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Old Dec 13, 2004, 7:21 AM   #1
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Sorry, I posted this question twice???



To all A200 owners, are you satisfied with your digicam? How are the indoor people pics (red-eyes, skin tones)? What external flash would you recommend?

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Old Jan 6, 2005, 6:38 PM   #2
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Hello K-M A200 owners! :bye:


Where are you? ... We know you're out there! ... Please let us know how it's going with your new K-M A200s.

So far, on other threads,there arecomments, speculations, and judgments from non-owners and prospective buyers only. What is missing isfeed-back & inputfromA200 owners.

Pleaseshareyourfindings, comments, and photos with us!

Thanks,

Dean, et al


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Old Jan 19, 2005, 1:38 PM   #3
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booya wrote: "I went back and forth betwen the a200, Nikon 8800, and Canon Pro1 for weeks. I tested all of them at a local shop and ended up with the a200. The manual zoom ring is sooo much nicer to use than the zoom buttons on the Nikon, and I read that the Nikon is a little slow compared to the others. Manual zoom ring, anti-shake, great image quality, and decent speed... After using it for a couple weeks, I absolutely love it."

The above quote was'borrowed'from the forum ofanother website (DCResource).

:|Dean
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Old Jan 21, 2005, 8:50 PM   #4
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Reply, I shall!

However, I've had my new A200 for only two days now, so my experience with it is very limited.

That being said, my expectations thus far have been fully exceeded. I'm impressed with the build quality of this camera, it's no cheapie. Buttons are well-placed and construction is solid, with smooth seams and a rattle-free body. The manual zoom takes me right back to the days of my Pentax SF1. I feel truly sorry for those poor saps with motorized zoom now! The action is smooth and precise, although there is a bit of stiffness when you rack it at the wide and telephoto ends. Probably because the camera is so new. With time it may loosen a bit. The good thing is, you can go from wide to tele as fast as you can move your hand. No motorized zoom can match that capability.

The size and weight are perfect. The camera has just enough heft to it to make for a steady platform, but not heavy enough to tire you out. I held the camera for what seemed like forever last night, but I never tired of holding it. It just felt so comfortable in my hand. Of course, thats totally subjective to the individual holding it. Its bulk was not a bother either, as it is one, if not the smallest of the cameras in the 8.0MP, image-stabilised, ultra-zoom class of digicams. Even smaller and lighter than the A2.

Menu screens were layed out logically, and your button presses on the navigation pad were welcomed with an immediate response. This is welcome because some menu systems are plagued by a laggy response time to your inputs. Thats especially important when you're trying to make manual changes under the gun and need to navigate through the screens in a hurry.

Features and options abound in this camera. Those who find short-comings in its selection probably should be looking towards more expensive, professional cameras. However, there is enough here to please most folks. Start-up time and shot-to-shot times are relatively fast (when used with a Lexar 80x CF card) and should be good enough for all but the most discriminating sports shooter.

Image quality is astounding. Don't let the blow-hards scare you away about the images being soft or the colors being dull. When it comes to choices, KM thankfully left it up to us, as it should be. You want aggressive colors and sharpness right off the bat? Pre-process it with the A200's custom settings. Rather have a natural, un-altered master? Post-process with Photoshop if you like. The point is: the choice is yours.

Overall, this is a delicious little camera. The fully-articulated LCD screen is a dream. Not only does it look good, it's actually USEFUL! Don't let the bitter owners of the A2 steer you wrong, as that camera's flip-out design is a complete waste of time. If you play your cards right, you can snag this highly-capable, extremely portable, 8.0MP, 7x-optical, image-stabilized gem for under $590 USD (as I did) online. Take the money that you saved and invest in a fast CF card and a spare battery, if you don't have them already, and you'll still save a bunch of cash compared to the older, heavier, bulkier, competition (Nikon, Olympus, Canon, Sony--including KM's own A2).

I'll have more to report later!

