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11-09-2011, 04:44 PM   #1
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PK lenses on NEX body...

Looking for anyone with experience using any Pentax lenses on a NEX body. Specifically I am interested in using my DFA lenses on the NEX 5n body. The 5n matches the K-5 in resolution since they have the same sensor, they should be the same. With focus peaking, I think the macros in particular would work quite well. While I love the K-5 for most things I have always found macro work very tedious with an OVF. Then with the slight variations in focus corrected or not, it can be a challenge to get the focus exactly where you want it. Focus peaking should really help with exact focusing.

So the 5n with my DFA 50 and 100 lenses, I belive will make quite a nice second body setup that enhances what I already have on hand with my K-5 plus primes. I am not interested in carrying two K-5 just in case you are thinking of that as an answer. I love it but the second body needs to be light weight which the 5n is.

So any one with any experience with this, I would be very grateful for your experience. Dave

11-09-2011, 05:42 PM   #2
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The Non-Pentax forum has threads discussing these topics: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. - PentaxForums.com

For example:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/non-pentax-cameras-canon-nikon-etc/159240...es-thread.html
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/non-pentax-cameras-canon-nikon-etc/157316...ge-thread.html

As for whether the NEX-5N sensor is the same as the K-5, I think you are mostly right, but I think Pentax applies SMC to their sensors (not 100% sure), and I think it makes a difference (not 100% sure). I am certain, however, that the processing performed by Sony is different, so the look will be different in at least that respect.
11-09-2011, 07:27 PM   #3
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I have NEX-5 (not the N) and I often use it with Pentax K lenses such as FA 43 or Cosina 55 1.2. I can tell you that, Focus Peaking will not help you getting critical focus. It's better suited for wide-ish lens with somewhat deeper DOF where focus accuracy is not so important, or when you stop down the lens. Focus Peaking helps with the speed of manual focusing, but it doesn't get you very accurate focus, just around the ballpark. You're dealing with macro situation where DOF is really thin even when stop down so no, I don't think Focus Peaking will be useful for you.

However, NEX has Focus Assist (magnified view 7x and 14x), which in my experience really useful for getting accurate focus, even with my F1.2 lenses. But then, K-5 in Live View also has similar magnified view. And both has 920k pixel LCD, which improves how accurate you can focus (compare to 200k LCD of K-x). The only advantage of NEX-5N is its LCD can flip, less down time between shot (K-5 needs to re-lock its mirror in between shot) and and perhaps less shutter lag and last but not least, it has optional EVF which K-5 doesn't.

I forgot to add, have you tried K-5 AF in Live View? I think it's very fast and usable even without tripod, and it's very accurate. I know D-FA 100 macro likes to hunt a lot in non-macro situation but in macro where the object is often almost fill the screen, I think the combination of Live View magnified view + quick shift continued with contrast detect AF can be very fast and accurate and NEX-5N can not do that. I haven't tried myself though, I'm not really a macro guy.

Last edited by sajah; 11-09-2011 at 07:37 PM.
11-09-2011, 07:47 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by sajah Quote
I have NEX-5 (not the N) and I often use it with Pentax K lenses such as FA 43 or Cosina 55 1.2. I can tell you that, Focus Peaking will not help you getting critical focus. It's better suited for wide-ish lens with somewhat deeper DOF where focus accuracy is not so important, or when you stop down the lens. Focus Peaking helps with the speed of manual focusing, but it doesn't get you very accurate focus, just around the ballpark. You're dealing with macro situation where DOF is really thin even when stop down so no, I don't think Focus Peaking will be useful for you.

However, NEX has Focus Assist (magnified view 7x and 14x), which in my experience really useful for getting accurate focus, even with my F1.2 lenses. But then, K-5 in Live View also has similar magnified view. And both has 920k pixel LCD, which improves how accurate you can focus (compare to 200k LCD of K-x). The only advantage of NEX-5N is its LCD can flip, less down time between shot (K-5 needs to re-lock its mirror in between shot) and and perhaps less shutter lag and last but not least, it has optional EVF which K-5 doesn't.

I forgot to add, have you tried K-5 AF in Live View? I think it's very fast and usable even without tripod, and it's very accurate. I know D-FA 100 macro likes to hunt a lot in non-macro situation but in macro where the object is often almost fill the screen, I think the combination of Live View magnified view + quick shift continued with contrast detect AF can be very fast and accurate and NEX-5N can not do that. I haven't tried myself though, I'm not really a macro guy.
+1 to this.
I've tried out A77 and NEX5 quite a few times where they are easily avaliable here in the Sony store.
Focus Peaking is not a cureall for MF. It is certainly a very good aid, but it only brings the focus to the 'ballpark' of focus, not tack sharp critical focus.

It also does not always outline the thing you think it will outline for focus, since it outlines the thing that has the highest contrast within the plane of focus.
Eg. If I wanted to take a portrait with tack focus on the eye lashes; very often, instead of peaking at the eyelash as I'd expect, it will peak at the catchlights on the eyes cause those are higher contrast than the black eyelashes.

K5 Liveview is very usable for the thing you do (macro). An aid like Hoodman Hood-Lupe also helps.

11-09-2011, 08:25 PM   #5
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Wow, thanks for the feed back. I like the idea of the Hoodman and after reading some, ordered one. May still get a NEX for a second body and now I know to think more wide with it. That makes a nice two cam setup with say a 21 on the NEX 5n and the 77 on the K-5. Sometimes swapping lenses is awkward or inconvenient but I would rather not carry 2 @ K-5s and if I get the basic same sensor in the lighter body and can still use one set of lenses, it will work for me. Kind of disappointed that the peaking is not the panacea I had hoped for in macro. I did jump over to the correct forum and have learned a lot. It seemed a Pentax lens question so forgive my not knowing the non-pentax body forum existed. This site has everything including all those things we were told never to discuss at parties. Thanks again, Dave
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