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Old Aug 18, 2011, 2:01 PM   #1
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Default Thinking of buying a K5

Hi, All going to Italy in December, and was thinking about selling my mint K 7 for a K5. I'm wondering if it's worth the cost. Will be taking a lot of indoor shots, and would like to do so without a tripod. What's the highest iso that's pretty much noise free? What's a fair selling price for an absolutely mint K7 Body?
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Old Aug 18, 2011, 3:11 PM   #2
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Don't ask me about selling prices for the K7, there's lots of places to try to figure that out (completed ebay auctions come to mind).

As far as highest ISO - depends on whether you want to use noise reduction software and how you normally expose your shots. If you expose more "to the right" on the histogram you'll have less noise. If you use good noise reduction programs you'll be able to go higher also. Do you shoot raw or jpg? Shooting jpg and changing the in-camera noise reduction settings makes a difference, while shooting raw it doesn't. Also what's your tolerance for noise and how big are you going to be printing? All these are factors when talking about noise - if you aren't going to print larger than 4x6, you won't notice noise as much as you would if you were to print a poster.

I use noise reduction software (Denoise) because I have a low tolerance to noise. I leave my camera set to auto ISO with 12,500 my ceiling. I found 16,000 too noisy for me, even with noise reduction software. Properly exposed shots at ISO 5,000-8,000 usually gets processed through Denoise, but not always. I rarely bother with software at 3,200 and below.

I think it is worth the upgrade. Picture quality is much better, there's often an extra something (can't explain) that I can see with K5 pictures (not always, just sometimes). Noticeable better detail in shadows straight out of the camera.
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Old Aug 18, 2011, 4:52 PM   #3
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Thanks. Wheres the best place to buy the K5?
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Old Aug 18, 2011, 10:24 PM   #4
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If you're close to a brick & mortar camera shop that sells Pentax gear, I think it's worth buying from them, even though they will probably charge more than the major on-line sellers. Living in a very small town a long way from a metropolitan area, I don't have that luxury.
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Old Aug 18, 2011, 11:20 PM   #5
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I know of no store here in Orlando that carries Pentax. Guess it would be B/H Photo again.
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Old Aug 19, 2011, 1:36 AM   #6
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I have been quietly sitting on the sidelines using my K20, which I apply to the worst situations for it - ambient low light in the evening, and suffer noise even at ISO 100. The better dynamic range and resistance to noise would certainly help along with better but not perfect auto focus would be a plus. All of that said, it still depends on the light and your the way you compose that will determine if you can get away with out a tripod for any particular image.

In terms of price - B&H along with Adroama are always safe. Then there is the internet - it all depends on price. I happened across a K5 body only the other day for $1080. Here is the link - I don't know anything about them, but I did look them up on resellers rating because I was curious. YMMV
Then, here is the obligatory google list...
Since you already have a K7 you know about the egronomics. Also, over on the Pentax Forums, early on with the K5, someone did a lot of work with high ISO and various noise reduction utilities and the results. There was one package that provided extremely good results, really cleaned up the images even at 51K. That may be worth looking into acquiring also.


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Old Aug 19, 2011, 9:48 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the info.
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Old Aug 19, 2011, 10:33 AM   #8
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I've bought cameras from Amazon (being a prime member I'll buy directly from them, not one of their affiliates) and B&H (always a joy to deal with them and I've bought several cameras from them over the years, including my last film camera). I've bought lenses from Adorama also. I bought the K5 from a local shop, the only one in SoCal that carries Pentax, who matched the Amazon price I had seen (very nice of them). You can't really go wrong with any of them.
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Old Aug 19, 2011, 1:12 PM   #9
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Thanks. B/H is probably my best bet. Pretty expensive though.
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Old Aug 19, 2011, 4:12 PM   #10
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Both B&H and Adorama are quite reputable, and have always been very helpful on the few occasions when returns were necessary. For me, it's worth a bit higher price for the peace of mind..
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