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02-19-2009, 12:49 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by HermanLee Quote
Hi Gwach,

First of all, welcome back to Pentax community!

I don't have Canon/Nikon SLR but I handled some of my friend's Canon 30D for a while when they asked me to help taking pictures of some events using their camera.
I also played around a little bit with D200.

One thing that I know from that experience is, none of them can afford a good lens after their body purchase.
Yes, they all have the same complaint like you. They thought it's cool to have a Canon/Nikon but now they all can't afford to buy good glasses.
Canon friend only has some lenses that are not fix aperture. Nikon friend only has 18-200mm.
Because they already spent more than $2000 for that.
With all due respect, I think you are perpetuating the myth of Canon and Nikon being significantly more expensive than Pentax (when comparing Apples to Apples). It is true that all the other manufacturers sell more expensive models but these cameras are not even in the same class as the K20D, so making such comparisons are pointless.

True or False:
The newest, recently available Canon 50D is selling for less than the Pentax K20D (back in Jan. 2008)? Answer is True.

Strictly comparing prices (not features), Nikon actually sells the least expensive DSLR (D40 - one of the best values available now), followed by several models of Olympus, Canon, and Sony.

The inability to afford good lenses has little or nothing to do with the camera body one chooses. The lenses one purchases has much more to do with the skill, knowledge, spending power, and requirements of the individual.

This is based on my own experience, not on actual statistics, but I do suspect that anyone who is willing to purchase a top of the line camera ($1400 or more, for example), is going to be able to afford good quality lenses.


Last edited by pentaxmz; 02-19-2009 at 02:00 PM.
02-19-2009, 01:38 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
2) More importantly, though, I'm just not that happy with the Canon lens selection. Not wanting to spend $1000+ on pro lenses, I'm finding few options that appeal to me. This is kind of ironic given how many lenses Canon makes. Looking at other companies' lenses, I found the Pentax primes particularly attractive, so I'm back to thinking about switching to Pentax sometime in the next year. I'm still hesitant about the K200D, but I'm quite impressed by the K20D output, and I'm confident I would not see a loss in image quality with that camera (or a future K*00D with the same sensor).
Whether you stay with Canon or switch to Pentax, good lenses are similarly expensive on either camera. Certainly, if image stabilization is important to you, Pentax has the edge. An equivalent quality lens for Canon will cost more because of the additional IS electronics. However, good quality long lenses of similar class are about the same price because Canon doesn't make a long lens with built in IS.

Also, you cannot compare your current Canon Rebel XS to the Pentax K20D because they are not quite in the same class (at least I don't think so). A fairer comparison is the Canon D50 to the K20D. Some might argue this.... I really don't know for fact because Canon has so many models, and I can't keep track.

QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
I must say that there are lots of things I genuinely like about my Canon, and were it not for the lens issue (and the lack of internal stabilization)
I know someone at Canon who has revealed to me [off the record] that there are a lot of board room discussions about introducing in body SR (like the Pentax). They secretly admit that the Pentax technology is desirable. In lens image stabilization is somewhat more effective but there are too many caveats (heavier, more complex and expensive lens, limited to shorter focal length lenses). Apparently there is on going R+D into this, but they must do it in a manner that doesn't infringe on Pentax's patents (or are they pending... not sure).

However, they don't have it now, so you must ask yourself how important is such a feature.

QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
Furthermore, my current investment in Canon lenses is negligible.
..and the perfect time to decide. It can be a tough decision if you don't have specialized requirements. But really, it doesn't matter that much! Whether you choose Pentax, Canon, Nikon, Sony (formally Minolta technology), Olympus, and even Panasonic (I was surprised to see that they have DSLRs too!), etc.... they are all respectable cameras and all capable of taking great photos in the right hands.

I would suggest you list out all your most important needs and expectations, the type of photography you enjoy... and share this list with us, and your local camera dealer (someone who sells all brands).

QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
That said, I'm curious to hear the experiences of others who have switched from Canon (or Nikon, for that matter) to Pentax or have plenty of experience with both systems.
I use both (now). Unfortunately, a lot of forum members think of me as a Pentax basher, but that's because they seem to miss the good things I say about the K20D. I have even stated that, except for four problems, the K20D is nearly the perfect [under $2000] DSLR.

I also have a borrowed Canon D50, and it is a wonderful camera. For now, there is nothing that the K20D has that I would miss on the D50. Whether or not I switch to Canon (an expensive proposition considering my investment in PK lenses), really depends on what Pentax does in the next year (I can wait).

There are some Pentax K20D exclusives (when in comparison to the D50) such as SR (Shake Reduction), possibly better weather sealing (D50 has it as well, but it's not clear if one is better than the other and I am not about to test either camera ), I am not sure what else yet... but feel free to ask specific questions about either camera.
02-19-2009, 01:54 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxmz Quote
. . .

Also, you cannot compare your current Canon Rebel XS to the Pentax K20D because they are not quite in the same class (at least I don't think so). A fairer comparison is the Canon D50 to the K20D. Some might argue this.... I really don't know for fact because Canon has so many models, and I can't keep track.






