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10-20-2018, 03:54 AM - 1 Like   #31
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Chatting with a fellow Pentaxian about our K-1 and we both agreed there was far too many unnecessary buttons if you shoot in Raw. Funny thing is though we had totally different ideas about which were the unnecessary ones. That is the problem the manufacturers face if they want to sell a decent load of cameras.

10-20-2018, 09:23 AM   #32
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Re: Would you agree that cameras have become extremely complicated?
Absolutely not. Modern cameras have many more features which users may choose to use or not. But, IMO, using the basic features like auto focus, metering through the lens, thumb and finger wheel adjustment of aperture/speed/iso while peering through the viewfinder is less complicated than manual film days.

I was recently at dinner with someone that went on and on, complaining that he was given too much food on his plate, faulting the restaurant. I pointed out that there was no law compelling him to eat it all. Likewise, there is no rule that says we need to learn and use all the features of our cameras.

Re: I know friends and families who were and are really good photographers with film cameras but just never felt confident with digital cameras.
It may simply be that all the talk of features, etc has given folks the wrong impression that there is something too complicated about digital cameras. Perhaps you can educate them about the fact that many can be used as simply as their beloved film cameras. I can't speak for all models, but I know that the K10D and KP can be used this way.

Re: Do you think there is a market for a simpler camera? with less controls?
Probably not, since the additional features are spurred by market demands. If there was a profitable market, companies would have kept older, less capable models with fewer controls, in their lineup.

QuoteOriginally posted by Samwise.Gamgee Quote
Would you agree that cameras have become extremely complicated? I'm an engineer and developer myself but even I get confused with all the new options, controls and menus

I know friends and families who were and are really good photographers with film cameras but just never felt confident with digital cameras.

Do you think there is a market for a simpler camera? with less controls? let's say a digital version of LX?
10-20-2018, 03:43 PM   #33
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The Df flopped because it was the same price as a D3 (or whatever model) and while it could meter with all the old lenses you had to set the aperture on the lens and then the same aperture on the body. No video was Nikon's idea of trying to appeal to true photographers and that didn't help. There was an AF film SLR that had a reversible mode dial (probably Canon), one side was 'picture' modes, the other was P, M, Av, TV etc. the user would decide which they wanted. The real confusion may be all the digital settings and options - if these were hidden from the menu by default and switched on when setting raw shooting, it would help.

I really like Leica's idea of a pared down but solid body with simple, tactile controls for aperture, shutter & ISO. I appreciate this costs more, but it's basic mechanicals and nothing more difficult than the MZ-5n shutter dial (but is does prevent 'double dial Hyper modes). This is one reason why the Leica costs so much - limited sales to their wealthy fans (and they are wealthy given the number of S2s they've sold!). Leica have an advantage as their M series don't need to compromise the viewfinder for LiveView and still deliver their traditional user interface - they were always mirrorless.

Many on this forum have wanted a digital LX for ages but how many would buy one for K-1ii money (or more) - I suspect a lot, but would enough buy it (I doubt it). It would need an non-crippled mount, probably lose IBIS/Dust removal/Pixel shift/AA simulation, lose Hyper modes and need a range of lenses with aperture rings.
10-20-2018, 04:01 PM - 3 Likes   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sapper Quote
I don't mind complex, my problem at my age is remembering so I need to carry the camera's manual with me just in case.
Me, too! I loaded the PDF of the manual into iBooks on the iPhone & iPad.

10-20-2018, 06:56 PM   #35
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It shouldn't be rocket science to allow a version of the manual to be stored on the SD card and displayed on the screen, or some form of context sensitive help within the menus.

Back in the day, the SF7 (SF10) was advertised as having a built-in photography teacher with the CENTIC LCD panel, it being so useful you'd always understand how the camera worked:

Last edited by johnha; 10-20-2018 at 06:58 PM. Reason: Youtube link added
10-20-2018, 08:18 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
Chatting with a fellow Pentaxian about our K-1 and we both agreed there was far too many unnecessary buttons if you shoot in Raw. Funny thing is though we had totally different ideas about which were the unnecessary ones. That is the problem the manufacturers face if they want to sell a decent load of cameras.
I don't have a K-1, but my K-3 is still plenty complicated. Still, though, I treat my camera pretty much the same as my early 80s film SLRs.

Here are the buttons/switches that I use on a regular basis when shooting with "A" contact lenses:
  • Av or M mode
  • Front/Rear e-dial
  • EC button
  • 4-way controller --> drive mode --> 2s timer
  • Shutter button for AF hold
Less frequently, but useful:
  • ISO button
  • Info --> SR on/off
  • LV
  • OK
  • 4-way controller --> drive mode --> bracket
  • 4-way controller --> drive mode --> self-timer
  • 4-way controller --> drive mode --> continuous
  • 4-way controller --> drive mode --> IR remote

Switching to my 1982 Ricoh XR7 with classic K-mount:
  • Auto or shutter speed on control dial
  • Aperture ring
  • Self-timer
  • AE lock (usually used in conjunction with gray card)
  • Mechanical cable release
Less frequently:
  • EC
  • Film speed
  • Green button
The two lists are remarkably similar from a functional perspective. In short, I approach my K-3 as an aperture-priority automated SLR with metered manual.

