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02-19-2009, 11:58 PM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edward B. Quote
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.
Also loses the DOF preview (highly useful for manual exposure lenses), some focus points, and the ability to select the focus point. These may or may not be important to any given user.

02-20-2009, 12:56 AM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
Many of the more affordable lenses are older versions with outdated AF motors and IQ that is not up to current standards.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.
Well, here are a few that aren't too pricey (and I own them so can vouch for them):

35/2 -- does not have USM but autofocuses very quickly. Great optical performance, even wide open it's quite decent and from 2.8 onwards really really good. See them for $150-200 used. It's pretty darn small too, so makes for a GREAT walkaround "normal" for a crop body. Mine is pretty much permanently mounted to my 10D for when I want to go "light".

50/1.4 -- USM and a great performer. Fast fast AF, full time manual focus override, awesome sharpness. $250 or so used.

85/1.8 -- USM and the fastest AF I've ever seen. A lot of people prefer it over the far far more expensive 85/1.2. $250-300 used.

Then you have the 24, 28 (the 1.8 version is only $400 or so), 100 macro, 135 etc etc... there's a bunch and they aren't all that expensive.

Last edited by pingflood; 02-20-2009 at 05:32 AM.
02-20-2009, 06:31 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edward B. Quote
Has anyone used the K-M? Supposedly, the Auto Focus is quite a bit improved over the K200D.
Yes. Although not the K-M (that was a film SLR), but the K-m AF is really better, haven't had any AF issues so far in indoors low light. That was on of the main reasons for me to choose K-m instead of K200D.
02-20-2009, 12:05 PM   #34
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You compare the K200 with the XS not XSi.

Pentax (and Olympus) are noted for excellent yet modestly expensive lenses. Moreover, owing to in-body IS, you don't have to select between a "normal" and "IS-containing" lens at greater cost (and weight).

I mentioned Olympus because they are in some ways on the same track and I counsel you to look them over as well. But I have no intention of "pushing" you in either direction. What I did was to list the good points and bad. That includes things as far afield as availabilities and track record of brand-repair facilities. VERY important is to see how they all fit your hands, and maybe rule out one or more right then and there. Things like size, weight, placement of buttons, intuitiveness of the menuing system... these are some of the things you will want to take a close look at. In the end of course you will "bite the bullet" on some things because they constitute the lesser of two evils. Decide what features really matter to you, and which ones "aren't all that bad". Use this "fudge factor" on your list of features and characteristics of each camera. Unlike Olympus (and Canon and Nikon), Pentax simply and easily accepts and utilizes legacy K-mount lenses. (Most or maybe all can handle M42 lenses via an adapter)

As to Canon and Nikon, I have owned SLRs of both makes over the years, and I find them excellent, though that was in the days of film and no luxury of IS.

QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
Hi,

I just bought my first dSLR a couple months ago, and I ended up going with a Canon Rebel XS. I considered the Pentax K200D, and I liked almost everything about it except how the image quality compared to Canon. That said, I'm not completely satisfied for a couple reasons, and I suspect these will be no surprise to Pentax users: 1) the build quality and hand grip don't really inspire much confidence... at first I thought I could get past this, but it has become more of an annoyance with time. 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).

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 would probably feel comfortable sticking with it. The image quality and high ISO performance are excellent, and I like the hard button access to things like ISO. The control layout in general is very satisfactory for me. Obviously, though, my reservations are strong enough to make me contemplate jumping ship. Furthermore, my current investment in Canon lenses is negligible.

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.


02-20-2009, 12:46 PM   #35
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Thanks. I've also been eyeing Olympus' cameras, mostly for the in-body stabilization and the excellent zoom lenses. They're noticibly lacking shorter primes though (except for the 25mm pancake, which apparently has average optical quality). I've noticed that their high ISO performance isn't quite up to speed with Pentax, but it looks like the new sensor for the E-30 may improve things a bit.
02-20-2009, 12:59 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by pingflood Quote
Well, here are a few that aren't too pricey (and I own them so can vouch for them):

35/2 -- does not have USM but autofocuses very quickly. Great optical performance, even wide open it's quite decent and from 2.8 onwards really really good. See them for $150-200 used. It's pretty darn small too, so makes for a GREAT walkaround "normal" for a crop body. Mine is pretty much permanently mounted to my 10D for when I want to go "light".

