Rumors about Canon Matching Pentax K-5 Sensor?

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by brent_bennett, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. I have read several reports that the best APS-C sensor available at this time is the one being used in the Pentax K-5. Also from what I have read, the Sony A580 and the Nikon D7000 and D5100 use essentially the same sensor.
    According to test reports I have seen, there is not currently a Canon APS-C camera that can match the IQ of the ones I have mentioned.
    My question: Are there specific rumors that Canon will be using the sensor that these other manufacturers are using, or an equivelent match? And if so, when might such a model be reseased by Canon?
    Thank You
     
  2. "...specific rumours...". I like the way you said that...
     
  3. That is odd. From what I have read and seen, I'd rather have a 7D!
     
  4. My understanding is that the 7D is the best crop sensor body currently available, and I am even considering picking one up myself to complement my 5DII.
    Anyway, even if there were rumours such as those you're contemplating, Brent, they'd be just that, rumours.
    And rumours don't make photographs.
     
  5. The Sony sensor you're referring to is a newer design then Canon's 18 MP APS-C sensor by about a year. It offers slightly lower noise and, if you process for it, slightly more dynamic range due to the lower noise floor. (If you don't specifically process for it, the DR is the same.)
    It would be impossible for you to discern 16x24 or 20x30 prints from these two sensor families. Nerds who debate cameras rather than use them miss that in their 'reports'. This is also fueled by faulty DxO tests which should be ignored rather than used in any decision making process.
    I would agree with Mark that right now the 7D is arguably the best crop body made. It has excellent IQ matched with a comprehensive and high performance feature set.
     
  6. Sony, Nikon, and Pentax use Sony sensors. Canon makes their own. I don't expect we'll see a Sony sensor in a Canon camera any time soon as that would be a bad sign for Canon to give.
    I am also curious about the performance of the next APS-C sensors from Canon, but Sony seems to lead in sensor technology at the moment. Currently, the T3i and the 7D are the highest ranked Canon APS sensors and they're sitting at #44 and #49, respectively, in dxomark's rating, having the same score in fact - 66. K-5 and D7000 are now in top 10 - #6 and #10. Canon only has the 1Ds Mark III sensor in top 10 at #9.
    See Canon7D vs Pentax K-5 vs Nikon D7000 @dxomark
    I find it highly unlikely that a Canon APS camera will break into top 10 in the next year, simply because it would be too big of a jump from where they are right now.
    On the other hand, like Mark mentioned, this shouldn't prevent you from getting great shots right now. I still happily use my 5 year old camera model, the Pentax K10D, despite it having the same rating as the Canon 7D ;)
     
  7. DxO also ranks some DSLRs higher than MF digital backs, a laughable proposition to anyone who has ever seen prints from both. They can't measure DR to save their lives, and their tests are royally screwed up by simple variances in internal processing.
    They really need to either correct their tests or just go away. I can guarantee you that the 7D does not rank "#49" behind a "#6" K-5, and only someone who has never shot with or made prints from the two could believe such fantasy.
     
  8. Reviews are all very interesting and useful for sorting out the good from the bad and the ugly but they should all be taken with a pinch of salt. A camera does not consist entirely of a sensor but even just comparing sensors a measure of signal to noise ratio or whatever is only a number. The real test is when you take photos with it.
    By all means, having got your choice down to a shortlist, go by whatever measure seems important to you. But in the real world any of those cameras you mention will give you enough scope for most purposes. Check out the range of lenses though.
     
  9. sorry....double post
     
  10. Competition between camera makers is good in that it produces better cameras. I hope there never comes the day when one manufacturer builds the "perfect camera" making all other brands and models null and void. I got to commend Pentax for concentrating on producing sensors with not only high ISO low noise capabilities, but a wider dynamic range. Hope the other manufactures some day catch up, just as Pentax had to catch up to them.
     
  11. "only someone who has never shot with or made prints from the two could believe such fantasy."
    Are you saying dxomark has not shot with both of them? I take it you did - care to share samples to prove your point?
     
  12. Good grief! Is this all about DXO...again. Please everyone, ignore this site. It is less than reliable!
    Take what you see with the rest of the ratings sites with a grain of salt as well. I like dpreview, but even some of their test photos were not focussed properly. When they do have two good images to compare they often come to the opposite conclusion that I do, looking at the same comparison!
    I also like the site that allows you to compare lens results side-by-side, but again some of my own experiences have been different and of course that could be due to test differences or lens variation.
     
