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08-27-2008, 10:56 PM   #1
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Was told not to expect much from an A50/1.7 + 1.7X AF TC ... you tell me?

All shot w/a $50 eBay special SMC Pentax-A 50mm f/1.7, and a $450 eBay special Pentax 1.7x AF TC (I was in a hurry to buy it a year back for a trip, which turned out to be complete unnecessary as I didn't use it on my trip :ugh.... making a 85mm f/2.8 (ish) AF lens. Beauty of the day was using revered 'old glass' pretty much as 'point & shoot', getting focus close but letting the TC do the hard work.

Yes, the TC brings about CA with even the mildest of highlight unless I stop down, and some other problems. But to cut to the chase...

I'm floored by the sharpenss color and contrast I got. Most of these are JPGs right from the camera. I can't remember the last time I used a JPG out of the camera opposed to a JPG made from the PEF. I just don't usually get enough 'punch' to make me happy. I am happy w/these!

Anyway so, hope you like my 'model'... her name is "mrs. m8o" , so... ...try not to be too critical... she wasn't do'n this to get payed! You can't imagine how happy I was she let me take her picture!!!

I'll specify which were spiffed up RAW conversions; otherwise they're JPGs from the camera. These initial two, were from RAW conversions.



Bummer shot was ruined by shake, and glare from a lack of having a hood. Lightroom-ified again. But I did not punch up the color or vividness! I'm impressed.



These next many are right from the camera...

She wasn't happy I made her sit on the remnants of the post... her legs aren't that short. After about 4 shots, she was done w/that.





I cut off her feet... I suk @ this... Only cropped a bit. This leads up to the next two:


Surprised @ the DOF here w/o trying. I'm pretty amazed @ the following two actually, based on my past experience taking shell shots:




All but those two @ the onset were right from the camera. Then these following two were worked over a bit and cropped; but still very close to what the larger JPG was. I actually thought this shot was a miss. I was floored when I looked @ it on my computer:

Cropped to about 2/3 frame


Cropped to about 1/3 frame



All those shot here...



To get to another thing to be concerned with... can be susceptible to flare. That could be that I don't have a hood. It might be because of the old "Skylight Filter" I left on that it came with. Obviously the angle to the light doesn't help. Well, nothing's perfect!



All here... A Lovely Day in Mattituck - 08/27/2008 album | m8o | Fotki.com There's some pics of a really nice Cobra... and my MINI .... A whole bunch of 4 dogs chasing rocks into the water that I probably won't post until tomorrow night... and some more of these:


(straight from the camera again)

Congrats if you got this far!

08-28-2008, 01:19 AM   #2
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Nice pictures....seems a great combination.

I like the MINI also....but I am biased....I am on my third !
08-28-2008, 01:41 AM   #3
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how does the 1.7 AF actually work? stunning photos by the way I really love the first one and the mini shot, thats stunning.
08-28-2008, 03:22 AM   #4
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I don't know what you were told, but if someone were to ask me what I thought, my response is that there are better, less expensive ways to get that focal length and speed. A tamron 28-75 F2.8 comes to mind.

I have the 1.7x AF TC also, and have had it since 1992. I have used it A LOT but generally with my vivitar series 1 70-210 F3.5 and my SMC 300mm F4.

My own opinion is that while it does a very good job, when attached to a good lens, teleconverters in general are best when used with long lenses and are not really intended as "zoom" on a normal lens. That does not mean they don't work, as you have shown, but I approach the need for focal lengths in that area differently

08-28-2008, 04:35 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
I have the 1.7x AF TC also, and have had it since 1992. I have used it A LOT but generally with my vivitar series 1 70-210 F3.5 and my SMC 300mm F4.
Do you have any photos from these combinations?
I have the Tamron 70-210 f3.5 and a SMC 300mm f4 and have been considering purchasing the 1.7x to use with these.
How fast and accurate is AF with it?

Thanks .
08-28-2008, 05:14 AM   #6
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WOW!!!!! those are awesome!!!! except the shake one what a great set up and outcome.
08-28-2008, 05:47 AM   #7
m8o
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Thanx for the comments. Ya, I was surprised.

QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
I don't know what you were told, but if someone were to ask me what I thought, my response is that there are better, less expensive ways to get that focal length and speed. A tamron 28-75 F2.8 comes to mind.
As you can see in my sig, I have that lens. It has spent a good deal of time on my body (few thousand shots probably). While it's brutally sharp, and probably has the contrast on par with this too, and doesn't have the flare problem, CA & fringing problem, [and, and, and, lol], its just not as 'vivid' in color as I found this combo to be. This combo is more compact than even that tamron too which I wanted for the day-trip. A bit of reach, while still quite small.

Reasons behind what I did... My lens coverage range ends @ 75mm. I only have a manual 125mm, wanted AF for this trip, then pop to a 300mm beast... So this combo making me an AF 85mm was perfect. While an "oddity" to do what I did, and certainly pricing differential between the two is jokingly radical, I sometime get into being able to extend utilization of what I have in the manner I did. Felt it worth sharing the times where it works out. I didn't post all the painful ones... with the rims of my MINI's rims slightly "glowing" in purple.
08-28-2008, 05:53 AM   #8
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$450.00 ebay special ?

If we keep complaining maybe Pentax will market again. Maybe not.

BTW, pretty darn good results.

08-28-2008, 08:52 AM   #9
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Well done m80,

seems like this lens likes to be TC'd. I did something similar, putting the Pentax-M 1.7/50 onto a Panagor(Kiron) Tele-Macronet 3x . I did it cause at the time I did not have ND filters and wanted long exposures in that focal length. Turned out it wasn't too bad, this is at f/11 (=150mm f/45), 1/4 crop of the picture,



Lately I've put an MC Revuenon 1.2/55 on a 2XTcon (7-lens MC Kenko), but the results were just what you would expect, a low contrast/colors/anything lens :-(

Good to see people experimenting a little,
Georg (the other)
08-28-2008, 09:20 AM   #10
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m80, those shots are exceptional, I'm very impressed. The hand/shell shots do indeed have stunning color/detail. It looks like you have a FA* 85 there!


.
08-28-2008, 09:43 AM   #11
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Those do look great! FWIW, I have experimented with my 50/1.7 and the Kenko 1.5 TC, which I assume is not as good as your TC. What I found was what I was always told I would find: stopped down, the combo does quite well. But at effective apertures wider than f/4, it was pretty hit and miss. Sharpness OK at best, contrast was pretty low, colors a bit muted and cooled. While PP could address those to some extent (contrast especially), and flare and CA were problems just waiting to happen. Funny thing is, my test shots always made the combo look more promising that it ever did in the field.

Seeing your shots makes me want to give it yet another try...
08-28-2008, 01:06 PM   #12
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m8o, you almost had me fooled, but then BAM, there is was! I reaslised that this thread was just a ruse to post another photo of your mini

You have a beautiful wife who lets you take pictures of her; mine only shares the first of those attributes I love her hair, too!

As for attaching the TC to this lens...why not!? It's all about having fun taking pictures, and if some of them don't suck, then mission accomplished.

The seagull shot is slightly scary, if a little underexposed (1 stop?). The onion rings in the first shot look niiiice...if your Mrs m8o isn't having them, can she pass them over?
08-28-2008, 02:54 PM   #13
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Great shots, I'm impressed, thanks for providing them.

Later on marc talks about the kenko 1.5 and my question to one and all is... how does that stack up against something like the Sigma 17-70 or the Tamron 28-75 at the tele end using a cost-benefit approach?

The kenko is $90 and the zooms are in the $400 range. Somebody with the 50 (like me) could, could get both the kenko AND the DA70 and effectively have 50,70 and 105 for the same cost as a good zoom. If (and that's the point, it's a big IF) the kenko+ prime provides 95%+ of the image quality contrasted with those zooms, it seems like a reasonable tradeoff.

