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07-29-2008, 08:13 AM   #1
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K20D custom settings?

i just got the K20D last Sunday. Still reading the manual.
Anyone can share the tip/settings with me?
Thx in advance.

07-29-2008, 10:31 AM   #2
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Not sure what your question is. Are you asking what the custom setting is for, or what setting we use it for?

The manual is OK, but IMHO, the Magic Lantern book for this camera is much better. Available on ebay for around $12.
07-29-2008, 11:33 AM   #3
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K20D comes with "Bright" as the default setting. Most people do not like the Bright setting because the colors are too saturated. I use the "Natural" setting. I don't have the camera in front of me but off the top of my head to change the settings, hit the Fn button. Then hit the OK button. Then you can use the left and right arrows to change between the "Bright", "Natural", "landscape", "Portrait", and 'B&W" modes. Change it to "Natural" and leave it there. You can further fine tune the settings by using the down arrow and change the following:

Saturation
Hue,
Contrast
Sharpness

I leave all of the above on default. I also shoot in Av mode with ISO set on automatic between 100 to 800. I do fidel with WB a lot to get the best colors and I always shoot in RAW.

Hope this helps.
07-29-2008, 12:15 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by yipchunyu Quote
i just got the K20D last Sunday. Still reading the manual.
Anyone can share the tip/settings with me?
Thx in advance.
Shoot raw, auto white balance, get your exposures right. Worry about everything else in post.

08-04-2008, 07:51 PM   #5
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One advice from this page is use the AF button to focus instead of using the shutter? Why?

Pentax K20D tips & tricks for RAW shooters
08-04-2008, 08:56 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by yipchunyu Quote
One advice from this page is use the AF button to focus instead of using the shutter? Why?

Pentax K20D tips & tricks for RAW shooters
Some good tips there. But the author of that site answers your question. He's what he (or she?) says:

QuoteQuote:
What I suggest you try is to set the AF button on the back of your camera to control auto focus, instead of the traditional half-press of the shutter release. .. (T)he main reason is that you can choose your focus point, press the AF button to activate AF, then move on to re-framing and exposure with complete confidence that your focus will stay the way you want it for as long as you want it there, including from one shot to the next.
I'm not sure this is as clear as it could be, but the basic idea is this: Exposure and focus are not the same thing, so you should control them separately. You are taking a picture of, say, a child standing by a lake on a sunny day. You compose the shot so the child is a bit to the right of the photo - so much of the lake is in the center. You want to focus on the child, of course, but you want to expose for the lake or the sky, so you don't blow out those highlights. If you've got the exposure and focus both tied to the shutter button, getting exactly what you want MAY be difficult. (This author thinks it will be and some photographers agree.)

Perhaps it's a brilliant idea, but it's never clicked with me. I think it makes more sense if you don't do a lot of fast shooting. Often I have to take one shot after another in fairly rapid succession and I just barely have time to compose shots and hit the shutter - certainly do NOT have time to compose shots, hit autofocus button to focus and then hit shutter separately to take photo.

Another problem I have with this is that I find the autofocus button awkwardly placed. For me, the button is a bit hard to find when I'm not looking right at it, which I usually am not because I'm looking through the finder to compose the shot. And using the autofocus button can be done only if you are actually holding the camera by cradling the lens in your LEFT hand. I can't use the autofocus button if I am trying to hold the camera in my right hand alone. And while I do in fact shoot with both hands 99.3% of the time, and while my left hand is in fact usually under the lens, I dunno, I find myself losing touch with the autofocus button quickly. It's quite possible that I just have not stuck with it long enough.

Final problem with using the autofocus button - and this one's pretty close to being fatal: The battery grip for the K10D/K20D doesn't HAVE an autofocus button for use when the camera's in portrait orientation. Since getting good habits is very important if you're going to become good at using this button, you're going to want to learn to use it pretty much all the time. But if you like the grip, well, you're not going to be able to hold the camera by the bottom when you turn it sideways, because you won't have the autofocus button that you're used to.

So, it might be a great idea to separate autofocus from shooting. And there's no harm in giving it a try. If you do, try it for at least a week - I think it takes some getting used to. But it seems to be an acquired preference.

I might add one last point. The author of the web page suggests that there are problems with linking autofocus and exposure. Maybe, but I don't in fact encounter them very often. I generally keep the camera on center-spot focus. If the focal point of the shot is NOT in the middle of the frame, I lock focus (by depressing the shutter button half way) and recompose. And if the area on which I want to meter is not the same as the area on which I want to focus, I meter first, hit AE-L to lock the exposure, THEN hit the shutter. But I don't need to distinguish exposure from focus like this in more than twenty percent of my shots, if that often. And if I'm shooting in a hurry, it's more important to me to get the focus exactly right than the exposure. I can adjust in post for exposure (assuming the camera doesn't completely fail me here!) but I can't focus in post. So to me, it makes much better sense to keep focus tied to the shutter and detach exposure - if you really like the idea of having to do both of these things separately.

