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08-05-2016, 05:44 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by noelpolar Quote
I concur....for what it's worth. Probally enjoy my K's more then the limiteds.
My feeling also.

08-05-2016, 06:16 AM   #32
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Like all other reviews I found this one positive for everything I care about.
QuoteOriginally posted by HopelessTogger Quote
If Pentax can sort the AF-C/tracking and deliver 4K video in the next generation, I'll definitely upgrade from the original K-1.
If those are the only two things they change I would not give up my K-1. Now if they put a little window over the aperture ring so when I am using my K lenses I can see where it is set (and how cool would that be when I hit the light) I might upgrade.
08-05-2016, 06:32 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by SteveD Quote
Like all other reviews I found this one positive for everything I care about.


If those are the only two things they change I would not give up my K-1. Now if they put a little window over the aperture ring so when I am using my K lenses I can see where it is set (and how cool would that be when I hit the light) I might upgrade.
Oh man, wouldn't that be a throwback.

Too bad K2 didn't have a Judas Window - that would make the next model name obvious.
08-05-2016, 06:50 AM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by SteveD Quote
Like all other reviews I found this one positive for everything I care about.


If those are the only two things they change I would not give up my K-1. Now if they put a little window over the aperture ring so when I am using my K lenses I can see where it is set (and how cool would that be when I hit the light) I might upgrade.
It's each to his own really. But I'm finding the K-1 so good for stills the K-1 MkII will need to offer those things I mention (excellent AF-C/tracking and 4K video with good video AF-C), as well as much improved buffer clearance time (not bothered about anything more than 5 fps, it's good enough). Also in-camera automatic focus stacking in RAW (I hate focusing rails for macro) and . . . I struggling now. If they can do that, it'd be the perfect all round stills/video, for me.

Just dropping a few hints for Ricoh.

08-05-2016, 07:19 AM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
Oh, I read, Alex - you said your keeper rate was only 2 out of 11 for lateral movement.

If you really want to compare your skills, now that you're a forum member, I think you should PM @beholder3, who did those shots, or any of our other users who've shot and presented here ducks in flight, aircraft, cars, racing motorbikes, runners or cyclists, and ask whether their keeper rate was 18% or not.
Per my experience with Pentax AF, which has a far above keeper rate than 18% for sports or moving wildlife, I would say that Clackers or the other users that have shot with
Pentax have witnessed that success is not hard to come by. For example, I shot a womens collegiate soccer game last year, and my keeper rate was above 90% easily because I know how to set up and follow a subject handheld. That is why I do not complain about Pentax AF. Improvement is always there to be had for any system of any brand, but I do not find a straying from efficient performance.

I am not trying to be disrespectful, I just do not see the point in downplaying something that can be utilized very easily. It may be discouraging to confuse a new user when incorrect information is portrayed, which is not needed, when that user can otherwise trust the product quality and develop as a photographer.
08-05-2016, 07:36 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by CypherOz Quote
K-1 -- Australian Football... (Fast moving, just same examples, AF.C, back button controlled, "Hold AF Status" OFF, very dull light)

Attachment 320768

Attachment 320769

Attachment 320770
Sorry, but all these three images are faillures. Not sharp at all. Throw them in the bin.
08-05-2016, 08:00 AM   #37
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I have a K-3 and I am getting ready to purchase a K-1 body but I am disheartened by all the negative reviews of the AF-C system. When there is only one review then I can question if the reviewer was at fault. After a second one I start to sense a trend. The third review starts solidifying it. Finally, now after several months of being on the market, every review says AF-C is poor. I can't imagine that every one of these professional reviewers is completely missing how to use AF-C. One of them has got to get it eventually. The forum here is the only counter to all the reviewers. Nobody here will say it's great - just that its a lot better than what is stated in the reviews.

More than 90% of my photography is stationary or in very slow motion. The other 10% is action: fast moving kids during school/sporting/outing events. Although it's the smallest part of my photography it is the most impactful to me and the recipient. Getting an out of focus image of what would be perfectly composed shot breaks my heart. I have upgraded my zoom lenses to faster constant aperture f/2.8 models since the last school year. I'm hoping the shallower depth of field wide open will trigger the AF system more often and more reliably. I wonder if the AF-C performance in the K-1 is a leap forward from the K-3 or just an incremental step.

