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12-01-2007, 01:18 PM   #31
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An interesting proposition, but sadly I use a K100d which is not approved for ground breaking... I'm pretty sure the 6x7 will do the job though

12-01-2007, 03:37 PM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by ncallender Quote
switters -

I hear where you are coming from, wanting to shoot in low light with fast moving objects. While I think that there's a lot of merrit to what you are wanting, there are other practical ways to get around your problems. I went through this same issue this year, and I looked at all the other systems, and to be honest, while canon had better (faster) AF in low light, the performance increase still wasn't worth it compared to other methods of dealing with this problem. So, here's how I analyzed it:

1. I want to shoot in dim light. The only problem is that usually when the light gets down to 3200 at F1.4, the light is aweful to begin with. No amount of AF and sensitivity is going to make for a good picture with that kind of light (most of the time). So, I added off camera flashes to light the area instead. I now get better, smoother images with better resolution, and I'm in control of the light. It only takes a few minutes to set up the off camera flashes (I use Sunpak 383 $80 flashes and ebay wireless remote triggers), and I never have to move them once set up. They just light up the room like house lamps.
I see your point here, and I agree somewhat. I've been following Strobist for a while and learning a lot about off-camera light. I also have a Demb Flip-It DFD Pro, which is a bounce-card and diffuser for on-camera flash. It works quite well, although the light ends up being pretty soft and boring (I prefer hard light in general). So, yes, I've explored this avenue and it's actually why I still have a K10D in the first place. Otherwise I would have sold it and gone for a Canon or Nikon a while ago.

However, there are just those times when I'm too lazy to set up the strobes or it's not practical, and of course ISO 6400 as an emergency measure would come in quite handy then. There are also environments where using flash isn't allowed. Finally, I've noticed that my K10D with AF540 & Demb Flip-it kind of freaks people out and makes them a lot more self-conscious than when I've just got the camera alone.

QuoteQuote:
2. For AF in low light, pentax is just down right stupid because they don't put a real AF assist lamp on their bodies. Seriously, it would cost them $.50 per body and would fix 99% of the complaints about low light AF problems. The flash AF assist is complete junk, and by the time the camera focuses using it, you've blinded the people in the picture. Just put a red, blue, IR or even white AF assist lamp that actually works on the camera! Anyway, enough of the rant - you can attach a flash to the camera with AF assist - yes, it's heavy, but the 360 is a little lighter. I don't know if the little flash they released this year has AF assist that's any good. That would be perfect though. Now you won't be able to use the ebay triggers like this unless you use an optical trigger to trigger the wireless triggers - but you get the point. The other option (this is the only I ultimately went with) is to put the split screen focus screen in the camera. I can focus in pretty poor light quite well with it, and it takes care of all the AF problems.
So here you're saying you put a split screen in the camera so you can focus manually? How does that work with moving subjects like children in low light? I'm very inexperienced with manual focus and not confident I could use it effectively when the subjects are in motion.

Something that became clear from Strobist, and that you've alluded to here, is that flash isn't just about adding light that isn't there, it's about creatively CHANGING the light that is there to make a more pleasing photograph. I know this is true, I'm convinced that those who really know how to use off-camera flash have a huge advantage over those who don't, but I'm just too lazy most of the time to get it set up - either that or it kind of "kills the moment" when I do.

Anyways, thanks for your thoughts. It's got me leaning back towards hanging on to my Pentax gear, at least until the PMA announcement.
12-01-2007, 03:42 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
You are making some rather bold assumptions. What makes you think that the new toys on offer will not compete or even exceed the specs of the Nikon D300 or Canons 40D, etc...Pentax aren't F'ing around nor are they riding on their laurels. But speculation is fun and often very illuminating to say the least.
Ben,

I sure do want to believe you. I have no reason not to, I suppose. And I guess it wouldn't kill me to wait another three months (I'm assuming it will be that long before the new Pentax models are actually shipping) before I make a final decision.

Perhaps in the meantime I'll pick up a K100D Super, or play around with flash some more.
12-01-2007, 06:33 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by switters Quote
I see your point here, and I agree somewhat. I've been following Strobist for a while and learning a lot about off-camera light. I also have a Demb Flip-It DFD Pro, which is a bounce-card and diffuser for on-camera flash. It works quite well, although the light ends up being pretty soft and boring (I prefer hard light in general). So, yes, I've explored this avenue and it's actually why I still have a K10D in the first place. Otherwise I would have sold it and gone for a Canon or Nikon a while ago.

