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09-08-2012, 12:16 PM   #1
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Help - any idea why there would be oversaturation using a manual lens?

First post.

I thought I might get a DSLR body to go with my recently refound old Pentax lenses including a F1.4 50mm.

I went to the camera shop and tried out the K-r, K-30 and K-5. From my perspective I preferred the K-r as it was the lightest and felt best in the hand (please don't start flaming me for saying this).

So I asked the salesman to take some test shots at ISO 800 and ISO 1600 to see the low noise performance (at the highest ISO I was going to use).

The pictures from the standard AF 18-55 DAL lens looked fine. However, when he took the photos with my manual f1.4 50mm (which is what I want to use on the body) the photos look over saturated - see attached.

Any ideas why the photo would be oversaturated with a manual lens (and apologies if this is a completely stupid question)?

I quite like the idea of getting the K-r and getting back into what's important - taking photos

Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-r  Photo 
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-r  Photo 
09-08-2012, 12:26 PM   #2
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I don't know if it's saturation or white balance. I'm voting white balance.
09-08-2012, 12:28 PM   #3
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Thanks for such a swift reply Tom. If it's white balance is there any reason this would happen with a manual lens? Is this because when you attach a manual lens to the K-r you should make a change to the settings? I am just puzzled why the white balance/saturation would change so much just by changing from one lens to another?
09-08-2012, 12:29 PM   #4
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It's white balance. Probably on auto

09-08-2012, 12:29 PM   #5
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definitely white balance too warm... didn't getting adjusted for artificial light
09-08-2012, 12:31 PM   #6
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Please ignore my previous post. Looking at the EXIF it looks as though the white balance was on manual as well when using the manual lens.

Different question: can one use a Manual lens on the K-r whilst having white balance on auto?
09-08-2012, 12:31 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by mephistophelean Quote
First post.

I thought I might get a DSLR body to go with my recently refound old Pentax lenses including a F1.4 50mm.

I went to the camera shop and tried out the K-r, K-30 and K-5. From my perspective I preferred the K-r as it was the lightest and felt best in the hand (please don't start flaming me for saying this).

So I asked the salesman to take some test shots at ISO 800 and ISO 1600 to see the low noise performance (at the highest ISO I was going to use).

The pictures from the standard AF 18-55 DAL lens looked fine. However, when he took the photos with my manual f1.4 50mm (which is what I want to use on the body) the photos look over saturated - see attached.

Any ideas why the photo would be oversaturated with a manual lens (and apologies if this is a completely stupid question)?

I quite like the idea of getting the K-r and getting back into what's important - taking photos
Any chance your "manual f1.4 50mm" is a Takumar or SMC K?
09-08-2012, 12:35 PM   #8
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Please bear with me as I don't quite understand all the jargon.

My f1.4 50mm is a SMC Pentax M which I understand is a K mount lens. Does this answer your question?

09-08-2012, 12:39 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by mephistophelean Quote
Please ignore my previous post. Looking at the EXIF it looks as though the white balance was on manual as well when using the manual lens.

Different question: can one use a Manual lens on the K-r whilst having white balance on auto?
yes indeed
09-08-2012, 12:40 PM   #10
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There was a 50/1.4 made by Pentax that used thoriated glass, which yellowed in time and could produce such results as your photo. It is not your case though. It must be improper white balance. Tungsten light bulbs emit yellow light, although you may not notice it, because your brain accommodates automatically for it, but the camera doesn't.

You might also want to be aware of the tungsten AF issue of the K-r (search for other topics discussing this problem).
09-08-2012, 12:41 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mephistophelean Quote
Please ignore my previous post. Looking at the EXIF it looks as though the white balance was on manual as well when using the manual lens.

Different question: can one use a Manual lens on the K-r whilst having white balance on auto?
Yes. WB has nothing to do with the lens type.
09-08-2012, 12:43 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tom S. Quote
Yes. WB has nothing to do with the lens type.
Although I imagine Nikon could come up with some DSLR that offers AWB only with AF lenses
09-08-2012, 12:58 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by mephistophelean Quote
If it's white balance is there any reason this would happen with a manual lens? Is this because when you attach a manual lens to the K-r you should make a change to the settings? I am just puzzled why the white balance/saturation would change so much just by changing from one lens to another?
Read the EXIF of the pics, the second photo is Auto (the camera nailed it) while the first was Manual. I suspect your sales associate whiles setting manual exposure settings may have selected his own white balance which was incorrect.

I shoot with manual lenses on my Kr all the time.... Its a great feature I was unaware of when I purchased mine 20 months ago.
09-08-2012, 01:18 PM   #14
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It is the white balance, and nothing to do with yellowed glass or anything like that. It happens all the time with manual lenses under artificial light -- I think it is because only spot metering is enabled with manual lenses and it just isn't good at setting WB depending on what you are pointed at.
09-08-2012, 01:43 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
I think it is because only spot metering is enabled with manual lenses and it just isn't good at setting WB depending on what you are pointed at.
In this case, I dissagree. The error was not the camera's. As I mentioned above, the EXIF clearly states a manual white balance was selected.
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