Any K3 II users? Please share your pixel shift usage

Discussion in 'Pentax' started by hin_man, May 7, 2016.

  1. Can anyone with K3 II share their pixel shift experience? Do you find it useful for your shooting and what kind of shooting do you get the most out of your K3 II. Besides pixel shift, does K3 II have any noticeable upgrade from K-3. Please share, I am thinking of an upgrade from K-5. I am very happy with K-5 but I want my next Pentax body to be faster so that I can use it to cover more shooting interest as in occasional birding and casual sport events for my boys such as summer baseball.

  2. AJG


    I can't tell you anything about the K3 II, but I can tell you that the autofocusing on the K 3 is noticeably faster and more accurate with the same lenses than my K 5's. I considered the K3 II last fall when I got my K3's, but I had no interest in the built in GPS and a lot of my photography is studio work with electronic flash where I couldn't use the pixel shift even if I wanted to, so I saved the $100 (at the time) and have been very happy with the K3.
  3. Thank you Andrew. I would have done the same to pick K-3 when it was on sale few months back. But now the difference is smaller and I am intrigued with the assessment on K-1 where pixel shift is compared on landscape shots to other full frames. I am not ready for K-1, so anything on K-3 II that is better than K-3 is a welcome sign for me but I just don't know enough on K-3 II particulars that I am not sure if the difference is worth the extra. I prefer flash over the GPS but I am open to the GPS for night shooting into Astro type of thing. Don't know, I may end up buying extra stuff that I don't use. I saw the camera store comparison of 24-70 where K3 II was used to compare to the other full frame in Sony G 24-70 and the similar on Nikon and Canon full frames. It is not a fair comparison but K-1 was not ready.
    Link to petapixel
    Youtube direct link from Camera Store:
  4. Hin, I can't speak too much for K-3 but as of K-5ii, the AF module improved its light sensitivity. I think this has been the most noticeable AF improvement on a Pentax DSLR that I can recall.
  5. @Andrew Gilchrist, much thanks for the inputs. I like my K-5 and it will be sweet to get its AF improved. And between the K-3 and K-5, I prefer the lighter weight on the K-5. But it won't make great sense for me to upgrade with a used K-5 II. I hear from many K-5 or K-5 II users that K-3 doesnt actually improve on image quality but they do shoot faster and have better AF overall. Hence I ask the question on pixel shift on K-3 II.

    I actually feel my K-5 to be alright in indoor event shooting and I don't feel underwhelmed in AF. Extreme low light will be a different area that I have not shot a lot and I am sure that the new models will do better. I need better AF in shooting wild life and sport action, I do have troubles with my K-5 in shooting baseball and birds in flight. Some have to do with my techniques and lack of practices but some have to do with small number of AF points and inadequate tracking in AF.
  6. Hin, I think when people see the increased AF sensitivity the first thought is 'low light' -- but I suspect it also helps with slower lenses as well.
    My K-5ii was an upgrade from K-7. I don't think I've used this model enough yet with AF.C tracking to know just how much better it is in that regard. Clearly K-3 has taken another intentional step beyond all previous Pentax D-SLRs by including more than 12 AF points (27)...I also am curious how much difference this makes in practice.
  7. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    The one thing that intrigues me about the pixel shift is the possibility to do deep-night sky photography. With wide angle lenses say a 20mm f2.8 I can maximally shoot about 30 seconds without getting star trails. With the pixel shift I might be able to really improve those images. Still, I like the popup flash so I don't see replacing my K3 (if it is indeed dead) with a K3 ii.
  8. Thank you Douglas and Andrew for the inputs. I will look into K5 II more and I have not spent the quality time to look into pixel shift. I recall seeing impressive threads with photographers printing out large on landscapes with improvements closing the gaps with full frame. And the recent camera store comparison with four 24-70 with full frames in Nikon, Canon, Sony and the K-3 II is intriguing from Petaxpixel in .
    One expectation on K-3 and K-3 II is on AF improvements over the previous body. My Sony A6000 has 10 frames per second and the lock-on AF is impressive with 170+ af points. The newer version with A6300 has 400+ PDAF points. But even with all the tech, there is no substitute for experience and readiness to shoot. I was hiking on Mother day with family and we saw the red tail hawk not afraid of us and it lets us close in and I have my Sony A6000 and a 55-210mm kit zoom. The zoom costed me $150 in a bundle. I was not ready to capture the BIF moment, I have all the wrong settings such as JPG, AF-S, A mode, AF flexible points, but I managed to shoot it before leaving the tree

