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Old Sep 23, 2008, 7:38 PM   #1
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Ok, first things first. Here are the ground rules and clarifying statements.

1. I by no means want to start a flame war. I am asking for honest opinions.
2. I currently have K20D and I am about 70% happy with it.

Now on with the show...

I am loosing a bit of my love with the K20D in several areas.

1. I am not pleased with the K2000 announcement, I think it is muddying the waters.
2. I have some nagging issues with the hole Pentax being eaten by Hoya thing. Nothing firm but I just don't have good long term feelings about Pentax products.
3. I can't say that in some areas. Especially AF accuracy and speed that Pentax is increasing my love for it. More and more now I am having AF issues not just with the accuracy but with the speed as well.
4. I am not thrilled with the selection of accessories available for the Pentax. If you look at not only the selection of currently produced lenses (I won't use film lenses with a dSLR) as well as third party options Pentax lags far behind. This is worry some enough that I have started to think about switching to Nikon.
5. I am bothered by the lack of a new K20D successor. Instead they went for an even lower end toy in the K2000. While I am not a fan of a yearly upgrade I have to wonder why all of a sudden they stopped doing that. There should have been a K30D especially given some of the weaknesses in Pentax (AF, Shot Speed, etc.)

I am considering the Nikon D90 with the VR kit lens. I am hearing good things about the AF speed and accuracy. I am also hearing good things about the overall picture quality. Yes, it is a small step back in resolution, which is an issue as I do a lot of extreme cropping and overall love the resolution and image quality from the K20D.

I am however, concerned that Pentax as a brand and a system just isn't a safe bet to invest in any more. Look how long it has taken them to get a ring flash out and given the cheap construction of their regular flashes for the price I have to say that is a conern.

So I would like some opinions. I want to look at this from all angles and make sure I am not missing something important. I do know that I will have to buy new lenses and without the in body shake reduction I will have a limited selection of lenses with VR and they will be more costly. But, I am starting to feel that Nikon is a better long term investment than Pentax.

Comments?

Robert
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Old Sep 23, 2008, 7:50 PM   #2
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Input? You can probably recite the pros and cons to this argument in your sleep Robert. Nikon is certainly a more stable bet than Pentax, Nikon's market share is large enough that their top CEO types don't have insomnia. Which camera is right for you is a very personal question. I have a friend who downgraded from a Nikon D2x (when that was Nikon's flagship) to a Canon 20D and is much happier, it was the right camera for him.

You have listed most of the positives (in body SR, resolution, image quality) and negatives (available accessories and lenses) of the Pentax system and K20d in particular. Now you just have to decide which is most important.

Tim
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Old Sep 23, 2008, 7:57 PM   #3
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Robert Barnett wrote:
Quote:
More and more now I am having AF issues not just with the accuracy but with the speed as well.
...I won't use film lenses with a dSLR) as well as third party options Pentax lags far behind.
Guess I'll be the first to take a crack at this...what specific AF issues are you having? Low light (are you using the popup flash as an AF assist lamp)? Predictive AF?
And what lenses are you missing?
And what subject matter are you taking photos of?

All current cameras can pretty much take photos of everything but some will have a higher percentage of keepers in certain situations...

p.s., Pentax has nearly always lagged Canon/Nikon's big body upgrades by about 6 months. They rarely release competitive bodies at the same time is what it seems...

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Old Sep 23, 2008, 8:26 PM   #4
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I tested a Nikon D300 for several weeks prior to deciding to stay with the Pentax K20D this past summer. If you are interested in my detailed assessment, it can be found here: http://forums.steves-digicams.com/fo...ghlight=jelpee

When it came down to it, for my type of use (I.e. no strong requirement for high FPS), the K20D was the right choice. As for longetivity, I am not that brand loyal. I do not have enough invested in it that should there be suffient reason that I would consider other options. Pentax is serving me very well these days and I could not find enough reason to migrate to Nikon or an alternate brand.

FYI, I have not experienced any issues with the AF. With the SDM lenses, I find the auto focus to be plenty fast (especially compared to my DL).

Hope this helps!

