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08-01-2016, 05:23 AM   #1
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New to dSLR photography, some K-50 questions

Hi everyone,

I'm a total newbie to dSLR photography, so after having done a bit of shooting the last couple of weeks, I have some (actually quite a few) questions about the Pentax K-50. All help is greatly appreciated.

I'm having some difficulties getting good handheld pictures in lower light settings, f.e. indoors and cloudy days. Regarding that, there are a few things I'm uncertain about:

- What's the maximum ISO level you would recommend using? Am I correct in assuming higher ISO-levels are less disruptive for portrait photography than for landscape photography?
- What's the maximum shutter time you tend to use? 1/focal length? Is the shake reduction helpful? I feel it doesn't do much for me. Is there a good way to see what it does?
- Could you give me a numerical example of a good setting for a landscape shot on a cloudy day on 24mm? (i.e. F-value, shutter time and ISO) All this talk about aperture block has gotten me nervous whether the exposure is working correctly.

And a few general K-50 questions:

- Seeing all these razor sharp pictures posted, I was wondering how much sharpening is done by everyone. The Samsung Gallery app on my Samsung Tab S2 really sharpens K-50 unedited jpegs. On Google photos these same jpegs don't look anywhere near as good, but perhaps this is just because it doesn't take advantage of the OLED screen's capabilities. I've been doing a little Lightroom on the corresponding RAW's which does make them better, but I'm wondering how much editing in general everyone feels is required.

Thanks in advance, Steven.

Also, because pictures say more than words, here's something you don't see everyday. It's a sad picture, but it was quite amazing to see such a magnificent creature up close:

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08-01-2016, 01:20 PM   #2
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Hello there!
I'll say welcome as everyone else is asleep or busy!.
Quite a few questions and a good image for a start. Starting out, I would forget about sharpening images and think about the shutter speed and focal length relationship, so for that image 24 mm x 1.5 is 1/36th of a second or faster which you comfortably exceeded. SR certainly works and you can go slower maybe at some risk. I think up to ISO 1600 should produce clean images, but the lower the better really.
For landscape, higher f stops for depth of field, say f13 depending on the lens and slower shutter speeds with ISO 100 should produce results but there is no fixed ideal, it depends on the subject and light etc.
I can't say what is good for portraits!.
There are lots of examples in the galleries to glean setting from.
Hope that helps a little.
08-01-2016, 10:16 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevenvg Quote
New to dSLR photography, some K-50 questions

Hi Steven. Welcome to the Pentax forums. Other members with much more knowledge than I will surely answer your questions soon. Being a world wide site, they might not be awake yet !!! Good to have you here.
08-01-2016, 11:25 PM   #4
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YouTube can be a big help for specific genres of photography as well as processing afterwards.A thorough search on these forums will help too.

08-02-2016, 02:22 AM   #5
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Thanks for the input! What made me little bit unsure about the exposure was the following: I have used TAv mode to get to know the camera for landscape shooting. I've used F14 almost exclusively, then adjusted the shutter speed to try to get an ISO low enough to preserve color accuracy. The first two shots were taken minutes apart. Up until then I felt I had a pretty good idea about the required shutter speeds for low ISO. Suddenly the exposure seemed to drop pretty sharply, but perhaps it's only due to the absence of the sky. I still felt there should have been enough bright elements to support a lower ISO, especially since I had done almost completely overcast shots with better exposure (third picture). Of course I've used M mode to see if lower ISO's would really underexpose now and they did, also checked with different lenses. Today for instance is really overcast and I require ISO 800 to get a good exposure at 1/100, F14.

So what do you think, am I having exposure problems or have I just gone on a paranoid rant?
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Last edited by stevenvg; 08-02-2016 at 02:54 AM.
08-02-2016, 02:45 AM   #6
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All the images above are good exosed, to my humble opinion.
You can turn the histogram on, so you can check exposure after each shot.
You can also play with centre or spot metering.
08-02-2016, 05:59 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevenvg Quote
I've used F14 almost exclusively
Welcome to the forum, you'll tend to find the "sweet spot" for most lenses is usually in the F5.6 to F8.0 range.

So if you try that, you'll pick some extra useful shutter speeds.
08-02-2016, 07:49 AM   #8
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So needing ISO 800 on a cloudy day is normal if you want to keep shutter speed fast enough?

08-02-2016, 08:41 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevenvg Quote
So needing ISO 800 on a cloudy day is normal if you want to keep shutter speed fast enough?
By changing the aperture to F8.0, you could adjust the ISO and still maintain the same shutter speed.

Your example of ISO 800 at 1/100, F14 is the same as ISO 250, at 1/100, F8.0 or ISO 125 at 1/100, F5.6

Last edited by Kerrowdown; 08-02-2016 at 08:51 AM.
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