My two cents.

Will
08-05-2008, 07:43 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by WMBP Quote
Some good tips there. But the author of that site answers your question. He's what he (or she?) says:

I'm not sure this is as clear as it could be, but the basic idea is this: Exposure and focus are not the same thing, so you should control them separately. You are taking a picture of, say, a child standing by a lake on a sunny day. You compose the shot so the child is a bit to the right of the photo - so much of the lake is in the center. You want to focus on the child, of course, but you want to expose for the lake or the sky, so you don't blow out those highlights. If you've got the exposure and focus both tied to the shutter button, getting exactly what you want MAY be difficult. (This author thinks it will be and some photographers agree.)

Perhaps it's a brilliant idea, but it's never clicked with me. I think it makes more sense if you don't do a lot of fast shooting. Often I have to take one shot after another in fairly rapid succession and I just barely have time to compose shots and hit the shutter - certainly do NOT have time to compose shots, hit autofocus button to focus and then hit shutter separately to take photo.

Another problem I have with this is that I find the autofocus button awkwardly placed. For me, the button is a bit hard to find when I'm not looking right at it, which I usually am not because I'm looking through the finder to compose the shot. And using the autofocus button can be done only if you are actually holding the camera by cradling the lens in your LEFT hand. I can't use the autofocus button if I am trying to hold the camera in my right hand alone. And while I do in fact shoot with both hands 99.3% of the time, and while my left hand is in fact usually under the lens, I dunno, I find myself losing touch with the autofocus button quickly. It's quite possible that I just have not stuck with it long enough.

Final problem with using the autofocus button - and this one's pretty close to being fatal: The battery grip for the K10D/K20D doesn't HAVE an autofocus button for use when the camera's in portrait orientation. Since getting good habits is very important if you're going to become good at using this button, you're going to want to learn to use it pretty much all the time. But if you like the grip, well, you're not going to be able to hold the camera by the bottom when you turn it sideways, because you won't have the autofocus button that you're used to.

So, it might be a great idea to separate autofocus from shooting. And there's no harm in giving it a try. If you do, try it for at least a week - I think it takes some getting used to. But it seems to be an acquired preference.

I might add one last point. The author of the web page suggests that there are problems with linking autofocus and exposure. Maybe, but I don't in fact encounter them very often. I generally keep the camera on center-spot focus. If the focal point of the shot is NOT in the middle of the frame, I lock focus (by depressing the shutter button half way) and recompose. And if the area on which I want to meter is not the same as the area on which I want to focus, I meter first, hit AE-L to lock the exposure, THEN hit the shutter. But I don't need to distinguish exposure from focus like this in more than twenty percent of my shots, if that often. And if I'm shooting in a hurry, it's more important to me to get the focus exactly right than the exposure. I can adjust in post for exposure (assuming the camera doesn't completely fail me here!) but I can't focus in post. So to me, it makes much better sense to keep focus tied to the shutter and detach exposure - if you really like the idea of having to do both of these things separately.

My two cents.

Will
Hi Will,
Thx a lot for your clear explanation. Since my first language is not English and so it's a little bit confuse to me. It's better after reading your explanation.
More, I found some info from Jp shooters. They highly recommend to use
vibrant as the color tone. ANd use fine-sharpness +4 (esp shoot with 6M).
Any comment?
08-05-2008, 08:42 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by yipchunyu Quote
Hi Will,
Thx a lot for your clear explanation. Since my first language is not English and so it's a little bit confuse to me. It's better after reading your explanation.
You're welcome. Happy to be helpful.


QuoteQuote:
More, I found some info from Jp shooters. They highly recommend to use
vibrant as the color tone. ANd use fine-sharpness +4 (esp shoot with 6M).
Any comment?
I shoot raw so these settings don't matter to me.

If you don't shoot raw, then to some extent these are matters of personal taste and I would recommend that you experiment.

However, if you don't shoot raw, there may be other things to consider. If you want to edit your photos on the computer later on, then you should remember that, when you change things aggressively in the camera, you may limit what you can do later. If I shot jpeg, I'd be using the most neutral settings I could find, in order to give myself the greatest number of options later on.

On the other hand, if you DON'T want to edit your photos on the computer - if you want the camera itself to produce images that are usable immediately - then you really should experiment with the settings and see what you like. I would personally still suggest being conservative. It's easier to sharpen a slightly soft image in post-processing than it is to unsharpen an image that's been over-sharpened. But it's up to you.

Will

08-05-2008, 06:53 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by yipchunyu Quote
One advice from this page is use the AF button to focus instead of using the shutter? Why?

Pentax K20D tips & tricks for RAW shooters
Personal preference is all it comes down to.

But if you have any manual lenses i'd suggest you give "Catch in Focus" in the custom functions a try, i like it.

Last edited by morfic; 08-05-2008 at 07:04 PM.
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