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07-07-2011, 07:58 AM   #1
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K-5 - how to control camera?

Hello
I am considering to buy K-5 or D7000. Can you help me to understand of camera interface?

Just play with D90 menu (which controls should be similar to D7000) and find out, that you can very easily browse, dive into and adjust any setting only by rear and front dial; after changes you confirm by "ok" button.
Can you do the same on K-5? If "yes", then does it apply even for Wb, Custom image, Flash and Others?
I am reading manual of K-5 and for example,
to set camera into "Hi speed cont shoot" you have to do following:
4-way control up, right, down, ok.

Almost whole manual of K-5 guides you through menu and adjustments by using 4-way controller.
Is 4-way controller THE ONLY way how to browse, dive, change and adjust values in main and "4-way controller" menu?
OR
Can you manage all above simply by using rear and front dial?

Many reviews highlights controls of K-5.

07-07-2011, 09:28 AM   #2
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It really depends on what you want to do. For instance. Many of the shooting parameters are accessible from on screen menus that can be accessed by pressing the INFO button. Then you navigate to the parameter you want to change. You can either select it and change it with the 4 way controller, or use the dials. Many things you'll set once and leave them alone. For instance, WB. Set it to Auto White Balance (AWB) and forget about it. Navigating through the drive mode menu has never really been an issue to me. I guess if you don't want to do it, then buy a different camera.

I've never touched a Nikon but I'm sure there's more to it than Just turning the dials. In different modes on the K5 you can customize the functions of the dials and some buttons. For instance, in Av and Tv, I have the front dial set for ISO even though there is an ISO button. In both of these modes, the green button will turn on Auto ISO and turning the front dial will set Manual ISO. After a couple days of playing with and using the K5, this really all becomes second nature. The RAW / FX button, always useless until the K5, can be used to select certain items, including a regularly used drive mode. I don't know how it stacks against other brands (and don't care) but the K5 is the most customizable camera I've ever used.

07-07-2011, 09:44 AM   #3
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On the k-5 you can also store individual user settings, and then just access them from the mode dial. That enables you to make 5 presets of settings you use often, so you dont have to dive through all the menus each time.
07-07-2011, 09:50 AM - 1 Like   #4
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I'd break this down into 3 categories:

Stuff you can do without taking your eye away from the viewfinder

* Change aperture
* Change shutter speed
* Change ISO (and switch to auto ISO)
* Change EV compensation
* Set aperture and shutter speed based on metered light level and EV comp (green button)
* DOF preview
* Back button AF (or AF hold)
* AE lock
* Focus mode (AF-S, AF-C, M)
* AF points (centre, selectable, multipoint)
* Pop up the flash
* Custom button, which does one of (2 here, 3 in next section):
1. File format toggle
2. Quickly turn on exposure bracketing

Stuff you can do in 2-3 seconds (you have to look somewhere other than the viewfinder)

* Change mode (M, Av, etc)
* Change metering mode (spot, centre-weighted, multi-segment)
* Turn on live view (you could do this with your eye to the viewfinder but that would be counterproductive)
* Drive mode
* White balance
* Flash mode
* Some kind of fruity colour effect thing ("Natural", "Bright", etc) - never used it, I shoot raw.
* Electronic level (hit info twice, optionally)
* Custom button, which does one of (others in previous section):
3. Digital preview (no real use to anyone, correct me if I'm wrong)
4. Electronic level
5. Composition adjust (moves the sensor a bit, for people with imprecise tripods?)


(On "info" screen)
* alter auto-ISO upper and lower limits
* Number of AF points (5 or 11) (who changes this? why is it even here?)
* Highlight correction, shadow correction, a bunch of fruity filters, "HDR", yawn.
* File format
* Resolution
* Quality
* Shake reduction

Stuff you have to poke around in the menu for

Everything else.




..I think that's fairly comprehensive. Bet someone else did the same thing while I was writing it!

07-07-2011, 11:43 AM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ladabu Quote
Hello

Almost whole manual of K-5 guides you through menu and adjustments by using 4-way controller.
Is 4-way controller THE ONLY way how to browse, dive, change and adjust values in main and "4-way controller" menu?
OR
Can you manage all above simply by using rear and front dial?
Hi Ladabu,

On the K-5, you can navigate the menus with the e-dials. Front dial controls the tabs, and rear dial controls the pages within the tab. 4 way controller controls the selection of menu items on a page and choices thereafter, confirmed by the OK button.

It's pretty fast once you get the hang of it. You can get to the first page of any tab by just scrolling the front dial. You can get to the last page of any tab by going to the next tab and backing into the previous tab with the rear dial.

As mentioned, many settings can be controlled through the Info Screen. Others can be controlled by programming buttons or e-dials.

