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09-16-2008, 07:53 PM   #1
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50-135* too much for

the K100D Super?

okay so after reading so much about how great this DA* lens is... I 'm tempted to get it, especially after I read that portraits are great at 75-100 mm.

I have a few questions:

1) is this too good a lens for my K100D Super? (I got this to take pics of my newborn but now that I discovered a love of taking pictures, I regret not getting the K10)

2) Is some of the softness I'm getting bad shooting, indoor lighting (despite my 50mm 1.4 lens) or 6MP? In other words, maybe the lens won't help.

3) What lens filter do folks recommend for all around use,e.g. primarily to protect the lens itself.

Thanks.

09-16-2008, 08:17 PM   #2
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some of the softness you're getting could be the result of shooting the 50 wide open. at 1.4 the depth of field is very thin, so not a lot of your picture would be in focus. Also, the 50 1.4 is a little soft at 1.4, but sharpens up closed down a stop or two.

I don't think the 50-135 is 'too much' for the K100d. a lens invenstment is almost always smarter than a camera investment.

As for a protective filter, I'm one of the brave few who don't filter, but when I did I just used a UV filter. 20-30 bucks, depending on size.
09-16-2008, 11:06 PM   #3
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If you only own one lens it should be this one. Doesn't matter if you're shooting at 2MP or 14MP... everyone will appreciate the quality of this lens. If you stick with pentax then you will always have this lens.
I run a cheap $20 Tiffen UV filter on mine. Of all my lenses (and I only shoot * series lenses) this is by far my favorite.
As for your 50mm... even when you buy a lens that someone has told you is "tack sharp... even wide open" - never shoot it wide open if you can help it. Generally you need a really good reason to shoot a lens wide open and there are only 2 such reasons that I have.
1. I want a really narrow depth of field to draw attention to my subject
2. I am desperately short on light and willing to sacrifice a lot of "in focus" area for proper exposure
09-16-2008, 11:17 PM   #4
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How are you shooting, manual or auto focus?

09-17-2008, 01:14 AM   #5
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It would be a perfect companion for your Super.
09-17-2008, 11:29 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by laissezfaire Quote
2) Is some of the softness I'm getting bad shooting, indoor lighting (despite my 50mm 1.4 lens) or 6MP?
Hard to say without seeing samples. But at this point, my money is on the filter you are presumably using on your 50/1.4. Certainly a 6MP sensor is capable of recording sharp images, unless you're trying to blow them up larger than the format supports (rg, 8x10 should be fine, 11x14 too, 18x124 maybe you'd start to notice issues).
09-17-2008, 07:43 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Damn Brit Quote
How are you shooting, manual or auto focus?
auto focus. indoor shots, not a lot of light. I live in an old dark house.

I'll try manual, if that is where you're going.

I got a couple of books, "Understanding Exposure" by Peterson and "Digital Photography" by Shelby. What a horrible sense of humor the latter has, but he does point out a couple of things to getting "tack sharp" pictures:

1) use a tripod, an expensive one
2) use a remote shutter or delayed shutter / mirror lock. I don't think the K100D Super has a mirror lock feature.
3) turn off IS when using the tripod (the manual also recommends this)

I have made the mistake already of shooting aperture priority, WIDE open, thinking this would help me in low light situations. I also feel I'm getting too much noise at ISO 800, so I'm tempted to auto ISO only 200 - 400 which is a shame.

Should I start using Shutter priority at 1/125 or more to get sharper pictures in low light?

In bright indoor light, I can shoot at F2.8, ISO 200, 1/60 and got a very crisp shot, which is consistent with those that say I should close this up a bit as opposed to shooting 1.4 or 2.0.

The problem is low light as well! The magazines suggest turning up the ISO, but I can't stand the noise, especially in the bokeh.
09-17-2008, 07:45 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Hard to say without seeing samples. But at this point, my money is on the filter you are presumably using on your 50/1.4. Certainly a 6MP sensor is capable of recording sharp images, unless you're trying to blow them up larger than the format supports (rg, 8x10 should be fine, 11x14 too, 18x124 maybe you'd start to notice issues).
I'm not using a filter on the 50 1.4, but would love any suggestions you have for general use for any lens shooting condition (to protect the lens more than anything).

Thanks.

