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09-27-2013, 05:09 AM   #1
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K-30 - exposure difference between viewfinder and live view

Hello all,

My first post here, regarding my first DSLR...

If I shoot in live view on my K-30, the results are great. However, when using the viewfinder the images are consistantly under-exposed by about 0.7 stops . This seems to be the case regardless of metering mode.

I spoke with the shop, and they asked me to return it for investigation. They in turn returned it to Pentax, who have declared the camera to be within specification.

One of the reasons for me choosing a DSLR was so that I could use the viewfinder. I could manually add 2/3 stop exposure compensation, but wondered if there may be some way to set the camera up to compensate for the difference automatically?

Any help gratefully received! My dear old ME-Super still provides good service, so I'm rather dissapointed to have bought a brand new camera that visibly under-exposes.

Cheers,

Gavin.

p.s. I'm usually shooting in Av...

09-27-2013, 07:08 AM - 1 Like   #2
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If you shoot using Live View light may enter your viewfinder and influence metering.
Pentax has a viewfinder cover for that (Cover M).
09-27-2013, 07:11 AM - 1 Like   #3
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When you use the VF, you have selected in the INFO button / light mesure (Spot, centered weighted, all frame).

The LV may not use the same light mesure.

For exemple : i use spot mesure by default. my LV tend to do centered wieghhted mesure, or all frame. Hence the difference.
09-27-2013, 07:38 AM - 1 Like   #4
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I find the same behavior with some lenses. Is it because LV uses the sensor itself for exposure metering and the OVF uses it's own system near the prism?

I end up using exposure compensation in both systems because I use older M42 lens which have no way to tell the camera what aperture I'm at. Besides, the camera's exposure setting is just it's own guess. Remember with film we used to do our own pushing, burning, dodging, etc. Now all I need to do is push a button? Easy!

09-29-2013, 02:06 AM   #5
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Thank you all! Very helpful!
09-30-2013, 03:46 PM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cornholio Quote
If I shoot in live view on my K-30, the results are great. However, when using the viewfinder the images are consistantly under-exposed by about 0.7 stops. This seems to be the case regardless of metering mode..
That is quite normal. The viewfinder metering works off the image on the focusing screen - the brightness of this depends on the type of the screen and on the maximum aperture of the lens used (you don't say which lens you are using). Unfortunately the brightness does not change quite linearly with the f-number. I'd always suspected that there is a fiddle factor involved in the firmware to compensate for this, but it does not always work. The problem is even more acute if you use a focusing screen other than the stock one and old lenses which do not communicate with the body. Basically, the viewfinder metering system sucks.
09-30-2013, 09:53 PM - 1 Like   #7
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I guess the bottom line is that you should check your histograms and make adjustments as necessary. At some point you figure out that lens X at f-stop Y should generally have +0.7 or +1.0 compensation, or something like that.
10-01-2013, 06:02 AM   #8
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That's great, thanks guys. For the record, my AF lenses are the 18-55 kit one and a DA15 Ltd, so neither are what you'd call bright.

I've not heard my friends grumbling about this with their Canons or Nikons.

Anyway, I do appreciate the replies. Thank you again.

Gavin.

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