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1 12589 10/25/2005
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1pentax-ds.jpg



  • 6.1-megapixel CCD delivers 3,008 x 2,008 pixel images
  • ISO from 200 to 3,200
  • 2.0" LCD monitor
  • Convenient SD media card storage and High Speed USB 2.0 data transfer
  • Compatible with all Pentax K-mount lenses
  • Excellent user interface, many clever (and useful) features

(From company literature) The *ist DS defies convention. Weighing less than 18 ounces, this super-light, ultra-compact marvel boasts one of the worldís smallest camera bodies yet houses an impressive array of features for astonishing image clarity and performance. A 6.1 megapixel CCD with advanced processing technology for high-definition images rich in gradation and saturation. Interchangeability with a wide selection of existing PENTAX lenses for convenience and versatility. An 11-point autofocus with SAFOX VIII for quick and accurate focus. And a host of user-friendly features including a high-magnification viewfinder, a large two-inch LCD monitor and data panel, and an innovative Auto Picture mode for fast and effortless operation. All packed into an attractive, sturdy casing. The perfect blend of portability and performance, the *ist DS is the ideal traveling companion for beginners and advanced photographers of every level.


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Keywords: Pentax SLR SD APS-C 6MP


mu55ster

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 9
Pentax *ist DS review by mu55ster
Review Date: 10/25/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 0 

 
Pros: Small, light, easy to use
Cons: Jpeg quality (if your picky)

This camera is the best one I've ever owned, it's small, light, very easy to use and the pictures are great (depending on the lens of course). The controls are really easy to use and the menus are quite easy to navigate although once you set it up you probably won't use them again. ISO 200 can be limiting outside in bright sunlight (only once so far) but gives my metz flash more range.


The best thing about this camera is that you can use the old Pentax prime lenses, I'm trying to build a collection of the A series lenses, the 50mm f2 I got on ebay for $30 has about as much resolution as the sensor needs, nice and sharp even before any sharpening in raw or PS. The viewfinder is nice and bright - large compared to the canon and nikons, but still much smaller than 35mm (although it does have a smaller mirror, so makes sense), it is easy to focus in bright light but indoors it can be harder with the manual focus lenses. The camera is also remarkably plesant to use with the maunal focus lenses, very well balcanced, it has that feel to it, pressing the shutter and taking a shot is almost like stress relief.


On the down side, the JPEG qualitly is no where near the RAW because it blocks in some detail - best to shoot RAW and convert using photoshop, this allows you to turn off the "shadow" setting, you'll see what a difference it makes - it's the only thing seperating the image quality of the DS from the D70's JPEG, RAW is very similar (same sensor). The other thing I'm not too keen on is that with a manual focus lens on the camera and the AF/MF switch on AF the camera won't fire until the focus is approved by the camera (sounds obvious but easy to forget, then you try a grab shot or recompose slightly... and nothing happens).


The camera falls very nicly into my hands and is easy to carry around. I wish it had a small battery grip so that I could make it look alittle more professional sometimes, it would also help balance the sigma 18-125, which is quite large on such a small camera.


Everytime I see someone take out thier prized D70 with 18-200 super zoom from their over sized camera bag it makes me think what great decision I made, the pentax with a 28mm prime slung over my shoulder or in a bag nearly half the size with another 2 primes, it's just so much easier, so much less intrusive.


As funny as it looks bolted on to that huge Metz 45 hammer head flash of mine I love this little camera, very well made and thought out, makes the 350D feel like a toy (even though the images from it are probably slightly better).


 






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