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12-14-2011, 12:39 PM   #1
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Lens correction question

Shortly after getting my K-5, I discovered lens correction and enabled it both for geometry and CA. I have the kit 18-55 WR lens and so far have been really impressed with the geometric correction so far, it does a perfect job and I could care less about the processing time as I rarely review my shots post-shot. So, I started to wonder... do all Pentax DA/DA* lenses include the necessary correction data? What about third party digital lenses? Obviously, all older film lenses are lacking the correction data.

It really works well and I would have a hard time considering a *new* lens that does not have correction data.

12-14-2011, 12:45 PM   #2
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AFAIK this works for FA limited and current DA lenses only. I don't think third-party lenses are supported as the camera doesn't contain the necessary data.

A word of caution: note that the in-camera lens correction significantly slows down image write speed and maximum framerate, as additional processing is needed for every photo.

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12-14-2011, 12:53 PM   #3
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I would assume the correction data is in the lens, not the body. If it were in the body, then it would be limited to lenses that were made at the time the body was released or earlier and newer lenses would not be supported for lens correction. This is known as a "bad idea"... certainly Pentax would not make this mistake.

I could really care less about the speed, I don't shoot bursts, I only use single drive mode and I don't shoot any sports. I suppose if I were into sports photography then it could be an issue.

What about DA* lenses, are they supported with lens correction?
12-14-2011, 01:25 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by cbope Quote
I would assume the correction data is in the lens, not the body. If it were in the body, then it would be limited to lenses that were made at the time the body was released or earlier and newer lenses would not be supported for lens correction. This is known as a "bad idea"... certainly Pentax would not make this mistake.

I could really care less about the speed, I don't shoot bursts, I only use single drive mode and I don't shoot any sports. I suppose if I were into sports photography then it could be an issue.

What about DA* lenses, are they supported with lens correction?
Nope, new lenses can be added through firmware updates to the camera. If the data were in the lens, then how would an older FA Ltd. get corrected? It was made well before such technology existed.

I personally prefer to do corrections in Lightroom instead of in-camera. I shoot raw only, for one thing, and LR does it in an instant. Plus, I do sometimes shoot in continuous drive mode.

12-14-2011, 01:31 PM   #5
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Yup da*'s are supported- basically anything current is
12-14-2011, 07:20 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by cbope Quote
It would be limited to lenses that were made at the time the body was released or earlier and newer lenses would not be supported for lens correction.
The DA18-135 WR was coming on to the market
about the time that the K-x was being replaced by the K-r.

Since I would only have been interested in the DA18-135
if it was correctable in-camera in my K-x
(a quick-and-dirty lens needs a quick-and-dirty workflow),
I asked Pentax if they would update the K-x firmware
to include correction for that lens.

They said no, so I passed that lens by,
and got the Tamron 17-50 A16P
as my travel lens/kit lens replacement,
with negligible distortion at my favorite focal length of 24mm.
12-14-2011, 08:56 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
Since I would only have been interested in the DA18-135
if it was correctable in-camera in my K-x
(a quick-and-dirty lens needs a quick-and-dirty workflow),
I asked Pentax if they would update the K-x firmware
to include correction for that lens.

They said no, so I passed that lens by
Unfortunately you got bad advice. All Pentax cameras that have lens correction capability will correct Pentax DA, D FA, DA*, and FA Limited lenses. I have a K-x and DA 18-135mm, and I just tested to confirm. The K-x does apply lens corrections to the DA 18-135mm.
12-15-2011, 05:12 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
I have a K-x and DA 18-135mm, and I just tested to confirm. The K-x does apply lens corrections to the DA 18-135mm.
Very interesting!

So I have two questions for you:
1. What firmware do you have?
2. Are your corrected images from the DA18-135 at 18mm completely free of barrel distortion?

If your answers are "1.02" and "yes,"
my guess would be that they put DA18-135 correction in Version 1.02
without telling anyone about it.
AFAIK, they only announced SDXC compatibility for that version:

Latest K-x Firmware Update : Software Downloads : PENTAX

12-15-2011, 05:20 AM   #9
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Lens correction is good and bad

I generally don't bother with it unless I really need it and then I prefer doing it in post. Correction formulas will always improve.
12-15-2011, 05:51 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
Lens correction is good and bad

I generally don't bother with it unless I really need it and then I prefer doing it in post. Correction formulas will always improve.
I think lens correction is most useful for super zooms (like the 18-135). Also, the DA *16-50 is helped a lot at the wide end.

