Excerpt: Looking for your first DSLR or a spare to complement one you already own? The latest generation of budget DSLR's has arrived offering more for your money than ever before. How does ten million pixels for £400 sound? Not bad, eh! Step forward Pentax's K200D and the Alpha 200 from Sony. Both are aimed to appeal to beginners looking for top value for money. Daniel Lezano finds out if these budget bargains are too good to be true.
Excerpt: The latest generation of budget DSLRs has arrived offering more for your money than ever before. How does ten million pixels for £400 sound? Not bad, eh! Step forward Pentax’s K200D and the Alpha 200 from Sony. Both are aimed to appeal to beginners looking for top value for money. Daniel Lezano finds out if these budget bargains are too good to be true PENTAX 200D £500 with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL II lens Handling & ease of use: Pentax's K100D won many plaudits for its...
Conclusion: The Pentax K200D is competing in a very crowded segment of the marketplace. All manufacturers have been increasing the number of features and the quality of their cameras over the past couple of years or so and the entry-level segment is characterized by fierce competition. So, was the step that Pentax made from the K100D to the K200D enough to stay a serious alternative to the big boys in this bracket of the market?
Pros: Superb build quality for the class, weather-sealed body, Efficient image stabilization (not as good as Pentax claims though), Top LCD (but no backlight), Largest and brightest viewfinder in its class, Reliable flash exposure, Wireless flash, Intuitive menus and displays (but slightly dated design), Optional battery-grip improves handling, In-camera RAW-development (but limited options only), Good range of JPEG customization options, 11-point AF, Accurate and fast auto...
Cons: Default JPEGs too contrasty, oversharpened and smeared, JPEG engine not making the most out the camera's RAW data, No live view, Few direct buttons (but Function menu sort of makes up for it), Dynamic range in the highlights slightly below average (but efficient D-Range tool), Limited continuous shooting capability, slower than average and small buffer, Flash must be raised for AF assist (although AF works even in very low light), No Kelvin white balance option
Summary: The Pentax K200D is certainly a unique proposition in the current entry-level DSLR market. While most rival manufacturers are packing in the gadgets on their latest models, Pentax has opted for a more traditional approach, eschewing fashionable features like Live View and instead focusing on controls, customisation and build quality.
Pros: Tough and weatherproof body., Built-in Shake Reduction., Convenient AA battery power., Broad degree of customisation.
Cons: No Live View facilities., Anti-shake not as effective as rivals., Disappointing continuous shooting., Tendency to underexpose.
Excerpt: Jump to Page: K200D SLR Playback Features & Menus Function, Record and Custom Menus Bundled PENTAX Software Controls, Storage, I/O, Power Flash and Viewfinder Shake Reduction, Lens Mount, Lenses Steve's Conclusion Sample Pictures 360-degree QuickTime VR Tour Next: Playback Features & Menus Visitors of Steves can visit the stores below for real-time pricing and availability.
Excerpt: Pentax is the Rodney Dangerfield of camera companies—they just don’t get any respect. The fact they operate on a shoestring budget, have recently been taken over by lens-maker Hoya and have as much clout with your local mega-retailer as I do may have something to do with it. Many photographers made their bones with Pentax K series cameras (back in the film days) so there’s a bit of nostalgia for the brand. Most new shooters don’t know Pentax from Pampers.