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02-07-2009, 02:29 PM   #1
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Focusing Screen : comparison between Katzeyes an FocusingScreen.com

Hi,

After looking at this thead, I ordered a split focusing screen with optibright and grid lines from KatzEyes for my K20D.

Last year, I ordered and installed a microprism focusing screen from FocusingScreen.com (my review here)

I was quite frustrated by the performance in very low light of my microprism screen, so I decided to order a split screen for my K20D. And in the process I tried Katzeyes.

So my conclusion :

Packaging :
Winner : focusingscreen.com
They are providing a lot more accessories to install the screen. Like "condoms" for fingers and tweezers to open the emplacement of the screen. The only weird thing was that it was delivered in a Nikon box...

Performance :
Difficult to compare split screen and microprism and give a winner as a brand. I think split screen is much better, especially when the light is low. Outside of the focusing zone, I would say that Katzeye is a winner, it's sensitive but still close.
Don't expect miracles in that area compared to stock screen.

Grid :
Both screens are with rule of third grid. The screen form FS has lines made by a different level of transparency (as if the glass was cut) The lines on the Katzeye are dark and black. I much prefer it as it's much easier to see them, but someone else may prefer the way round.
Winner Katzeyes

Price :
Winner : focusingscreen.com.
Katzeyes had cost me about 200€ with the VAT and import taxes, focusingscreen would charge me 90€ including taxes (and I didn't pay the taxes that time) for the equivalent.

My conclusion :
This is not a full side by side comparison of both options, but for my next camera, I would go to focusingscreens.com for the price difference. Katzeyes may be slightly better technically, but I would rather put my money in other accessories/lens/prints.

The comparaison was made using K10D with FA50 1,4 and K20D with K50 1,7 both at F2,0

Best regards,
Guillaume


Last edited by ghelary; 02-10-2009 at 07:24 AM.
02-07-2009, 02:55 PM   #2
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hello ghelary,
thank you for posting this.
I am just considering buying a screen from focusing screen
and i'm uncertain if to get a splitmicroprism screen (k3) or prismscreen (EC-A or F6-J).
Since you have both types (even if one is the "super" katz eye), wich one would you say is better for moving objects like people, often in low light ,too?
I have a pentax mx with split micro prism and in these situations i'm often searching for straight lines to put right (!), and that's not always easy nor fast enough for me.
Would a EC-A or F6-J screen be better?
thank you
02-07-2009, 02:58 PM   #3
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forgot to say that i need the screen for a k10d
02-07-2009, 08:33 PM   #4
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Guillaume, thank you very much--this thread is a big help to me.

02-08-2009, 10:05 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by ghelary Quote
Performance :
Difficult to compare split screen and microprism and give a winner as a brand. I think split screen is much better, especially when the light is low. Outside of the focusing zone, I would say that Katzeye is a winner, it's sensible but still close.
Don't expect miracles in that area compared to stock screen.
Best regards,
Guillaume
Guillaume, I get caught by this often myself. Sensible and Sensitive are reversed between English and Francais.
French "sensible" = English "sensitive"
French "sensitif" = English "sensible".
Obviously the Normans did not teach us correctly <G>

BTW - I am Canadian English, my wife is Canadian French. Our household generally speaks Franglais and Frenglish interchangeably.
02-08-2009, 12:50 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by ghelary Quote
The only weird thing was that it was delivered in a Nikon box.
because they probably cut it from Nikon... why waste the box then.
02-10-2009, 07:25 AM   #7
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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Canada_Rockies Quote
Guillaume, I get caught by this often myself. Sensible and Sensitive are reversed between English and Francais.
French "sensible" = English "sensitive"
French "sensitif" = English "sensible".
Obviously the Normans did not teach us correctly <G>

BTW - I am Canadian English, my wife is Canadian French. Our household generally speaks Franglais and Frenglish interchangeably.
And I knew it :-)

French and English have a lot of words with exactly same spelling and different meanings. I just corrected it.

Regards,
Guillaume
05-18-2009, 10:49 PM   #8
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Hey, just wanted to bump this thread and say thank you Guillaume for the information... I received model FSB from focusingscreen.com today (ordered six days ago - not bad). Installed it in my K20D and now I'm wondering how I went this long without it - it's wonderful to have a real focusing screen in the camera.

Using the screen with an F/4 lens combined with a 1.7x TC for an effective F/6.8, I do get some "blackout" of the center, but I can still work with it effectively.

05-22-2009, 09:11 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by heliphoto Quote
Hey, just wanted to bump this thread and say thank you Guillaume for the information... I received model FSB from focusingscreen.com today (ordered six days ago - not bad). Installed it in my K20D and now I'm wondering how I went this long without it - it's wonderful to have a real focusing screen in the camera.

Using the screen with an F/4 lens combined with a 1.7x TC for an effective F/6.8, I do get some "blackout" of the center, but I can still work with it effectively.
$1500 for a focusing screen . . .

Edit: I just figured out that those are Taiwan dollars.

Last edited by Blue; 05-22-2009 at 09:25 AM.
05-22-2009, 09:56 AM   #10
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I also received my FocusingScreen from that company, and after an initial scare ( use error ) i must say the thing is fantastic. Exceptional quality, and like others, a little darkening is noted at smaller aps, but that is well documented on the forums regarding split image screens, so i knew what to expect. I little jiggery pokery with the angle of view of your eye will help

Really pleased.

I've also posted about this elsewhere in the Camera Accessories thread. There seems to be a lot of threads to choose from on this issue
05-22-2009, 11:22 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
$1500 for a focusing screen . . .

Edit: I just figured out that those are Taiwan dollars.
Hah! Yeah, it's the K-7 of focusing screens though - makes espresso too .

I was using google to convert Taiwanese dollars into USD for a while till I found the dropdown menu on the left which has currency options right there on the page .
05-23-2009, 09:32 AM   #12
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QuoteQuote:
heliophoto: Using the screen with an F/4 lens combined with a 1.7x TC for an effective F/6.8, I do get some "blackout" of the center, but I can still work with it effectively
Josh, if you are only getting "some blackout" @ f 6.8, you must consider yourself very fortunate. After f 5.6, the use of my split is mostly gone. Don't get me wrong, I love and would not be without my split, but you are getting better performance @ smaller apertures.
05-23-2009, 09:41 AM   #13
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I only get partial blackout with f8, so i'm real happy with my choice
05-23-2009, 09:45 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jewelltrail Quote
Josh, if you are only getting "some blackout" @ f 6.8, you must consider yourself very fortunate. After f 5.6, the use of my split is mostly gone. Don't get me wrong, I love and would not be without my split, but you are getting better performance @ smaller apertures.
I'm afraid I was just being optomistic . one side of the prism or the other is basically black at that aperture , but I can still focus with the ground glass and I'm only f/6.8 w/ the 1.7x aftc, so I've got af in my favor then too. I'd like to see the katzeye sometime at the same aperture to compare.
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