I am recovering from a financially debilitating divorce but I've managed to save some cash by not running the heater and A/C, not watering the lawn, eating light, etc. It was hard to do this and now that I've done it I want the purchase to mean something significant to me. If I get the K-1 and discover it's not much better than my K-3 then I'm returning it. There's a lot of other toys (and bills) I can spend $1800 on.

Disclaimer : Before anyone gets all defensive about the K-1, please know and understand that I adore Pentax cameras and I am fully vested into the system. I have no desire to leave the ecosystem. All I want is reliable AF-C. Is that too much to ask?
08-05-2016, 08:58 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
I have a K-3 and I am getting ready to purchase a K-1 body but I am disheartened by all the negative reviews of the AF-C system. When there is only one review then I can question if the reviewer was at fault. After a second one I start to sense a trend. The third review starts solidifying it. Finally, now after several months of being on the market, every review says AF-C is poor. I can't imagine that every one of these professional reviewers is completely missing how to use AF-C.

The thread below demonstrates K-1 AF in a seemingly sincere way.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/190-pentax-k-1/325316-pentax-k-1-does-polo-pony-action.html

08-05-2016, 09:19 AM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Not a Number Quote
The same could be said about video on Pentax DSLRs. Although I'm not sure it has never been up to par with the competition.
I seriously wished they would have culled video altogether. That would have been a nice middle-finger to the spoilt gadget-entitlement mentality that has taken hold of mankind. Just a slick, purpose-built, pragmatic stills camera with zero distractions.

About the AF: it works great for me. For my occasional street photography, it's great. I wouldn't want to use it for the Olympics though.
08-05-2016, 09:19 AM   #40
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There's definitely a certain rhythm to Pentax's AF that doesn't seem to jive with the general crowd that are used of Cannikon systems. Thus, keeper rate is higher for those familiar with it while everyone shooting K-1 just for reviews isn't going to get the same results, imo.
08-05-2016, 09:47 AM - 3 Likes   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by empyrean Quote
I wrote the review.
Hi Alex,

thanks for chiming in!

Thanks also for the review. It is always nice if someone gets how well Pentax DSLRs are designed with respect to ergonomics. I like how you took the time to get to know the camera and were able to appreciate its strong points.

I have one question and a few comments:

First, you conclude "AF customization is lacking". Which customisation options are you missing? You will have noticed that there are a number of AF choices one can make including focus vs release priority (independently for AF-S vs AF-C), AF hold, etc. I'm genuinely wondering what else you are looking for. Is it just one more setting for "ignore closer subjects that suddenly pop into the frame"? If so, does this justify the summary "AF customization is lacking"? If there is more you would have liked to see, what is it?

Now my comments:

I think the vast majority of Pentaxians will readily agree that Pentax AF-C is lacking behind the competition. What I don't understand, however, how DPRreview or you essentially come to the conclusion that AF-C on a Pentax is pretty much useless. In your review you write that even lateral movement only provides a 2/11 (=18%) keeper rate. I don't understand that at all, unless you constantly have other objects interrupting the AF acquisition. The K-1's AF-C performance is not at the top of the game, but many examples from other users suggest it is better than 18% keeper rate for a non-challenging scenario.

It is one thing to say "If you are a sports shooter or want optimum AF-C performance for some other reason, stay away from the K-1" and a completely different one to essentially state "Don't even bother with AF-C.". I'll immediately add that to me AF-C performance is not important and I haven't subjected my K-1 to any respective tests. However, I've read other people's responses to findings like DPReview (who only seem to do the "weaving biker"-test when it is time to test a Pentax, rather than a 1D X Mk II) and yours and not all of those responses can be dismissed with the rebuttal "the DOF was huge in this scenario".

Perhaps you explored all options, but I think there might be the chance that some combination of AF configuration settings may have yielded better results for you. Some choices appear to be unintuitive, so for instance "release priority" appears to result in more keepers than "focus-priority" for some users.

BTW, your 8.3% keeper rate for the horse jumping competition sounds absolutely awful, but isn't it true that you could have gotten a lot more in focus shots by applying some simple technique? For instance, a shot with a horse clearing the fence should be dead easy to get by focusing on the fence and then just pressing the shutter release button without even focusing before. That seems like something entirely reasonable to do, AFAIC, as opposed to being a workaround for a non-working AF system. I believe -- I could be wrong though -- that in the right hands, the K-1 could easily be a great wedding camera. More help from the AF system is always welcome, but I just have trouble believing that the K-1, as is, is not fit for weddings.

