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Old Mar 9, 2010, 4:09 PM   #1
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Default Pentax KX or Canon T2I

Hello all,
I've been lurking this site for the last couple of days and decided to finally ask for some help. I am a newbie to DSLR so bear with me.

I have been looking at these two cameras; Pentax K-X and Canon T2I.

I have a few questions/concerns regarding my DSLR purchase.

1. I am mostly concerned about buying into a particular brand/system. Primarily looking into the future. I want to purchase a brand that I can grow into, saying 2-3 years from now, I can upgrade my camera body and still use the lenses I might have purchased. For example, I don't want to buy into the Pentax system, then 2-3 years later have to jump ship to a Canon system.

2. As for shooting style, I'm not too sure about this one as of yet. I would rate them as follows:
  • Indoor / Spontaneous - Friends and Family
  • Travel / Outdoor
  • Action - Sporting events
  • Low Light - Night city shots
  • Video - Not a priority, but would be nice to have
3. Accessories / Lenses - I understand Canon has a large amount of the market share, correct me if I'm wrong, but I do not want this to be my deciding factor. Are there equivalent lenses and accessories if I were to go Pentax or any other system?

4. Any other brands or cameras I should consider?

I know this "quest" for me is not going to easy, but from what I have read so far, I am enjoying myself every little bit.
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Old Mar 9, 2010, 4:35 PM   #2
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for general shooting, either camera or system is a fine choice. the canon selection of lenses is larger and cheaper for the most part. however with pentax you get image stabilization in all lenses, (even the older manual focus lenses that work just fine on the kx).

if sports is something you see yourself shooting, then the advantage falls easily on canon. the AF is better for action and sports, and canon has a larger and cheaper selection of lenses for sports shooters.
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Old Mar 9, 2010, 5:26 PM   #3
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Also there is a huge price difference between the 2 cameras. What is your budget.

The slightly larger sensor would give the k-x an edge over the canon in low light noise level at 12800iso. But at something lower it is about the same imagine quality.

The other big question is, how important is HD video to you? next to slightly more mp with the t2i, it's big improvement over the t1i is HD video mode.
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Old Mar 9, 2010, 5:44 PM   #4
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As far as lenses, it rather depends on what you want to shoot - I have Pentax lenses that cover the entire focal range between 10mm to 300mm. While I think about getting something that's longer than 300mm, the ones I've seen tend to be larger and heavier than I'm willing to use, so while I could get something longer, I haven't. My oldest Pentax lens was originally purchased in 1980 and it works fine on a dSLR. It does double duty - not only is it my fast 50 lens, I'll use it reversed in front of a macro lens for more magification. Pentax has a wonderful set of small, fast prime lenses (but they aren't inexpensive) along with consumer zooms. Tamron and Sigma both make lenses for it. I have 14 lenses that get used on a regular basis (only 2 are more-or-less direct equals) and am trying to decide between 3 lenses for a hole I have in my lens line-up, and I'm leaning toward buying 2 of the 3. There are a number of other lenses I'd love to own, but don't feel any real need for. In addition, Canon's in-lens stabilization usually adds weight and size (as well as numbers - they often offer two versions of essentially the same lens - one with stabilization and one without).

As far as accessories - what accessories are you interested in? Nikon has the best flash system, better than either Canon or Pentax (but they all offer exernal flashes that are quite useful). Extension tubes? No problem - modern sets are available for Pentax or you can always do what I did - take a very poor TC that had belonged to my father and remove the glass - lousy old TCs are cheaper than a proper set of extension tubes and work almost as well.

As was stated above, Canon is better if your primary purpose is shooting sports. Otherwise, either camera can produce excellent results.
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Old Mar 10, 2010, 8:08 AM   #5
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Just a quick note. When you look at Canon's lenses, by absolute count they do offer the largest number of lenses. However to do an apples to apples count and comparison, from Canon's number only look at the image stabilized lenses (since Pentax has in body stabilization). The comparison becomes quite a bit more equal. You will also notice that (at least the last time I looked) that Canon does not offer any Image Stabilized wide angle lenses. Now to be fair, generally for landscapes you really do not need stabilization, unless like me you shoot low light landscapes at dusk, then it comes in handy (and a tripod helps, however at times I am caught without - so stabilization helps). Also, Pentax does not currently have any long telephoto lenses over 300mm. Again, just a few folks need something up there. Sigma has a number of fine lenses in that range. Pentax also has a number of older lenses up there, out to about 1400mm (that are still available, when one can find them). One just sold (1200mm) for $10K (it also weighed in at about 20 pounds).

In terms of lens quality Pentax's Limited line, both FA and DA and the DA * are as good as anyone's. Here is an article - although a bit old that sums things up pretty well....

