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Old September 18th, 2009, 12:39 PM   #1
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New low-cost Pentax K-x w/HD video!

Compact, lightweight body
The PENTAX K-x is one of the most compact, lightweight digital SLR cameras in its class. The stainless-steel chassis and overall design offer a space-efficient layout.

Widescreen HD movie recording at 1280x720 pixels at a cinematic 24 frames per second (720p24)
The PENTAX K-x movie recording function*1 captures true-to-life movie clips in 16:9 high-definition TV proportions (1280 x 720 pixels) at a frame rate of 24 frames per second. Compatible with every PENTAX interchangeable lens ever made, the Video Capture mode opens a new world of creativity for PENTA K-x owners.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 02:58 PM   #2
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With F3.5 looks like truly expen$ive home movie camera. Most likely horrible motion effects and again- sound issues.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 04:49 PM   #3
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Aside from frame rate, will this provide the same video quality as the K-7? Just purchased a K-7 package, and am wondering if this would provide a viable option when 24P is called for.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 08:44 PM   #4
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Robert, dude, this is an interchangeable lense camera. Who cares what the kits is, when you are paying $650 for the package? Pentax has a vast array of excellent lenses and great backward compatibility.

Your home movie shooters wouldn't want 24P, and probably dont care about having an APS-sized sensor with reduced DoF either, but for a lot of independent film-makers .... that's EXACTLY what they want.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 05:08 AM   #5
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Just bayonet the superb and knife-sharp SMC-M 24mm f/2 or FA SMC *85mm f/1.4 IF or SMC-A* 135mm F/1.8 or SMC-A 200mm f/2.8 or FA 300mm F2.8 IF or FA 600mm f/4 and see what happens... :)
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Old September 19th, 2009, 12:32 PM   #6
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Manufacturer Product Page:

K-x White - Official PENTAX Imaging Web Site
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Old September 19th, 2009, 01:54 PM   #7
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Interesting thing is the sensor-based image stabilization - would be nice to use this combined with my old manual pentx lenses (assuming it works in video mode).

Unfortunately they went with MJPEG for the video codec though. No word on data rate but considering it's SD based I wouldn't expect it to be particularly high. Expect it'll fall apart with motion pretty easily.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 02:55 PM   #8
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QUOTE> will this provide the same video quality as the K_7?

The Kx has the same Prime-II imaging engine as the K7, but a different, non-Samsung CMOS sensor (12.4Mp vs. 14.6Mp in the K7). The Kx is capable of up to 720p24, vs. up to 1024p30 for the K7. Quality-wise, too soon to say but I would anticipate the K7 will be better.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 10:36 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Graham Hickling View Post
Robert, dude, this is an interchangeable lense camera. Who cares what the kits is, when you are paying $650 for the package? Pentax has a vast array of excellent lenses and great backward compatibility.

Your home movie shooters wouldn't want 24P, and probably dont care about having an APS-sized sensor with reduced DoF either, but for a lot of independent film-makers .... that's EXACTLY what they want.
Most of the footage I saw shot with DSLR (both Nikon and Canon) looked like shit. No matter how good your depth of field, how good of the lens, these cameras don't handle motion worth of crap. Plus the sound is pure garbage. Any EX1 blows these rigs out of the water, period- Not to mention HPX 300, HPX500 or PDW 355- all under 30K. 24p and DOF doesn't make a movie. You want "movie look"- shoot film- simple. Get a budget, rent a camera, buy stock and shoot. But don't fool yourself- these indy "movies" won't make it even to DVD release, not to mention a big screen. Honestly- if the only thing you can afford is DSLR don't bother hoping for big screen release. Honestly- you can make the same product with HV40. That's why imo it's a home camera and nothing more.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 11:00 AM   #10
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Most of the footage I saw shot with DSLR (both Nikon and Canon) looked like s**t. No matter how good your depth of field, how good of the lens, these cameras don't handle motion worth of crap. Plus the sound is pure garbage...
Robert, tell us how you really feel. :)

Owning the 5D2, the challenge is to stabilize the camera well, and use a filter if there is fine detail that will alias. If you take those two precautions, you can get great video.

Also, the sound on the 5D2 is actually very, very good - if you use an external preamp, like a juicedLink, and run Magic Lantern to disable the auto gain.

