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05-06-2011, 05:45 PM   #31
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I've found the problem goes away when the AF Fine Adjustment setting is set to -8 when indoors. It is a pain to change this setting when indoors/outdoors, but at least it works... perhaps folks here know this already ... of course, a firmware update would be preferable.

05-06-2011, 08:07 PM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by stills999 Quote
I've found the problem goes away when the AF Fine Adjustment setting is set to -8 when indoors.
I'm all for the workarounds if they work, but they all limit the functionality of a brand new camera.

Workaround 1 - AF adjustment - If the adjustment is -8 for a lens that is normally spot on, what happens if you have a lens that does actually have some focus problems where you would have to go over -10? Also I'm prone to forget to set it back to normal outside. What do I set it to in mixed lighting conditions?

Workaround 2 - Not using Auto white balance - I actually prefer to use the specific lighting setting over AWB, but as mentioned above and in other posts, lighting isn't always 100 percent one color temperature. Taking pictures at an inside event where there are windows and tungsten lights is an every day situation.

Workaround 3 - Manual focus - This should cure any FF problem, but even with good eyes it is quite hard to manual focus with the small dim viewfinder found in DSLR's (Using the green hexagon light for confirmation won't work because it uses the autofocus sensors), unless you spend extra money for a split screen to aid in focusing. Also forget about actions shots unless you practice a lot.

Don't get me wrong. I like my KR. I just hope they fix the problems it is having so I can concentrate on taking photos rather than adjusting focus settings.

Last edited by ToGo; 05-06-2011 at 08:13 PM.
05-07-2011, 06:03 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by ToGo Quote

Workaround 3 - Manual focus - This should cure any FF problem, but even with good eyes it is quite hard to manual focus with the small dim viewfinder found in DSLR's (Using the green hexagon light for confirmation won't work because it uses the autofocus sensors), unless you spend extra money for a split screen to aid in focusing. Also forget about actions shots unless you practice a lot.

Don't get me wrong. I like my KR. I just hope they fix the problems it is having so I can concentrate on taking photos rather than adjusting focus settings.
I agree with your last statement completely.

As far as manual focus goes, I have similar problems with the viewfinder. However, the green hexagon can be helpful if you practice and test with it ahead of time. I set my lenses up on a tripod with an object a few feet away and then start taking shots using manual focus. I will start turning the focus ring until the hexagon just comes on and take a photo. Then, I'll turn it more until it's sort of "in the middle" of the green hexagon focus range and take another photo. Then, I'll turn it until the green hexagon just goes off and take a photo. Then, I'll compare the photos. Which one is best?

This gives me a real good idea of where the actual real focus point is and I can still use the green hexagon in tough situations where I just can't see well enough to dial in the manual focus with my eye.

I know it's not the ideal situation but it does work.
05-07-2011, 06:39 AM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by ToGo Quote
I'm all for the workarounds if they work, but they all limit the functionality of a brand new camera.
And if the workarounds didn't exist "we" would complain not having workarounds limit the use of the brand new camera.

You forgot Workaround 4 and 5. Use Live View with AF. Or use Live view/Zoom/manual focus. Pretty darned limited!

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/1485447-post185.html

That's the beauty of talking about the same thing forever. We can all forget and rediscover the same workarounds several times. Good practice for old age...



woof! (that's ok I forgot where I left my k-r) woof!

05-07-2011, 07:39 AM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I must be in a crap mood today because I am going to inject my opinion into this thread. For a little perspective, the wavelength issue (tungsten vs. fluorescent vs. daylight vs. <put favorite light here>) is VERY old news as far as AF goes and is/has been an issue to some extent across brands. So to make it real easy, I will offer you $0.10 on the dollar (based on the current body-only price at B&H or Adorama, whichever is lower) for your defective K-r camera bodies to take the junk off your hands. After all, that is all they are worth if they don't AF properly and as we all know AF is the ONLY valid measure of the value of a camera.


Steve

(BTW...I am serious...first 10 cameras only...you pay shipping and insurance...be sure to include batteries...)

(...does primarily manual focus work and am REALLY looking forward to the great high ISO performance...)
I had a similar situation on the BMW car forum. There was a 5 series that came out and with a faulty transmission that made it very hard to go into 4th gear. BMW refused to really acknowledge the issue. In the forum area of their website, you had allot of people complaining that, for the money and type of car, one would expect 4th gear to work properly so where was the fix? You had a bunch of people saying that they just drove around town and never really went fast enough to use 4th gear, so what was all the fuss? A few said that you shouldn't expect a car to have 5 smooth gears, and if you knew how to drive stick, this shouldn't be an issue.

Then BMW came out and said they had a work around. You could just rev the engine up higher in 3rd gear and pop right into 5th! End of story but the customers were like "What?".

And then as expected, there was someone who said he would buy anyone's BMW at a fraction of the price because you still get that BMW performance, workmanship, handling. After all, that is all they are worth if they don't shift properly and as we all know a transmission is the ONLY valid measure of the value of a car.
05-07-2011, 02:54 PM   #36
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Few differences. BMW is a prestige luxury car, for the BMW you pay a lot of money for the premium brand. Pentax on the other hand is the cheapo budget camera brand, you do not pay a premium for the brand.

Also, I bought my K-R back in Feb for $750... with a faulty AF I would value it as $500. I also bought a D5100 a D3100 for $649 2 months after I got my K-R. I now value it at $800. If you want to take the K-R off my hands I'd be happy to, price as above you pay for shipping and if you want insurance you pay for that too.
05-07-2011, 07:23 PM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by woof Quote
You forgot Workaround 4 and 5. Use Live View with AF. Or use Live view/Zoom/manual focus. Pretty darned limited!
Live view with auto or manual will give you great focus, but it is also great at draining your batteries!

