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08-20-2012, 05:46 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by dms Quote
I suggest taking some pictures like trees with lots of narrow branches w/o leaves, or similar items--like wires--at fart distance and focusing by hand.
and remember to hold your breath


I'm sorry... I wrong word typo like that with the best of them, but that's just funny

08-20-2012, 07:49 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ex Finn. Quote
Lots of CA and haze, is there a filter on that lens by any chance?.
I was thinking the same thing.
08-20-2012, 08:07 PM   #18
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Wow, first off, these are incredibly active forums. I expected just a couple responses but you guys gave me loads to work with.

I will work my way down the page and try and answer everyone.
I have taken all your advice and am already seeing better results with the pictures, so thank you from the outset.

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twitch - My initial reason for using the chart was for a perceived AF problem. I was just not pleased with the results I was seeing even in the areas that were "in focus." And that chart is correct at an exact 45 degree angle.

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DSims - My conclusion was it was back focusing also, but I took another round of pictures outside in the sunlight today to confirm. I was also very precise with my angle measurements and distances.
First shooting in natural light seemed to make a big difference when PP'ing the photos. Much less, if any CA and it looks sharper with no other changes.

I found that with everything set to defaults, it looked like this:


I turned on, then slowly adjusted the "AF Fine Adjustment" toward the + side 2 clicks at a time.
I am using the single point focus directed exactly between the "u" and "s" of Focus in the center of the picture.

At the max +10 of adjustment I get this.


It is noticeably better, but even at the max setting it still looks like it has some back focus issues?

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elliott - I am using the single point focus and put in exactly between the "u" and "s" of Focus in the center of the picture. So if it is still choosing the wrong location to focus, I think it would be a problem with the hardware.

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johnyates - After a fair amount of testing it does appear to be back focusing. Isn't this something Pentax should resolve without me having to pay for new shims and have to install them myself?
On an old camera that was out of warranty I would certainly take on the job, but it just doesn't feel right to have to do it myself with a brand new camera.
Could there also be something out of adjustment with the lens?

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dms - I will try and find some pictures with more fine detail in them.
I took this picture of an oil painting to look at the brush stokes, so it has some detail to view.
This is also after adjusting the "AF Fine Adjustment" to the max +10
Also a 1:1 crop:


After working with the AF Fine Adjustments and getting some tripod pictures with natural light, I am feeling much better about the whole setup!

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twitch - A large part of it was the CA, which went away when I used natural light. Otherwise, it just didn't seem as crisp as I had seen in many other photos posted here and elsewhere with other K5s. I also realized I had never really PP anyone else’s photos, and what I was seeing in a 1:1 crop might very well have been what some of the example photos looked like if you PP'd them. So maybe just more learning on my part.

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Kameraten - This is my first DSLR. I shot with a film SLR for many years, and then had some higher end compact cameras since then. My last camera was a Canon Pro1, which allowed for a fair amount of creativity while still being a little more compact. The sensor in it had degraded significantly so it was time to move up. I sold it to a friend who is just using it as a point and shoot for her business, for which it will do just fine.

I think it has been a combination of a back focus issue, along with needing natural light for PP'ing.

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Calsan - I don't think I looked at very many 1:1 images taken with the K5, and those that I did probably weren't this lens and I wasn't really looking at it as critically as I do with my own pictures.
I do think I have taken some decent shots, and when I am not PP'ing they look pretty good sharpness wise.

I have reset all the settings and until a couple days ago hadn't actually changed anything major, just took a bunch of pictures.

I think part of my problem is I am first a "computer guy" so I am probably over-analyzing the pictures, because it can be done. While I think there is a little back focus issue actually seen, I probably just need to not PP and just get better at taking pictures with a very high quality camera.

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Ex Finn. - The CA (I had to look up what that meant) is a large part of the "out of focus" issue to me. It seems it is most prominent when using a halogen light. I tried a couple more pictures today with only incandescent, and then natural light and the CA seemed to almost completely disappear.
Is there a way to minimize or eliminate the CA under certain types of lights, if it is only present under them? Or do I just avoid Halogens if at all possible.

There is no filter on the lens. It seemed most people don't believe in the standard UV filter, so I didn't get one.
I will probably get a circular polarizer later, but for now nothing.

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Rondec - From the live view they look very sharp. when I manual focus, I can't seem to get it to look any better. I think the difference is very small, and as I have read through all the responses and done further testing, I think I am very overly critical of the pictures. I think there still is a small back focus issue, but not something you would normally see on anything but extreme macro wide open shots.

-----------

JinDesu - I took a picture of a painting. There is a 1:1 crop of it higher up. This was after dialing the AF Fine Adjustment to +10.


What is it about angles that can cause CA? It also appears that it doesn't like things lit with just halogen lights. As natural light and incans didn't show the CA really at all. Maybe it just needs more light?

I sold my old powershot (Canon Pro1) just before buying this camera.

-----------
-----------
-----------

I went back and grabbed a few photos from the last few days and when I convert them to jpegs and at screen viewing size, it's much harder to find fault with softness.
I haven't done anything to these in Lightroom except convert from RAW and resize to something more viewable.
They aren't the best shots, but looking at them this way I think I mostly need to stop PP'ing and just get better at photography.







08-20-2012, 08:48 PM   #19
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I've had some experience with AF problems.
1. I bought a K-5 which focussed perfectly in daylight, even dim natural light, but showed severe front focus in tungsten light. I did not persevere with this camera, I returned it because I was not confident it could be repaired.
2. I bought a DA 18-135mm, which had severe but consistent back focus. It was dead on at +10 AF Adjust with my K20D, unuseable on my K-x. I used it like this for a couple of months because I needed it for a trip to Paris. I finally sent it to Pentax Canada for calibration, along with my K20D, and it came back focussing perfectly on both cameras.

