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11-06-2019, 02:27 PM - 1 Like   #16
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I learned a few good tips there, you certainly reinvigorated my appreciation of Liveview. Many thanks Bruce.

11-06-2019, 04:21 PM - 1 Like   #17
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could we link this video for everybody to find easily; I am sure this helps lots of people. Very nicely done.
11-06-2019, 04:30 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by HoutHans Quote
Yes, thanks for posting this informative video. Sharing knowledge is a great thing!
QuoteOriginally posted by HippyHippo Quote
I learned a few good tips there, you certainly reinvigorated my appreciation of Liveview. Many thanks Bruce.
QuoteOriginally posted by bwgv001 Quote
could we link this video for everybody to find easily; I am sure this helps lots of people. Very nicely done.
Thanks peeps.

Maybe Adam or someone would like to sticky the thread, I dunno, I'll leave that to the powers at be.
11-06-2019, 05:18 PM   #19
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Thanks for the video.

I'm intrigued by modern AF methods, but honestly I can't get the hang of anything other than just using the single centre point. I'm not even old or anything, but since I started with film and never liked using the cheap digital point and shoots my family had, focus and recomposing is the only method that ever suited me. I suppose the big idea behind mirrorless cameras, combination CF and PD AF, and fancy eye-detect tech is to make the task of automated focusing so accurate and reliable that it becomes the new default, but I just can't get comfortable with the idea of letting a computer pick my AF point for me, or even letting me move the point myself, and then forgetting to move it again for my next shot. I just like the simplicity of knowing the centre of my frame will always house the focus assist, but it's just too bad that AF focus screens make manual focusing harder than it needs to be.

I've been meaning to try Pentax's face detect though, but for some reason I've yet to try portraits using anything but my manual lenses so far.

11-06-2019, 05:42 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by StarTroop Quote
Thanks for the video.

I'm intrigued by modern AF methods, but honestly I can't get the hang of anything other than just using the single centre point. I'm not even old or anything, but since I started with film and never liked using the cheap digital point and shoots my family had, focus and recomposing is the only method that ever suited me. I suppose the big idea behind mirrorless cameras, combination CF and PD AF, and fancy eye-detect tech is to make the task of automated focusing so accurate and reliable that it becomes the new default, but I just can't get comfortable with the idea of letting a computer pick my AF point for me, or even letting me move the point myself, and then forgetting to move it again for my next shot. I just like the simplicity of knowing the centre of my frame will always house the focus assist, but it's just too bad that AF focus screens make manual focusing harder than it needs to be.

I've been meaning to try Pentax's face detect though, but for some reason I've yet to try portraits using anything but my manual lenses so far.
Yeh, Live View has 'tricks' and they can work well, and as I said can be useful when multi tasking with other gear such as holding off camera flash etc. Most of the shots I took at the beer festival for instance, I want to see what's going on, who is coming into the shot and when, having an eye down an OVF is not always best course of action. Options are nice.

The only issue I have is that when people talk about centre point and focus and recompose... they then forget to say 'focus' again. If you're focus, recompose, snap the shot (depending on settings, lens used bla bla) you do run a real risk of the shot being soft. I think for some people that isn't so much a big deal, but for me the process is more like focus, recompose and then focus again. That's what the Live View AF Tracking can be so neat because it is essentially that exact process done quicker. Starts of centre, focus/lock on, recompose and then either take the shot or refocus and take the shot, it's actually superb.

To my knowledge there is only one other camera that kind of behaves like that through the OVF (might be a EVF), which is a hassleblad. It is said to have only one focus mode and its centre point, however once you focus and lock on, when you recompose the camera uses the gyro information so it knows where the centre point was as you recompose and retains that as the focus (a bit like AF.C working as well). If it works well it sounds really great, no more focus, recompose, focus but just focus, recompose and take the shot and always have sharp focus everytime (and via the eye piece rather than back of the screen!). I hope Pentax will keep innovating in similar ways.
11-06-2019, 07:53 PM - 1 Like   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by BruceBanner Quote
Yeh, Live View has 'tricks' and they can work well, and as I said can be useful when multi tasking with other gear such as holding off camera flash etc. Most of the shots I took at the beer festival for instance, I want to see what's going on, who is coming into the shot and when, having an eye down an OVF is not always best course of action. Options are nice.

