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09-12-2013, 02:00 AM   #1
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Sending my K-01 out for 720 IR conversion today...

Pulled the trigger and paid to have my brick IR-modded... also have a K-30 and Ricoh GR which I use more for typical photography, so finally decided to have the K-01 be a dedicated infrared camera. There is a gentleman named Isaac Szabo doing these conversions out of Arkansas who comes highly recommended, and the price was certainly right (search eBay!) You also send him a lens that you would be using (in my case a F 50/1.7) and the AF is recalibrated.

I've been going back and forth on whether to get the 720, 830 (b&w) or full-spectrum conversion, but I tend to like the look of R72/720 images best anyway (in b&w and false color) and like the idea of not messing with additional filters on the lens (full-spectrum). Anyway, will give a full report when it's sent back, typically a 1 week turnaround

09-12-2013, 06:06 AM   #2
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How much is the average for this? I would not mind having my ist ds converted.
09-12-2013, 02:54 PM   #3
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I want to hear back from this
09-12-2013, 09:06 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by derelict Quote
How much is the average for this? I would not mind having my ist ds converted.
Right now he's charging $200 or MAKE OFFER (which is advisable...)

09-12-2013, 09:07 PM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by DonovanDwyer Quote
Right now he's charging $200 or MAKE OFFER (which is advisable...)
Infrared IR Conversion Service for Digital Cameras | eBay
09-25-2013, 05:01 PM - 2 Likes   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by DonovanDwyer Quote
Pulled the trigger and paid to have my brick IR-modded... also have a K-30 and Ricoh GR which I use more for typical photography, so finally decided to have the K-01 be a dedicated infrared camera. There is a gentleman named Isaac Szabo doing these conversions out of Arkansas who comes highly recommended, and the price was certainly right (search eBay!) You also send him a lens that you would be using (in my case a F 50/1.7) and the AF is recalibrated.

I've been going back and forth on whether to get the 720, 830 (b&w) or full-spectrum conversion, but I tend to like the look of R72/720 images best anyway (in b&w and false color) and like the idea of not messing with additional filters on the lens (full-spectrum). Anyway, will give a full report when it's sent back, typically a 1 week turnaround
UPDATE: Got the modded K-01 a few days ago and it's pretty impressive. We've had miserable rainy weather so haven't been able to do anything but a few test shots, but seems sharp with the F-series 50/1.7 that I sent in to calibrate the AF with. What's really cool is being able to see 720 IR images in liveview, otherworldly! I have a vintage K 28/3.5 coming tomorrow that I intend to use as my primary lens for outdoor IR... will post up some landscapes soon.
10-08-2013, 12:39 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by DonovanDwyer Quote
UPDATE: Got the modded K-01 a few days ago and it's pretty impressive. We've had miserable rainy weather so haven't been able to do anything but a few test shots, but seems sharp with the F-series 50/1.7 that I sent in to calibrate the AF with. What's really cool is being able to see 720 IR images in liveview, otherworldly! I have a vintage K 28/3.5 coming tomorrow that I intend to use as my primary lens for outdoor IR... will post up some landscapes soon.
Very interested to see images.
10-08-2013, 01:57 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
Very interested to see images.
You guys, along with Adam, are ripping my credit cards. After reading this thread I immediately paid his asked for fee and await some advice on which body to send. The K-01 was not something I considered having planned long ago to "someday" convert the k20d but if he says one is noticeably better at IR than the other then that will be the body regardless of his additional difficulty or a reasonable extra fee.

I have got to stop reading interesting looking threads.......

.........thanks guys!

10-08-2013, 02:24 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by imtheguy Quote
You guys, along with Adam, are ripping my credit cards. After reading this thread I immediately paid his asked for fee and await some advice on which body to send. The K-01 was not something I considered having planned long ago to "someday" convert the k20d but if he says one is noticeably better at IR than the other then that will be the body regardless of his additional difficulty or a reasonable extra fee.

I have got to stop reading interesting looking threads.......

.........thanks guys!
You should convert the K-01. Simply because it's not wise to spend money on an old peace off electronics as the K20D is.
10-08-2013, 02:30 PM   #10
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ok.....but since I still use my k-01 for a number of things that even the k-5iis does not do the k20d is more available and expendable. My Q7 cannot replace the k-01 but the old k-5 easily replaces the k20d. See my logic? or is more like anti-logic?
10-08-2013, 04:01 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
You should convert the K-01. Simply because it's not wise to spend money on an old peace off electronics as the K20D is.
I guess Isaac Szabo, the IR conversion guy, agrees totally with you only for different reasons. Now I understand...no lens calibration needed if I use the 01 instead of the k20d. [sorry for funky color...had trouble with cut/paste format on white versus black forum format]

Per Isaac:
1. The CDAF autofocus system of the K-01 is much better for infrared than the PDAF system of theK20D. Lenses are designed and calibrated to focus visible light, not infrared light. Different lenses often have different focal points when used for infrared - especially ultrawide and telephoto lenses. Traditional DSLRs like the K20D can be calibrated to focus fairly accurately with most normal lenses, but is impossible to calibrate them to focus accurately with all lenses. However, the CDAF system of the K-01 gets focus data directly from the sensor, so it has100% accurate AF for all lenses. The K-01 is also extremely well-suited to focusing manually with the precision of liveview and focus peaking.

