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07-23-2012, 10:36 PM   #1
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I mustn't understand the Quick-Dial - if I do, Pentax are deliberately being daft

I've had my Q for about 5-6 months now, I think, and have come to be a big fan of it, if for no other reason that it's always with me and has more than decent IQ.

Alas, while I've wrapped my brain around most of its quirks by now, I think, one things leaves me befuddled: the quick-dial.

To me, the Quick-Dial, the idea, would be great: a snapshot of whatever wicked settings one has made in menus, available at the turn of a control. For example, I would like to be able to assign the following to the Quick-Dial:

"Quick-Dial position 1": RAW+, no-flash, ISO 160 bracket 3 +/-2EV, no post-process.

"Quick-Dial position 2": jpeg, auto-flash, auto-ISO, auto-WB ("snapshot mode")

Etc. etc. etc. - in short, what I would really like would be to assign to the Quick-Dial those things which I cannot easily do in post-processing.

Alas, it would appear that that's not possible: the Quick-Dial is only for applying post-processing to a picture .... at least, such is my understanding from having tried hard.

If this is true, then it's immensely frustrating, to say the least: the Quick-Dial is just an utterly useless gimmick.

It could have been an useful control on the camera if all it was was a way of taking a "snapshot" of whatever settings were in use, and making available at the twist of a knob.

As the subject said, I seriously mustn't understand the Quick-Dial. Please tell me that there's a way of making the Quick-Dial actually useful:

That there's a way of making it do what I'm wanting, but that I'm too daft to figure out how on my own?

Or, that what I am wanting will come out in a next version of firmware?

Or, that there's a legitimate use for selecting post-processing pre-exposure on what is not a "uhh, must upload to my InstaFaceTwitter immediately" widget, but a camera with serious potential otherwise?

How're you making sense of / using the Quick-Dial?

07-23-2012, 11:42 PM   #2
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It would be nice to have the Quick Dial work as the User modes on the K-5. But, regardless all the Q's advanced features, there is a need for it to suit the P&S market as well, and that's why Pentax included the Quick Dial (the Mode Dial only having space for the more "advanced" exposure modes).

Personally, I use the Quick Dial to preview what I will be doing in PP. I use the JPG finishing options on my K-5 in the same manner. By this I mean I will *always* shoot RAW, but use the JPG settings to get the in-camera (p)review to look closer to what I intend to do with the picture on my computer. Sometimes I will shoot for a result in colour, sometimes B&W, and I want to be able to check the potential of an image in-camera. On the K-5 this means going into the function menu, on the Q I can have what I need under the Quick Dial. From that point-of-view, the Q's Quick Dial actually saves me time while shooting.

Wim
07-24-2012, 12:29 AM   #3
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Its the dial for the Instagram generation.

I find it to be one of the unique points of this camera.
It allows me to switch between B/W; Film; Cross Process; Bleach Bypass at a whim. (no menu diving like any other camera)
I don't believe that much in shooting RAW with the Q.
RAW is for nit-picking and for best IQ. (I have a G3 and K5 for that)
Q is for shots on a whim, experimentation, getting out of my usual (read... boring) comfort zones.


Too bad it does not allow full customization to allow all filter and processing options mixed up in the dial at one time.
07-24-2012, 03:54 AM   #4
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I used to use it as @pinholecam. But I stopped, because there is a penalty... If you shoot RAW, and assign your "custom image" settings, you are now stuck with those custom image settings if you utilize the quick dial to get them. This is NOT the case if you simply choose a custom image setting from the INFO quick menu.

That is a firmware bug, IMO, but there it is. I Really enjoyed using it to access my "film looks" but since I actually lose functionality doing it this way, I have gone back to using the INFO quick menu.

Making it a bank of user settings, as many manufacturers do on their cameras (my Canon 5d2 had something like that, and so does my Fuji XPRo1) would be even more useful. Users could choose to use for "looks" or specific setting situations, and would appreciate the flexibility. However, unlike the bug I mentioned above, I don't think this would be an easy firmware fix, nor am I hopeful for it. Maybe Q2, if there is one.