The only issue I have is that when people talk about centre point and focus and recompose... they then forget to say 'focus' again. If you're focus, recompose, snap the shot (depending on settings, lens used bla bla) you do run a real risk of the shot being soft. I think for some people that isn't so much a big deal, but for me the process is more like focus, recompose and then focus again. That's what the Live View AF Tracking can be so neat because it is essentially that exact process done quicker. Starts of centre, focus/lock on, recompose and then either take the shot or refocus and take the shot, it's actually superb.

To my knowledge there is only one other camera that kind of behaves like that through the OVF (might be a EVF), which is a hassleblad. It is said to have only one focus mode and its centre point, however once you focus and lock on, when you recompose the camera uses the gyro information so it knows where the centre point was as you recompose and retains that as the focus (a bit like AF.C working as well). If it works well it sounds really great, no more focus, recompose, focus but just focus, recompose and take the shot and always have sharp focus everytime (and via the eye piece rather than back of the screen!). I hope Pentax will keep innovating in similar ways.
I fully admit that focus and recomposing has the issue of losing focus with curved fields of focus, but again, since I started with film my standards for a sharp photo are pretty lax. I know this would be completely unacceptable to most hobbiests and professionals, but my reasoning is that if it would appear sharp with some cheap 35mm film blown up to about 5x7, then it's already good enough for me; anything sharper is just a bonus.


I did experiment with AF-C with the expanded tracking area in OVF, and the tracking mode in live view on my KP, but I found that I used them so rarely that it was pointless to even have the option. I actually found myself accidentally moving the focus point, missing some shots, and struggling to find the issue until I noticed I needed to reset to centre, more often than I actually deliberately moved the point. I like my control interfaces, both physical and digital, to be as efficient and functional as possible, so it bugs me when I have prominent sections of the interface dedicated to features I don't want, even more so if the control has two purposes which causes confusion when I need to toggle between the functions. Pentax is pretty good about customisation and quality UX though, which is why I'm happy to leave my camera on the single-point mode, knowing that If for some reason I ever wanted to switch AF mode, I can do so without entering any menus because the AF mode button is out of the way of any important controls. Still, I'm inclined to say I would probably pay slightly more for a DSLR with only manual focus, a split screen, and absolutely no video function (though not Leica prices.)
11-07-2019, 05:56 AM - 1 Like   #22
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Thanks for the video.
I'm using SEL mode with central point but I will try the spot one.
11-07-2019, 06:03 AM - 1 Like   #23
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Thank you for the video! Very good presentation of the various Af modes and settings!

11-07-2019, 08:56 AM - 1 Like   #24
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Thanks for posting this Bruce. I was unaware of the tracking function and for sure I will be using it from now on
11-07-2019, 09:33 AM - 1 Like   #25
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Good video.

I use the 'focus and recompose' technique most of the time (K3-II). I know that it's not accurate, but works for me. I need to explore more options, With the optical viewer, trancking modes doesn't work so well, and automatic mode doesn't focus usually where I want to. So I use normally the central point (more accurate), sometimes I use other focus points. AF-S 99% of the time.

About PDAF... I just can't look at the back LCD to compose etc, but the trancking modes work way better, even though still are a bit slow, and it's easy to lost the focus 'box' if you move the camera too 'fast'. I admit I hadn't tried them much, until now.
11-07-2019, 12:32 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by StarTroop Quote
I fully admit that focus and recomposing has the issue of losing focus with curved fields of focus, but again, since I started with film my standards for a sharp photo are pretty lax. I know this would be completely unacceptable to most hobbiests and professionals, but my reasoning is that if it would appear sharp with some cheap 35mm film blown up to about 5x7, then it's already good enough for me; anything sharper is just a bonus.


I did experiment with AF-C with the expanded tracking area in OVF, and the tracking mode in live view on my KP, but I found that I used them so rarely that it was pointless to even have the option. I actually found myself accidentally moving the focus point, missing some shots, and struggling to find the issue until I noticed I needed to reset to centre, more often than I actually deliberately moved the point. I like my control interfaces, both physical and digital, to be as efficient and functional as possible, so it bugs me when I have prominent sections of the interface dedicated to features I don't want, even more so if the control has two purposes which causes confusion when I need to toggle between the functions. Pentax is pretty good about customisation and quality UX though, which is why I'm happy to leave my camera on the single-point mode, knowing that If for some reason I ever wanted to switch AF mode, I can do so without entering any menus because the AF mode button is out of the way of any important controls. Still, I'm inclined to say I would probably pay slightly more for a DSLR with only manual focus, a split screen, and absolutely no video function (though not Leica prices.)
Focus/recompose can work fine on many stopped down apertures as well, it's typically only an issue on wider open shots, but I agree that there is also some overly strong bias to have nailed absolutely perfect focus of the eyelashes lol, sometimes that kinda critical focus can ruin the mood/moment. Just get the shot done is what I say