Enjoy!
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Old Jan 21, 2005, 10:04 PM   #5
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BoneDaddy wrote:
Quote:

Don't let the bitter owners of the A2 steer you wrong, as that camera's flip-out design is a complete waste of time.
I never said it wasn't useful. . .I just said that it isn't worth the "downgrades" from the A2, just to get a flip out LCD(among other things of course :lol
Glad you got a KM over some other brand though!:lol:

Max
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Old Jan 21, 2005, 10:29 PM   #6
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You realize I'm taunting you, right? :G

The A200 has it's place in the "prosumer" class of cameras. It's not the heavyweight of the A2, but KM DID improve on some of the shortcomings of the A2, at the expense of forfeiting some of the high-quality features the A2 posesses. If a 900K+ resolution tilting EVF with auto-sense is enough to make one buy a camera, then that must be an important thing. It all adds up to personal preference. I found the A2 to be large, bulky and old-looking, with a useless main LCD that served no purpose. And it was still going for premium prices. However, as I said, the two cameras are targeted towards different buyers. Does that make one better than the other? Only the individual buyer can decide that.

It's important to keep in mind that the A200 improves many of the faults of the A2, while it sacrifices some of the things that made the A2, at one time, such a great camera. Now, it's only a matter of time that both the A2, and the newer A200, will both be eclipsed by better cameras...

Cheers! Long live KM!
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 8:07 AM   #7
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BoneDaddy wrote:
Quote:
Overall, this is a delicious little camera. The fully-articulated LCD screen is a dream. Not only does it look good, it's actually USEFUL! Don't let the bitter owners of the A2 steer you wrong, as that camera's flip-out design is a complete waste of time. If you play your cards right, you can snag this highly-capable, extremely portable, 8.0MP, 7x-optical, image-stabilized gem for under $590 USD (as I did) online. Take the money that you saved and invest in a fast CF card and a spare battery, if you don't have them already, and you'll still save a bunch of cash compared to the older, heavier, bulkier, competition (Nikon, Olympus, Canon, Sony--including KM's own A2).

I'll have more to report later!

Enjoy!
Quote:
Bonedaddy,
Quote:
These are the kinds of reviews I have been looking for. The everyday users first impressions. Two things I have questions on:
Quote:
1. If you don't mind, who did you purchase your A200 from and how was the experience working with them?
Quote:
2. I have read and seen the lag between pictures when using the flash, has that been a big problem for you in practical use, or just one of those things you get used to with use?
Quote:
Thanks, Mike :-)
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 9:36 AM   #8
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blckthree wrote:
Quote:
BoneDaddy wrote:
Quote:
Overall, this is a delicious little camera. The fully-articulated LCD screen is a dream. Not only does it look good, it's actually USEFUL! Don't let the bitter owners of the A2 steer you wrong, as that camera's flip-out design is a complete waste of time. If you play your cards right, you can snag this highly-capable, extremely portable, 8.0MP, 7x-optical, image-stabilized gem for under $590 USD (as I did) online. Take the money that you saved and invest in a fast CF card and a spare battery, if you don't have them already, and you'll still save a bunch of cash compared to the older, heavier, bulkier, competition (Nikon, Olympus, Canon, Sony--including KM's own A2).

I'll have more to report later!

Enjoy!
Quote:
Bonedaddy,
Quote:
These are the kinds of reviews I have been looking for. The everyday users first impressions. Two things I have questions on:
Quote:
1. If you don't mind, who did you purchase your A200 from and how was the experience working with them?
Quote:
2. I have read and seen the lag between pictures when using the flash, has that been a big problem for you in practical use, or just one of those things you get used to with use?
Quote:
Thanks, Mike :-)
No problem blckthree.

