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09-30-2016, 11:47 AM   #1
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Making a scene?

Ok, so I was looking at the comparison grid for Pentax cameras on this fine site, and compared K-70, K-3 and K-3 II just for fun (about my price range). I noticed something I've never thought about before - the ones in the "Weather Sealed" category (in this case K-70) differed from the ones in the "Advanced" category (K-3 and K-3 II) in many ways but most obvious was the lack of "Scene Modes". My K-r has these things but I've never messed with them much. I just take pictures and cross my fingers.

So, assuming a person has no interest in scenes and probably will never use them, is that a reason NOT to get a camera that has them available? In other words, if I simply don't use the scene mode, it is just a regular camera? BTW I do understand that a K-3 II is different in many other ways from the K-70 but the topic here is scenes (or lack thereof) and whether the fact that the camera has them (or not) affects the IQ. The KAF4 compatibility is irrelevant to me for the purposes of this question.

09-30-2016, 12:01 PM - 1 Like   #2
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The Scene modes are, AFAIK, just user-selectable behaviours that the camera automatically switches between in Auto or Program with the Auto line.
09-30-2016, 12:08 PM - 2 Likes   #3
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The reason to avoid a product that has an unwanted feature is:
* The feature adds cost to the product
* The feature detracts from the desired functionality
* The feature is dangerous

In this case, the "Scene Modes" feature doesn't seem to add cost, inconvenience, or danger so it seems one can ignore it and focus on what the product does have (relative to the features competing products do have).

The one minor side issue is: although you may not ever use "Scene Modes" perhaps it might be useful to someone who might use your camera (friend, relative, or that nice person helping you get a picture with you in it).
09-30-2016, 01:15 PM - 2 Likes   #4
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User Modes 1, 2...etc, are nothing more than Scene Modes without names awaiting your customized assignments. (Without assigned names, you'll quickly forget what you customized 'em to accomplish anyway.)

You could shoot in P-mode and have the equivalent of the presumed best normal exposure. A knowledgeable photographer would likely make some adjustments to the P-mode solution depending on the scene. For instance, bumping shutter speed for action shots or stopping down for more DOF and making a color bias adjustment in a landscape situation or proper use of fill flash. They're nothing more than logical pre-set adjustments to the Program Mode. Scene Modes may also prevent making certain changes inconsistent with a specific scene - a good thing.

The manuals offer a tabular listing of each Scene Mode's adjustments to the presumed 'normal' exposure'. Review those and you'll likely agree that the adjustments make sense -- might even learn a trick or two. However, if you're knowledgeable enough to assess those changes you'll likely be experienced enough to instinctively make the changes as you stage the shot anyway. Personally, I have confidence in the intent of the Scene Modes -- I've just never remembered to use 'em!

Scene Modes are kind'a like spell checkers and pocket calculators; they work fine when used intelligently but if you didn't grow up depending on 'em they seem superfluous and clutter up the Mode Dial and Menu.

09-30-2016, 02:13 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
The one minor side issue is: although you may not ever use "Scene Modes" perhaps it might be useful to someone who might use your camera (friend, relative, or that nice person helping you get a picture with you in it).
Yup, if I were handing this thing to my sister I might agree, good point.
09-30-2016, 03:48 PM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by pacerr Quote
The manuals offer a tabular listing of each Scene Mode's adjustments to the presumed 'normal' exposure'. Review those and you'll likely agree that the adjustments make sense -- might even learn a trick or two.
QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
although you may not ever use "Scene Modes" perhaps it might be useful to someone who might use your camera
Both really good points. I used Scene modes a lot when I got my first DSLR, a K100D Super. The main ones like Landscape, Portrait and Night Scene Portrait were built in to the mode dial, like on a P&S. The scene modes generally worked well, although they sometimes overdid the saturation and brightness to my taste. And I could hand the camera to someone else and dial in Portrait or whatever and it was pretty foolproof.

Since I got more experienced, and shoot in RAW, and have 3 customisable user modes, I don't miss the Scenes, except that I will never be in another photo taken with my camera! (My partner hates my K-3: too heavy and back button AF defeats her, before we even get to modes.) If I picked up a K100D Super now, I'd think the Scene modes were a waste of dial space that could be better devoted to TAV, X and user modes.

Just permit me a moment off-topic, with some unsolicited advice: unless you really really want a flippy screen and the other extras that the K-70 has, or the lighter weight, get a K-3 or K3ii. With the flagship models you won't look back. Things that don't really show in the comparison tables like durablility, quiet shutter and far superior dust removal make for a much better ownership and user experience overall, especially if you are likely to keep the camera for upwards of 3 years. (I'm comparing K-30 and K-3.)
09-30-2016, 09:14 PM - 1 Like   #7
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I own a K-70 but I have never used these settings. When I turn to SCN on the dial and I have the following choices I lament that the position is not U4 for another program.

I have the following if I choose to use them.
Portrait
Landscape
Macro
Moving Object
Night scene portrait
Sunset
Blue Sky
Forest
Night Scene
Night Scene HDR
Night Snap
Food
Pet
Kids
Surf & Snow
Backlight Silhouette
Candlelight
Stage Lighting
Museum

Shoot what a waste of a dial position for my opinion. Whatever gets you the shot, I don't prefer these though.

Last edited by SeaRefractor; 09-30-2016 at 09:24 PM.
09-30-2016, 09:31 PM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by SeaRefractor Quote
I own a K-70 but I have never used these settings. When I turn to SCN on the dial and I have the following choices I lament that the position is not U4 for another program.
.....
I do use SCN somewhat on my Q-7, because I've encountered situations when I wanted quick access to the HDR and CandleLight scenes, but I don't remember ever using it on my K-30.

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