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02-04-2013, 07:51 PM   #1
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Focus question before I cancel my order

So I "needed" my K-01 before my order was scheduled to ship and I landed on a great deal on a "like new" Amazon deal for a black version with the 40. It is in perfect condition. I can't tell that anyone actually even used it. That said, it might be a good thing because my wife put the kibosh on the yellow version after she found out that was the one on order. Something about a yellow camera really bothered her. Anyway, that isn't a big deal (the "unapproval" of yellow) and I still have my order open. I like the idea of having a brand new camera, but I'm all good with this like new, black version (and keeping my wife happy!).

That leads me to trying to verify all works as should. I think it does, but I have one question on the autofocus. I have it set to spot and when I go to focus, it seems like it almost always goes out of focus (even on something that was just in focus) before coming back into focus. Is this normal? I know I've heard it is slow and hunts. I can't say it is really slow and I find that the hunting is precise when it is done, but I was unsure if the going in and out for every refocus was normal.

02-04-2013, 07:57 PM   #2
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In my experience that is how contrast detect autofocus works.
02-04-2013, 08:11 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by mrbdm99 Quote
So I "needed" my K-01 before my order was scheduled to ship and I landed on a great deal on a "like new" Amazon deal for a black version with the 40. It is in perfect condition. I can't tell that anyone actually even used it. That said, it might be a good thing because my wife put the kibosh on the yellow version after she found out that was the one on order. Something about a yellow camera really bothered her. Anyway, that isn't a big deal (the "unapproval" of yellow) and I still have my order open. I like the idea of having a brand new camera, but I'm all good with this like new, black version (and keeping my wife happy!).

That leads me to trying to verify all works as should. I think it does, but I have one question on the autofocus. I have it set to spot and when I go to focus, it seems like it almost always goes out of focus (even on something that was just in focus) before coming back into focus. Is this normal? I know I've heard it is slow and hunts. I can't say it is really slow and I find that the hunting is precise when it is done, but I was unsure if the going in and out for every refocus was normal.
Yes, this is normal on Pentax cameras, although it is not necessary. The Ricoh GXR doesn't do it, for instance.

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02-04-2013, 08:19 PM   #4
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Congratulations on your new K-01. Yellow is terrific but if the boss says no, enjoy your black K-01. Happy Wife = Happy Life.

02-04-2013, 08:23 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by mrbdm99 Quote
That leads me to trying to verify all works as should. I think it does, but I have one question on the autofocus. I have it set to spot and when I go to focus, it seems like it almost always goes out of focus (even on something that was just in focus) before coming back into focus. Is this normal? I know I've heard it is slow and hunts. I can't say it is really slow and I find that the hunting is precise when it is done, but I was unsure if the going in and out for every refocus was normal.
Mine does it for every shot, even if I'm shooting the exact same thing again. If you're photographing a static object you can focus once and then set it on manual focus if you don't want to waste the time refocusing.
02-04-2013, 08:42 PM   #6
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Make sure you upgrade your K-01 firmware, the newest version focuses faster.
02-04-2013, 09:05 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Yes, this is normal on Pentax cameras, although it is not necessary. The Ricoh GXR doesn't do it, for instance.
Wouldn't they all do that to a tiny extent to determine the point of sharpest contrast? We may just not notice to the naked eye.
What are the chances that Pentax will continue the firmware updates and CDAF improvements if they discontinue the K-01? P.s. Sorry for the thread hijack =)
02-04-2013, 09:26 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Louicio Quote
Wouldn't they all do that to a tiny extent to determine the point of sharpest contrast? We may just not notice to the naked eye.
What are the chances that Pentax will continue the firmware updates and CDAF improvements if they discontinue the K-01? P.s. Sorry for the thread hijack =)
Nope, it didn't move at all unless the image went out of focus. If the camera can remember the last saved contrast value then it would just need to compare the current contrast with the stored value and take no action if it's close enough.


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02-04-2013, 09:45 PM   #9
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Touche, quite clever indeed.
02-04-2013, 10:17 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aegon Quote
Make sure you upgrade your K-01 firmware, the newest version focuses faster.
+1.
the latest two firmware updates did improve substantially AF. Install the latest firmwate and it will include all the previous updates.
02-04-2013, 10:36 PM   #11
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What AF method are you using (Spot, Face Detection, Tracking, etc)? I use center focus point only, and it's pretty quick.

I can't believe that no one asked about this.
02-04-2013, 10:57 PM   #12
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Eeeerr Dan ........thats because he mentions "spot" in the question.
02-05-2013, 07:14 AM   #13
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Thank y'all. Yeah, I was thinking it was the contrast detect auto doing it's thing. It just was a bit different how it seems like it goes in, then out, then right on it. A bit like adjusting the focus on a microscope (or other device, that just came to mind). You make the first turn big and sweeping, generally hitting focus, but then going too far, then forward again, but not as much, probably going a bit over again, then backing it up right on the money.

Again, I don't find it slow, per say, just different. (I am running the latest firmware too, I didn't even try it with 1.00).
02-05-2013, 11:15 AM   #14
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CDAF always begins focussing inward. If the subject happens to be further than the current focus setting, the algorithm has first to determine that the contrast is not getting better but worse, hence determines that it needs to turn back and focus outward toward the subject rather than away from it. Therefore, if you manually reset your focus to Infinity when not taking photos, the AF will always be quicker as it will always focus toward the subject first. [Added comment]: Also, the way it seems to work, the closer to subject focus you are, the more evident the contrast changes will be as the AF moves away/closer to the subject; hence, if the subject is very much out of focus to begin with, the focus determination will also be slower than if the focus was close to optimum to begin with.

Last edited by regor; 02-05-2013 at 11:45 AM. Reason: Typos and clarification
02-05-2013, 11:59 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by regor Quote
CDAF always begins focussing inward. If the subject happens to be further than the current focus setting, the algorithm has first to determine that the contrast is not getting better but worse, hence determines that it needs to turn back and focus outward toward the subject rather than away from it. Therefore, if you manually reset your focus to Infinity when not taking photos, the AF will always be quicker as it will always focus toward the subject first. [Added comment]: Also, the way it seems to work, the closer to subject focus you are, the more evident the contrast changes will be as the AF moves away/closer to the subject; hence, if the subject is very much out of focus to begin with, the focus determination will also be slower than if the focus was close to optimum to begin with.
Gotcha. Makes sense.

Guess I'm going to cancel the yellow. Ordering it over a month ago has me really wanting to see it through, but then I don't feel like sending it back or selling it off.

I just checked my shutter count online and I'm quite happy. 109 shutter count with me purposely taking 99 of those.
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