Pentax k20d Underdog? or Just not that good?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Lynnzora, Feb 5, 2009.

  1. Lynnzora

    Lynnzora TPF Noob!

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    Ok I've done tons of research over the past two months before making the decision to purchase the pentax k20d. To those who have used it can you give your opinion on it's quality. Some people have told me about how it's even better than some Nikkons and cannons... If this is the case, why don't you ever really hear about Pentax? Is i just how it's marketed... or better yet not marketed?

    Currently I'll only have the 15-55 kit lens that comes with it. I've been looking for that $80 kit lens that you all have been been talking about but can't find the 50mm less that $300 and the 85 no less that about $400.. :(

    I guess I'm just hoping that I made the right choice. Well, we'll see... It was shipped out on Tuesday and hopefully make its way to me by Friday or Saturday.
     
  2. Dubious Drewski

    Dubious Drewski TPF Noob!

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    It's got its flaws and strengths like any camera. I don't like its high ISO performance and I don't like that you can't turn long exposure noise reduction off. But with that said, it's the lack of marketing and lack of overall market share that keep you from hearing about them as much as the other brands. It is definitely a great camera and you will love it, I'm sure.

    the 50mm f1.4 is a $200 lens that can be found now and then for less than that. I don't know why it's so expensive for you, unless you live in Australia or something.
     
  3. Katier

    Katier TPF Noob!

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    You've made a very good choice. The manual focus Pentax KA fit 50mm f1.7 prime lens is VERY popular for use on Pentax DSLR's and would give you an effective 75mm or so lens. Ideal for portrait work and excellent quality lens.

    Quality wise it is excellent, I use it's sibling the K200D which shares essentially the same built quality. Both are very solid excellent performers that score highly in all reviews especially when it comes to build quality and image quality both of which are generally better than its direct competition (at similar price level).

    As DD said, they have minuses as well as pluses but so do the direct competition from Canon, Nikon and Sony. They've tended to go for 'bells and whistles' whereas Pentax has gone for a solid workhorse that has the benefit of working with a huge range of lenses all of which work with the noise reduction.

    Overall don't worry, you've made an excellent choice.
     
  4. inTempus

    inTempus TPF Noob!

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    I think you meant to say "image stabilization". Noise reduction works for every lens available for Canon and Nikon as well. It has nothing to do with the lens.

    While in camera IS is handy, it's not necessarily the best solution. There are Canon lenses that give 3-4 stops improvement via IS while the K20D only offers 2 stops improvement. Depending on the lens you can get later generation and better performing IS with a lens purchase. With it built into the camera, as the technology improves you have to upgrade camera bodies to benefit from it. The down side is that buying it in each lens is more expensive.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2009
  5. Katier

    Katier TPF Noob!

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    YES your right.. slight typo.. I did indeed mean Image Stabilization.

    Indeed the general opinion does seem to be that lens is a better solution but with, as you say, the 'problem' of the IS glass being more expensive.

    The benefit of the body of course is that it works with all lenses even a 50 yr old M42 lens but as you say it probably doesn't provide quite the same performance.

    Of course with the pace of Digital development it's far more common to upgrade bodies these days. So the fact you need to upgrade the body to upgrade the IS isn't probably that much of a biggy. For example I'm on my second DSLR, but I use a 50yr old film and 3 20+ yr old film cameras all of which are not in need of upgrading due to advanced in technology.

    All comes down to budget really. But at the end of the day the OP hasn't made a bad choice. He's got an excellent camera that should last him for a good long time.
     
  6. inTempus

    inTempus TPF Noob!

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    I don't think the K20D is a bad choice at all. While I've never used one, everything I've read indicates it's a pretty good camera.

    I don't plan on replacing my 50D completely. When the 60D (or whatever it they call it) comes out, I will buy it to complement my 50D. Meanwhile the IS lenses will work with both the old and the new. My 50D won't be obsoleted by improved IS.

    But again, extremely minor point as you said.
     
  7. Village Idiot

    Village Idiot No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Probably because they don't have any real pro options in the current DSLR era. Pros that use pro gear make a big name for those companies. Find me a well known pro that uses Olympus, Sony, or Pentax. David Hobby, Chase Jarvis, Vincent Laforet, Don Giannitti, Ken Rockwell; they all use Nikon and Canon. At least 4 of the 5 own full frame cameras.

