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10-22-2012, 08:18 PM   #16
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Yes, the color saturation in the picture above doesn't match what I see on my monitor. That first picture of the tree I submitted looked similar to what I see on my Apple 27" Monitor, but I'm not sure why the Train came out less saturated. Thanks for another warm welcome to the forum. I'm having a great time here and hope to contribute and learn.

10-22-2012, 10:51 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Chaos_Realm Quote
I think that the first thing you need to realise is that digital Vs film you will notice diffraction limitations a bit more. I have noticed you are shooting at F22 on your first shot and F20 on the last one. These values, for any lens, will give you problems. I suggest that you pull that back to the range of F7.1-f11 just so that you are getting the best from your lens, as diffraction will reduce contrast sharpness and overall resolution.
Sorry to highjack your thread but I just had to say THANKS so much for this post! I'm new to photography and have done LOTS of reading but never came across the concept of diffraction. All the tutorials and books seem to suggest simply that "smaller aperture will result in more of your image being in focus" - I've been wondering why my lenses are so soft, and this could be the answer. I can't wait to fire off some shots at f5.6 and see how much sharper they are.

While researching diffraction it's been like a light bulb was went off in my head. I found this link really good: http://dpnow.com/7644.html

BTW I'm on a k200d with an fa50 1.4 and a Tamron 28-75 2.8.
10-22-2012, 11:08 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by djmundy Quote
I can't wait to fire off some shots at f5.6 and see how much sharper they are.
The sharpest aperture isn't the same for all lenses, I have found the 18-55 WR kit lens to peak around F7.1-F8, better lenses such as FA limited and DA* might peak at wider apertures. For example the DA* 55 F1.4 peaks at F2.8 according to DxO labs (click for link) or the DFA 100mm F2.8 WR Macro peaks at about F4 according to the same site LINK. If you have a look on their site you might find some info on your lenses.
10-23-2012, 12:28 AM   #19
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For most mid-range lenses, a good rule of thumb is to keep it at f/8 while walking around. For quick grab shots f/8 will almost always be within the sharp range. For shots where you have more time to think, adjust according to what you are trying to accomplish. Except in limited cases, aperture is NOT used to control exposure but rather for controlling depth of field. For extended DOF, I frequently stay at f/11 or MAYBE f/16. F/22 is for special circumstances like slowing shutter speed (silky moving water, etc) or starbursts. The starburst effect on the train shot above is a perfect example. The spikes emanating from the headlight is a dead giveaway of high aperture like f/22.

10-23-2012, 06:06 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by djmundy Quote
Sorry to highjack your thread but I just had to say THANKS so much for this post! I'm new to photography and have done LOTS of reading but never came across the concept of diffraction. All the tutorials and books seem to suggest simply that "smaller aperture will result in more of your image being in focus" - I've been wondering why my lenses are so soft, and this could be the answer. I can't wait to fire off some shots at f5.6 and see how much sharper they are.

While researching diffraction it's been like a light bulb was went off in my head. I found this link really good: Features - Is your camera diffraction limited? If so, why? - Digital Photography Now

BTW I'm on a k200d with an fa50 1.4 and a Tamron 28-75 2.8.
You're not highjacking the thread, you're adding to it. It's a basic starting point to learn more about the hobby. All comments are welcome and appreciated. Since I can't post the same picture twice, I took the comments about the train then set out the next day to do better. The pictures I took are on this thread: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-your-photos/202824-landscape-strasbu...ml#post2143739 As ^^ abmj above pointed out, the second train picture taken at a less extreme aperture result in the headlight not having that starburst effect and better definition. Thanks for the tips.

Comments are welcome on those pictures also. Currently I'm enrolled in the NYIP Photography Course, but reading and studying theory can't compete with hands on experience and comments like this forum provides.

Last edited by Stevizzy; 10-23-2012 at 06:10 AM. Reason: add comment
10-23-2012, 06:21 AM   #21
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If you retake the train shot, try an aperture of F8. That should let you get plenty of the train in focus, but due to the far background distance the farm should be sufficiently OOF to still give a rural feel, but not cause a busy, distracting background.
10-23-2012, 05:59 PM   #22
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You probably don't have too many options with respect to time-of-day (I've chased a few trains, I know you shoot when you can and not often when you'd prefer to, with respect to the light), but if you get a chance at that engine earlier or later in the day, go for it. The color looks a little flat to me, too, but it also looks like it might have been shot around midday. Noon light is pretty flat, but if that's when the train gets to your vantage point, you haven't much choice.
10-24-2012, 05:21 AM   #23
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You're right about the time of day. The train runs by at 12:30, 1:30 and 2:30 this time of year. The shadows are brutal. Maybe next year during the summer when they run all day will be better. Thanks.

10-24-2012, 05:42 PM   #24
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Righto, go for it! A polarizer might add some punch to the sky, too.
10-27-2012, 05:26 AM   #25
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I agree with f8 as a walk around setting, every lens I have works great at that aperture. That's also usually my starting point. Most of the time I stay at f8, especially with my 200mm Vivitar, where it's not too often I get enough light to go to f11. When I do it works just as well as f8 does for that lens.

You might also want to take a look at my depth of field thread, should give you an idea what to expect from different apertures, at least close up. With long distance shots, like your train, f8 usually has enough depth to do a nice job and get good sharpness, while still having a nice wide range of depth.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/photographic-technique/191978-depth-field-dummies.html

That's just a basic write up of how depth of field works, but with emphasis on how it affects your shots at closer ranges, where it's a lot more important in many cases.
10-29-2012, 08:10 AM   #26
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You're going to get that "superimposed" look when colors in the foreground and background are so different - we may be so used to bad superimposition on TV that this looks suspicious. Maybe if you toned the blue down in PP you'd be happier. I like it, though. Some leaf colors are incredibly vibrant.

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