Considering throwing in the towel with Pentax, some honest unbiased thoughts on the matter desired..

Started Nov 2, 2013 | Questions
Alex Sarbu Veteran Member • Posts: 7,272
Re: Considering throwing in the towel with Pentax, some honest unbiased thoughts..

robbo d wrote:

I own the Kx and the K5IIs and with good glass on the front and with good care of your image quality like tripods, correct shutter speeds and light, well there's not a huge noticeable difference.

We can believe that the Kx is 'old' and therefore sub standard, but because this is a 'gearhead' forum that they aren't considered viable anymore........the Kx when it came out, punched well above its weight and if you believe 'snapsort', its sensor is still up there with the current canon ones and better than most of their recent APS-C....

I didn't said the K-x is "sub standard" or "not viable"; if it suits your needs it's definitely a viable option. But just in case if you might want a faster camera, higher resolution with no AA filter, higher DR, better build quality, weather sealing, battery grip, dual control wheels, AstroTracer support, AF working down to -3EV, 100% viewfinder, more and smaller AF points, AF tracking linked to an RGB metering system, quieter shutter release and many other such things - Pentax has them.

My point? Since the OP is not in a hurry to upgrade - not that he should - I doubt Pentax would ever be a limiting factor for him.

Pentax on the way out....is biased fanboy emotional claptrap from other brand followers and salesman uneducated enough to sell groceries at the checkout let alone cameras. The other big issue they will spin is lack of lenses.....give me a break!!!....Pentax has one of the best APS-C lens line ups and with Sigma, Tamron and Samyang....well, the rest is history.

Usually it gets worse when Pentax releases a truly amazing product

At the end of the day, if it's a change you want and someone you think you trust and respect has said another brand is better, then go for it, do what's comfortable for you, but other than video capabilities....Pentax in many ways is the equivalent or better than the opposition, they've had to be or they wouldnt be in business anymore and Ricoh would not be investing so much in them, new camera's and lenses and flashe and technology.

I must admit, I started having my doubts about staying with Pentax in the last Hoya years. I'm glad I wasn't in a hurry...

Alex

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newmikey Veteran Member • Posts: 4,712
First time poster, no replies...flamebait

cdherman wrote:

My daughter needs a bigger lens for her highschool yearbook work.

Really? And you can't find one? What does that have to do with Pentax or any other brand for that matter?

it seems like Pentax is dwindling slowly. Wondering if I should bail out before I make the next high dollar purchase.....

Yep, seems like you should choose something else then. "Bail out" is something of an odd statement as you seem to not have much to bail out from. You have a golden opportunity to spend your money on any brand that floats your boat. Go for it!

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KL Matt Veteran Member • Posts: 5,885
What kind of bizarre yearbook...

requires "bigger" lenses, or a 750mm focal length equivalent lens? If she can't do yearbook shots with the (very good and complete regardless of brand) kit you have, the problem is not the gear.

You sure your daughter isn't having a little fun with her old man?

Matt

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GossCTP Veteran Member • Posts: 4,749
No certainty anywhere

You're daughter's school must have a fancy yearbook. I think our staff used disposable 35mm cameras

It's an uncertain time in photography in general. Lots of new mirrorless mounts are arriving, which adds to the volatility. The market seems overcrowded, but at the same time, the stalwarts are not leading the way. There are no clear winners in this marketplace. However, as consumers we have never had such a capable crop of cameras. Whatever you choose, you will have to spend money and take a risk that it will either not be what you want, or not be supported down the road. Just spend what you can afford to lose on what will realistically work for you now.

Happy shooting

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OP cdherman Junior Member • Posts: 27
Re: No certainty anywhere
5

Boy, I never should have brought my daughter into this......

She definitely does not NEED a bigger lens, but she's shooting a lot of sports, so it would be nice.

And I would like a bigger lens too.  Yes, by all means the old man would like one too.

I am financially in a position to spend pretty much whatever makes sense.

That's the problem -- knowing what makes sense.  There often a sweet spot, after which laws of diminishing returns start to kick in.

