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03-12-2012, 07:46 PM   #1
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Disappointing Discovery

Tonight I performed an unscientific test comparing the contrast-detection auto-focus systems between the K5 in Live View and K-01. Much to my surprise (and dismay), the K5 was able to lock focus more consistently than the K-01.

I performed the test in my tungsten-lit living room using the DA 18-55mm WR, DA 55-300mm and DA 35mm Macro. I used center-point AF on the K-01.

My personal opinion is that this camera does not possess a contrast-detection auto-focus system that is significantly improved from the K5. In fact, I was able to create a scenario where it was WORSE than the K5 using three different lenses.

The novelty of this cam is beginning to wear off. I am beginning to question its practicality and value.

03-12-2012, 08:01 PM   #2
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Wow. I don't know what to say, You putting it on Ebay?
03-12-2012, 08:08 PM   #3
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Slightly depressed. Disregarding focus issues image quality is right there with the K5.
03-12-2012, 08:10 PM   #4
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From what I've read, the K-01 has focus issues with longish lenses and macro lenses. Is the performance comparable to the K-5 with the 18-55?

03-12-2012, 08:15 PM   #5
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The 18-55 locks more consistently on my K5 via LV. The K-01 has real trouble in areas where there is little ambient light. The K5 in LV also has difficulty, but manages to lock focus eventually. The K-01 simply gives up.
03-12-2012, 08:16 PM   #6
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Alert the media
03-12-2012, 08:17 PM   #7
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My advice: take a deep breath. Don't worry about artificial tests. Take the K-01 out into the daylight and start shooting.

Pentax wouldn't release a camera with substandard focusing - they have reams of testers doing QC before release. It may be slower than the K-5 - mirrorless uses a different system generally than reflex cameras - it doesn't mean it won't focus. Worry about your pictures and not so much about the technical stuff.
03-12-2012, 08:19 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by krebsy97 Quote
My personal opinion is that this camera does not possess a contrast-detection auto-focus system that is significantly improved from the K5. In fact, I was able to create a scenario where it was WORSE than the K5 using three different lenses.
It does have trouble locking focus at times, but we found it significantly faster than the K-5's CDAF nevertheless. Here are the numbers:
Pentax K-01 Review - Autofocus Performance - PentaxForums.com


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03-12-2012, 08:22 PM   #9
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My raven there was shot handheld & framed via LCD & focused using the half-press method watching the screen until his eyes looked sharp. Bingo!
03-12-2012, 08:22 PM - 2 Likes   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by mervis Quote
Pentax wouldn't release a camera with substandard focusing...
Some would say that Pentax has been guilty of this for years...
03-12-2012, 08:23 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mervis Quote
My advice: take a deep breath. Don't worry about artificial tests. Take the K-01 out into the daylight and start shooting.
Seriously. Just use the dang thing!

I understand that reviewers need to perform lab tests to do their job but the vast majority of us have no freaking clue how to accurately set up a lab test. Take the camera out and use it in real-world conditions to see how it performs.

What's so hard about that?
03-12-2012, 08:23 PM   #12
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I guess that's the risk of buying right when it comes out. I would think that some of the AF issues could be addressed with a firmware update. I don't know if I would wait and see though. If you are disappointed with the camera, surely you are within the return period, right? Worst case scenario if you return it is that it never improves and you haven't spent any money on it. Best case, they improve some stuff and you can buy it again
03-12-2012, 08:42 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by ibkc Quote
Seriously. Just use the dang thing!

I understand that reviewers need to perform lab tests to do their job but the vast majority of us have no freaking clue how to accurately set up a lab test. Take the camera out and use it in real-world conditions to see how it performs.

What's so hard about that?
You perform these tests so you don't get an unpleasant surprise when you are shooting "for real". It's all part of knowing your equipment.
03-12-2012, 08:43 PM   #14
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My concerns regarding this camera's AF began while using the DA 17-70mm outside at a playground in full sunlight. AF with this lens was extremely crude and fussy north of 55mm.

The cam works terrific with both our 40mm lenses.

Adam, I certainly don't dispute your findings regarding CD auto-focus speed between these two cameras. My concern is focus lock.

We have captured about 250 images with this cam so far. We have many, many keepers using the 40mm XS in a variety of lighting conditions.
03-12-2012, 08:48 PM - 1 Like   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by mervis Quote
My advice: take a deep breath. Don't worry about artificial tests. Take the K-01 out into the daylight and start shooting.

Pentax wouldn't release a camera with substandard focusing - they have reams of testers doing QC before release. It may be slower than the K-5 - mirrorless uses a different system generally than reflex cameras - it doesn't mean it won't focus. Worry about your pictures and not so much about the technical stuff.
I dunno, it didn't seem like a controlled, scientific test or anything, just messing around the living room. Surely that's a place where pictures could be taken? If I was just messing around with my camera (I've been known to fire off some shutters and use advance levers for the hell of it) and noticed an annoying thing, I'd be a little disappointed too. I'm holding out hope that the focus issues can be ironed out with an update, but I have the luxury of time right now.
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