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02-25-2012, 08:58 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Soligor Quote
OK , I get it.

Sadly that means that the low-light capabilities of the K5 are rather disappointing. I did expect that a camera with ISO up to 51200 together with a fast lens like 1.4 would be perfect for low-light photography. Perhaps I have to return it.
Return it for sure. But before you buy another camera, do your homework.
I've listed a few cameras from other manufacturers along with their low end metering range to give you a start:
Nikon D4 EV-1
Nikon D800 EV 0
Nikon D7000 EV 0
Canon EOS 1DX EV 0
Canon EOS 5d Mark II EV 1
Canon EOS 7D EV 1
Pentax K5 EV 0

It looks like the Nikon D4 will meter 1 stop lower than the K5, so for 6 grand, you can do a little better than the K5.

02-25-2012, 11:00 AM   #17
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I don't understand the problem you're having at all, I shoot in similar conditions quite often. Typically TAV mode with Auto ISO 80-40000 on a DA* 55 f/1.4, EV Comp -1.0...but in the lighting I deal with the ISO rarely crawls above 3200. As long as I don't meter on a light source directly, I get a decent exposure. The K-5 is the best camera I've yet used for night shooting.

1/100s, f/2.8, ISO 2500


Here's an image with a particularily low EV value (average 1.5EV):
1/60s, f/2, ISO 6400

02-27-2012, 07:29 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Soligor Quote
*Misunderstanding*

The K5 can focus, as I pointed out previously (I apologize if my English is not perfect). It is the threefold blinking that puzzles me. So when you do your interior shootings do you experience the blinking of all the three values?
The threefold blinking is irrelevant - it is just telling you the shot will underexpose and you should change a value. If you continue with the shot, once focus is confirmed if you have focus priority enabled, then the shutter will fire.
02-27-2012, 07:41 AM   #19
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Didn't one of the firmware updates correct/help a problem with low light shooting?

02-27-2012, 08:53 AM   #20
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Street view. 1/100 F4 25600 ISO • Pentax DA 10-17mm f:3.5-4.5 fisheye

02-27-2012, 10:54 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Soligor Quote
I have checked it with various other lenses (also with the DA18-55) with the same result.

Maybe I expressed myself unclearly. The shutter is released, thus this is not about AF.

It is the blinking of the three values that is strange to me because

1) It is hard to understand what the "blinking" actually indicates. Is it a "use a tripod" warning or does it mean "now it's too dark to take a shot even with a tripod"?
2) it does not only occur in nighttime situations but also during daytime in certain dark corners indoors (could that be below EV 0?),
3) I encounter it also in M mode, and
4) the phenomenon is nowhere mentioned in the manual, what is mentioned is the blinking of only one of the three values, not all three of them together.

Peter
2. All Exposure values flashing, the measured light/exposure is below 0EV and outside the camera's METERING RANGE. (Basically the exposure parameters will change until they light level falls below 0EV, then all items will freeze at the last valid measurement, and flash)

Pentax, when its unable to provide a correct exposure, leaves it up to the user... whilst the values are flashing (whether you find this annoying or not) you are able to still set the exposure manually.
With an f1.4 lens ISO51,200 and manual exposures to 30s you can theoretically take accurate exposures down to -13EV. I don't think I've seen a hand held ambient light meter that goes below -2EV

When the light is within the 0EV - 22EV the display will flash the item that has reached its limit (ie exposure has hit 30s) then if the value you have taken direct control of, say aperture, can be altered to prevent incorrect exposure the line under f no (Viewfinder) and the pointer (top LCD) will flash. If the aperture can't be opened far enough then the ISO value will flash as being the arbitrary limiting item and either: You'll need to change it to obtain a correct exposure; or (if you have Auto EV compensation set to On) the camera will override this element of the exposure parameters.


You'll have to provide an example of the interiors you want to shoot, they're sounding pretty dungeon like. Oh and don't fall for a lens of f1.4 being better for low light interiors... its depth of field doesn't deepen as light levels fall.
02-27-2012, 12:22 PM   #22
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I don't think that in manual mode the values should be flashing. I've taken my fair share of night shots, and the flashing usually tells me to get into manual mode. I suppose it might flash if I press the green button in manual mode, but I certainly don't recall having the flashing going on when I am manually adjusting my exposure. Perhaps the OP does in fact have a faulty unit.

