Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
11-07-2010, 06:52 PM   #1
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: knoxville
Posts: 22
Newbie! K20d dark photos & settings

Long time Forum lurker! Finally saved enough for K20d and 2 lens(DA* 50-135 & 16-45 F4). I know that there is a steep learning curve from my F30d and SX20is but I need to know why my shots are usually very dark. I am trying all kinds of settings but when I need that quick snapshot and do not have time to think about everything is it unreasonable for me to think that I can take a shot on the green Auto mode and it not be a little more accurate to what I see? I am reading and learning all I can and hope to take a class soon but am wanting some suggestions on starting out. If I give the camera to a friend /wife to take a shot I put it in green mode and when they give it back pics are more times than not very dark. Thanks for all your help.

Attached Images
 
11-07-2010, 07:08 PM   #2
Pentaxian
Pablom's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Jerusalem
Posts: 1,940
what metering mode are you using? wrong metering method for a particular scene will lead to wrong exposure

p.s. don't use green mode. ever.
11-07-2010, 07:17 PM   #3
Site Supporter
davidreilly3207's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: South Jersey
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 587
Doesn't look that dark. Are you calibrating your monitor?
11-07-2010, 07:56 PM   #4
Forum Member




Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Oklahoma
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 84
It maybe a tad dark but nothing a little PP can't handle. I use program mode a majority of the time, especially when just messing around.

11-07-2010, 11:18 PM   #5
Veteran Member
Ken T's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: California, USA
Posts: 537
Use TAv, Auto ISO 100-1250, +.7 Exposure Compensation, anh try with all 3 Metering Modes .
11-07-2010, 11:30 PM   #6
Loyal Site Supporter
imtheguy's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Virginia Beach
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,950
After 85,000 shots on my K20d I can atest that my copy takes slightly dark exposures too. I have read many times that Pentax does that as a conservative move to prevent blow-out from bright areas. Regardless, I often add +0.5 stops to the exposure when in Av or Tav mode.

Funny, my K-5 tends to overexpose slightly and I keep that camera at -0.5 exposure comp usually. All of this would only be a problem if there was no easy adjustment.
11-08-2010, 04:08 AM   #7
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: knoxville
Posts: 22
Original Poster
I was using spot metering and I have been reading on the forum today about metering and what effect it will have so maybe that has been some of the problem. I read don't use the green mode all over the forum so I know I have a LOT to learn and look forward to the challenge. Is there a go to setting that works more times than not when you are just picking up the camera and do not have time to adjust much? I am buying exposure book on the way home from work!
11-08-2010, 04:14 AM   #8
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: knoxville
Posts: 22
Original Poster
Yes to the monitor calibration and although it doesn't look that dark it was very bright outside and my histogram was far to the left. I am going to post a few examples that are more what I am talking about. Whats the best way to post pics with the info that ya'll need to see for making a better conclusion?

11-08-2010, 04:15 AM   #9
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: knoxville
Posts: 22
Original Poster
Thanks McSquared! I will give that a try this week.
11-08-2010, 04:18 AM   #10
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: knoxville
Posts: 22
Original Poster
Thanks Ken T! I have read that several times here this weekend. It looks like I am facing a steep learning curve!
11-08-2010, 04:21 AM   #11
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: knoxville
Posts: 22
Original Poster
Thanks Lee! I have seen several posts where you have offered some great advice and I am trying several of your ideas.
11-08-2010, 09:38 AM   #12
Inactive Account




Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Michigan, USA
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 7,484
QuoteOriginally posted by imtheguy Quote
After 85,000 shots on my K20d I can atest that my copy takes slightly dark exposures too. I have read many times that Pentax does that as a conservative move to prevent blow-out from bright areas. Regardless, I often add +0.5 stops to the exposure when in Av or Tav mode.

Funny, my K-5 tends to overexpose slightly and I keep that camera at -0.5 exposure comp usually. All of this would only be a problem if there was no easy adjustment.
So does mine. It was actually kind of a shock to me because every camera previously underexposed typically, in auto modes.

