ever regret the purchase.
I've a Kp which is smaller than K-3 plus both 15mm ltd and 20-40 ltd; a friend of mine borrowed his GR ii for testing it over a weekend.

The handling and inconspicuousness of the GR plays on another different level, is a street photo monster and the best purpose-designed camera I've ever tested. One handed operation is where it shines, a dsrl or milc can't even come close.
People don't notice you or don't bother because they think you're shooting an old Sony cybershot/Nikon coolpix kind of camera. Try that with a dslr.....

The image quality is amazing, the lens sharpness is phenomenal! A sample of the quick pics I did (jpg stooc, didn't mess with my friend's settings)




Living as you do in NY, it would be a no brainer for me. I'm planning to visit your city in june and buying the GR is the first thing on my list.
01-06-2020, 05:45 PM   #14
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I have a K3ii and a GR III. I take street shots almost daily on my commute through Boston, except when I bike instead of walk+subway. Before getting the GR, I had the 15, 21, 40 limited primes for street, especially using the 21 and 15 (I also have the da 70, but I use it for concerts and for me it's way too long for street). I got the GR with a preorder in March, knowing I may sell the limited primes. I sold in the fall the 15 and 21, keeping the 40 for other stuff. I'm not shy for people to see me taking street photos, it's just that the tiny and silent GR enables shots that I simply can't get with an slr/dslr. With either setup I use zone focusing and burst shooting, the one thing I'm missing from the k3ii is the burst speed.


Good luck with your experiment! If you want to get a sense for how it is to use a GR camera for less than the cost of a new GR III, you could try an older GR Digital, I have one too, and they're remarkably similar in use if you can work within their respective technical limitations (much stricter iso and cropping limits on 10+ year old cameras with tiny sensors ).

Last edited by aaacb; 01-06-2020 at 05:51 PM.
01-06-2020, 06:30 PM   #15
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I enjoyed using the DA 40 XS on my K-5, very compact and a good focal length for most occasions.
I am looking forward to the results of your experiment
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