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11-12-2010, 09:51 AM - 1 Like   #1
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Labo FNAC tests K-5 & Co., esp. AF-C

The new forum layout has no perfect place for such threads but I want it here...

As posted on DPR, FNAC in France has published test results for the K-5 including an AF.C test.

FNAC is France's biggest consumer electronics retail chain and they run an own test laboratory. On first glimpse, they seem to leave any other testing lab (DPR etc.) in the dust. E.g., the have a shake reduction simulation robot to simulate unharmonic shake. And they have an optical bench capable of simulating moving targets at arbitrary speed and distance. For both they say to be world leading and for the latter, I can believe it (I know of another SR simulator in Germany though). Beyond, they cooprate with DxO labs which are in the same city (I assume).

The original thread where this was published is here:

*Pentax K-5 - * 16.3 Mpix stabilisé- (cashback) [ Topic unique ] - Page : 42 - Appareil - Photo numérique - FORUM HardWare.fr



The full source of testing data are the following four documents (in reverse chronological order):I would download the 1st document as it's source seems to be inofficial.

Note that the AF scale is reversed in the 2008 document.

On first glimpse (as being layed out in the original thread) the K-5 AF.C destoys the K-7 AF.C and is on par with D7000 and 60D, actually a bit ahead of them.

However, I really recommend to browse thru the above two documents. They are a very interesting read anyway!

E.g., you'll find that a 1000D AF.C leaves anything in the dust, incl. a 7D

So, take the results with a grain of salt. Esp. as I couldn't find an exact source of testing conditions (AF point?, AF.C sub mode? etc.). Moreover, the lenses do vary (switched from K-7 to K-5 and I wonder which 70-200/2.8 lens on Pentax they actually used...

Moreover, I think they rate sharpness at 100% crop which represents an advantage for the lower resolving bodies. So, the results for a higher resolving body should be read giving the results a more favorite interpretation.

Anyway, the attachment shows my own compilation of results for recent Pentax bodies.

I read the result for the K-5 as follows: It doesn't hesitate anymore with the subject approaching near and continues to fire away. And continues to deliver sharp results until the last 1 or 2 photos.

Taking the distance of the last sharp photo as an indicator, then K-5 is a signifiant step forward. Overall, K-5 seems to be the first Pentax body delivering AF.C FNAC charts like the better bodies from other vendors. And a 50D beats a 60D which again may be due to FNAC's resolution bias.

Attached Images
 

Last edited by falconeye; 11-14-2010 at 04:55 AM.
11-12-2010, 10:02 AM   #2
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My interpretation of the discrepancy of the result K-7 vs. K-x (same lens):

The K-7 delivers photos at ..., 25m, 21m, 15m.

The K-x delivers photos at ..., 25m, 22m, 16m, 8m.

The last image at 8m was possible because the 2nd last 1m farer away but turned out fuzzy).

The two images at 21/22m and 15/16m turn out sharp for K-x and fuzzy for K-7 which explains why the K-7 looks that much worse than the K-x.

However, knowing the AF of both cameras, I think the difference wasn't real. Rather, the K-x looked better at 100% because of their lower resolution and after correcting for it, both would probably score the same.

And because the lens doesn't seem to make a big difference when going from a 80-200 to a 70-200 for the K-r vs. K-x, the better result for the K-5 over K-7 may be significant. The K-5 has an even higher resolution.
11-12-2010, 10:03 AM   #3
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Great news! Although I'm not sure if I can trust their testing procedures, user reports here also indicate much better AF.
I must say Pentax impresses with the K-5 - they've managed to improve on the K-7 exactly where improvement was needed.

It only remains to see if shutter-induced blur is gone
11-12-2010, 10:11 AM   #4
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What's also interesting to note is how the K-7/K-x were irregular. And that is my experience as well. The K-5 shows a steady rate, about twice the K-7 rate actually. This is really very encouraging, and I hope that Pentax will stay there for their next camera (more AF points, etc.).

