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03-09-2012, 06:15 PM   #1
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hi guys, pro-to-be here!

hi guys my name is Benoit, however people usually call me Ben.

I've been a regular here for some time, so i thought id make myself a user

I also have a few questions for Pentax fans
I currently own a sigma 18-50mm and a sigma 70-300mm, along with my first DSLR, a k20d.
When i bought this equipment, it was all about the zoom and the megapixels, but now that i have a little experience I understand iso, shutter speed, and aperture.

I also have gone through a dramatic change in opinion : from "better buy a good body with a lot of megapixels at first, you can always upgrade to good lenses after", to "screw the bodies and megapixels, its the lenses that take the picture!"

i have therefore decided that i will only buy very good lenses

witch brings me to my questions: can you coment on the kit below? do you have any objections/remarks? thanks

first the zooms:

pentax 16-50mm da* f2.8
pentax 50-135mm da* f2.8

needless to say those two are a pair that go hand in hand, but does anybody know anything on their full-frame capabilities?
on bhphotovideo.com, I get a warning whenever i add certain lenses to my cart, the warning essentially says that "this lens is not full-frame capable". however i get no such warning when i add either of those lenses to my cart. if they are full-frame capable that would be a huge plus.

now for the primes:

pentax d fa 100mm f2.8 macro wr

this would be my main lens i believe, since i love macro work on small insects, however it only gets to a 1:1 magnification ratio, and i am thinking
of getting to 2:1 by reversing another lens on the 100mm, specifically the:

pentax fa 50mm f1.4

this lens would double as a fast "normal prime". now i was wondering if it the best way to get "super macro". are there better ways to do this?
this question is specifically adresed to yeatzee, who is by the way a god in macro world so if you see this please tell me what you think

if that macro ratio does not do the job, i could get the:

pentax fa 35mm f2.0

now to get even more close up macros, i thought i could mount any of the two lenses above on the:

pentax da* 200mm f2.8

this would of course double as a telephoto, but i have a few doubts on this one: would mounting a lense with a 49mm tread on a lens with a 77mm tread cause vignetting? also some people on this forum think that this lens is full-frame capable, yet on bhphotovideo.com i get a warning saying it is not. ps does anybody have pictures that show just how big this and the 100mm are?BI=5981&KBID=6867&SID=f& a comparison? thanks

i am also thinking of getting the pentax macro ring flash, feel free to comment on it as well.
so far however the other pentax flashes look like they need updating to me. lets hope that happens soon, now that ricoth own the company

thanks guys

ben


Last edited by pentaxinator; 03-10-2012 at 05:09 AM.
03-09-2012, 09:16 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxinator Quote
this would be my main lens i believe, since i love macro work on small insects, however it only gets to a 1:1 magnification ratio, and i am thinking
of getting to 2:1 by reversing another lens on the 100mm, specifically the: pentax fa 50mm f1.4
I'm skeptical about this. The filter ring and protruding barrel on the DFA 100 WR seem to be made of plastic. I don't think attaching a lens to it would be a good idea. In any case, it's not something I would do.

QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxinator Quote
would mounting a lense with a 49mm tread on a lens with a 77mm tread cause vignetting?
I have mounted 49mm on a 200mm lens with a 58mm thread and didn't run into any vignetting issues. Don't know about a 77mm thread but given the narrow FOV, wouldn't be surprised if there are no problems.
03-09-2012, 10:44 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxinator Quote
now for the primes:

pentax d fa 100mm f2.8 macro wr

this would be my main lens i believe, since i love macro work on small insects, however it only gets to a 1:1 magnification ratio, and i am thinking
of getting to 2:1 by reversing another lens on the 100mm, specifically the:

pentax fa 50mm f1.4

this lens would double as a fast "normal prime". now i was wondering if it the best way to get "super macro". are there better ways to do this?
this question is specifically adresed to yeatzee, who is by the way a god in macro world so if you see this please tell me what you think

if that macro ratio does not do the job, i could get the:

pentax fa 35mm f2.0

now to get even more close up macros, i thought i could mount any of the two lenses above on the:

pentax da* 200mm f2.8

this would of course double as a telephoto, but i have a few doubts on this one: would mounting a lense with a 49mm tread on a lens with a 77mm tread cause vignetting? also some people on this forum think that this lens is full-frame capable, yet on bhphotovideo.com i get a warning saying it is not. ps does anybody have pictures that show just how big this and the 100mm are?BI=5981&KBID=6867&SID=f& a comparison? thanks

i am also thinking of getting the pentax macro ring flash, feel free to comment on it as well.
o far however the other pentax flashes look like they need updating to me. lets hope that happens soon, now that ricoth own the company

thanks guys

ben
I appreciate the compliment Ben Im ashamed to say it, but I havent shot macro's in multiple months Im almost never on here as well anymore

reverse stacking is a pretty decent way to get high magnification images, but the results can vary greatly on specific lenses. For example I reversed a 50mm and a 28mm on my sigma 105mm macro many times, resulting in pretty decent results. However ultimately the IQ was just not up to par, especially when compared to other setups. Read this thread, it should answer most of your questions

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/133851-macro-s...mparisons.html
03-10-2012, 04:38 AM   #4
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Hi Ben. My first advice would be to buy your macro lens and practice using it at 1:1 before moving onto greater magnifications. 1:1 will teach you many aspects of macro photography including possibly the most important ... lighting (I would 100% avoid ring flashes / LEDs for macro unless you like very flat looking shots and the 'ring of lights' look in your subjects eyes) ! Check out this thread Post Your Set Up! - FM Forums for many lighting systems - you will absolutely need one of them and at least one flash unit (manual is fine, the Yongnuo 560 ex is excellent and a great price).

