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05-11-2009, 06:12 PM   #16
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[QUOTE=dafiryde;591588]
QuoteOriginally posted by kkoether Quote
I've seen quite a few posts from people saying Pentax DSLR's aren't really suited to fast action situations

I have read that so many times on this forum , if i had a dollar for every one, i would be the richest man on earth.
last week i had the privilidge to spend a few days with my daughter in orlando, of all the places, she wanted to go , was sea world, as we were watching the whale and dolphin show and i having no clue when they were going to jump out of the water and where, waited paciently and as i saw some movement , i would put the camera to my eye and snap.
at the end of the day , 99.9% of those taken with just pointing and shooting, was in focus, i was impressed, and satisified. and right there and then i realised, he who complains of this autofocus speed, is just looking for an excuse to buy canon or nikon, cause personally, there really was not much time between seeing where there was going to jump, putting the camera up to my eye and pressing the shutter, and with the results i got, wow pentax is fast.
Hail to Shamu
a life long impression, as i returned the rental in miami, and was on the bus going to the airport, there was a little girl, about 3 years old singing,, bum,bum, shamu, shamu
Yes I remember back in 1981 when I bought my ME Super people kept telling me then that Pentax was on the way out of business. I've stuck with Pentax all these years and have no ambition to change now.


Last edited by kkoether; 05-11-2009 at 06:12 PM. Reason: remove smiley
05-11-2009, 06:16 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arpe Quote
Exactly. You can do action shots with Pentax, I do most weekends. It's just that probably (as I haven't actually experienced it myself as I haven't tried them) you could do better with other systems.
Do yourself a favor and don't try them. I did and see where it got me!

(That aside, I still think Pentax is the best bang for the buck for most people... I do miss my K20D at times, but can't justify the expense of maintaining two systems so have to go with the one that works best for me.)
05-11-2009, 06:38 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by kkoether Quote
I've seen quite a few posts from people saying Pentax DSLR's aren't really suited to fast action situations

I have read that so many times on this forum , if i had a dollar for every one, i would be the richest man on earth.
last week i had the privilidge to spend a few days with my daughter in orlando, of all the places, she wanted to go , was sea world, as we were watching the whale and dolphin show and i having no clue when they were going to jump out of the water and where, waited paciently and as i saw some movement , i would put the camera to my eye and snap.
at the end of the day , 99.9% of those taken with just pointing and shooting, was in focus, i was impressed, and satisified. and right there and then i realised, he who complains of this autofocus speed, is just looking for an excuse to buy canon or nikon, cause personally, there really was not much time between seeing where there was going to jump, putting the camera up to my eye and pressing the shutter, and with the results i got, wow pentax is fast.
Hail to Shamu
a life long impression, as i returned the rental in miami, and was on the bus going to the airport, there was a little girl, about 3 years old singing,, bum,bum, shamu, shamu
Ummmm, I have a whole series of nicely exposed and focused shots from the Vancouver aquarium of jumping dolphins that I shot with a Pentax 6x7.
Sorry to burst your bubble.
05-11-2009, 10:29 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Ummmm, I have a whole series of nicely exposed and focused shots from the Vancouver aquarium of jumping dolphins that I shot with a Pentax 6x7.
Sorry to burst your bubble.
to be honest i was quite satisfied with the out come, a couple of weeks before that , i had thawed out my credit card from the freezer, and was going all out on a nikon D90 system, and Jim C from steve's forum stepped in and asked me to remove the uv filter and put on the lens shade, by doing that, it made a whole lot of difference on my autofocus system, both indoors and out doors. an sea world was its test.

Dave

05-12-2009, 10:12 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by dafiryde Quote
to be honest i was quite satisfied with the out come, a couple of weeks before that , i had thawed out my credit card from the freezer, and was going all out on a nikon D90 system, and Jim C from steve's forum stepped in and asked me to remove the uv filter and put on the lens shade, by doing that, it made a whole lot of difference on my autofocus system, both indoors and out doors. an sea world was its test.

Dave
I see a lot of "examples" here where people take pictures that are a test of their tracking ability, not a test of the AF, but they falsely conclude that the AF is fast enough based on the fact it can lock onto something whose distance from the camera isn't changing, it's just moving sideways really fast.
This is why I mentioned my experience at the aquarium with my 6x7. It isn't noted for being an especially fast handling camera, and it is manual focus.
And yet, it was able to capture jumping dolphins with ease.
My conclusion is that this would be a false test of an AF system.
05-12-2009, 10:53 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I see a lot of "examples" here where people take pictures that are a test of their tracking ability, not a test of the AF, but they falsely conclude that the AF is fast enough based on the fact it can lock onto something whose distance from the camera isn't changing, it's just moving sideways really fast.
This is why I mentioned my experience at the aquarium with my 6x7. It isn't noted for being an especially fast handling camera, and it is manual focus.
And yet, it was able to capture jumping dolphins with ease.
My conclusion is that this would be a false test of an AF system.