OOPs, correction...my math was off because I confused from a list I had the cost of the Sigma 24-70 macro @$499 instead of the Tamron that's about $150 less... but the logic remains that IF the IQ is close enough (+/- 95%) for the Kenko+primes compared to a comparably priced zoom, the Kenko+primes offers more value for the money.

Is this lens work-around as good as my "dream lineup" 12-24, 31 77? No, of course not, but it costs only a quarter as much. And no, this isn't a case of knowing the price of everything and the value of nothing. It's just a way to build a relatively low-cost range of FL while waiting for my ship to come in so I can buy the dream and really have it covered.
FHPhotographer

Last edited by FHPhotographer; 08-28-2008 at 04:25 PM. Reason: math error
08-28-2008, 04:22 PM   #14
m8o
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Awe shucks... Thanx everyone for the kind words. I agree w/all as to the 'experiment'. Heck, did you see those new Pentax ads? Rule #N... don't follow everyone's rules of photography.

QuoteOriginally posted by pschlute Quote
Nice pictures....seems a great combination.
I like the MINI also....but I am biased....I am on my third !
QuoteOriginally posted by Miserere Quote
m8o, you almost had me fooled, but then BAM, there is was! I reaslised that this thread was just a ruse to post another photo of your mini
Hey, I resemble that remark... I'll see your claim and raise you another!


...and another... no actually, this one's really a shot of rocks! No, no, it's an experiment of the Bokeh of the combo... Ya, that's what it is!

Just goes to prove, sometimes a 'miss', isn't. ....don't delete in the field!!!

QuoteOriginally posted by séamuis Quote
how does the 1.7 AF actually work? stunning photos by the way I really love the first one and the mini shot, thats stunning.
The TC accepts the screw drive, and instead of having gears or just straight thru to an output shaft and passing it onto the lens, itself has a moving lens element. If you attach it to an AF lens, it acts as a manual focus lens. You get focus close then the TC does the rest.


QuoteOriginally posted by Miserere Quote
You have a beautiful wife who lets you take pictures of her; mine only shares the first of those attributes I love her hair, too!
Actually, this is the 1st time my wife ever let me use her as a "Subject"... I was wondering, "what have you done w/my wife?! ...eh, I'll stick w/you instead! "


QuoteOriginally posted by Miserere Quote
As for attaching the TC to this lens...why not!? It's all about having fun taking pictures, and if some of them don't suck, then mission accomplished.

The seagull shot is slightly scary, if a little underexposed (1 stop?). The onion rings in the first shot look niiiice...if your Mrs m8o isn't having them, can she pass them over?
Yes, the crop of the seagull definitely gets 'darker' when shrunk for internet viewing than when viewed within Lightroom full screen. I purposely underexposed not to blow the highlights, but there is a lot of the histogram range w/o any pixels. I reworked another one, cropped to almost 100%.


In retrospect, this is "share worthy" too...
08-28-2008, 07:06 PM   #15
m8o
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QuoteOriginally posted by FHPhotographer Quote
OOPs, correction...my math was off because I confused from a list I had the cost of the Sigma 24-70 macro @$499 instead of the Tamron that's about $150 less... but the logic remains that IF the IQ is close enough (+/- 95%) for the Kenko+primes compared to a comparably priced zoom, the Kenko+primes offers more value for the money.
I haven't used the Sigma, I have that Tamron. In my time here on this forum I've come to recognize while there's love for the Sigma, there's about an order of magnitude more love for the Tamron.

What I'll say is the fast zooms "makes much more sense". I don't want to make any allusions that this combo I was playing with is a "win win". As was covered above, you really will need good conditions and light, because you must stop down to control fringing; you must set EV comp to -1/3 or -2/3, because if you overexpose, you'll get fringing. You can't expect to shoot at f/2.8 - f/3.5 and get great results in all instances; might be ok if there are no bright highlights... my sunflower shots may have worked at wide apertures. With the Sigma and Tammy, you can. I knew I was going to have a bright sunny day, so knew I could travel small and light with this combo, that gave me a bit of reach too.

oh ya, Miserere, she wasn't touching those onion rings... no way no how. I left you a few tho, sorry you missed'm.
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