Pentax KP - Does all I need..... or it would do if I could make sense of the manual!


GeoffSteyning

Link Posted 09/03/2020 - 17:12
I had several problems with 'customising' my KP - no, not a paint job, just finding the things I'd been hoping for. I'm a keen follower of several YouTube 'vloggers' and, of course, none use a Pentax.... but I quite liked the ease that they had with their Canons, Fujifilms, Nikons etc in doing certain things. However, the manual hasn't been much use and sometimes just doesn't make sense at all. There are only two things (for now) that I can't work out......
1. No visible histogram in either the viewfinder or Live View (that I can find). (Though it's brilliant in the Image Playback) - This means that, when in Manual mode, I have to just guess that my exposure is going to be right - or else be forced to use what the electronics tell me to use.
2. I don't see why I can't use the electronic shutter in the Bulb mode. I'd be happier to know my image in a long exposure wasn't going to be disturbed by the mechanical shutter.
3. The YouTube crowd move their focus point around freely, by 'joystick' control. (particularly useful for focus stacking).....I'm limited by the smaller area covered by the active points. I haven't sorted out how to use "Depth of Field Bracketing" yet, so maybe that would be my answer......anybody else using it?
4. A couple of hours of lifting the KP to look for buttons and displays certainly builds the muscles!

While I'm here, I'd like to state my disappointment with Pentax/Ricoh regarding non-attendance at the Photoshow. A bit like my visit to Wex in London last year, when Pentax said, on a Facebook ad, I think, that they'd be on show, with rep. A couple of cameras and one rep were there (nice chap), and one other Pentaxian..... the shop was crowded, though, because all the camera companies were there - with loads of reps and demonstrators.

All the best, Geoff, Steyning.

punkrockemo

Link Posted 09/03/2020 - 17:36
Quote:
1. No visible histogram in either the viewfinder or Live View (that I can find). (Though it's brilliant in the Image Playback) - This means that, when in Manual mode, I have to just guess that my exposure is going to be right - or else be forced to use what the electronics tell me to use.

You can get histogram in live view, there is option to tick on page 5 of menu under live view. For some reason the histogram will not show when focus peaking is on!

pschlute

Link Posted 09/03/2020 - 19:30
GeoffSteyning wrote:

1. No visible histogram in either the viewfinder or Live View (that I can find). (Though it's brilliant in the Image Playback) - This means that, when in Manual mode, I have to just guess that my exposure is going to be right - or else be forced to use what the electronics tell me to use.

Why not look at the light meter. In Manual mode it generally should be centred to get correct exposure. I only use the histogram after a photo has been taken.

GeoffSteyning wrote:

2. I don't see why I can't use the electronic shutter in the Bulb mode. I'd be happier to know my image in a long exposure wasn't going to be disturbed by the mechanical shutter.

Mechanical shutter problems, so called "shutter shock" only affect certain images if the speed is in the general range 1/60 - 1/250. When using Bulb, the "shock" is too small a part of the overall exposure for it to have any effect.

GeoffSteyning wrote:

3. The YouTube crowd move their focus point around freely, by 'joystick' control. (particularly useful for focus stacking).....I'm limited by the smaller area covered by the active points.

You can move the focus points/point on the KP, but it is not as easy as a joystick. The new aps-c flagship will feature a joystick.
Peter



My Flickr page

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GeoffSteyning

Link Posted 10/03/2020 - 12:26
Thanks for all that....

Punkrockemo....... Yes, I'd found the option in the menu, but the "Histogram" option is greyed-out. No worries, I'll either stumble into the answer or do without it.

Pschlute........ Thanks for those three hints. Yes, I'll have to rely on the exposure meter - I was hoping for a Histogram so I could see exactly what I was going to get, but I'll get used to what I've got. I could be very interested in the next APS-C camera - but I'll look for a better manual (oh, for those 'Magic Lantern' books!). I bought my KP for a bargain price, before I'd got to know much about it - but I was itching to get a flippy screen and 8 more Mp, after the excellent K5ii.
Last Edited by GeoffSteyning on 10/03/2020 - 12:26

GeoffSteyning

Link Posted 12/03/2020 - 11:50
I suppose there's just one remaining question...... "Depth of Field Bracketing"....... but I've just tried it out by following the manual. It's probably better to stick with manually altering the focus point, with camera on tripod. Again, the tiny little icons in the manual defeated me, or the camera just doesn't behave the way the book says.

You probably wonder why I haven't already sorted out these things.

I bought the camera last summer as a 'feel good' purchase, after an operation in hospital. Apart from the temporary physical slowing down, it just never seemed to stop raining, and, as a landscape fan, I like to go to some places here in Sussex where the ground is relatively firm. So I haven't really given myself the chance to learn the gear, though I have to admit that I'm not enjoying the KP...... I'd go back to my K5ii but I was keen to get the KP for the flexible screen and the extra 8Mp. I look forward to seeing the next APS-C in the pipeline... though, like the K5, I may wait for the Mk2 version of it.

