Pages: [1]   Go Down

Author Topic: Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?  (Read 4706 times)

bass_sears

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« on: March 01, 2008, 11:24:06 pm »

Am researching a new SLR and am leaning towards the Pentax K10d (has the features I'm looking for, is a nice price point, and I like the weather proofing)

My concern is a few reviews that indicate a lack of crispness in their shots. I am moving up from a very nice point and shoot (Panasonic Lumix FZ8) and the main reason is because I want crisper shots.

That being said for my careful shots - landscapes mostly - I'll pretty much always be shooting RAW, and the great comparisons in DPReview's review seem to indicate that the softness issue is just with their JPEG's, not when shooting RAW.

Any real life experiences here would be greatly appreciated.

-- Bass

---
Hailey, ID
http://www.pictureofnectar.com
Logged

Philip Weber

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 185
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2008, 08:16:00 am »

I have had the K10D since last August and found no "softness" issues (I also shoot only RAW). I suppose it depends on the lens and your technique but the combo of the pro-level weather seals, in-camera IS and wanting a D-SLR under $1,000 (my first D-SLR too, bought one for $740) made it more attractive to me than a Canon Rebel or Nikon D-40/D80.

Now that the new K20D is out (lists for $1,299) the K10D will probably be a real steal! However, if you have the money, I'd step right into the K20D. There aren't many reviews out yet as it was just released last week (I'm shooting with it for the first time today!), You might want to check out the Pentax user forums for much more info than you'll generally see here.

I love the LL forums and as a newbie, have learned a great deal here. However, it appears to me that the majority of the forum posters here shoot with either Canon or Nikon (obviously both great camera lines as well).

BTW, you might want to look at Michael's review of the K10D on the LL site if you haven't already, he really liked it!

Good luck!
Phil
« Last Edit: March 02, 2008, 08:18:19 am by Philip Weber »
Logged

bass_sears

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2008, 06:42:24 pm »

Phil,

Thanks for the advice... I think the K20 is going to be out of my price range so I would be looking at the K10.

Another user on another site mentioned bad experiences with this camera in low light (specifically he stated "Skip the K10d the vertical patern noise in low light/dark situations makes it worthless for night shots unless you want to totally destroy any shadow detail.")... he was advocating a Rebel XTi which doesn't feel right in my hands, and I do a lot of outdoor trips / river trips and like how sealed up the K10 is (got my hands on one today finally to look at).

Any experience in low light you could (pun intended) shed some light on?

Thanks again.

-- Bass

Quote
I have had the K10D since last August and found no "softness" issues (I also shoot only RAW). [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=178623\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Logged

Dale_Cotton

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 588
    • http://daystarvisions.com
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2008, 08:08:37 pm »

The K10D should be a great choice for landscape. The softness issue is indeed dpreview's fixation on testing dSLRs as if they were point&shoots - calling everything on the basis of JPEG output. In fact, the same review on dpreview acknowledges that for raw, this camera is sharper than most at 10 mp; the theory being that its anti-aliasing filter is weaker than average. Given budget constraints, I wouldn't hesitate to get it over the K20D; just means your maximum print size will be somewhat smaller; and it drives a 13" printer very handily. (Think of it this way: just a few years back the 11 megapixel Canon 1Ds was the very expensive ultimate in dSLR resolution that all of us were drooling over.)

As for banding noise, no need to take anyone's word for it; run the high ISO raw samples on this site through your raw converter and see for yourself. (Incidentally, banding noise occurs in multiple brands and models; I think of it as being a side effect of ISO being pushed to the limit.)

One great thing about the higher end of the Pentax line, including the K10D, is the excellent finder, another is the in-body IS, another is the quality of lenses available (see here), another is the in-camera spot-metering.

Quote
I do a lot of outdoor trips / river trips and like how sealed up the K10 is
Word to the wise: those who have followed this site for the past few years will remember that on one of the Antarctic expeditions, several fully sealed pro bodies were rendered repair shop fodder by being used for a photo excursion in the rain. IOW: even sealed bodies have their limits. I guess some spatter should be OK, but not drenching.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2008, 08:25:04 pm by Dale Cotton »
Logged

Philip Weber

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 185
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2008, 09:20:14 pm »

Bass - Great info from Dale; I'd go through the excercises he suggests before buying anything.

