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Old Mar 10, 2011, 2:14 PM   #1
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Default silver K-5 now available

Email from Pentax the K-5 silver edition is now available . . . at $1699! My black one just arrived two days ago - I got impatient (and just before I read the report on the low light problems), but B&H had dropped their price to $1399 - is the silver worth $300 more? I will admit the grip on this one is rather skimpy, so the reshaped one on the silver model might be an improvement. I also noticed there is a separate listing for it on the Pentax firmware download page, so might there be some other differences?
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Old Mar 10, 2011, 3:18 PM   #2
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It's surprising that the silver has a different firmware download page, unless they did that because it ships with 1.03 and by listing it separately you won't have people downloading it unnecessarily.

I had a bit of trouble adjusting to the smaller grip on the K7/K5, but now find it quite comfortable. It did take getting used to though. I wouldn't think the silver is worth that much of a premium, but it sure looks good!

I've just installed 1.03 and haven't yet tested it in low light conditions where I knew the camera would front focus (for my camera it was influenced by lens and type of light). My first check was with the DA*50-135 and it's always been accurate (after fine tuning the AF, it backfocuses a bit always). I personally haven't been too bothered by the front focusing issue - I only ran across the problem once or twice. I did have something else really strange go on that I never quite tracked down and now can't recreate it so I'm not worried. Just have a great time with the camera.
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Old Mar 10, 2011, 4:48 PM   #3
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Penolta - congratulations on the new camera (even if it isn't silver). Will look forward to seeing some of your great photos with it!

Harriet - hope the new firmware solves any focus problems.
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Old Mar 10, 2011, 7:16 PM   #4
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Penolta - congratulations on the new camera (even if it isn't silver).
Thanks, Mole. I really have too many cameras now - if you or anyone else is in the market for a good K10 body, PM me. I can add a lens if needed.
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Old Mar 10, 2011, 9:34 PM   #5
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Hey, a K20D is my "new" camera but I do have a silver one, my old *istDL (okay, so it is silver coloured plastic). Seriously I really like the silver K5 look but $300 is a steep premium to pay (rather academic in my case since I do not have the budget for a camera in that price range at the moment). Since I can't afford the magnesium bodied K5, silverized plastic shall have to keep me happy. (BTW the silver FA 28-105mm f3.2-4.5 IF AL lens looks very cool on this camera, again, plastic, not the nice shiny metal of an FA limited)
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Old Mar 10, 2011, 11:40 PM   #6
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New firmware made a difference for my camera. Tried it tonight and I'm quite satisfied - the only place I really noticed the front focusing was in my den and I took several pictures at different distances with a lens that I had noticed problems in the past with, and all are in focus. Not all of them are without camera shake though...

I've only had trouble with the low-light front focusing issue a couple of times - there's only been a couple of times I've seen it since the light has to be really, really low and I hardly ever photograph in those conditions. Now I won't think about it.

Unfortunately, I found another problem today. I was thinking about this month's challenge and trying to do some distance/perspective sleight of hand. In order to pull it off with the selection of lenses I had in the bag, I needed to use a small aperture. I had previously checked my camera for stains when I first got it at the end of December, and again the beginning of February. I knew that mine was within the date range of cameras that could be affected (according to the press release by Pentax), given it's manufacture date, but thought I would be OK since I hadn't seen any sign of it after a month. I don't use video, though I do use live view on occasion. As I was reviewing some of my lunch pictures this evening, I noticed a ragged line in one location, when that point was in the sky. Tested the camera this evening and saw I had some dust on the sensor. Blew it off and the dust disappeared - but the ragged line remains. Looked at 100% and it looks like the "stains" I've seen posted by others. Sigh! Guess I better dig out the receipt and print a return label.

This week hasn't been my week - as I was deleting something from an external hard drive that I also use for back-ups there was a power outage. The hard drive is dead, and the budget stretched to the limit once again. Oh well, these little downers make the successes all that much more thrilling.
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Old Mar 10, 2011, 11:49 PM   #7
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Over here there is only a US$100 difference between the silver & the black ... and I thought that was wrong ! US$300 more is obscene for coloured plastic.