For completeness, here are the buttons I seldom use for shooting with my K-3:
  • AF back-button (might change some day)
  • AF Mode
  • RAW/Fx (probably should program it for something useful
  • User modes
  • AE Lock (position is poor for my hands)...use M mode instead
  • Meter mode
  • AF point selector
  • Info (other than SR on/off)
  • 4-way controller:
    • Flash settings
    • WB settings
    • Custom image settings
    • Drive mode MLU (poor implementation), multi-exposure, interval, interval composite

Yes, I would definitely be interested in a sparse control layout.


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10-20-2018, 09:52 PM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
For completeness, here are the buttons I seldom use for shooting with my K-3:
AF back-button (might change some day)
AF Mode
RAW/Fx (probably should program it for something useful
User modes
AE Lock (position is poor for my hands)...use M mode instead
Meter mode
AF point selector
Info (other than SR on/off)
4-way controller:
Flash settings
WB settings
Custom image settings
Drive mode MLU (poor implementation), multi-exposure, interval, interval composite

Yes, I would definitely be interested in a sparse control layout.
Those 4 way buttons are shockers. They serve little purpose for Raw operation but are forever getting bumped with the palm of my hand when I am down,twisted in an odd position , doing a macro
10-21-2018, 02:51 AM - 1 Like   #38
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I think the thing is that a modern camera is usable in a very simple fashion. You can set it to green mode or program mode and just snap away. If you want the full LX experience, you can turn off auto focus. Personally, I think it is easier to control aperture from the camera body than from the aperture ring, but I guess tastes vary there. The thing is that most people who buy an SLR want something they can grow with. This means having a multiplicity of features beneath the surface "just in case" they are needed some day.

As far as the buttons go, I far prefer having buttons to having to menu dive for features. I looked at Steve's list and I use User modes quite a bit -- have one set for astro photography, one for pixel shift, one for multiple exposure, and so on. Lets me do something and then change back to Av mode without leaving it in a weird drive mode for the next time my wife picks up the camera. I do use the AF mode a fair amount and have switched meter mode at times too. I definitely need access to drive mode regularly. The other buttons he mentions I don't use so much.

Cameras really haven't changed that much over the years. But I'm not sure that simple sells. In fact, I think professionals like cameras with lots of features and people who are learning tend to buy based on lists on snapsort and places like that too. Leave off live view or video and your sales will drop, even if few users actually use those functions once they buy the camera.

10-21-2018, 05:25 AM - 1 Like   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Samwise.Gamgee Quote
A simpler camera
Thought that what was what the P&S market was all about.
10-21-2018, 06:37 AM - 1 Like   #40
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There's always the option of putting bit of superglue on all those pesky extra buttons and dials!
10-21-2018, 06:55 AM - 1 Like   #41
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You'll never get two people to agree on what controls are important and should be included in a simplified camera.

I have longed for more built-in button customization, including complete re-mappings and selective disabling (less permanent than superglue & a black marker). Add in menu customization (especially hiding things you have no interest in accessing), and you could make your camera as simple as you want. Make these custom layout profiles shareable between users and programmed via a computer software interface. It's about time 'user modes' leveled up.
10-21-2018, 07:02 AM - 1 Like   #42
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Personally, I like the configurability of my Pentax cameras, though I rarely change most of the settings once I’ve set up the USER Modes. Admittedly, I read manuals cover to cover. I’ve had a dozen years of experience with the core Pentax interface to draw on and I can set up a new camera from memory with one trip through the Menu tabs. Much of the time I shoot in Program because I’m just making snapshots of my grandchildren with an expensive camera and zoom lens, but I spend plenty of time shooting with care, where I want to control the camera rather than letting the camera control me.

I sure would like a simpler car though. For heaven’s sake - quit telling me to check my tire pressure!!

Last edited by monochrome; 10-21-2018 at 07:13 AM.
10-21-2018, 09:17 AM - 1 Like   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Personally, I like the configurability of my Pentax cameras, though I rarely change most of the settings once I’ve set up the USER Modes.
The User modes are something that I very much like the idea of, but for some reason, almost never use. Go figure...

I guess the key is that most of my shooting varies by only one or two settings from situation to situation.


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10-22-2018, 05:02 AM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
I sure would like a simpler car though. For heaven’s sake - quit telling me to check my tire pressure!!
Tire pressure monitors typically don't trip the alarm until you're down ~25% or so. If it's constantly going off (and the system isn't faulty) you might have a problem that could be dangerous.
10-22-2018, 06:14 AM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by ThorSanchez Quote
Tire pressure monitors typically don't trip the alarm until you're down ~25% or so. If it's constantly going off (and the system isn't faulty) you might have a problem that could be dangerous.
They’re 32psi tires. If the variance between any of the 4 tires exceeds 1 psi the system alerts and direct to check. Mini says this is normal.
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