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04-30-2016, 11:05 AM - 1 Like   #1
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Can anyone with a K-1 give me a review of the AF?

Hi! I'm pretty excited about the K-1, but one area where Pentax has been only adequate vs the competition is in AF. They make very accurate AF, but it's not really fast and the point spread is weird sometimes. I'd say my 645z keeps up with the old 5D Mark II, with a few extra points for low light accuracy. But my DSLR is the D750, which aside from the D5 probably has the best AF of any FF DSLR. How does the K-1 measure up? I shoot weddings so I need a camera to track slow moving subjects reasonably well, and lock focus at a dark reception reasonably quickly, ESPECIALLY with fast lenses. As an example, I had to upgrade to the D750 from the Df because the Df simply could not focus the 58mm 1.4G wide open, it would consistently miss. The D750 nails it every time, it's remarkable. But I'd switch to the K-1 in an instant if it offered even 75% of that performance.

04-30-2016, 11:42 AM - 1 Like   #2
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I don't have the K-1, and I do have a K3. Having done a lot to characterize the AF of this camera, I came to the conclusion that when I have missed focused shots it is because I did not use the AF modes properly. So, my answer to you is: if you are good technically, the K-1 should deliver 100% of what the D750 does. But if you shot like a virgin, you need a D750 level of automation to cope with you. I tried a D750, I did not have to read the manual, I pressed the button and it worked, although it felt like a disposable camera. I told the sales man, "it feels like a disposable camera at $2400", he replied "yes, nowadays that's what cameras are". So, I kept my Pentax camera.
04-30-2016, 11:49 AM - 2 Likes   #3
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Hi. Do not know about the comparative speed re canon / nikon....the K-1 is substantially faster than the K-3 and more accurate. Locks in rapidly with a flash of red in the viewfinder and a reassuring solid sound from the body. Feels to me a little like the nikon I played with last year (but cannot remember which model). My 31mm 1.8 quickly locked on. Focus peek is better on the live view too (overall the screen is a definite improvement). Couple this with the movable screen (which I forgot about for the first twenty shots and was lying on the floor as usual to see the screen) and the whole experience is better.

My first impression:
- feels more professional in overall use
- Better screen and graphics and menus
- smaller LCD on the top was a surprise - although it is functional enough
- some of the buttons have moved (like the play button to see previous shot) which I will have to get used to
- sounds and feels more solid than the K-3 (which was good anyway)
- battery went down to ⅔ quite quickly...but then did have wifi and GPS on
- wifi via iphone is cool
- easy to use the pixel shift thing with the user function buttons
- not tried many of the other features (skin enhance, clarity etc)
- files are pretty big (mostly 55+Mb) so slow photoshop down

Overall ace...just me that needs to get better now!

purple
04-30-2016, 11:50 AM   #4
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Id love to know this too.

Im currently using a K3 and was thinking of moving to the Nikon 7200 as im not happy with the K3's performance.

04-30-2016, 03:02 PM - 1 Like   #5
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@richardmills,

Can you let us know what your performance issues are? I'm sure that the knowledgeable folks here can assist in pointing you in the right direction, whatever it is. If it's autofocus, then have you got it set up for best performance? The first post in this thread (https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/172-pentax-k-3/301750-japanese-blogger-te...provement.html) identifies what some consider to be optimal settings for the K-3/K-3II. The K-3 offered an improvement over the K-5 series, and while the K-3II is improved again, the original K-3 still offers pretty good AF, but needs to be set up appropriately to get the best out of it.
04-30-2016, 03:06 PM   #6
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IMO, fast and accurate AF is very very important in today's digital camera..I am using K-01 and Sony A7 and I am not fully satisfied with either one in terms of the AF speed and accuracy. I'm in the market for a new camera system and interested in K-1 but really wanted to know how its AF compares (focus tracking, live view AF) with newer DSLR/ mirrorless such as D500, a6300, A7R II etc.
04-30-2016, 11:37 PM - 4 Likes   #7
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If some users are able to track birds among trees or motor sports @ 100mph and get sharp images with a K5 and K3, then the question is why other users get out of focus images on a static subject. Sorry.
05-01-2016, 12:24 AM - 2 Likes   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
If some users are able to track birds among trees or motor sports @ 100mph and get sharp images with a K5 and K3, then the question is why other users get out of focus images on a static subject. Sorry.
Because it's also about hit rate and predictably. I currently have a D800e, xT1, and k30 and sold the k3 because the autofocus just isn't as confident. Go compare bird photos in the various forums and see the percentage of BIF vs static bird photos. Maybe that'll give you an idea of the autofocus performance of each system.