In the 4-way controller menus, the only way to change settings is with the 4-way controller buttons.

I find the K-5 menus pretty intuitive, but I've been shooting Pentax DSLRs for quite a while, and menu navigation is pretty much a matter of getting used to it.

Scott
07-10-2011, 10:30 PM   #6
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JeffJS:
Automatic WB is very precise on Dslr's. I guess you can leave it on auto. I wish to learn how to make green more intense.
D7000 is overall well controlled (except rear control panel - probably let you control it only by cursor, but there are not such an important things. the most of important controls have assigned direct button). Nikon has got customizable dials too.
K-5 offers more User positions. Happy to hear about customization option.
07-10-2011, 10:35 PM   #7
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Skog:
3 more position then D7k has got. Good good. Very useful !
07-11-2011, 12:36 AM   #8
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timh:
Thank you for such an amazing list. I wish to find such a thing in any serious review article. Good job!! You should be reviewer.
Drive mode up button a bit crowdy, but everything easy understandable.

07-11-2011, 02:06 AM   #9
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snostorm:
Thank you Scott. You describe, what I wanted to know.
It is a bit disappointing for me, that 4-controller rules to many setting, but it makes sence once I have seen menus.
But if there are two dials available, why not to use them?? Our fingers are almost whole time over there, why not to make them busy? Instead of "walking miles" with thumb, he he.
I own D3100, which controls are ridiculously useless. It is actually reason, why I wanna change camera. Logically D7k might be option, but it is brick :-)
And I am tourist and I don't care about brand (all are good).
And there is K-5 with amazing grip!
07-12-2011, 07:20 PM   #10
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The 4-way controller is pretty much standard interface for most cameras now. For the past 10-15 years, really. It lets you do everything - the wheels would require you to move away from the 4-way to do something the 4-way is completely capable of itself...
07-14-2011, 06:03 AM   #11
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I switched from d80 myself, so I can comment on this a bit. Amount of customizations that are avail on k5 are much-much more compared to d80. I`m sure that d7k is not very different in schema that you take to control DSLR.
07-14-2011, 12:43 PM   #12
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hello Ter-or and Masloff. It is true, that 4-way controller is standart. You achieve any adjustment with it by clear and logical way. Unfortunately I couldn't try behavior of K-5 on my own, so I guess only by reading manual. I am sorry if my suggestions are wrong.
D90 behaves very well in sense of quick adjustment by direct controls. By holding any direct control button + turning dial, you are achieving basic changes. Great example is flash button. One touch pop-up flash; once up - holding button plus turning rear dial swap mode, front over/under exposed.
Whoever buys camera which cost 1000e or more, probably very well knows (or at least guess), how to work with basic parameters set-up for shooting.
You know exactly, what you want to achieve. If there is direct button, why to "complicated" browse in matrix of commands? Why you have to take so many steps for adjustment, if there is possibility to do everything within one move? It is not because of laziness, it is the modern efficient use of controls. Quick and precise.
Matrix of K-5 is surely well organizer and it is not the end of the world. Good grip and whole time stabilizer are big advantage of K-5.
Controls seems to be challenge for Pentax. Unless I missed something important.
(i'm just amateur starting with dslr.)
No idea, how works building-up of new firmware, but I am sure there is always place to do many things better, specially when such and popular product.
07-14-2011, 03:13 PM   #13
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No problem about the list! I don't have the patience to do actual reviews though.

From what I can tell, Pentax let you use the wheels to alter continuous parameters - i.e. numbers. So shutter speed, aperture, EV, ISO, zoom (in review mode), selected image index (in review mode). They don't use a wheel to select between discrete options, ones which are qualitatively different.

That may be internal policy, the ideology of the designers, or just a coincidence. I can see where it comes from if it is deliberate, and I'm not sure whether I agree or not.

I will say, though, that even if there's a perfect way to change settings it won't be significantly faster than how Pentax do it.
07-15-2011, 09:55 AM   #14
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The only control I really miss from the K-10 to the K-5 is the dedicated Shake Reduction switch. That's not deep in menus, but I liked having the switch.

Otherwise, the only reason I go into the menus with any frequency is to do something like use digital filters or HDR. I did set things up early on to allow manual lenses and things like that.

You'll find the K-5 menus pretty intuitive. Some things you'll need to consult the manual about, like setting up Catch-in-Focus. The manual can make things kind of daunting, though, I'm sure.

I like the idea of holding a button and using the dial to scroll thru options, though, that does make a lot of sense. Particularly for things like flash, bracketing ranges etc. It's nothing which can't be added via firmware - perhaps they'll notice things now and make this kind of change.

Last edited by TER-OR; 07-15-2011 at 09:58 AM. Reason: added comment
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