    $80 will get you a Canon 50mm f/1.8II which will AF will all Canon cameras. I think the Nikon one is $100ish, but won't AF with the entry level cameras.

    Sony has IS. Canon & Nikon have solid weather sealed cameras. Olympus is almost water proof. Canon has a pro body camera renowned for being able to be used as a hammer if you happen to need one that day. 'bells and whistles' = features that are useful.

    Myth. Olympus 35-100 f/2.0 sells for about $2100 on B&H. Canon's 70-200 f/2.8L IS sells for about $1600-$1700 depending on what day of the week it is. It's the same focal length, has IS, and despite the narrower aperture still has a shallower DOF because of the 2.0 crop sensor camera.

    Does Pentax make a rechargable battery for their cameras? I know Canon & Nikon (probably the others too) make grips so you can use two batteries. 1500 shots on two batteries isn't bad. Plus the Canon grip (others?) comes with a tray so you can use AA batteries if you need to. Best of both worlds with the addition of a battery grip.
     
  8. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The only bells and whistles my camera has is a 3inch LCD screen (which is certainly cosmetic, but its functionality in reviewing shots might be considered needed). Other than that its all business.

    Generally, when looking at Pros/Cons of a camera, I'll shoot over to DPreview, and check out their "Conclusions" section, and see if those cons are something I can live with. Looking at the cons of the Pentax, I wouldn't feel pressured in investing a few more dollars into another system - especially if I was new.
     
  9. Katier

    Katier TPF Noob!

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    "Does Pentax make a rechargable battery for their cameras? I know Canon & Nikon (probably the others too) make grips so you can use two batteries. 1500 shots on two batteries isn't bad. Plus the Canon grip (others?) comes with a tray so you can use AA batteries if you need to. Best of both worlds with the addition of a battery grip."

    Yes they do and yes they do a battery grip. Pentax do a full range of accessories and allways have done. The K20D I'm not sure if it's a AA one, the K200D one is an AA one but they all have rechargeable battery capability.

    "Sony has IS. Canon & Nikon have solid weather sealed cameras. Olympus is almost water proof. Canon has a pro body camera renowned for being able to be used as a hammer if you happen to need one that day. 'bells and whistles' = features that are useful."

    I'm looking price for price. Sony does indeed have in body IS BUT uses a recent lens mount so has a small range.

    The canon 'hammer' is a LOT more expensive ( and better but it should be ), canon and nikon weather sealing both tends to appear later in their range ( look at all the reviews of a K20D and it has better build quality than the direct competition). Your comparing a pro level multi 1000 pound camera with a £600 semi-pro camera.

    The Olympus lens is most likely more expensive because it's a comfortably faster lens.
     
  10. Katier

    Katier TPF Noob!

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    Yeah I did the same when going for the K200D.
     
  11. Village Idiot

    Village Idiot No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Didn't Sony buy minolta? Can't you use old minolta lenses?

    You can get a Canon 1D MKII for fairly cheap used.

    Despite the wider aperture, you're still not going to get a shallower DOF because of the crop sensor, as I said in my previous post. You also need more light since the Olympus line uses the 4/3 sensor and has terrible high ISO performance compared to pretty much anything else.

    But then again, since the OP plans on shooting portraiture and magazine type photos, the durability and the weather sealing of the low end won't do much, if anything, for her.

    And since she's being "professionally trained", I can see her eventually switching systems if she decides to stick with photography & what she wants to do and if Pentax doesn't release any pro model cameras by then.
     
  12. Katier

    Katier TPF Noob!

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    Yes but it's not as established as the Pentax K or Nikon F mounts.

    "Despite the wider aperture, you're still not going to get a shallower DOF because of the crop sensor, as I said in my previous post. You also need more light since the Olympus line uses the 4/3 sensor and has terrible high ISO performance compared to pretty much anything else."

    No but you'll be able to cope with darker conditions better which is the main reason for wanting a quicker lens. It might also perform better wide open.

    Granted the Olympus sensor is far from the best but even so the chances are the lens is more expensive due to higher speed. You were comparing lenses to make an argument but chose two lenses that don't directly compare ( due to the aperture ).
     

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