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07-31-2011, 04:38 PM   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
Sometimes lens speed is nice for an effect but when the goal is to capture something at all costs, low DOF is a risk that makes no sense to take.
Better motion blur than out of focus is as good a mantra as anything, I guess.

07-31-2011, 06:52 PM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Better motion blur than out of focus is as good a mantra as anything, I guess.
...No. He was shooting at 1/2500 of a second. He could comfortably get that down to 1/800 with no motion blur, and a safe margin of error to boot.
07-31-2011, 11:21 PM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
...No. He was shooting at 1/2500 of a second. He could comfortably get that down to 1/800 with no motion blur, and a safe margin of error to boot.
Making generic statements from specific situations is pointless.
08-01-2011, 06:27 AM   #49
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Hi Traci

To start off, let me tell you that I own the very same lens and I am blown away with the IQ this lens produces. I also have to tell you that I use this lens almost exclusively "free hand" and despite a miss spend youth I am able to hold the cam with this lens mounted very steady. But this is only possible now by practicing my breathing technique and the way I hold the camera. I am starting off my reply to you with these comments because I feel that this is a vital starting point, when everything else is equal, to obtain good sharp results. (Often not preached)

Next, we have not really found out from you yet whether or not you are using a UV Filter. If you do, my advise to you is, dig a hole in your backyard and bury it there. Or at least if you feel you need one in extreme hostile conditions to bury it in the deepest corner of your camera bag, so it is out of sight.

Particularly with this lens even in hostile situations you don't need it because:
A) The lens has a very deep bucket-like lens hood which protects well
B) The lens has the PENTAX unique protective coating at the front elements.

UV filters were necessary in the old film days because film is UV sensitive, digital sensors are not. However most camera shops like to make a big deal out of this protection thing because the want to add value to a sale. Glare and/or reflection can only be reduced with a Polarizer and when you buy one (and you should) spend as much on it as you can. (Marumi is a good brand).

Looking at your bear pictures among other things I get the distinct feeling you are using a UV filter. It can cause all sorts of reflection problem particularly if its a cheap one.

Also, when taking pictures of inanimate objects you can give yourself a bit more time to achieve correct focus, meaning the time spent between half press to focus to full press to trigger the shutter can be as long as you like. When taking picture of "bears" however this time should always be as short as possible (focus beep-click) particularly if you have set the autofocus to AF.S but it is also valid for AF.C. Bears never stay still for long and if you hasitate between focus lock and shutter release the bear will have moved. Result is out of focus pics. Also set you cam to rapid fire, this will take several shots in quick succession and you will find one will be o.k.

Also use/try catch-in focus function, its very helpful in fast moving situations. and last but not least I prefer the Centre Focus setting particularly if there are lots of focus points that can confuse the camera's auto focus system.

Hope all this is of help to you, the rest is all practice, practice.

To show you what this lens can do here are a cuple of pics of inanimate objects.
Have a look at the EXIF data.

Greetings


Last edited by Schraubstock; 03-07-2012 at 09:34 PM.
08-02-2011, 11:38 AM   #50
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So, I did some admittedly amateur tests with my lens. It looks like I get the most sharpness when I have a +10 AF fine tuning adjustment on certain settings, and even that doesn't look "tack sharp". That's making me think that I might just have a bad lens? (Coupled with some user error, as well.) For that price, I'm not sure I should need to be messing around with the lens that much. I have gotten much better results with much cheaper lenses, using a UV filter, and not changing much else. Thoughts on possibly just getting a bad lens?
08-02-2011, 12:05 PM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Making generic statements from specific situations is pointless.
No, choosing low DOF over an in-focus shot is pointless.

When in doubt, f8 is your friend. No one will look at your perfect capture of a moment and say "but the background is so distracting". That just does not happen. It might be BETTER, in PERFECT conditions, to have a "perfect" DOF for subject isolation, but it can easily backfire in fleeting moments where it would be preferable to simply capture the moment.

Not everything needs to look like a portrait, not every shot needs subject isolation to be interesting! THOSE are fairly general statements that you are implying, as well!
08-02-2011, 02:46 PM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
No, choosing low DOF over an in-focus shot is pointless.
That makes no sense, because you can choose low DOF and still have an in-focus shot.

And low DOF is not necessarily the result of a decision to have low DOF - most often, it is just the side effect of trying to obtain faster shutter speeds when you cannot increase ISO. In those situations, going with lower shutter speeds will risk motion blur.

In situations where you have plenty of light to shoot at small apertures with high DOF, not doing so is not risky - it's just poor use.
08-02-2011, 03:09 PM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
That makes no sense, because you can choose low DOF and still have an in-focus shot.

And low DOF is not necessarily the result of a decision to have low DOF - most often, it is just the side effect of trying to obtain faster shutter speeds when you cannot increase ISO. In those situations, going with lower shutter speeds will risk motion blur.

In situations where you have plenty of light to shoot at small apertures with high DOF, not doing so is not risky - it's just poor use.
No you can't. You got to have sufficient DOF that the subject dictates. If you have two bears in a frame you need more DOF than maximum aperture can provide. Shooting at F:4 at 250mm basically mean that you can only shoot two-dimentional subjects practically speaking, or only have the eye(s) in focus (but not for two bears).

If image is due for the garbage bin due to lack of DOF or motion blur is semantics. You must have sufficient DOF anyway for the intended subject or else the image will fail. If it can't be done, then the intended image can't be shot.

08-02-2011, 03:25 PM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by Traci Quote
Thoughts on possibly just getting a bad lens?
I think you possibly do have a bad lens. Despite the theorising back and forth, fact remains is your original picture is far too soft, far softer than I'd expect. If you can return the lens and get a different copy I'd do it.
08-02-2011, 04:40 PM   #55
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Who gives a salmon about bears?

QuoteOriginally posted by Pål Jensen Quote
No you can't.
No, you can't - WHAT?

The statements you quoted have nothing to do with your bear situation. Just look at what I was replying to if you have the time.

But let's get back to those two bears and say that you want both of them to look as if they were in focus. My point was that choosing shooting parameters that lead you to a thin DOF is not a "risk that makes no sense to take" - it just won't work. There is no risk in taking a path that is doomed to fail - there may exist an illusion around chances of success, but there is really no risk that you may succeed.

QuoteOriginally posted by Pål Jensen Quote
If you have two bears in a frame you need more DOF than maximum aperture can provide.
You may want it, but you don't really need it. There's nothing necessarily wrong with having a single bear in focus. You could also use a fisheye wide open and get them both to look in focus, so your statement isn't true in more ways than one.

The comments you quoted were just made in response to statements like these:

QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
Sometimes lens speed is nice for an effect but when the goal is to capture something at all costs, low DOF is a risk that makes no sense to take.
QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
No, choosing low DOF over an in-focus shot is pointless.
Please reread the context of those statements and tell me how many bears you encountered during this exercise.
08-02-2011, 04:48 PM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by Traci Quote
So, I did some admittedly amateur tests with my lens.
Can you describe your testing? Did you use the lens on a tripod, with mirror up, and remote shutter release? Did you try focusing manually, using live view if necessary? Can you post some of the results obtained in these attempts?
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