You've said a few things here that I brought up in other threads, namely an option to hide certain features or functions so that you're not scrolling through additional menu items unnecessarily, or toggling through AF modes you'll never touch.
I've also mentioned how as much as I appreciate features I don't really feel Pentax diverse enough with their models, they lack a 'back to basics no frills' camera body, something like what you say a MF body only with split screen and no video. If the price was low as well because it omitted a large amount of tech and features I think it would be a serious hit. There is just so much legacy glass users and I think that's a large part of the Pentax market of why we all purchased Pentax. Just give us a camera that utilises those lenses best. I own the KP and K-1, really don't need Focus Peaking twice, Pixelshift twice, etc etc.

QuoteOriginally posted by ben.p Quote
Thanks for the video.
I'm using SEL mode with central point but I will try the spot one.
I made a mistake in the video, it's not 30% more accurate but I think 30% smaller than the SEL spot, so the Spot is just the tiniest of AF points and should hopefully lead to better success.

QuoteOriginally posted by redpit Quote
Thank you for the video! Very good presentation of the various Af modes and settings!
No worries.

QuoteOriginally posted by sergysergy Quote
Thanks for posting this Bruce. I was unaware of the tracking function and for sure I will be using it from now on


QuoteOriginally posted by morenjavi Quote
Good video.

I use the 'focus and recompose' technique most of the time (K3-II). I know that it's not accurate, but works for me. I need to explore more options, With the optical viewer, trancking modes doesn't work so well, and automatic mode doesn't focus usually where I want to. So I use normally the central point (more accurate), sometimes I use other focus points. AF-S 99% of the time.

About PDAF... I just can't look at the back LCD to compose etc, but the trancking modes work way better, even though still are a bit slow, and it's easy to lost the focus 'box' if you move the camera too 'fast'. I admit I hadn't tried them much, until now.
If I do any kind of tracking in the OVF (AF.C stuff), I am pretty much Jpg always. I will exploit the benefits of digital and just be High Continuous Bursting. If I stay in RAW I get frustrated with my camera crapping out after 13-17 shots. Situations I will use AF.C in Jpg might be the aisle of a wedding, first up the flower girl, then next up maid of honour, then finally the bride with her father. I want to capture the best moment/look of each person as they come down the aisle, and shooting RAW is just too crippling. I'd happily sacrifice dynamic range for better buffer. It's during these times that for framing I might not use Spot for AF.C but a single SEL spot off centre somewhere for better framing. It's less accurate but my feeling is that with a gazillion shots grabbed there should be a few that are decent, especially if using Focus Priority on every AF.C aspect.


I sometimes also look through the OVF for framing (removing distractions) and then come out of it for Live View for the shot (Face Detection etc), just depends. You do get used to Live View use, it does take time however, it is not comfortable at first and so I think many stop developing that skill before it gets easier for them, so a little perseverance can help. I've literally done 'no OVF months' to force better habits in this way, as well as 2-3 months of never using AF at all to develop better Manual Focus skills.

I think with AF you have two choices you should head down;

1) Ignore everything I say in this video and stick with Spot and focus>Recompose>(Focus if necessary).

2) Start to explore and practice the other modes, really try and not go back to Focus/Recompose quickly, take a month off from it so that you do develop some comfort with the other focusing options. It's all skill based stuff and like any skill it doesn't get better with by flirting with it occasionally, it takes some discipline and practice. Once you get familiar with the modes you might decide to make some User Modes that are essentially the same but let you quickly change the AF mode/technique, this can be a handy way to toggle quickly (you'll notice in the video when I am changing AF modes at times I can scroll the dial the wrong way and pass the mode I want etc, one flick of the User dial and resetting the aperture or whatever can often be less painful).

I think if you do either option 1 or 2 you become either a Master of one (1) or Master of all (2), if you flirt with different options occasionally you do run the risk of being a bit of a 'jack of all trades' imo.
11-07-2019, 07:27 PM   #27
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Thank you, this is good stuff.
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