Pentax has a new camera out, if you didn't guess. The Pentax K-3 has had rave reviews, some forum buzz, and garnered second place in The Camera Store's best category for The Best and Worst Cameras of 2013. TCS also did a field test of the K-3 in November and this little 24 megapixel wonder has haunted my wantings ever since.
So yesterday, I challenged my camera craving head-on. I went to The Camera Store and spent some time with the very patient Pentax sales guy.
My biggest concern was what is missing in the K-3. First, the K-3 has less creative filters than the K-5, but the ones I use the most (shading, base parameters, retro, pastel) are still there. Although, the shading filter is missing the two diagonal choices, unfortunately. I guess I could live with that. Accessibility to functions is still as easy as the K-5, even easier with some. Also missing is ISO 80, but really, how often do I use that?
Did I mention 24 megapixels? Cropping my photos is a (some photographers would say "nasty") habit that I can't shake and these lovely extra pixels would make the habit worse. Also... faster frames per second, better RAW buffering, 27 Auto Focus points, and dual memory card slots.
Then there's the price. At The Camera Store, which has the lowest prices anywhere, the K-3's body alone currently sells for $1239.87. The Premium silver edition with battery grip sells for $1549.45. If I stay off Amazon.ca, don't go grocery shopping for a month, and don't leave my apartment except to go to work -- I might be able to bring my savings up to where I'm not having price anxiety.
Will I need to buy another camera bag?
Okay. The K-3 is nice. Very nice. But I subscribe to the philosophy that if it isn't broken why replace it. Aside from a broken flash button (which I hardly ever use), my K-5 still works fine. But then again, what if the K-3 becomes unavailable when I really need one. Then again, Pentax has been talking about a full frame camera coming out soon (they've been saying that for years, though) that might be even better.
Then again... then again... argh!!
Yes, I want the K-3 even more now that I've actually touched it, played with it, and found that I have more to gain than lose. But "want" is not the same as "need."
The conundrum continues.
- Pentax K-3 Hands-On Field Test - The Camera Store video
- The Best and Worst Cameras of 2013 - The Camera Store video
- Pentax K-3 First Impression Review - DPReview
- Pentax K-3 review: Shooter’s Report Part I - Early thoughts from a K-5 owner -- Imaging Resource Shooter's Report
- Pentax K-3 Review, Part 1 - Imaging Resource
- Pentax K-3 - PC Magazine
- Digital Camera Comparison Chart - PC Magazine compares the Pentax K-3 with the Canon 70D, Nikon D7100, and the Sony Alpha 77.