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11-23-2016, 03:33 PM   #1
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Teleconverter question

Hello All

I am looking for a little more reach than I currently have with my lenses. The price for the DFA 150-450 is way out of my budget. One option I am considering is the Pentax HD teleconverter. From what I know it may be incompatible with certain cameras and lenses and I would want to know if it would be a good fit for what I have:
Cameras: K-5 (original) Firmware Version 1.16 and K-3 Firmware Version 1.21
Lenses I would plan to use it with:
DFA 100 Macro WR
DA* 200
HD DA 55-300
Does anyone have experience with the TC with any of these lenses and or camera bodies? If my gear is compatible I will definitely go for the TC

Thanks,

11-23-2016, 03:35 PM   #2
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It should be fine with all those. You only run in to issues on the K-1, since the 1.4x is a crop teleconverter.

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11-23-2016, 03:42 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by jddwoods Quote
Lenses I would plan to use it with:
DFA 100 Macro WR
DA* 200
HD DA 55-300
Does anyone have experience with the TC with any of these lenses and or camera bodies? If my gear is compatible I will definitely go for the TC
I own the DFA 100 and DA* 200 versions you have and have used the HD 1.4x TC many times with both with success. The TC pairs well with both. The HD DA 55-300 is a newer version of my SMC DA 55-300 but I have never tried the TC with it. In theory the slower the wide open aperture is on a lens the less well suited for a TC it is and the HD DA 55-300 is not fast. However I do think I have heard of people successfully using the HD 1.4x TC on that lens.
11-23-2016, 03:45 PM   #4
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Also check the review of the converter in the lens reviews as that gives you a list of the incompatible lenses. Your lenses are fine though. The 55-300 will have trouble focussing unless the light is very good. The TC is recommended for lenses f4 or faster. Good luck.

11-23-2016, 04:22 PM   #5
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Not sure what your budget is but if you can afford it the Sigma 150-500 isn't bad. I use it on my K-3 and have got some shots that I think are really good.
11-23-2016, 04:51 PM   #6
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I've used a kenko 1.4x with a DAL 55-300. If the light was good enough ie sunny my K5 handled the combo pretty well. However although the 55-300 is a pretty good lens it is debatable whether there is really any advantage to using the TC. On balance, more often I would say that f5.8 is already rather slow and dropping to ~f8.5 is going to tend to compromise your shutter speeds and 420mm will multiply shake and vibrations. Those are the trade offs that make tc's difficult...

However you should check out normhead 's posts in the 300mm lens club, using stacked tc's with the DA* 200mm. Now that lens is fast enough and high enough quality (lens quality is the starting point with tc's, if the lens is only average quality then the quality of the tc is usually irrelevant and the results inadequate) to produce impressive results eg

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/122-lens-clubs/55946-300mm-plus-lens-club...ml#post3764483
11-23-2016, 05:22 PM - 1 Like   #7
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DA*200 and 1.4 TC



200 x 1.4 slideshow

DA*200 with F 1.7x AF Adapter.

DA*200 and F1.7 AF Adapter slideshow

DA*200 with the two TCs stacked...

DA*200 and stacked TCs slideshow
It works for me.... but the cost of the two TCs might put you off. I like this set up because it's light weight and a breeze to carry, and the 2.8 of the 200 by itself is useful in all kinds of situations. I'm sure something like the Sigma 50-500 is a lot less fuss, once you have it where you'e going. But you're not going to get the ƒ2.8 bokeh on your portraits on your K-1 with it.

There was a day a while ago I started with the 200,


went back to the car and got the 1.4, I guess I could have just taken them all when I went the first time



then went back again and exchanged it for the 1.7.


I could have gone back once more and stacked them, but by then I had what i wanted. It's not quite as easy as having a zoom. You need a camera bag, or at least big pockets.

Stacked TCs gives you 476mm at ƒ6.3. Really not to shabby.

Last edited by normhead; 11-23-2016 at 07:02 PM.
11-24-2016, 09:32 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
DA*200 and 1.4 TC



200 x 1.4 slideshow

DA*200 with F 1.7x AF Adapter.

