Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
01-17-2019, 09:50 AM - 1 Like   #31
Pentaxian
Site Supporter
normhead's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Near Algonquin Park
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 31,346
And with reference to the above... it's quite possible that a kit lens or a one step above kit like the 18-135 or 16-85 will give you better results than what you are shooting with. I personally bought my first *ist D so I could use my older glass. In actual fact, I never used any of it more than once. With the camera I got the kit lens, a Sigma 70-300 and an FA 50 1.7. Once I saw the results with those lenses I saw no need to use my older glass. All those lenses are now replaced. The kit with the 18-135, the 70-300 with the DA*60-250 and 1.4 TC, and the FA 50 1.7 by the DA*55 1.4.

In my experience, it's a mistake to not pick up the 18-55 or 18-50 or 18-135 with the camera. Sure you may like your old glass, but at least then you have something to compare it to. Of course I made the same mistake with my K-1. I didn't buy the 28-105 with the camera body, because I wanted something else. In the end I bought the 28-105 and paid a couple of hundred bucks more than I needed to because I didn't buy it as a kit lens. Long story short, when you buy a camera, buy a lens designed for that camera. Then you understand the cameras capabilities. And if in the end you learn you want something better, at least you'll be making an informed decision.

I have some of the best film lenses, a 35 3.5 and a 50 1.4, and I never use them. Great in 1970 does not translate to great in 2019. And I still have images taken with my original kit that hold up against anything I'm shooting with today. There are still 18-55, 70-300 and FA 50 images in my favourites list, even with all I've spent on better lenses since then. Some look at kit lenses as waste of money. I look at them as what you use until you understand what you really want. And for many, they never want anything more.


Last edited by normhead; 01-17-2019 at 10:12 AM.
01-17-2019, 10:11 AM   #32
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
pres589's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Lawrence, KS
Photos: Albums
Posts: 2,171
An 18-135 and a 55-300 would be a killer pair and give a noticable upgrade in IQ over the lenses mentioned. I do think there's real value in a fully manual lens that doesn't communicate with the body, so that stop-down metering is required, and actually looking for focus is required. This kind of thing taught me a lot.

Better, more modern glass would be nice, but getting the most out of the old glass already owned is not without benefit that will pay off when better glass is finally sourced. My 2 cents.
01-17-2019, 10:20 AM - 1 Like   #33
Pentaxian
Site Supporter
normhead's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Near Algonquin Park
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 31,346
QuoteOriginally posted by pres589 Quote
An 18-135 and a 55-300 would be a killer pair and give a noticable upgrade in IQ over the lenses mentioned. I do think there's real value in a fully manual lens that doesn't communicate with the body, so that stop-down metering is required, and actually looking for focus is required. This kind of thing taught me a lot.

Better, more modern glass would be nice, but getting the most out of the old glass already owned is not without benefit that will pay off when better glass is finally sourced. My 2 cents.
A good point for anyone who wasn't brought up with manual focus. Those of us who did that because we had to (because there was nothing else) might find old glass nothing more than tedious. There is value in learning old school discipline, especially for macro or narrow depth of field images. But those skills aren't always applicable. Learning how to select a focus point that keeps your whole image in focus without the benefit of a distance scale /DoF guide is probably more relevant these days than shooting with one of my super taks.
01-17-2019, 11:35 AM   #34
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Gladys, Virginia
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 19,107
QuoteOriginally posted by pres589 Quote
An 18-135 and a 55-300 would be a killer pair and give a noticable upgrade in IQ over the lenses mentioned. I do think there's real value in a fully manual lens that doesn't communicate with the body, so that stop-down metering is required, and actually looking for focus is required. This kind of thing taught me a lot.

Better, more modern glass would be nice, but getting the most out of the old glass already owned is not without benefit that will pay off when better glass is finally sourced. My 2 cents.
I will say that with landscape photography, using live view and manual focusing is sometimes the best way to go. Unfortunately, the Km doesn't have live view due to its CCD sensor.