. . .

Actually, the OP was comparing ti to the K200D as were the replies.
02-19-2009, 01:55 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edward B. Quote
....
Of course, I guess I could always use manual focus. Although I read on some places that you can't visually tell if the image is focused when using manual? Is this right?
.....
On any auto focus capable camera I have ever owned (right back to the Pentax MZ-S), the camera will give you both a visual and audible confirmation of correct focus. That is, of course, if the camera can electronically determine focus. Otherwise, visual inspection is difficult without a split prism focusing screen and/or a focusing magnifier attachment. Both of which, one may add to a K20D.

02-19-2009, 01:59 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
Actually, the OP was comparing ti to the K200D as were the replies.
I guess you missed this sentence:

QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
I'm still hesitant about the K200D, but I'm quite impressed by the K20D output, and I'm confident I would not see a loss in image quality with that camera (or a future K*00D with the same sensor).
02-19-2009, 02:00 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
That said, I'm curious to hear the experiences of others who have switched from Canon (or Nikon, for that matter) to Pentax or have plenty of experience with both systems. I'm not interested in Canon/Nikon bashing; I think there is plenty to like about those systems, though probably moreso for professionals who can afford the expensive pro lenses. I'm more interested in the particulars of your transition... things you find especially enjoyable about Pentax, or things you miss about Canon.

Your thoughts are very much appreciated.
Having gone the other way, I can offer the following:
  • For consumer cameras, Pentax build quality is above and beyond -- the K10D/K20D bodies are better than anything short of a Canon/Nikon pro body
  • Image quality, Pentax again rules the roost when it comes to bang for the buck -- the K20D in particular cranks out some wonderful results
  • Pentax AF is not the best. Wouldn't sweat it for most shots, but when it comes to tracking fast moving subjects give me a Canon any day (including my ancient 10D with focus tracks better than a K20D)
  • The Pentax DA Limited glass is without equal for the money in any system.
  • For general shooting I wouldn't trade a K20D for anything less than a 1-series Canon or a Nikon D3/D700. For sports/birds I would give the nod to a 40D or D300 without a doubt
  • The only cameras I'd consider better than a K20D in all aspects are the 1Ds2 and 1Ds3 -- neither which are even remotely in the same price range as the Pentax.
02-19-2009, 02:05 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxmz Quote
I guess you missed this sentence:
I didn't miss that sentence but exactly where does it say the OP was comparing it to the Rebel to the K20d?

This sentence is what most are responding to taking into account the reference to the k20d.

QuoteQuote:
I considered the Pentax K200D, and I liked almost everything about it except how the image quality compared to Canon.
Back when I purchased the K200d, I had considered the Rebel since of have a couple of Canon macro lenses, but opted for the Pentax because I liked the output better and the build better as well as the fact I could use my "Legacy" glass.

The K20d is a different ball game. There are things I like about the k200d however, especially the size. Build quality are equal with the differences being with the ccd vs. cmos sensors etc.
02-19-2009, 02:26 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by pingflood Quote
Having gone the other way, I can offer the following:
[LIST][*]For consumer cameras, Pentax build quality is above and beyond -- the K10D/K20D bodies are better than anything short of a Canon/Nikon pro body
I can't speak for other Canon bodies but I must say that the D50 is just as well built as the Pentax K20D. Both are extremely solid cameras. Aside from some particularly bad cameras in the 90's, Pentax has always excelled in camera built. I still believe that the Pentax MZ-S was one of the best semi-pro 35mm cameras ever built.

My sister has one of the low end Rebels and it does feel cheap. But Canon and Nikon are making a killing in this low-end market so you can't blame them for building the plastic cameras.

Are the lower end Pentax models really built better than the equivalent Canon and Nikons? Besides my K20D, I have only owned the *ist D but it too was a mostly plastic body.

QuoteOriginally posted by pingflood Quote
[*] The Pentax DA Limited glass is without equal for the money in any system.
Pentax DA limited glass is indeed, very good but it is debatable that it is actually better than the equivalent glass of other manufactures.

02-19-2009, 03:25 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by kenyee Quote
This is pretty vague. What exact lenses are you looking for?
What I'm looking for are lenses that will allow the sensor to shine across the frame. In Canon world, this basically narrows it down to a few relatively long primes (on APS-C) (50mm f/1.4, 60mm f/2.8, 85mm f/1.8, 100mm f/2.8, etc) and the pro zooms. There's nothing inherently wrong with this, but you have to get the zooms if you want stabilization, and the primes are fairly large with all the internal motors.

I have to say I do enjoy shooting primes. I used a very old Minolta 35mm SLR for a couple years along with a 50mm f/1.7, and I loved the pictures I got with it. I love being able to shoot with available light, and I found that focal length to be ideal. I like the small size of the lens and the old-school build quality, thus my attraction to the Pentax limited lenses.
02-19-2009, 03:34 PM   #25
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Pentax's primes are why I chose the system ... they can be very satisfying. An FA31 is a good approximation of your old 50mm f/1.7, and generally does not disappoint.
02-19-2009, 03:40 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edward B. Quote
I'm in a similar situation, kinda.

