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02-02-2017, 07:23 PM   #1
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Super curious about the KP's autofocus

Can't wait to hear some real user feedback on this (instead of endless internet speculation by those who haven't used it.) I'm already quite happy with the K3, it'll be interesting to hear how they compare.

02-03-2017, 01:48 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
Can't wait to hear some real user feedback on this (instead of endless internet speculation by those who haven't used it.) I'm already quite happy with the K3, it'll be interesting to hear how they compare.
Me too. And just spotted this at Imaging Resource -
"Perhaps most significantly, Ricoh notes that it has improved its autofocus algorithms such that the Pentax KP should offer noticeably better AF performance and accuracy than past models using the same AF sensor."
Well, I am indeed hopeful for faster lock-on and better tracking for bird photography.

The link: Pentax KP Review: Hands-On Preview
02-03-2017, 03:09 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Andy Fern Quote
improved its autofocus algorithms such that the Pentax KP should offer noticeably better AF performance and accuracy than past models using the same AF sensor
If they have just improved the AF software, but kept the same hardware as previous models like the K-3 ... sounds to me like it's time for a new firmware release for bodies that use the old AF sensor.
02-05-2017, 04:35 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
Does the processor control AF, or is that in some other processor?
As far as I can tell [ie guess] there is no processor chip/CPU dedicated to AF in any Pentax, including the KP. AF logic is processed by the main PRIME imaging sensor, just like video, metering etc is.

Some high-end Canons (eg the 1DxII) and Nikons (eg the D5 and D500) advertise that they run separate CPU's for their AF systems, so if it's AF system becomes more complicated, that certainly may be the future for Pentax.

02-05-2017, 04:54 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
If they have just improved the AF software, but kept the same hardware as previous models like the K-3 ... sounds to me like it's time for a new firmware release for bodies that use the old AF sensor.
As much as I would love to have a Firmware update that improves my K3's AF to the (supposed) KP's level I am not sure Pentax would want to remove one main reason for existing Pentax customers to buy a new body.
02-05-2017, 05:40 AM   #6
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A few of the hands-on first look reviews mentioned they thought the AF was noticeably improved over the K-3ii. We will just have to wait until the production models are shipping and reviewers get a chance to run more definitive tests.
02-05-2017, 02:22 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
that could provide a major explanation for why their cameras lag behind Canikon in AF
Not so much, I think. If you have a simple AF sensor (eg 11 point Canon 6D or Pentax K-50), there will be hardly anything to do for a dedicated AF DSP, so it would be a waste of silicon and battery power to install a dedicated AF DSP. You don't need a dedicated DSP for a toaster, for example, because it's capabilities are limited, as is it's mission.

But once you target the camera to sports shooting pros, and start piling on the inputs and work for the camera's AF (65+ AF points feeding in data, the 100k+ metering sensor feeding data into the AF calculations, face detection working away in PDAF, multiple subject tracking algorithms and options, managing dual-pixel AF in Canon's case, doing continuous AF in video, etc etc) and the need to deliver all of that at 20MP and 10 fps or something, then it makes a lot of sense to off-load that work onto a dedicated chip.

Pentax simply isn't at the point, I believe, where they have a camera that would be able to offer enough work for a dedicated AF data processing chip - yet.
02-08-2017, 05:30 AM - 7 Likes   #8
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I tested KP on a concert yesterday. Not FW1.0 on yet, but i can already notice an improvement from the K-3

Lightning was bad and I'm not allowed to share High Res or RAW before FW is final (will still be a few improvements).

KP with 31mm LTD - 1/250, F/2.0 and ISO3200

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02-08-2017, 04:03 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
Bad lighting is precisely one of the conditions the KP seems to be designed for. Thank you very much!

BTW - do your comments hint that some kind of "processing" is performed on data before it is written to the raw file? I'm not sure why they would otherwise limit your sharing raw files before the firmware is stable.
It will work perfect for street, portrait, travel, holliday etc..with less worry about hard conditions

Every RAW file has some kind of processing (not developing) inside the camera.
02-08-2017, 04:07 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
BTW - do your comments hint that some kind of "processing" is performed on data before it is written to the raw file? I'm not sure why they would otherwise limit your sharing raw files before the firmware is stable.
Some of the reviewers on the pre-release K-1 mentioned the same proviso. It must be SOP for Ricoh.
02-08-2017, 05:25 PM   #11
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Rock on, thanks so much for the update!

QuoteOriginally posted by kenspo Quote
I tested KP on a concert yesterday. Not FW1.0 on yet, but i can already notice an improvement from the K-3

Lightning was bad and I'm not allowed to share High Res or RAW before FW is final (will still be a few improvements).

KP with 31mm LTD - 1/250, F/2.0 and ISO3200
02-08-2017, 10:17 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
I'm not sure why they would otherwise limit your sharing raw files before the firmware is stable.
Every camera maker does that before the official release of v1.0 of their camera/lens/flash etc firmware. Even to the point sometimes of taping over the SD card slot on cameras they are previewing at trade shows or supplying to reviewers.
02-09-2017, 01:42 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
Rock on, thanks so much for the update!
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02-09-2017, 06:02 AM   #14
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To quote PFs hands-on review of the KP re: autofocus:

QuoteQuote:
Autofocus is a sensitive subject for many Pentaxians, who often feel like it's a step behind the competition in terms of speed. Ricoh representatives have told us that the KP's autofocus module (the same SAFOX 11 hardware as in the K-3) has received significant software tweaks for continuous shooting performance. They said the tracking performance is especially good when paired with the 55-300mm PLM lens (which sounds about right- this is hands-down Pentax's fastest-focusing lens), and continued to show us some excellent sample action photos from earlier that day.
02-10-2017, 05:10 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by kenspo Quote
I tested KP on a concert yesterday. Not FW1.0 on yet, but i can already notice an improvement from the K-3

Lightning was bad and I'm not allowed to share High Res or RAW before FW is final (will still be a few improvements).

KP with 31mm LTD - 1/250, F/2.0 and ISO3200
Nice capture Kenspro. I shoot Jazz Bands quite frequently with the K3II. It will be interesting to see how it compares with the KP. I find the focus of the K3II quite acceptable. Lighting at our venue has been recently improved and often I can shoot at 800ISO but if I am shooting the crowds I am into 6400 territory.
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