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03-17-2019, 08:28 AM - 3 Likes   #1
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Things Learned in My First Year

I've been taking pictures for a little over a year now. I acquired my K-3 in January of last year, with a 50-200 f/4-5.6 lens. Naturally, I succumbed to LBA, and acquired (and dis-acquired and acquired) various lenses and other gear. After a year, and reflecting a bit, here is my sage (13 month!) top-ten advice for beginners:

1. That lens on eBay (Goodwill, Craiglist, Facebook) which is advertised as "K Mount" may be K-mount, if the mount looks like K-mount. However, if it's advertised as K-Mount, and there is no close-up of the mount, then it isn't K-mount. Don't buy it. Make an exception if the brand is "Pentax" and the photos indicate Pentax (but there is still a risk that it isn't K-Mount).

2. The sites advertised on Pentax Forums (Adorama and B&H) are great sources of lenses. Used Photo Pro (Robert's Camera in Indianapolis, IN) is a great site, as is KEH, for used lenses.

3. The price of the lens sold on eBay will tend to reflect the going market rate. Absent a superb catch or happenstance (something mislabeled or purchasing it someplace in person), you will never be able to sell the "great deal" for what you paid for it.

4. A corollary to the last: it's also never in better condition when you try to sell it.

5. You have to make your own call as to what you purchase / sell. With that said, if multitudes of sage camera users on PF (the kind that were really excited when the K1000 was originally introduced) are entirely in disagreement with your own opinion, it would be wise to reconsider. If your opinion still differs after you reconsider, you're probably still wrong.

6. If you have a great lens that seems underrated on PF, then post a review. if you have a terrible lens that is highly rated on PF, either (1) you got a bad / damaged copy, or (2) your skills are lacking.

7. Upgrading your camera body is unlikely to fix the problem.

8. Don't begin by comparing your results to others' photography in a negative fashion. It's good to aspire and imitate great work, however - it's a good way to learn.

9. M42 lenses are fun. The adapters are expensive, however, and most third-party adapters suck.

10. Learn manual focus. It's a great way to hone skills and learn your equipment.

And above all, if you're not sure, ask on PF. Someone will respond within 30 mins or so, and if you're lucky, your question will be good enough to start a 3-4 page comment discussion. If you're unlucky, however, you still won't have a definitive response after that time.

--Jonathan

03-18-2019, 04:25 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by jawats Quote
1. That lens on eBay (Goodwill, Craiglist, Facebook) which is advertised as "K Mount" may be K-mount, if the mount looks like K-mount. However, if it's advertised as K-Mount, and there is no close-up of the mount, then it isn't K-mount. Don't buy it. Make an exception if the brand is "Pentax" and the photos indicate Pentax (but there is still a risk that it isn't K-Mount).
It can be tricky. IF it says "K-Mount" on it, it could be for Pentax 35mm, or for Pentax 645 medium-format cameras. If it's 645, it's going to be physically quite a bit larger, and thus not compatible.
Also.. if it says "Pentax" on it, it might be K-Mount, and it might be Bayonet-mount. Good reason to go to a local shop with used lenses, you can put them on a camera to see if they fit, and see if you get a decent test shot or two before taking them home.

Your points 7, 8, and 10 are probably the most important in your list. Perhaps you could add a number 11: Have fun, whether you're a pro or a hobbyist. Creating art should be fun.
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