QuoteOriginally posted by rtrox Quote
I was using spot metering and I have been reading on the forum today about metering and what effect it will have so maybe that has been some of the problem. I read don't use the green mode all over the forum so I know I have a LOT to learn and look forward to the challenge. Is there a go to setting that works more times than not when you are just picking up the camera and do not have time to adjust much? I am buying exposure book on the way home from work!
You can use Spot metering if you understand what it is telling you in relation to your scene. You need to look at the entire viewfinder though and determine what your final exposure will look like. I'm of the camp that it's always better to slightly under expose anyway to save the highlights. Chances are, you metered for the Dog in your scene. What you've told the camera is that the Dog is 18% Gray (the only shade the meter understands, some say it's 12% but for the sake of discussion, we'll use 18). That's all well and good if the dog is in fact the middle of the shade spectrum of your scene. However, He is not. More likely the pavement is or even the grass. If you want to use spot metering (I use it almost exclusively to the chagrin of some here), set your camera to M mode and do some studying of how each area of a scene meters and set your camera accordingly.

Spot metering can lend itself to the auto modes if you make use of the AE-L but it really works best, in M mode. With it, you can tell the camera what shade is either Black, or White (or close to them) and the rest of your exposure will fall in line.



I actually didn't push this one far enough but if I had just let the camera auto expose, it too would have been too dark.

I also find spot metering useful when photographing This guy..



11-08-2010, 10:15 AM   #13
Site Supporter
SpecialK's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: So California
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 14,912
QuoteOriginally posted by rtrox Quote
I was using spot metering...
Unless you have a fair amount of experience with the "zone system" and interpreting your light meter, I would recommend not using the spot meter. In this case it made a light-toned dog middle gray - as it should.

Actually, there is very little difference in operation from your previous cameras.

Last edited by SpecialK; 11-08-2010 at 03:50 PM.
11-08-2010, 12:18 PM   #14
Veteran Member
nanhi's Avatar

Join Date: May 2009
Location: Bangalore, India
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 440
K20D Dark Photos and Settings

Dear RTROX, I was in the same predicament when I bought my K20D in May 2009. And you asked about settings, but no one suggested the right one. I had the same experience on this forum, so I found out the best settings. Here they are, and I bet you will start taking great photos:
a) use BRIGHT; Hue & Saturation "0", Contrast +2, Sharpness +3. See Fn menu.
b) use Auto AWB
c) Auto ISO between 100 & 800. Dont use Dynamic Range. Fn menu.
d) Centre point autofocus (SEL dial to center)
e) Spot metering is perfectly OK. Where you have an expanse of sky, snow or
water, use Matrix (multi segment) metering.
f)set auto focus to AF-S (single)
g) choose single exposure in the Fn menu
h) set JPEG quality to highest (premium) and 10 megapixel.
i) turn shake reduction ON
j) use Program (P) mode switching to Av (aperture priority) or Tv (shutter priority)
at the touch of the front and rear e-wheels. To return to Program mode just
press the green button.
k) keep the sun behind you. Shoot on sunny days.
Then post a few of your best shots.
You have great camera and an excellent lens collection.
11-08-2010, 06:34 PM   #15
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: knoxville
Posts: 22
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
Unless you have a fair amount of experience with the "zone system" and interpreting your light meter, I would recommend not using the spot meter. In this case it made a light-toned dog middle gray - as it should.

Actually, there is very little difference in operation from your previous cameras.
Thanks SpecialK! I do not have any experience so I will try the other settings. Just bought a book on Exposure so maybe that will help.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
camera, k20d, mode, pentax help, photography, settings, shot, time
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Photos print out so DARK. Why? Silverkarn Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 18 10-20-2010 09:00 PM
Soft spot in photos? Humidity? Settings bugsy603 Photographic Technique 9 06-14-2010 06:52 PM
Taking mosaic stitch photos with k20? What settings? segvoia Photographic Technique 4 08-17-2009 03:12 PM
Dark photos catt410 Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 5 07-03-2009 10:06 PM
Dark Photos with K10D Amydaveg Pentax DSLR Discussion 36 01-06-2009 10:42 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 11:48 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top