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04-09-2009, 08:33 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikem Quote
@nanok I checked out your samples. Nature is very forgiving with distortion! You could have fooled me with the un-defished shot and I wouldn't have guessed it came from a fisheye.
it fooled me too. that's what i mean when i say you will not always need to defish. usually a horizon, trees, etc in the frame will mean you need to defish

QuoteQuote:
I've read some bad things about the sharpness of the zenitar (Ken Rockwell). In other places some users mentioned disassembling the focus ring to adjust the focus which greatly improved sharpness at larger apertures. What's your experience been?
ken rockwell: honestly, and with no disrespect to the man: who cares?
i have read about focus adjusting too, i have not had this issue. some people say this is just a qc issue (and it is a simple operation to do), it is also said to be rare lately. the issue mentioned is usually related to infinity focus. also worth noting is that some people seem to forget that the clear rear filter is part of the optical design somehow, the lens will behave strange with no filter.

QuoteQuote:
Will the K10D meter with the zenitar? Do you have to shoot in manual or can you shoot in Av and just set the camera and lens to the same aperture?
yes, pentax cameras will meter with anything actually (including no lens ), as they should. the metering is not accurate though, just as with any smc-m (stopped down metering, has been discussed here)

av is possible, but only if removing the aperture lever (very simple to do), it will mean the lens is stopped down all the time, which i do not like much. it is basically an smc-m (or pentax-k) compatible lens, so "non-A"

QuoteQuote:
@ryno Oooh that sounds very cool. Fisheye zoom with filter option could let me have my cake and eat it too.


This sub - $200 zenitar is sounding very tempting. It would leave me with a lot less guilt =]. The manual operation wouldn't be so bad; I wouldn't be using it for anything that's moving. I know I'm somewhat dissatisified with my 50mm f/1.7 A since b/c of the focusing issue. But that lens has razor thin dof and I'm trying to shoot people.
[/quote]

shooting people with the zenitar is not so hard really (however i almost never do, i am not too much into portraits, let alone wideangle ones ).

btw, if that nifty fifty makes you unhappy, no need to torment yourself, swing it over my way

seriously, the zenitar is tempting, but it's good to understand the pitfalls too before going for it. i love the little russian, but i understand it is surely not for everybody. a good thing about it, otoh, is that being so cheap it tends to keep it's price quite well.

ps: the zenitar has "MADE IN RUSSIA" boldly written on it. how cool is that :-D

04-09-2009, 09:09 PM   #17
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I think I'm pretty much sold on this whole zenitar thing. What's not to love (besides the manual operation...)?

It seems eBay is the only place I'm finding this lens right now. Any other vendors out there? Best price on eBay is $185 shipped.
04-09-2009, 09:17 PM   #18
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185 shiped sounds good (the price of the zenitar has actually incresed in the past year or so, it used to be about 150). hold on before pulling the trigger though: send me a pm with your email address, and i will dig out some smaples (fulls size) so you can decide if it's acceptable for you (it will take a while though, i really should be sleeping ). also read the thread about stopped down metering with the k10d, and decide if you can live with that (or are willing to get a replacement focusing screen)
04-09-2009, 09:20 PM   #19
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This might go on my birthday wishlist or I might spring for it before then =]. I'll look at that thread first, good idea. PM sent.

04-09-2009, 09:26 PM   #20
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https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-dslr-discussion/21530-k10d-smc-m-mettering.html
04-09-2009, 10:08 PM   #21
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I read the thread on stop down metering.

How have you found stop down metering to work with the zenitar and the K10D? How do you compensate for the error?

Maybe it'd be best to just forget about AE and use the digital preview and histogram to get a proper exposure. I think I should go out and shoot this way with one of my current lenses to see how crazy it drives me .

Autofocus and AE are nice, but do I want to pay almost $250 for the privelege? I could do so much with that $250...
04-10-2009, 04:45 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikem Quote
I read the thread on stop down metering.

How have you found stop down metering to work with the zenitar and the K10D? How do you compensate for the error?

Maybe it'd be best to just forget about AE and use the digital preview and histogram to get a proper exposure. I think I should go out and shoot this way with one of my current lenses to see how crazy it drives me .

Autofocus and AE are nice, but do I want to pay almost $250 for the privelege? I could do so much with that $250...
you will want to pay for the privilege if without it you cannot take your shot (or cannot enjoy taking it), be careful with this detail! 200dolars spent for nothing to get you only frustration are a lot more money that 500 dolars spent to get you what you want

how crazy... hmm. well, it does not "nail it", most of the time, that's for sure. however, you must keep in mind a few factors: i am used to guessing exposure (not precisely, but enough to get somewhere in the range), because i have been shooting film (including without a meter at all) for quite a while, and i am using my zenitar on a tripod most of the time, and taking my time.

using preview and histogram works, you only need to adjust a bit most of the time (with nikon, that is _all_ you have, you are on your own ); one strategy might be to find the aperture at which it meters correctly (or choose an aperture and compensate) and quickly shift to an equivalent exposure after metering on that aperture (aperture goes up, shutter goes down, same number of steps, or the other way around)

almost all my current lenses are of this kind now. not sure how it happened, it just did. i love them all
04-10-2009, 04:58 AM   #23
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hmmm

just tested again with my k20d. the reading seems to be almost spot on, ranging from 2.8 to 16, with my zenitar. did the new firmware upgrade change something? i need to test further today

04-10-2009, 08:36 AM   #24
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If I understand correctly, I can simulate what it will be like metering wise with the zenitar by using any lens with an aperture ring and taking it off "A", correct?

I'm a photographic novice. I've only been shooting dSLR for a little over a year so exposure isn't ingrained in my head. I certainly understand the exposure triangle just fine, so maybe finding an aperture that is pretty accurate and adjusting from there could work. I don't know how much I'll be around the rest of the weekend, thanks for your help.

Any other zenitar users out there want to give me their opinion?
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