'Upgrade to K-1' quandary...


Benz3ne

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 10:47
I'll join the throng of people who have previously asked this question (many of which I've read through previously, for what it's worth) and I'm stuck in an interesting place.

I have two cameras, K-S2 (white) and K-70, both in pretty good condition, likely to have less than a few thousand actuations each. I only ever use the K-70 having received it earlier this year, despite thinking I was going to continue using the K-S2 alongside... Ergo, I use one camera only regardless of how many I own.

I also have a myriad of lenses, of which only 3 are APS-C (18-135mm, DA50/1.8, 55-300 PLM) with the remainder being a D-FA 100mm WR Macro and 7 film-era lenses (all full-frame compatible). Ergo, I'm not overly reliant on ASP-C lenses.

I cautiously estimate the values of the K-S2, K-70, 18-135mm and DA50 to be around £780 total based on auction site completed sales and current prices, which could be sold as two 'kits'. There's not much room between this total and a used K-1 (seen a few with 10,000 or less shutter actuations for £860-900) or a new one which crops up (pun unintended) sometimes for around the £1k mark. Add in a 28-105mm WR in due course and I'm away to go with full-frame at my disposal, less the 55-300mm PLM.

My question is; if you were in my shoes, what would be your thinking? Happy to hear opinions either side of the fence, but the take-home would be the anecdotal experience as to why you did or did not opt for a K-1... or why a K-70 should be preferential.

Further to this, I've toyed with the idea of an astrotracer - I'd be able to save around £100 (minimum) on getting an O-GPS1, so that further closes the gap. The K-1 was brought out the same time as the K-70 but one was flagship and one was not; again another point I guess I should consider!

Nigelk

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 11:52
I'm sort of in the same position but not quite.
I also have 2 APS-C cameras a K5II and a K-S2
I also find myself using only one, the K-S2 with the K5 hardly ever getting picked up.
However I have no desire for the extra bulk and cost of having a 35mm equivalent camera. I'm therefore happy to have and consider buying more APSC-S lenses. The quality of image that can be produced from either size sensor is amazing.
If you want greater image quality you could invest in some better lenses for your existing cameras. Sell the K-S2 and buy the 16-85mm or the 20-40mm or the new 11-18mm or, or or...... all should be better than the 18-135mm by my reckoning, it's a handy lens with pleasing enough output but it's more about being small and handy for its range rather than being a great optic.

Enjoy your dilemma. You'll have great kit whatever

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johnha

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 12:54
It depends on whether you want to go FF with a K-1 or not (I would - especially if wanting Astrotracer). I had a K-5 and didn't upgrade it for another APS-C body as I was waiting for FF. When I bought the K-1, I kept the K-5 as a spare body as it wasn't worth enough to trade. I have only two DA lenses (10-17FE & 17-70), the rest of my lenses were (and still are) film era FF lenses (I'm expecting to go for a D-FA with WR at some time).

Film era FF lenses are very practical on the K-1 (except perhaps some of the cheap AF 28-xx kit lenses from the '90s) - obviously KA or later are preferable to avoid the Green button. The 55-300 might be useful on a K-1 in crop mode when you really need more reach.

The lenses I use most on the K-1 according to use are: FA20-35/4, FA43, M80-200/4.5, Sigma 70-300APO but I'd be happy to use most M, A, F or FA primes (zooms are more hit and miss).

My only reservation is buying a used DSLR - I'd aim for one with a good warranty from a good dealer rather than a cheaper 'private' sale.
PPG Flickr

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pschlute

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 13:38
What sort of photography do you do ? If your subjects are fast sports or wildlife where you want a high buffer you may do better sticking with aps-c. If you like to carry your camera around for hours at a time, likewise. The K-1 plus the DFA 24-70 is not a camera for carting around on your shoulder. It is big and heavy. I got the K1 three years ago and absolutely love it, but most of the time use it on a tripod or monopod.

You should certainly try it out at a shop before buying it.
Peter



My Flickr page

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womble

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 14:31
I keep thinking about this too. I have a five year old K-3 and have yet to find it limits what I do. I'm not into photographing fast moving things. For me (and this is very personal):

Pros
My 28mm shift would be more useful.
My many other film era lenses would be the AOV intended.
My 35mm film SLRs and digital would match.
Two in-viewfinder levels
Image quality

Cons
file sizes / disk usage
weight
I actually really like using my FA31mm Ltd as a slightly-wide standard lens, it pretty much lives on my K-3.
Cost of replacing my APS-C lenses (DA* 50-135, DA* 60-250, DA 12-24, Sigma 17-80)

Of the cons, the cost is the main one. I can shoot and develop a hell-of-lot of medium format film for the cost of a K-1 plus new FF zooms...