If a camera doesn't feel right in your hands...don't buy it! Have you played with a K10D?

I don't do much low light shooting, mainly nature/landscape and wildlife. That said, I've got a Pentax 31mm f/1.8 ltd. that's awesome for both sharpness and low light (see the review of it on the LL site). It's expensive but worth it. BTW, I really like the Pentax glass I have (I have a Sigma 50-500mm too - The "Bigma") but Pentax is behind Canon and Nikon in overall quantity of selections. With the in-camera IS, the glass you will buy is generally less expensive though. Having said that, you'll still need a tripod - the IS is good but not as good as the Pentax marketing department would have it!  

The K10D ISO 1600 (based on my experience with it and having none with any other camera) isn't bad and cleans up well with Noise Ninja (the software I use, there are other good ones). After today's shoot, I am thrilled with the K20D at ISO 1600; it's like ISO 400 on the K10D, which is to say very good! I was shocked the ISO 3200 was as good as it was too. Their new CMOS 14.6mp resolution is a big upgrade in image quality, which is where it's at for me.

Still, I wouldn't hesitate to buy a K10D, (I kept mine as a back-up body) especially now that the K20D is out, as there should be some GREAT deals out there, with or without the 18-55mm kit lens. BTW, if you do buy one, go online and upgrade your firmwear to the 1.3 version.  

I'm with Bass on the water issue - mist and a little light rain is no big deal with the Pentax weather seals but major spalshes like one might receive on a rafting trip would give me great pause. Water on the lens might be your biggest issue.

I hope this helps!
Phil
Logged

BernardLanguillier

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 13543
    • http://www.flickr.com/photos/bernardlanguillier/sets/
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2008, 11:13:01 pm »

Quote
Word to the wise: those who have followed this site for the past few years will remember that on one of the Antarctic expeditions, several fully sealed pro bodies were rendered repair shop fodder by being used for a photo excursion in the rain. IOW: even sealed bodies have their limits. I guess some spatter should be OK, but not drenching.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=178751\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Very wise piece of advise indeed. It should be clear by now that those planning to keep shooting if it rains should invest a few euros in a proper rain cover.

Cheers,
Bernard

bass_sears

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2008, 11:43:59 pm »

Thanks to all for their words of advice... can be very stressful reading all these reviews because of course everyone has some problem with something, can really scramble the brain after a while.

Did the "how does it feel in your hands" test today and it really passed... when I picked it up things seemed to be in the right place, my hand went right to the zoom ring etc. When I picked up an XTi I had to take it back away from my eye to trip the shutter, not a good sign for me (no disrespect to XTi owners, to each their own).

And yes, I would never consider going all weather with this camera, just thinking that no matter how careful I am on my outdoor trips every little bit of protection helps.

Thanks again for the help and the pointers to the samples... I am just getting back into photography after a long layoff so still readapting to the digital world, would not have *even* occurred to me that someone would stock RAW sample images for us folks to see!

-- Bass
Logged

mbridgers

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 156
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2008, 07:01:23 am »

I love my K10D.  No softness from RAW at all.  In fact, since DNG is an option for the raw files, it feels like ACR was made for this camera.  If you choose to shoot JPG, you can change the sharpening options to make it as puncy has you like.

You may want to invest $33 and look at reidreviews.com.  Sean has recently reviewed the K10D and a lens or two, with more reviews on the way.  Great site for other articles too, particularly rangefinder related articles.  Good general philosophy of photography articles too.
Logged

bass_sears

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2008, 08:13:38 pm »

One other quick (perhaps stupid) question on the K10D... does the threaded end of the lens spin when it focuses or when you zoom in and out? Do other SLR lenses usually do this?

I ask because I have a Cokin P holder that is 52mm threaded and want to know if my graduated ND filters will be spinning around all the time  
Logged

DarkPenguin

  • Guest
Pentax K10d -- not crisp shots?
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2008, 08:24:57 pm »

Usually depends on the lens.
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up