Regarding the lack of a"dedicated AF point selector": With a simple menu setting, the four-way controller becomes a dedicated AF area selector (it then takes an extra step to use the original functions of the four-way controller). N.B., the four-way controller really is an eight-way controller because the buttons are shaped in a manner that allows one to press two simultaneously in order to achieve diagonal movement. I personally actually prefer buttons for controlling the selection of AF areas over a joystick. I'll admit that I'm not a sports shooter and I could see that for 51 AF areas one may want to use such an input device for very quick adjustments but for the amount of AF areas the K-1 offers, I prefer the discrete action of buttons. In a pinch, I can shift the selected AF-area without even having to check the visual feedback, because I can simply count the clicks or my muscle memory does it automatically.

Finally, you may be more hesitant to dismiss the green button as being dispensable, if you explored its functionality some more. In manual mode, for instance, it can be configured to adjust the aperture or shutter speed. This makes it really easy to make certain choices, get an initial standard exposure by pressing the button, and then continue manually. It supports a "semi-automatic" approach that combines the convenience of automatic modes with the predictability and consistency of manual shooting. A similar example how useful such semi-automatic modes are is the option to perform an "AE-lock" in manual mode. It allows one to fix an exposure setting by having the camera automatically adjust either shutter speed or aperture, depending on which other parameter the user changes. This is great for flash photography, as it will keep the ambient exposure constant while allowing to season the flash contribution to taste (as the flash is only influenced by the aperture setting for shutter speeds that do not exceed the sync-speed).
08-05-2016, 10:03 AM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
I have a K-3 and I am getting ready to purchase a K-1 body but I am disheartened by all the negative reviews of the AF-C system.
And that's exactly the reason why I am disappointed to see DPReview making such a mess out of the K-1's AF test. They made a ton of errors and only after receiving a barrage of complaints, they changed some of their images and some of their language to something that is less obviously wrong. They initially had "Poor AF" as a "Cons" for the K-1 in the summary. It sounds unbelievable but I swear it's true. They had many wording issues and little by little it turned out that they really just wanted to express that the K-1's AF-C performance is not up their with the top performers. I don't think anyone disputes that but what they wrote initially was clearly inadequate.

Your response to all those reports, I think is also the reason why Pentaxians are often seen as "touchy" or fanboys with a belligerent attitude. In my view, such Pentaxians simply respond to what they perceive as unjust criticism because they are aware of the damage it can cause. They simply care enough about the well-being of their favourite camera brand that they publicly object to unjust criticism. A Canikon shooter, in comparison, can be much more relaxed because even if DPReview slams one camera model with unjustifiable arguments, their brand will continue to exist, whereas Pentax is a much more delicate little plant (even with the backing of Ricoh). Had the K-1 been a failure in terms of sales, how long would have Ricoh tried to fight an uphill battle?

QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
I wonder if the AF-C performance in the K-1 is a leap forward from the K-3 or just an incremental step.
I don't have a direct comparison, but I'm rather sure it is just an incremental step. The K-1's AF does not strike me as leaps and bounds better as that of the K-5 II and I understand the K-3 already improves a little on the K-5 II. I'm not really an AF-C user, though, and you should probably listen to other sources.

However, I feel pretty confident in stating that while you shouldn't expect wonders from the K-1 in terms of AF-C, it certainly shouldn't be worse than the K-3's AF-C performance. Never ever have I heard the K-3's AF-C performance criticised in the way the K-1's AF-C performance is criticised. Is it just people's expectations that are so much higher with a $1800 FF body? I don't know, but something does not appear to add up with all these "AF-C performance is catastrophic" reports.
08-05-2016, 11:38 AM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by 6BQ5 Quote
I have a K-3 and I am getting ready to purchase a K-1 body but I am disheartened by all the negative reviews of the AF-C system. When there is only one review then I can question if the reviewer was at fault. After a second one I start to sense a trend. The third review starts solidifying it. Finally, now after several months of being on the market, every review says AF-C is poor. I can't imagine that every one of these professional reviewers is completely missing how to use AF-C. One of them has got to get it eventually. The forum here is the only counter to all the reviewers. Nobody here will say it's great - just that its a lot better than what is stated in the reviews.