I posted on here a while back about the qualities of the XSi compared to the K200D. If you go back a few pages, you'll find it. The thread was closed for further comments, but it might help you out.

I used to shoot with an older Rebel and have used an old manual Pentax for black and white.

I ended up buying the K200D because it felt a lot better in my hands, and I liked the cleaner layout (although I'd rather have an ISO button than a RAW), and I like the use of AA batteries.

But...

I'm an indecisive sob.

The camera arrived a few days ago, but I haven't even shot with it because I've been second guessing my decision based on the performance of the autofocus.

I have about a week or so left where I can return the camera for a refund.

I'm just using this for a hobby, but I'm interested in taking sports pictures, specifically high school sports and professional wrestling.

I have scoured the Internet and have been unable to find a lot of examples of good action shots taken by the K200D. I've found a lot taken by the XSi. I'm sure some of this has to do with the proliferation of the XSi, but still.

From the samples I've seen, the ISO quality isn't a huge factor. I've seen some pretty good shots from the K200D using 1600.

Of course, I guess I could always use manual focus. Although I read on some places that you can't visually tell if the image is focused when using manual? Is this right? And I also read that by using a flash, the autofocus will improve significantly as the flash may emit an infrared beam of some sort to help with focus. Is this right?

As you can tell, even though I've used SLRs, I'm still kinda ignorant.

Hopefully, someone with some brains will come along and add something useful.
I can relate to your indecisiveness. However, if you're shooting sports, your decision is undeniably different from mine. I have little intention of shooting much action.

I guess you'll be interested in fps, number of frames (not a huge strength of the K200D), quick AF, high ISO performance.

It is difficult to manual focus quickly and accurately with the viewfinder. There are accessories available to help with this, but in general you may have some trouble getting sharp photos trying to MF. If I were you I would be concerned about AF speed and accuracy. And if you weren't aware, there seem to be a fair number of complaints about the XSi AF accuracy. I have found my XS to be good in this respect, though I do have problems with the 50mm f/1.8 at max. aperture (this is a lens issue).

Don't doubt yourself too much. You may have to use a camera for a while before you can be a good judge of what you need best. I wouldn't be as informed as I am now if I hadn't pulled the trigger on my XS. I don't regret it; I see it as a stepping stone and a learning experience. That said, you need to make a best guess as to what will best suit you.
02-19-2009, 03:53 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by dylansalt Quote
I thought IQ was the most important feature of any camera/lens combo?

You stated that your Canon is superior in IQ (yet you didn't say in which way) to the Pentax - so why change?

Every camera has it's quirks

Dylan
The operative phrase here is "camera/lens combo". I'm fine with the camera, but find the lenses to be lacking. Canon hasn't committed to it's EF-S (APS-C) lens system like other manufacturers. Therefore, besides an excellent prime (60mm macro) and an overpriced zoom (17-55mm f/2.8) you have to look at the EF (full frame) lenses for quality glass. Many of the more affordable lenses are older versions with outdated AF motors and IQ that is not up to current standards. I'm sure the pro lenses are great but I'm just not going to put down that kind of money for a big, heavy lens with FF-oriented focal lengths. It's obvious to me that Canon isn't playing to consumers like me; they're playing to those who want cheap zooms or pro lenses.
02-19-2009, 04:04 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
What I'm looking for are lenses that will allow the sensor to shine across the frame. In Canon world, this basically narrows it down to a few relatively long primes (on APS-C) (50mm f/1.4, 60mm f/2.8, 85mm f/1.8, 100mm f/2.8, etc) and the pro zooms.
Given what you said, I thought you were cost constrained more than that, so that's why I mentioned those two lenses in particular.
The XSi IMHO doesn't have a sensor capable of taxing a good lens, unlike the K20D's sensor which shows the resolution of a lens relatively easily.
Besides the two lenses I mentioned, there are also 3rd party lenses might meet your needs...e.g., the Sigma 30/1.4 and the Tamron 28-75/2.8. Though these might be slower than a Canon lens, they are by no means unsharp...

Not trying to dissuade you, but your responses to these suggestions would help us make better suggestions...

If you like shooting primes however, Pentax land is where you'd be happiest, but if high speed sports are your thing, there are better tools (I emphasize better, not to say that it's impossible w/ Pentax gear...just not as simple as blasting away w/ predictive AF in other brands )...
02-19-2009, 04:22 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
I considered the Pentax K200D, and I liked almost everything about it except how the image quality compared to Canon.
In that case you're going to love Pentax, since the image quality actually kicks ass. Not sure why your initial experience was off-base but you are in for a pleasant surprise!
02-19-2009, 08:02 PM   #30
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Has anyone used the K-M? Supposedly, the Auto Focus is quite a bit improved over the K200D. It still uses the AA batteries (which I like) and seems to be pretty much the same camera except it loses weather sealing.
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