50/1.4 -- USM and a great performer. Fast fast AF, full time manual focus override, awesome sharpness. $250 or so used.

85/1.8 -- USM and the fastest AF I've ever seen. A lot of people prefer it over the far far more expensive 85/1.2. $250-300 used.

Then you have the 24, 28 (the 1.8 version is only $400 or so), 100 macro, 135 etc etc... there's a bunch and they aren't all that expensive.
Yes, I've looked at the 35mm f/2, which is roughly the focal length I would want for a "general purpose" prime. From the reviews I've seen it appears to be a fairly average optical perfomer (with border sharpness being the downside), but it's nice to know that you've had a good experience with it. I have the 50mm f/1.8 - I guess it's the same AF motor?

I think I'll be sitting tight with what I have for the next 6 months or so to see what the newer models look like. If Canon can manage to impress me enough, there's still a chance I'll stick with them. Otherwise my general feeling is that there are other options out there that would better suit me.
02-20-2009, 01:12 PM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxmz Quote
Canon doesn't make a long lens with built in IS.
Um, a quick look at Adorama shows this to be quite incorrect.
02-20-2009, 01:20 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxmz Quote
I can't speak for other Canon bodies but I must say that the D50 is just as well built as the Pentax K20D.
Minus the weathersealing, of course.

02-20-2009, 01:38 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
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.

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.
I am fairly interested in your experience with the K200D vs. K20D. Holding them in my hands I preferred the K200D, as it's lighter and a bit less chunky. That said, the external controls of the K20D are pretty attractive, and I think you get more customization in general, right? If I were to go in the smaller direction I'm guessing I would wait for a K300D with the same sensor as the K20D, since I prefer the K20D output based on all the photos I've seen. Could you give me more pros and cons of each based on your experience?
02-20-2009, 04:54 PM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by gwach Quote
Thanks. I've also been eyeing Olympus' cameras, mostly for the in-body stabilization and the excellent zoom lenses. They're noticibly lacking shorter primes though (except for the 25mm pancake, which apparently has average optical quality). I've noticed that their high ISO performance isn't quite up to speed with Pentax, but it looks like the new sensor for the E-30 may improve things a bit.
As far as noise is concerned, it seems that the 4/3 format is going to always put them at an advantage compared to APS-C (just as APS-C is at a disadvantage compared to FF).
02-20-2009, 07:13 PM   #41
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True, but they do seem to do a decent job with NR. One of the big things that turned me off to them in the past was the poor dynamic range. Things went from black to white with little gradations on between.
02-20-2009, 11:27 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by gnaztee Quote
Um, a quick look at Adorama shows this to be quite incorrect.
Well that is a good example of why one should do their own research. I was recently in a camera store, asking about long lenses with IS. They didn't have any and the sales person explained that Canon doesn't make any lens longer than 300mm with IS built in. It looks like I didn't do my homework and you're right.

FYI, Here is an interesting article the compares in-camera SR to in-lens IS:
Image Stabilization - Lens vs. Body
02-20-2009, 11:29 PM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by gnaztee Quote
Minus the weathersealing, of course.
No, this time that is not true. The 50D does have weather sealing. Upon visual inspection, just as much as the K20D. To what extent they compare in real-wet conditions, let me just say I wouldn't want to test either camera.
02-21-2009, 12:23 AM   #44
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I tried to find more info about this before I put that comment up, and all I could find is that the 50D has more sealing than previous models, but didn't seem as comprehensive as the K20D's sealing. Since you have the camera and the manual, I will of course defer to you on this one!
02-21-2009, 12:45 AM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by gnaztee Quote
I tried to find more info about this before I put that comment up, and all I could find is that the 50D has more sealing than previous models, but didn't seem as comprehensive as the K20D's sealing. Since you have the camera and the manual, I will of course defer to you on this one!
I find it rather humorous how many K20D owners are 'bragging' about the weather sealing, but seriously, who in their right mind is going to test their camera? I'm sure not! I suppose it is nice to think about and compare... but...

One thing I understand about working in harsh (and/or ridiculously juicy) conditions... whether it is sand, water, or [damn it] grapefruit juice, even a small amount it will find its way in and damage your equipment!
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