I will eventually be buying another K5 to replace the K7 but not the silver at an inflated price.
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Old Mar 11, 2011, 1:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Tested the camera this evening and saw I had some dust on the sensor. Blew it off and the dust disappeared - but the ragged line remains. Looked at 100% and it looks like the "stains" I've seen posted by others. Sigh! Guess I better dig out the receipt and print a return label.

This week hasn't been my week - as I was deleting something from an external hard drive that I also use for back-ups there was a power outage. The hard drive is dead, and the budget stretched to the limit once again. Oh well, these little downers make the successes all that much more thrilling.
Definitely not your best week. Too bad about the sensor. As for the power failure, you should have a UPS (Uninteruptable Power Supply) to plug your computer into. It is a battery backup that gives you time to exit your programs and shut off your computer, and is a worthwhile purchase - one has saved me many times.


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Over here there is only a US$100 difference between the silver & the black ... and I thought that was wrong ! US$300 more is obscene for coloured plastic.
Pentax Imaging's price has a difference of $100, but retailers are beginning to discount the black K-5, but not (yet?) the silver one.
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Old Mar 11, 2011, 2:47 PM   #9
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Quote:
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...This week hasn't been my week - as I was deleting something from an external hard drive that I also use for back-ups there was a power outage. The hard drive is dead, and the budget stretched to the limit once again.
Dead, as in won't spin up at all? If so, chances are, the hard drive is fine and the external enclosure power supply or electronics is the culprit. They usually fail before the circuitry on the drive itself.

I'd try removing the drive from the enclosure and see if it works plugged into a port on your PC (SATA or IDE, depending on drive type). If it works fine, just get a new external enclosure for it.

Personally, I just use the docking station type enclosures. That way, I can use bare drives for backups (which are less expensive compared to buying drives with enclosures, and lets me easily swap drives around so that I have more than one backup copy). I use a Thermaltake BlacX docking station and buy bare SATA drives.

Note that USB 2.0 attached docking stations are the slowest. So, I'd go eSATA or USB 3.0 instead.

See the Thermaltake BlacX models here:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...rder=BESTMATCH

If buying a new docking station, I'd probably go USB 3.0. For example, this one:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-133-_-Product

You can get a USB 3.0 card for around $30 now.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...CE&Pagesize=20

Note that you can also use a USB 3.0 docking station on a PC or laptop that only has USB 2.0 ports. You'd only get USB 2.0 speed that way. But, that makes them more compatible with more devices (since most any modern desktop or laptop is going to have USB 2.0 ports, and not as many are going to have eSATA or Firewire (other popular solutions for external drives).

These docking stations are easy to use. You can buy bare SATA drives and plug them right in and they show up as removable drives (and most support both 2.5" and 3.5" SATA drives).
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Old Mar 11, 2011, 2:56 PM   #10
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Ooops. You're using a Mac, right?

AFAIK, USB 3.0 drivers are not yet available for OS X (although they are for both Windows and Linux). NEC manufacturers the chipsets that major motherboard and add-on card manufacturers use for USB 3.0 support. Linux started supporting it in newer kernels beginning year before last, followed by Windows last year. But, I don't think USB 3.0 drivers are available for OS X yet.

Apple has apparently resisted the new USB 3.0 (5Gbps) standard in order to promote the latest "Thunderbolt" (10Gbps) interface instead, even though USB ports are already available on most machines, and faster (5Gbps) USB 3.0 devices are backwards compatible with slower (480Mbps) USB 2.0 ports, making it a good bet for better compatibility with more existing hardware. Apple apparently doesn't see it that way. IOW, if you go with a USB 3.0 enclosure, expect to use it at USB 2.0 speeds (as I don't think USB 3.0 support is a big priority with Apple right now).

So, you'd probably want to go eSATA if you have that port type. If not, I'd probably look at Firewire attached enclosures instead (as that would probably be a faster option for a Mac compared to USB 2.0).

You'll find lots and lots of them at vendors like newegg.com (just pick the right one for the drive size you have in your existing external enclosure, and pick one with the fastest external interface type your Mac has available).

http://www.newegg.com/Store/SubCateg...nal-Enclosures

In any event, chances are, the drive is fine and the enclosure electronics just failed due to the power surge. So, removing the drive from it and installing it in another enclosure would probably let you use it (in most cases, the enclosure electronics will fail before the drive electronics with a power surge related issue).
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