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09-28-2015, 01:55 AM   #1
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Question to forum members about one small inovation on Pentax DSLR cameras

I don't have enough technical knowledge but for a long time I am thinking why there is no DSLR camera on market with some kind of live histogram in OVF.
It shouldn't be too complicated to get live data from sensor, bigger problem is probably to display those data in OVF.
It could be complicated and/or impractical to have traditional histogram in OVF display but simplified single dimension histogram like current horizon line display in OVF could be very functional.
So it could be the line of dots with flashing dots at the beginning an at the end to show clipping.
Have you ever thinking of something similar?
Could it be usefull?


Last edited by banep; 09-28-2015 at 02:06 AM.
09-28-2015, 02:30 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by banep Quote
I don't have enough technical knowledge but for a long time I am thinking why there is no DSLR camera on market with some kind of live histogram in OVF.
It shouldn't be too complicated to get live data from sensor, bigger problem is probably to display those data in OVF.
It could be complicated and/or impractical to have traditional histogram in OVF display but simplified single dimension histogram like current horizon line display in OVF could be very functional.
So it could be the line of dots with flashing dots at the beginning an at the end to show clipping.
Have you ever thinking of something similar?
Could it be usefull?
You can't get data from the sensor at the same time as the mirror is down and you're looking through the OVF You can, however, get a reading from the dedicated light meter which is what you already see. With that said, there are plenty of improvements that Pentax could make to their viewfinder overlays...

I do believe that Sony's a7 series supports a live histogram in the VF, but I could be remembering incorrectly. In any case it wouldn't be perfectly accurate since LV shutter speed is limited by the viewfinder framerate.

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09-28-2015, 04:56 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
You can't get data from the sensor at the same time as the mirror is down and you're looking through the OVF You can, however, get a reading from the dedicated light meter which is what you already see. With that said, there are plenty of improvements that Pentax could make to their viewfinder overlays...

I do believe that Sony's a7 series supports a live histogram in the VF, but I could be remembering incorrectly. In any case it wouldn't be perfectly accurate since LV shutter speed is limited by the viewfinder framerate.
Thank you for your explanation. Yes every Sony camera from RX100m3 to A7Rm2 supports live histogram in a viewfinder. That is one of the reasons why I would like to have some tool in my Pentax DSLR viewfinder for clipping warnings (which Sony also doesn't have in it's live histogram display). With my Pentax DSLR I'm usually guessing (based on expirience) maximum exposure for which clipping could be recovered from a raw file. But I'm not always successful in that guessing because uncontrolled light could have zillion variations. Yes, sophisticated light metering system like that in K3 could have enough information for "intelligent" clipping warning, actually if light metering system is the source of information in theory I need only one numeric information: percentage of frame area which can't be recovered from raw file. That could be enough information for my brain to separate intentional from unintentional clipping while watching the scene through OVF. Do you think it's technically possible to get that on OVF from metering system only?
If it is not, other a little bit clumsy approach could be to use digital preview informations (which includes histogram) not only on screen but in a viewfinder too. Let me explain: my raw button is typically configured for digital preview. I would like to have configuration option in menus to select where to display digital preview: screen or ovf. When ovf is selected after pressing the raw button and after a short blackout I will have my histogram informations with clipping warnings at the bottom line of OVF while watching through the lens. I understand that it's not live histogram but it could be very usefull (except for long exposures) to quickly check exposure before pressing the shutter.

Last edited by banep; 09-28-2015 at 05:07 AM.
09-28-2015, 06:46 AM   #4
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IMO the easiest approach is to use spot meter on highlight and apply exposure compensation (up to +2 stops depending on how light the highlight is) to avoid clipped highlight.
Using camera with OVF has a different workflow compared to camera with EVF.

09-28-2015, 09:42 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fogel70 Quote
IMO the easiest approach is to use spot meter on highlight and apply exposure compensation (up to +2 stops depending on how light the highlight is) to avoid clipped highlight.
Using camera with OVF has a different workflow compared to camera with EVF.
Thank you, it's a good advice and very logical because of a typical dynamic range of APS-C cameras. Usually, I am not totaly avoiding clipping, but want to controll exact amount of clipped area and I think that histogram is much better tool for that kind of exposure control. Yes, I know the difference between two workflows because I'm using OVF cameras for a very long time and EVF for two years. I hate EVF for many reasons but live histogram data in a viewfinder is simply brilliant option. At least for me.

Last edited by banep; 09-28-2015 at 09:53 AM.
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