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Old Oct 16, 2006, 11:02 PM   #1
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Hello all,

Well after reading countless reviews, holding everything under the sun a few times over, and having read what seems like thousands of message board posts I still cannot break the tie between these two cameras...

Want a good all purpose low cost DSLR and narrowed it down to the Nikon D50 and Pentax K100...like the build of the K100 better but worry about the performance in action as more than a few mention the buffer size issue when compared to others in its class.

Also wondering how useful anti shake will be...mostly taking pictures of baby daughter for now and maybe alot of macro.


The D50 I like:

Nikon brand

Feel in Hand

Performance

Aftermarket



Pentax

The build

The viewfinder

The LCD display

Battery options though this could bea minus depending on cost

Thoughts appreciated, thanks
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Old Oct 16, 2006, 11:29 PM   #2
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If you prefer the feel and performance of the Nikon, then get it.

I'm not sure what you are referring to when you say "aftermarket" as an advantage for the Nikon - are you referring to third party lenses? Many of the third party lens makers put out the same lens in both Nikon and Pentax mounts. Up until recently you could occasionally find the same lens for less in the Pentax mount, though as the Pentax cameras get more popular I would expect that advantage to go away.

I have the Pentax DS and the K100D. I find the SR helps quite a bit with macros - I can handhold and get more "keepers" with the K100D than I did with the DS. It also gave me the confidence to buy a long lens that I knew I wouldn't be able to control otherwise. For me, the SR means quite a bit, and I'm very happy with my K100D.

Both are nice cameras, but it sounds like you'd prefer the Nikon. So quit thinking about it, go to a camera store and buy a camera. Think of all the pictures you are missing by thinking about all this!
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Old Oct 17, 2006, 12:39 AM   #3
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Mathew

the buffer size of my Pentax DSLR is not an issue when I shoot motorsport, which is my speciality.

The battery question is easy, I use rechargable 2500mAh, NmHi and one set will last a whole day of virtually non stop shooting, over a thousand images.

As well as a spare set in the camera bag my Sigma flashgun uses four AA batteries, so they are another reserve set.

As for aftermarket items, as mentioned Sigma produce lenses and flashguns for Pentax, although for K100 be careful as it needs a Sigma that will function in P-TTL mode, not the older TTL mode.

After market lenses are are plentiful for the Pentax, including a vast array of quality used lenses. I use a selection of original Vivitar Series 1, Vivitar, Tokina,Sigma, Hanimex Soligor, Tamron and Pentax lenses.

Phil
http://www.kartpic.com
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Old Oct 17, 2006, 2:58 AM   #4
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mtngal - I don't know if I prefer the performance of the Nikon as I have never used it IRL, only a few quick shots in the store, I am only going off info that is available in reviews. I think that I am more familiar with the Nikon brand but I like the feel of the Pentax camera better, and the feature set of the Pentax seems like a better buy, I just was wondering if for what I am looking for which would be the best bet.



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Old Oct 17, 2006, 8:14 AM   #5
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From your original post I would think either camera would work well for you. If it were me, I'd choose the one that felt better in my hands, that seemed to be the most comfortable to use.

As far as name recognition, my boyfriend of the time bought me a Pentax ME in 1980. That meant that I was well aware of how good Pentax cameras can be (still had a couple of lenses from that camera, along with my father's lenses for his ME Super). But I went to the store with the idea I was going to get the Canon Rebel. However, after handling all 3 (looked at the Nikon too) I decided that the Pentax fit my hands best, and I couldn't be happier (and it was cheaper, too).
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Old Oct 17, 2006, 8:56 AM   #6
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I've never tried the Nikon so I can't comment on it. But I do own the Pentax K100D and I am also a first time DSLR user. I can tell you that I am extremely happy with it. The camera has a great feel to it. I like it's size, weight, and ergonomics. I was also surprised how easy it is to learn. I honestly expected to keep the camera in Full-Auto mode for a long time. But between the informative owner's manual, the easy to navigate camera menus, and the wealth of knowledge available on this forum, I have been able to start using many of the manual settings with great success already. The shake reduction (for me) is a real God-send. Like mtngal said, it gives you many more "keepers". It's available at a great price and there are tons of reasonably priced lenses available from Pentax as well as 3rd party such as Tamron or Sigma. I feel I made a great choice in selecting the K100D, and I think you'd feel the same. Good luck with your decision.
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Old Oct 17, 2006, 11:25 AM   #7
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It might depend on how much action/sports shooting you really plan on doing.

The in camera optical stabilization in the Pentax is a big advantage. To get the equivalent in the Nikon you have to get individually stabilized lenses, and it seems to add quite a bit to the lens prices.

The only big advantage I see with the Nikon is for action and sports photography where you would want the faster autofocus and the better buffer for continuous shooting.

Some of the better lenses available for Nikon will be labeled AF-S. The "S" is for "Silent-Wave Motor" (also SWM). Some third party lense with this feature are labeled HSM (Hyper Sonic Motor). In Canon it is called USM (Ulta Sonic Motor). These lenses contain an in camera motor which provides quicker (and quieter) focusing. This feature is not supported by Pentax or Olympus cameras.

That said, for somethig like taking pictures of your daughter, I expect the stabilization would be more important. The focus speed and buffer will probably be plenty in that suituation. If you want to do much shooting of things like football games, or soccer or tennis matches, you might get more good shots with the Nikon (and maybe some pricier lenses).

I think the Pentax will provide more bang for your buck now at the entry level, though. The better third party lense are generally available in the Pentax mount, and there are plenty of inexpensive older used lenses that are very useable. There will be less selection of new Pentax branded lenses, compared to Nikon brand, but most of the ones available tend to be well built and provide very good value. And they all end up stabilized at no extra cost.

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Old Oct 17, 2006, 11:52 AM   #8
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Well said kenbalbari. You made some very good points. I just want to address one thing that you mentioned and has been mentioned by others as well. Everyone keeps talking about the smaller buffer on the K100D as being a big disadvantage for action shots. Here's what I've come to realize:

Yes, it's true that the K100D will only take about 3 to 5 shots before the buffer is full and things slow down. But it takes those first 3 to 5 shots just as quickly as most DSLRs out there. In my experience, even the small gap between those shots is enough to miss themoment you wantedif they aren't timed correctly. The "window of opportunity" for the shot you want in most fast-action sports is over within the first one to two seconds anyway. Therefore, planning for the shot becomes way more important than just clicking away hoping to capture it in the burst. I've found that 99% of the time, the very first shot is the one I wanted. I had read the remarks about the K100D not being the best choice for fast action and I was really worried about it when I ordered my camera. I have not found it to be a problem at all.




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Old Oct 17, 2006, 3:04 PM   #9
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Thanks all,

I actually decided to just order the K100 today, saw the price start creeping up and wanted to get on board before it got out of my budget...thanks for the advice I will let you know how it is once it arrives.
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