To add 3 more workarounds:

Workaround 6 - Auto focus assist light - When conditions are dark enough for it to go on.

Workaround 7 - Buy a k5 or a K1000 and go back to film -

Workaround 8 - Send it off to be serviced - I send my KR with a few lenses to CRIS at the start of April and it is currently in shipping back to me. I will let everyone know how this one works out.

When I buy a product be it a BMW or a $650 camera I expect it to function as designed without any workarounds.

Last edited by ToGo; 05-07-2011 at 07:55 PM.
05-08-2011, 11:58 PM   #38
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QuoteQuote:
I send my KR with a few lenses to CRIS at the start of April and it is currently in shipping back to me. I will let everyone know how this one works out.
I sent my K-r to be servicedas well . The service company here in Sweden found it strange that my K-r didn't focus correctly even with the "tungsten white balance workaround" so they wanted to have a look at it. They said that they had checked many K-rs regarding this issue and that the workaround always worked for them. So I figure there might be some additional problem with the AF-system in my K-r. We'll see what happens.

05-14-2011, 12:16 AM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by LIJ Quote
I sent my K-r to be servicedas well . The service company here in Sweden found it strange that my K-r didn't focus correctly even with the "tungsten white balance workaround" so they wanted to have a look at it. They said that they had checked many K-rs regarding this issue and that the workaround always worked for them. So I figure there might be some additional problem with the AF-system in my K-r. We'll see what happens.
They've tested mine as well. They said that the WB workaround made AF perfect in their tests but it didn't work for me when I got it back. It's a little strange. Even if it did work though, it's still just a workaround and not a real solution. It would prevent me from choosing the WB i wish in tungsten lighting and I don't know how it'd in mixed light conditions.

I've decided to opt for Workaround 7 - buy a K-5.
05-14-2011, 07:55 AM   #40
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Workaround 7 is actually the best, I also caved in and did it. Although I made sure not to sell my camera as I feel it is unethical to sell a broken item to someone else, so make sure you get a refund first before getting a K-5/K-7/K-x/whatever other camera
05-14-2011, 09:15 AM   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by Verglace Quote
Workaround 7 is actually the best, I also caved in and did it. Although I made sure not to sell my camera as I feel it is unethical to sell a broken item to someone else, so make sure you get a refund first before getting a K-5/K-7/K-x/whatever other camera
My K-r is going back. I'm not selling it to some unknowing second hand buyer. The K-5 should be arriving some time next week.
05-14-2011, 10:25 AM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by chiane Quote
I had a similar situation on the BMW car forum. There was a 5 series that came out and with a faulty transmission that made it very hard to go into 4th gear. BMW refused to really acknowledge the issue. In the forum area of their website, you had allot of people complaining that, for the money and type of car, one would expect 4th gear to work properly so where was the fix? You had a bunch of people saying that they just drove around town and never really went fast enough to use 4th gear, so what was all the fuss? A few said that you shouldn't expect a car to have 5 smooth gears, and if you knew how to drive stick, this shouldn't be an issue.

Then BMW came out and said they had a work around. You could just rev the engine up higher in 3rd gear and pop right into 5th! End of story but the customers were like "What?".

And then as expected, there was someone who said he would buy anyone's BMW at a fraction of the price because you still get that BMW performance, workmanship, handling. After all, that is all they are worth if they don't shift properly and as we all know a transmission is the ONLY valid measure of the value of a car.
Ummmm...some may claim that the K-r is the Corolla of dSLRs, but that is not the pertinent. The BMWs of dSLRs suffer from the same issues. This is a general problem with current AF technology. To complain about it is akin to wanting to use your BMW as a boat. Simply put, it can't do that regardless of quality of workmanship or price.


Steve
05-14-2011, 10:27 AM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by ToGo Quote
When I buy a product be it a BMW or a $650 camera I expect it to function as designed without any workarounds.
I would suggest that your expectations are beyond the design target for the camera.


Steve
05-14-2011, 02:15 PM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I would suggest that your expectations are beyond the design target for the camera.
Sure you give up some expectations buying the middle range camera. Maybe FPS, Auto focus speed, a dimmer viewfinder, or water resistance. But I don't think that focus should be one of them. What good is a camera if it can't do it most basic function which is to take a FOCUSED picture.

Also the KR is a step up from the lower priced KX which doesn't have this problem.
05-14-2011, 07:47 PM   #45
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I have made my peace with this issue. I have been shooting like crazy and love the results. The AF is very fast and in most conditions very accurate.

I have been playing around on my morning walks to the train station, trying to catch small, fast birds in flight. I took a few days of experiments, but I got some (to me) pretty amazing results. The AF locks very quickly and helped me get those BIF shots against tricky backgrounds.

I have lots of beautiful pictures of my kids and their friends in a variety of Indoor artificial lighting and I had bad FF in maybe 0.8% of them.

Paper weight? Doorstop? I don't think so!

If it's not for you, and you can get a refund, by all means do.

The lack of a proper statement about this issue taken together with the K-5 stains, K-x mirror slap and battery problems, leave me questioning Pentax... but every day I use the K-r leaves me enjoying it more and wanting to try my hand at more of the things it enables me to do. This is an awesome camera.

Quite simply: I love it and I would not dream of giving it up. Next year, I may buy something more capable and turn this wonderful machine over to my wife.

I think people who do not suffer from the FF problem should recognize the legitimacy of the complaints of those who do. Those whose experiences of K-r AF failure has made the camera unusable to them should recognize that it is a perfectly good camera for others.

Pentax should acknowledge the problem and release a fix or a full explanation of why a fix is impossible.
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