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07-10-2011, 11:07 PM   #1
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DR- decode it for me?

With the talk of the differences in DR between the K20, K7 and K5 I really have to see how it will pertain to me in my everyday shooting. I shoot more in studio than strictly outside and I aways work in RAW/DNG.

Its been said that even though the K7 lacks in DR its still more than print color film. If thats true then any better range is gravy. Obviously you'd need to light your subject to even out strong backlighting or sun but its not like it takes two stops to get from middle gray to blowout white.

If I get my exposures correct, would I really see a difference between the K7 and K5? Does the extra DR of the K5 mean that in the same backlit conditions the subject wont look as underexposed or does it jsut mean I can pull more detail from that same underexposed subject?

Hey, its not like slide film where it took a stop and a half to go from 18% gray to bright white and you REALLY had to get your exposure down. If the K7 was as narrow as that then there's no way they could have sold any units.

I'd like to hear people's answers.

07-10-2011, 11:38 PM   #2
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Yes, you're going to see a difference between the K5 and the K7/K20- there are almost two stops more of DR, and the overall level of noise is also up to two stops lower. Pentax really pulled themselves together with this body and delivered best-in-class IQ

There was a great photo of a black dog on the forum a while back that illustrated this perfectly, but unfortunately, I can't find it!

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07-13-2011, 10:27 PM   #3
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so, in practical terms, the K5 will retain detail and image information in an overexposed background (compared to a properly exposed subject) while it would get blown out on a K7/20?

Its never been crystal clear to me. Is better DR best served on the exposure side or the PP side?
07-13-2011, 10:31 PM   #4
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in practical terms it means you can say 'ooo i wish i had a fill flash here' and just push up 'fill light' in light room and instead of shadows noise getting brighter, real detail gets brighter and comes out of those shadows...

its least useful in a studio setup where lighting is totally under control.

07-14-2011, 01:17 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
There was a great photo of a black dog on the forum a while back that illustrated this perfectly, but unfortunately, I can't find it!
I was looking for those threads today as well. The only one I came up with was on the site I shall not name. Search for "How to recover a 10 stop underexposed K-5 image".
07-14-2011, 01:25 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by jboyde Quote
Its been said that even though the K7 lacks in DR its still more than print color film. If thats true then any better range is gravy.
This can be a very misleading way of looking at things.

And the reason I say this is where DR is most beneficial at the capture point rather than the media transfer stages. And so so we would benefit from wider DR both during and after capture due to the wider latitudes. Which has little(or nothing) to do with the capabilities of the destination medium when you think about it.

Also... contrary to what we me think, added DR will still benefit studio shooting also. and one such example of this can be found in the latitude of the K-5 files in contrast with earlier models(ie, K20D) not only under hot lights such as; snoots, highlight or kicker type lighting, but more importantly in the overhead gained in the shadow and color channels(RGB), which will come as improvements over earlier systems.

Anyways, I don't mean to drag this on but the short answer is that color gamut, DR and resolution will almost always surpass final output, but its in the transient stages that these matter most.

Hope this helps

Last edited by JohnBee; 07-14-2011 at 02:46 AM.
07-14-2011, 03:52 AM   #7
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In a studio setting, you probably will not see a big difference between the K5 and K7. Well, I do think colors are a little more accurate on K5, but its not big enough to notice. At normal printing size, with good exposure, the K7 does well below iso 800. It is out of those controlled settings that the K5 really shines.
07-14-2011, 04:11 AM   #8
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the diference between film and digital considering DR and saving blown-out or underexposed areas is that on film you exposed for shadows and brought back highlights in darkroom, while on digital you expose for highlights and bring back shadows in Lightroom
the K5 as I was able to find has a recovery reserve of at most 1 stop in highlights from raw, but at least 4 stops in shadows, without getting noisy
...sorry if I sound too amateurish...
maybe this example will help, it was exposed for the brightest part
https://picasaweb.google.com/rastislavstanik/DRAndShadowRecoveryOfK5?authuse...eat=directlink

07-14-2011, 07:05 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by jboyde Quote
With the talk of the differences in DR between the K20, K7 and K5 I really have to see how it will pertain to me in my everyday shooting. I shoot more in studio than strictly outside and I aways work in RAW/DNG.

Its been said that even though the K7 lacks in DR its still more than print color film. If thats true then any better range is gravy. Obviously you'd need to light your subject to even out strong backlighting or sun but its not like it takes two stops to get from middle gray to blowout white.

If I get my exposures correct, would I really see a difference between the K7 and K5? Does the extra DR of the K5 mean that in the same backlit conditions the subject wont look as underexposed or does it jsut mean I can pull more detail from that same underexposed subject?

Hey, its not like slide film where it took a stop and a half to go from 18% gray to bright white and you REALLY had to get your exposure down. If the K7 was as narrow as that then there's no way they could have sold any units.

I'd like to hear people's answers.
If you work in a studio with controlled lighting the you will see a slight improvement with a K-5 on a good monitor. Will the improvement show up in an actual print? Probably not. At one time the really good inkjets were able to reproduce a range of 7 EV+/- (depends on paper and ink). This is why a lot of B&W shooters stayed with film and some still do. Some of the newer inkjets can cover close to 10 EV (with the right paper and ink). A good monitor can reproduce around 9-10 EV. There some higher end monitors that perform better and a lot that perform worse.

If you shoot in 8 bit JPEG then you can only get 8+/- EV. If you shoot in RAW you can capture the full 14 EV, but you have to have a monitor/printer good enough to reproduce it.

It is great to capture the full 14 EV and have it in the RAW files for processing. For field work without controlled lighting it can be a game changer. The real advantage of the K-5 is for guys who shoot sports or lower light/high shutter speed events where lighting is challenging.
07-14-2011, 07:18 AM   #10
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Thanks for your answers. It clears it up for me a lot more.

I guess I'm trying to justify holding off getting the K5 when I have a perfectly running K7/20. I don't see the need of having 3 cameras (Murphy's law notwithstanding and I'm not a wedding shooter) so I figure I'll get the K5 to replace one when the time comes rather than add to inventory.
07-14-2011, 09:03 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by jboyde Quote
Thanks for your answers. It clears it up for me a lot more.

I guess I'm trying to justify holding off getting the K5 when I have a perfectly running K7/20. I don't see the need of having 3 cameras (Murphy's law notwithstanding and I'm not a wedding shooter) so I figure I'll get the K5 to replace one when the time comes rather than add to inventory.
At some point, I would trade the K20 for a K5. The thing about the K7 and K5 is that since they are exactly the same and so it is nicer to work with the two of them than with a K20 and K7 together. That said, I don't think there is any rush since you are doing well with them now.
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