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Old 09-07-2013, 09:52 AM   #1
MAJPLO
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Pentax question

I'm sure this depends largely on what you are shooting but how do choose where to set your focus point? This isn't exactly just a Pentax question but I've paid a little closer attention to the Pentax posters' photos and other posts so i may understand responses from Pentax users a little better. I'm finding it a little awkward to change the focus point in between shots. Any tips? I'm using the K30.
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Old 09-07-2013, 10:13 AM   #2
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Simple answer is that I don't change the focus points for each shot - too time consuming.

Instead, I have set my k-30 to AF Active Area = Spot.
This means that the focus point is the centre of the screen.
When I take a photo I point the centre of my screen at the object I want in focus - half press the shutter so that the camera focuses on this point and then reframe my picture how I want it to look. Then fully press the photo.

I understand that in macro photography this is not ideal as recomposing the shot will affect my focus and DoF but it works for my style of photography. Also not great when using a tripod.
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Old 09-07-2013, 12:22 PM   #3
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I use the same procedure as Nigelp. It works well handheld and in the AFS (autofocus single) mode. When shooting with a tripod I use the Select mode and move it around by the use of the rear control buttons to the spot I wish to focus on. When shooting continuous (AFC) focus it gets a little dicey. Its been my experience that with movement the intended focus point can change. With manual focus I use the same as the AFS procedure.
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Old 09-07-2013, 12:40 PM   #4
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I use Selective point and move It around with the 4 way pad. I like to shoot at 1.8-2.2 a lot. Focusing and recomposing with a narrow DOF makes your shot out of focus.
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Old 09-07-2013, 02:21 PM   #5
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I use Selective point and move It around with the 4 way pad. I like to shoot at 1.8-2.2 a lot. Focusing and recomposing with a narrow DOF makes your shot out of focus.
This is what I've had trouble with on a borrowed 43mm 1.9 Do you just get better at moving it by using the 4way pad frequently?
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Old 09-07-2013, 02:24 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Gianna'sPapa View Post
I use the same procedure as Nigelp. It works well handheld and in the AFS (autofocus single) mode. When shooting with a tripod I use the Select mode and move it around by the use of the rear control buttons to the spot I wish to focus on. When shooting continuous (AFC) focus it gets a little dicey. Its been my experience that with movement the intended focus point can change. With manual focus I use the same as the AFS procedure.
When shooting on AFC (turning a dial on my K30) are there any other adjustments that you make through the menu for the focus?
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Old 09-07-2013, 03:32 PM   #7
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Once you turn the dial to AF-C, the camera is in continuous focus. That's one of the luxuries of Pentax and the external control even on their entry models.

When you have your focus points set to selective point, it doesn't matter which lens you use, you pick your point by using the 4 way buttons.

When you hit the buttons does it bring up WB/Flash/Picture Control? On Selective Point Focus, holding the OK button toggles back and forth between picking your point and using the buttons to change your WB/Flash/PC.
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Old 09-07-2013, 04:17 PM   #8
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I just learnt something! Lol, I use cntre spot and AF-S, always recomposing. I'll play with the other options next time Im using the tripod
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Old 09-07-2013, 04:29 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by HPS3 View Post
Once you turn the dial to AF-C, the camera is in continuous focus. That's one of the luxuries of Pentax and the external control even on their entry models.

When you have your focus points set to selective point, it doesn't matter which lens you use, you pick your point by using the 4 way buttons.

When you hit the buttons does it bring up WB/Flash/Picture Control? On Selective Point Focus, holding the OK button toggles back and forth between picking your point and using the buttons to change your WB/Flash/PC.
I've used the selective point focus it just seems unwieldy to me to change the focus point very often with holding down the OK button and all.

Thank you guys for all your tips and advice. I really appreciate it
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Old 09-07-2013, 04:33 PM   #10
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I just learnt something! Lol, I use cntre spot and AF-S, always recomposing. I'll play with the other options next time Im using the tripod
Changing to selective was kind of hard for me to find the first time. Had to go through the INFO button to find it. :/
Do you have any trouble with your shot being out of focus when you center focus and then recompose when using a wide aperture?
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Old 09-07-2013, 07:43 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by MAJPLO View Post
Changing to selective was kind of hard for me to find the first time. Had to go through the INFO button to find it. :/
Do you have any trouble with your shot being out of focus when you center focus and then recompose when using a wide aperture?
For a moment, I had to go look at the DGD's K30, before I remembered that there wasn't an external switch like on the K5 series. Its menu driven. Can there be a focus problem with a large aperture lens? Yes, it will depend on the size of the aperture and focal distance. For example, if you are shooting at f1.4 at a close distance the DOF is going to be very shallow. You will have a large out-of-focus area. If you focus on the tip of someone's nose, their eyes could be slightly of focus. As you move farther away increasing the focal length the depth of field increases, however at f1.4 it will still be thin. It really is up to you and your experience to obtain the look you are trying to obtain.
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Old 09-07-2013, 07:46 PM   #12
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You don't have to hold the OK button to change focus points, just use the 4 way pad. I use my thumb while looking through the VF. Holding the OK button until you hear a beep just toggles the USE of the 4 way pad. When your in selective point and you want to use the pad to change your WB or Picture Settings you hold down the OK button for a second and let it go, now your 4 way pad no longer changes your focus point but allows you to adjust your WB/flash/PC, hold it down again and let it go and it works your focus points again. You don't hold it down to change you points.
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Old 09-07-2013, 07:53 PM   #13
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Like Mr Terry said, at wide apertures, you DOF can be really thin. By focusing and recomposing with wide apertures like 1.4-2, you can shift you plane of focus when you move the camera even the slightest.
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:28 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HPS3 View Post
Like Mr Terry said, at wide apertures, you DOF can be really thin. By focusing and recomposing with wide apertures like 1.4-2, you can shift you plane of focus when you move the camera even the slightest.
the chances of that are remote as long as you don't move forward or back, and simple focus and recompose works fine (at least on my Canon).

On the lower end cameras you may not have many cross-type auto focus points, so the centre point is often more accurate than some of the others.
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:45 PM   #15
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You can have as many cross points as you want, but with a large aperture it probably won't focus on what you want, usually will look for the largest contrasty area and pick something in there, that's why I use centre point and recompose, sure there is the risk of getting a little soft, it happens, usually I'll take to shots focusing on the same point and recomposing
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