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05-21-2015, 07:06 AM   #76
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QuoteOriginally posted by philbaum Quote
What surprised me was the delivery of the K3 II prior to the FF. Since we're speculating here, perhaps they wanted to use the K3 II as a test bed for FF features. Features like onboard gps, astrotracer, pixelshifting, and maybe the new AF. Since the Pentax is likely to be compared with the D750, i have to assume it will have a tiltable screen. 24mp(36mp?) with pixel shifting might sway some customers. I used my K3 with non-built in astrotracer last night and its surprising how well that works.
I thought the K-3II might be have some new tech for testing, but the K-3II is doesn't have much that's new. Same sensor, image processor, & AF and those are the big 3 features.

I still think we see 36MP. With 36MP you can take the AA filter off and take advantage of the SR based AA technology. You don't need an AA filter on a 36MP most of the time. With 24MP you will need to always use the SR based AA filter, or it will have a physical AA filter. Pixel shift will work better on a sensor that doesn't have an AA filter. Most people don't want or need 36MP, but the technology Ricoh has will work better. The camera also needs to be relevant for 3 years and in 3 years 36MP will be be what 24MP is today.

Ricoh needs to offer a compressed RAW option for the 36MP. Uncompressed 36MP files are 70+MB. High volume wedding shooters typically don't like massive files when they are dealing with 1,000+ files

I don't think you will see GPS or the Astrotracer built into the FF. Because of the limitations of pixel shift (tripod, continuous lighting, static subject) I think its one of the technologies that looks good on paper, but in reality it has very limited applications.

I think the Ricoh FF success comes down to the follow features:
1. AF - can it compete?
2. AF - can it compete?
3. AF - can it compete?

It is pretty much a given that the image quality will be excellent with all cameras using Sony sensors. The build quality and ergonomics will be excellent. The deciding factor is going to be autofocus.

05-21-2015, 07:11 AM   #77
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
I thought the K-3II might be have some new tech for testing, but the K-3II is doesn't have much that's new. Same sensor, image processor, & AF and those are the big 3 features.

I still think we see 36MP. With 36MP you can take the AA filter off and take advantage of the SR based AA technology. You don't need an AA filter on a 36MP most of the time. With 24MP you will need to always use the SR based AA filter, or it will have a physical AA filter. Pixel shift will work better on a sensor that doesn't have an AA filter. Most people don't want or need 36MP, but the technology Ricoh has will work better. The camera also needs to be relevant for 3 years and in 3 years 36MP will be be what 24MP is today.

Ricoh needs to offer a compressed RAW option for the 36MP. Uncompressed 36MP files are 70+MB. High volume wedding shooters typically don't like massive files when they are dealing with 1,000+ files

I don't think you will see GPS or the Astrotracer built into the FF. Because of the limitations of pixel shift (tripod, continuous lighting, static subject) I think its one of the technologies that looks good on paper, but in reality it has very limited applications.

I think the Ricoh FF success comes down to the follow features:
1. AF - can it compete?
2. AF - can it compete?
3. AF - can it compete?

It is pretty much a given that the image quality will be excellent with all cameras using Sony sensors. The build quality and ergonomics will be excellent. The deciding factor is going to be autofocus.
I guess you didn't read the part about needing a K-3ii to take advantage or the AF features in the 18-50, 150-450 and 70-200. Definitely some new AF features in the K-3II.

However, just like Canon and Nikon, you're going to need to buy new bodies to use the latest and greatest to their maximum.

Apart from missing that... oh wait, that's number 1,2 and 3, of your points.
05-21-2015, 07:52 AM   #78
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
My point was, the problem with all these "assumptions" is that the information coming from Pentax has been so ambiguous, multiple interpretations were possible. It may be that the Australian reference to November was made in good faith at the time. However, we don't know what's happened between now and then. Anyone who thinks a product launch announced 6 months before the date is written in stone is dreaming in technicolour. It goes without saying, given the time at which the prediction was made, there's ever possibility it could finally arrive a month or two before that, or a month or two later. When Pentax announced the FF had been pushed back back by the 645z, I didn't anticipate at that time that the K3ii would come out before the FF. But obviously altering the plan to push back the FF, also meant a K3ii for APS-c before the FF came out. These things become clear in hindsight, but are not apparent in the moment. Right now I wouldn't even bet on a date. There just isn't enough info from Pentax.
I was responding to Falk's post, I'm not sure we're really disagreeing here. Yes, the information from interviews is vague, even ambiguous - clearly they didn't want to reveal their hand too quickly. But it's consistent, and in full agreement with the official announcement (regarding having the FF by the end of this year).
I'll repeat once again, but for the last time: a delay is not a problem. Saying they didn't even decide while officially promising a release this year, i.e. accusing them of lying and contradicting every bit of information we have, is.