As a result, I have just purchased a new wide angle lens for my 5x4 view camera and a box of film. I bet it'll take me a few weeks to shoot all 20 frames. On a good day I might shoot four or five frames!

Good luck with your choice.
Kris Lockyear
It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head. Henri Cartier-Bresson
Lots of film bodies, a couple of digital ones, too many lenses (mainly older glass) and a Horseman LE 5x4.

My website

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pschlute

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 14:46
womble wrote:

Cost of replacing my APS-C lenses (DA* 50-135, DA* 60-250, DA 12-24, Sigma 17-80)

I cannot speak for the others, but the 60-250 works just fine on FF. There is a tiny bit of vignetting noticeable but it did not bother me. If you crop at all it is gone or you can brighten it up in post. There is a baffle modification that some have done to it but I dont think it is worth it.
Peter



My Flickr page

Benz3ne

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 15:35
johnha wrote:
It depends on whether you want to go FF with a K-1 or not (I would - especially if wanting Astrotracer).

Film era FF lenses are very practical on the K-1 (except perhaps some of the cheap AF 28-xx kit lenses from the '90s) - obviously KA or later are preferable to avoid the Green button. The 55-300 might be useful on a K-1 in crop mode when you really need more reach.

[...] but I'd be happy to use most M, A, F or FA primes (zooms are more hit and miss).

My only reservation is buying a used DSLR - I'd aim for one with a good warranty from a good dealer rather than a cheaper 'private' sale.

Sorry to pick and choose the aspects from your useful reply - Yes, astrotracer would be great. There are some nice areas nearby which I'd love to take starry photos of.

I have heard much about the FF + Film Era lenses combination, which is the main aspect of my dilemma. Had I gone down the 'APS-C Zoom only' road, it wouldn't cross my mind. To date, I have the A28/2.8, A50/1.7, M50/1.4, A50/2.8 Macro, M135/3.5, Auto-Takumar 55/2.2 and Helios 44-2. All of which would be great fun to try on FF.

Agreed - the ones I'm looking at are typically from retailers who do used goods, or I'm keeping an eye out on private sales here but they're few and far between, or new which also pop up rarely.

RobL

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 15:36
Having previously used a K50 (I loaned to my stepdaughter and unlikely to see it again) and unless I have just got better the K1 is a step up in image quality, no question and you will see it if you like doing prints. The biggest advantage for me is the dynamic range and also with 36mp there is more flexibility in cropping. Whilst I use the f2.8 zooms I am increasingly using lightweight prime lenses which helps with the weight. It doesn't sound as if you take loads of shots but with 350,000 actuations and robust construction it should give years of use.

That being said picking up the K50 after using the K1 for a few months I recall how compact and light it felt and before I "lost" it started using it again on longer walks. It is a balance between image quality and convenience.

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Benz3ne

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 15:42
pschlute wrote:
What sort of photography do you do ? If your subjects are fast sports or wildlife where you want a high buffer you may do better sticking with aps-c. If you like to carry your camera around for hours at a time, likewise. The K-1 plus the DFA 24-70 is not a camera for carting around on your shoulder. It is big and heavy. I got the K1 three years ago and absolutely love it, but most of the time use it on a tripod or monopod.

You should certainly try it out at a shop before buying it.

Thanks, Peter. My photography is vastly varying. Not much in terms of sports or wildlife unless it's chasing my dogs around, at which point I'm not huge on burst shots over a small handful (6/7 max), and where improved AF would benefit. Other wildlife is birds, which again doesn't occur that often, and again I don't 'hit and hope' for the good shots. Most of my shots are tending towards wildlife macro, or 'out and about' shots down the beach of some scenery, some of the dogs, some of people, some of this/that/other... I'm yet to truly find my 'niche' but I'm enjoying having a wide variety of subjects.

I do carry my camera around a fair amount - usually it's in a rucksack in its own little carry case, where I find it absolutely unobtrusive. I want to get a wrist strap too as I'm not overly keen on neck straps, so that'll make carrying a little easier I'm sure regardless of camera heft. I don't have it out for huge amount of time when you tally it up - it'll be an hour here and hour there. Longest spells have been perhaps two hours and I've found that very comfortable with K-70, regardless of lens (or lenses, if they're in a camera bag).

