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01-26-2010, 03:37 AM   #1
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Upgrade from *ist DS?

Hi all,
(If you don't want to read the entire post, you can skip to my questions at the end )

I've decided to upgrade my old DS soon and am currently considering the options, but I think I need some help here. The DS has been great and still is, but I often feel that it could do better indoors in medium/low light. That is both in high ISO noise and in faster AF, plus I think the SR will really help as well. As I'm about to have my first kid in two months time, I want to upgrade fairly soon and not wait for the next camera model.

I would really like video (not that I need it, mostly for playing around) and LV. That means my choices are limited to the K-x and K-7. I have gone back and forth between these for a while now, but am still indecisive. I pre-ordered the K-7 when it came out, but cancelled it and bought a house instead When the K-x came out I was set on getting one. But now, the price of the K-7 has dropped quite a bit and I could possibly stretch my budget to buy one.

So the pros for me are, for K-x:
- Superior high ISO noise (important)
- Lower price (big factor)

My pros for K-7:
- Larger VF (big deal)
- Better AF-C
- Better built
- WR (not that important)
- Dual wheels (can live without this)
- AF-C switch
- Remote control socket (meaning I don't have to buy new remote)
- Better LCD (not a huge deal)

Other differences I don't really care too much about:
- Horizon correction
- CA correction
- Mic connection
- AF lamp
- AF points in VF
- Shutter differences
- Batteries

In other words, I want the K-7, but is it worth giving up high ISO performance and a few hundred $$? I guess that is something I have to decide myself, so my actual questions are:


How big difference is there really in ISO noise between K-x and K-7? One stop?

I shoot RAW and PP in Lightroom, can the K-7 noise be removed to an acceptable level in Lightroom or do I need a specific noise removal app/plugin to do this?

Will the K-7 be an improvement in high ISO noise compared to my *ist DS (comparing same sizes, not talking about 100% crops)? How much difference? (with the DS I use ISO 800 often, 1600 rarely and never 3200)

Are there any other notable differences between the K-x and K-7 that I have missed?

01-26-2010, 02:30 PM   #2
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You make it sound like a night-and-day difference in ISO performance betwene the 2 cameras. It isn't. Some people have a Kx with amazing low-light performance, others have just acceptable results. Same with the K-7, some people get one that performs flawlessly in low light, others get no more than the expected performance. In all honesty, I find nothing wrong wih my K-7's low light performance. Even at 800 or 1600 ISO, I get great results. It's only when I start to pixel-peep that the noise becomes apparent.
01-26-2010, 06:26 PM   #3
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Realistically, the difference between great and bad high ISO performance has more to do with the nature of the scene, exposure, and processing used than any variation between two samples of the same camera, and it's probably still at least as significat as the difference between camera models. Favorable conditions, exposure, and processing can make pretty much any APS-C camera look better than another that is struggling with unfavorable conditions, exposure, and processing - but switch the camera leaving everything else the same, and suddelnly the camera that looked worse before can be better.

That's not to say there is *no* difference between cameras - just the other variables involved are far more significant than most people realize.
01-27-2010, 12:01 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by GoremanX Quote
You make it sound like a night-and-day difference in ISO performance betwene the 2 cameras. It isn't.
Thanks for clearing that up, this was exactly what I wanted to know. I have no idea of the differences myself, but I guesss reading too much about how good K-x ISO is and how bad K-7 ISO is made my post sound that way

QuoteOriginally posted by GoremanX Quote
Some people have a Kx with amazing low-light performance, others have just acceptable results. Same with the K-7, some people get one that performs flawlessly in low light, others get no more than the expected performance. In all honesty, I find nothing wrong wih my K-7's low light performance. Even at 800 or 1600 ISO, I get great results. It's only when I start to pixel-peep that the noise becomes apparent.
Thanks Frank, I had no idea ISO performance could vary between samples, but it makes sense though.

01-27-2010, 12:35 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Realistically, the difference between great and bad high ISO performance has more to do with the nature of the scene, exposure, and processing used than any variation between two samples of the same camera, and it's probably still at least as significat as the difference between camera models. Favorable conditions, exposure, and processing can make pretty much any APS-C camera look better than another that is struggling with unfavorable conditions, exposure, and processing - but switch the camera leaving everything else the same, and suddelnly the camera that looked worse before can be better.

That's not to say there is *no* difference between cameras - just the other variables involved are far more significant than most people realize.
Thanks Marc for your sound reply. I guess I shouldn't expect too much by a camera upgrade or I will end up disappointed. So maybe I should stop researching cameras and spend the time improving my shooting istead
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