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10-19-2013, 10:05 AM   #1
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Lightroom Tethering not supported because of Pentax

Lightroom has a very fine Tethering option but the bad thing is that it does not work with Pentax cameras.
I know there is a way to use other applications like Pentax Camera Remote and PKtether, but it would be extremely nice to be able to use the built in tethering tool i Lightroom.

According to Adobe the reason it does not work, is because Pentax don't cooperate by giving Adobe the necessary sdk for them to incorporate support for Pentax cameras.

See answer on Adobe forums here:
Adobe Community: No Pentax camera in Tethered camera support

So, why don't Pentax give Adobe this information so that all the Pentax users could be able to use this tethering tool? Please Pentax - help Adobe make the support and I will be a very happy photographer

Here's the list of supported cameras in Adobe Lightroom:
Tethered camera support in Lightroom

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10-19-2013, 02:13 PM - 2 Likes   #2
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Pentax (Ricoh Imaging) would have not to give Adobe an information, but:
- to write a SDK
- to test it
- to release it to Adobe and other 3rd-parties, maybe even as a public download
- to offer support for it
Assuming the firmware is ready for commercial-level tethering (and not only service usage). The firmware side might have to be validated as well, and changes could be necessary.

I'm not saying they shouldn't do it, just putting things in perspective.
10-19-2013, 02:23 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Pentax (Ricoh Imaging) would have not to give Adobe an information, but:
- to write a SDK
- to test it
- to release it to Adobe and other 3rd-parties, maybe even as a public download
- to offer support for it
Assuming the firmware is ready for commercial-level tethering (and not only service usage). The firmware side might have to be validated as well, and changes could be necessary.

I'm not saying they shouldn't do it, just putting things in perspective.
The tethering works fine in e.g. PKtethering, so it shouldn't be any problem using the same info in Adobe. I think it's just a question of cooperation between Pentax and Adobe.
10-19-2013, 02:35 PM   #4
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It would certainly be a welcome development for the K-3, and earlier bodies, to have tethering enabled in apps like Lightroom.

Pentax did offer their own tethering apps before in the K20 days, they offer tethering software for the 645D that I suspect was not developed in-house., and now they obviously have been working with the Flucard people to allow remote camera control via the Flucard Android and iOS apps for the K-3. So it doesn't seem impossible for Pentax to offer a SDK for 3rd party developers like Adobe to use for Lightroom, or Phase One to use with Capture One. There must be one floating around.

10-19-2013, 03:43 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by ArneTorp Quote
The tethering works fine in e.g. PKtethering, so it shouldn't be any problem using the same info in Adobe. I think it's just a question of cooperation between Pentax and Adobe.
Without a public release-ready SDK? I don't think so.
Even if the firmware supports it (maybe for use with service applications), there's code to be written and everything will need to be QA tested. All the normal software development stuff.
Hopefully Ricoh Imaging will decide to do it; but keep in mind there's a cost associated to it.
10-19-2013, 03:57 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Without a public release-ready SDK? I don't think so.
If I remember right the PK/Tether developer reverse engineered the firmware, with no help from Pentax. While that might be OK for a small independent, no way is Adobe going to. Without an approved SDK from Pentax and possibly even a financial contribution from Pentax I don't see Adobe moving a finger.

It would be a great thing, don't get me wrong.
10-19-2013, 04:26 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by ArneTorp Quote
Lightroom has a very fine Tethering option but the bad thing is that it does not work with Pentax cameras.
I'm not sure LR's tethering is that fine.

I've observed the need for restarts, cameras not responding, etc. many times across all camera brands. Of course, these issues could be outside Adobe's control but judging from the other code quality, I suspect they could do better with tethering as well.

Note that LR has a "watched folder" functionality. If you can get your images from the camera to a particular folder -- e.g., with PKTether or a FLUcard -- then LR will display them automatically. Not sure whether there any differences to the regular tethering functionality.

Given that the K-3 has a USB3 connector, I hope Pentax will exploit that and offer tethering through that connector in the future. The speed increase -- even over competitors -- could be a major attraction for some studio shooters.

P.S.: Ian Lyons, the person who said Pentax is to blame, is not an Adobe employee. He is one of those Adobe apologists who are always ready to tell a newbie that Adobe's product shortcomings really are just a lack of understanding on the newbie's behalf. While the explanation that Pentax has not provided Adobe with required software / API-documentation is very plausible, Ian Lyons neither says that directly nor would it mean a whole lot if he did.

