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09-24-2015, 10:54 PM   #1
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GPS Calibrations problems K3II

Hi All,

I own a K3II and for the first time I tired to calibrate the GPS. On each attempt I get an error message: “ The operation could not be completed correctly.” Per the instructions I changed the camera direction and attempted this five different times. I couldn’t get it to calibrate. I went into the Camera 2 menu (GPS), selected Calibration and rotated the camera per the instruction displayed on the LED screen. I followed the instructions on page 63 of the instruction manual. Has anyone else had any issues calibrating their K3II? Is there something that I’m overlooking? Any comments will be greatly appreciated. BTW, the camera is in the set to the “B” mode while calibrating.

09-24-2015, 11:40 PM   #2
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One complete revolution about each axis should do it. Is what what you were trying?

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09-25-2015, 12:12 AM   #3
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You'll need to be outdoors and clear of surrounding structure. The further away from obstacles that can block GPS signals, the quicker the calibration will work. I've had trouble in the back yard, and was able to fix it by moving a few metres away from my house. I performed one on a hilltop outside of town once and it was lightning fast.

To rule this out, stand in the middle of an open area and see how you go. If it still won't work and you're following the directions you've probably got a fault.
09-25-2015, 07:37 AM   #4
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A couple of items....
  • You do not need to be in the Bulb mode to calibrate. You need to be in Bulb mode to do AstroTracking.
  • In addition to being outside, you need to be away from large metal objects - cars and trucks. About 10 feet away, I have found is more than sufficient.



09-25-2015, 10:00 AM   #5
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Yes I have had this problem -- not with regular calibration, but only with the "advanced calibration" (or whatever it's called) that shows up when the AstroTracer is activated.

I had to run through the calibration routine 4-5 times before it finally accepted it. And each time I rotated the camera around all three axes multiple times. I was out in the open, in an empty parking lot. This is the only time I have used the AstroTracer, so I don't know if it will be like this every time.
09-25-2015, 11:47 AM   #6
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Check this out...

Calibration | GPS UNIT O-GPS1 | RICOH IMAGING
09-25-2015, 06:18 PM   #7
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I had no trouble. Like other's have said. As long as your outside in a clear area so at least three satellites can get a fix on the camera. You should be fine.
09-26-2015, 04:57 AM - 1 Like   #8
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Morning folks,

Let's go back to the basics here for a minute. I have a K5IIs and the O-GPS1 external unit which is a bit different than the K3II implementation, but they essentially work the in same way. There are TWO types of calibration and they MUST be done serially - one after the other. Let me explain.
  • When you turn on or enable the GPS functionality (however you do it - K3II or through the O-GPS1), the GPS functionality goes out and locks on the signals from the GPS satellites. So, you really need to be outside. If you are indoors, the signals will be at best degraded and things will not go so well. Now, it tries to determine its current location. If the unit has been turned off for a long time (weeks/months), the internal clock has drifted and does not have the same EXACT time as the satellites (which each have very accurate Atomic Clocks). The satellite information is stale and will need to be required from the satellites. This takes a minute or so. If say you used GPS in the morning, got on a plane and flew a very long distance (cross country, across an ocean, etc.), landed and tried the GPS, it will be confused - since it will be assuming that you are in the same location as in the morning. It will need to get a fair amount of satellite data in order to find that you have moved. This can take up to several months (say the GPS was used several months ago in Japan and you are now in the US). Essentially, determining your current location and time. You can determine if this has been successful by looking at the GPS navigation page - and seeing if it has the time and location, along with the compass direction that the camera is pointing. If it has all of this, you are good to go to the next step.
  • Once the GPS system has its current location and time, is synced up with the satellites, then you can do the CALIBRATION step. If you are trying to do this calibration while the GPS system is in the process of determining its current location, the Calibration is going to fail. See the above discussion. The Calibration step essentially ties the movement of the camera to the compass and the GPS unit. As you rotate the camera around each of the axis, it is watching the movement of the compass and GPS so that it will be able to understand how to move the sensor for your particular location and how the camera is pointed to the stars. So, if you are standing next to a large piece of metal - your car or truck, the compass may point to it - and become confused. Step about 10 feet away and try it again. Once the GPS understands its location and how the compass is slewing as things move around it, Calibration is finished and successful - you are ready to track and take pictures of the stars.