The K-3II role might be to fill the gap between the 2013 K-3 and the next high-end APS-C - which might come no earlier than Photokina (wild guess). Take an existing model, update it slightly, test a thing or two of what they're developing for the FF. It makes sense.

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
It is very likely the AF system for the K3ii was originally developed for the FF. And that the original FF release would have been when the K3II is being released.
That's actually my only worry about the new camera. I don't think this will be the case, who knows, perhaps they'll even include the new AF patent. I can't be sure though.
And the AF system of the K-3II is just a tweaked version of the 2013 K-3's SAFOX XI. It's entirely reasonable that they simply tweaked it for the updated model, while developing a new AF - with proper coverage - for the FF.

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
After all a Pentax rep has said, you need the 70-200, 150-450 or 18-50 to take advantage of all the AF advances at Pentax, I'm sure they meant to release that AF system on the FF system first. At least no one else puts their latest greatest in an APS-c body if they have an FF product.
Of course you do - the older lenses don't allow for such a degree of control.
05-21-2015, 08:31 AM   #79
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Not disagreeing at all, just fleshing out the discussion.

05-21-2015, 08:42 AM   #80
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I guess you didn't read the part about needing a K-3ii to take advantage or the AF features in the 18-50, 150-450 and 70-200. Definitely some new AF features in the K-3II.

However, just like Canon and Nikon, you're going to need to buy new bodies to use the latest and greatest to their maximum.

Apart from missing that... oh wait, that's number 1,2 and 3, of your points.
The K-3II has the same SAFOX11 AF system as the K-3. Any difference is simply firmware. Ricoh will probably release a firmware update for the K-3 to give it the same features, but nothing that you have mentioned has anything to do with the Ricoh FF, but maybe you didn't read that part. I think there is zero chance that the FF has the SAFOX11 AF hardware. What the K-3/K-3II offer in terms of AF is only relevant to the FF in that it serves as something to improve upon.

Just about every review has the K-3 AF trailing the competition. Several reviews have the K-3 AF trailing mirrorless cameras like the Fuji X-T1. I think a lot of that is lens based, but until we get more updated glass with modern AF motors we won't know.

The most important feature of the new Ricoh FF is AF and I think Ricoh knows this. There is no other technology that Ricoh is behind in.
05-21-2015, 08:58 AM   #81
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
The K-3II has the same SAFOX11 AF system as the K-3. Any difference is simply firmware. Ricoh will probably release a firmware update for the K-3 to give it the same features, but nothing that you have mentioned has anything to do with the Ricoh FF, but maybe you didn't read that part. I think there is zero chance that the FF has the SAFOX11 AF hardware. What the K-3/K-3II offer in terms of AF is only relevant to the FF in that it serves as something to improve upon.

Just about every review has the K-3 AF trailing the competition. Several reviews have the K-3 AF trailing mirrorless cameras like the Fuji X-T1. I think a lot of that is lens based, but until we get more updated glass with modern AF motors we won't know.

The most important feature of the new Ricoh FF is AF and I think Ricoh knows this. There is no other technology that Ricoh is behind in.
QuoteQuote:
According to Ricoh, it has developed a brand-new, high-speed autofocus algorithm that better tracks subjects moving towards or away from the camera. No indication is given as to the scope of improvement to expect, but you can be sure we'll be trying this out once we get the camera in-hand!
What do you mean "simply firmware"? That's pretty much splitting hairs. It's a new way of doing things that should alter AF performance. Firmware, hardware, doesn't matter, it's still different and likely to be an improvement. Whether said improvement is backwards compatible is also irrelevant. Stick to the facts. There's are improvements to the AF system coming, which has the potential to improve performance, without inventing anything new. They will be incorporated int he K-3II, and they are very likely to be incorporated in the FF.

So improvements are already underway.

As for the test that have Pentax lagging behind everyone else....I have seen tests which indicate Pentax APS-c lagging behind other manufacturers FF cameras. Not other manufacturers APS-c offerings. Would the same SAFOX 11 system result in better performance if implemented on an FF system? Let's wait and see. The main improvement in Safox 11 was the 27 selective focus points and the implementation of "focus holding" or tracking. If those things can be significantly improved in software, the need for a totally new AF system for the FF would be significantly reduced.

