Is this normal noise/sharpness for K5/Kit lens?

Started Apr 22, 2012 | Discussions thread
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SenorBeef
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Is this normal noise/sharpness for K5/Kit lens?
Apr 22, 2012

I've got a new K5 and right now I only have the 18-55WR kit lens. So far the image quality has not impressed me terribly well - noise kicks in at a lower ISO than I'd expect, and there's just that not much detail in some parts of the image.

So I'm wondering if there's something wrong, or if I'm just expecting too much out of the kit lens, or if my expectations about image quality in general are too high.

I've used the straight out of the camera JPEGs so that my skill at PP isn't a factor, but I do have the RAWs if you want to see those.

The first image is a crop from a portrait. The Iso is only 640, which should have very low noise, yet the background seems pretty noisy to me. The out of focus areas are worse, but even the in-focus arm has a lot of noise. I've seen images on this forum where 3200 and 6400 ISO shots look a lot less noisy than this image at 640 iso. Is it their post processing skill at work?

Next up is what I'd consider one of my sharper pictures. Viewed at small size, it looks pretty good, but zoom in and it just seems like there's a general lack of sharpness and detail. It's about as good as my Canon SX230 small sensor camera, and that camera isn't known for having an especially sharp lens or sensor. I expected better from a SLR, even with just the kit lens.

Below is a crop to show what I mean.

Here's another one where the sharpness on the rocks looks okay at lower res, but the patterns in the water look strange, especially when viewed close up. There's just not that much detail there. I know this picture is overexposed.

Is this normal output for a K5 and 18-55?

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Pentax K-5 Pentax smc DA 55-300mm F4.0-5.8 ED
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