I believe that you will find that once you have synced up the GPS unit with the satellites, turned it off/disabled it and then a while later tuned it on again for use - you will find that its good to use very quickly - almost instantaneously. It is when you introduce a large change in something (location or time), where it's going to take a while to figure it out and get things setup correctly.



09-27-2015, 12:52 AM   #9
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Everyone,

Thanks for your response!!! Yesterday, (Friday) I spent 10 hours in the B&W lab developing and didn't feel like going out to try to calibrate (cal) the camera. However, today was a totally different story. I went to a large open field to do the cal. I moved the K3II on the pitch, roll and yaw axis, I'd say about 230 degrees. The K3II didn't cal. I tried it one more time and BINGO, it calibrated. I took some images of the moon to get some exposure times in preparation for the blood moon Sunday night. The K3II executed in the astro-tracking mode without any issues. I appreciate everyone taking the time and helping. Good forum.
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Last edited by Scooterpilot; 09-27-2015 at 12:59 AM.
09-27-2015, 12:31 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Scooterpilot Quote
Everyone,

Thanks for your response!!! Yesterday, (Friday) I spent 10 hours in the B&W lab developing and didn't feel like going out to try to calibrate (cal) the camera. However, today was a totally different story. I went to a large open field to do the cal. I moved the K3II on the pitch, roll and yaw axis, I'd say about 230 degrees. The K3II didn't cal. I tried it one more time and BINGO, it calibrated. I took some images of the moon to get some exposure times in preparation for the blood moon Sunday night. The K3II executed in the astro-tracking mode without any issues. I appreciate everyone taking the time and helping. Good forum.
I may missunderstand what you write but if not; The tracking tracks the movement of earth in relation to the stars, not the moon.
09-28-2015, 05:50 PM   #11
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I too have problems with the precise calibration. In fact I can't even manage to get it done once. I tried in the middle of the mountains, in my garden, moved away from everything suspicious but still can't manage to get it working. May I have gotten a faulty GPS? Coords & compass work great, so I think it's just that I'm missing something here
09-29-2015, 02:19 PM   #12
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The calibration steps are there to calibrate the gps unit for direction and vertical angle. You can still get an accurate lat and long without doing a calibration but you need the coarse calibration for your bearings and the precise calibration for astrotracking.
02-09-2016, 09:52 AM   #13
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I am also having a hard time doing the precise calibration.
I went to an open field, it might have 40 by 40 meters square. I guess is open enough. No large buildings nearby just small houses.
The calibration runs perfectly smooth. However the precise calibration never succeeds.
I really refuse to believe that the camera has a fault. It would be great if the camera could tell which axis calibration failed or something like that.
So one could try to improve on it or i dont know some more useful message than just "failed".
Maybe even they could create a wizard that calibrates each axis independently and that displays some kind of graphical hint related to the movement.
Having this in a bios update would be nice. Looks like Pentax left the K3II in oblivion, there is not even a video regarding precise calibration just an old one about the external gps calibration.
K3II is an incredible camera, it deserves more attention.
Today i will go to an open field outside the city and try precise calibration again by 50th time.
02-09-2016, 04:58 PM   #14
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Today i went to a field, far away from the city. No structures or houses in 200meters around.
All the attempts to do the precise calibration failed, I tried like 20 times.
In contrast each single time i did the regular calibration succeeded at once.
I still refuse to believe this is a hardware issue, maybe is more related to firmware, and im not in a region affected by volcanoes or nothing like that, not even mountains.
Still ASTROTRACER seems to work, maybe is not working as accurate as it could be?
I'm a bit pissed off about this, is a great feature.
If someone has an advice please let me know.


thanks you!

ps: I sent an incident report through that web form available at pentax web, to my surprise, K3II was not even listed between the products just the K3...

Last edited by polaco; 02-09-2016 at 05:37 PM.
02-10-2016, 05:06 AM   #15
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You have to do all axis when doing the calibration, look at the video. I recommend moving it more than he is showing in the video, a little more than 180 degrees in every turn and turn around the axis of the GPS. And if it does not take the first round, keep going from the first movement again.
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