PK Tether – Tether Shooting for Pentax DSLR

PK Tether is a tool written by Tomasz, an electronics engineer from Poland. Tomasz Google Code Project site [jump]


Pentax once supported tethered shooting with their DSLR cameras. After the K20D, Pentax dropped this feature. A poor decision in my book.

Tethered shooting is the idea of using a computer attached to the DSLR to control all aspects of the shot, preview and save the images in real time. Usually you see this in studio photo shoots. The photographer can tweak the shot quickly. Also, he/she may preview the shot on a large color corrected display. Finally, the images can be saved to the PC, possibly a RAID array just in case.

What to do…

What are enthusiasts to do when a feature is taken away? Hack and craft a work around. This is exactly what Tomasz has done. Tomasz is an Electronics Engineer from Poland. He’s put together PK Tether for Windows. This application replaces the tether shooting feature removed by Pentax.

PK Tether

PK Tether @ Google Site

PK Tether is wonderfully simple. It’s written in .Net 3.5 and comes in a neat little 256KB package. I’m loving it’s simplicity.

PK Tether’s features are:

  • full camera control
  • auto image storage on the pc
  • periodic shooting (time lapse anyone?)

The Controls

Most photographers will feel at home in PK Tether. Your camera controls are located along the bottom of the preview window. You can quickly change the setup as you shoot. Some settings that can take time to change directly on the camera are immediately accessible in the program. Notice you can change the capture format very quickly. The capture format setting on the camera is two menus deep.


Click “Shutter” and your photo appears in the preview window. Shortly after that your photo shows up in the temp storage to the right. Right from the application you can pick and choose what you need.



Auto Save

This is great for when data integrity is key. Imagine you are paying for a model’s time and your SD card dies, the model still gets paid and you have nothing to show for it. With Autosave you can store to a RAID setup. Even a simple RAID 1 is better than any SD card.



Periodic Shooting

With peridoic shooting you could setup an amazing HD time lapse movie. You could record the moon’s path across the night sky or a thunderstorm moving in.





Final Thoughts

PK Tether is a great solution. I sure hope Pentax re-introduces official support for tethered shooting. In the mean time, we have PK Tether, which is an amazing little application.

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