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hornmanjeff
03-02-2006, 10:46 AM
With the lower price point of the Pentax vs the D50, I would appreciate any comparisons of the 2 cameras. Thinking of both with the 18-55 kit lens.

Thanks,
Jeff

jeisner
03-02-2006, 04:05 PM
It depends what your after, picture quality wise they have the same Sony sensor and although the performance isn't identical it is pretty darn close...

Feature wise they are pretty similar too, a coule of things that would stop me buying a D50 is the lack of mirror lockup and DOF preview.. I use DOF preview both for macro and for previewing flare when shooting into the sun.. Mirror lockup helps on a tripod with a longish lens at slower shutter speeds..

If you buy the DL with the 18-55 kit lens I would also suggest the DA 50-200 ED lens to complement the kit, I use it a lot when I don't want to carry around a bigger heavier zoom and have been surprised with the quality..

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0502/05021809pentax_50-200mm.asp

If you have any Pentax questions (and want a faster response than here) or want to see some more samples, go to the Penatx slr forum at dpreview, it is probably the friendliest section of the dpreview forums ;-) and has become very active of late..

astro
03-03-2006, 08:52 AM
In my opinion, Pentax's strongest point lies with their prime lenses. Pentax makes some of the best prime lenses there is. Their zoom lenses are just mediocre in general(except for their now discontinued * zooms).
So if you want some really high quality primes, such as Pentax's limited lenses, then get the Pentax.
If you just want something easy, with two zooms, then I'd get a nikon.

Another great thing about Pentax is their superior backwards lens compatibility. This is a godsend for buyers on a budget, as with old, used lenses, you can easily build up a vast collection of top-notch primes for next to nothing.
Just check out this ebay auction that ended yesterday. http://cgi.ebay.com/Honeywell-Pentax-ESII-asahi-Camera-kit_W0QQitemZ7593741736QQcategoryZ15240QQrdZ1QQcmd ZViewItem
It comes with a 17/4 fisheye, 35/2, 50/1.4, 135/2.5. All of these lenses are some of the best lenses in their class, even in today's standards.
I personally own all of them now except the fisheye. The 135/2.5 is absolutely sharp wide open. The 50mm F/1.4 is considered one of the best 50mm ever made.
To give you an idea how good these lenses are, here's a comparison between the 50/1.4 that I've been talking about, and a 50/1.8 from canon
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic2/238813/0
But of course, you lose AF functionality, which I personally don't find as a big deal.

hornmanjeff
03-03-2006, 05:26 PM
as on the Nikon. I think it is 4/3 so the 18 mm is more like 24?

jeisner
03-03-2006, 05:59 PM
The crop factor is the same for pentax and nikon (well d70/d70s and D50)...

It is a 1.5x crop factor so the FOV of an 18mm on a APS-C DSLR will be the equivelant of a 27mm on film...

WightWalker
03-05-2006, 02:11 PM
Having owned a *istDS for a year - & being very pleased with it - I used a Nikon D50 when trying out a Tamron 18-200mm zoom lens.

It felt OK to use, focused fast - faster than the *istDS - & produced SHARP JPEGs straight out of the camera that were noticeably better than unprocessed *istDS shots.

My needs are simple - I like my *istDS BUT if the D50 had been around at the time that I'd bought the *istDS, I might just have opted for the D50 instead.

astro
03-05-2006, 10:21 PM
Having owned a *istDS for a year - & being very pleased with it - I used a Nikon D50 when trying out a Tamron 18-200mm zoom lens.

It felt OK to use, focused fast - faster than the *istDS - & produced SHARP JPEGs straight out of the camera that were noticeably better than unprocessed *istDS shots.

My needs are simple - I like my *istDS BUT if the D50 had been around at the time that I'd bought the *istDS, I might just have opted for the D50 instead.

Are you sure you were using natural mode and not vivid mode? Natural mode produces much more detailed JPGs that's closer to RAW than vivid mode.
Here's a personal test that I did.
http://astroguy.org/jpgtest.jpg