And I have continuously pointed out, for those of us brought up on MF, AF is for wusses in any case.
A gratuitous point made to put the importance of great AF in it's place- nice to have, but not essential, you can take great pictures without it.
05-21-2015, 09:41 AM   #82
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
So improvements are already underway.
When have improvements not been "underway"? its the nature of the game, but that's not the point. They can't simply make incremental improvements in AF and throw it in the FF. It has to match the competition.

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Not other manufacturers APS-c offerings.
You need to read more reviews.
Go to the 3:30 mark. 5:16 mark. "Still doesn't necessarily compete with other brands out there."

Or maybe DPR which wrote:
"Having shot it side-by-side with the Fujifilm X-T1, the K-3 ultimately fell short in comparison. This suggests that, while the K-3 is a potentially very capable camera and a big step forward for Pentax, the availability of lenses means it will rarely match the best of its peers across a broad range of action photography."

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
What do you mean "simply firmware"? That's pretty much splitting hairs.
I mean the K-3II doesn't have a faster processor or more sensitive AF points spread out over a larger area. Unless the initial AF firmware was bloated and inefficient there is not a lot you can do. We see big jumps in firmware updates in 1st generation mirrorless cameras because they are 1st generation systems and needed a lot of work even at the time of release. The improvement we expect to see are due to the lens motors in the new glass.

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
And I have continuously pointed out, for those of us brought up on MF, AF is for wusses in any case.
Spoken like a true Luddite. As someone who started with MF and B&W film, I'm happy to say I love AF just as much as MF.

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
A gratuitous point made to put the importance of great AF in it's place- nice to have, but not essential, you can take great pictures without it.
Yes. you can, but Ricoh's goal is to sell cameras, and in order to achieve that goal they need a competitive AF system. Ricoh is targeting the professional market and they can't do that without significantly improving the AF. If you really want to put AF in its place then realize that Canon has the poorest performing sensors on the market and yet they sell more cameras than anyone. One key reason for that is they have the best AF on the market. Canon doesn't have the best build quality, DR, resolution, glass, or image processing. What they do have is support, best in class AF, and lens selection.

As I said above:
I think the Ricoh FF success comes down to the follow features:
1. AF - can it compete?
2. AF - can it compete?
3. AF - can it compete?

The company that can put the best AF system on the market is going to take huge chunks of market share.
05-21-2015, 10:12 AM - 3 Likes   #83
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
The company that can put the best AF system on the market is going to take huge chunks of market share.
The Canon 1DX has great AF, but doesn't have huge market share.... but nice try. Other factors will always come into play.

Lsitening to your video as posted, testing the AF at 5:41... "I still think cameras like the D7100, Canon 5Dmk3 and D800 are going to blow this away in that regard. " Well Pop photo actually did the test on one of those cameras, the D7100 and the K-3 is faster in that test so right off the bat I can cite an already exposed error in that video. How much else did they mess up? As for the D750, and D800, you're comparing to FFs dude. They do focus faster.

My point is, anyone can cherry pick features from reviews, Some idiot somewhere can say something stupid on line.. and we have have seen how hard it is to get DPR to change erroneous info, even when they've made a mistake on technical specs. You just wasted 20 minutes of my life. DO something that makes up for it.

Did you really quote this?

"Having shot it side-by-side with the Fujifilm X-T1, the K-3 ultimately fell short in comparison. This suggests that, while the K-3 is a potentially very capable camera and a big step forward for Pentax, the availability of lenses means it will rarely match the best of its peers across a broad range of action photography."

Did he shoot the FUjifilm X-ti and K-3 with the same lens? Is he describing an AF problem or a slow focussing lens problem? Pentax just released two new lenses to take advantage of K-3II and FF AF units... did he test those. Or did he test modern Fuji against older Pentax lenses?

Sometimes I feel like I'm teaching people how to read.

But I do find it amusing that you think I should compare reviews, when I have often been out standing in a parking lot with a view of local wildlife with 5 to 10 other photographers, chewing the fat and sharing observations, and come to the opinion that overall my equipment stacks up quite nicely. And you want me to read more reviews? Dude, I could write my own reviews. I don't really pay much attention to niggling reviews picking at the small stuff.