30 years ago or even 15, we sort of read in some magazines the opinions of writers and talked to our friends and made a leap of faith.  Now with the internet, forums and websites, plus billions of individual reviews, it becomes baffling at times.....

I struggle in particular with the debate between APS and full frame that seems to be out there.  I'd hate to invest in an expensive lens for any mount, only to find it hamstrung in a few years.....

Well, anyhow.  For those of you who provided insightful commentary, I thank you greatly...

For some of the others, I'd point out that I am uneducated in this matter, but not stupid.  Some of you may consider yourselves well educated about the topic, rightfully so.  But you have also shown your stupid sides in your approach to educate me......

Holger Bargen Senior Member • Posts: 2,120
Re: No certainty anywhere

If your daughter shoots a lot of sports - did you ever consider to use a GoPro Hero? Those action cams can be placed a tvery exposed places and thus offer spectacular perspectives and situations. Something no one ever has seen so far. It's a nice toy to play around which has the potential to become a tool to take photos that are real eye-chatchers in a quality that is good enough for photographs in a book.

Just an idea...

Best regards

Holger

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newmikey Veteran Member • Posts: 4,712
Quite the contrary!
1

cdherman wrote:

For some of the others, I'd point out that I am uneducated in this matter, but not stupid. Some of you may consider yourselves well educated about the topic, rightfully so. But you have also shown your stupid sides in your approach to educate me......

You were the one who seems to make an issue out of nothing. Those "couple APS-c cheap entry lenses in the 18-55 and 50-200 ranges" are actually capable of delivering very decent results when coupled to a recent body like the K-50 and your "FA 1:1.4 50mm and a Sigma 1:1.8 EX DG 28m Macro" are more than just "nice" - they are actually pretty excellent.

You were the one referring to making a yearbook and contemplating a 50-500mm for that purpose and you are the one making silly statements that have nothing to do with being either technically educated or not, like "It seems like Pentax is dwindling slowly" or "find one of the other 'big 2' brands going forward".

There is nothing to educate anyone about here. You are seeking justification to junk not only an old body but also 4 quite capable lenses for the mere satisfaction of buying a more popular brand. Why ask us in the first place? You do not want to hear the answers anyway unless they are right up your street, well OK then: "Pentax is doomed to die, buy either a Canon or a Nikon as they are the only brands that really matter. You will make awesome images merely by selecting a different and obviously much better brand."

Oh. yeah, before I forget: "Buy a 50-500mm especially for indoor, low-light, hand-held sports. Because it is longer, heavier and far more expensive, it will produce much better shots than any of the f2.8 70-200mm zooms, the DA*50-135mm or the f4.0 DA*60-250mm

Because your 50-500mm has the 50-70mm range at its low end, it would be the best choice for yearbook portraits as well, as long as the lights of the gym are on when your daughter shoots 'm."

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awaldram
awaldram Forum Pro • Posts: 12,819
Re: No certainty anywhere

cdherman wrote:

Boy, I never should have brought my daughter into this......

She definitely does not NEED a bigger lens, but she's shooting a lot of sports, so it would be nice.

And you think a slow super zoom will fit the bill?

If you talking a variety of sports from indoor to outdoor the the 50-500 is not the best option by a long way.

irrelevant of body your going to need something quick ergo f2.8 or f4.

And I would like a bigger lens too. Yes, by all means the old man would like one too.

You need to decide what you 'want' it for as given your previous buying pattern I suspect you an occasional shooter with limited interest in photography.

I am financially in a position to spend pretty much whatever makes sense.

Are you sure you can throw many $1000 at this.? I ask as your current body and lens indicate the opposite that you have no interest in top end photography, and trust me if you want to do 'sport' that $1500 wont even wet the sides.

That's the problem -- knowing what makes sense. There often a sweet spot, after which laws of diminishing returns start to kick in.

What makes sense to me is you purchase a high performance Prosumer compact

30 years ago or even 15, we sort of read in some magazines the opinions of writers and talked to our friends and made a leap of faith. Now with the internet, forums and websites, plus billions of individual reviews, it becomes baffling at times.....

