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04-12-2009, 06:02 AM   #136
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Last edited by woof; 04-12-2009 at 06:10 AM.
04-12-2009, 06:29 AM   #137
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I just updated my K20 a few minutes ago. My DA*55/1.4 is as slow now as it was yesterday.
I haven't tried any other lenses, but what I'm hearing is that improvement are at best incremental, and really relate more to hunting and lock on than the time it takes to get there.
Ive tried several lenses - if there is any improvement its very subtle. Same for SR.
QuoteQuote:
Unfortunately, to make a real improvement, they will need to go to stronger motors with more agressive gearing and dedicate a processor to AF control.
This is a hardware change that no amount of software tweaking is going to fix.
Certainly if they want to implement predictive continuous AF, a dedicated and much upgraded processor would be required, which would probably help in other areas too. Not sure how you would make existing SDM lenses faster though.
QuoteQuote:
The DA*55/1.4 is really a step backwards in the AF department. MY FA50/1.4 is at least 3 times faster than it, as is my DA70mm/LTD.
This is very dissapointing, because it tell me that Pentax isn't taking the performance concerns seriously, and are integrating technologies that are inferior to what they have been using in the past.
I'm also willing to believe that the K20 isn't able to fully integrate SDM technology and that a new camera body might do better, but I can't help but think that with the AF drive in the lens, the lazy AF speed is an integral part of the lens, and nothing will make it faster.
Who knows why they made this decision. Perhaps the optical design requires a less than optimal focus throw? Maybe they copied the internal design of the FA* 85 to keep costs down? Maybe these little micromotors are not up to the job?

QuoteQuote:
For my purposes, this is fine, I bought the 55/1.4 as a portrait lens, and for the most part, my subjects aren't trying to get away, so the speed isn't so much of a concern in my application, and any concerns I have are more than compensated for by the glass itself, which is way beyond superb.
However, for someone who wants a general purpose short telephoto, the AF speed might well be a huge dissapointment.

I'll give you a hint about why you don't get it in relation to my complaints about camera performance vs changing brands:
Photography (like most things in life) is all about compromise.
In my situation, I am compromising camera performance because Pentax lenses are enough better than competitors glass that I will tolerate the weak areas of the camera bodies.
Thats it in a nutshell is it not? Everything is a compromise.

QuoteQuote:
However, I also know that Pentax has the ability to build high performance equipment if they so choose, and I would like them to choose to make a better Pentax.
Maybe your wish will come true soon
QuoteQuote:
I am also familiar enough with the ways of internet forums to realize that no matter what they build, it will never be good enough for some people.
Having said that, there is ample room for them to improve things like AF speed, and I am willing to pay a premium for a body that has higher performance.
I also think that enough other people would be willing to do it, enough so that the camera would be profitable for them on it's own, as well as profitable for them in that it would attract more buyers of lower end models who base their purchase decisions on upgrade paths that they have no intention of taking.
I too would definately dust off the credit card for an upgraded body, provided it was a step up photographically and not just a big boys toy like the 5Dmk2. I sometimes wonder though how many other people would. You, Lance and myself would not help the profit line much.

And I can just imaging the complaining if the cost is substantially higher.
04-12-2009, 06:30 AM   #138
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QuoteOriginally posted by OregonJim Quote

edit: Wheatfield - I'm not in any way implying anything about YOUR skill - just wanted to make that clear as you seem to be a bit quick to jump on people as of late. I know you're frustrated about your 55/1.4.
I really have to wonder how many people on this forum have actually picked up and used a camera with a world class AF system?
I knew the DA 55/1.4 was slow, I tried it before I bought it. I made a decision to buy it for the glass, not the AF.
At the same time, it's pretty inexcusable that it is slower than Pentax's first generation AF from almost 25 years ago.
04-12-2009, 06:44 AM   #139
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I really have to wonder how many people on this forum have actually picked up and used a camera with a world class AF system?
Probably most have since they inevitably know a friend who has something else. What I've tried: D80, D200, D300, D700, 5D, A700.

04-12-2009, 07:23 AM   #140
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Same deer, different angle

Manuh,

I know that you said a headon shot at 300mm. This one is a quartering away shot of the same deer at 300mm, f5.6. I shoot using AF-S mode because, as stated elsewhere, the AF-C mode is not really good a predictive autofocus. That means I have to bacsically recompose each shot I take of a running dear, literally while panning the action. Do I miss some, yes. Does the camera and lens combination lock on when needed, more times than not. Is this shot perfect, no, but it is my shot, taken with my camera and I would feel the same way if it were a sony, canon, nikon, panasonic...... I use my tools within the limits of their design and accept the fact that in real world terms, that apply to everyone, every design is a compromise, everyone survives by compromise whether they believe it or not. I am a professional aircraft inspector. Every aircraft that actually flies is designed, manufactured, and operated on a compromise. So are our cameras.

To answer the poster above who wondered how many people posting to this thread actually have used a cameral with a world class autofocus system. I have. I cannot afford them. So, I use what I have and use them within their limits. I chose to post samples of the system working. I am sure everone here could post the same. Many of us could post just as many of the system showing it does not work. That would get us no where. Basically a stalemate. And that is where this thread has gone. It is Sunday, maybe we should take a rest and get back to taking pictures for the love of photography. I hear more deer calling my name.
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04-12-2009, 08:14 AM   #141
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Too true - and for sure if Pentax did improve it's autofocus it would be nigh on perfect - for me

I could post many photos of how well af-c works for me - its a thousand times better than I could achieve when shooting with manual lenses.