DA*200 and F1.7 AF Adapter slideshow

DA*200 with the two TCs stacked...

DA*200 and stacked TCs slideshow
It works for me.... but the cost of the two TCs might put you off. I like this set up because it's light weight and a breeze to carry, and the 2.8 of the 200 by itself is useful in all kinds of situations. I'm sure something like the Sigma 50-500 is a lot less fuss, once you have it where you'e going. But you're not going to get the ƒ2.8 bokeh on your portraits on your K-1 with it.

There was a day a while ago I started with the 200,


went back to the car and got the 1.4, I guess I could have just taken them all when I went the first time



then went back again and exchanged it for the 1.7.


I could have gone back once more and stacked them, but by then I had what i wanted. It's not quite as easy as having a zoom. You need a camera bag, or at least big pockets.

Stacked TCs gives you 476mm at ƒ6.3. Really not to shabby.
Really nice shots; Norm you have some of the best bird pictures on this forum and basically the same equipment (and bird species) as I do. Looks like the TC will be a very worthwhile purchase for me. I will be on the lookout for a black friday deal tomorrow morning when B&H and Adorama post the deals.

11-24-2016, 11:45 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by jddwoods Quote
Really nice shots; Norm you have some of the best bird pictures on this forum and basically the same equipment (and bird species) as I do. Looks like the TC will be a very worthwhile purchase for me. I will be on the lookout for a black friday deal tomorrow morning when B&H and Adorama post the deals.
He also has a blind, which helps.
He also has skill, which helps even more.

Rupert used to joke that the K-1 his wife was helping finance would make him "a pro like Norm", but that lasted only until the K-1 arrived and Norm continued to deliver superior images.
11-24-2016, 11:56 AM - 2 Likes   #10
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I started just trying to get bird images, then I set up feeders on my porch so I could shoot through the kitchen window, (and a serious mouse in the house problem ensued.) Then I moved the feeders away from the house and got a blind. I believe wildman doesn't have a blind but he can sit still enough not to freak out the birds . I'm a fidgety, always fixing something, if I'm not in a blind I usually freak out the birds. So, it's been a long slow process to get to here. Plus many of my best images happen during migration when the birds will just swarm around me to get to the food, before the other 400 birds that are in my yard do.

Often when I'm waiting for the birds to show up, I'll sit there, thinking, things like "I'm too high up for the ground feeders, how do I fix that? I'm not getting the light at the right angle for contrast ( an you thought lenses provide contrast? lighting provides contrast.), what can I do?" Really, it just goes on and on. No matter how good you have it, you see ways to improve.

The biggest advantage I have over many on the forum, my bird sanctuary is in my back yard and I'm retired. I can go out there every day with decent light. And if the light is good, I'm going to be out there for at least a half hour-45minutes. And that's if no unusual birds have turned up. If there's a bird there that I don't see every day, I'll be out until I either have an image, or the bird has gone.

It took, the constant softness of images like this taken with my Sigma 70-300. The bird is on a completely un-natural store bought porch fixture that just happened to have a small bird feeder hanging on it.


Every nature photographer I've heard or read about, would enjoy their subjects, even if they didn't have a camera.

Probably until I got to this point, I probably wouldn't have benefitted from a better lens. But once I got images like this on a regular basis, it was pretty clear a better lens would improve my images.

These days I wouldn't even keep that image.

This is what I like these days.


Those who watched me on the forum over the years have seen the whole process. So while the DA*200 and TCs was a step in the process, most of the process did not involve buying lenses. And most of it took place over months and years.The Cedar Waxwing shots I posted, I've been trying to get images of that bird for 8 years. I got images with the 70-300 8 years ago and I've always wanted better ones. You can't tell that from the images... and I'm really happy I got the opportunity with good glass, but it took a long time to get to this point. In this case, my wife spotted these birds on her morning run which tends to be about 10 km. Without her "scouting" I wouldn't even have known they were there. It takes a lot more than a lens. It takes luck and perseverance. But if you're up for it, the k-3 DA*200 and a couple TCs is a great combo.

