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04-25-2013, 10:15 PM   #1
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K5 Exposure Bracket Shift

Hi all, I'm having an issue with my K5 when I bracket exposures. For example...3 exposures at -2, 0, +2. Sometimes, not all the time though, when I take the photos one of three will be shifted slightly. I thought it might be me when pressing the shutter button, but it also happens when I use a remote shutter release. Sometimes I like to blend all three images together, but it's impossible when one if the images shifts. I've never had an issue like this before. I searched the forums, but couldn't find anything similar. Any ideas what the deal is? Thanks!

04-25-2013, 11:27 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by SMcGuire45 Quote
Sometimes, not all the time though, when I take the photos one of three will be shifted slightly. I thought it might be me when pressing the shutter button, but it also happens when I use a remote shutter release. Sometimes I like to blend all three images together, but it's impossible when one if the images shifts.
If you are shooting hand-held, the shift is inevitable and almost unavoidable. 3 Shots are fired in quick succession and sometimes when the shutterspeeds are high enough, they're fired off so quickly that the shots end up lining up perfectly (depending on how stable your grip on the camera is). More often than not, the shutterspeeds are short enough to produce individually sharp images but the time between the shutter opening on the first shot and closing on the last simply is too long for you to hold the camera perfectly steady over that time.

If you are shooting from a tripod with a remote release, the only way this could happen is if you did not switch off SR. The anti-shake system will continue to move the sensor around slightly causing loss of sharpness/detail but also the described lack of alignment. Only other source of misalignment could be thing moving in the image like swaying branches, blowing leaves, birds and people (the latter 2 not necessarily in that order).

My advice:
1. Always switch SR off when shooting from a tripod (whether multishot or not)
2. If you forget (1), try using the 2-second timer setting as it will switch off SR automatically
3. If you are having issues with handheld brackets, use automatic alignment software as found in many HDR programs (I use align_image_stack but anything will work)
4. I'm purely open-source on Linux but I cannot believe Photoshop (or its competitors) on Windows or OSX do not have scripts (or actions I believe they're called) to automatically align and blend images. Sadly I can't point you to them because of my somewhat myopic focus on Linux - my apologies for that.
04-25-2013, 11:43 PM   #3
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before you click, check your shutter speed. If it says 1/125 then your +2 will be at 1/30 which is difficult for handheld shots.
04-26-2013, 06:11 AM   #4
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Thanks for the replies! Sorry, I should've specified that I always shoot on a tripod. It might be the SR though. I'll have to double check when I get home. I know I turned it off at some point, but that's not to say its not back on somehow. That would make sense with what the images are doing and the misalignment. Hopefully that's what it is!

04-26-2013, 09:08 AM   #5
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Sounds like you either have "Horizon Correction" enabled or are using composition adjustment. I found that when bracketing, they only apply to the first shot.
04-26-2013, 05:54 PM   #6
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So I checked and SR is indeed off as I thought. I'll have to check for Horizon Correction. It's definitely not composition adjustment. I'm going to experiment tonight and see if I can provide more insight. Thanks for the responses!
04-26-2013, 07:35 PM   #7
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I did have the Automatic Horizon Correction turned on and I believe that was the culprit. It didn't happen all the time and after reading at length about it, I think that was causing my issue. Thanks to all who replied and thanks so much Karl Stevens...appreciate it!
04-27-2013, 08:40 AM   #8
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SMcGuire45 - I raised this question about 6 months back. I also do manual blends in PS and this was driving me crazy. I tested this with K5 and Km and a bunch of lenses and always had a fraction shift when taking 5 brackets. I came to the conclusion it must be somthing to do with the sensor shift. Im pretty sure it was not caused by Horizon Correction as I tried turning this off and still had the same issue.

The way I work around this is to load the brackets into a stack in Photoshop and select - align layers (Im assuming you are using PS)??? This is under the file/script menu.

04-27-2013, 09:38 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by newmikey Quote
automatically align
Yep it's certainly in CS6 and guess what it's called, the original if not nifty description of, auto align layers.
04-27-2013, 12:13 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by mde1970 Quote
SMcGuire45 - I raised this question about 6 months back. I also do manual blends in PS and this was driving me crazy. I tested this with K5 and Km and a bunch of lenses and always had a fraction shift when taking 5 brackets. I came to the conclusion it must be somthing to do with the sensor shift. Im pretty sure it was not caused by Horizon Correction as I tried turning this off and still had the same issue.

The way I work around this is to load the brackets into a stack in Photoshop and select - align layers (Im assuming you are using PS)??? This is under the file/script menu.
Well that's a bummer hearing that it's not being caused by the Automatic Horizon Correction. I don't own Photoshop. I use LR/Enfuse with Lightroom4 to blend my multiple exposures. The program is great...but it works better and faster when images are aligned properly out of the camera like they're supposed to be. This is super frustrating and I'm surprised this hasn't been a bigger issue with K-5 users. I love the K-5 and it's the best camera I've owned, but this is becoming a major issue for me.
04-27-2013, 12:36 PM   #11
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I spent about 5-6 hours trying to find a fix for this, shooting on different settings with different kit and could not find any answer (as I previously said, I tried different cameras and lenses, turned horizon correction off, tried with remote, SR off and mirror up function). Sometimes I'd find 4-5 shots would align but the 6th would be a fraction out. Yep its frustrating but guess I'm lucky that the SW I use can get around it (both photomatix and PS will auto align). I wonder if it's worth asking Pentax why this happens (perhaps they could recommend a workaround)???
04-27-2013, 12:46 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by mde1970 Quote
I spent about 5-6 hours trying to find a fix for this, shooting on different settings with different kit and could not find any answer (as I previously said, I tried different cameras and lenses, turned horizon correction off, tried with remote, SR off and mirror up function). Sometimes I'd find 4-5 shots would align but the 6th would be a fraction out. Yep its frustrating but guess I'm lucky that the SW I use can get around it (both photomatix and PS will auto align). I wonder if it's worth asking Pentax why this happens (perhaps they could recommend a workaround)???
mde1970...Yea, I was trying multiple setting and lenses last night too. I thought I had it figured out since it worked twice in a row with two different lenses and no shift. I do own Photomatix but don't like using it. I suppose I could just use it for aligning, but that just increases my workflow. There's got to be a reason this is happening and I would suspect a fix. Definitely disappointing that you can't shoot 3, 5, etc. multiple exposures without them being properly aligned.
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