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Old Jul 9, 2009, 3:37 AM   #1
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Default Is E510 a serious improvement over K100D?

Hi everybody,

My Pentax K100D is malfunctioning (pink lines and discolorations in every 10th shot or so) and I have a chance to get an almost new E510 for $350CAN. I will be going on a trip soon, so I don't have time to repair the Pentax. How is the 510? Is it really much of a step up from my old camera? (I know, I know, its broken but its still never fun to spend money on something that won't give me anything new...) Also, how bulky/attention-grabbing is it? I'll be in some Eastern European countries that the crisis hit pretty bad and I wouldn't want to get mugged over a camera. This last concern has me thinking about the new Ep1 and its ilk, but it really seems foolish to pay that kind of money for that just now *sigh*.

If you guys have any opinions or recommendations, I'd like to hear them as I've got to make up my mind pretty soon.

Oh, and I didn't buy any lenses beside the kit lens for the Pentax, so thats not really an issue here.

Thank you for your time,

- Bpp
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Old Jul 9, 2009, 7:00 AM   #2
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I suspect there are few people that would call the Olympus E-510 an improvement over your Pentax. It has a slower autofocus system, more noise at higher ISO settings, and a smaller selection of lenses and accessories.
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Old Jul 9, 2009, 5:31 PM   #3
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I would agree - the E-510's sensor is smaller and I thought the sample pictures had more noise than those from the K100 (check the various reviews, like here at Steve's). The noise issue might not be a big thing for you. The multiplication factor is 2X instead of 1.5, so it's harder to get wide angle lenses (but easier to get a long lens field of view). Because of the smaller sensor size and the focal length/field of view difference, the E-510 would have a larger depth of field for the same field of view picture (all other things being equal). That can be advantagious for some people, but can cause problems if you want to separate a subject from its background. It's certainly a capable camera but I wouldn't call it an upgrade - more of a lateral move, with some advantages and some disadvantages.
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Old Jul 9, 2009, 5:51 PM   #4
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The better Olympus option at this point would be the E520 if you are looking for something economical. Even better would be the E620. It costs a little more, but you'd be set for a good while.

The E510 is just buggy enough....it needs to be set up right to get good results. Plenty of people do use them and I have seen some excellent images shot with E510's, but there's a lot out there by Olympus today (and Pentax) that would be considerably better. I just don't think the money would be well spent on the E510.
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Old Jul 9, 2009, 8:49 PM   #5
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Here are a couple of options....

Best Buy (online) has Factory Refurbished K100D for $280

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage....ci_sku=9348752

They also have refurbished K200 - $379 and K10 for $399

KEH.com also has a few K100D and Supers available for between $275 - $350

http://www.keh.com/OnLineStore/Produ...&GBC=&GCC=&KW=

Just a thought...
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Old Jul 9, 2009, 9:45 PM   #6
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Is E510 a serious improvement over K100D?

I'd say no. I'd say one may be better at one thing, and the other may excel at something different. I doubt you'll see much difference in AF speed in good light. That, of course, is lens dependent.

The E510 has a bit of a reputation of clipping highlights. Its default settings have an agressive tone curve that contributes to that, and the sharpening aggrivates it farther. In addition, high ISO performance generally scales with sensor area, so the pentax is likely to do better there too.

The Oly excels with the Zuiko lenses. The kit lenses are great, and if zooms are your thing, they do them as well as anyone. The glass is why I've stuck with Olympus.

I don't know what your invested in with Pentax. Once you already own lenses, it would require an un-fullfilled need to switch if it were me. I don't see a reason to switch between the cameras you mention, but you may see it differently.

I agree with Greg from above. If you want an Oly, the E520 is a better camera at similar prices. It would be wise to spend a few extra buck IMO.

Greg
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Old Jul 10, 2009, 1:08 AM   #7
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Thanks guys,

Collectively, you have convinced me not to purchase this camera. My camera may not be working at a hundred percent and this may be a good deal - but spending hundreds of dollars on something that isn't actually better just doesn't sit right. Instead, I'm going to put that money towards an upgrade. Right now, the new E-P1 is looking awfully tempting. A few of the reviewers have scraped the point that it may be wise to wait for a price-drop before purchasing that camera as the current price is rather high. How long does it usually take for prices to fall (is there even a pattern)? Also, how much are they likely to come down once they do?

- Bpp
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Old Jul 10, 2009, 7:06 AM   #8
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I wouldn't call the E-P1 an improvement over what you have now, either.
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Old Jul 10, 2009, 9:48 AM   #9
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As an Olympus user, the E-P1 in no way is a substtute for a DSLR. It's a cute intermediate model, but you need to look past the cuteness/design-of-the-minute styling and take a hard look at whether it really is something you need to be seriously considering.

The E-P1 is something to me that either (1) someone who already has a DSLR buys instead of a point & shoot as a light weight alternative to their main system, or (2) someone who does not own a DSLR and has no desire to own a DSLR buys to have something that can give DSLR-type image quality for a smaller, easier to carry kit.

If you really fall into the #2 camp and want to replace your DSLR entirely and never go back to that type camera, I could see how the E-P1 appeals, but in many ways other than image quality the E-P1 will continue to be as frustrating in use as a point & shoot digicam. The back LCD is no revolutionary design in terms of resolution or performance. The LCD on my Panasonic TZ5 is nicer and probably is not that much slower in operation....something that was just brought up at another site in a post regarding the operation of the E-P1..

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=32363373

You won't be shooting much action with this camera...the sporting type or probably even kids running around playing.

Last edited by Greg Chappell; Jul 10, 2009 at 11:00 AM.
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Old Jul 11, 2009, 3:00 AM   #10
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At the root of your problem is funny red lines right?

It's possible that your camera needs to be repaired or replaced if repair is uneconomical. BUT...

It's possible that you have a problem with you memory card or card reader. Are the red lines visible on the camera LCD as well as your PC? If not then simply getting a new card and reader may "fix" your camera. If the lines are visible on the LCD and the PC then your camera needs repairing.
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