09-17-2008, 08:49 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by laissezfaire Quote

1) use a tripod, an expensive one
2) use a remote shutter or delayed shutter / mirror lock. I don't think the K100D Super has a mirror lock feature.
3) turn off IS when using the tripod (the manual also recommends this)
remote shutter should automatically switch your SR/IS off...
09-17-2008, 09:28 PM   #10
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Bodies come and go, good glass lasts forever. The DA*50-135mm is exceptional, if you can afford it, get it.
09-17-2008, 10:23 PM   #11
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They'll last forever on current bodies.Ok but this lens will not work on a FF body, neither will the 16-50mm so I am wondering wether to keep them or not...
09-18-2008, 08:05 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by laissezfaire Quote
I have made the mistake already of shooting aperture priority, WIDE open, thinking this would help me in low light situations. I also feel I'm getting too much noise at ISO 800, so I'm tempted to auto ISO only 200 - 400 which is a shame.

Should I start using Shutter priority at 1/125 or more to get sharper pictures in low light?
The mode you are in doesn't not affect the picture one bit. What matters is the actual shutter speed, aperture, and ISO you end up with. A shutter speed of 1/125 with an aperture of f/1.4 and ISO 400 will produce *exactly* the same picture whether you get there by Av mode, Tv mode, M mode, or any other mode.

So I'm not sure why you called it a "mistake" to shoot Av with aperture wide open - that's pretyt much the normal way most people deal with low light. If the camera chose too slow a shutter speed - thus encouraging shake and also making the scene not *not* like low light - then apply EV compensation to get it more where you want it. I personally find M mode far more convenient than either Av or Tv.

Now, in my experience with "low light", 1/125 just ain't gonna happen at ISO 400, or even 800. I mean, you can make the camera take the picture, but it's going to be underexposed. But if you've got enough light to work with to get a good exposure at 1/125 and ISO 400 - either with aperture wide open or not - great. But I promise it won't matter if you use Av, Tv, or M.

QuoteQuote:
In bright indoor light, I can shoot at F2.8, ISO 200, 1/60 and got a very crisp shot, which is consistent with those that say I should close this up a bit as opposed to shooting 1.4 or 2.0.
Well, sure - *if* you have enough light to work with, lower ISO and slightly smaller apertures is always better. But in low light, you settle for what you can get - and that usually means wide open and the highest ISO you can stand if you are trying to handhold And no, the picture *won't* look as good as one taken in good light. That's just how it is. If you want clean results, use a tripod and the same aperture ISO you would in good light - or just add more light (eg, flash).

QuoteQuote:
The magazines suggest turning up the ISO, but I can't stand the noise, especially in the bokeh.
You *do* shoot RAW and know how to work the noise reduction tools, right? If not, that's really step one. But unfortunately, noise is just part of life when shooting handheld in low light without flash.
09-18-2008, 08:06 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by laissezfaire Quote
would love any suggestions you have for general use for any lens shooting condition (to protect the lens more than anything).
Be careful. That's about it. Put a lens cap on when not using it. A hood can help too.
09-18-2008, 08:45 AM   #14
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IME a K20D with your existing lenses will provide far more resolution than a 50-135mm on K100DS. I brought my K100DS and 50mm 1.4 to a local shop one day. I compared three primes and a 16-50mm zoom on both cameras. What I saw is that no lens upgrade on a K100 will make it as sharp as a K20. Aside from resolution, the K20D allows extreme cropping, has better high ISO performance and far superior handling (controls, frames per second). I'd keep using the 50mm and upgrade the body if it's resolution you're after.

OTOH, the softness you're talking about with the K100DS/50mm is not a fault of the lens or the camera. Here's a baby photo, taken at f/2.0 with my 50mm and K100DS. You'll notice the baby's eye nearest the camera is in focus, but the other eye is not. That's just what happens with such a wide aperture and shallow dof.

09-18-2008, 09:11 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by laissezfaire Quote
I have a few questions:

1) is this too good a lens for my K100D Super? (I got this to take pics of my newborn but now that I discovered a love of taking pictures, I regret not getting the K10)
There is no such thing as a "too good lens for any camera......". On the contrary, I've found that with my *istD, all my glass seems to perform nicely, but with my K20D, some of my glass is showing not so sharp results.

The DA*50-135/2.8 is a superb lens and one you can cherish for years while upgrading camera bodies from your Super and far beyond the K20D in the future.

Robert B
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