01-17-2019, 12:36 PM - 1 Like   #35
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
pres589's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Lawrence, KS
Photos: Albums
Posts: 2,171
Maybe an M 200 f4 and a magnifying eye piece would be worthy purchases... But I don't know if the M 200 f4 is any better than an early 55-300 DA-L which costs about the same and actually zooms.
01-17-2019, 12:50 PM - 1 Like   #36
New Member




Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 6
Original Poster
Hi gentlemen,

today in the morning the weather was again quite good, so I took the Sigma 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 for couple of test shots. Everything was shot in aperture priority at f/8 as suggested. The results are following.

The Untersberg mountain:

Comparison of ISO 100 and ISO 200, original JPEG from camera, 100% crop, shot at 200mm end



- The resolution seems to be significantly better at ISO 100 than ISO 200, but still the ISO 200 is way better than the photo from yesterday taken with the Sonnar
- The photo at ISO 200 seems to have little bit of motion blur, so I need to make more tests
- Although the IQ is worse in the ISO 200, the noise is not as pronounced. However when taken to Lightroom there is no noise at Sharpen 25 for the ISO 100 while it shows significant noise on the ISO 200 at the same setting. (Sharpen 25 only to demonstrate the difference.)

The alpine landscape:

Original JPEG from the camera shrank to 1200px, shot at 73mm, ISO 100


Full size photo.

- Very good resolution throughout the image compared to the shot from the Helios, especially when looking at the road texture and snow touching the road
- ISO 100 and ISO 200 seem very comparable
- Good brightness, test shots with +0.5ev and +1ev as suggested by one of the commenters seemed to have been overexposed in the sky part
- Since the camera does not have detailed JPEG processing settings, I tried the "Custom image" setting:
- Bright made the dark part darker, but for example the tree was just black then
- Landscape and Vibrant gave the image more dynamic range and bit of saturation, but the overall brightness went down


So generally speaking it looks to me that as long as the lens supplies good picture then the camera is ok. But once the picture comming from the lens si suboptimal then it wreaks havoc on the final image...
01-17-2019, 12:56 PM - 1 Like   #37
Pentaxian




Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 1,458
To summarize my comments in post #22-

1. Use a reliably good lens. Even the 18-55mm kit lens can yield fine results at mid apertures if not used wide open. Use AF, and get your focus by having your camera's AF focus set to center point only spot-focus, then concentrate it on a part of your scene having an edge of some kind, and using the half-press of the shutter button to establish focus, important- hold the focus with the continuous half-press while you reposition the camera to frame your shot. The several-times mentioned DA 18-135mm lens is much better for reliable focus, as well as other advantages, over the 18-55mm kit lens, so especially with the kit lens- using the half-press more than once to get good focus is a good idea.

2. Set up your camera's imaging parameters to its best performance. These settings will be different than those of a Nikon camera, or any other brand.

3. Then shoot your images in best-quality JPEGs+RAW. You should then be getting fine imaging from your JPEG output. Compare this with the simultaneous RAW file of the shot. If the RAW file does not look at least as good as the JPEG, then you know you need to improve your post-processing for RAW images- it is not the camera. (except that RAW post process may not be identical to that of a RAW file from a Nikon camera)

Doing the above will give you a truer assessment of your camera's real capabilities.

Last edited by mikesbike; 01-17-2019 at 03:15 PM.
01-17-2019, 01:00 PM   #38
Senior Moderator
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
BigMackCam's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Durham, England
Posts: 11,066
QuoteOriginally posted by mikesbike Quote
To summarize my comments in post #22-

1. Use a reliably good lens. Even the 18-55mm kit lens can yield fine results at mid apertures if not used wide open. Use AF, and get your focus by having your camera's AF focus set to center point only spot-focus, then concentrate it on a part of your scene having and edge of some kind, and using the half-press of the shutter button to establish focus, important- hold the focus with the continuous half-press while you reposition the camera to frame your shot. The several-times mentioned DA 18-135mm lens is much better for reliable focus, as well as other advantages, over the 18-55mm kit lens, so especially with the kit lens- using the half-press more than once to get good focus is a good idea.

2. Set up your camera's imaging parameters to its best performance. These settings will be different than those of a Nikon camera, or any other brand.

