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01-15-2010, 07:39 PM   #1
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K7 menu settings

I recently purchased a k7 and am trying to figure out what would be the best setting for couple of the menu options. If I shoot in RAW are the following best to select or not? Do they slow the write speeds of the camera down significantly?
  • Lens Correction: should the distortion and lateral chromatic ab corrections be ticked or not? The only lenses that I have at the moment are the 18-55 kit lens and the DA40.
  • Dynamic Range Setting: Does this do the same thing as HDR or the shadows/highlights tool in photoshop? I notice that for highlight correction minimum ISO is set to 200 so it's probably not worth using that but should I put the shadow correction up one or two levels?

Also what sort of test do you need to do to figure out what the lens correction for each lens should be and is it worth doing it in the first place? Is it one of those sheets of paper with converging lines and the like?

Thanks in advance,
Ryan

01-17-2010, 04:31 PM   #2
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You're contradicting yourself. First you say "If I shoot in RAW..." and then you list two options that do not get applied to RAW files (Lens Correction and Dynamic Range). Both of those settings can be applied when you process the RAW file, but they do nothing to the RAW file itself.

As far as I know, Distortion Correction does not have any adjustments. It's solely dependent on the lens you have attached to the camera at the time you take the picture. The camera reads the distortion data from the lens, which is determined by Pentax at the factory, and applies a correction to the image based on that. You can't adjust how much correction gets applied. As far as I know, only DA and DA* lenses support this feature. It does slow down JPG rendering considerably, so shooting with it turned on can be a pain. You can also apply the same correction when you develop the RAW file in-camera or using DCU4 since that option is present (the distortion data gets saved in the EXIF metadata). Or you can apply a manual correction using other software, but those don't take the lens' distortion data into consideration.

Dynamic Range tries to get more detail out of the captured data, and interprets it in the final image. It's nothing like HDR. But again, it doesn't actually change the RAW file itself. Also, I find that the Shadow Correction just makes dark shadows grainy. Highlight Correction does seem to improve the highlight detail that gets rendered, but it kicks the ISO up to a minimum of 200, which I find annoying. The few times I'd like to use Highlight Correction are exactly those times when I'd be shooting at ISO 100 anyways. You can pull all the same details out using post processing, and it might look better at ISO 100 than it would have at ISO 200.
01-18-2010, 05:49 AM   #3
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Thanks for clearing that up. I just assumed that they were corrections that got automatically applied to the RAW data because unlike a few of the other settings like HDR and digital filters it is able to be changed whilst in RAW mode.
01-18-2010, 06:55 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by tsangpo Quote
Thanks for clearing that up. I just assumed that they were corrections that got automatically applied to the RAW data because unlike a few of the other settings like HDR and digital filters it is able to be changed whilst in RAW mode.
The settings you choose do get saved to the RAW file, but they don't change the image data. They're only there for reference by DCU4 (and maybe some other software, I'm not sure) when you process the files. If you turn those settings on, and then develop the RAW file in the camera itself, you'll find that those options are pre-selected for RAW development. However, you can turn them off too. You could just as easily leave them off and enable them when you do processing.

They're also settings that *would* apply to JPG files if you were to hit the RAW button on the camera and had that button set to enable JPG instead, which is another reason why the camera lets you change those settings even if you're shooting in RAW.

The exception to all this is highlight correction. I don't see any way to enable/disable that when developing RAW files, so it's possible that actually does affect the image data. But as I said, I never use it since the only time I'd need it would be when I shoot in ISO 100. Maybe someone can enlighten us on that aspect.

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