DPR review review

Started Mar 1, 2013 | Discussions thread
Gary Martin
Gary Martin Veteran Member • Posts: 4,953
Lenses and Auto-Focusing

The K-01 can be used with lots of lenses (as can the X-E1 using the many adapters that its short flange-back distance allows). However, no Pentax K-mount lenses have been designed with contrast detection AF in mind. Not one. As a result, the K-01 is never very fast at focusing and is sometimes terrible.

By contrast, the X-E1 has a growing number of very high quality lenses designed specifically for it and, from what I remember, everything except the 60mm Macro (which I've not used since the last firmware update) is faster to focus than the K-01.

I never tried the K-01 with the original firmware, but I've been using one with updated firmware regularly with all 5 of the DA Limiteds and the FA50 without problem for months. I (just now) tried all of these lenses in a low-light environment, and they all auto-focus quickly and accurately - in fact I have more confidence in the accuracy of the AF than I do with my PDAF bodies, but that's another story. Then there's the fact that Focus Peaking has breathed new life into my manual focus lenses. The 50/1.4A is now fantastically usable in low-light, better than any previous body going back to my film days. So I don't think there was ever a need for special CDAF lenses for the K-01.

Pentax deserves kudus for doing what they've always done well: support backward compatibility and existing users. Too bad most review sites are more interested in parting consumers from their hard-earned cash to buy the latest-and-greatest tech (soon to be obsolete and replaced, thanks), rather than provide a sensible and affordable upgrade path.

 Gary Martin's gear list:Gary Martin's gear list
Ricoh GR III Pentax K-1 Fujifilm X-T4 Pentax smc FA 43mm F1.9 Limited Pentax smc FA 77mm 1.8 Limited +11 more
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