Then of course you need to learn how to stack images because the greater the magnification the faster your DoF diminishes. So you will need a stacking program, there are a few including one which is both excellent & free (I believe it is called CombineZ - PC only), I use the wonderful Zerene stacker on a Mac. Then of course focus rails and tripods come into the equation. There is no quick or uncomplicated solution to high magnification photography ! Probably the easiest way to get beyond 1:1 is to attach a Raynox 150 or 250 to your original macro lens (it actually turns virtually any lens into a high magnification lens) and these cost ca. US$60-70, go for the 250 since you are interested in more magnification.

03-10-2012, 05:17 AM   #5
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thanks for a quick reply guys!

ok so to sum up: the filter thread of the d fa 100mm macro is made of plastic, mounting another lens onto it is not recommended.

also: avoid ring flashes, they cause "flat looking pictures" and rings in the eyes of the subject. could this be avoided by adding the input of a second normal flash, only from a 45 degree angle or so?

thanks

ben
03-10-2012, 05:56 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxinator Quote
thanks for a quick reply guys!

ok so to sum up: the filter thread of the d fa 100mm macro is made of plastic, mounting another lens onto it is not recommended.

also: avoid ring flashes, they cause "flat looking pictures" and rings in the eyes of the subject. could this be avoided by adding the input of a second normal flash, only from a 45 degree angle or so?

thanks

ben
Check out the link I gave above Ben and all will be revealed .... ring flashes are never recommended for serious macro.
03-10-2012, 07:53 AM   #7
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Btw, a lot of third party brands offer 'macro' lenses (Zeiss, Sigma, Tamron), which dont come close to 1:1 magnification, so that is actually pretty great. On a crop sensor camera the magnification will appear even bigger (it technically won't be, but because of the crop it will look like it is).
About the kit and lenses it really depends what kind of work you will be doing, as something like portrait work or weddings will require different lenses from product photography or wildlife photography and different still from landscape photography. Generally those zooms cover the main range, so that is good.
Also, just fyi a lot of pros rent lenses for specific things, like if they need a big tele for a soccer game, they will rent it for that day, instead of buying it. Some pros buy lenses (as their value doesn't go down as quickly as the body's and their quality can remain high for years to come) and rent camera bodies (as their technology can change every couple years). But that depends on your local market - where I live renting isn't always easily accessible and even then its mostly Nikon gear.
03-10-2012, 08:23 AM   #8
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Sorry, I know this is irrelevant, but I like your forum name ben, The "Pentaxinator" Good luck with your search

03-10-2012, 08:23 AM   #9
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With a good lens you can add additional macro capability through either a bellows (with focus rails) or extension tubes. Each of which can be much cheaper than additional lenses....
03-10-2012, 08:30 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
With a good lens you can add additional macro capability through either a bellows (with focus rails) or extension tubes. Each of which can be much cheaper than additional lenses....
Very nice I might get me one of those!
03-10-2012, 09:41 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxinator Quote
I also have gone through a dramatic change in opinion : from "better buy a good body with a lot of megapixels at first, you can always upgrade to good lenses after", to "screw the bodies and megapixels, its the lenses that take the picture!"

i have therefore decided that i will only buy very good lenses
ben
Yes, but it is the photographer that MAKES the picture.

My advice is whatever you end up getting, learn how to use it at its fullest. You'll be pleasantly surprised on what can be done even with "regular" equipment at the hands of a master
03-10-2012, 06:28 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by demp10 Quote
Yes, but it is the photographer that MAKES the picture.

My advice is whatever you end up getting, learn how to use it at its fullest. You'll be pleasantly surprised on what can be done even with "regular" equipment at the hands of a master
you are right on every point, one does not need a "professional camera" to get great results. however when i got my k20d, i was all about how many megapixels there where and i was very frustrated that it did not say: "X20 ZOOM" on the big lens, just a meaningless (to me at the time)"70-300mm".

i am glad those times are behind me now
03-10-2012, 06:30 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by kaiserz Quote
sorry, i know this is irrelevant, but i like your forum name ben, the "pentaxinator" good luck with your search :d
:d :d :d :d :d :d :d
03-10-2012, 06:53 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
Check out the link I gave above Ben and all will be revealed .... ring flashes are never recommended for serious macro.
i checked out the link as you said. very interesting, a lot of DIY. since i am NOT good at DIY, do you know any reliable alternatives?

i have seen most(all?) macro flash brackets commercially available, and i have come to the conclusion that combining a straight plate with two screws, and one or two mini tripod ball heads, will probably be the best option. do you know of any straight plate with two screws that are available at B&H? i currently live in south america, and the DSLR market here is, well horrible. ebay or amazon are useless to me, but i have contacts that could bring me stuff, FROM B&H.

ps, i have seen and i am not pleased with:

the wimberley setup, the kirk systems, and the Manfrotto 330B Macro Flash Bracket.

just so you know i have done my home work


edit

i have decided to use a Giottos MH 1004 Mini Ball Head, combined with a straight bracket.

i deed end up finding a few that meet my requirements on b&h, i will ask B&h staff to help me choose.

thank you very much to all of you for the help

ben

Last edited by pentaxinator; 03-11-2012 at 02:11 AM.
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