More than 90% of my photography is stationary or in very slow motion. The other 10% is action: fast moving kids during school/sporting/outing events. Although it's the smallest part of my photography it is the most impactful to me and the recipient. Getting an out of focus image of what would be perfectly composed shot breaks my heart. I have upgraded my zoom lenses to faster constant aperture f/2.8 models since the last school year. I'm hoping the shallower depth of field wide open will trigger the AF system more often and more reliably. I wonder if the AF-C performance in the K-1 is a leap forward from the K-3 or just an incremental step.

I am recovering from a financially debilitating divorce but I've managed to save some cash by not running the heater and A/C, not watering the lawn, eating light, etc. It was hard to do this and now that I've done it I want the purchase to mean something significant to me. If I get the K-1 and discover it's not much better than my K-3 then I'm returning it. There's a lot of other toys (and bills) I can spend $1800 on.

Disclaimer : Before anyone gets all defensive about the K-1, please know and understand that I adore Pentax cameras and I am fully vested into the system. I have no desire to leave the ecosystem. All I want is reliable AF-C. Is that too much to ask?
I have shot many thousands of pictures of kids playing sports on my K-3. On my K-10,5,7,3, I can't talk keeper rates because I don't keep track and I throw away a lot of frames for reasons other than out of focus. Focus tracking, and focusing in general, has gotten better for each revision, or I have, one of the two, but yes sometimes a series of frames was never in focus, and sometimes somewhere in the middle the focus shifted to something far away.

I have shot a few moving things with my K-1, but not sports yet. I can't say quantatively because I didn't have both my K-3/DA*50-135 and my K-1/DFA70-200 at the same event, but I think using AF-C mode I got focus, and got focus faster, in conditions where I would not have using my K-3.

From my experience so far I think it is safe for me to say that focusing is better (faster, better precision, better in low light) on the K-1 then K-3 and that the K-1 focus tracking is not as good as canikon. I will know in a month or two, but for now my expectation is that the K-1 focus tracking will be at least as good and won't be a leap forward from the K-3.

If for some crazy reason the K-1's focus tracking ability regresses, I will definitely be disappointed, but maybe the K-1's increased high ISO capability will allow me to shot with a little more depth of field so maybe my keeper rate will be better.

For me, the question was is the increased weight of the K-1 system worth moving to full frame. While I do now feel a bit of envy when I see somebody walking around with a nice mirrorless setup, so far the auto focus performance has helped make the answer a big YES. For you, since your sports pictures are the most impactful, you might want to stay cropped frame because you get a higher frame rate and can use smaller lenses, and wait for the next Pentax flagship crop frame model.
08-05-2016, 12:15 PM - 2 Likes   #44
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K-1's tracking AF.C should be characterized as Adequate, as is to be expected of a Generalist camera.

The frustratingly sedate pace of AF.C improvement is likely attributable to Pentax's comparatively small unit sales. They have to earn back the investment in the current AF sensor and algorithms before they can design and order a run of better ones. At the $1,800 price point I don't think Pentax could have put a 51-point FF only sensor in the K-1. They used largely off-the-shelf components from their flagship APSc cameras.
08-05-2016, 02:33 PM   #45
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I think that the K1 is Ricoh/Pentax dipping their toes in the water to see how it feels. For the price of the camera they hit a grand slam home run. (For my European and Australian friends that is a home run with runners on first, second and third base. Four runs score. It is the highest scoring play in baseball. Baseball is more popular in he Orient. )

I think that Ricoh has been very good for Pentax. Yes they are moving too slow for some but they are moving the brand forward. Meanwhile I will continue to use, and learn to use my K1 as I await the next generation.

As to the reviewers comments on continuous auto focus I have no issues with it. These people shoot Nikon or Canon for a living and I honestly think that the results that they are getting has more to do with lack of familiarity with the Pentax system than anything else. I have no doubts that if they worked with the system for a longer period of time, results (keeper rates) would improve. But not to 100%. After all, the camera is a tool and once you learn all the ins and out of the tool, you get better at it. As someone who once did a little blacksmithing, I can attest that a hammer is much more complex in it's use than commonly believed. And all you do with a hammer is pound on things.

Flagship Canon is around $6,000 US
Flagship Nikon is around $6,500 US
Flagship Pentax is $1,799,

The reviewer heaps praise on the quality and value that the K1 provides and rightly so. There is nothing in it's price range that can touch it. But continuous auto focus does lag behind. This is true. But I also know that I don't think that it is worth it to pay another $4,000 to get better CAF. All in all I find this review pretty fair. The K1 is not designed to be a spray and pray camera as required in the world of action photography.
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