Did I buy the worst two Nikon cameras (or are they all this bad?)

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Linda Sands, Oct 11, 2007.

  1. Linda Sands

    Guest Guest

    Huh? You can choose which one to use, it's not an issue of which to
    believe as whichever one you (or the camera) chooses will be accurate. 3
    are really too few. The D80 has 11. The Canon 350D has 7. the Canon 400D
    (XTi) has 9. 11 may be a bit of overkill, but 3 is too few. Pentax has
    11 on the K10D as well. They probably didn't want to bother to decontent
    the K100D by lowering the number of focus points, figuring that there
    are already enough real differences between the K10D and K100D to have
    to resort to that kind of decontenting.

    Where the K100D (and all Pentax film and digital SLRs) are not too great
    is in their auto-focus systems. It's very slow and noisy, still using
    the old mechanical drive. The new (and expensive) Pentax SDM lenses are
    quieter because they use an in-lens focusing motor, but surprisingly the
    reviews say they are no faster in auto-focus than the mechanical drive
    lenses. It's unlikely that a K100D user would be buying SDM lenses
    ($900-$1000) anyway, just as an EOS 350D user probably wouldn't be
    buying L lenses, but with Canon and Nikon you get fast auto-focus, with
    the in-lens motor, even with inexpensive lenses. The Pentax auto-focus
    system also requires much higher contrast than the systems used by Nikon
    and Canon. Fast, accurate, and low-contrast auto-focus has been Canon's
    forte since the EOS system came into being, and Nikon has made great
    strides in auto-focus as well.

    As one reviewer wrote (regarding the K100D): "However, this camera and
    lenses will not be used for taking pictures objects moving at high
    speed, let alone sports. The autofocus system requires relatively strong
    contrast, making the camera hunt for focus for quite some time. The
    in-camera focusing motor is too slow to allow capture of fast objects,
    such as sport. Therefore, when it comes to focus speed, it cannot be
    compared with the competition, such as the EOS 350D."

    11 focus points gives Pentax something to boast about in marketing
    literature, and it's justifiable when you're comparing against a D-SLR
    with only 3, maybe not such a big deal against a D-SLR with 7 or 9, but
    it doesn't hurt to have 11.
    Guest, Nov 6, 2007
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  2. I keep mine set on the central point, unless I explicitly want to focus
    on something off-center. Then, it's just a push of the 4-way controller
    to change the active point. The active point is highlighted in the
    viewfinder display, so I always know what the camera is doing.

    Daniel Silevitch, Nov 6, 2007
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  3. SMS ???. ? wrote:

    Thanks for the information. Now, how does the camera know which of the
    points to choose? I appreciate that you can choose manually if you wish,
    but if I'm taking a sequence of shots I really don't want to have to
    choose between 11 possible focus values each time! And the subject may be
    at different positions in the frame, too.

    David J Taylor, Nov 6, 2007
  4. Linda Sands

    Guest Guest

    have you ever actually *used* one?

    dpreview says, "Accurate and fast auto-focus, although focus motor
    slightly noisy." not surprising, given that the lenses have mechanical


    how about some numbers for full autofocus, which is 'time from fully
    pressing shutter button to image capture,' courtesy of

    pentax k100d - 0.182 seconds
    canon 1d mark ii - 0.20 seconds (16mm), 0.24 seconds (35mm)
    canon 350d - 0.24 seconds (wide), 0.20 seconds (tele)
    nikon d40 - 0.26 seconds, both wide & tele

    the pentax isn't all that slow, is it?

    that would be from this review:

    other snippets from that review include:

    However, with the K100D, they really appeal to the photographer that
    values high quality at an affordable price, rather than a better known
    brand. With the K100D, the photographer gets features that are absent
    in the pricier competition.
    The Pentax K100D is a very suitable camera for all users of Pentax 35
    mm and medium format cameras. It is also suitable for all those who are
    only entering the DSLR world and want to get an inexpensive camera that
    is chock-full of features for the advanced user.
    Another thing worth mentioning is that both kit lenses are very well
    built. They are way above average when compared to the vast majority of
    the competition in this price range.
    As far as the competition is concerned, I can state with a very clear
    conscience that the Pentax K100D is the camera that will offer the most
    bang for the buck for quite some time when compared to the cameras that
    are just entering the market or will do so shortly.
    It has everything the competition has, and more in some cases, even
    though the competition may have more alluring brand names for those who
    are buying their first (D)SLR camera and know little of how these
    cameras function.  All this at a considerably lower price.
    Guest, Nov 6, 2007
  5. Linda Sands

    Guest Guest

    I don't know the algorithm for how it chooses. You can either always use
    the center, let the camera choose, or choose manually. I expect that
    there is some sort of face detection in the mode where the camera
    chooses, but they may evaluate other factors as well.
    Guest, Nov 6, 2007
  6. SMS ???. ? wrote:
    Thanks. I'm trying to learn how to use what I have best. If I let the
    camera choose, it can sometimes choose the wrong (of the three) AF areas
    available. I hate to think how often it would be wrong with 11 areas. No
    face detection here, BTW. So I could simply set for "centre area" focus,
    focus then recompose, but then I feel I'm missing out on what I bought!
    And not so easy with subjects which move rapidly. Just looking for
    advice, and to understand how things work!

    David J Taylor, Nov 7, 2007
  7. Linda Sands

    John Turco Guest

    SMS ???• ? wrote:

    Hello, Steven:

    You seem to have a pathological hatred of all things AA, and you're none
    too crazy about Pentax, also. :-J

    John Turco <>
    John Turco, Nov 10, 2007
  8. Linda Sands

    John Turco Guest

    Hello, David:

    Are you calling my K100D a liar? :p Seriously, I've only toyed with the
    camera, to this point.

    John Turco <>
    John Turco, Nov 10, 2007
  9. Linda Sands

    John Turco Guest

    Hello, nospam:

    I decided against deleting a single word, as your brilliant refutation
    of Steven M. Sharf's anti-Pentax rhetoric speaks volumes. <g>

    John Turco <>
    John Turco, Nov 10, 2007
  10. I'm still learning as well.

    David J Taylor, Nov 10, 2007
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