Perhaps that is another way of saying that the fastest autofocus system is not essential to taking good action photos.
05-12-2009, 11:51 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by GeneV Quote
Perhaps that is another way of saying that the fastest autofocus system is not essential to taking good action photos.
Definitely. But it does make it easier! (Especially with unpredictable subjects where you can't rely on it being at point X at some given time...)

Haven't had a chance to read up on the K-7 yet -- are there any rumors about changes in its AF system? The K20D was a near-perfect camera in all other aspects.

Last edited by pingflood; 05-12-2009 at 12:08 PM.
05-12-2009, 11:58 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by pingflood Quote
Definitely. But it does make it easier! (Especially with unpredictable subjects where you can't rely on it being at point X at some given time...)
Say, you want to shoot a mole.



05-12-2009, 03:51 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I see a lot of "examples" here where people take pictures that are a test of their tracking ability, not a test of the AF, but they falsely conclude that the AF is fast enough based on the fact it can lock onto something whose distance from the camera isn't changing, it's just moving sideways really fast.
This is why I mentioned my experience at the aquarium with my 6x7. It isn't noted for being an especially fast handling camera, and it is manual focus.
And yet, it was able to capture jumping dolphins with ease.
My conclusion is that this would be a false test of an AF system.
'this any better?

zlin-62-2-2

or perhaps it's too far away (and the ratio between distnaces of focus the af has to track between is too near to 1).

how 'bout this

web-imgp1043.pef

"low light", too.

still a bit far, i admit (i am not very courageous)

web-imgp1088.pef

now it hardly gets much closer than this (except with a fisheye, in a slow hairpin, assuming you can convince the entire comitee of officials present to let you shoot there). it's also a nice shot to ilustrate my lame inability to properly track, as the action was so fast i got the nose blurred and the back sharp (common issue when panning from such a difficult position).

some really low light af (don't judge only the exposure data, i was shamelessly underexposing to get a decent shutter speed for the water)

hipo, in his natural habitat

that should cover weather-sealed af (and no, an wr body with a non-wr lens is not pointless, this was shot with the da 50-200, and i gave up when i realized, as they say, that i had water in places i hadn't known i had to begin with, sure i would have liked the da*, but we can't haveit all, everytime..).

web-sg104257

how about.. oh, wait, that's not fair, i'm cheating. this was shot with a nikon..
just pulling your leg, was shot with an m42 lens, older than myself. af is a bit slow on it with the safox VIII, so i had to prefocus and such. terrible of me to try such a dirty miss-representation.

joke aside, my point is that all tests are flawed. as long as enough people believe that the pentax af is bad, it is (at the very least for those people, but not only for them). and please don't jump at me about how well it "tracks", and how smart, the topic was about how slow it handles fast moving subject, inteligence of tracking is a different (and slimyer) can of worms.

the only test which is not flawed, the ultimate test, is people who claim to need this and that feature to handle the camera for what they need, and decide if it works for them or not. talking about what pentax could do to make those people happy is another (rather complicated) subject, but if talking about tests, that's it, that's the test. want objective tests? i love objective tests, but how many objective photographers/customers are there (i met not one).

so i guess, the moral to this story, what i am getting at, is that people who are happy and able to use this system for what they need are not those to test it for the flaws which the people who complain about it found, they will invariably find that it works fine, because, no, there is no common ground, it is so different how each of us uses their camera. the flipside to this is that telling people that the current pentax AF is good or bad is simply wrong, it cannot be either apriori, for some will be good, for others not, you need to decide that for yourself, if af is important for you. this is why i believe "who says you can't shoot fast action $%#" threads are completely pointless, and i feel the same about "pentax need to do something about the af or i will %$^$". the problem is that i cannot blame either side, as long as one side keeps at it, if the other stops, the general impression will be given by the "winning" side. so it's sort of like voting (i live it up to you to decide how much sense that makes, and how rational it seems).

--
nanok_can't_we_all_just_get_along...
05-12-2009, 06:09 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by nanok Quote
'this any better?

zlin-62-2-2

or perhaps it's too far away (and the ratio between distnaces of focus the af has to track between is too near to 1).

how 'bout this

web-imgp1043.pef

"low light", too.

still a bit far, i admit (i am not very courageous)

web-imgp1088.pef

now it hardly gets much closer than this (except with a fisheye, in a slow hairpin, assuming you can convince the entire comitee of officials present to let you shoot there). it's also a nice shot to ilustrate my lame inability to properly track, as the action was so fast i got the nose blurred and the back sharp (common issue when panning from such a difficult position).

some really low light af (don't judge only the exposure data, i was shamelessly underexposing to get a decent shutter speed for the water)

hipo, in his natural habitat

that should cover weather-sealed af (and no, an wr body with a non-wr lens is not pointless, this was shot with the da 50-200, and i gave up when i realized, as they say, that i had water in places i hadn't known i had to begin with, sure i would have liked the da*, but we can't haveit all, everytime..).