There is plenty of information on shooting sport try putting sport photography in to google.

I struggle in particular with the debate between APS and full frame that seems to be out there. I'd hate to invest in an expensive lens for any mount, only to find it hamstrung in a few years.....

I'm not sure what you think the arguments about FF and aps-c are about .? but I don;t think they affect you at all given your 50-500 for sports option.!

Well, anyhow. For those of you who provided insightful commentary, I thank you greatly...

For some of the others, I'd point out that I am uneducated in this matter, but not stupid. Some of you may consider yourselves well educated about the topic, rightfully so. But you have also shown your stupid sides in your approach to educate me......

I wouldn't worry about it but when you express a preference for a lens 2 stops slower than that required and the query FF to gain a stop it's all a little confused and with a confused question you will get confused answers.

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Alex Sarbu Veteran Member • Posts: 7,272
Re: No certainty anywhere

cdherman wrote:

Boy, I never should have brought my daughter into this......

She definitely does not NEED a bigger lens, but she's shooting a lot of sports, so it would be nice.

And I would like a bigger lens too. Yes, by all means the old man would like one too.

I am financially in a position to spend pretty much whatever makes sense.

The thing is - a slow 50-500 did not make sense for the stated purpose.

So please think carefully about why and what for do you want that lens, tell us and I'm sure you'll get useful advice. Even from those who appears uncooperative

Alex

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jm_mac Senior Member • Posts: 2,039
I have two kdis in high school and go to lots of high school events...
4

newmikey wrote:

<snip>

Oh. yeah, before I forget: "Buy a 50-500mm especially for indoor, low-light, hand-held sports. Because it is longer, heavier and far more expensive, it will produce much better shots than any of the f2.8 70-200mm zooms, the DA*50-135mm or the f4.0 DA*60-250mm

Because your 50-500mm has the 50-70mm range at its low end, it would be the best choice for yearbook portraits as well, as long as the lights of the gym are on when your daughter shoots 'm."

<snip>

LOL, very funny!

To get a little more serious, I have been to lots of H.S. events in the last 6 years (two kids, the second is now a senior), and there are quite a few of them running around at each event with DSLRs - almost all the lowest of the low-end consumer DSLRs, and almost all with some kind of kit lens (18-55 or 55-200).  Very few have even a modestly upgraded lens.  I have seen zero at these events that are moderately serious enough about photography to even have a prime lens.  But here are some facts to keep in mind:

1.  For these kids, a DSLR is almost an accessory - all their friends have Canon or Nikon.  Just like all their friends have an iPhone.  If your child is is pushing for a Canikon, there is a good chance it is because all their friends have a Canikon, not because they are better cameras.  For a yearbook, there is no reason why Pentax would not fulfill your needs.

2.  If your child is shooting sports, a 50-500mm is...kind of inappropriate.  If she is with the yearbook, she can roam the sidelines or baseline or dugout or goalline at will, and can get up close to the action.  For daylight games (which is what your thinking if you mention the 50-500mm), any number of 50-200, 55-300, 70-200, 70-300 zooms should work fine.  Some focus faster than others - I like the sigmas *with HSM* because they focus really fast (I have these on Nikon and Pentax and they are equally fast with both mounts).

3.  For indoor sports...  get a flash and learn to anticipate the action, and/or get faster lenses, and/or spend a lot more money on both a body and lenses.

4.  For people pictures, the 18-55mm kit should work just fine.

All the tips above are based on what I have seen of yearbook photos.  I would do things different for me (because I have more money to spend than a high school kid and am more serious about my photography), but the production quality in yearbooks seldom requires professional equipment.

jm_mac

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Wallace Ross
Wallace Ross Senior Member • Posts: 2,087
Re: No certainty anywhere
1

Okay forgetting your weird backhanded request for help for the moment.  My daughter shoots yearbook at her school and I gave her my K10d with a DA18-55 WR and she's never needed anything else seeing as the standard most kids use is their phone.

