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04-23-2010, 03:29 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by gostwick Quote
Thinking about it, it is the in focus accuracy percentage increase that I desire more than an improvement in speed.

I too look for focus accuracy first before looking at focus speed. I have seen many photogs with better cameras than my K10D, their focus accuracy percentage are similar or low compare to my K10D except the D3 which is in a completely different league by itself.

04-23-2010, 04:01 PM   #17
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No, I have definately got a size based inferiorority complex about the K-7's smaller looking body. I quite like the idea of lugging around a conspiquous lump for all to oggle at. Perhas I'm too used to the K10D body and therefore can't 'let go'. I'll have to get over to Campkins and try the K-7 on for size, again. Perhaps if I tell myself that it is small but comfortable, I could use this as a window to convince me to purchase.

Percieved focus speed, accuracy, body size and good 1600 to 3200 ISO noise performance could push me to the Ca#%n 7D. My investment in Pentax is not huge. 1x K10D, 1x AF540 Flash, 1x Sigma DC 18-50mm F2.8 EX lens, primarily. Plus a handful of other old and slow K mount 'budget glass'. I am tempted to sell the 3 primary items, if they are desirable and invest in Ca#%n gear to replace. You can also shoot tethered in the studio with the Ca#%n. I like the idea of that fact as it seems that with the K-7, this is not possible.

Crumbs what a Kuffufle!

My K10D often does not seem sharply in focus,....before even pixel peeping at 100%.

Last edited by gostwick; 04-23-2010 at 04:06 PM. Reason: focus point
04-23-2010, 05:02 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by gostwick Quote
You can also shoot tethered in the studio with the Ca#%n. I like the idea of that fact as it seems that with the K-7, this is not possible.
The number of professional photographers who shoot tethered in studio is VERY small... the TOTAL number of people who buy a camera and will shoot tethered in a studio is MUCH smaller. I suspect the big deal about tethering a k-7 is much like the reason why a 2010 minivan has more horsepower than a 1995 sports car - the perception that one day it might be handy so I better get it. I would never dare say that having a tethered camera is a gimmick because it is really not... but unless you are a professional product shooter then the value will be pretty limited.

On the other hand the 7D is a sweet camera so don't let me talk you out of it... but think back to this conversation in 3 years and ask yourself how many times you tethered your camera and how critical that feature was.
04-24-2010, 03:03 AM   #19
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gostwick, the K20D+grip is an impressive package, both to handle and to operate. OK, so it won't outperform the 7D at ISO 3200, but K20D's ISO 1600 is very useable. How often do you really need ISO 3200? You could get faster Pentax lenses at a fraction of the price of Canon or Nikon's equivalents.

I'm not a fan of the 7D myself (in case you hadn't already realised) and this thread discusses the 7D's issues quite objectively in this regard. This thread also may give you further insight on the 7D compared with the K-7.

04-24-2010, 09:06 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Peter Zack Quote
A 1.8? Really. There are a lot of 135mm's at different max apertures. I hate to say it, but if it really was the f1.8 version, it's worth around $1000 in mint shape. In fact any Pentax or Takumar brand lens in decent shape and working is worth more than $40 at the worst and I would buy any I found for $20.00 either to use or sell.
.
I actually went back to try out the lens and the thing was busted. I was hoping to sell the thing. It was the 2.8
04-26-2010, 12:19 AM   #21
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One of my main concerns has been the AF in low light. My K20D is good, but at times (Especially with the FA31) it's pretty slow and takes a good few seconds to lock ANY focus. *sigh*

And I can't manual focus worth a darn on these things -_-;;

Anyways, curious if AF has been improved in low light for the K-7? My problem was waiting for the AF to be in focus in low light but would get the 'zff zff zff zff' or... it'd just give up...