Last edited by Class A; 10-19-2013 at 04:34 PM.
12-21-2013, 08:10 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Without a public release-ready SDK? I don't think so.
Even if the firmware supports it (maybe for use with service applications), there's code to be written and everything will need to be QA tested. All the normal software development stuff.
Hopefully Ricoh Imaging will decide to do it; but keep in mind there's a cost associated to it.
There is also a cost associated with NOT doing it.

12-21-2013, 08:32 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Catscradle Quote
There is also a cost associated with NOT doing it.
Really? Because I'm pretty sure that anyone who actually need tethering switched to Canikon long ago.
12-21-2013, 07:30 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
Really? Because I'm pretty sure that anyone who actually need tethering switched to Canikon long ago.
Or still using their K10D.
12-21-2013, 09:08 PM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by ArneTorp Quote
The tethering works fine in e.g. PKtethering, so it shouldn't be any problem using the same info in Adobe. I think it's just a question of cooperation between Pentax and Adobe.
Per Pentax it isn't that simple. There is a "Co" in cooperation for a reason. Adobe (and Apple) are much more controlling and have much more specific standards than others, and require rights be granted to them, not the other way round.

Last edited by monochrome; 12-22-2013 at 07:45 AM.
12-22-2013, 03:13 AM   #12
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AFAIK reverse engineering is already an accepted practice with big brands. Take for instance Lenses and flashes such as Tamron, Sigma and Metz. I don't think anything sould prevent Adobe from doing the same with Pentax tethering.

More likely the obstacles are either just the cost vs benefit of them doing it, or for more recent models that it just cannot be done.

The latter I say because it seems to me there is no third party tethering either for the K-30, K-03 and (I think) K-5ii, so we cannot even be sure that tethering is at all possible with those cameras.

As for the K-3 my understandfing is that the APIs for the Flucard tethering will be released by Pentax, which will make it possible for anyone to implement tethering in their software. If/when they do this it will be much easier (read less costly) for Adobe to implement it in LR as opposed to having to reverse engineer the interface.
12-22-2013, 03:31 AM   #13
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I notice that even after the list has been updated for Lightroom v5.2,
Tethered camera support in Lightroom
Lightroom tethering still only supports Canon, Nikon and Leica bodies.

Not a single Sony or Olympus or Panasonic or Fuji or Phase One or Hasselblad body is on that list. So Pentax isn't alone in not being having tethering support in Lightroom. Maybe the 'problem' is more with Adobe than camera manufacturers like Sony or Pentax.
12-22-2013, 03:47 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by lister6520 Quote
..no third party tethering either for the K-30, K-03 and (I think) K-5ii, so we cannot even be sure that tethering is at all possible with those cameras...
PK_tether v0.70 supports K5II and K5IIs. K-30 and K-01 are still not supported, however. K-3 is a bit new.

Full list:

Pentax k-x, K7, K5, K-5II/ K-5IIs, k-r, K20D, K10D, K200

PKtriggercord, however, does support the K-30, as well as the K-5II/ K-5IIs. K-01 support is also there, but with bugs. Full list is:
  • Pentax K-x
  • Pentax K10D (Samsung GX-10)
  • Pentax K20D (Samsung GX-20)
  • Pentax istDS Not working
  • Pentax K200D
  • Pentax K-7
  • Pentax K-r
  • Pentax K-5
  • Pentax K-m / K2000
  • Pentax K-30
  • Pentax K-01 bugs
  • Pentax K-5 II / K-5 IIs

The Pentax camera control interface is clearly pretty well developed and accessible, as even keen amateurs have been able to develop a range of tethering tools for Pentax.

It's probably fair to conclude that a big software house like Adobe, with access to thousands of highly qualified software engineers, could probably write Pentax tethering into Lightroom in a less than a week if they wanted to. So the issue must be licensing or money or something else.
12-22-2013, 05:30 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
I notice that even after the list has been updated for Lightroom v5.2,
Tethered camera support in Lightroom
Lightroom tethering still only supports Canon, Nikon and Leica bodies.

Not a single Sony or Olympus or Panasonic or Fuji or Phase One or Hasselblad body is on that list. So Pentax isn't alone in not being having tethering support in Lightroom. Maybe the 'problem' is more with Adobe than camera manufacturers like Sony or Pentax.
While they're not natively supported, we've been able to tether Sony A850 and Hasselblad H3D cameras with LR5 just fine (on MacOSX, fwiw), there are plug-ins that allow to do so.
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