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12-16-2014, 07:10 AM   #16
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@cats_five - no uv filter, this lens is naked.

12-16-2014, 07:26 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by DeadJohn Quote
That looks excessively soft...Or maybe use manual focus starting from the 1st shot if you know how to zoom in using live view...
I took some photos outdoors mid-day with overcast. I tried live view 4x manual focus as @starjedi suggested so I have a question about that. When I tried LV 4x manual focus, I could not get a sharp focus. Mainly, I took a picture when the shot was more in focus than not, but all the same, at the most ideal it was still blurry when focusing in live view. So is this expected behavior?

Anyway, my lunch was cut short but I managed to take a couple of comparison shots between my 18-55 and 50-200. The test shots were not a exactly precise, but I took shots between f5.6 to f13 for both lenses. All of the shots using the 18-55 were not sharp and every photo from the 50-200 was sharper than anything the 18-55 produced.

Obviously a handful of variables were introduced to compare the two lenses, but I think the general idea is that I am able to get sharp pictures using auto-focus with a different lens.

Just to give you an idea and some fun, here are some pictures of lichen, cropped to highlight the softness:
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12-16-2014, 08:08 PM   #18
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It occurred to me that the 18-55 i currently own is actually my second lens from that line. I had my first replaced because the focus ring became jammed. So I went back to see if i'm crazy and randomly picked out a photo for comparison. Not the sharpest, but...

-it's an indoor photo in low light
-f5.6
-iso 200

and the results are completely different compared to the first set I posted with. No way would I be able to use iso 200 with the current lens, let alone f5.6
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12-18-2014, 07:26 AM   #19
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There is something up with this lens. It should be much be much better than that - something like these (taken with the WR version). Send it back wherever it came from and get another one.

11-24-2015, 03:04 PM   #20
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I'm not happiest with this lens either - all is true - the lens have obviously low contrast and sharpness rate, and I found it quite unusuable for all kind of portreiting, or shoting people, sometimes even landscapes...

I was thinking, something is wrong with settinggs, then I discovered Af fine tuning, but lens is still soft, and poor in focusing - not so poor, but enough to get you on this page, where you can confirm this...

Last edited by panonski; 11-25-2015 at 01:39 AM.
11-25-2015, 05:09 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by panonski Quote
I'm not happiest with this lens either - all is true - the lens have obviously low contrast and sharpness rate, and I found it quite unusuable for all kind of portreiting, or shoting people, sometimes even landscapes...

I was thinking, something is wrong with settinggs, then I discovered Af fine tuning, but lens is still soft, and poor in focusing - not so poor, but enough to get you on this page, where you can confirm this...
You have awakened a very old thread and your answers as well as other suggestions are like found in one of the replies. You might also want to check out the multiple examples (over 2000) of real-world performance with the various versions of the 18-55 (actually only two) on its lens club thread:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/122-lens-clubs/45425-kit-lens-club.html

The reviews might also be helpful:

Pentax DA Zoom Lenses - Reviews and Specifications - SLR and Interchangeable Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database

Pentax SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL WR - Lab Test / Review (same optically as your lens)

I can also provide the following couple of bullet points:
  • The Pentax 18-55 is better optically than most competing product from other makers, but it is still an inexpensive consumer zoom
  • The 18-55 kit (all versions) is noticeably soft at 55mm wide open. The solution is to back off to 50mm and/or stop-down
  • Similarly, corner performance at 18mm is also soft. F/8 is our friend.
  • Best performance overall at all focal lengths one or two stops below maximum aperture.
  • If you are shooting this lens on your K-3, you will likely be consistently disappointed at full resolution. Downsampled to 16 Mpx and you may be happier.
If you feel that your lens is not delivering as well as it should and it is a recent purchase, a return to your dealer or Ricoh/Pentax for exchange may be an option. If you are just wanting to post regarding your assessment, adding your own review would be real good as might a new thread in the lens section of this site with a title like "18-55 II sucks on K-3"


Steve

(...many thousands of photos with the v1 version of the 18-55 on my K10D, some quite good...almost never use it on the K-3...)

Last edited by stevebrot; 11-25-2015 at 05:23 PM.
11-26-2015, 02:55 AM   #22
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Yes, I was thinking about returning it, because maybe it's just a bad copy...

I found this lens in version 18-55 WR II, like it is mine, was marked in overall scores as less sharp then its original, first vesion... Mine have silver, and older version green ring...

When I purchased this camera, I was reading reviews about this lens ( obviously most of them of the older, or non wr version ), and find it can be decent for a start, but I was surprised with overall softness in my pics.

I imported some of the pics in photoscape ( very simple editing program with lot of features, I recommend it highly as an fast and very good alternative )

and I just add some sharpness - and pics was much much better immediately ...

At first,
I was not sure what is the reason, because maybe files from Pentax are little soft, which is also known fact.
I visited the store here, and attach some other lens on my Pentax K3 body, and yes, the results was better.

My conclusion

I found the lens, which are weak in sharpness are not good solution for camera of this high resolution, simply because you can zoom your picture so much, and every, even tiny blur is much noticeable, if you pair your pics with 16 Mp, or lower sensor jpegs.

----

That's why I immediately order one Sigma 17-70 2.8-4.5 Macro, and Pentax DA 35 2.4, which is, from what I read here best bucks and excellent in sharpness...

--

Lens are not arrived yet, but soon when they do, I will post some comments here
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