Since the introduction of K20D, the new Pentax top-of-the line model, the price of the 1½ year old K10D has plummeted. At the time of writing, it is available for less than 5.000 DKr. (approx. 665 €) with the kit lens. That is so cheap, that it would be almost irresponsible not to by one. So that’s what I did 😉
The following is not a review – just some random thoughts before and after the purchase. K10D was the centre of much attention when was launched, won several awards and was reviewed a lot of places – mostly favourably. Detailed evaluations can easily be found on the net. Some examples are DPReview, with a typical exhaustive list of features, while the review on Imaging resource and Photo.net are more centred on real user experience…
Despite the attractive price I hesitated a bit. The K10D had grown a bit in comparison with my old *istDS, and the compact form factor was one of the reasons why I originally chose Pentax. An alternative would have been the new K200D, which has the shake-reduction, weather-sealing and 10 MP sensor in common with the K10D – but in a body the same size as *istDS.
But in the end I’m glad that I chose the K10D. First of all, the controls are exceptionally well laid out, including two, partly programmable, input-dials. The K200D has more limited controls. The viewfinder has a true penta-prism and is very good – while the K200D has a less exceptional penta-mirror.
Compared to the *istDS the autofocus are definitely faster and more precise. The image quality also strikes me as improved: while the DS has a tendency for exposing slightly to the left, the K10D is much more spot on. I’m not sure if it’s the higher resolution or better exposure, but it seems like there is a higher dynamic range with more shadow details.
In less than two weeks I have grown used to using a slightly bigger camera. To be fair, the K10D is still lighter and more compact than comparable models, such as the Nikon D200 and the Canon 40D.