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10-03-2012, 07:02 AM   #16
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X-5

For the price, the X-5 looks like a pretty good value for money proposition for someone looking for a super-zoom camera.
From a few reviews and looking at some sample images, I like :-
  • The image quality is better than expected from the sensor
  • Colors are very crisp and natural
  • The EVF is the same as on the X-90 which is OK in general use.
  • The tilting LCD is nice
  • It is powered by 4 AA batteries which last about 500 shots. I like this.
  • It can capture 10 images per second in burst mode, but only at 10MP resolution
  • It has the same lens as the X-90 which gave pretty good results

Some points that I don't much like are:-
  • Shutter speed is 1/4 sec - 1/1500 (up to 4 sec in night mode) (X-90 is 4 sec - 1/4000)
  • Aperture f3.1 - f5.9 (X-90 is f2.8 - f8). I think f2 - f8 or f11 would have been great
  • Program & Manual settings, but no quick Aperture Priority or Shutter Priority. I use Av and Tv a lot!
  • No time lapse mode as on the X-90. Not often used but nice to have?

Things I really would have liked, but which are missing:-
  • A manual zoom control ring on the lens OR a manual focus control ring on the lens
  • A RAW option
  • Ability to screw filters onto the lens

Overall I don't think its a bad buy for $279. I just wonder if Pentax could not have made this the BEST bridge camera for say $350 instead of the CHEAPEST bridge camera for $279...

10-04-2012, 11:55 PM   #17
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Good points Anton.

I'm toying with the options of the two Panasonics (FZ60/FZ200) and the Pentax X-5 as backups for my present K-r.

It would have been nice to see the capability to use filters on the X-5, but the AA battery option and somewhat lower shelf price (vs. the two Panasonics) are, I believe, points in favour of the X-5.

(Sigh) What to do, what to do....
10-05-2012, 12:03 AM   #18
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Picked up the X-5 today. It is nice, but it is still a bridge camera. Picture quality is pretty nice considering it is a bridge camera. The body is excellent. It is a mini K-5. Nice feel in the hands. Once I get a chance to take some pics, I will post one.


Take care and may God bless.

Ed
10-05-2012, 12:20 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by ronin67 Quote
Picked up the X-5 today. It is nice, but it is still a bridge camera. Picture quality is pretty nice considering it is a bridge camera. The body is excellent. It is a mini K-5. Nice feel in the hands. Once I get a chance to take some pics, I will post one.
Congrats and i hope you have much fun shooting with your new camera. Maybe you will even enter a few of the monthly Point & Shoot contests?
Would love to see some sample pics which show the dynamic range - bright light on white subject with dark shadows in the same image - and also some low light/high ISO images if you can.

10-05-2012, 01:12 AM   #20
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You blokes have got me interested in the X5 again. Good on you.....
I'm interested to find out what the zoom control is like (does it 'jump' past where you wanted to frame?).
It's half the price of the Panasonic FZ200 I'm looking at, and as my fund-raising is not panning out (ME Super and Spotmatic with related lenses on ebay), I'm re-thinking the X5.
And, it looks like a little K5.

Regards
10-05-2012, 02:12 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by sam-joseph Quote
You blokes have got me interested in the X5 again. Good on you.....
I'm interested to find out what the zoom control is like (does it 'jump' past where you wanted to frame?).
I am assuming that the zoom control on the X-5 will be identical to that of its predecessor, the X-90 (which I own).
On the X-90 the zoom motor extends the lens from extreme wide angle (1x = 4.6mm = 26mm equivalent) to extreme telephoto (26x=119.6mm = 676mm equivalent) in just over 2 seconds. This quick zooming to the telephoto end is good for nature and street photography when you want to frame the subject pretty quickly. Its not so good for very precise framing as you may jump past and have to ease it back a shade.

With some practice it becomes second-nature to "jog" the zoom switch to advance in small steps when you want precise framing. I don't find it too much of a problem - but I would have still liked a manual zoom ring on the lens that I could just twist as far as I need.