However, as others have pointed out, the camera can't provide miracles. I'm not sure how dark you are shooting in, but if it is that dark, all the ISO in the world isn't going to make a great shot. I find it most useful in those cases where I should be using a tripod but can't (i.e. I end up hand-holding). I also find it useful when shooting a long lens at smaller apertures and wanting the faster shutter speed. Once it is really dark, the high ISO settings don't help much. That's where they tend to get noisy. I've only used them for some occasional astrophotography to avoid star trails.

By the way, there should never be a too slow for tripod warning. Your tripod is independent of your camera, and I doubt the camera will know just how good your tripod is.
02-27-2012, 12:51 PM   #23
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Maybe time to haul out the LX?

02-27-2012, 08:51 PM   #24
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Photo of nighttime exposure in S.F.

This Photo was taken in San Francisco on Feb-11-12 @ 9PM with overcast skies using the
following equipment and settings.

PENTAX K5 with (DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR) @ 24mm

Camera was set to GREEN Mode, F-4, 1/8 Sec, ISO-3200, MM=Pattern, No Flash, Hand Held/No Tripod.

The Transamerica building has a structural height of 260 m (850 ft) and contains 48 floors.

Giving that the only source of light was ambient light from the city I think the
nighttime exposure of the K5 is not too shabby.
Attached Images
 
02-27-2012, 09:21 PM   #25
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If you COULD adjust the ISO to get the meter in range to quit blinking, your picture would be like daylight, totally washed out, and not like the darkness you are photographing. Night photos should be dark and manual experimentation or focusing on a spot of light area only, is the only way to get a night time shot that is realistic. Metering light for the whole frame can't work. Go to manual and try various shutter speeds, iso, and aperture. You'll get what you want unless you want a night vision camera.
02-27-2012, 09:49 PM   #26
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Just reading through all of that, just some thoughts....

1. Could You please provide some examples on the "threshold" moment? I mean, the thin moment in ambient light after which K5 goes blinking? (with EXIF)
2. I do agree with others, when I started to play with my K5 I was astonished by its low light capabilities. During a total night I was making a photos with max ISO. Yes, they were/are unusable, but they are viewable! It is an incredible moment, when You shot a face of person in front of you, barely visible, and you see everything on your LCD...that shows things that are beyond your eye capabilities!!!
02-27-2012, 09:50 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by emalvick Quote
I don't think that in manual mode the values should be flashing. I've taken my fair share of night shots, and the flashing usually tells me to get into manual mode. I suppose it might flash if I press the green button in manual mode, but I certainly don't recall having the flashing going on when I am manually adjusting my exposure.
I think you've misread what the OP said. Nowhere does he mention manual mode (in fact quite the opposite as he states The shutter is released, thus this is not about AF. ). As I mentioned above the threefold blinking is irrelevant - it is just telling you the shot will underexpose and you should change a value.

I absolutely agree that manual mode is the way to go for night time shooting.
02-28-2012, 05:16 AM   #28
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The OP is complaining about the metering range. The K5 is on par with most every camera made regarding this. The Nikon D4 is one stop better, most other cameras are the same or one stop worse.
His problem is a lack of understanding about how light meters work, not withe the K5 specifically. He'll have the same problem with any camera he buys.
02-28-2012, 06:26 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Col Quote
When the light is within the 0EV - 22EV the display will flash the item that has reached its limit (ie exposure has hit 30s) then if the value you have taken direct control of, say aperture, can be altered to prevent incorrect exposure the line under f no (Viewfinder) and the pointer (top LCD) will flash. If the aperture can't be opened far enough then the ISO value will flash as being the arbitrary limiting item and either: You'll need to change it to obtain a correct exposure; or (if you have Auto EV compensation set to On) the camera will override this element of the exposure parameters.
---
I think what the OP is concerned about, is that all three exposure values begin blinking well before any value has reached its limit.
For example in Tv mode ( with a setting where it is slightly dark) with auto iso at 200, a shutter speed of say 2.5 sec and an aperture of 8, all three values will begin blinking. One then can change any value and watch the other value(s) change,(the camera must be still metering) but all values remain blinking.
02-28-2012, 08:49 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by OK5 Quote
---
I think what the OP is concerned about, is that all three exposure values begin blinking well before any value has reached its limit.
For example in Tv mode ( with a setting where it is slightly dark) with auto iso at 200, a shutter speed of say 2.5 sec and an aperture of 8, all three values will begin blinking. One then can change any value and watch the other value(s) change,(the camera must be still metering) but all values remain blinking.
Agreed, that's why I answered that part first. His assumption number 2 that metering levels had gone below 0EV being the correct cause of all parameters flashing
... (this was also in my reply to him when he asked the same question on dpr)
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