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02-21-2010, 09:30 PM   #1
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Questions for people who have switched to 40d/50d Canon from Pentax

I'v been considering switching for a couple years for a couple different reasons. If you've made the switch to a canon 40d, or 50d from a K10d and/or a k20d I would be curious to hear your thoughts on the switch. I'm really only interested in hearing from people who have actually owned one of the Canons and one of the pentax. I don't want to turn this thread into a bash or, a "which is better" thread so if you want to post here, or pm with your thoughts thats cool too.

02-22-2010, 02:38 AM   #2
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I switched from a K20D and some cheap lenses (some of them were excellent, though) to a 40D with the EF 85mm f1.8. That 85mm is a great piece of glass, and my entire reason for switching, but that's an aside from your question.

Regarding the K20D vs. the 40D: The 40D is bigger/heavier, made of metal but less sealed, has a smaller viewfinder, and is a heck of a lot faster. AF speed isn't terribly important to me but that 6.5 fps was a lot of fun and occasionally even really beneficial.

On the other hand, I preferred the ergonomics and control layout of the K20D, SR is often genuinely helpful, and aside from the higher resolution, I find the colors from the K20D more "realistic" looking no matter what I do in post, found the DR at low ISO to be about equal, and actually found the K20D's high-ISO performance more satisfying than the 40D's. A little less overall image noise, and the noise present was of a more subjectively "pleasing" variety, interfering with the image less than the 40D's more digital-looking noise. I didn't like using the 40D above ISO 400 (200 if I could help it) but I cranked the K20D up to 1250 from time to time without regrets. I've never understood why so many considered the 40D to be such a low-light performer.

After my time with the 40D, I've moved back to Pentax with the K-x, and found that it gives me better image quality than even the K20D while still being almost as speedy as the 40D (aside from write times), and I find that I don't miss either of the previous cameras. Occasionally it feels like a semipro featureset would be nice to have, but the portability of a consumer-grade body is an acceptable tradeoff for me.

That EF 85mm on the other hand, is something I can miss.
02-22-2010, 09:20 AM   #3
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I used to have a K20D and switched to Canon, first to a 1Ds II, later on added a 10D, 20D and 50D.

K20D pros:
Shake reduction
Great image quality
Well thought out (little things like disabling SR when you use the IR remote)
Great Pentax glass
"Film like" noise

K20D cons:
Very, very outdated autofocus (honestly, my ancient 10D did far better)
Less "responsive" feeling overall
Liveview pretty useless
Consistently underexposed

50D pros:
Extremely responsive
Fast, reliable autofocus in every situation (low light, servo tracking etc)
High FPS (6.3) can come in handy at times
Very good liveview
LOTS of good glass at all sorts of price points

50D cons:
Noise more ugly looking at higher ISO than Pentax
More high strung than the K20D -- less forgiving of exposure errors


I know a lot of people bash Canon ergonomics, but I really have come to enjoy using the 50D and the 1Ds2. The top/front dial is located in a very good position, and the big rear dial sits in a convenient spot too. In contrast, if I pick up a K20D today the dials feel awkwardly positioned, especially the front one; on the Canon bodies I just shift my finger up slightly while on the Pentax ones I have to twist it a bit to twirl the dial. Not sure why people like to bemoan the Canon ergonomics honestly...
02-22-2010, 10:37 AM   #4
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I had K10D switched to Canon 5D2. The main reason was ancient AF, and metering with a life of it's own. FF comes handy too.
Why buy used 40D, go for used 5D classic, there are plenty around for just over $1K.

The way Canon lay out camera controls for mid range cameras is not as convenient as Pentax or Nikon. I also do not like the way AUTO ISO is working on Canon, but overall I am quite happy with the move.



QuoteOriginally posted by reknelb Quote
I'v been considering switching for a couple years for a couple different reasons. If you've made the switch to a canon 40d, or 50d from a K10d and/or a k20d I would be curious to hear your thoughts on the switch. I'm really only interested in hearing from people who have actually owned one of the Canons and one of the pentax. I don't want to turn this thread into a bash or, a "which is better" thread so if you want to post here, or pm with your thoughts thats cool too.


02-22-2010, 10:43 AM   #5
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Anyone moved from K-7 to a Nikon?
02-22-2010, 11:33 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by awo425 Quote
I had K10D switched to Canon 5D2. The main reason was ancient AF, and metering with a life of it's own. FF comes handy too.
Why buy used 40D, go for used 5D classic, there are plenty around for just over $1K.

The way Canon lay out camera controls for mid range cameras is not as convenient as Pentax or Nikon. I also do not like the way AUTO ISO is working on Canon, but overall I am quite happy with the move.