I shoot a lot of non-flash stuff so this is key for me.
04-26-2010, 06:24 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by dugrant153 Quote
One of my main concerns has been the AF in low light. My K20D is good, but at times (Especially with the FA31) it's pretty slow and takes a good few seconds to lock ANY focus. *sigh*

And I can't manual focus worth a darn on these things -_-;;

Anyways, curious if AF has been improved in low light for the K-7? My problem was waiting for the AF to be in focus in low light but would get the 'zff zff zff zff' or... it'd just give up...

I shoot a lot of non-flash stuff so this is key for me.
The K7 is better, but still not good enough.
04-26-2010, 07:47 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by dugrant153 Quote
Anyways, curious if AF has been improved in low light for the K-7?
The K-7 is the only Pentax DSLR with a built-in focus assist lamp, so yes, it will be faster, and not just slightly. You can get the same effect on other cameras by mounting a flash unit that has a focus assist built in (presumably some of these units would allow you to use the focus assist even when not actually using the flash per se, but I have no idea which units those might be).

04-26-2010, 08:11 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by dugrant153 Quote
One of my main concerns has been the AF in low light. My K20D is good, but at times (Especially with the FA31) it's pretty slow and takes a good few seconds to lock ANY focus. *sigh*

And I can't manual focus worth a darn on these things -_-;;

Anyways, curious if AF has been improved in low light for the K-7? My problem was waiting for the AF to be in focus in low light but would get the 'zff zff zff zff' or... it'd just give up...

I shoot a lot of non-flash stuff so this is key for me.


I do think that with a lot of practice, regardless of the lenses, I think one can get much better at manual focusing. In fact, that is the only way, really. My dad had several photo journalist friends that used to work for Japanese news papers (this was 30-40 years ago), and I remember some of these guys talking about the position of their left hand, elbow angles, and the importance of determining the dominant eye, and to use that eye to look into the viewfinder, or not, and the discussion used to go on and on. I am sure there are also forum members here that would love to talk about that stuff.

So the point I think is that as a photographer, I don't think it would hurt to be a manual focus expert. Who knows, your clients may even like that. They may (or may not) somehow sense that it is more "professional" to manual focus.

I dunno. I am just throwing that out there. A bit off topic. Sorry.
04-26-2010, 08:50 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by dugrant153 Quote
One of my main concerns has been the AF in low light. My K20D is good, but at times (Especially with the FA31) it's pretty slow and takes a good few seconds to lock ANY focus. *sigh*
Pop up the built-in flash. Hit AF button (or half shutter press). Then press shutter.
The AF assist lamp for the K10D/K20D is the built-in popup...or add a Pentax flash to the hotshoe...
04-26-2010, 09:39 AM   #26
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The AF assist lamp would definitely be helpful in those situations when itís dark. I donít think we can turn off the Ďflashí from the AF540FGZ to get only the focus assist, can we?
Even when the K20D used it, I found the focus assist to not always be spot onÖ or the K20D just couldn`t read the red focus lamp light well enough and I`d lose a photo (out of focus). This is in next to complete darkness though and was the situation in a recent event photoshoot I did. Iím thinking that if the K-7 is accurate with itís green strobe AF-assist lamp, that would cure that situation.

The K-7 is definitely more Ďconfidentí compared to my K20D when I used it in the store. Where as the K20D seemed nervous, the K-7 seems like itís just out there to go and grab focus. (And itís super quiet! Ė a huge benefit in churches and other quiet events). With my K20D, I generally try to look for nice contrasty light and use that as my place to autofocus Ė then recompose as needed although I prefer not to. But that can be time lost when thereís no contrasty light as my K20D will go from lock to lock trying to find something to hang onto. OR even when it does find focus, Iíve already lost the personís emotion and catch them blinking or something. I realize part of this is technique, but at times Iíll have the shutter pressed hard and have everything lined up, but the K20D will take itís time and by thenÖ the moment is gone.
I havenít had a chance to put the K-7 through its paces (especially in all the tough situations I put my cameras through Ė dark churches, candle light events, slideshow presentations with the only light coming from the projector itselfÖ), but Iím hoping itís a big jump and that it has more confident AF for the type of shots I go for.