Simple fact, if my wife decides to sleep in and doesn't go for her run, I don't have those images.

Another simple fact, I just love going out sitting in the blind, watching the birdies do bird behaviours. The pictures are a bonus. I often spend an hour or more just finding out what's out there today, before I even start shooting. You have to be a guy who loves doing that kind of stuff, and then you also have to be a guy who will bother taking a camera and figure out how to get the images, which involves feeder placement for the best light angles, setting up so you can get both ground feeders and birds who like feeders up in the air. There are a lot of qualifications for the job.

So buying the TCs will be the easy part.

P.S.

Oh did I mention the $70-$100 a month in bird feed? After year or two you could buy a couple of lenses with that.

Last edited by normhead; 11-24-2016 at 05:39 PM.
11-25-2016, 01:43 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I started just trying to get bird images, then I set up feeders on my porch so I could shoot through the kitchen window, (and a serious mouse in the house problem ensued.) Then I moved the feeders away from the house and got a blind. I believe wildman doesn't have a blind but he can sit still enough not to freak out the birds . I'm a fidgety, always fixing something, if I'm not in a blind I usually freak out the birds. So, it's been a long slow process to get to here. Plus many of my best images happen during migration when the birds will just swarm around me to get to the food, before the other 400 birds that are in my yard do.

Often when I'm waiting for the birds to show up, I'll sit there, thinking, things like "I'm too high up for the ground feeders, how do I fix that? I'm not getting the light at the right angle for contrast ( an you thought lenses provide contrast? lighting provides contrast.), what can I do?" Really, it just goes on and on. No matter how good you have it, you see ways to improve.

The biggest advantage I have over many on the forum, my bird sanctuary is in my back yard and I'm retired. I can go out there every day with decent light. And if the light is good, I'm going to be out there for at least a half hour-45minutes. And that's if no unusual birds have turned up. If there's a bird there that I don't see every day, I'll be out until I either have an image, or the bird has gone.

It took, the constant softness of images like this taken with my Sigma 70-300. The bird is on a completely un-natural store bought porch fixture that just happened to have a small bird feeder hanging on it.


Every nature photographer I've heard or read about, would enjoy their subjects, even if they didn't have a camera.

Probably until I got to this point, I probably wouldn't have benefitted from a better lens. But once I got images like this on a regular basis, it was pretty clear a better lens would improve my images.

These days I wouldn't even keep that image.

This is what I like these days.


Those who watched me on the forum over the years have seen the whole process. So while the DA*200 and TCs was a step in the process, most of the process did not involve buying lenses. And most of it took place over months and years.The Cedar Waxwing shots I posted, I've been trying to get images of that bird for 8 years. I got images with the 70-300 8 years ago and I've always wanted better ones. You can't tell that from the images... and I'm really happy I got the opportunity with good glass, but it took a long time to get to this point. In this case, my wife spotted these birds on her morning run which tends to be about 10 km. Without her "scouting" I wouldn't even have known they were there. It takes a lot more than a lens. It takes luck and perseverance. But if you're up for it, the k-3 DA*200 and a couple TCs is a great combo.

Simple fact, if my wife decides to sleep in and doesn't go for her run, I don't have those images.

Another simple fact, I just love going out sitting in the blind, watching the birdies do bird behaviours. The pictures are a bonus. I often spend an hour or more just finding out what's out there today, before I even start shooting. You have to be a guy who loves doing that kind of stuff, and then you also have to be a guy who will bother taking a camera and figure out how to get the images, which involves feeder placement for the best light angles, setting up so you can get both ground feeders and birds who like feeders up in the air. There are a lot of qualifications for the job.

So buying the TCs will be the easy part.

P.S.

Oh did I mention the $70-$100 a month in bird feed? After year or two you could buy a couple of lenses with that.
You are a generous and modest person - thank you for sharing the details behind the magic.
11-25-2016, 02:35 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
You are a generous and modest person - thank you for sharing the details behind the magic.
Thanks for the kind words.
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