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08-19-2013, 05:09 AM   #16
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There are cheaper alternatives




This whole 'Bug Hunting' kit cost only £370 including camera!

K-01 body only from our friends at SRS £236

B.P.M. bellows with focus rail, Pentax K and M42 adapters £35 (a few years ago)

50mm lens around £20, you only need a Pentax M series for this not the more expensive A series. A 100mm lens will put you further away from the subject (roughly 4X further) out of the insects 'radar' zone, the DOF will be exactly the same.

Viltrox manual ring flash £79 from a UK stockist off eBay.

Chris

08-21-2013, 02:51 PM   #17
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OK, I am bummed. Just received my Tamron SP DI 90mm F/2.8 from Adorama and... I'm pretty sure there's the beginnings of fungus inside.

It's light enough to possibly not affect picture quality right now, but if that's what they claim is "excellent" then I'm no longer buying anything with that label. Going to call them presently, I guess...

EDIT: OK, strike that. It's too regular, it must be a reflection of the reflective surface around the halogen bulb of the lamp I was using. Using a more diffused light source, I just see some dust. My mood is improving slightly.

Last edited by Doundounba; 08-21-2013 at 03:02 PM. Reason: addendum
08-21-2013, 03:40 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisJ Quote
This whole 'Bug Hunting' kit cost only £370 including camera!
To the untrained eyes, this looks more like an elephant hunting kit
08-21-2013, 05:18 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisJ Quote
There are cheaper alternatives
Thanks ChrisJ. For sure, cheaper is a possibility, and yours is a fine looking kit! But I wanted to go from my current 50mm to 90mm (at least) in order to increase my working distance a bit, and retain infinity focus (when I'm working up to 1:1). And AF will be nice if/when I try to use the lens for portraits. At $287 shipped and taxed (without a hood), this was a good deal, IMHO.

I might eventually look into a k-mount bellows, but with 50mm of tubes, the Tamron 90mm already goes to 1:76:1! That might even be enough to get some nice jumping spider shots.

Here's what it looks like on the white K-01:





Last edited by Doundounba; 08-21-2013 at 05:20 PM. Reason: clarification
08-24-2013, 03:12 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by prime.partisan Quote
To the untrained eyes, this looks more like an elephant hunting kit
LOL Fortunately there are few untrained eyes on this forum.

Chris
08-24-2013, 04:13 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Doundounba Quote
Thanks ChrisJ. For sure, cheaper is a possibility, and yours is a fine looking kit! But I wanted to go from my current 50mm to 90mm (at least) in order to increase my working distance a bit, and retain infinity focus (when I'm working up to 1:1). And AF will be nice if/when I try to use the lens for portraits. At $287 shipped and taxed (without a hood), this was a good deal, IMHO.

I might eventually look into a k-mount bellows, but with 50mm of tubes, the Tamron 90mm already goes to 1:76:1! That might even be enough to get some nice jumping spider shots.
The Tamron Macro is a good lens, I've never come across a bad example, the focus limiter is handy, The Pentax hunts to the point of being useless when focusing close. 1.76:1 is just under half life-size, Tamron make an adapter specifically for this lens which will give you 1:1 (i.e. life-size, something 1cm in the real world will be 1cm on your sensor) magnification, it does rob you of one f stop, but no loss of image quality. My bellows rig can go up to 7 times life-size, but then things get very hairy.

The manual flash serves to 'freeze' hand held shots, the flash duration is so fast at the low powers required when the flash is so close to the subject. The idea is manual everything, Manual Mode on the camera, manual focus and manual power on the flash. It works like this;-

When taking a flash image you are taking two exposures simultaneously, the flash component and the ambient component, the idea is to reduce the ambient component so it doesn't register on the sensor at all, without the flash you would just get a black frame. To this end I set the ISO to 100, and shutter speed as fast as I can (1/180th of a second). As the camera can only see the small amount of light reflected off a small area there will be little, if anything, recorded on the sensor.

Then I introduce the flash and adjust the power level to get a good exposure, as you know the flash to subject distance sets the exposure, but with this rig the flash to subject distance is set by the narrow DOF so is the same in every shot. This can be set up before you leave the house.

You focus by moving the whole contraption backwards and forwards till you see the focus peaking is where you want it, this is the tricky part and get's hyper tricky at large magnifications, the K-01's screen endeavours to give you a bright image, but is easier if you have a torch (flashlight) to illuminate your subject, press the shutter and you get a perfectly exposed, sharp and crisp image every time.

Example

[
]

This was not taken with a K-01, but the rig was the same.

Chris
08-24-2013, 10:35 AM   #22
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Actually, 1.76:1 is more than life-size, quite a bit more. This Tamron does 1:1 on it's own. (You are likely thinking of the older adaptall lens, that only does 1:2 on its own.) With the tubes and this lens, at MFD, the image on the sensor is 13.5mm wide, on a 23.7mm sensor (ie you photgraph a measuring tape, and measure 13.5mm from the left edge of the frame to the right edge).

Last edited by Doundounba; 08-24-2013 at 10:35 AM. Reason: typo
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