web-sg104257

how about.. oh, wait, that's not fair, i'm cheating. this was shot with a nikon..
just pulling your leg, was shot with an m42 lens, older than myself. af is a bit slow on it with the safox VIII, so i had to prefocus and such. terrible of me to try such a dirty miss-representation.

joke aside, my point is that all tests are flawed. as long as enough people believe that the pentax af is bad, it is (at the very least for those people, but not only for them). and please don't jump at me about how well it "tracks", and how smart, the topic was about how slow it handles fast moving subject, inteligence of tracking is a different (and slimyer) can of worms.

the only test which is not flawed, the ultimate test, is people who claim to need this and that feature to handle the camera for what they need, and decide if it works for them or not. talking about what pentax could do to make those people happy is another (rather complicated) subject, but if talking about tests, that's it, that's the test. want objective tests? i love objective tests, but how many objective photographers/customers are there (i met not one).

so i guess, the moral to this story, what i am getting at, is that people who are happy and able to use this system for what they need are not those to test it for the flaws which the people who complain about it found, they will invariably find that it works fine, because, no, there is no common ground, it is so different how each of us uses their camera. the flipside to this is that telling people that the current pentax AF is good or bad is simply wrong, it cannot be either apriori, for some will be good, for others not, you need to decide that for yourself, if af is important for you. this is why i believe "who says you can't shoot fast action $%#" threads are completely pointless, and i feel the same about "pentax need to do something about the af or i will %$^$". the problem is that i cannot blame either side, as long as one side keeps at it, if the other stops, the general impression will be given by the "winning" side. so it's sort of like voting (i live it up to you to decide how much sense that makes, and how rational it seems).

--
nanok_can't_we_all_just_get_along...
The nice thing about shooting pictures of cars on a race track is that after the first couple go by, you can prefocus on what you've decided is the best spot and take a picture when the car enters the zone.
Where it gets dicey, and becomes a real test of the technology is when you don't have the luxury of being able to predict where the best shot will be, and have to depend on the camera to be fast enough to keep up.
This is where Pentax tends to have it's shorts pulled over it's head.
A good test of an AF system is to stand beside a highway and see if the camera will track a car coming at you at 100kph. It'll do it for a while, but at some point, as the car gets closer, the AF will fail to keep up.

Now to be sure, it's not all about AF speed, for me it's more about responsiveness. A camera that locks on faster is a more responsive camera, and that becomes a real pleasure to use, whether what you are shooting tests the system's limits or not.
05-12-2009, 07:45 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I see a lot of "examples" here where people take pictures that are a test of their tracking ability, not a test of the AF, but they falsely conclude that the AF is fast enough based on the fact it can lock onto something whose distance from the camera isn't changing, it's just moving sideways really fast.
This is why I mentioned my experience at the aquarium with my 6x7. It isn't noted for being an especially fast handling camera, and it is manual focus.
And yet, it was able to capture jumping dolphins with ease.
My conclusion is that this would be a false test of an AF system.
so would you say its safe to say that i should go for the nikon D90 or the canon 50D

Dave
05-12-2009, 08:03 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by dafiryde Quote
so would you say its safe to say that i should go for the nikon D90 or the canon 50D

Dave
If what you are using now isn't cutting it, or is sufficiently holding you back in what you want to do, then you should be exploring your options, yes.
Every system will hold you back in some fashion or another though. For myself, I like Pentax glass enough that the quibbles I have about camera responsiveness aren't a big enough deal to chase me into another camera system.
05-12-2009, 08:24 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by dafiryde Quote
so would you say its safe to say that i should go for the nikon D90 or the canon 50D

Dave
Not to muddy the waters, but the Sony A700/A900 and the Olympus E3 have very responsive AF as well.
05-12-2009, 08:40 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
If what you are using now isn't cutting it, or is sufficiently holding you back in what you want to do, then you should be exploring your options, yes.
Every system will hold you back in some fashion or another though. For myself, I like Pentax glass enough that the quibbles I have about camera responsiveness aren't a big enough deal to chase me into another camera system.
yeah, but if in a position to start over and one had to choose between Pentax K20D, Canon 50D or Nikon D90, and stressed heavy on,
autofocus speed in bright and low light conditions
image quality
accurate metering
good high iso results
easy to use navigation menus and dials

which will be a better choice and why

Dave
05-12-2009, 10:28 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by dafiryde Quote
yeah, but if in a position to start over and one had to choose between Pentax K20D, Canon 50D or Nikon D90, and stressed heavy on,
autofocus speed in bright and low light conditions
image quality
accurate metering
good high iso results
easy to use navigation menus and dials

which will be a better choice and why

Dave
It doesn't matter to me one way or the other.
Nikon and Canon cameras don't make as good use of Pentax lenses as Pentax cameras do.
I use Pentax because I think the lenses are better than Nikon or Canon's lenses, and that is more important to me than camera body performance.
Having said that, a Pentax with the responsivenes of a Nikon D300 would be very nice indeed.
I believe that is somewhat higher calibre than any of the three cameras you've mentioned.
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