6. Canon 5D Mark II Audio Exposed - Conclusions on Vimeo

If you're shooting fine lace, handheld, on a boat in a windstorm with the built-in mic, yes, the HV40 will trounce any HDSLR. On the other hand, if you're shooting a romantic scene in a naturally lit restaurant, using a dolly, jib, steadicam, or tripod, the 5D2 (with good lenses, filters, preamp, and mic) will shred any small-chip camera.

It's all about knowing the strengths and weaknesses of the tools and using them properly. It's also about knowing your vision and choosing the right tool for the job - and the budget.
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Old September 21st, 2009, 12:28 AM   #11
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Jon, Juicelink or other device- the signal still gets compressed- this is a real issue. I am working on a documentary, where some of the footage was shot with DVX100, some with HD100, some with EX1 and now some with HM100. You can't even compare compressed sound from DVX and sound recorded from EX1 or HM100 -uncompressed, even to untrained ear. Even low budget docs will have a separate sound person with 16 or 24 bit LPCM recorder.
Honestly- movie industry is not in a business of wasting money. If DSLR would produce adequate picture even for DVD release they would use it- trust me.
Maybe the technology will get there in a year or two, but now it simply not there. So, no even this Pentax doesn't go beyond home use capabilities
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Old September 21st, 2009, 02:27 AM   #12
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Jon, Juicelink or other device- the signal still gets compressed
That's not true for the 5D Mark II. The audio is 44.1 kHz, 16-bits PCM uncompressed. In the case of the 7D, the sample rate is 48 kHz. And with a clean preamp and Magic Lantern, the 5D2 gives true 16-bit performance.

We recorded the audio of our recent 48-hour project into the camera, and it sounded great in the theater.

Dream Job on Vimeo

In fact, look closely at the video. You won't find rolling shutter problems. There's minimal aliasing. Aside from special effects shots, we only corrected five or so shots. The rest is untouched from the camera.

No video camera in this price range could provide this result including the shallow DOF. (Red One? Yes. Film? Yes. But those cost well over five times as much.)

HDSLRs offer budget filmmakers something that we could never afford before - shallow DOF with extremely low noise.

And, yes, they are imperfect. But with skill, the imperfections are a non issue.
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Old September 21st, 2009, 10:14 AM   #13
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Jon, I should have checked Canon, but both Nikon and Panasonic have sound compression. As the matter of fact sound recorded (with a decent microphone) on Nikon was quite bad. I think it will be very hard to compare Canon 5D to K7. Canon 5D is a professional camera, costing 5 times more then Pentax or almost 2 times more then D90. So in a sense your argument doesn't contradict my statement- K7 will have most likely performance good enough for serious amateur use.
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Old September 21st, 2009, 12:41 PM   #14
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Yeah, there are DVSLRs and then there are DVSLRs.

The big difference between the top Canon cams and many of the lower priced entries is...

* uncompressed audio
* 1080p (many, including the K-x are 720)
* high quality video encoding (h.264 at 40 to 48 mbps)
* moderate rolling shutter (it's 25ms top to bottom on the 5D2)
* price (though the 7D is "only" $1,700)

Before long, DVSLRs will solve their aliasing problems and speed up the sensors to get rid of the jello. And video cameras will integrate large DVSLR sensors. The revolution isn't being televised, but you can follow it online. :)

BTW, my sons are up in Bellingham (one at Western, the other at Whatcom). We shot The Murder of Dirk Snowglobe, a 15-minute short, up there with the 5D2. We submitted it to the Seattle International Film Festival, but didn't get in. (3,000 entries for 150 spots.) We're now reworking it, and will submit it to other festivals later this week. Soon, they plan to promote an on-campus showing of our previous films to help fund this crazy stuff. :)
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Old September 21st, 2009, 04:58 PM   #15
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Before long, DVSLRs will solve their aliasing problems
I don't see how they can without making the stills look soft. This is the problem with a hybrid camera. The requirements for good stills are totally different to those of video.

I've laid into the 5D and 7D a lot. Although as a DSLR to take on holiday that I can also get adequate footage with I wouldn't mind one. But the aliasing alone, never mind the sound, puts it on the 'don't bother' list for me as far as professional work goes.
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