However, there are just those times when I'm too lazy to set up the strobes or it's not practical, and of course ISO 6400 as an emergency measure would come in quite handy then. There are also environments where using flash isn't allowed. Finally, I've noticed that my K10D with AF540 & Demb Flip-it kind of freaks people out and makes them a lot more self-conscious than when I've just got the camera alone.

So here you're saying you put a split screen in the camera so you can focus manually? How does that work with moving subjects like children in low light? I'm very inexperienced with manual focus and not confident I could use it effectively when the subjects are in motion.

Something that became clear from Strobist, and that you've alluded to here, is that flash isn't just about adding light that isn't there, it's about creatively CHANGING the light that is there to make a more pleasing photograph. I know this is true, I'm convinced that those who really know how to use off-camera flash have a huge advantage over those who don't, but I'm just too lazy most of the time to get it set up - either that or it kind of "kills the moment" when I do.

Anyways, thanks for your thoughts. It's got me leaning back towards hanging on to my Pentax gear, at least until the PMA announcement.
Yeah - once you get everything put on the camera (flash, bounce card, etc) it does get intimidating. :-) That's why off camera flash is easier for me (I don't like the weight of body/lens/flash/diffuser). As for manual focus, my first camera was a manual focus ZX-M, so I learned how to not only use the split image but also the whole ground glass. If you look around the net, there are tutorials on learning how to manual focus on a focusing screen. It does take practice, but once you get it, it's pretty easy to track subjects and get adequate results. It's not for all occasions. It also helps to have fast lenses.

Anyway, like I said, this set up isn't for everyone. Hish iso improvement would be pretty neat to see in a pentax camera though. I'm looking forward to january. :-)

12-01-2007, 06:59 PM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by ncallender Quote
Yeah - once you get everything put on the camera (flash, bounce card, etc) it does get intimidating. :-) That's why off camera flash is easier for me (I don't like the weight of body/lens/flash/diffuser). As for manual focus, my first camera was a manual focus ZX-M, so I learned how to not only use the split image but also the whole ground glass. If you look around the net, there are tutorials on learning how to manual focus on a focusing screen. It does take practice, but once you get it, it's pretty easy to track subjects and get adequate results. It's not for all occasions. It also helps to have fast lenses.

Anyway, like I said, this set up isn't for everyone. Hish iso improvement would be pretty neat to see in a pentax camera though. I'm looking forward to january. :-)
How much does it cost to get a split-screen put into the K10D? My first camera was a Canon A-1 and I remember it had one. I liked focusing with it.
12-01-2007, 07:16 PM   #36
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check out ebay or gadgetinfinity. My cheap one from china for my dl was around $30 shipped. Katz Eye sell them for quite a bit more, but are probably better. Mine is fine, but I think I would have sprung for one from a real company instead of someone in china cutting down old minolta ones to size. :-) Anyway, my next body will most likely have a split image screen as well - it's useful for so many things.
12-01-2007, 10:20 PM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by ncallender Quote
check out ebay or gadgetinfinity. My cheap one from china for my dl was around $30 shipped. Katz Eye sell them for quite a bit more, but are probably better. Mine is fine, but I think I would have sprung for one from a real company instead of someone in china cutting down old minolta ones to size. :-) Anyway, my next body will most likely have a split image screen as well - it's useful for so many things.
Cool. I checked out the Katz Eye screens. I like how you can order different framing guides, like an 8x10 crop or square format crop.

One thing I don't like about the split screen, though, is that spot metering is inaccurate for lenses with a smaller max aperture than f/2. Granted, that's only one of my lenses (DA21; the other two are FA43 & FA77) but that's kind of a drag.

Have you encountered this problem?
12-01-2007, 11:36 PM   #38
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I think there is hope the coming K10D replacement might have better noise control considered D300 has done it, if not improved by much. However, I am not optimistic Pentax would "touch" the existing 11 point AF design when the majority of users seem to be happy with it, or even trying hard to defend (though I myself have run into its limitation many time). As to 1/180s sync, there is always HSS.

12-02-2007, 12:11 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by switters Quote
.........there's a D300 out there that does AF & ISO significantly better for a few hundred bucks more.
probably $700-800 more , not a few $$$ for me..........

K20D + DA*50-135 = D300 body only
...think about that..........
12-02-2007, 01:06 PM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by klika Quote
probably $700-800 more , not a few $$$ for me..........

K20D + DA*50-135 = D300 body only
...think about that..........
It's very likely that the K20D, if it approaches the D300 in features, will cost more like $1200 - $1400. At least that seems to be the consensus on the various Pentax forums. So I don't think you'll be able to pick up a K20D + 50-135 for the same price as a D300, but I do agree that it will very likely be cheaper.
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