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audiobomber
audiobomber Veteran Member • Posts: 5,575
Re: Considering throwing in the towel with Pentax
2

Most of us (Pentax shooters) see Pentax rising, supported by Ricoh, not going down like they were with Hoya. The new K bodies have superb features, and auto-focus compared to your K-x is in an entirely different league.

Have you hefted a 50-500mm? It's a pretty long and heavy lens. I really wonder whether your daughter would use it? She'd probably be more comfortable with an HD 55-30mm WR.

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Dan

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awaldram
awaldram Forum Pro • Posts: 12,819
Re: Considering throwing in the towel with Pentax

audiobomber wrote:

Most of us (Pentax shooters) see Pentax rising, supported by Ricoh, not going down like they were with Hoya. The new K bodies have superb features, and auto-focus compared to your K-x is in an entirely different league.

Chatting to rep today Pentax R&D staffing is now 10X the seize it was 2 years ago.!

Also the k3 was delayed because Ricoh had a 'bitch' list from trawling forums and these each had to be addressed before approval for release.

Make of it as you will but I have no doubts the Rep believed it to be true.

Have you hefted a 50-500mm? It's a pretty long and heavy lens. I really wonder whether your daughter would use it? She'd probably be more comfortable with an HD 55-30mm WR.

You mean 55-300 and I'd agree for day shooting by an inexperienced young lady a light easily handled xx-300 is the best starter lens.

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Dan

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rogerstpierre Veteran Member • Posts: 3,921
Re: Considering throwing in the towel with Pentax..

Like many have suggested, she won't be taking any good photograph with the Bigma indoor. With such lens you need to work with a heavy tripod, and much experience to obtain good result. You are mis-informed, Pentax market shares are increasing, so that is not a reason to switch system. To me it seems more like a classic case of peer pressures. You daughter already have all she needs to shoot a yearbook, so that's not a reason either. What she's missing is a decent flash, that's all.

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Roger

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jf_tea Contributing Member • Posts: 991
Re: No certainty anywhere

For the long lens, unless you need uber-pro quality (huge size & weight), why not look at a super-zoom such as the FZ200 ?

If you stay with Pentax (you already have two good lenses), I suggest getting a K5IIs. It's not expensive now, and, it's amazing for IQ and AF (compared to K5 and older bodies).

For long lens advice, look at previous posts from "brandrx". He has an extensive collection of long lenses for Pentax. He's so lucky

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miles green
miles green Veteran Member • Posts: 6,277
Re: No certainty anywhere

Hmmm... Ok, sports - that's probably as expensive a photography specialization as it gets. Second to deep-sky astrophotography maybe?

So indoor or outdoor sports?

Indoor, maybe a Sigma 70-200 f/2.8

Outdoor, a DA* Pentax 300 f/4. Do they play in the rain?

A K3 would be nice, for many reasons...

This is already serious equipment, perfectly capable of pro results. Both of these are a HUGE step up from a kit tele-zoom, in capability, price (maybe a non-issue), and size. If she were my kid, i'd try this first.

Then, when she gets into college and if she got more serious about it, I'd keep said Pentax and long lens for myself and get her a used pro sports body and lens (like a 1Diii and old version 300/2.8 and TC, or equivalent Nikon). But not before.

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Miles Green
Pentaxian with chronic LBA
Corfu, Greece

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alpha bet Regular Member • Posts: 132
Re: Considering throwing in the towel with Pentax
3

Pentax offers you a love that never fails. Your adulterous departure will echo through the annals of history and haunt you and your progeny for all eternity. Don't do it.

Mike Hiran
Mike Hiran Senior Member • Posts: 1,109
Think about your needs, and take another look at Pentax
3

Really, you have a pretty good kit now.  Granted auto focus in the new bodies is quite a bit better and build quality is several notches higher than the kx on all current Pentax bodies.  Your 2 zooms are pretty good if stopped down and your primes are very good.