  13. Harry, Pentax has made excellent products for years. Before Sony got heavily into the DSLR market, our store carried Pentax. The reason they aren't popular isn't because of lower quality; they have menus that many people don't like (same as Olympus), and their service is absolute garbage. On the East coast, it can take two or three times as long to get a Pentax battery, or to get something repaired. I recall a K10D that took 6 months to fix under warranty. Our store dropped Pentax and Samsung for that exact reason.
    Should those companies get their act together, we'd be happy to sell them again, should we have the room in our inventory. Or if we were a store like Best Buy that didn't service things after the sale, we'd still have them.
     
  14. DxO? Purrrlease! Know any other good comedy sites?
    Apparently, the Pentax K-5 (with it's 16MP APS-C sensor) has a better sensor than the EOS 1D4, EOS 5D2, Nikon D3, Nikon D700, Hasselblad H3DII 50 and Phase One P45+. Yeah right...
     
  15. That rumor is pure idiocy.
    Whether or not the Sony CMOS is better or not (and it seems that the two are pretty on par) is completely irrelevant. Canon has waaaaay too much invested in ther own R&D and fabrication to simply mothball the factories and start buying Sony chips. Plus, that fabrication capability supports the capability to produce the full frame sensors. In a nutshell, if they were to mothball the lines making 18MP 7D, 60D, & T3i, the cost for them to produce 21MP sensors for 5D2, & 1Ds would at a minimum double or triple overnight. Plus it would cripple their R&D capability to develop the next few generations of sensors. In essence, they would be giving up their market position, and long term business interests. Does that sound like a good idea?
    Bottom line? unless something drastic happened to Canon's fab (and R&D) capability, that rumor is lunacy.
     
  16. That rumor is pure idiocy.​
    So many rumors are......
    Happy shooting,
    Yakim.
     
  17. There is no camera on the market at present that I would consider trading my 7D for from any manufacturer. That being said, Pentax has long been a maker of great cameras (I have several wonderful manual Pentax bodies and lenses) and it's great to see them still making top-tier cameras alongside the other big manufacturers. I hope they continue to do so for a very long time.
     
  18. Are you saying dxomark has not shot with both of them?
    Yes, I am. Given some of the claims made by DxO, and the lack of sample images at their site, I can't help but come to the conclusion that they do not actually shoot pictures with any of the cameras they test, preferring instead to shoot a test target only and run it through their faulty benchmarking. See Smooth Carrots response.
    I take it you did - care to share samples to prove your point?
    Feel free to head on over to DP Review or Imaging Resource. Take some samples, optimally prepare and print them to 16x24, do not label them, and see if anyone can tell you which camera produced which. After that little exercise my point will be proven.
    None of this is intended to knock any of these manufacturers. Just to make the point that sensor IQ at this stage of the game is a neck and neck race with differences so minor as to be hardly relevant. Even the gap between full frame and APS-C has dwindled considerably such that it's hard to tell the best in both categories apart except at high ISO in large prints. The post that started this thread was silly and misguided.
     
  19. Daniel-
    You make a good point, but you seem to forget how the upper end of any market works. I always use a car analogy, so this time let's use watches.
    A cheap Swatch or other quartz watch doesn't really lose time at a noticable speed. But mechanical watches do. I have an old railroad watch that, assuming it is fully wound, loses about ten seconds per day. This is considered a good, although not phenominal, benchmark. Call this the 60D. A watch like this might be $300-$500 new.
    A nicer version of the watch, with more jewels in the movement (they resist wear and friction better than metal) might cost $1,000, and only lose 8 seconds per day. Call this the 7D. It's a worthwhile upgrade for those than can afford it, but there isn't exactly a night and day difference.
    If you get something handmade in Europe, you're looking at a much larger price tag. Not only that, but there are limits to how accurate something that relies on spring-loaded, moving parts can be. An Omega Chronograph might be $5,000, and only lose a few seconds less per day. This is your 1Ds.
    As you get nearer and nearer to "perfection", or whatever the industry standard for it is, you begin to pay more and more for smaller and smaller differences. If you were a radio operator or air raid coordinator in WWII, it would be worth any cost for your timepiece to be as accurate as possible. If you were a businessman, you just needed a watch that would tell you when your meeting started. The cameras are the same. If you are a $1,000 wedding shooter, your clients are unlikely to notice small differences between cameras. If you are a $5,000 shooter, or you shoot for a multinational coorperation, your clients (or their art directors) are much more likely to notice the difference.
    If you operate at a certain level, you may find yourself (and your clients) seeing differences in equipment that 99.9% of the public doesn't even know exist.
     