05-01-2016, 12:49 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by leeak Quote
. Go compare bird photos in the various forums and see the percentage of BIF vs static bird photos.
Not sure what's supposed to be the result of that. Check the BiF and K-3 in Sports threads here if you like.

There was a poster a couple of weeks ago who IIRC used a D800 or 810 with a Sigma 150-600 one afternoon to take shots of small birds and had a 50% focus rate. I think he shrugged his shoulders a bit at the reputation. ☺



05-01-2016, 01:16 AM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by leeak Quote
Because it's also about hit rate and predictably. I currently have a D800e, xT1, and k30 and sold the k3 because the autofocus just isn't as confident. Go compare bird photos in the various forums and see the percentage of BIF vs static bird photos. Maybe that'll give you an idea of the autofocus performance of each system.
Yeah, if you make a short cut between market share (=relative number of photos) and AF tracking performance, and compare mirroless AF with phase detect AF of K3, then... I'm afraid that there's no point to argue about AF. The K3 AF trounce Fuji XT1 AF ANYTIME.
05-01-2016, 01:21 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
Not sure what's supposed to be the result of that. Check the BiF and K-3 in Sports threads here if you like.

There was a poster a couple of weeks ago who IIRC used a D800 or 810 with a Sigma 150-600 one afternoon to take shots of small birds and had a 50% focus rate. I think he shrugged his shoulders a bit at the reputation. ☺
This is the kind of BIF that I don't see much in the Pentax forum:
Nikon D500 BIF Shots: Nikon Pro DX SLR (D500, D300, D200, D100) Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review
Not just tracking parallel to flight but directly towards you. All that with a consumer lenses.
As for your example, the D800 is actually quite a few notch down from Nikon's top performer in terms of autofocus. Off the top of my head, D5/500, D4/D4s, D810, D750 all bests it.

---------- Post added 05-01-2016 at 01:23 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
Yeah, if you make a short cut between market share (=relative number of photos) and AF tracking performance, and compare mirroless AF with phase detect AF of K3, then... I'm afraid that there's no point to argue about AF. The K3 AF trounce Fuji XT1 AF ANYTIME.
I keep the XT1 for a totally different type of shooting. Definitely not for it's autofocus.

Last edited by leeak; 05-01-2016 at 01:30 AM.
05-01-2016, 01:29 AM - 1 Like   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by leeak Quote
This is the kind of BIF that I don't see much in the Pentax forum: Nikon D500 BIF Shots: Nikon Pro DX SLR (D500, D300, D200, D100) Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review Not just tracking parallel to flight but directly towards you. As for your example, the D800 is actually quite a few notch down from Nikon's top performer in terms of autofocus. Off the top of my head, D5/500, D4, D810, D750 all bests it.
Oh yeah. You compare a D500 with a K3. I compare a 5DII with a K3 then; the K3 will win. Please when you infer; be consistent, and compare apple to apple.
But come on; go get yourself a D5 with a 500 f4, and show us your shots (then you'll have spent $10000) to prove than Nikon is better than Pentax for birds flying to you.
05-01-2016, 01:33 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by leeak Quote
This is the kind of BIF that I don't see much in the Pentax forum:
[url=http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3998158]Nikon D500 BIF Shots: Nikon Pro DX SLR (D500, D300, D200, D100)
Feel free to browse:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/26-mini-challenges-games-photo-stories/65884-bif-photography-post660662.html

I don't know how you'd intend to compare the shooters as well as their hardware.



05-01-2016, 01:39 AM   #14
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I, and many others have said this a thousand times - there is no camera made that is perfect for everything - even if you're a Nikon used with a D5 your friends with D810s will be getting better landscape shots in ll probability, or if you have a D810 then you're friends will a D500 will be getting better action shots. You buy what suits your needs and your budget. Pentax need to sell at aggressive price points to regain market share, but that leaves less cash for R&D - choices, choices, choices - we all have to make them
05-01-2016, 01:45 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
Oh yeah. You compare a D500 with a K3. I compare a 5DII with a K3 then; the K3 will win. Please when you infer; be consistent, and compare apple to apple.
But come on; go get yourself a D5 with a 500 f4, and show us your shots (then you'll have spent $10000) to prove than Nikon is better than Pentax for birds flying to you.
I'm not talking about $10k of equipment, but maybe D500 ($2000) and 200-500 ($1400). Beside, I only posted because you made the assertion that the user is at fault when they miss focus. I just want to present another view that some equipment may facilitate capturing moving subjects better.
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