Maybe if we knew a bit more about the things you photograph we could make suggestions specific to you and your daughter's needs.  So if she is doing low light sports shooting, the advice to go after a faster lens and work on her field positioning (if she needs a 500mm, she should try to put herself closer to the action so she won't need 500mm).  If you're needing the 500mm for birding or wildlife shots, well then the Bigma would make sense.  I've seen really good work from semi-pro sports photogs and often times they are using a 70-200 f2.8 lens so they can have faster shutter speeds and/or lower iso's...

One thing too - if you're wanting more length in your lenses, going full frame will take you in the wrong direction since you won't have the crop factor in your favor anymore.  Personally, the biggest advantage in FF is having a shallower depth of field and honestly, there aren't many occasions where this is really an advantage.  Your lenses will have to by physically larger and heavier too.

From a value perspective, it's hard to ignore the k30 and k50 right now.  For under $500 you can get the body with a WR lens.  In terms of comparing this to your kx, both the k30 and k50 will have a brighter larger pentaprism viewfinder, they will have dual control wheels, viewable focus points in the viewfinder, faster live view focusing, better auto focus on many different levels, higher shots per second, improved stabilization, lithium battery and AA battery options, weather sealing, video modes, etc etc  I had a kx for quite some time and it's a good camera.  But it's 3 generations old now - Pentax has come a long long way since then.

Ultimately though, you have to feel good about the brand to have confidence in it.  It sounds like you don't spend a ton of time (I know I spend too much time here!!!) researching all the news and rumors of different camera brands.  You have other interests and things to do with your time - that's perfectly fine.  But just know I've never felt more optimistic about Pentax and where it's going for the last 6 years.  I've always loved the brand and their products, but the things they are doing to move the brand forward right now is very exciting.  The k3 addresses many of the improvements people were wanting over the k5 which shows Ricoh/Pentax is listening to their customers.  They are improving their lenses so that affordable weather resistance can be had.  It really is a good time to be with Pentax.

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OP cdherman Junior Member • Posts: 27
Re: No certainty anywhere

Wallace Ross wrote:

Okay forgetting your weird backhanded request for help for the moment. My daughter shoots yearbook at her school and I gave her my K10d with a DA18-55 WR and she's never needed anything else seeing as the standard most kids use is their phone.

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OK, my apologies to most of you -- I mainly was ticked at the one post that referred to me as "trollbait".....

Interestingly, its not at all my daughter agitating for a Nikon or Canon -- she like the Kx body, but noted that the school has a loaner longer lens that would be nice to try, but its not a Pentax mount.  Like I said in my second post -- I have the money buy what I want, but I also hate wasting it too.

As for the best lens for my daughter (and me), I have not decided on the 50-500 in any way.  It was just a high dollar lens that I was exploring for the Pentax, and then I got to thinking about whether I was doing the right thing buying Pentax, since a couple of the recent entries were not quite as good as the competition, in the reviews.  Admittedly, the K3 seems to be fabulous camera....

I actually have  had several Pentax bodies through the years, so I am not just some guy who bought the Kx as his first DSLR and is now second guessing the move....  The K-x was an upgrade to an earlier DSLR as well....  I don't have my old film camera anymore -- fond memories but the shutter jammed and it was not worth it to fix it...

The 75-300 recommendations look reasonable.  I'll check those out....

audiobomber
audiobomber Veteran Member • Posts: 5,575
Re: Considering throwing in the towel with Pentax
1

awaldram wrote:

audiobomber wrote:

Most of us (Pentax shooters) see Pentax rising, supported by Ricoh, not going down like they were with Hoya. The new K bodies have superb features, and auto-focus compared to your K-x is in an entirely different league.

Chatting to rep today Pentax R&D staffing is now 10X the seize it was 2 years ago.!

You mean size.

That's great to hear.

Also the k3 was delayed because Ricoh had a 'bitch' list from trawling forums and these each had to be addressed before approval for release.

Interesting and quite believable given how long it took for the K-3 to reach the market. They obviously lot of effort into the big and little things, and completely eliminated the K-5 complaint list. I just spent a full day with my K-3. Wow, they hit this one out of the park. What a beautifully responsive machine.

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Dan

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