  20. I'm considering a long-overdue upgrade from my 10D, and have been impressed with the K-5. The following comparison - not surprisingly - favors the K-5. But after reading it, I'm going with the 7D. Yes, the K-5 may have a little better noise and DR, but for the kind of shooting I do, I don't think I would be able to tell the difference. And, I have a 100-400 L lens which I won't give up, and Pentax does not make an equivalent.
    Oh, I know precisely when Canon will announce the 7DMkII - one week after I purchase my 7D.
    http://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-k-5-forum/145952-canon-7d-vs-pentax-k-5-comparison.html
     
  21. The reason they aren't popular isn't because of lower quality; they have menus that many people don't like (same as Olympus), and their service is absolute garbage. On the East coast, it can take two or three times as long to get a Pentax battery, or to get something repaired. I recall a K10D that took 6 months to fix under warranty. Our store dropped Pentax and Samsung for that exact reason.​
    It's a shame Pentax has come to this juncture. They have great heritage at making top notch camera gears. I can't help but see that they will go the way of Contax, which was also a great and storied camera maker.
     
  22. An Omega Chronograph might be $5,000, and only lose a few seconds less per day. This is your 1Ds.​
    I just happen to be wearing my expensive Omega Chronometer. It loses 10 seconds a day. My son's £10 Casio loses 10 seconds per MONTH! Expensive watches are nice... just don't rely on them to keep good time.
    Perhaps stick to your car anology next time ;-)
     
  23. Just use Nikon or Pentax.
     
  24. I just happen to be wearing my expensive Omega Chronometer. It loses 10 seconds a day.​
    Get that chronometer checked or serviced. It shouldn't lose that many seconds per day if it's COSC certified.
     
  25. If you are a $1,000 wedding shooter, your clients are unlikely to notice small differences between cameras. If you are a $5,000 shooter, or you shoot for a multinational coorperation, your clients (or their art directors) are much more likely to notice the difference.
    If you made a series of 16x24 prints from these two sensors and asked people to observe and report on them nobody would be able to tell which came from which at any price. That's how small the difference in the noise floor is. It's only reliably observable by doing absurd things like underexposing an image -5 EV and then pushing the shadows back up in post. To use your watch analogy, it would be like comparing a watch which loses 0.99 second per year with one that loses 1 second per year.
    It's ridiculous to split hairs between these two sensors. If you really need the lowest possible high ISO noise then pick up a 5D mkII, 1D mkIV, or D3S. At least then somebody will actually be able to see a difference in a normally exposed, high ISO, large print.
    If you operate at a certain level, you may find yourself (and your clients) seeing differences in equipment that 99.9% of the public doesn't even know exist.
    You also learn what amounts to a real difference and what amounts to static on message boards.
     
  26. The specific rumor I have heard is that Canon is going to buy Pentax, and then using the new Pentax sensor the new joint company will produce a digital version of the first Prakiflex camera from KW.
    Remember, you heard it here first.
    I'd also like to hear more about why so many DxO comparative data just seem screwy (translation: disagree with my own deeply held prejudices).
     
  27. They are both very fine cameras. And one's already-acquired lenses have a huge bearing on decisions for a body. New sensors and technology emerge on a regular basis. This year this body is the sensation, next year another body is- but the better grade lenses that especially suit one's needs are ongoing.
    I do not yet have the K-5, but still get fine results with my K20D and K200D, and do not feel deprived. Nor would I feel so if I owned a 7D with good lenses. I will probably eventually buy a K-5, but I'm in no rush.
     
  28. You can turn on the noise reduction feature in the custom settings on the 7D, it is off by default if you are going to use very high iso
    Jim
     
  29. I would suggest to all the pixel peepers arguing the merits of the 7D, K-5, D7000, etc., that you go to DPREVIEW, select the K-5 review, go to the RAW COMPARISON screen, and then look at various parts of the scene in detail. From ISO 200 to upwards, the 7D is visibly the noisiest camera of the group. The K-5 actually comes closest to a 5Dmk2, when you bring it into the comparison. The 5Dmk2 renders the best fine detail, of course and comparing fine detail puts you at the mercy of lens selection. But in terms of freedom from noise the K-5 is a very strong contender.
     