It is fairly easy to look at the LCD or EVF when you are zooming, and I have got used to zooming the lens to 2x (52mm equivalent) for "standard" lens shots and to 5x (130mm equivalent) for excellent portrait shots. There is a "1cm" marker on the zoom scale in the LCD/EVF which is the 2x "standard" lens setting.

Overall I must say the zoom switch was difficult to use at first, and only after some weeks with the camera did I get used to it and manage to get it under reasonable control. Now I don't even think about it. Besides, I tend to set the lens for the type of shot I am taking and then I move relative to the subject to get the framing I want if that is critical, or just crop to the desired scene in Post Processing.

One nice thing is that the camera remembers the zoom setting when it is switched off, and when switched on it returns to the same (previous) setting. So if you are taking pics at say, a wedding, and have the zooms set at 5x (which gives really great portraits) it will keep at 5x between sessions. You don't need to reset it each time you switch on.

Beware though - the zoom facility can make you lazy. Its too easy to stand far away from a subject and to take the shot at 20x zoom when you should walk closer, use a far lower zoom setting between 2x and 5x and get a much better result. Long zoom images do come out looking "flat" - buts that's with any long telephoto shot with any camera.

On the positive side I do NOT have any problem with noticeable distortion impacting the image quality at the extreme ends, 1x or 26x. Maybe there is a teensy little barrel distortion, a bit of chromatic aberration and vaguely soft corners at 26x but for wildlife photography the central subject looks absolutely fine and I don't really care if the edges of the image are very slightly imperfect.

You may also get people saying that 26x zoom is not enough when competitive bridge/superzoom cameras are offering 30x or more. Don't believe it. It is VERY DIFFICULT, even with steady hands, to take a hand-held shot at full 26x (676mm equiv) zoom. Some means of bracing the camera, along with a fast shutter speed, is essential. Obviously good light is a must.

I hope this aids your decision.
10-05-2012, 03:20 AM   #22
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Thanks for the info Anton. Of course, I'd really like to hear what difference there is in real-world use, between the X5 and Panasonic FZ200. I know the Fz200 has that fantastic f2.8 lens, but given the cost, is it TWICE the camera of the X5? Given that I will probably only use a bridge camera occasionally, the X5 is probably the best choice.

Regards
10-05-2012, 03:45 AM   #23
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Lens/Zoom performance

Just for the interest of those who want to see the lens zoom performance, I have submitted three images taken with the Pentax X-90, which as far as I can tell is fitted with exactly the same lens as the X-5.

Image 1 f8@1/125, ISO160, FL=4.6mm (26mm equiv)



Image 2 (of the area shown by the red rectangle in Image 1) f8@1/125, ISO500, FL=119.6mm (676mm equiv)

As you can see, the image quality is certainly quite acceptable at maximum optical zoom.

Image 3 (with digital zoom) f8@1/125, ISO250, FL=119.6mm + 6.3x digital (4225mm equiv)

As you can see, the digital zoomed image is very noisy with purple fringing in high contrast areas. Still the results may be acceptable if you absolutely need it to get that once-in-a-lifetime shot.

Results for the X-5 should be much the same.

10-05-2012, 04:29 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by sam-joseph Quote
Thanks for the info Anton. Of course, I'd really like to hear what difference there is in real-world use, between the X5 and Panasonic FZ200. I know the Fz200 has that fantastic f2.8 lens, but given the cost, is it TWICE the camera of the X5? Given that I will probably only use a bridge camera occasionally, the X5 is probably the best choice.
Hmmm. I shouldn't say this on a Pentax site, but have you looked at a Fujifilm FinePix HS25EXR which is the same price as the X-5?
It has a 1/2 sensor which is a tiny bit bigger, a lens with EFL: 4.2-126 mm (35 mm equivalent: 24-720 mm)
Aperture: f/2.8 (W) - 5.6 (T) to f/11 (I don't like the f3.1 - f5.9 restriction of the X-5). And the shutter speeds range from 30 secs to 1/4000 which is better than the X-5's 1/4 second to 1/1500. That all looks good, but it also has manual zoom by turning the lens barrel and that tips the scale for me. You can also use standard commercial filters on the lens. By all accounts it takes a bit of getting used to and experimentation to get the best image quality out of it, but once you know how to drive it the results are very good. If I were you I would have a good read of tests and reviews on the HS25EXR before ordering the X-5.
10-05-2012, 05:43 AM   #25
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I wasn't aware of that one, Anton. What a magnificent feature set for the price.
I'll be keeping that one in mind, but isn't it a pity it doesn't have 'Pentax' on the front?

