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11-24-2010, 10:10 PM   #1
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Is K-7 AF fast enough for sports?

This is my first post even though I have been a member for some time and have followed the continued improvements to the Pentax digital line-up as a lurker. I am now retired and will have time to devote to learn DSLR's. I have several nice manual lenses from my MX and Super Program so it is a no brainer to stay with Pentax. I would love to start at the top with a K-5 but finances will not allow that path. So, I am considering either a used K-7 or a K-R. Because I have 9 grand kids and am involved in youth sports programs the camera I buy will have to have decent AF. From all I have read the K-R would meet that need but because being around outdoor sporting events I think the weather sealed K-7 makes more sense. I would appreciate some comments from experienced K-7 users about how well the AF would perform for soccer (oops football) and baseball games.

11-24-2010, 11:29 PM   #2
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I use a K-7 with 50-300 and 55-135 for soccer with good results. The fw v1.10 improved the AF a great deal. Canera setup: ASA 400 to 800, Tv 500 to 800. Shake reduction OFF when following the action. Enable the AF button for focusing and set for AFS.
11-24-2010, 11:41 PM   #3
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Yes the K-7 AF is fast enough. I shoot waves and surfers very often and I have no problem. The WR is really great in these harsch conditions in additon.

I think that the K-7 will work fine for football and baseball. In low light conditions, I would recommend to use a fast prime lens with large aperture for better results. In my case, I use the Nokton 58mm f1.4 for down and dusk conditions.

Hope that the comment will help.
11-24-2010, 11:43 PM   #4
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Check out my website (below). Everything from 24 July 2009 is done with K-7 and, usually, Sigma 70-200/f2.8 (screw focus) and, usually, a 1.4x TC (which slows focus down).

Short answer - yes.
Slightly extended answer - yes, but not as well as some other makes of camera, apparently.

11-24-2010, 11:44 PM   #5
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yes mate..its fast enough..heres one of my boys basket ball game..just take loads of pictures..thers bound to be a few keepers in amongst them all

11-25-2010, 12:44 AM   #6
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Yes it is! I think most cameras are. It's pretty much up to the photographer. You got to know the limits of your gear.





Pentax K-7 and DA*60-250

Last edited by x-country; 11-25-2010 at 12:48 AM. Reason: Added info
11-25-2010, 02:05 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tommot1965 Quote
just take loads of pictures..thers bound to be a few keepers in amongst them all
Sacrilege! You're only allowed to take a few, in manual everything, and they all have to sharp!
11-25-2010, 02:32 AM   #8
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Hmm.

Yes I have a K7 but if shooting football & baseball then maybe the Kr with the MUCH improved sensor is a better way to go. Improved AF. Improved high ISO (the K7 is poor in this regard, anything above 400 and the noise is clearly visible). A plastic bag and a rubber band keeps out showers if really necessary (or if you find that embarrassing then there is plenty of camera rain-gear that can be found on-line) and you wouldn't be shooting those sports in a rain-storm so showers is all you'd have to cope with.

It isn't a case of can the K7 take sports shots (as the other guys above has shown - it clearly can) but which camera is the best one for the job. IMO that would be the Kr whose high ISO capability would also enable you to use slower lenses without having to spend a bomb on fast lenses.

11-25-2010, 03:26 AM   #9
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The k-7 can certainly get the job done, but the newer bodies are better by quite a large margin. I don't think it's worth getting the K-r over the K-7 simply because it's not weather-sealed, though, and has fewer external controls. IIWU I'd either go for the K-7 now, or wait a little and get the K-5, which is two notches above the K-7 in IQ, and a notch above the K-r.

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11-25-2010, 06:24 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arpe Quote
Sacrilege! You're only allowed to take a few, in manual everything, and they all have to sharp!

LMAO

good job we aren't shooting film any more over-wise Id be Id be very poor...LOL
11-25-2010, 07:09 AM   #11
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There are two issues with sports: auto focus, where depending on the lens, you would have no trouble. I think the newer bodies are a little faster to focus and have a little quicker lock, but it probably isn't a lot. The second is shutter speed. If you are shooting during the day, you will have no difficulty getting a shutter speed fast enough to freeze the action, but if you are shooting in a dark arena or stadium, I wouldn't go over iso 3200 with the K7 and that may not be enough to get decent shots.

Finally, I don't know what lenses you have, but if you want to shoot sports seriously, you probably need a 70-200 f2.8 lens to go with whatever body you choose. Sigma HSM seems to be the fast focusing of the options out there.
11-25-2010, 09:14 AM   #12
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As a grandfather also who has shot my kids sports and now grandkids for the past 35 years, I would say yes, the K7 is certainly capable. Until 10 years ago, I was still doing everything with manual focus film cameras and no motor drive. The new K5 has some very improved AF according to reviews but the older Pentax cameras are certainly capable.
11-25-2010, 01:22 PM   #13
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Thanks to all for your very helpful replies.

What a great forum! Thanks to all of you for your quick response to my first ever post. The issue of AF was addressed well and your feedback tells supports my conclusion that the KR would most likely serve for fast action shots. I am not too worried about rain but more about dusty conditions and high humidity which we have plenty of here in east Texas. I have some good manual glass from my MX and Super Program so I will be doing a lot of manual shooting sa well. The K7 I am lookeng at comes with the weather sealed kit lens so that is the only AF I would have until I save up for more lens'.

I just stumbled on a KX with the kit lens for an unbelievable price of $150 from someone who does not know what they have. At that price I can get some more glass and save for what I am lusting for, the K5. I believe the KX would serve me well until I can get what I really want. Anyone disagree?
11-25-2010, 03:32 PM   #14
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My daughter uses the KX and finds it very good.
I just upgraded from K100D to K-7. Also very good.
I got especially for motorcycle racing in my town. Not worried about AF. As other people said, a lot is technique.
Have fun with what ever you choose !
Pete
11-25-2010, 03:42 PM   #15
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I can't really comment on using the K-7 for sports but I loved calling youth soccer "oops football" !

NaCl(peewee soccer is definitely "Oops football!" )H2O
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