Best of luck with your particular issue. I suggest you return the lens for calibration under warranty. They may ask for your camera at the same time, that's what Pentax Canada likes to do. They had my misfocussing FA 35mm for a long time and wouldn't work on it until I sent a body.

08-20-2012, 08:53 PM   #20
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Out of focus areas present CA (because of color shift) much more than in focus areas, and an angled subject will have out of focus areas in front (and behind) the point of focus. As such, the chromatic aberrations can seem to overwhelm the image - I noticed this in my Tamron 90mm when shooting macro shots that were practically perpendicular to my sensor plane.

This is why I prefer shooting a flat subject parallel to my sensor plane - and adjusting the microadjustments until I get the sharpest image - I won't get distracted by the angled ruler.
08-21-2012, 02:41 AM   #21
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I must say you're getting some absolutely beautiful color out of that lens!

QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
Best of luck with your particular issue. I suggest you return the lens for calibration under warranty. They may ask for your camera at the same time, that's what Pentax Canada likes to do. They had my misfocussing FA 35mm for a long time and wouldn't work on it until I sent a body.
Yes, if it's so far off that the +10 adjustment still isn't enough, you should send it in (and may, unfortunately have to send both body and lens, regardless of the country you're in). But you can already see you're getting some really nice images - just need to get the focus a little more accurate. I don't imagine you could get this kind of subject isolation (such as the first shot of the bride) with your Canon Pro1.
08-21-2012, 11:13 AM   #22
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I don't believe you are over analyzing this at all. Just look, by your trials from the suggestions here, you've narrowed down the problem - good work!

While you are saying that you may possibly live with it the way it is, and the photos you have now posted do look very good, myself, knowing that it still isn't as perfect as it could be, would send the camera lens in for calibration. The worst part of this is that you would be without your camera/lens for 2-3 weeks.

The official Pentax repair center is C.R.I.S which is in Arizona. I had to send my K-5 in under warranty for AF issues, and they were quick with the adjustment and am super pleased with the outcome. Below is their website where you fill out an on-line form and send it in. I would highly suggest sending both the camera and lens in together to ensure the best calibration result.

Camera Repair by CRIS Camera Services: Digital Camera Repair: Canon, Fuji, Nikon, Pentax, Ricoh, Sigma
08-21-2012, 12:56 PM   #23
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Well I am sending it back to Pentax for calibration.

I find it very poor form that they won't send a shipping label for in warranty repairs. It will cost about $15 to ship it, and I am only sending it back because of a problem with their equipment that they sold me.
Plus they don't have RMA numbers or a work order open before you ship it, so you pretty much just hope that they find your instructions clear enough, and it gets to the right department.
After working with many tech support systems, they seem like they really don't have their act together. Shame on Pentax.

08-21-2012, 01:05 PM   #24
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Yeah, paying for the shipping to them sucks. But after they receive it, you can track your equipments progress in their system on-line - pretty neat feature. Wait a couple days after you ship it then log into the site and you will see exactly what stage of repair it is in.

And yes, there is a repair order generated before you ship it. Once you fill out the on-line form, you will print a copy of the repair order to include in the box. Also, you are instructed to put the repair order number on the shipping label.

Make sure you fill out the on-line form before you ship it!
08-21-2012, 01:46 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by stormtech Quote
Yeah, paying for the shipping to them sucks. But after they receive it, you can track your equipments progress in their system on-line - pretty neat feature. Wait a couple days after you ship it then log into the site and you will see exactly what stage of repair it is in.

And yes, there is a repair order generated before you ship it. Once you fill out the on-line form, you will print a copy of the repair order to include in the box. Also, you are instructed to put the repair order number on the shipping label.

Make sure you fill out the on-line form before you ship it!
Wow, less and less impressed with their "Customer Service".

I called and after talking with them a bit I said i was just going to fill out the web form to submit problems, he said not to bother because it doesn't work any more! It's been broken for a while, and they just haven't removed it from their website. Which also means you can't track it any more, and you don't get a repair number before you ship. You would think this was a mom and pop store that was just getting their website up and running? The customer service people also seemed like they would rather be doing anything other than dealing with support issues.
Is this normal for Pentax support?

-----------------

I just realized you were talking about CRIS support. I was dealing with PentaxImaging directly.
I will call CRIS and see if I fair better.
08-21-2012, 02:35 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by dms Quote
...at fart distance....
I've heard of "spitting distance", but this is a new one...
08-21-2012, 02:40 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by KPrime Quote
I find it very poor form that they won't send a shipping label for in warranty repairs. It will cost about $15 to ship it, and I am only sending it back because of a problem with their equipment that they sold me..
It's not a Pentax thing. Most places do not cover shipping, even for warranty work. Some ask for payment to return the item ($6.50 on a $19.99 fan). Standard procedure for the last 100 years.
08-21-2012, 04:37 PM   #28
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I guess I am just spoiled from our vendors then. I do a large number of RMA's for work, and I would say about 90% of them are paid for by the vendor. Even stuff that I would expect to pay for, out of warranty or customer caused damage. Every now and then we end up paying for something, but usually it's something I would expect, not something brand new with a manufacture's defect.

I think it mostly comes down to, is it really worth pissing of a customer who is buying thousands of dollars worth of your product and then ask them to pay more for a manufacture's problem. It's a good way to lose repeat buyers.

I just hope everything goes smoothly with the rest of the return.
08-21-2012, 04:37 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
It's not a Pentax thing. Most places do not cover shipping, even for warranty work. Some ask for payment to return the item ($6.50 on a $19.99 fan). Standard procedure for the last 100 years.
Your age is showing
08-21-2012, 05:41 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by nulla Quote
Your age is showing
Yep. I also work in CS :-)
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