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08-27-2009, 09:34 AM   #1
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*ist DS or K200D?

Has anyone compared *ist DS and K200D side-by-side on Viewfinder brightness and portability, without considering price or over-all value?

I had a very nice *ist DS that I sold to another forum member recently. It was my walk-around camera and followed me almost everywhere. I now miss it enough to want a replacement but I am also considering K200D for its weather-resistance features, SR and improved sensor.

How does K200D's viewfinder compare to *ist DS's?

As far as portability goes, here are the specs (in mm and grams) and I don't think there's too much of a difference, although I'd like to hear from those who've handled them both.

(Camera, Width, Height, Depth, Weight)
DS - 125, 92.5, 66, 505
K200D - 133.5, 95, 74, 630

Thanks much!

08-27-2009, 11:34 AM   #2
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I upgraded from the DS to the k200D, and had both for a while. The K200D as so far superior in all ways, the slight difference in viewfinder quality was dwarfed. Put an O-ME53 magnifier on the k200D and you'd be hard-pressed to tell the difference, at least with any lens you'd be inclined to want to manual focus in the first place (the kit lens is noticeable dimmer). The K200D is indeed somewhat bigger and heavier, but nowhere near as big a difference s from either of these to a K10D or K20D. And the K200D has a very nice deep grip that I find quite conducive to holding with one hand.

However, if your *only* criteria is viewfinder brightness and portability, there is no question the DS wins on both counts. The specs tell the story just about as you'd expect. The weight difference seems more significant than it does when you consider that after you load it with batteries and mount a lens, it's not so noticeable.
08-27-2009, 12:23 PM   #3
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Thanks for the information. My main criteria is portability, which I think the K200D fits quite well with its weather sealing and relatively smaller size, etc. I had heard some concerns about K200D's viewfinder but since I can always use my MF lenses on K20D, which is my main camera, I should be okay. Also, I will look into the viewfinder magnifier.

Thanks again!
08-28-2009, 06:24 AM   #4
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The istDS has a few features not available on newer models, and I like the smaller size and lighter weight. The Pentaprism and true TTL flash are a plus, but lacking the stabilization, higher-pixel sensor, and larger LCD monitor are a minus.

The K200D just seems larger and heavier.

08-28-2009, 03:22 PM   #5
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I just wished that the K200D was my DS.
Pentax Missed a trick (probably due to cost) and not incorporate the sensor sealing and SR of the K200D in the DS body.
The two biggest advantages of the DS were size and pentaprism.
I know I have both the K10D and K20D, but at times they are too big to carry (travelling abroad for instance) so I wished that Pentax made the K200D as a DS but with its advantages.

Maybe the K-m replacement (a great size for travel) will have the Pentaprism instead of pentamirror, full 11 point AF and sealing. Maybe even with the sensor of the K20D/K-7. Then I would have a true replacement for my DS. In the meantime, I will keep hold of my DS, even though it is now "old" as far as modern IQ processing.
08-28-2009, 05:23 PM   #6
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I really sincerely doubt it would be possible to make a camera with a pentaprism and sealing and still have it be the size of the K-m, or with SR and sealing and still be the size of the DS).
08-28-2009, 08:36 PM   #7
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I have in hand a DS, a K200 and a K200 with O-ME53 magnifier and a split image view finder. I often use older MF lenses.

In a side-by-side comparison, I prefer the DS view finder but it's really only noticeable to me in a comparison. (One day I may put one of the K200 split image screens in the DS and I'm sure that would be even mo' bedda.)

The DS is a delight to carry with a small prime and plays well with TTL strobes. It's the M-body of the DSLR class.

I've converted a coupl'a K100s into K200s but I just couldn't bring myself to roll over on the DS. But for all around satisfaction I'd have to go with the K200 with accessory VF stuff for SR and 10MPs sensor if nothing else.


08-28-2009, 08:56 PM   #8
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Have both. DS is packed away, K200 in use.
There really is no comparison, the K200 is a superior tool. Not that the DS is "bad", not at all, the K200 is simply better.

08-28-2009, 10:11 PM   #9
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Even though I like my K20D, my gripe is that I've been taking far fewer photos with it since the DS got shipped. I took the DS along more simply because of its size and as a result, shot more. Like most things, I know I can't get better at this thing unless I shoot more. But now the DS is gone, I also want to upgrade.

Mallee is right, I should've kept the DS and got a K200D also. Instead I got MORE redundant glass (duh), which sees not much light because my K20D doesn't like to go out.

Anyone up for trading their DS and K200D for my K20D plus something else?
08-29-2009, 06:29 AM   #10
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I'm one of those fortunate recipients of most shooter's preference for the newer models. I shoot exclusively with M42 screwmount Takumars & early P/K manual Pentax glass primes. Consequently, the portability & Pentaprism view finder are important factors to me. The larger models with their huge autofocus zooms seem unwieldy & awkward to me..... mine is an ergonomic delight. Most of the more advanced focusing & metering features of the newer models mean nothing to me, as I focus manually & meter with separate hand held meters. Even the SR doesn't really entice me..... I've gotten by without it for four decades. It would be nice to have a few more megapixels for highly cropped shots, but that's relatively few shots. I just picked up a backup body in mint condition for $177..... one of the advantages of shooting with "old, outdated technology". The only model that has enticed me to move up is the new, smaller K7, which I will probably do in a year or so when the price drops to a more feasible level.
08-29-2009, 07:21 PM   #11
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Its DS again, for now.

I was seriously considering a K200D but pulled the trigger on a *ist DS that showed up in the Marketplace. And soon afterward, also paid for a DA 40mm f2.8.

I am hoping these two should make a very portable walk-around combination. I still hope to get a K200D down the road and use it with the DA40.
08-29-2009, 09:46 PM   #12
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I was going back and forth between the K2000 and K200D as a "compact camera" that I could put the DA 40 Pancake on and use as a walking-around camera when I didn't want the weight and bulk of the K20D.

Since I wasn't sure I was really going to like dropping down from the K20D, and figured light as possible was the goal, I went with the least expensive option, the K2000. I think the viewfinder is supposed to be the same as that of the K200D. You just don't get the weather sealing and a few other features.

I've only had it for a day and a half, and have only used it with the DA 40. So far I'm happy. With lithium batteries it's pretty light, but still feels solid.
08-29-2009, 10:51 PM   #13
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Isn't the *ist DS now a dinosaur compared to the K200D???
08-30-2009, 08:50 AM   #14
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Perhaps in age, but not so in size or weight.
08-30-2009, 09:42 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
I really sincerely doubt it would be possible to make a camera ....... with SR and sealing and still be the size of the DS).
The K-7 almost makes it

K-7 130.5 mm (W) 96.5 mm (H) 72.5 mm
DS 125 x 93 x 66 mm

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