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Old Dec 1, 2009, 8:12 PM   #1
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Default Canon 500D Vs Pentax Kx

Looking between the the Canon 500D and Pentax Kx. I currently have a Pentax K100D Super and am looking to upgrade. I have a bunch of lenses for Pentax including a 50mm 1.7 SMC. I also have two pretty good lenses for Canon that would work with the 500D. I'm looking to get into portrait and low light/stage lit concert photography, but also am a pretty round photographer, so I need something that will produce good 11x14's or so in low light. I found the KX for $599 for body and the kit lense and the Canon for $689 with kit lens. If anybody could give me advice that would be great.
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Old Dec 1, 2009, 8:31 PM   #2
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Both cameras should be capable of what you're looking for. The challenge with log light concert photography is going to be:
1) are you even allowed to use your DSLR
2) will you be close enough to the stage to use a wide aperture prime lens (I wouldn't want to be more than 15 feet away to use something like a 50mm lens).

Those problems exist regardless of camera system.
You didn't mention what canon lenses you have available so can't say how good they are or what other pentax lenses you have. But I would suggest lenses and camera ergonomics are the deciding factor. The two bodies are fairly comparable with regard to what you'll be using them for.
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Old Dec 1, 2009, 8:53 PM   #3
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I'm not actually sure of the Canon lenses, haha. I've been using Pentax for about 12 years so I'm pretty familiar with the lenses but find it pretty sad that the 50mm DA 1.4 lens doubled in price to $300 some. Most of the concerts will be small concerts of friends and fledgling bands so distance isn't a big deal, neither is the use of a DSLR in in setting. Otherwise I have a Vivitar Series 1 I think 3.8 300mm that I can use with a tripod.
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Old Dec 2, 2009, 3:34 PM   #4
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Too add to what JohnG wrote, a lot of places do not allow SLR's.
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Old Dec 3, 2009, 8:09 AM   #5
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at the moment, I am also unsure which of those two dslrs to chose - does anybody know, how they differ? Apart from the HD and Full HD Video..
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Old Dec 3, 2009, 9:27 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by santuris View Post
at the moment, I am also unsure which of those two dslrs to chose - does anybody know, how they differ? Apart from the HD and Full HD Video..
Megapixels: Canon 15, Pentax 12
The reality is though this is not a decided advantage - I wouldn't say that difference matters

Both have same ISO availability. I wouldn't expect too much difference in RAW image quality at high ISOs. Unknown at this point how well the JPEG conversion is on the K-X with regards to noise. Again, unless you're planning a lot of ISO 3200-6400 type shooting I wouldn't stress about it either way.

Image Stabilization - K-X has in-body stabilization. 500D requires lens stabalization - but kit lens and optional 55-250 lens (camera currently sells with deal from Canon - buy the 55-250 and get immediate $200 rebate so you get the 55-250 for $50). The advantage goes to K-X for short prime lenses - they would be stabilized. Not so with Canon. But consumer grade zoom lenses (like kit and 55-250) have IS.

AF - Canon has a 9 point array and Pentax an 11 point. Can't offer much of an opinion on the array layout differences. But expect the Canon to have better focus tracking and better low light focusing than the K-X. Again, be careful here - if you're not shooting moving subjects or doing a lot of low light I doubt you'd ever see a difference in focus performance.

Exposure Compensation - Canon has +/1 2 stops while Pentax has +/- 5 stops.

Burst: 3.5 for Canon, 4.7 for Nikon

Viewfinder - about same coverage/magnification for both

LCD - Canon 920,000. Pentax 230,000. So, better resolution on the Canon LCD

From a system standpoint, I would say Pentax and Canon stack up as follows:

Pentax Pros:
  • Can use any pentax lens ever made. So if you are ok with manual focus and sometimes manual aperture lenses you can pick up various lenses on the used market
  • Good ergonomics
  • enthusiastic and helpful user base. The Pentax forum here is, by far, the most active gear forum at Steves.
  • in-body IS
Canon Pros:
  • Superior AF system in tracking moving subjects and in low light
  • Wider selection of available, NEW, autofocus lenses - largest selection of any manufacturer
  • More sophisticated camera upgrade path - including full frame cameras and professional quality DSLRs.
  • Easier to find gear at local camera stores so you can try out lenses and such before buying.
  • Better external flash system.
  • Significantly larger market share - more stable future as a DSLR producer. In 2008, Canon had 38% market share, Pentax had 4% In reality, I think the next 2 years will go a long way in determining Pentax' future. Sony blasted past them and Oly into 3rd place. The K-7 and K-X are exciting products but only time will tell if they can result in any increase in market share.
Why do I mention systems? Because DSLR buying is NOT like digicam buying. Lenses, flashes are all part of it. And those components outlive the camera bodies you buy. I've owned 3 DSLRs and I'm still using lenses I used on the first DSLR I owned. If I had switched systems it would have cost me more money to do so.
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Old Dec 4, 2009, 7:38 AM   #7
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Thanks for this large comparison...Iīve been to a tech-store yesterday to get a feel of those two cameras. When I read your post right, you would lean towards the canon. From the reviews iīve read so far, the image quality itself seems to be better than the one of the K-X.

Sadly, the K-X on display was non-functional at the store, since they didnīt have any spare batteries, so I was not able to check the menu-design and alike. Well, guess I will have to choose then and to look for a suitable kit-lens which is leaning towards the "wide angle" section
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Old Dec 4, 2009, 7:18 PM   #8
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I'm really looking for low light performance and I suspect either is camera is suitable. Does anybody know how the two compare at ISO 6400 as far as sharpness and lack of noise? I most likely wouldn't be using the 12,800 ISO on either due to the fact that neither produce very good quality in that range.
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Old Dec 6, 2009, 1:15 PM   #9
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Under what situations will you be shooting that you plan on using ISO 6400?
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