I went through Butterfly Photo (www.butterflyphoto.com) on the Internet for my camera. They are fairly well-known and have a decent reputation. They also had the third or fourth lowest price on the Net at the time (the other cheaper e-tailers I'd never heard-of or seen before). The service was excellent for the most part. Be prepared to get a call from them if you've placed your order online. They do this to verify your shipping address if it happens to be different from your billing address. This also gives them the opportunity to pitch accessories and warranties at you. Stop the customer service rep dead in his tracks and tell him you don't want or need any accessories or warranties (unless you really want them!) Words of advice: if you need accessories, you can find them much cheaper elsewhere!

Butterfly gave me a pleasant surprise when they sent a confirmation e-mail saying my camera had been shipped via FedEx 2 Day service at no extra charge (I originally opted for the slower, cheaper Ground Service). My camera arrived on the day it was scheduled (and earlier than I'd expected!)

You'll want to do some price comparisons now, as the prices on the A200 have gone up since I purchased mine (and it's only been a week!) My guess is that e-tailers are starting to feel the demand for the A200, as people have had time to read the reviews and make the decision to purchase. Butterfly is no longer one of the cheapest, as they've bumped the price up to $616. You can still find the A200 for under $590, but I've no experience with any of those e-tailers listed at Pricegrabber. If at all possible, don't pay more than $600 for this camera. It's worth every penny of that, but I can't see spending crazy money for it. Alternatively, you could consider a re-furbed A2 online for about what you'd spend for a NEW A200 (if the A2 is something you think would be to your liking). Otherwise, a NEW A2 is still going for between $60-$100+ more online than the A200, which makes the A2 still over-priced. Go to Pricegrabber.com and plug in the A200 and see what you get.

As far as the flash blanking out the main LCD, so far it's not an issue. But I can see it becoming an annoyance when you don't have the time to wait for the LCD to come back. It only happens when the battery is getting low, which is understandable, considering the flash is using what little power is left in the battery to recharge itself. It does not occur with a fresh battery installed (I just tested it). Also, I only noticed this while using the main LCD. I do not know yet if a low battery condition also blanks-out the EVF (I'll test that theory later today). Bottom-line: if the LCD blanks after using the flash, use common sense and pop a fresh battery in the camera!

Happy Hunting!
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 4:37 PM   #9
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BoneDaddy,

Answered some questions, especially the flash lag and low battery deal. The one I saw in the store probably had a low battery, if a fresh one cures that problem, that should be great.

Interesting to hear that prices are going up. Must be a supply and demand thing, less supply more demand. Here I was thinking if i waited until sometime next month, prices would go down.

It may take that long to convince the wife that I need a new camera. She thinks the old 3.3mp Sony is just fine. In the mean time, I'll keep reading and watching A200 reviews and hope they don't come out with an A3 just to confuse me!

Thanks,Mike:-)
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 6:28 PM   #10
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blckthree,

Glad I could help. Now all we have to do is convince the wife that the Sony just isn't cutting it anymore. An accidental fall off the kitchen table, perhaps?

I got a chance to play around with the movie mode today. I did a few shots around the house of roughly 3-4 minutes each, in 640x480 @ 30fps and one in 800x600 @ 15fps. I watched the playback on the main LCD. The footage looked good for being viewed on an LCD, but the 800x600 had some jerkiness to it due to the slower 15fps. Otherwise the 640 mode @ 30fps was smooth and watchable. I was able to zoom at my leisure while recording, and the Anti-Shake worked just fine, keeping the image steady for me. The sound was a mixed bag. It's monaural for starters, and the mic is sensitive enough to pick-up the sliding of the zoom barrel. Loud voices tended to "boom" during playback, which may just be a result of the on-board speaker.

There was also a low-frequency "rumbling" noise coming from the camera, which I could feel as a slight vibration during recording and heard during playback. As soon as you enter the movie mode, you can feel the vibration from the handgrip. I thought that might be caused by the stabilization motor, so I switched it off. But the vibration continued. I realized that it must be the autofocus, as it's always trying to focus wherever you are pointing the camera. I set the camera down on the desk and pointed it at the wall and after a second the vibrating stopped. It's really not a bother, and the vibration can barely be felt whenever the AF is working.

Cheers!
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