Last edited by normhead; 07-08-2015 at 08:20 AM.
05-21-2015, 10:22 AM   #84
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
Since the K-3 II AF system is essentially identical to the K-3's, aside from some algorithm improvements, I hope they get more ambitious with the FF. After all, if it is going to be sold as a pro tool, it's AF will face some stiff competition.
asahi man said there are hardware changes behind the 86,000p WB/AF sensor, so there's more than just the algorithm. There's also that intriguing patent that uses a curved mirror to spread AF points, so perhaps there will be another surprise in the FF*.

* Full Disclosure: That's speculation written by a low-information poster.

Last edited by monochrome; 05-21-2015 at 10:40 AM.
05-21-2015, 10:34 AM   #85
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
The company that can put the best AF system on the market is going to take huge chunks of market share.
Well, it depends. The Samsung NX-1 has a pretty amazing AF system, but I can't see Samsung eating Canon or Nikon's DSLR lunch anytime soon.

About Pentax FF, I think improved AF hardware and software is just a logical evolution of what is already there in the K-3, just as the K-3 AF was a logical, progressive evolution of K-5 AF. The question is when will a new generation of SAFOX arrive in a Pentax body, not if.

The upcoming FF would be the natural place to put a new AF system, since it is meant to be a showcase, a flagship, and a strong competitor against some already pretty impressive FF's from other parties.
05-21-2015, 10:49 AM   #86
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
The upcoming FF would be the natural place to put a new AF system, since it is meant to be a showcase, a flagship, and a strong competitor against some already pretty impressive FF's from other parties.
Marketing logic makes this a simple concept to state and accept, but Pentax business strategy in the past has been to 'pay for' R&D by spreading the cost of these developments across more units by using them in multiple formats, leading with the higher volume APSc. I would be surprised to see a complete new technology introduced in such a low unit volume as the FF, especially if it is priced aggressively such as the K-3II is - or is spec'd and priced to compete with the D750. Recovering the cost of a new AF system in the FF will require a true premium offering - and price - in all respects, not necessarily an unlikely strategy but repeatedly dismissed here.

IMH low-information O another iteration of the existing basic architecture is much more likely.
05-21-2015, 11:11 AM   #87
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Pentax business strategy in the past has been to 'pay for' R&D by spreading the cost of these developments across more units by using them in multiple formats,
That's true, and it makes sense to do so. But at some point it may also pay them to start working it the other way - high-end tech in top-tier bodies migrates downwards to lower-tier bodies, thus spreading the costs that way, and making the low-tier bodies even more capable at lower cost

Nikon has been doing this for years - lower-tier bodies like the D750 and then the D7200 etc get tech hand-me downs like the 51 point Multi-CAM 3500II AF system used in higher tier bodies like the D810 and D4.

Migrating important tech from lower-tier bodies upwards into higher tier bodies is an uncommon way to do things in the camera industry.
05-21-2015, 11:15 AM   #88
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On the other hand, by putting the K-3 AF system into the 645Z, Pentax far outstripped the medium format competition, so there was no need for expensive new development. A full-frame DSLR is a different proposition. Might we expect a new AF module with performance to rival Nikon and Canon, which could then later trickle down to lower-end offerings like the K-3 Ii successor and other APS-C DSLRs?

Edit: Written before I read rawr's response to monochrome
05-21-2015, 11:25 AM   #89
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
That's true, and it makes sense to do so. But at some point it may also pay them to start working it the other way - high-end tech in top-tier bodies migrates downwards to lower-tier bodies, thus spreading the costs that way, and making the low-tier bodies even more capable at lower cost

Nikon has been doing this for years - lower-tier bodies like the D750 and then the D7200 etc get tech hand-me downs like the 51 point Multi-CAM 3500II AF system used in higher tier bodies like the D810 and D4.

Migrating important tech from lower-tier bodies upwards into higher tier bodies is an uncommon way to do things in the camera industry.
QuoteOriginally posted by Cynog Ap Brychan Quote
On the other hand, by putting the K-3 AF system into the 645Z, Pentax far outstripped the medium format competition, so there was no need for expensive new development. A full-frame DSLR is a different proposition. Might we expect a new AF module with performance to rival Nikon and Canon, which could then later trickle down to lower-end offerings like the K-3 Ii successor and other APS-C DSLRs?

Edit: Written before I read rawr's response to monochrome
I understand the concepts and I'm always optimistic - but we're writing about Pentax, not Nikon. It would be a welcome change. *



Sometimes (comparative lack of) capital really is a limiting factor.
05-21-2015, 11:27 AM   #90
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I don't think XT-1 is that great with regard to auto focus, at least not with regard to either tracking or, low light situations. Not sure what DP Review was testing, but probably comes down to the lenses they chose on each camera.
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