I'm also looking towards getting a tripod/monopod at some point so that'd further help where I've not had help before. Fortunately, I don't suffer much with aches/groans, being a spritely sub-30 year old so I guess that goes in my favour for carrying a slightly heavier camera.

pschlute

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 15:49
In that case give the K1 a go. incredible dynamic range, lots of features, I am sure you will love it.
Peter



My Flickr page

Benz3ne

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 16:05
womble wrote:
I keep thinking about this too. I have a five year old K-3 and have yet to find it limits what I do. I'm not into photographing fast moving things. For me (and this is very personal):

Pros
My 28mm shift would be more useful.
My many other film era lenses would be the AOV intended.
My 35mm film SLRs and digital would match.
Two in-viewfinder levels
Image quality

Cons
file sizes / disk usage
weight
I actually really like using my FA31mm Ltd as a slightly-wide standard lens, it pretty much lives on my K-3.
Cost of replacing my APS-C lenses (DA* 50-135, DA* 60-250, DA 12-24, Sigma 17-80)

Of the cons, the cost is the main one. I can shoot and develop a hell-of-lot of medium format film for the cost of a K-1 plus new FF zooms...

As a result, I have just purchased a new wide angle lens for my 5x4 view camera and a box of film. I bet it'll take me a few weeks to shoot all 20 frames. On a good day I might shoot four or five frames!

Good luck with your choice.

Your first point is a fair one, really. Yes, the K-70 is limited by me more than I am by it, but there's perhaps something to be said for autofocus ability? The K-70 isn't terrible but it's not exactly excelling in this regard, which is where some aspects fall short for me. I've definitely improved over the last few months so I'm becoming more tuned into shortfalls of the K-70 (which is typically on focus ability for someone who's not particularly 'good' in this respect). It's probably an idealistic view but wouldn't a camera touted at being better for autofocusing help poorer autofocus'ers focus better? (Sorry, that sentence wasn't going to come out well however I phrased it).

The replacement of APS-C lenses is less of a burden for me. They'd help the sales of my camera bodies, in a 'like for like' scenario are easily replaceable (18-135mm for 28-105mm, not the same range but not tremendously far off) or defunct in my case (I'm finding myself even now opting for film era lenses over the DA50).

Yes, cost is clearly the main gripe. I'm at the point where I can't imagine myself giving up camera-ing, so it's not as if I wouldn't use the item in question... I remember hitting that point with guitar playing, self-taught, around 15-16 years ago!

Thanks for the good luck! I'll deliberate for many months I'm sure (as is my nature, much to the frustration of my better half).

Benz3ne

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 16:10
RobL wrote:
Having previously used a K50 (I loaned to my stepdaughter and unlikely to see it again) and unless I have just got better the K1 is a step up in image quality, no question and you will see it if you like doing prints. The biggest advantage for me is the dynamic range and also with 36mp there is more flexibility in cropping. Whilst I use the f2.8 zooms I am increasingly using lightweight prime lenses which helps with the weight. It doesn't sound as if you take loads of shots but with 350,000 actuations and robust construction it should give years of use.

That being said picking up the K50 after using the K1 for a few months I recall how compact and light it felt and before I "lost" it started using it again on longer walks. It is a balance between image quality and convenience.

Thanks for this RobL. Perhaps I'll see less of a difference coming from a camera that's markedly newer than the K-50? I would imagine there will still be a step up in image quality (well, 50% more pixels to do the maths). The ability to crop further would certainly help. If I can take a picture down to 2/3 of the original size and still have the same resolution of the APS-C I'm currently using, I see that as a win. Yes, this is offset by the effective focal length of FF vs APS-C but with some hands-on time I'm sure my framing would balance that.

I'm sure that would be the case with anyone going between a 700g and 1kg camera. It's not a slight difference and definitely one to consider. You're right, I don't take masses of pictures but I'm taking the camera out considerably more these days and I can only see that gaining traction in time to come.

cardiffgareth

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 17:31
I was in your boat before with a K3ii, 16-50, 50-135mm etc but took the plunge and built it back up over the years with full frame lenses. Best decision I ever made
Gareth
Welsh Photographer

My outfit: K1 gripped - Pentax DFA 24-70mm - Sigma 70-200mm HSM Macro - Sigma 50mm macro - Sigma 50-500mm - Pentax AF 540 FGZ Ii

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My PPG
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Benz3ne

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 19:41
cardiffgareth wrote:
I was in your boat before with a K3ii, 16-50, 50-135mm etc but took the plunge and built it back up over the years with full frame lenses. Best decision I ever made

Well, you’ve certainly thrown fuel on the fire here Gareth! thanks (from a fellow Welshie - love some of the pictures you’ve taken of places near me; Mumbles, Three Cliffs, Rhossili etc)!

This is the bit I’m forgetting too - it’s not just “here and now”, there’s time to increase the repertoire of lenses over the years...

erikro

Link Posted 16/10/2019 - 22:20
Go for the K-1, you will not be disapointed.
I have both K-5II and K-50, but only use them as backup, the K-1 us superb.
K5IIs/K-1 II + film cameraes
I love my Pentax, all of them.

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