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04-09-2009, 12:57 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Horst-Helmut Quote
Yes and no. When that green hexagon lights up the middle focus point indicator also flashes briefly. I'm aware that only middle point is usable with manual lenses. Still my camera/lenses off-focuses most of the shots when trying to focus using the green hexagon.
I find the problem is that the hexagon seems "slow". It shows up a fraction of a second *after* good focus has been achieved, and if I'm still turning the ring, I'm actually *past* the point of good focus. If I then stop turning the ring, often the hexagon goes out again, and comes back when I back the ring up - but again, too late. So it's kind of a slow and frustrating back and forth process before I finally can get the hexagon to stay lit. If/when I ever do, it's generally pretty accurate - at least, after taking into account the known fact that the AF system tends to front focus a bit under tungsten light. But overall, the process is still *much* slower than simply trusting my eyes, even with the stock focus screen on one of the pentamirror cameras (the O-ME53 magnifier helps). And I have terrible eyesight. It's just a matter of practice, really.

04-09-2009, 09:18 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by alderfall Quote
Do you prefer any of the split screens in specific? I know there has been a bit of discussion. I currently shoot with a K200D.

Jason
I actually prefer the matte screens. Until 1978 or so, that's all I had to use, and find the split screens and micro prisms more annoying than helpful. I do agree, however that the matte screen in my K10D is a bit less helpful than it might be. I'm on the lookout for an LL60 to see if that helps.
04-10-2009, 11:48 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
I find the problem is that the hexagon seems "slow". It shows up a fraction of a second *after* good focus has been achieved, and if I'm still turning the ring, I'm actually *past* the point of good focus. If I then stop turning the ring, often the hexagon goes out again, and comes back when I back the ring up - but again, too late. So it's kind of a slow and frustrating back and forth process before I finally can get the hexagon to stay lit.
Till mid-2007, I had several opportunities of observing a professional taking pictures of public events. He used two enormous Canon 1D bodies with appropriately large lenses. I noticed that he never used autofocus. He did a quick left and right with the focussing ring and took the picture. I have tried the same thing with the K200D but keep running into the "slow hexagon" phenomenon. He was not young either. I have poor eyesight, and I never achieved that kind of focus with even the MX. The only time I saw the picture "snap into focus" was with a Leicaflex SL2 and a microprism circle. I was then much younger, and the elasticity of my eyes was much higher.

As you have observed, practice will help even with poor vision.
04-10-2009, 12:29 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by chhayanat Quote
Till mid-2007, I had several opportunities of observing a professional taking pictures of public events. He used two enormous Canon 1D bodies with appropriately large lenses. I noticed that he never used autofocus. He did a quick left and right with the focussing ring and took the picture. I have tried the same thing with the K200D but keep running into the "slow hexagon" phenomenon. He was not young either. I have poor eyesight, and I never achieved that kind of focus with even the MX. The only time I saw the picture "snap into focus" was with a Leicaflex SL2 and a microprism circle. I was then much younger, and the elasticity of my eyes was much higher.

As you have observed, practice will help even with poor vision.
Yes. Expecting the image to "snap into focus" is not reasonable with a simple matte screen, especially at the size and brightness typical for APS-C cameras. But the whole "left and right with the focusing ring" bit is the key. I can see easily enough when I have the focus too far *behind* my subject and when I have it too far *in front*. I aim to get those two places as close as possible - so I'm only a little in front and a little behind - then set the focus ring half way between. That's basically the process I use, and I'm pretty quick and accurate with it at this point.

04-10-2009, 06:43 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Yes. Expecting the image to "snap into focus" is not reasonable with a simple matte screen, especially at the size and brightness typical for APS-C cameras. But the whole "left and right with the focusing ring" bit is the key. I can see easily enough when I have the focus too far *behind* my subject and when I have it too far *in front*. I aim to get those two places as close as possible - so I'm only a little in front and a little behind - then set the focus ring half way between. That's basically the process I use, and I'm pretty quick and accurate with it at this point.
Marc, your MF system is pretty much the same as mine. The key is to zone-in with a couple of quick twists. I generally ignore the green hexagon unless the screen is too dark or the depth of field too great. I have some split-prism/micro-prism screens on order to help with the former, and the latter is really a self-correcting problem anyway.
04-10-2009, 07:31 PM   #21
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that is actually the best way to do manual focus, and if done right it promises to providehigher accuracy than most af systems, it doesn't matter how good an eyesight one has, it's just the way the human eye+brain seems to work best (by comparison).

the mate screen in most af cameras is not trully a mate screen, it is some new age high luminosity barelly mate (junk), this is, i think, why you are not happy with it canada_rockies. when i look at my focusing screen on my old pentacon six, though it is comparatively dark, wow, what a difference: plain matte, you can actually see dof properly, i want one of those for my k20d. does anybody make good-old honest matte screens for our cameras?
04-11-2009, 02:59 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by nanok Quote
the mate screen in most af cameras is not trully a mate screen, it is some new age high luminosity barelly mate (junk), this is, i think, why you are not happy with it canada_rockies. when i look at my focusing screen on my old pentacon six, though it is comparatively dark, wow, what a difference: plain matte, you can actually see dof properly, i want one of those for my k20d. does anybody make good-old honest matte screens for our cameras?
I had the crazy idea once of sacrificing the matte ground glass on one of my folders. I figured I could cut 8 or 10 screens out of the one piece of glass, but when I measured the thickness, it was 4X too thick. So I put it all back together. Later on (in a saner moment) I chastised myself for even considering the destruction of a perfectly good folder.
04-12-2009, 01:36 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sean Nelson Quote
"M" or "K" lenses require manual setting of the aperture, manual focusing, and one button push on the camera to meter the scene and set the shutter speed accordingly. You need to buy a lens with an "A" in the designation (ie, "FA", "FAJ", "D-FA", "DA", etc) in order to get auto-focus.

Have a look at my Pictorial Guide to Using Manual Lenses on the DPReview forum. It's written for the K100D Super, but the K200 is very similar. It'll tell you how to set the camera to use manual lenses and what you need to do to actually shoot with them. It's not as hard as it looks!
I have a manual focus KA lens that has the AE contacts. AV, TV, P, and TAV, all work great. No use of the green button which can be tricky at times. It is one of my favorate lenses!

75-200 f4.5 AUTO MACRO ZOOM

Lens is a push pull design which took some getting use to.

04-12-2009, 05:17 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sean Nelson Quote
You need to buy a lens with an "A" in the designation (ie, "FA", "FAJ", "D-FA", "DA", etc) in order to get auto-focus.
Woops! This is a blatantly wrong statement that nobody seems to have called me on. But I'd better set it straight for the benefit of folks who are reading the thread (I'll go back and edit the original post too).

The "A" designation means auto-aperture, not auto-focus. The lenses which autofocus are those with "F" or "D" in the designation.
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