Regards
10-05-2012, 10:14 AM   #26
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%$#&

Decided to take a look at the Finepix HS25EXR on a review site. Decent specs, not a bad price BUT, for $50 more, they have the HS30EXR, same lens (accepts filters), hot shoe = yes and shoots RAW. I ordered the X5 a few days ago, Didn't notice anywhere where in camera HDR was mentioned with the Fuji offerings, a nice feature that the X5 does have. So, my X5 hasn't shipped yet but I'm going to wait for my Pentax. Am hoping there will be a way to 'ingenuitize' a filter onto the lens. It will go boating in lieu of my K5 and on the water, a polarizer is a must have. Hello, Ricoh/Pentax, weatherize the camera and not provide a means to protect the lens? It is very tempting to jump ship.
10-05-2012, 04:36 PM   #27
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first impression of Pentax X5

Greetings,

This is my rookie year in Pentax forum, and there are still lots of things for me to learn here. My review might be not deep enough for most advance users in the forum, please bear with me. I will put the spec aside and focus on user experience. I got X5 from B&H several days ago, took some photos at a funeral, and I will post the links shortly after I get off work. My Pentax X5 serial number is 2301047.

Cons:

1. The battery mapping on the battery door is not clear enough, and user could insert the battery in wrong direction inside the terminals.

2. I got a silver color, the silver part is made by cheap plastic not alloy, and it didn’t carry out a good quality of feeling. I understood the point of design versus cost,and X5 is focus on design for budget.

3. This one I dislike it the most, and it’s the zoom controller ring. There are two settings for lens zooming speed which are default and high speed. Both settings are too fast for me, and I prefer slow increment instead of over zoom in then over zoom out for the adjustment.

4. Video recording has mono option only, and it outputs as mono into right and left speakers.

5. Need to use tripod and remote control F to achieve the best photo result. For example when X5 is on 26X zoom.

6. I did most of the photos under Auto-Pict mode,in comparison, Manual mode can generate better photos if other settings are correct.

7. Under video recording mode, the battery will drain faster than photo modes, and user can tell by the battery indicator. For example it shows empty during video recording, switch back to photo modes and shows 2 sectors left still.

8. The package contents are not included micro HDMI cable and O-CC129 camera case.

9. No matter what the capacity of the SD card is,video is allowed 25 minutes at max. After that user needs to restart another video recording.

10. Pentax boot-up screen takes around 2 to 3 seconds, and it made me missed out lots of Kodak moments.

11. 2 manual adjustable rollers for viewfinder.

12. Cannot mount flash.

13. No RAW.

14. Small sensor size.


Pros:
1.The tiltable screen came in handy, and it can flip 180 degree without a problem on tripod during overhead or low position.

2. User can get the AA battery or rechargeable AA battery anywhere.

3. The photo quality of X5 is capable to up against $600 dollars camera under an advance user in manual mode. For the price $279, it’s not a bad choice,and I have no regret about it.

4. The soft rubber grip on the lens body makes the handling easier.

5. X5 is perfect as a beater camera for travel. If I damaged my X5, my heart will not hurt as damaged a Pentax 645D. X5 is reasonable cheap in my honest opinion.

6. 26X Megazoom ability. [utilize its own strength]. Just for your information, I have disabled the digital zoom function on X5.

7. Flash effects range within 20 feet, and use it inside 10 feet for a better result.

8. 1cm Macro.


It's my 2 cents,
Wesley

Last edited by NSX167; 10-30-2012 at 03:56 PM. Reason: format issue
10-06-2012, 04:00 PM   #29
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Thanks sir. Where can I find the monthly point and shoot contests on the forum? Have a great day and may God bless.

Ed
10-06-2012, 05:40 PM   #30
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X-5 Macro of Japanese Joro Spider

First real attempt using the macro setting on the Pentax X-5.

May God bless.

Ed
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