Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home

Show Printable Version Search this Thread
10-31-2011, 09:13 PM   #1

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Nelson B.C.
Posts: 3,284
Continuous shooting slowdown

I noticed this happening twice. When the sd card, a Lexar Platimun II 32gb gets over 500+ photos, raw format, the continuous shooting slows down by about half. I'll do a long sequence of continuous shots, filling the buffer until the camera slows down. I'll wait until it writes, then even a two or three shot sequence is slower after that.

I'm not certain the writing is slow, it feels almost like the buffer is smaller.

If I format the card, all is well.

Camera settings are constant. I get quite satisfactory continuous shooting speeds generally.

This on a K-5 with 1.11.

Forgot to mention. I got the card at London Drugs, a box store in Canada. I don't think it is counterfeit, been reliable otherwise.

10-31-2011, 10:10 PM   #2
hcc's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,537
In continuous shooting, your burst rate will slow down if:
- you have in-camera post-processing incl. lens distortion correction, high ISO correction, ....
- your buffer is full, or
- your card is too slow.

I do a lot of long hi continuous shooting, My experience suggest that:
- you must kill off all in-camera PP
- you must use JPEG for long sequence (simply because the buffer output rate cannot cope with RAW files at 5-7 fps (*)), and
- you must use a Class 10 card or faster.

Note: (*) A PF member measured the burst rate of the K-5 and find that it is often between 5 to 6 fps, shower than the official 7 fps. I measured myself the burst rate of the K-7 and I get between 5 to 5.2 fps.

From your description, I would say:
- you be better off to switch to JPEG for shooting continuously;
- get a fast SD card;
- after each sequence, wait until the shots are all written to the card and switch off any LCD preview.

Hope that the comments may help.
10-31-2011, 11:42 PM   #3
Site Supporter
Site Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Melbourne
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,926

Another possible reason for slowdowns:

When the card is full offload all pics to the computer after which you should FORMAT the card in-camera to make it ready for the next shoot.

Never selectively delete files, for example after you have taken a picture and you don't like it leave it on the card, because if you delete a lot of files that way your card will not be contiguous anymore. (Just like your hard drive in your computer) Read and write sequences will take longer and longer because empty spaces on the card are too fragmented. Also deleting, often if not always, leaves leftover bits behind.

So, never delete files off the card either in the computer or in-camera if you want to maximize read and writing speed. Always format and of course do this in-camera.

11-01-2011, 02:45 AM   #4

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Nelson B.C.
Posts: 3,284
Original Poster
Both suggestions already implemented. Continuous shooting is fast and reliable until there are around 500 photos. Then it slows down by half.

I'll copy the images, reformat, and it works fine.

Looking at today's activity. I took 87 shots, outdoors cool weather starting at 3:33 till 4:00. At the end there were 531 images on the card, all raw dng. The first dozen were individual shots, then a burst of 14. 4 individual, then two bursts of 4. A dozen or so individual shots, some single shots repeated every couple of seconds. Then another burst of 8 or so. The camera was bogging down, about half the usual rate. The light stayed on for what seemed a long time and the camera was slow to respond.

The only other factor is that it was getting a bit dark. Sun sets at 5:36, and we are in a valley of deep shadow. I'm using manual focus lenses. Hmm. Something to do with focus confirmation?

11-01-2011, 03:01 AM   #5
RonHendriks1966's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2009
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 8,714
Maybe you are using AF-C mode, this slows things down (I think, but never put attention in meassurre it).

With RAW you can't keep shooting. A full buffer takes 32 seconds to empty, so the number of shots in one minute is down to a max of 50 shots.
11-02-2011, 03:57 AM   #6
Veteran Member

Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Budapest
Posts: 821
QuoteOriginally posted by Schraubstock Quote
if you delete a lot of files that way your card will not be contiguous anymore. (Just like your hard drive in your computer) Read and write sequences will take longer and longer because empty spaces on the card are too fragmented.

I take it you have no idea how NAND memory and storage products (like SD cards) based on it work, and you've never heard of wear leveling.
11-02-2011, 05:06 AM   #7
Site Supporter
Site Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Middle of Everywhere
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,171
Do you have Focus Priority activated when in AF, C, Continuous Mode (K-5, Eng Manual, pp123)? This setting can slow things down as it requires the subject to be in focus before the shutter will fire.

My preference is "on" as I do not mind the trade-off of a slight slow down for almost always perfect focus.

Also, I've found that once your turn off all automatic in-camera image processing (it takes some deep digging into the Menus to make sure everything is off... Yes, even SR - I compensate by using shutter speeds above 1/500s which dampens blur from my movement and my subject's movement), things speed up considerably.

Cheers... M

Last edited by Michaelina2; 11-02-2011 at 05:15 AM.
11-02-2011, 07:34 PM   #8

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Nelson B.C.
Posts: 3,284
Original Poster
Yes, it was set. So it was trying to find focus and having difficulty in low light.


  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
buffer, camera, card, dslr, format, k-5, k-5 ii, k-5 iis, k5, pentax k-5, sequence
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Which mode are you? Single shooting or continuous shooting? RonakG Photographic Technique 39 03-06-2011 02:08 PM
Continuous shooting fekish Pentax DSLR Discussion 8 09-24-2010 05:58 AM
K-7 Continuous Shooting brosen Pentax DSLR Discussion 17 08-29-2010 06:24 PM
K-x continuous shooting problem. JP_Seattle Pentax DSLR Discussion 10 01-20-2010 11:23 AM
Can you disable continuous shooting? Optical Illusion Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 10 12-20-2009 04:08 PM

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:16 PM. | See also:, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]