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02-11-2012, 08:10 PM   #61
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Karlito

I already had a 28mm M and a 50 1.7 lens when I purchased the DA 35 with my K-r. Personally I think you would probably miss the 50 if you sold it to buy the 35. My recommendations would be to learn your camera and the lenses you have and if necessary save and buy the 35 in the near future. One does not need all the lenses at once in fact it is better to get them gradually learning the ones you have and coming to know the ones you need, or at least want really badly. The 70-200 covers such a different range than the 35 that only you know if you need it or not. I am personally more of a long lens than a wide lens shooter whereas my wife is the opposite so it is really up to you to find that out through photographing more and more.

Take a look at the prices of some of the Canon and Nikon lenses, then the Leica lenses and the Pentax lenses will seem like real bargains But just like it takes years to learn the craft for many of us it takes years (decades) to get the lenses you want. Keep at it but do not look for a silver bullet. As your skill level improves the less capable lenses become better but also you are more able to take advantage of the better lenses.

02-11-2012, 08:15 PM   #62
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Karlito, I was a little disappointed with the focus on my Kr, I compared the same image taken in live view and AF using the finder and the live view image was sharper, I adjusted the Auto focus using " AF fine adjustment" menu C-2 item 21 until they matched, then fine tuned the focus more comparing image to image until I got the best image using the in camera image comparison. I had to set the adjustment at +4 I am now more than happy.

Hans

Last edited by hnikesch; 02-12-2012 at 07:43 AM.
02-12-2012, 09:47 AM   #63
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QuoteOriginally posted by karlito Quote
okay so do you think that selling the smc 50 f1.7 and the pentax 70-200 and getting the da35 seem like a better idea??

this is the pentax zoom lens
Pentax-F 70-200mm F4-5.6 Reviews - Non-SMC Pentax Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database

and pentax 50mm manual lens

SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7 Reviews - M Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database
I wouldn't sell a lens until I understood it perfectly inside and out - sometimes there are certain quality in lenses that you won't find until you get very familiar with it.

Walk around, take more pictures - with your zooms (18-55 and 70-200) try zooming in, focusing, and zooming out a little bit. See if that helps with the focusing, because some zooms keep the focus point the same when zooming in and out. Try shooting in Av mode, and try walking around during the daytime. See what settings your camera chooses. The k-r should be able to go to ISO 3200 and maintain good pictures. Learn the relationships between the shutter speed, aperture size (F#), and ISO.

Shooting indoors in dim lighting while you are still learning is going to make life hard, as the number of keepers is going to be small. Learn in good lighting first!

Go to parks and places where you can find variance in colors, scenes, etc so you see how they show up in the camera. Learn to use large aperture (low F number) to generate the pictures where things are out of focus in the background. The M50 F1.7 will be great for this. Your kit lens at 55mm and your 70-200 will do this at their largest apertures as well, when focusing on something close.

Make sure to use the hood on your lens when in bright daylight. It helps to maintain contrast in your pictures. If you don't have a hood for your lenses, look at the front to find the filter size (usually a standalone number like 49mm or 58mm) and buy a cheap rubber hood on amazon with that filter size.
02-12-2012, 12:30 PM - 1 Like   #64
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Karlito you are doing very well with all of these folks saying it is "user error". I would get pretty discouraged by that. You're also getting good advice from everyone about the technical side. Let me see if I can explain things in a little more abstract way.

You're following the same path as MANY people. They walk into an art gallery (flickr), see the Mona Lisa (my Flickr stream), and think "That doesnt look so hard. I think I can do that". They go buy some paint brushes (a camera), some paint (lenses), and canvas (SD card/editing software). Then when their paintings (photos) don't look like the Mona Lisa they blame the brush, paints. etc.

You have the tools. Of course some brushes and paints are better than others but you DO have very capable tools. The only thing you're missing is the experience. I will bet you that with some effort, some reading and expanding of your knowledge of exposure, and about 10,000 shutter clicks, you will be quite happy with your results.

Good luck and most importantly, have fun on this journey.

