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02-21-2015, 01:56 PM   #1
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K5IIs single point focus

I notice that when my camera is in single point focus mode, the small red box in the center portion of the focusing screen seems to illuminate in any one of several areas, i.e. not consistently in the same spot, and rarely dead center. It is always in the center area, between ( ) and the different locations seem to overlap. This is true when the camera is in AF or MF mode.

1) am I seeing things?
2) is this the way it is supposed to work?
3) is there any way to designate just one of the spots?

Best regards,

02-21-2015, 02:04 PM   #2
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It sounds like you are confusing AF-S (single as opposed to continuous) with using the just the center AF point. To accomplish the latter, you need to turn the switch around the rear AF button to the top setting, as shown below:



If you want to select a single point other than the center point, set the switch to SEL and use the 4-way pad while looking through the viewfinder to select the point. Note that pressing the OK button while in SEL mode will switch the functionality of the 4-way pad back to controlling the self timer, white balance, flash, etc.

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02-21-2015, 04:38 PM   #3
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Thanks for the response. I do have the camera setting in the correct positions. The reason I notice it is that I spend a good amount of time with manual lenses mounted to the camera. For this reason, I usually pay pretty close attention to the small, red, square focus confirmation indicator in the center of the focusing screen. It appears to me that the focus indicator will flash, in ever so slightly, varied positions in the center region. It is as if there are three or four separate, but interlocking, positions where the indicator will flash.

Maybe I am imagining things.

Thanks again.
02-21-2015, 07:02 PM   #4
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The manual says on page 113 and 297 that with manual focus lenses, only the center focus point is active. I only see that center red square on my camera.

02-21-2015, 07:07 PM   #5
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Is it always the same brightness or maybe just a faint ghost light? Perhaps a loose focusing screen?
02-21-2015, 07:52 PM   #6
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You might just be seeing light reflections that faintly illuminate some of the other points. Pentax's viewfinder display technology isn't very refined in this area.

I'm actually fairly certain of this, since SEL mode doesn't work with manual lenses.

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02-21-2015, 08:52 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
You might just be seeing light reflections that faintly illuminate some of the other points. Pentax's viewfinder display technology isn't very refined in this area.
That's where I was leaning too but he said they were mainly within then ( ) area which would indicate something else. Nikon's view finder display is really nice (D7100) and hope pentax picks something similar up soon. So much more smooth and brighter to see.
02-22-2015, 07:47 PM   #8
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This entire thing came to me attention as, when trying to get shots of birds, I attempt to focus on the eye. So, given that a birds eye is a pretty small target, it is pretty easy to see, or think you see, some small inconsistency of the small red focus indicator in the center of the screen. I considered it may just be related to slight camera movement, but have attempted to rule that out. I don't know, I guess it is not that big a deal.

Nikon vs Pentax:

My full frame camera is a D750. I notice my manual focusing with the Pentax is much more accurate. With the D750 I have to rely entirely on the green focus indicator at the bottom of the OVF to get acceptable focus, but even using that, it seems a crap-shoot at times. With the K5IIs, I find I can often simply use the image view in the on the focusing screen to get acceptable focus; the focus indicator light consistently indicates acceptable focus. I do not know how the D7100, but I do not want Pentax to mover toward the D750 system, as far as manual focus goes.

Does the KatzEye focus screen significantly improve manual focus speed and accuracy? Do folks often encounter unexpected problems when they install the KatzEye screen?

02-22-2015, 09:27 PM   #9
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My feel is that it is faster. I have one in the K100D and one in the K10D but not in the K5.

Note that it might require shimming to be accurate. And it affects metering a little bit.
02-23-2015, 12:30 PM   #10
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Have you found that it actually allows you to improve focus accuracy?

Thanks for the response.
02-23-2015, 04:56 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by tennjed Quote
Have you found that it actually allows you to improve focus accuracy?

Thanks for the response.
Yes, in the center area covered by the prisms. Line up those two half-circles and that is the point of focus*, if the screen is shimmed correctly. (*I argued about this with someone who did not think it was really a point, and neither of us knew enough to prove our side. So take this as my opinion if you like, based on my experience, could be wrong.) That accuracy is only in the split-prism area, and most visible on vertical lines intersecting the prism split. Sometimes your subject does not have conveniently centered vertical features, so that accuracy is compromised by focus-recompose errors. Movement is a problem. I often try to shoot a nervous dog who will turn his head just after I perfectly line up those prisms on his eye. But it's great for prefocusing on a point where the subject will be soon. My camera AF is set to center point only and that keeps me looking in the center for focus.
02-23-2015, 09:37 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by tennjed Quote
Have you found that it actually allows you to improve focus accuracy?
Yes, I no longer doubt wetter the subject is in focus or not. Moving subjects (as described by Just1MoreDave) are obviously an issue but that will also be the case with an AF lens.
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