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01-24-2023, 05:48 PM   #1
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Decisions on a new (used) camera K-3, K-3 II, k-5 iis, or KP

Hoping this is not too rambling.
More or less a general thread since I don't feel this belongs in a camera specific section.

1st - I have a nice K-5 that i can say i love but I have never bonded with.
2nd - I have a choice of three cameras that are in great shape, two with super low shutter counts, one that has a bit higher number (but still low)
- K-3 with around 350 shutter counts that is priced a little less than $500, Just camera. charger, and batteries.
- K-3 with 811 shutter counts that is also priced just a little over $500 with shipping. comes with everything like new box and all extras.
- K-3 II for about 20,000 shutter count and a little of $700 price. It seems that a super low count K-3 II for a decent price.

I like that the K-3's are very low shutter count.....I did find a k-3 II silver body with 5,000 shutter counts and $750......but I just found out someone bought it out from under me

I wish I could have the pixel shift of the K-3 II and a pop up flash from the K-3.
Would a KP be a worthy contender with these cameras
Part of me is also thinking to upgrade to a K-5 IIs for some of the advantages I believe it has over the K-3

I am really on the fence and am trying to figure the flash or no flash but has pixel shifting
What are the pros and cons of the k-5 IIs, k-3, k-3 II, or KP.

it seems that there are so many opinions on them but I am having to search through multiple threads and it is quite confusing.

01-24-2023, 06:00 PM   #2
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Go to the camera comparison on this web site. Then look at what different features and capabilities are important to you and the type of photography you do. My advice is always to buy the newest technology that you can afford. I only have experience with the KP in this group, which I love.
01-24-2023, 06:00 PM   #3
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If you plan on eventually buying KAF4 lenses & want 100% compatibility with your camera, you'll need at least a K-3. The K-5 series can run the lenses, but they can't control their aperture. I have thought of getting a K-5IIs many times, but the KAF4 compatibility issue is a deal breaker with me.

I have a K-3II mainly for its GPS, slightly better SR, & slightly better AF.C performance. I don't have a K-3, but many reviewers have stated that they really haven't noticed much of a difference between the AF.C & SR of the K-3 & K-3II. I'm still more biased towards the K-3II, though.
01-24-2023, 06:07 PM - 2 Likes   #4
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I have owned a K-5, K-5iis, K-3 and KP.
I now own two KP bodies with battery grips.
The KP's super clean images at high ISO won me over. I shoot a lot of telephoto images in less than perfect light, the KP really shines here. If you don't need low noise above ISO 2000 or so, a used K-3 is a fantastic deal. 200,000 actuations shutter and really good ergonomics. Better pricing used too. The built in flashes on my Pentax bodies have saved the day many times, so I'd opt for the original K-3 over the K-3ii for that reason.

01-24-2023, 06:36 PM   #5
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KP for sure
01-24-2023, 06:43 PM - 1 Like   #6
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I bought the original k-3 over the k-3ii because pixel shift in the k-3ii is very limited (particularly at first) and the pop up flash is very helpful in fill lighting situations for me.

I later bought a KP and find the k-3 sits mostly unloved now.
01-24-2023, 07:02 PM   #7
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Why did you not bond with the K-5? Is it the feel of thebody or the images? If it is the images it could be the lenses that are not giving results to your liking...

I like my K-S2 (traded myK-3 for it because I didn't like the results from the sensor), and my K-S1 (I have two!). But the one that I bond with the most is my K200D. Go figure...

01-24-2023, 08:06 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by podboy3 Quote
I have a nice K-5 that i can say i love but I have never bonded with.
I wonder in what ways you have found the K-5 to be lacking?
01-24-2023, 08:09 PM - 1 Like   #9
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IMO the KP would be the way to go, as it has better high-ISO performance and greater versatility than the K-3 series, which is very much like a slightly larger K-5.

What lenses do you currently own, and what genres of photography are you interested in?
01-24-2023, 08:39 PM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by podboy3 Quote
Part of me is also thinking to upgrade to a K-5 IIs for some of the advantages I believe it has over the K-3
Well, I did upgrade to the K-5 IIs after the K-3 came, which I bought new during a 1/2 of original price closeout sale. I found it to have potential for greater fine detail in images over the output from the original K-5, no doubt due to the lack of AA filter, as well as better AF with some lenses. I passed over the K-3 series, as in some respects the K-5 IIs was still a bit better, especially in higher ISO performance. From what I saw, the improvements of any of the K-3 models were not enough to warrant my abandoning my K-5 IIs. Then finally came the K-3 III. Of course, its low light/high ISO performance is in a different league. However, I had already bought 2 silver KP bodies a couple of years before, along with a silver DA 20-40mm Ltd lens, as well as some other lenses. I fell in love with the KP! It has a couple of compromises with dual-use buttons where my K-5 IIs has dedicated controls, but in many other respects the KP is the best-performing camera I had owned, and it is the most unique for the age-old Pentax concept of exceptional high quality with compact design. It remans the perfect counterpart for the Limited lens concept, and it is the perfect counter-design for a DSLR against the high-end APS-C mirrorless crowd. Its AF was noticeably improved, and its low light/higher ISO performance is exceptional as well! Absolutely great imaging.

So for me, this left the main advantage of the quite expensive K-3 III to be in the realm of even faster AF and far better burst performance for action shooting. But this is not of particular interest for me. So, I decided to finally get into FF, taking advantage of some terrific deals from B&H and bought a K-1 II prepackaged with the very fine DFA 28-105mm DC WR instead! Since I already had some great FF lenses from my days of 35mm film shooting, this was something I'd had in mind for quite some time. The K-1 II system along with the KP for my primary APS-C use, has been an amazing combo!

All that said, I still do like my K-5 IIs for its excellent on-body controls layout, its still fine imaging, and using it with my power zoom lenses in APS-C format, as my KP does not include this feature.

Last edited by mikesbike; 01-24-2023 at 08:47 PM.
01-24-2023, 08:58 PM   #11
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KP is the only really different option unless you want to step up to the K3-III and stick with an APS-C Pentax.
01-24-2023, 11:32 PM   #12
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I don't know if this will be of any help but I bought a K-3II (with a relatively low shutter count) about 2 years ago to replace my K-7. I have to say that I rarely use Pixel Shift & I don't really miss the pop up flash.
01-25-2023, 12:39 AM - 1 Like   #13
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As far as value for money goes, the K3 looks like a good deal. For the best K mount performance under USD1000, get a KP.
01-25-2023, 12:54 AM   #14
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I have a K! and intend to add a K3iii to my kit. I had a K3ii, which I reluctantly parted with. If the K3iii is even better than the K3ii, then I want one.
01-25-2023, 02:18 AM   #15
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Same as others, I don't get what is it that you dislike about your K-5?
The answer would be a great help in deciding which way to go, otherwise we're just throwing ideas randomly.
Personnally I had a K-5 then a K-3 II and liked both. I can't deny the K-3 II was a step up in operation speed and MP count (and GPS and other perks), but when I look back my fondest memories are with the K-5. Probably wouldn't have switched if it hadn't been stolen.
But from your post, it's unclear if any of these options would bring you anything useful. Might be worth saving a little longer and getting something really different, such as K-3 III, K-1... Or other brand?
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