  30. Daniel, you've said you were asking "people" to try to find the difference. This is a very vague polling group.
    Let's try this from the other direction: fashion magazines are generally 9x12 sized, and it's generally accepted that 300 dpi is the most resolution that our eyes can see. Some four-colour or chemical printers use 600 dpi as a default, but RGB usually hits around 300 dpi. So a 9x12 at 300 dpi is about 9.7 megapixels.
    You are entirely correct when you say that in terms of resolution and IQ, your average Vanity Fair reader (and I include myself there) won't be able to see the difference in sensors between an H4D and a 30D, or even a Rebel XTi. But that wasn't the point I was making. My point is that if you hand, for instance, Prada's art director a disc of images that you shot with your Rebel after they paid you X thousand dollars and you said, "No one can tell the difference," they probably won't rehire you. They may not even want to pay you for the job you already did. Guys like Terry Richardson. who shoot with a point-and-shoot 35mm camera, can do that because they already have a great reputation that affords them much more creative freedom.
    I'm not saying you need expensive gear to get good jobs. What I am saying is that if you have demanding clients, and you and another guy with the exact same skill level and connections - and much better gear - are going after the same job, the other guy is going to get it. The final result might be the same to your average reader, but the people who are actually employing you will be viewing the images at 100% on a 27" Apple screen or somesuch.
     
  31. If you operate at a certain level, you may find yourself (and your clients) seeing differences in equipment that 99.9% of the public doesn't even know exist.​
    I think this is the idea. People bash dxomark because they can't translate their scores into their experience. I did the same some time ago, when after looking at the scores of my cameras I found out that my favorite had the lowest score and the camera I upgraded from was rated actually higher. But as I continued to use the cameras, I started to get a feeling that those ratings were onto something. Then I looked closer at their methodology and it started making more sense.
    The differences measured by dxomark are not of the kind you can easily evaluate by looking at test shots, except maybe for the high ISO performance. No one can look at test shots and say - "oh, by the looks of it this camera has 22 bits color depth and 13 EV dynamic range, and this other one looks to have just 20 bits color depth, but has 14 EV dynamic range". You just don't get to see those differences unless you happen to have both cameras available for shooting a challenging scene and you get to compare the results heads on - but who gets to do that? The imaging resource test shots aren't even properly focused (in the sense of always being focused on the same spot), so it's very hard to compare even basic stuff like sharpness.
    Here's one excerpt from dxomark on high ISO score (source link):
    Low-Light ISO is then the highest ISO setting for the camera such that the SNR reaches this 30dB value while keeping a good dynamic range of 9 EVs and a color depth of 18bits.​
    9EV and 18bits is the quality bar they use in this score. Even the Olympus EP2 passes this bar up to ISO 505. Most people are happy shooting images at ISO values where they no longer get this IQ - yet they are happy with it. What this tells me is that people can't really objectively appreciate IQ. Moreover, they are happy with lower IQ as long as other elements come together fine in the image. Nothing wrong with that either.
    Just to make the point that sensor IQ at this stage of the game is a neck and neck race with differences so minor as to be hardly relevant.​
    The differences are not minor, but they're not easy to notice anymore.
    So where does this leaves us? dxomark scores are still the best way we have of comparing sensor performance - I am happy they do this work. But one has to know how to read them. Also, just because a camera sensor is scored higher, doesn't mean it is superior in *all* aspects - it may still be inferior in some area while being superior in others, not to mention that attributes like resolution don't even matter for the score. Finally, most of our shots don't need the most performant sensor - the technology is already developed well enough that it doesn't provide a bottleneck for our creative output.
    As for Canon coming up with a more performant sensor, it is very unlikely unless users ask for it. If the perception in Canon market is that the 7D is the best sensor, that's all that's going to be available until the perception changes. There is no offer if the demand is lacking.
    But after reading it, I'm going with the 7D​
    And so you should. It makes no sense for you to change brands when you have an existing investment in lenses (and good ones too). The sensor is just one piece of the equation. I don't intend to upgrade any of my cameras until they break. And I don't have the K-5 either.
     
  32. For my own use I don't do much shooting in the dark with ISO above 1600 without supplemental light. The high frame rate is important for sports, air shows and wildlife shooting.Perhaps so do shoot with extremely high ISO but I am not one of them. The medium format cameras I have and have had don't go to extreme high ISO. One reason I like the Canon 7D is quick local repair. For me the Canon is a better tool.
    Jim
     

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