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12-27-2011, 12:47 AM   #1
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K-5 Extreme Macro Help

Greetings Pentaxers... Pentaxians?

I'm still in the decision making process of my DSLR upgrade to come, indecisively swaying back and forth from the D7000 to the K-5. One of the many variables at work is the possibility of adapting the K mount of the K-5 to hook up to the F mount of the Nikon PB-4 Bellows, unless someone knows of some other tilt-shift bellows that will fit Pentax bodies, adapters or none. Another issue is the availability of auto extension tubes, as in those that will communicate with the latest "APS-C sensor only" lenses. I've just read through this thread

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-camera-field-accessories/20137-aut...sion-tube.html

but can find neither the Pro Optics nor the Kenko Uniplus sets for sale... anywhere.

I'd also like to hear some insights on the merits of the SMCP-DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited AF vs. the Normal smc P-D FA 50mm f/2.8 Macro AF. The application is mushroom photography, so large working distances are not necessary. Going back to the extension tube question, it would appear that each of these lenses has an aperture ring and both MF and AF modes, thereby allowing for manual adjustment of each. If this is the case, my need for auto extension tubes with electronic coupling is far less of an issue.

Thanks in advance,

-Danny

12-27-2011, 01:14 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by newmy51 Quote
I'd also like to hear some insights on the merits of the SMCP-DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited AF vs. the Normal smc P-D FA 50mm f/2.8 Macro AF. The application is mushroom photography, so large working distances are not necessary. Going back to the extension tube question, it would appear that each of these lenses has an aperture ring and both MF and AF modes, thereby allowing for manual adjustment of each. If this is the case, my need for auto extension tubes with electronic coupling is far less of an issue.
The limited lens doesn't have an aperture ring, and if you ask me it's way too wide for comfortable macro work. If you'll be using the lens primarily for macro shots, then the 50mm would be the way to go.

PentaxWebstore.com: Auto Extension Tub B for 35mm (100mm)
PENTAX Auto Extension Tube K 100mm reviews - Pentax Camera Accessories: Database and Reviews

If you want to spend 200 bucks on a hollow tube, there you go

Adam
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12-27-2011, 01:37 AM   #3
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Thanks for the prompt reply, Adam. To clarify, the aesthetics of the 35 vs the 50 was not my main concern. On the K-5's APS-C sensor the 35 will be (roughly) a 50 equivalent, which doesn't at all seem prohibitively wide for macro. I know a few other fungus photographers who have taken a strong liking to that focal length in particular, specifically via the Tokina 35mm f2.8 Macro, and though I've no experience of my own to compare with, I'm taking their word for it. I'm much more interested to know how they differ in specifications and overall performance.

Another point of clarification: I'm interested in a tube set (not a single), which apparently needn't necessarily have contacts for AF, TTL and aperture functionality if used in combination with the 50mm f/2.8. The contactless "hollow tube" lineup looks to be considerably less pricey, with some going for less than $20 (as it should be).

On the topic of the PB-4, is a K mount to F mount adapter all it would take?
12-27-2011, 02:14 AM   #4
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You can expect the same great IQ from both lenses, though whenever I took macros with the 35 I usually ended up touching the subject with the front of the lens.…

12-29-2011, 02:18 AM   #5
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The 35 mm macro lens will come really close to the mushrooms. Mushrooms will not run away, but a little bit more working distance is always fine!

Novoflex and Hama offer(ed) tilt/shift bellows for Pentax. If you already have a tilt shift Nikon bellows go for it. There is no need for putting a macro lens infront of a bellows. Typically enlarging lenses work even better - check out the Novoflex pages:
Novoflex - Tilt-/Shift Bellows
Great stuff that does not come cheap.
12-29-2011, 08:54 AM   #6
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so would this:

Macro Nikon F Lens to Pentax PK Mount Adapter K-x K-7 | eBay

effectively hook my K-5 up to a PB-4?
12-29-2011, 12:32 PM   #7
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This may not be what you are looking for, but I recommend an older version of a Pentax macro lens. It is a 50mm f2.8 SMC Macro lens. It has a KA mount, thus works with the K5 without having to manually stop down. An object a little over 1.6 inches fills the viewfinder. It is not a 1:1, closer to a 1:1.7 according to my calculations with the smaller sensors that we have. This lens with the K5 has similar performance to my now sold Canon 5DII with 100mm f2.8 L series macro lens. Pentax Forums website reviews the lens. I got mine from Ebay for about $150, although there does not seem to be any there right now. Pentax-A 50mm F2.8 Macro Reviews - A Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database
12-29-2011, 01:04 PM   #8
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I have done extensive macro work, and I have both the Pentax-M 50 F4 and the M 100 F4 lenses. In most cases I found that the 100mm lens works better. I get much more distance to work and position lights, flashes, reflectors, etc.

Regarding tilting bellows, Minolta has one, I believe Auto Bellows III Tilt (something like that). Also Spiratone had a very sophisticated one like a miniature view camera. They are both rather rare but they show on auction once every blue moon at high prices.

If you main reason for tilting bellows is to increase the DOF that you may want to consider stacking software. With that you’ll definitely need a set of focusing rails.

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