I agree that I would prefer to do it in post. Generally the photos that suffer the most are the ones at the extremes (particularly the wide end) and with lightroom you can fix it with one click. If it doesn't bother me, then I leave it alone.
12-15-2011, 06:13 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
So I have two questions for you:
1. What firmware do you have?
2. Are your corrected images from the DA18-135 at 18mm completely free of barrel distortion?

If your answers are "1.02" and "yes,"
my guess would be that they put DA18-135 correction in Version 1.02
without telling anyone about it.
I have the latest firmware, but I do not believe that matters with a DA lens. If Pentax releases a new DA lens tomorrow, my K-x will read that it is a DA lens, and corrections will be enabled. The FA Ltd lenses had to be added in firmware, because "FA Limited" was an unrecognized designation. (Unfortunately FA lenses were not added at the same time). If Pentax were to release a new lens tomorrow with a new series designation (e.g. DF 24-90mm), the K-x would need a firmware update because the correction program would not recognize a DF lens. From the manual:

"Corrections can only be made when using a DA, DA L or D FA lens. [Distortion Correction] and [Lat-Chromatic-Ab Adj] cannot be selected when an incompatible lens is attached.
[Distortion Correction] is disabled when using a DA FISH-EYE 10-17mm."


Note that FA Ltd were not originally corrected.

Cycling between these two photos is the best way to see that the barrel distortion is eliminated. K-x w DA 18-135mm @ 18mm:
https://picasaweb.google.com/100586096103361553535/DistortionCorrection?auth...r795_RvsWovAE#
12-15-2011, 06:35 AM   #12
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Read the manual Page 219 and 337 (in the English version).
12-15-2011, 06:36 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by cbope Quote
Shortly after getting my K-5, I discovered lens correction and enabled it both for geometry and CA. I have the kit 18-55 WR lens and so far have been really impressed with the geometric correction so far, it does a perfect job and I could care less about the processing time as I rarely review my shots post-shot. So, I started to wonder... do all Pentax DA/DA* lenses include the necessary correction data? What about third party digital lenses? Obviously, all older film lenses are lacking the correction data.

It really works well and I would have a hard time considering a *new* lens that does not have correction data.
The lens profile helps to significantly improve results from incomplete lenses, but it does not replace decent optical design`The best start for a quality picture is still a quality lens. Not all errors can be compensated, manufatering tolerances allow only for a global (95%) correction of errors. It is not sooo difficult to make your own correction profile for any lens, any zoom position, any focus distance, ... but it requires some in depth knowledge unless you like to play with simple sliding tools. Old lenses are old, old, old, designed for film, not for flat digital sensor with micrometer dimension pixels.
12-15-2011, 07:18 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by sterretje Quote
Read the manual Page 219 and 337 (in the English version).
My English K-x manual (H01200909/53546) only has 324 pages,
and does not address the issue here:
where the lens correction data are stored.


QuoteOriginally posted by adam Quote
AFAIK this works for FA limited and current DA lenses only. I don't think third-party lenses are supported as the camera doesn't contain the necessary data..
I had been under the impression
that all lens correction data
were stored in-camera.
I interpreted both Adam's post
and the reply I got from Pentax
as confirmation of that.

However, some new consensus appears
to be emerging from this thread:

FA LTD data are stored in-camera
(firmware, not hardware),
whereas data for DA lenses
are stored in each lens
and read by the camera in real time.

Does the same apply to MTF data
used to guide the default Program mode?
12-15-2011, 07:20 AM   #15
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I would rather do lens correction in LR. A lot of the lenses are already supported and if you have one that isn't you can create your own profile adobe supplies all the tools needed
there was a thread here with links to lens profiles PF users have created for various lenses as well

works well and then the camera isn't bogged down.

When a new version of Prime rolls out it will likely be less of an issue
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