02-12-2012, 01:02 PM   #65
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The two shots of oranges on the last page look like a they were shot at a very wide aperture, and just didn't nail the point in space that you wanted in focus. I'm assuming these were with a manual lens, or manual focus anyway. It is very very hard to nail a narrow depth of field shot in manual focus with the stock focusing screen! It takes a lot of practice, and a better focusing screen does make it easier. I suspect that both of those shots would have been acceptably in focus if you shot with the aperture stopped down a few notches. You could certainly afford the light (1/1600th second at ISO 100 indicates it was a bright day, yes?) Try the shot again, stopping down to f./4 or f./5.6, and see how it affects your shutter speed. Experiment with smaller apertures, too, like f./8 thought f./11 and watch how it affects your depth of field.

One thing I don't see mentioned in the last couple pages is that when using the autofocus, the center "point" is actually quite large, more of a zone. It covers a larger area than the red square that lights up in your viewfinder. This can be a help or a hindrance, as it makes it easier for the camera to lock onto something, but that something isn't necessarily what you want. It just takes practice, but as I said above, a better focusing screen with a split prism will help you visually identify what the AF is locking onto, as well as helping you manually focus.

Also, regarding multiple AF points, they're of limited utility IMO. It's pretty easy for the camera to lock onto things in ways you don't intend when using auto 5 or auto 11. Many of us use center point only, focus, and then shift the camera slightly to frame the subject as we want. This is referred to as the "focus and recompose method". When doing this with very large apertures (shallow depth of field) one still needs to be careful that tilting the camera to recompose doesn't shift the band that's in focus off of the subject.

Kudos for coming back and posting more samples. They're definitely better than the first set, and I think it's great that you're actually applying the help people are offering here.
02-12-2012, 01:15 PM   #66
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As for lenses, the DA 55-300 is a great option for its cost..
I would also look into adjusting your focus (think it's through the root/menu) when booting on the K-r. Also, shooting jpeg will have slight loss of IQ when being converted (especially in camera) from RAW to jpeg.
02-12-2012, 09:15 PM   #67
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I think these (Twix's photos) were taken with a K-5, not a K-R, probably with prime lenses.

Nice photos, but not taken with a K-R. I have a k-r and am very impressed. I will post one of my son taken in very poor lighting that came out well. That photo taught me that if I pay attention to what the camera is telling me, I can get very nice photos.

mbo1

Last edited by Mbo1; 02-12-2012 at 09:37 PM.
02-13-2012, 02:27 AM   #68
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Regarding the non-focused orange/twig pictures. How close from the plant were you? Notice that, unlike point and shoots, lenses have a minimum focus distance, for the 18-55mm kit lens it's 25 cm (0.82 feet). If you get closer to the object than that you usually get unfocused pictures like that.

Another thing, pictures taken on a dull, cloudy, winter day usually don't look to great. Try using the shadow white balance setting. Also, in lower light like that, depending on the ISO you set (maybe you forget it on a lower iso value), the camera will use slower shutter speed = if your hands are not still enough, pics will be blurry like that.

Final thought: don't buy any lens yet, first understand your camera and settings, get to the point where you get ok/good (technically) photos with the kit lens, then you'll eventually move up. But it's not, as fellows here stated, the camera. The k-r is very good. You will later see that, more important than the camera is the lens you use and the settings. Then comes the most challenging part: composition

Some quick tips:
The 18-55 kit is very good but it has limitations (all zooms have). For example, at 18 mm the images it produces aren't too crisp, also it doesn't have as good contrast as it does at ~middle of the focal range. Also, if you want crisper images try using the "all around best for anything aperture", meaning f8. For the kit lens, lower apertures (f3.5 - even f5.6) don't produce as crisp photos. Don't get all this wrong, we all have good photos with the kit lens even at low apertures, i'm saying this more to encourage you to visualize and understand your lens. That is why people will tell you, if you want crisp images get a fixed focal lens (prime), as this kind of lens is optimized for a fixed focal lenght and will give you crisper images than a zoom that must be good for a wider focal range.

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