Thanks, fellow Pentaxians.
Last Edited by GeoffSteyning on 12/03/2020 - 11:53

pschlute

Link Posted 12/03/2020 - 20:22
GeoffSteyning wrote:
I suppose there's just one remaining question...... "Depth of Field Bracketing"....... but I've just tried it out by following the manual. It's probably better to stick with manually altering the focus point, with camera on tripod. Again, the tiny little icons in the manual defeated me, or the camera just doesn't behave the way the book says.


DOF bracketing changes the aperture. The focus point should stay the same throughout the exposures. It is the DOF you are trying to influence, not the focus point.
Peter



My Flickr page

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richandfleur

Link Posted 12/03/2020 - 20:26
GeoffSteyning wrote:
I have to admit that I'm not enjoying the KP...... I'd go back to my K5ii but I was keen to get the KP for the flexible screen and the extra 8Mp. I look forward to seeing the next APS-C in the pipeline...

The KP was an interesting hybrid between what had previously been two quite different product lines.
It had the focus system from the K-3 range but not the burst/twin card slots/buffer, Pixel shift / high iso with low noise / and dials from the K-1, but the battery and shutter from the K-70 range.

Those who like it like it (favourite saying ) but it's not the same type of camera as the K-5 K-3 etc, so those looking for this could be disappointed.

I too am very keen to see what the next Pentax camera will offer, otherwise I might simply go the mirrorless route personally. I'm not sure how other people feel, but i've held onto my K-3 for quite some time in anticipation of a replacement that appeals to me.

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womble

Link Posted 12/03/2020 - 21:55
I've hung onto my K-3 because it does everything I want and more. I wasn't in any rush to change but I'll get to use the new model when it's released.
Kris Lockyear
It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head. Henri Cartier-Bresson
Lots of film bodies, a couple of digital ones, too many lenses (mainly older glass) and a Horseman LE 5x4.

My website

richandfleur

Link Posted 12/03/2020 - 22:10
Title got me thinking a bit, and have always felt the Pentax manuals (and menus to some degree - same concept) were very engineering/technical focussed, but lacked a translation document to suggest when you might want to use a particular feature.

Example being say tracking focus on the K-3. Depending on the situation, you might want the first shot to be in focus first, or fire before focus confirmation has been obtained. You might want focus hold to be on if the bird is periodically going behind branches that catch the focus attention or you might be photographing a cycle race where you don't want any focus delay. You may want to use all 25 focus points or just the centre 9 etc.

All these options exist, and that's great, but it takes a lot of trial and error to find the combo that works, (and forums are awesome help for this...), but it would be great if some use case scenarios were included alongside the technical bits, to explain how some settings interact, and what a sensible config would be for different scenarios. Or to convey what the design intention was etc.

If not the manual then support with some training videos. Not sure what Pentax has been up to lately on the youtube side of things?
Just checked, and no uploads in 6 months for ricohimaginguk

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GeoffSteyning

Link Posted 20/03/2020 - 09:23
Yes, exactly, something to translate the manual(s) to 'real world' usage..... just as those "Magic Lantern" books did (up to the K10 I think) and I also found a PDF that covered practical usage of the K5. The books (still going for Canon/Nikon) probably just made a loss for their Pentax versions, but the PDF, made by a non-professional - a fellow Pentaxian - was very useful and free (though it would have been worth a fiver - perhaps there's somebody on the Forum that could have a go?)

Anyway, I've taken up more than my share of space on here with my questions above. Thank you all for your time and effort in sharing your knowledge.
Last Edited by GeoffSteyning on 20/03/2020 - 09:24

Blincodave

Link Posted 23/03/2020 - 18:53
I have this guide on the KP. The author recently passed away but I believe the website is still operative:

https://ebooks4cameras.com/shop?olsPage=products%2Fkp-book

JohnX

Link Posted 23/03/2020 - 19:21
Blincodave wrote:
I have this guide on the KP. The author recently passed away but I believe the website is still operative:

https://ebooks4cameras.com/shop?olsPage=products%2Fkp-book

Same ebook slightly cheaper on the other forum. https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/donations/?ebooks=1&loginrequired=1

I have no idea what they're on about with 'donations' though, as it seems you just buy the book. Maybe they get a %?
Last Edited by JohnX on 23/03/2020 - 19:23

pschlute

Link Posted 23/03/2020 - 22:51
JohnX wrote:

I have no idea what they're on about with 'donations' though, as it seems you just buy the book. Maybe they get a %?

If you donate to the costs of running the forum you get the book for free
Peter



My Flickr page

theonenadeem

Link Posted 24/03/2020 - 12:41
pschlute wrote:
JohnX wrote:

I have no idea what they're on about with 'donations' though, as it seems you just buy the book. Maybe they get a %?

If you donate to the costs of running the forum you get the book for free

Do you know , what the expected donation is?

Blincodave

Link Posted 24/03/2020 - 12:52
I think if you pay by PayPal, the forum receives a donation as part of the purchase. The purchase price is still the same to you. I purchased direct so I can't be sure however.
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