2. With the full-time liveview of the K-01 you are always getting an accurate preview of what things look like in infrared. This helps out with composition and also with spotting good infrared scenes that are not immediately apparent in visible light. With the K20D you would be composing in visible light through the optical viewfinder and then looking at the LCD after the shot to see how things look in infrared.

3. The K-01 is a more recent model with a little better sensor, LCD screen, etc.

4. The K-01 conversion costs less. I would have to charge an extra $50 for theK20D due the increased difficulty and amount of work (I really should be charging even more as it is at least 2x-3x the amount of work).

The main advantage of the K20D is the traditional DSLR body style with an optical viewfinder (if you prefer that).
10-08-2013, 06:05 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by imtheguy Quote
I guess Isaac Szabo, the IR conversion guy, agrees totally with you only for different reasons. Now I understand...no lens calibration needed if I use the 01 instead of the k20d. [sorry for funky color...had trouble with cut/paste format on white versus black forum format]

Per Isaac:
1. The CDAF autofocus system of the K-01 is much better for infrared than the PDAF system of theK20D. Lenses are designed and calibrated to focus visible light, not infrared light. Different lenses often have different focal points when used for infrared - especially ultrawide and telephoto lenses. Traditional DSLRs like the K20D can be calibrated to focus fairly accurately with most normal lenses, but is impossible to calibrate them to focus accurately with all lenses. However, the CDAF system of the K-01 gets focus data directly from the sensor, so it has100% accurate AF for all lenses. The K-01 is also extremely well-suited to focusing manually with the precision of liveview and focus peaking.

2. With the full-time liveview of the K-01 you are always getting an accurate preview of what things look like in infrared. This helps out with composition and also with spotting good infrared scenes that are not immediately apparent in visible light. With the K20D you would be composing in visible light through the optical viewfinder and then looking at the LCD after the shot to see how things look in infrared.

3. The K-01 is a more recent model with a little better sensor, LCD screen, etc.

4. The K-01 conversion costs less. I would have to charge an extra $50 for theK20D due the increased difficulty and amount of work (I really should be charging even more as it is at least 2x-3x the amount of work).

The main advantage of the K20D is the traditional DSLR body style with an optical viewfinder (if you prefer that).
....and a correction from Isaac when I mentioned no lens needed for calibration with CDAF body:

Actually, physical focuscalibration is still necessary with CDAF cameras like the K-01. The correctcombination of IR filter thickness and sensor to lens mount distance isrequired to bring the camera into proper focus range. If this is not donecorrectly, you can have a camera that will not focus to infinity, will notfocus at close distances, or will not focus at any distance. However, onceproperly calibrated, CDAF cameras will focus accurately with all lenses,something that is not possible with PDAF DSLRs.

10-11-2013, 05:46 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by imtheguy Quote
....and a correction from Isaac when I mentioned no lens needed for calibration with CDAF body:

Actually, physical focuscalibration is still necessary with CDAF cameras like the K-01. The correctcombination of IR filter thickness and sensor to lens mount distance isrequired to bring the camera into proper focus range. If this is not donecorrectly, you can have a camera that will not focus to infinity, will notfocus at close distances, or will not focus at any distance. However, onceproperly calibrated, CDAF cameras will focus accurately with all lenses,something that is not possible with PDAF DSLRs.
Isaac did a good job on my cameras. Unfortunately, I got extremely busy after I got back the cameras and didn't get time for actually taking a lot pictures with it. I am a newbie with IR, all photography for that matter, and need to learn processing skills. Mine was the first K01 he converted. Everything worked like before the conversion, dust reduction, shake reduction , auto focus etc..There was a little delay but he told me that before I ordered. I got mine full spectrum converted, with high transmission edmunds glass.
10-11-2013, 08:10 PM   #14
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I don't typically do marketing for these guys but I told Isaac that I was quoting him in the forum and he volunteers to provide additional info if anyone asks. He also said he would love to have more Pentax bodies to work on between his underwater shooting projects. I will certainly post my opinion of the conversion after I get it back in a week.
10-25-2013, 04:06 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by imtheguy Quote
I don't typically do marketing for these guys but I told Isaac that I was quoting him in the forum and he volunteers to provide additional info if anyone asks. He also said he would love to have more Pentax bodies to work on between his underwater shooting projects. I will certainly post my opinion of the conversion after I get it back in a week.
Love getting USPS delivery of toys for the weekend! Isaac got my K-01 back to me along with a message including PDF and a photoshop Action to swap the blu-red channels and touch up for those that need a deep blue sky. So here is my assessment: His work seems first-rate although I did not pull the body apart to inspect. With the inclusion of the PDF directions and the CS5 action I was up and running in 5 minutes with no previous experience. Its great so far (one day). He gets my recommendation anyway. I do recommend you confirm with him how much insurance you want on the return package especially if you include a lens for testing. His turn-around is fast and he seems very helpful. If you have an old body, especially something like the K-01 where live view means no focusing issues, get it done and have fun.


My first test shot, not a work of art but better than magic when a dull green Willow tree looks frozen.
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