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06-20-2012, 11:19 PM   #1
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split screen for K-5

Hi, does anybody know if Pentax MX split screen can be fitted into K-5 to obtain functional split focusing screen? A friend of mine does have dead MX and i think about utilizing its screen if it's possible. Or could other Pentax film cameras provide more suitable split screen for K-5? Somewhere on this forum I recently read some recommendations on Pentax MZ-M screen for this purpose.
I have a legacy lenses, which are great (85/1.8 and 20/4) but unfortunately with a huge backfocus on K-5, so I can't rely on focus confirmation and focus adjustment is impractical, since this would mess the focus confirmation on my other lenses. 1.3 viewfinder enlarger helps a bit but still split screen would be great help for quick focusing.
Can you help me with some info, please?

06-20-2012, 11:54 PM   #2
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Resizing a MZ-M screen does work, but the problem you currently have is that your focus screen is not properly shimmed.
If you get backfocus while manually focusing, then the focus screen is not properly calibrated (the mount-screen distance is different form the mount-sensor distance). No amount of AF calibration will solve the problem, you'll have to replace the focus screen shims.

Now, be aware that nearly all focus screens are unable to properly render small DoF. As they are in fact Fresnel lenses (not ground glass anymore!), optimized to handle kit lenses and small apertures, they simply cannot show the true DoF with fast lenses.
My counsel is to ditch the split screen idea and move over to a Canon EE-S screen (the S-Type screen over at FocusingScreen.com). It does wonders with fast lenses and stop-down metering (do a search on the forum, there is a big thread going on).
06-21-2012, 01:54 AM   #3
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Hi thanks for advice....i read about Canon EE-S screens here in forum and maybe that's a way to go. But it doesn't have the split screen, so I need to rely completely on my vision, whereas maybe split screen would be quicker to focus, or not? I mean if i have enough time, i can pretty much nail the focus even with K-5 screen, however in some situations i need to focus quickly - that's where focus indication would normally help. Or split screen. But if canon EE-S is really that good it is worthy to consider. It is very expensive though...
06-21-2012, 04:15 AM   #4
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(disclaimer: following is my pure own opinion, after trying a bunch of split screens in my succession of cameras)

Well, for one, split screens are good with lines... But try one on faces (for portraits), and you'll find they are not that good!
Then, you are stuck with focus-recompose, as (obviously) you have to focus in the center...
Last, they screw up metering pretty badly, and stop-down metering (such as with m42 and PK-m lenses) can become a real pain.

The EE-S screen allows you to focus anywhere on the screen. Being able to accurately render a f/1.6 DoF, in-focus areas really pop up at you, and focusing is really a breeze.
Last, stop-down metering is truly linear with the ee-s. You pay for this with a slightly darker viewfinder with slow lenses, but it's well worth the price IMO...

06-21-2012, 05:43 AM   #5
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Sigh, just ordered the jinfinance screen last week. Its still on its way. Wish I would have know this... although I didn't have any issues with focusing on the eye for portraits using a friends k5 with katzeye(no optibrite). Guess I need to run my own battery of tests to see what works best for me.
06-21-2012, 07:17 AM   #6
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Actually, I personally have had no problem focusing on faces using the katzeye. Yes, straight lines are better, but there are enough demarketable (is that a word?) areas on a human face (eyelid/eyeball juxtaposition comes to mind) that slit prism focus screens can use.

NaCl(ymmv as always)H2O
06-21-2012, 01:10 PM   #7
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so just to make sure...is this one the EE-S screen :
Focusing Screen

?
06-21-2012, 01:14 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by vrrattko Quote
so just to make sure...is this one the EE-S screen :
Focusing Screen

?
>>Yep

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