3. Then shoot your images in best-quality JPEGs+RAW. You should then be getting fine imaging from your JPEG output. Compare this with the simultaneous RAW file of the shot. If the RAW file does not look at least as good as the JPEG, then you know you need to improve your post-processing for RAW images- it is not the camera.

Doing the above will give you a truer assessment of your camera's real capabilities.
Excellent advice, Mike!

01-17-2019, 02:47 PM   #39
Junior Member




Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Adelaide, South Australia
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 39
Out of left field

Hi all,
When I first bought my K200d and used it with my manual 50 and 80-210 zoom I found that they were all out of focus.

Amongst the things I have learnt, I struggle with manual focus, mainly because of my eyes focussing at different points. I now take my best/sharpest lens and auto focus on a point, then adjust the eyepiece diopter to get it as Sharp/crisp as possible. Now my manual shots are better, but still not as good as the auto focus, even on the 2008 k200d.

With this camera there is no fine focus adjustment ability so you are limited if the lens requires this.

Another thing I do is to find the lens sweet spot and use that, typically f5.6 to f10. Apart from Astro and night shots I rarely go lower than f4.

If you can borrow and test your Km with a plastic fantastic DA35 or 50 in auto mode and not get good clean images at ISOs less than 1600 then I think you may have a real camera issue not lens issue.

I see no noise till the max ISO of 1600 on the k200 and you have a newer model than my old one.

Hope this helps.

PS join a camera club, some oldie (60+) will have Pentax experience from film cameras and also be able to help

Greg
01-17-2019, 03:05 PM - 1 Like   #40
Pentaxian




Join Date: Dec 2012
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 729
I do not know the Sigma, but you can also try it around 170-180 mm where it can be much sharper compared to 200 mm.
01-17-2019, 03:11 PM   #41
Pentaxian




Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 1,458
QuoteOriginally posted by Greg1956 Quote
PS join a camera club, some oldie (60+) will have Pentax experience from film cameras and also be able to help
There are plenty of those right here!
01-17-2019, 03:14 PM - 1 Like   #42
Senior Moderator
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
BigMackCam's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Durham, England
Posts: 11,066
QuoteOriginally posted by billdotjr Quote
- The resolution seems to be significantly better at ISO 100 than ISO 200, but still the ISO 200 is way better than the photo from yesterday taken with the Sonnar
- The photo at ISO 200 seems to have little bit of motion blur, so I need to make more tests
- Although the IQ is worse in the ISO 200, the noise is not as pronounced. However when taken to Lightroom there is no noise at Sharpen 25 for the ISO 100 while it shows significant noise on the ISO 200 at the same setting. (Sharpen 25 only to demonstrate the difference.)
First of all, I applaud you for listening to the advice and opinions offered, acting on them, examining the results, and posting back to let us know how you got on. Many folks who get frustrated with such problems simply lose hope, or refuse to believe the problem isn't with the camera (it usually isn't ). So you've set an important example for others experiencing similar (or any other) problems. Thank you for that

It's very encouraging to see the improvement in your results. A few comments:

When shooting at 200mm with your Sigma zoom lens, bear in mind that almost every consumer-grade zoom lens (and even many mid-to-pro-grade models) will demonstrate poor (or, at least, reduced) performance at focal length extremes - so, at the very widest setting, or the very longest setting (or both). You'll almost certainly find that your Sigma performs better at 150mm than it does at 200mm, yet the field of view won't be hugely different. Similarly, for wide angle work, it may or may not perform all that well at 18mm, but could be much better at, say, 24mm. Experimentation is key, here... but we can almost-always say that a zoom lens set to maximum focal length won't perform at its best

Regarding motion blur... With 35mm film or so-called "full frame" digital cameras, the "reciprocal rule" states that you need to shoot at a shutter speed of at least 1 / focal length to avoid significant blur due to camera shake. Hence, if you were shooting at 200mm on a full frame camera, you'd ideally want to pick a shutter speed of 1/200s or faster. For an APS-C sensor camera such as your K-m, the formula is 1 / (focal length x 1.5). So, if you're shooting at 200mm on your K-m, you want a shutter speed of 1/300s or faster. If, instead, you're shooting at 50mm, you need a minimum shutter speed of 1/75s or faster. Of course, in-camera image stabilisation ("shake reduction") means you can often shoot at lower speeds, but what I've suggested is a good starting point.