11-12-2010, 10:14 AM   #5
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Falk, surely FNAC took the resolution factor into account, no? I'm pretty sure they don't review the shots at 100%, but rather full-screen.

But I don't work at the Labo (nickname of their benchmark dept.), so maybe they do review shots at 100%. Would be kinda dumb to go all the way to automated benches just to ruin things at the last second.
11-12-2010, 10:21 AM   #6
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Something strange is that for the K5, the SR test shows a 0.2% floor of blurred pics even with SR off, whereas other cameras are around 0.1%... Shutter blur again?
11-12-2010, 10:40 AM   #7
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I have to say they la Fnac tests do not usually have a good reputation among people with a minimum of knowledge on the subject (they are really really really consumer oriented and sometimes produce inconsistent results). Their sellers sometimes really have no knowledge in photography. I remember the head chef of the "labo" making a video in order to explain how to choose a camera. That was a load of sh/t.
I would take the results with a ladle of salt.
11-12-2010, 11:09 AM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by dlacouture Quote
Would be kinda dumb to go all the way to automated benches just to ruin things at the last second.
Would not be the first occasion where I see this happen.

Some consumer-oriented testers don't normalize results. Rather, they argue that the MPixel number makes part of the camera's selling argument and so, it must face harder testing conditions.

This is why I would prefer a chart, x-axis is the distance (like now) and y-axis is the edge blur on some defined control feature they leave in the subject. This way, everybody could rescale results between different camera resolutions.

BTW, they already do something similiar for the SR blur except I don't know what their %-scale means.

---------- Post added 11-12-10 at 08:12 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by dlacouture Quote
Something strange is that for the K5, the SR test shows a 0.2% floor of blurred pics even with SR off, whereas other cameras are around 0.1%... Shutter blur again?
I noticed the same. Probably, they missed perfect focus. Or the camera sharpening was low. Or the lens used isn't a perfect match for 16MP. I don't know what their %-scale means. Let's hope it's an oversight and not an indication of imprecise AF (I don't think so though).

Shutter blur doesn't happen at the exposure times they tested at.

---------- Post added 11-12-10 at 08:21 PM ----------

One more question ...

In 2010, they used the 80-200/2.8 IF ED which is a Pentax FA* lens.

However, what is this 70-200/2.8 IF ED lens they are using now?

---------- Post added 11-12-10 at 08:27 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Zav Quote
I have to say they la Fnac tests do not usually have a good reputation among people with a minimum of knowledge on the subject (they are really really really consumer oriented and sometimes produce inconsistent results).
I can't speak for sellers and other departments. But maybe their camera lab is better than their reputation.

I got the impression that they rush their tests. I see some rather ugly inconsistencies. But if done carefully, their tests seem to be rather good. Their methodology is outstanding (ok, DxO beats them for raw sensor performance). But unharmonic SR shake robots, texture preservation plot vs. NR in their noise charts, a AF.C simulation bench, etc.? Who else can compete?

The presentation of results is poor and they probably have to few people for too many tests. But otherwise ...

11-12-2010, 12:58 PM   #9
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I think we have to let the camera talk. Up to now what we saw from normal user is great. Pentax have done a great camera for user who know how to take photo . Mine is on order and I will enjoy it and I know I bought a great camera., point simple.
11-12-2010, 02:17 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
I can't speak for sellers and other departments. But maybe their camera lab is better than their reputation.

I got the impression that they rush their tests. I see some rather ugly inconsistencies. But if done carefully, their tests seem to be rather good. Their methodology is outstanding (ok, DxO beats them for raw sensor performance). But unharmonic SR shake robots, texture preservation plot vs. NR in their noise charts, a AF.C simulation bench, etc.? Who else can compete?

The presentation of results is poor and they probably have to few people for too many tests. But otherwise ...
They may have an outstanding methodology and tools and in this case, I think what they are doing is really "jeter de la confiture aux cochons".