07-24-2012, 04:54 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by ndjedinak Quote
I used to use it as @pinholecam. But I stopped, because there is a penalty... If you shoot RAW, and assign your "custom image" settings, you are now stuck with those custom image settings if you utilize the quick dial to get them. This is NOT the case if you simply choose a custom image setting from the INFO quick menu.

That is a firmware bug, IMO, but there it is. I Really enjoyed using it to access my "film looks" but since I actually lose functionality doing it this way, I have gone back to using the INFO quick menu.
Strange. My Q stays in RAW regardless of what setting I choose on the Quick Dial. The Quick Dial only affects the JPG thumbnail that is stored in the RAW file. Granted, on the Q itself I can only see the picture as it was manipulated using the JPG setting, but once I import the picture into my RAW developing software, none of the JPG settings are visible and I have a regular RAW file to work from... Perhaps I misunderstood what you wrote?

QuoteOriginally posted by ndjedinak Quote
Making it a bank of user settings, as many manufacturers do on their cameras (my Canon 5d2 had something like that, and so does my Fuji XPRo1) would be even more useful. Users could choose to use for "looks" or specific setting situations, and would appreciate the flexibility. However, unlike the bug I mentioned above, I don't think this would be an easy firmware fix, nor am I hopeful for it. Maybe Q2, if there is one.
Yes, that's what Pentax achieves in a very flexible manner with it's USER modes on the K-5 (you can even name the settings). You don't have to look at other brands for this... Hence, I don't think it's a question of Pentax not knowing how to do this, but rather of choosing not to implement USER modes on the Q, in order to make it a camera that's an option for P&S photographers as well as more advanced photographers.

Wim
07-24-2012, 05:06 AM   #6
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I find it very useful, I shoot in JPEG only and do not like spending time post-processing, so I got 4 most useful to me image modes very quickly accessible/switchable: single-image HDR (settings tweaked to make it look more natural than default), Gothic with Ominous Clouds (you know what I mean), maximum (brilliant??) colour saturation and bold black-and-white. And I don't do Instagram
07-24-2012, 05:41 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote
Strange. My Q stays in RAW regardless of what setting I choose on the Quick Dial. The Quick Dial only affects the JPG thumbnail that is stored in the RAW file. Granted, on the Q itself I can only see the picture as it was manipulated using the JPG setting, but once I import the picture into my RAW developing software, none of the JPG settings are visible and I have a regular RAW file to work from... Perhaps I misunderstood what you wrote?
No, mine stays in RAW (unless you use picture effects or digital filters, then it will bounce out of RAW)... The hitch for me is that I don't use RAW editing software. I only "develop" RAW in camera if need be. I grew up with film, where I had to make my choices at the point of exposure, so I tend to work that way with digital. For me it is all part of the creative process. So why shoot RAW? Sometimes I make mistakes, or change my mind. I can't change the past with film, but I can with RAW

The "bug" is that the Q's RAW editor will not change Custom Image setting after the fact if you have selected a Custom Image setting with the Quick Dial. If you set it via any other method, the Q will allow you to change any RAW setting you want.

For instance--I usually shoot B&W, so I usually leave the Q in monochrome Custom Image setting. Later, I might decide that I wanted a certain string of shots in color; perhaps I changed my mind about my mood (ha!). The Q makes this so easy by allowing batch edits to RAW files--just click to select the series of shots, then apply any RAW parameter you want. It's like a mini photoshop in the camera body If I chose B&W via the menu or quick menu, I can do this. If I used the Quick Dial.. I'm stuck with B&W.

QuoteQuote:
Yes, that's what Pentax achieves in a very flexible manner with it's USER modes on the K-5 (you can even name the settings). You don't have to look at other brands for this...

