Wednesday, August 1, 2018

New Camera

I have been looking to upgrade from my Pentax K10D ever since my aurora trip to Alaska.  The K10D is a fine camera, but ISO 1600 is as high as it goes and it has no video capacity.  I bought a used Pentax KS-2 body on Amazon, described as "Used--Like New."  There is no evidence of prior use.  The first Pentax lens went into a focus hunting frenzy.  The contacts on the lens were dirty.  After cleaning everything worked well.

The KS-2 goes up to ISO 51,200 and has a 20MP sensor.  I am not sure these pictures show this.  (300mm 1/60 of a second, ISO 100, f/5.6)

The KS2 body is smaller and lighter than the K10D, but the lens is almost always the heavy part.  At least when doing prime focus astrophotography where the telescope is the lens, less weight is an advantage.

And the frustrations: they have changed the USB connector from the K10D to micro B, of which I have not a single such cable; the WiFi only works to smartphones and tablets, not to the sort of computers you would actually use for image enhancement; Pentax's Digital Camera Utility only comes with the CD that was not with a used camera, and Pentax will only provide updates to the version that came on the CD.  Why?  Admittedly, I will likely not use it.

To my surprise and pleasure, it has a built-in time lapse feature.

Of course, at the higher ISO numbers you get some grain:
This was ISO 40,000 at dusk with smoke covered skies f/8, 28mm fl, 1/800 second.

Pan slowly in video mode to allow auto focus to catch up.

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