I would ideally like to use manual focus but as I canít seem to get as good accuracy as my K20Dís autofocus. I donít like recomposing my image so that my AF can fit my selected AF point, but for me itís either that or I lose an image because my eyes canít tell the difference between a slightly not-focused image and a very sharp image. This is something Iíll have to work on (And probably a topic for another thread!)

Sorry to hijack the thread, but this topic is of very particular interest to me
04-26-2010, 09:48 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nubi Quote
I do think that with a lot of practice, regardless of the lenses, I think one can get much better at manual focusing. In fact, that is the only way, really. My dad had several photo journalist friends that used to work for Japanese news papers (this was 30-40 years ago), and I remember some of these guys talking about the position of their left hand, elbow angles, and the importance of determining the dominant eye, and to use that eye to look into the viewfinder, or not, and the discussion used to go on and on. I am sure there are also forum members here that would love to talk about that stuff.

So the point I think is that as a photographer, I don't think it would hurt to be a manual focus expert. Who knows, your clients may even like that. They may (or may not) somehow sense that it is more "professional" to manual focus.

I dunno. I am just throwing that out there. A bit off topic. Sorry.
Considering that one of the major weaknesses of Pentax as compared to the other guys is the strength of the AF, I'm not seeing this as being off topic.
Far from it not hurting to be a manual focus expert, if one is going to use a Pentax camera as a wedding camera, becoming a manual focus expert is a necessity, not an option.
My last wedding I went back to what I learned in the early 70s for shooting processionals and focused on a point in the aisle and shot when someone got there.
It worked far better than the AF would have, given my prior experience with it.
04-26-2010, 01:16 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Considering that one of the major weaknesses of Pentax as compared to the other guys is the strength of the AF, I'm not seeing this as being off topic.
Far from it not hurting to be a manual focus expert, if one is going to use a Pentax camera as a wedding camera, becoming a manual focus expert is a necessity, not an option.
My last wedding I went back to what I learned in the early 70s for shooting processionals and focused on a point in the aisle and shot when someone got there.
It worked far better than the AF would have, given my prior experience with it.

Wow, I am glad you agree!!

I also think that manual focusing you get to know your lenses much better. Somehow the sweet spots seem more obvious. You also become much more conscious about steadying not only your arms and hands, but the whole body. How about your breathing?? That can affect manual focusing too. Not to be old fashioned, but there is a lot to be said about old techniques. But please note that I am not bashing on those who rely on AF. I think that AF can also be very very useful in many situations.


I used to wonder ( and still do) if this is how Pentax feels about auto focusing. From the engineering standpoint, I don't think that it will be all that hard to bring AF to par with the other guys. It seems like they have stubbornly(?) stayed away from making dramatic improvements in that area. Think about what they did with the K-7 sensor; more film like quality (although I think they seemed to have made some adjustments after some people complained about excessive noise). Perhaps Pentax is a company who strive for photographers who thoughtfully compose one shot at a time, instead of picking one or two out of thousands. For fps, maybe the same thing can be said. . . . It seems as though they cherry pick where they want to dump their resources, and AF is just not that important.

Just a speculation. Even more off topic . . . . . .
04-29-2010, 11:14 AM   #29
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Have a look at some of my wedding photos from the K10D. I feel your pain when you say the moment is lost due to slow focus. If you see an expression on a face you have a split second to grab it. There is often no time to manually focus.

Besides if I am to pay all that money to Pentax coffers I want a camera that can focus, AF that is, pretty swiftly and accurately. The K-7 is after all the top of the line DSLR Pentax does!

Spectral Photography
04-29-2010, 11:19 AM   #30
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Most of the modern day DSLRs are capable of delivering great photos for wedding events... the real question is the person behind it.
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