Below is the last in a sequence of af-c shooting at 230mm (345mm) coming straight into my frame

And at the bottom another - zero pre-focussing just let the camera track - me focussed on composition - and press shutter at right moment - the camera did the rest - no sweat
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04-12-2009, 08:22 AM   #142
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I really have to wonder how many people on this forum have actually picked up and used a camera with a world class AF system?
I knew the DA 55/1.4 was slow, I tried it before I bought it. I made a decision to buy it for the glass, not the AF.
At the same time, it's pretty inexcusable that it is slower than Pentax's first generation AF from almost 25 years ago.
I have. I shot my My cousins' wedding with his 30D.(This was before I got my D-SLR). I even compared his to mine and I knew it focused better in low light. But I still love my K10D.(We did a wedding together recently).
04-12-2009, 04:57 PM   #143
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QuoteOriginally posted by CharlieO Quote
I use my tools within the limits of their design
I like the challenge too. I managed to do good action shots on my FZ8 (P&S with a superzoom) and it's much more difficult than with any Pentax DSLR due to the LCD lag inherent to this category of camera. Of course my success rate was much lower. You can also achieve some good action shots with manual focus but a good AF and fast fps rate will bring home much more keepers.

Now, as I said the Pentax problem is relative to the competition:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-news-rumors/25521-magazine-review-...good-info.html

04-13-2009, 02:28 PM   #144
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QuoteOriginally posted by ManuH Quote
You can also achieve some good action shots with manual focus but a good AF and fast fps rate will bring home much more keepers.
I think there are two different definitions for the term 'keepers':

1.) A good photo which turned out exactly the way you planned it, or

2.) A good photo which was captured more or less accidentally

Both can be considered 'keepers', but I think many of the AF arguments are flawed because different people assign different meanings to the word 'keepers'.
04-13-2009, 04:25 PM   #145
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I have only had my K20d for a few weeks and am delighted with it. I take a lot of photos of aircraft, front on and side on, including fast movers (f16, Mirage, Rafale, etc) and helicopters and am very happy with the speed of the autofocus. I haven't had a chance to see if there is any difference after updating the firmware but I am heartened by some of the feedback I have read in various forums.

I researched long and hard before making this purchasing decision as the minister of war and finance had to be convinced we were going to get real value for our outlay. I defy anyone to get a better feature set from any other camera in this price bracket.

I only joined this forum a short while ago in order to further my knowledge of my camera and photography in general and am surprised at the level of nastiness being directed between people of such closely shared interests. Most people reading this forum would embrace debate regarding the characteristics of this camera range but the quality of the debate is erroded by personal attacks/name calling/repitition of points.

As one contributer says at the bottom of each of his many posts, "Say something positive for a change. It won't hurt".
04-13-2009, 06:58 PM   #146
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QuoteOriginally posted by Buffomarinus Quote
I have only had my K20d for a few weeks and am delighted with it. I take a lot of photos of aircraft, front on and side on, including fast movers (f16, Mirage, Rafale, etc) and helicopters and am very happy with the speed of the autofocus. I haven't had a chance to see if there is any difference after updating the firmware but I am heartened by some of the feedback I have read in various forums.

I researched long and hard before making this purchasing decision as the minister of war and finance had to be convinced we were going to get real value for our outlay. I defy anyone to get a better feature set from any other camera in this price bracket.

I only joined this forum a short while ago in order to further my knowledge of my camera and photography in general and am surprised at the level of nastiness being directed between people of such closely shared interests. Most people reading this forum would embrace debate regarding the characteristics of this camera range but the quality of the debate is erroded by personal attacks/name calling/repitition of points.

As one contributer says at the bottom of each of his many posts, "Say something positive for a change. It won't hurt".

You are so right! But don't let the negativity deter you from posting.

There are a lot of people who are here to help; myself included.

Please post any questions you may have about anything Pentax, old or new and you will be suprised at the number of POSITIVE responses you get vs. negative.

Welcome to the Forum!

My name is Robert.
04-13-2009, 07:13 PM   #147
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QuoteOriginally posted by res3567 Quote
Please post any questions you may have about anything Pentax, old or new and you will be suprised at the number of POSITIVE responses you get vs. negative.

Welcome to the Forum!

My name is Robert.
Yup, this is 100% true. What you'll find is that there are a small handful (maybe 3-4) topics that will always degrade, and this just happens to be one of them. It doesn't matter how innocent an "AF" thread starts out it never stays that way

Welcome to the forum, where 99% of the time we all coexist VERY happily


John
04-13-2009, 07:24 PM   #148
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I guess we just have to make do with what we've got.

On the other hand, if one's gear is not measuring up to expectations, the recent price increases should help to fund an alternative system.



04-13-2009, 07:44 PM   #149
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Wow! I love the P-51D Mustang! A superemely beutifull aircraft and a legendary war bird. What eqiupment did you use?
04-13-2009, 08:37 PM   #150
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QuoteOriginally posted by res3567 Quote
Wow! I love the P-51D Mustang! A superemely beutifull aircraft and a legendary war bird. What eqiupment did you use?
I used a Pentax K10D with the Pentax FA 80-320mm lens. AF-C.

I am presently trying to find myself in the jump seat of one of these, but I'll need a LOT of luck.
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