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/co...02-05-02.shtml

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Old Mar 10, 2010, 10:18 AM   #6
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Interested observer,

IMO it's faulty logic to say you must consider only stabilized lenses. The reason is simple - image stabilization is not always needed. The notion that it is always needed is about as true as the notion that 18mp is always needed. It really isn't true. Or the notion that everyone needs ISO 12800. That isn't true either. Or, just like the notion that everyone needs focus point confirmation in the viewfinder. If everyone did, indeed need that then no one would buy the wonderful K-X camera.

Everyone is different.
Quote:
I understand Canon has a large amount of the market share, correct me if I'm wrong, but I do not want this to be my deciding factor. Are there equivalent lenses and accessories if I were to go Pentax or any other system?
No. You're not going to find equivalent lenses in both systems or any two systems. Each system has some lenses the other does not. But Canon and Nikon offer the largest selection of auto-focus lenses of any system. Although the entry level nikon cameras won't autofocus with a number of the nikon lenses (especially short prime lenses). But the real question is whether a system has the lenses YOU need. If you don't know what you'll need and you're worried about it, Nikon and Canon are the safest bets - although as mentioned you'd have to step up to the Nikon D90 to get autofocus with all nikon lenses.

As an example -you mentioned sports shooting. Here are a list of sports capable lenses that Pentax just doesn't have comparable lenses for:
400mm 2.8L
300mm 2.8L
70-200 2.8L (although pentax can use the sigma version)
70-200 4.0L
100-400L
135mm 2.0
100mm 2.0
85mm 1.8
sigma 120-300 2.8

It's not about just focal length - it's about the ring-type focus mechanism in the lens which enables it to focus fast. Now, it's unlikely you'll be buying 400mm or 300mm 2.8 lenses but you talked about flexibility for down the road.

In addition, there's the flexibility of upgrade path for body. Pentax has a K-7 that competes with the Canon 50d. They don't have a camera that competes with the 7d or the 1dmkIII. They don't have full frame cameras to compete with the 5dII or 1dsIII. Now, those aspects may not be important to you. But, if flexibility down the road is a serious concern for you then yes it's tough to say Pentax offers the same flexibility as Canon.

The KX is a great camera. And pentax has some great lenses. If what they have meets your needs, you're good to go. But there just isn't the same flexibility in the system. As for sports - from the photos I've seen from K-X and K-7 - IF paired with a decent lens (sigma 70-200 2.8, sigma 100-300 f4) the cameras produce good images. I don't think they're on the same level as what you can produce with Canon or Nikon because of the focus systems and the other available optics in those systems. But for a casual sports shooter they are probably good enough.
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Old Mar 10, 2010, 2:30 PM   #7
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Something I'd like to add to what JohnG said about lenses not being equivalent, even on focal length - Pentax and Canon have gone in different directions with lens design. Back in the old film days the 70-200 lens was one of the most popular lenses. Canon has continued to offer that lens. Pentax, on the other hand, decided to design a lens that would give (more or less) the same field of view on the digital cameras that the 70-200 did on film cameras - so they developed the 50-135 f2.8. Now that would be a nice lens for someone who wants the same field of view they would have on a film camera, but does nothing for those sports shooters who WANT the narrower field of view that the 70-200 has (both Sigma and Tamron make these lenses to fit the Pentax, however). So there's a lot of differences between focal lengths between the two manufacturers - looking at the lists at B&H, my guess is that there's more differences than there are equivalents.

Long lens selection currently being produced is definitely better with Canon. Pentax users who want long, fast lenses just keep an eye on ebay or keh and buy some of the older, used lenses that used to be made by/for Pentax.

The full-frame upgrade path, while important to many, won't be at all important to others. I am unlikely to own a full-frame camera as long as they are as heavy as they are now - I sometimes struggle with the weight of the K20 and DA*300 lens. I can't imagine being able to handle a 7d, so to me not having a full-frame camera in the lineup is not a hindrance at all (if anything, it's an advantage - the company's development money will be directed to the APS-C sized lenses/cameras that I can use - not something that's pie-in-the-sky dreaming for me. I'm feeling very mixed about the fact that Pentax makes a medium format dSLR now for just that reason). I don't suppose that Pentax does offer a upgrade to a totally different sized system is useful to anyone at the beginning level as they would have to replace their lenses (unless they were to buy MF lenses in the beginning and use them with an adaptor, which I understand you can do with cameras like the Kx - something I would consider pretty impractical).
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Old Mar 10, 2010, 7:08 PM   #8
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Thanks for the replies...from the looks of it and from reading the replies, I'm going to have to a little more research/learning before I buy...



Also, I have access to a K2000 w/ 18-55mm kit lens for $300 used. Is this a good deal or should I still consider the K-x?
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Old Mar 10, 2010, 7:21 PM   #9
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For your low light need, the K-x would be a much better choice. And it has a upgrade AF system that is allot better then the K2000 AF system.
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Old Mar 10, 2010, 10:17 PM   #10
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Been to B&M and held each one...

I like the grip of the KX, but like the weight of the Canon...

Menu system...Thats up in the air. I pm'd shoturtle and he told me that the menu for the KX is pretty user friendly..
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