Wim
Good point--I'm just not familiar with Pentax, as the Q is my first
07-24-2012, 07:48 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by ndjedinak Quote
No, mine stays in RAW (unless you use picture effects or digital filters, then it will bounce out of RAW)... The hitch for me is that I don't use RAW editing software. I only "develop" RAW in camera if need be. I grew up with film, where I had to make my choices at the point of exposure, so I tend to work that way with digital. For me it is all part of the creative process. So why shoot RAW? Sometimes I make mistakes, or change my mind. I can't change the past with film, but I can with RAW

The "bug" is that the Q's RAW editor will not change Custom Image setting after the fact if you have selected a Custom Image setting with the Quick Dial. If you set it via any other method, the Q will allow you to change any RAW setting you want.

For instance--I usually shoot B&W, so I usually leave the Q in monochrome Custom Image setting. Later, I might decide that I wanted a certain string of shots in color; perhaps I changed my mind about my mood (ha!). The Q makes this so easy by allowing batch edits to RAW files--just click to select the series of shots, then apply any RAW parameter you want. It's like a mini photoshop in the camera body If I chose B&W via the menu or quick menu, I can do this. If I used the Quick Dial.. I'm stuck with B&W.
I see. I noticed that indeed. This never bothered me since I work in RAW on my computer. I would really recommend doing your processing on a computer, and only doing the RAW conversion in-camera when you really need it. I only used this for pictures that I wanted to get onto my website while traveling (not having a computer with appropriate software available to me). For me the advantages are endless, for one this enables me to get images from different cameras (currently Q and K-5) as much aligned as possible. I couldn't do without my Adobe Lightroom.

But I agree, it would indeed be nice that the in-camera RAW converter would allow "resetting" the JPG settings for a RAW image.

Wim

07-24-2012, 09:47 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote
I see. I noticed that indeed. This never bothered me since I work in RAW on my computer. I would really recommend doing your processing on a computer, and only doing the RAW conversion in-camera when you really need it. I only used this for pictures that I wanted to get onto my website while traveling (not having a computer with appropriate software available to me). For me the advantages are endless, for one this enables me to get images from different cameras (currently Q and K-5) as much aligned as possible. I couldn't do without my Adobe Lightroom.

But I agree, it would indeed be nice that the in-camera RAW converter would allow "resetting" the JPG settings for a RAW image.

Wim
Just to be clear, the in-camera RAW editor does allow "resetting" of the JPEG options... Unless they were set with the Quick Dial!

In any case--I don't like editing my images at all on a computer. I've always been a shooter, not a darkroom guy, even when I shot and enlarged film. I'd really recommend to all photographers that they NOT edit images on a computer, and focus on creativity at the time of the shot... But to each their own, and all that.

In any case, the Quick Menu is a bit of a lost opportunity, IMO. In all regards.
07-25-2012, 12:47 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ndjedinak Quote
I'd really recommend to all photographers that they NOT edit images on a computer, and focus on creativity at the time of the shot...
You say this as if the two are mutually exclusive, which they are not. When you enlarged film, you must have made choices about the paper, contrast filters, chemistry, and development times you used.
07-25-2012, 04:52 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by fuent104 Quote
You say this as if the two are mutually exclusive, which they are not. When you enlarged film, you must have made choices about the paper, contrast filters, chemistry, and development times you used.
Of course. Today I make them in camera, instead of later

Really, with film, my development (which I still do today, at home) and printing (which I no longer do at all, I scan when I shoot film) was usually optimized until I was happy with the results for a particular film, and I then used that "recipe" 95% of the time I used that film, and always applied to the whole roll. I was never one to agonize over development and enlarging, exposure by exposure, print by print. I know some made that part of their craft, I just never enjoyed it. Still don't.

In any case, it's not a point I want to belabor... I just wanted to point out that there are some photographers who prefer to work with a different mindset, and a different workflow... It's a choice, and it's really just as valid as any other method
07-26-2012, 02:15 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by ndjedinak Quote
In any case, it's not a point I want to belabor... I just wanted to point out that there are some photographers who prefer to work with a different mindset, and a different workflow... It's a choice, and it's really just as valid as any other method
I agree.
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