Jay
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Old Sep 23, 2008, 8:55 PM   #5
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Each to his own my friend. I like Pentax and will probably stay with them but I am not you. It boils down to what you want to do. Your money and your decision. I do use film lenses and in the near future they will be in vogue again with the full frame sensors that are coming. Yes they will be here eventually...As for an investment...I like the fact that all lenses ever made for a Pentax will stil be usable even on the new models. But don't ask me to put you down for moving over to Nikon if that is the way you wish to go. Nothing wrong with a Nikon or a Canon for that matter. It will still be the photographer that makes the difference. I know.....I'm not much help...but these are my honest opinions and I feel that is what you wanted. Which ever way you go, have fun and enjoy the photo gear you use!

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Old Sep 23, 2008, 9:28 PM   #6
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This will sound sort of funny, but go with your feelings! Otherwise you will always have the nagging suspicion that you could be having a better experience with something else. That can ruin the fun of the hobby.
Glenn
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Old Sep 24, 2008, 12:13 AM   #7
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kenyee,

It isn't that I am missing anything in the lens department it is the fact that the number of choices is more limiting. I have already invested probably $2000 in lenses, but I am concerned that Pentax seems to have a much more limited view of what lenses they need to offer. One I would love to see is a 50-500 like the sigma. A 10mm that isn't fisheye.

By having more options and choices from the maker of your camera I feel it makes the system more viable and future proof. Yes, it is impressive that you can use so many old Pentax lenses with the new dSLR's but those are old lenses and often create limits.

As for the AF, it is low light and I don't like having the flash up and I shouldn't have to risk blinding my subject because Pentax was too cheap to add in a dedicated focus assist lamp.

Focusing even with their latest lenses is slow to the point I find myself missing shots. I am also beginning to wonder about the small number of focus points. I know the D90 doesn't have a lot either, but it has more than the Pentax and if you look at the little higher end ones you have 40 or more. I find even in good shadow the thing has trouble with focus lock.

Robert
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Old Sep 24, 2008, 12:18 AM   #8
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jelpee,

I can understand about the brand loyalty. My concern is that I am at the point that I am uncomfortable investing more money in the Pentax system as I am affraid that Pentax will do something that will make me have to switch. I am not made of money and I really can't afford to junk a $4000 system for another having to buy new lenses and stuff every few years.

I originally chose Pentax over the others because of the in camera stablization. I considered Sony and ruled them out as way too big a risk and I still consider Sony a big risk. Canon I don't think has been all that innovative. Nikon either at least not as much as Pentax, but I am still concerned about investing in a system that I have longevity concerns about.

Nikon I think is arrogant and for the most part just puts out enough of an update to get buy but they don't seem to be shattering any records either. But, I think they have a much more stable future. While I can see Olympus, Pentax, Sony and others going belly up or being bought up, etc. I don't see this happening with Nikon or Canon. But, then 10 years ago I would have said the same about Kodak and they have all but bought the farm so who knows. We just have to make the best "gut" feeling guess we can. My gut is having some not so great feelings about Pentax.

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Old Sep 24, 2008, 12:24 AM   #9
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bigdawg,

Honesty is exactly what I wanted. No chest puffing because one feels threatened by the idea that a certain brand may or may not be the right one for someone else.

My problem with the older lenses is that a lot of them have limitations. You can use it in this mode or that mode. You have to manual focus, use the green button, etc. I want full automatic lenses and that very much limits what you can use. I also don't want to fool with adapters either.

I also personally feel the new K2000 is just a really bad move as are the cheap-o lenses they are putting out for it. I think they were better of advancing the K200 and K20D lines instead of muddying the waters with cheap. This concerns me. I tells me that Hoya maybe more concerned with the bottom dollar instead of putting out innovative, affordable products that are really worth buying. There are enough cheap cameras (including dSLR's) I don't think Pentax needed one too. The price of the K200D is a good entry level price point for what it does and offer. <shrug>

Robert
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Old Sep 24, 2008, 12:26 AM   #10
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The one thing I am now considering is holding on to my Pentax system for another year and see what happens with the full frame thing with Canon and Nikon coming out with sub $3000 offerings.

I am not sold on the whole full frame is the panacea thing, but I do like the higher resolution. As I said I do some very extreme cropping and resolution for me is important if I want to do that and print a 13x19" print and have it look good. 25 to 30MP would be what I am looking for. Beyond that I could careless at least until we have much larger format printers in the $1000 range, that I think is some ways off, probably 5 to 10 years or more.

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