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05-14-2011, 01:08 AM   #1
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Pentax K-x Af assist

I have a little (big) problem with my kx, even with fairly light lenses (Tamron 17-50 2.8, Sigma 20mm 1.8) the autofocus in low light conditions is difficult, makes the ring back and forth 2 or 3 times before to then shoot, this at best, often just can not focus.

Not having the af assist led, the only alternative is to use the flash as an assistant who sincerely makes a huge mess and not much faster the process.

Now my question is, is there any device to be mounted in the hotshoe to serve as AF assist? Maybe infrared?

If not, what do you recommend DIY?

05-14-2011, 01:39 AM   #2
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There are LED lights you can mount on the hot-shoe that people mainly use for video that can be handy. dealextreme and dinodirect and ebay have plenty of those.

But before you get into more hardware, perhaps:

1: don't use a UV filter - they dim the lens and also can play havoc with AF (if applicable);
2: use manual focus and learn to use DOF and focus zones...
3: use center spot AF and the focus-and-recompose method, rather than 5/11 AF.

05-14-2011, 04:13 PM   #3
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Hi, first thanks for the advice, I followed these instructions already, but unfortunately with the viewfinder of my kx and my use of glasses I find manual focus difficult in low light situations so that you can not even af.

I was looking for a device that works just like an af assistant, that comes on during the focus and went out just before the shot. But I could not find a standalone device.

I thought that a cheap and quick diy way would be to use a diffused little red laser pointer (I read somewhere that red is better to help af) and use it when needed, but I asked specifically to see if there is a device that suits my needs or a more efficient diy idea.
05-14-2011, 08:54 PM   #4
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I'm not sure which flash you're writing of.

The pesky AF assist from the popup flash was just crazy annoying to everyone.

So on my K-X, I gave up and use a hotshoe flash set for AF assist only. They work well, for me at any rate, but were another step to get ready to shoot.

05-16-2011, 09:05 AM   #5
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focusing in low light

QuoteOriginally posted by befocus Quote
Hi, first thanks for the advice, I followed these instructions already, but unfortunately with the viewfinder of my kx and my use of glasses I find manual focus difficult in low light situations so that you can not even af.

I was looking for a device that works just like an af assistant, that comes on during the focus and went out just before the shot. But I could not find a standalone device.

I thought that a cheap and quick diy way would be to use a diffused little red laser pointer (I read somewhere that red is better to help af) and use it when needed, but I asked specifically to see if there is a device that suits my needs or a more efficient diy idea.
Hi, I'm sorry to say that you bought the wrong camera! You need a camera that has leds that light up in the VF - the KX hasn't got these - You must listen for the beep sound that tells you the camera has focused or look for the six sided shape to light up at the bottom of the VF.

If the camera can't focus, then the lighting conditions are really too dark for a picture without a flash.

Perhaps a small but bright LED battery torch/flashlight can be helpful - you switch it on and hold it next to the camera pointing at the subject. The LED pointer also works but if it shines in a person's eye, you may be creating a problem for them.
05-16-2011, 01:47 PM   #6
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What's wrong with the hexagon that tells you you're in focus? The af doesn't af work in low light.
Befocus,
I have a flash that has a af assist light that goes on in low light situation. It doesn't work amazingly well, but it does help till about 8-10 ft it has a red cover so the light emits a red beam.
Jake
05-20-2011, 01:47 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by jlaubza Quote
Hi, I'm sorry to say that you bought the wrong camera! You need a camera that has leds that light up in the VF - the KX hasn't got these - You must listen for the beep sound that tells you the camera has focused or look for the six sided shape to light up at the bottom of the VF.
The problem is not that, I do not need the LEDs in vf because I only shot with the center spot af point.
QuoteOriginally posted by jlaubza Quote
If the camera can't focus, then the lighting conditions are really too dark for a picture without a flash.
with high ISO, wide aperture , and steady hands (or a monopod), it's never too dark to shoot without flash, but if i can't focus correctly I can not take advantage of the good performance in low light of the k-x
QuoteOriginally posted by jlaubza Quote
Perhaps a small but bright LED battery torch/flashlight can be helpful - you switch it on and hold it next to the camera pointing at the subject. The LED pointer also works but if it shines in a person's eye, you may be creating a problem for them.
I was seriously thinking about a solution of this type for now, I would like to try with a red laser with a diffraction grating applied, the light so widespread should not be so dangerous, also it would be possible to focus in areas with no or poor details
05-22-2011, 06:51 PM   #8
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There are flashes you can use that will only enable the auto-focus beam and not enable the firing of the flash, so your photos won't look well lighted if you don't want a photo with flash lighting.

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