La Fnac is really not a trusted reference on french forums and among french photographers. As bobmaxja says, let the camera talk.
11-12-2010, 02:18 PM   #11
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K-5 AF.C results are very encouraging. The SR improvement seems a bit weak. Not sure how to interpret them. I wonder if other reviews will find this.

Why did they give the D90 4 stars - the same as the K-5 - when in many categories it had a lower score?

The K-7 seems outclassed.

Dan
11-12-2010, 02:42 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
The new forum layout has no perfect place for such threads but I want it here...

As posted on DPR, FNAC in France has published test results for the K-5 including an AF.C test.

FNAC is France's biggest consumer electronics retail chain and they run an own test laboratory. On first glimpse, they seem to leave any other testing lab (DPR etc.) in the dust. E.g., the have a shake reduction simulation robot to simulate unharmonic shake. And they have an optical bench capable of simulating moving targets at arbitrary speed and distance. For both they say to be world leading and for the latter, I can believe it (I know of another SR simulator in Germany though). Beyond, they cooprate with DxO labs which are in the same city (I assume).

The original thread where this was published is here:

*Pentax K-5 - * 16.3 Mpix stabilisé- (cashback) [ Topic unique ] - Page : 42 - Appareil - Photo numérique - FORUM HardWare.fr



The full source of testing data are the following two documents:I would download the 2nd document as it's source seems to be inofficial.

On first glimpse (as being layed out in the original thread) the K-5 AF.C destoys the K-7 AF.C and is on par with D7000 and 60D, actually a bit ahead of them.

However, I really recommend to browse thru the above two documents. They are a very interesting read anyway!

E.g., you'll find that a 1000D AF.C leaves anything in the dust, incl. a 7D

So, take the results with a grain of salt. Esp. as I couldn't find an exact source of testing conditions (AF point?, AF.C sub mode? etc.). Moreover, the lenses do vary (switched from K-7 to K-5 and I wonder which 70-200/2.8 lens on Pentax they actually used...

Moreover, I think they rate sharpness at 100% crop which represents an advantage for the lower resolving bodies. So, the results for a higher resolving body should be read giving the results a more favorite interpretation.

Anyway, the attachment shows my own compilation of results for recent Pentax bodies.

I read the result for the K-5 as follows: It doesn't hesitate anymore with the subject approaching near and continues to fire away. And continues to deliver sharp results until the last 1 or 2 photos.

Taking the distance of the last sharp photo as an indicator, then K-5 is a signifiant step forward. Overall, K-5 seems to be the first Pentax body delivering AF.C FNAC charts like the better bodies from other vendors. And a 50D beats a 60D which again may be due to FNAC's resolution bias.
Falk,

Remember a while back when we were discussing the way Chasseur Images did their tests for AF .... this is it!

Thanks for posting, very interesting and precise.

Cheers.

JP
11-12-2010, 03:09 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by falconeye Quote
One more question ...
In 2010, they used the 80-200/2.8 IF ED which is a Pentax FA* lens.
However, what is this 70-200/2.8 IF ED lens they are using now?[COLOR="Silver"]
[
My simple guess is that it's a typo (and it's a very easy one to make) and it's the same lens.

It is strange about the SR test, though. Note that the K-7 was also high compared to the others. Since I'm not really sure either what these percents mean, it's hard to draw any real conclusion.
11-12-2010, 05:33 PM   #14
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How fast were their moving targets moving?
11-12-2010, 07:23 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arpe Quote
How fast were their moving targets moving?
That's written somewhere in the PDFs. 50 km/h for the car and 5 km/h for the walker. The scale is in m. The focal length is 80mm/1.5 for the first and 200mm/1.5 for the second test. Note that 80/1.5 (55mm) isn't in the focal length range of the indicated lens, so the first test must use another lens.

Last edited by falconeye; 11-12-2010 at 07:28 PM.
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