    If my search into Astro shooting with K-3 and K-3 II, I will share back my findings as Astro interest me even though I don't have the experience shooting at night time. The gps will come in handy.
  9. I like the previous one better
  10. [​IMG]
    Once the hawk leaves the trees, all shots are bad and not worthy to post or edit. I was totally bumped as I should have turned to the custom mode that I setup for action. With K-3 or K-3 II, I would shoot it with my F* 300mm or wait to re-get 60-250 or a sigma 100-300.
  11. Hin, those are pretty nice. Were you that close or did you crop?
  12. The above are not a crop. I was the lucky bastard getting this close to a hawk, feel like in 20 feet. I think I shot most in the 190mm of a 55-210mm kit zoom from Sony. All settings were actually wrong as I worked all Saturday -- the silly me and managed to muster the last ounce of energy to go hiking after church and lunch, yes I labored for the lunch before hiking. I was DEAD tire and I saw my most hated drink in my fridge -- the non-sugar kind of red bull and I had to give in for the mother day hike.
    It was great experience except I was not ready for this hawk. My sons ahead of me walking up-hill ran to me and said "Daddy, we saw this daring hawk not moving on the tree." I shot great series before he left as another group close by with a stroller. I shot it likely wrong in f/6.3 as I was after the softer bokeh in still pictures. When it flapped its wings, I was too late to switch to Action kind of mode.
  13. In hiking, I preferred lighter gear. Not because it is more capable but it helps me to have a small single-lens kit tucked in my backpack. When I manage to get K-3 or K-3 II (or even a K-5 II), it would be used in more serious shooting as in events and the occasional birding and casual sports.
    This one is a slight crop
    It was not sharp in the original picture, the lens is a bit soft in f/6.3, maybe I shot it with some slight movement. I use pre-sharpener in Nil collection to help.
    In the mother day hiking, I have a small Lowepro bag tucked in my back-pack with one camera and two lenses. The small prime cost $25.00 with Fujian 35mm f/1.7 in C-mount and the zoom that shot all pictures in this post was the $150 sony 55-210mm f/4.5-6.3 kit zoom. I was shooting at its weakest wide open aperture -- I am not complaining about the lens but the guy who goes for the bokeh.
  14. In hiking, I preferred lighter gear. Not because it is more capable but it helps me to have a small single-lens kit tucked in my backpack. When I manage to get K-3 or K-3 II (or even a K-5 II), it would be used in more serious shooting as in events and the occasional birding and casual sports.​
    I'd personally opt for the K-3II and GPS and Pixel shift, but that is definitely more suited to the things I shoot. And I almost went with it, but I sort of left the door open for the K-1 and I preferred the compact body on the K-5 (slightly more compact) than the K-3, the ability to enter the composition adjust mode more quickly (raw button) and a few other things. I've really found the composition adjust is a useful feature in lieu of lugging a dedicated shift lens, which I do already own. Obviously it's got less than half the adjustment and works best with wide angles, but it's a useful feature for perspective control.
    I basically wanted the K-3II tech in the K-5IIs body and ergonomics, but decided that the K-5IIs would make a better backup or more compact option to the K-1 should I go that route. For me, the IQ and metering/AF difference between the K-3 and K-5II was mostly an even deal. The K-3 might be a little better in some areas but the K-5IIs holds it's own and on the IQ front it's really close.
    The end result for me. I saved $400 (including a BG-4 grip, which I don't use enough to justify buying at full price, but I do appreciate having on occasion) and decided instead to add a few lenses that I needed. Ended up with the 16-85, 35mm FA which I've always liked and makes for a nice fast normal lens (I once owned this, sold it and the FA50 in favor of the 43mm and then realized the 43mm was just too long an APS-C while the 35mm was just long enough), and picked up a 70mm DA. I also added a DFA 100mm.
    I'm not really concerned about using DA lenses on the K-1 should I get it. Not a big deal to me. and I like the compact nature of the DA 70 vs the 77mm. The fact that Pentax, unlike Canon allows use of DA lenses on a FA camera is a big bonus in enticing me to upgrade.
    Like you, Hin, for stuff not shot from the trunk of my car, I prefer more compact equipment. Obviously f/4 lenses don't always get it done, but for the most part I'd opt for smaller bodies and lenses when possible. The reason I didn't jump into the mirrorless realm is that I realized that while the body is a lot smaller and even lighter. Once you attach a decent lens to it, the size advantage is mostly gone and in some ways the mirrorless now has a disadvantage in that it's unbalanced. I think Pentax, especially the K-5II, does a great job balancing size, weight, image quality and functionality into a complete package of camera body and lenses.

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