Lastly, regarding noise and sharpening... It's fully expected that a raw ISO 200 image will be noisier than ISO 100, and images will become progressively noisier and less detailed as the ISO increases (the camera's JPEG engine will progressively apply more extreme noise reduction as ISO increases such that the difference is much less noticeable in JPEG files, but at the expense of detail). In post-processing with Lightroom, it's important that you switch off sharpening until you've completed all your other tasks. Then, set your sharpening as required - perhaps +25 - and set the "masking" level to +80 or thereabouts. The masking will reduce (though not eliminate) the amount of sharpening applied to noise, whilst still applying it fully to edges and larger details. In fact, there's an argument that you might not need any sharpening whatsoever in your raw processing. Instead, you can apply the necessary noise reduction, then export to JPEG at whatever size of image you require for final viewing, optionally with export sharpening enabled. And don't forget, viewing your images at 100% reproduction doesn't offer a meaningful assessment of image noise. If you can't see the noise when your image is resized to final output dimensions, it's irrelevant

Last edited by BigMackCam; 01-17-2019 at 04:05 PM.
01-17-2019, 03:14 PM   #43
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
UncleVanya's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2014
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 14,705
QuoteOriginally posted by mikesbike Quote
There are plenty of those right here!
I'm younger than that but have loads of film experience given that my first 220 roll film camera was at age 6...
01-17-2019, 03:26 PM - 4 Likes   #44
New Member




Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 17
I have a K-M that I mostly use for general record shots around the workshop and home, having picked it up for 'spares or repair' off eBay, and in this role it easy to forget what a capable camera it is. I did have an idea of dedicating it to an M42 system using my old Takumars and Russian lenses, but I would say that the metering with these older manual lenses can be a bit variable, as can determining correct focus, and a couple of test shots are sometimes needed to check and tweak exposure. But paired with later AF lenses (even budget oriented ones) things get a whole lot easier. I actually find the K3 easier and more consistent to use and with the older manual lenses, but I'd say the K-M is still more than capable of displaying the qualities of the better lenses available.

Here are a few samples (just record or test shots) with various lenses and settings I found from a quick search of my archive.

Pentax M 1:2.8 28mm 1/180 (with flash, no aperture reported)


Tamron 177D AF 28-80 F3.5/5.6 Aspherical @70mm 1/60 F5.6 ISO100


Pentax DA50mm 1/20 F2.8 ISO400


Pentax DA 18-55mm @33mm 1/500 F9 ISO800


Pentax DA 18-55mm @21mm 1/50 F4 ISO800
01-17-2019, 03:59 PM   #45
Pentaxian
mcgregni's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Surrey, England
Posts: 2,543
Was it the K20 or the K7 where they first improved the stop down metering accuracy ? I believe that before this people were having more issues and inconsistencies. Maybe the move to the CMOS type sensor played a part also....?

Anyway, OP, I hope you find one or two good modern lenses within your means and put into practice the advice here. A DSLR, even a K-m, is a great photographic tool when matched up with the right lenses and accessories, and very rewarding as a skill and hobby to get stuck into!
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
camera, chase, color, colour, composition, controls, dslr, f/2, helios, histogram, jpeg, k-m, lenses, limit, nikon, noise, pentax, pentax help, photography, photos, pm, question, sharpness, troubleshooting
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Shutterbug Magazine disappointed in KP resolution ckbboy Pentax KP 7 09-26-2017 04:57 AM
Anybody else disappointed with focus peaking? Edgar_in_Indy Pentax DSLR Discussion 91 03-29-2017 05:38 PM
Very disappointed with K 5 photos whbroker Pentax K-5 16 02-25-2012 12:55 PM
Disappointed by the K7 dcreed Photographic Technique 45 05-26-2009 06:55 PM
Give me advice about my Disappointed new *istD thongnd Pentax DSLR Discussion 22 04-01-2007 07:49 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:50 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top