There are instances where crop cameras come in handy. Often they have higher pixel density, which can be very beneficial when you are doing wildlife/birding. Also, the 40D AF system is a LOT better than the 5D one.
02-22-2010, 02:45 PM   #7
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I got a 40d refurb to go with a 400mm f5.6L for birding after pentax wouldn't repair my FA*300mm f2.8 (blew me off, basically) I was pretty perturbed so I won't send them any more of my cash and sold my longer pentax stuff. The autofocus with the 40d and 400mm is amazing after using the pentax 100d, 10d and 20d so for wildlife it is much better. I do like the IQ of my pentaxes and use them for general stuff. When my 40d died, Adorama gave me a refund (great store!) and I got the 50d. I like the microadjust (like the 20d) and the cropability but I do agree the noise on my 20d seems better. I usually keep it at 400iso which is easy since I also got a 300mm f2.8L IS. The 300mm is an amazing piece of glass, I don't think any of my lenses are sharper, maybe not even my 31mm.
02-22-2010, 02:46 PM   #8
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Thanks for the responses so far, keep em coming.

I wouldn't rule out a 5D but to be honest, I like crop cameras. I'm constantly at the long end of every lense I use and when I do put a wide angle on it usually comes off after a few shots.

I'm surprised to hear the noise on the 40d is worse than the k20d. I've read alot about how the 40d is even better than the 50d at high ISO???

02-22-2010, 03:03 PM   #9
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I think my 40d was cleaner than my k20d, But partly because I couldn't crop as much and the 50d seems pretty close noise-wise actually if exposed good. Neat image does a nice job for me if I need it. One thing I really miss is the nice, easy to see histogram on the pentax image preview.(and the bracket button) OK, two things, Oh and the green button (make that three)
02-22-2010, 03:10 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by reknelb Quote
Thanks for the responses so far, keep em coming.

I wouldn't rule out a 5D but to be honest, I like crop cameras. I'm constantly at the long end of every lense I use and when I do put a wide angle on it usually comes off after a few shots.

I'm surprised to hear the noise on the 40d is worse than the k20d. I've read alot about how the 40d is even better than the 50d at high ISO???
Unfortunately this is the kind of thing being pushed by sites like DPR that base their noise evaluations on 100% crops. This causes images from higher-resolution cameras to be viewed at higher magnifications, so any noise present in the image is enlarged more, so the crops from higher-resolution cameras tend to look noisier even if the overall image noise is the same of lower. Overall image noise, however, is what will really matter when it comes to viewing the images at full size in print or on the web, rather than comparing ridiculous crops.

My comments are based on overall image noise, which is lower in the K20D than the 40D, but also on pixel-level noise, which is slightly higher with the K20D but less disturbing to the eye (shadows in 40D files tend to take on a salt-and-pepper appearance, I've found).

On the Canon forums I lurk on there's been a trend in the last several months of people gradually realizing that overall, yes, the 50D is an improvement in image noise over the 40D. Unfortunately, the witch-hunt has shifted to the new 18mp sensors with the appearance of the 7D, with people shouting about how such high pixel density is a scam that's degrading image quality due to the pseudoscience they've read on the subject, while ignoring the actual real-world images that are showing the 18mp crop sensors to have the highest overall image quality of any APS-C sensors to date. Once Canon comes out with some 20+mp APS-C sensors in a couple years, people will start realizing "hey, I guess that 18mp sensor really was the improvement they said it was."
02-22-2010, 03:53 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by manishved Quote
Anyone moved from K-7 to a Nikon?
I have... K10=>K7=>D300s What do you want to hear?
02-22-2010, 06:02 PM   #12
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Let me add this question to the original topic; how does the K7 AF compare to the 40d/50d? Is it any faster than the k20d?
02-22-2010, 06:11 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by reknelb Quote
Let me add this question to the original topic; how does the K7 AF compare to the 40d/50d? Is it any faster than the k20d?
Let's just say that you'll see as much increase in AF-speed (for screw-driven lenses) between your current K10d (which is the same as K20d) and K7... as you will see between a K7 and a Canon 20d-50d...
02-22-2010, 06:37 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by alexeyga Quote
I have... K10=>K7=>D300s
I've eyed that D300s off. It looks a very neat cam indeed. It is a fair bob more expensive than the 50D though.

reknelb, What is your main gripe with the Pentax system anyhow?
02-22-2010, 07:02 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by fractal Quote

reknelb, What is your main gripe with the Pentax system anyhow?

AF speed, and accuracy, especially in low light. More FPS would be nice but has never been an issue.
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