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05-28-2008, 05:18 PM   #1
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Better AF with k10d/k20d/k200d?

Hi guys,

First off, hello! This is my first time posting here.

I've owned a k100d for about 9 months now and am approaching 7000 snaps. Recently I had the opportunity to try out my friends' nikon d50s and sony a100s. What surprised me the most was the speed of the autofocus! In indoor situations, both the Nikon and Sony were significantly faster.

I'm sure this has been debated to death here, but (at least for my camera) the k100d is pretty frustratingly slow. I've been considering switching to another brand altogether, but of course I would prefer to avoid that hassle. Do any of you know if the newer, or better pentax cameras (compared to the k100d) have better AF than the k100d? Can anyone comment if these pentax cameras compare with a Nikon or Sony?

I'm gonna try out my friend's Canon Rebel Xti soon too and I'll see how that goes, in terms of autofocus.

I really like the low light shooting capability the k100d has with my f1.4 50mm and image stabilization, but it's worthless if I can't focus...

Thanks in advance for the responses!

05-28-2008, 05:23 PM   #2
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I have upgraded from istDs to K20D. The focussing is waaaay faster now on all my lenses. Can't compare to anything else.
05-28-2008, 05:37 PM   #3
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I also have recently upgraded from K100D to K20D.
Every part of the camera is way faster from autofocus to writing to SD cards.
The relatively small difference in price ($600 in my case) was well worth it.
05-28-2008, 06:20 PM   #4
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I would definitely appreciate faster writing! The k100d is so slow - when I take many photos to stitch together, I have to wait for a long time after the 3rd or 4th shot. Annoying...

Has anyone compared the k20d AF to a nikon or sony?

Thanks

05-28-2008, 07:02 PM   #5
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Yes, the other brands are still often faster. But most of us here feel that the current-gen Pentaxes are fast enough. If all you care about is AF speed, you may think about another brand. I hear the new Sonies () have unbelievable AF speed.
05-28-2008, 08:40 PM   #6
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Right. I remember the alpha 100 was quite fast, so if the 300/350 are even faster that'd be quite nice.

Does anyone know how the sony IS compares to Pentax VR?
05-29-2008, 04:52 AM   #7
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I read somewhere that Sony may give a slightly higher stop advantage, but Pentax SR actually compensates in more directions - X Y and rotate as opposed to Sony's X Y only.

I've only used SR in my K100D, and the only way I can imagine achieving a significant improvement is with a tripod!
05-29-2008, 06:52 AM   #8
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When it comes to AF speed, the Olympus E-3 and SDM lenses is like a Ferrari. Hard to believe how fast it is.

05-29-2008, 03:00 PM   #9
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Geoff- Yeah - I also checked the tests on DPreview, and the pentax and sony systems seem similar. It's hard to test this sort of thing.

Flyer - I've been looking at some Olympus cameras, like the 510 and 410. The thing I don't like about them is that the 4/3 looks to be about 60% as much area as a pentax aps-c sensor. The noise levels I've seen on dpreview are quite high, probably as a result.

I wish more manufacturer's put in AF assist lamps in the body. It's annoying having to lug around a flash that you only use as a spot beam. The d50 has an AF assist beam, but it's a white, intrusive light. A nearly IR beam would be a lot better, and these are quite common on PS cameras.
05-29-2008, 03:48 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by eric_1 Quote

I wish more manufacturer's put in AF assist lamps in the body. It's annoying having to lug around a flash that you only use as a spot beam. The d50 has an AF assist beam, but it's a white, intrusive light. A nearly IR beam would be a lot better, and these are quite common on PS cameras.
The pop-up flash on the K10D/K20D can be used for focus assist when it is up.
05-29-2008, 04:35 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by eric_1 Quote
Right. I remember the alpha 100 was quite fast, so if the 300/350 are even faster that'd be quite nice.

Does anyone know how the sony IS compares to Pentax VR?
I just added a Sony A700 to my kit. The difference in AF, especially in low light, is very striking. There are many things about the K10D I like better but AF and tracking are not among them. The SR seems to be a little better on the Sony. The old Minolta zoom lenses work great so you can keep the cost down.

I'm going to keep both systems and use them for their strengths. I've got the A700 set up with 3 zooms and the K10D with 4 primes.

Ken
05-29-2008, 09:28 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by flyer Quote
The pop-up flash on the K10D/K20D can be used for focus assist when it is up.
Right, but there's no easy way to stop the flash from firing if you don't actually want to use it.
05-29-2008, 09:30 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by regken Quote
I just added a Sony A700 to my kit. The difference in AF, especially in low light, is very striking. There are many things about the K10D I like better but AF and tracking are not among them.

Ken
How does the A700 high iso performance compare with the k10d? On the reviews I've seen, the a200 had pretty blotchy noise reduction for the jpegs, but they don't say how much better you can do with raw processing.
05-30-2008, 03:04 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by eric_1 Quote
How does the A700 high iso performance compare with the k10d? On the reviews I've seen, the a200 had pretty blotchy noise reduction for the jpegs, but they don't say how much better you can do with raw processing.
I'd say the A700 has a 1 and 1/2 stop advantage over the K10D when using RAW which is the only way I shoot.

Ken
06-01-2008, 10:21 PM   #15
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Thanks for the info.

Too bad the a200 doesn't have as good high iso performance.
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