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11-19-2010, 08:17 AM   #1
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could be happier with my K100D; help

Hi

Apologies straight away for posting multiple queries/thoughts in one thread, but they are all related to my K100D (or me!).

Here are a few observations related to the images from the K100D (my only DSLR). I almost always shoot JPEG. I mainly do some casual photography of family, few birds on free weekends (they are rare arent they?) etc. Like to experiment with rain, night shots etc. but dont end up doing as much as I would like.

a) many are oversaturated (yellow) and need to be corrected. Especially ones I take in the outdoors. I do birds with a Tamron 500/f8 mirror handheld.

b) are often blurred. No, I dont have a tremor
This is mainly indoors, with either the 16-45 or Sigma 70-300.
I have a feeling the SR is not really functioning.

Not ALL images are blurred; I do get good ones. Perhaps the focus is not right sometimes (I guess these can be easily differentiated).

c) few images taken recently with a 100/f4 manual I recently acquired have come very well with superb skin tone and sharpness. So I guess theres that much of lens related factor as well.

I have yet to fully understand and get to terms with 'stop down metering' using the AE-lock button with the M lens. Suggestions on this would help too.

What should I be doing? (with tight budget in mind)
i) Get a new body - that will be more M lens friendly, better SR, better color rendition? An upgrade would be to a used body, not a new one.
ii) Get better lenses for indoor
iii) theres nothing wrong; keep trying with steady hands, as all bodies have plusses, minuses. All images will require some level correction sharpening etc.
iv) none of the above (you tell me)

I have uploaded few good pics in an album recently.
gibikote's Album: Gibikote - PentaxForums.com
Thanks in advance!

Sridhar

11-19-2010, 09:24 AM   #2
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Ok, let's try to help.

a) It's possible that the lens affects the automatic white balance from the camera. You can always set it manually though, or fix on post-processing, just shoot in RAW.

b) I don't know how good is the SR in the K100D, but it could be focus instead of motion blur. Without sample images it's hard to say. As you mentioned indoors, I believe it's in low light situations. If so, the culprit is certainly the AF system, which isn't as good in those older bodies under low light situations.

c) If you are able to take sharp pics with a manual lens, then b) is probably related to the poor AF performance in the older bodies. If you enjoy using manual lenses, you could invest on a split screen.

Anyway, I know that at least with your mirror lens, you won't get stellar sharpness regardless of the body. I would expect you to be able to get sharp images with your Sigma though. In that case, upgrading to a K-7 (or if you don't mind the less professional bodies, a K-r) could improve your results substantially.
11-19-2010, 11:22 PM   #3
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Thanks for the suggestions. Shall keep close watch and try to analyse further.
Not sure I want to shoot RAW often; I have not found an easy converting software and it takes more time converting them etc.

Any K100D users with similar observations?
11-20-2010, 07:02 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by gibikote Quote
Hi

Apologies straight away for posting multiple queries/thoughts in one thread, but they are all related to my K100D (or me!).
These are well posed, important questions; I hope I can help a little.

QuoteQuote:
Here are a few observations related to the images from the K100D (my only DSLR). I almost always shoot JPEG. I mainly do some casual photography of family, few birds on free weekends (they are rare arent they?) etc. Like to experiment with rain, night shots etc. but dont end up doing as much as I would like.

a) many are oversaturated (yellow) and need to be corrected. Especially ones I take in the outdoors. I do birds with a Tamron 500/f8 mirror handheld.
If you get ANY 500/8 handheld photos you are doing well indeed. I don't know why some (rather than all) are oversaturated, but that's not hard to fix.

QuoteQuote:
b) are often blurred. No, I dont have a tremor
This is mainly indoors, with either the 16-45 or Sigma 70-300.
I have a feeling the SR is not really functioning.

Not ALL images are blurred; I do get good ones. Perhaps the focus is not right sometimes (I guess these can be easily differentiated).
It is most likely your technique; perhaps you are punching the shutter button causing motion blur. You can do some tests:

Put the camera on a table or tripod and take some time delayed or remote triggered photos in the troublesome exposure range, SR on & SR off. If they are ok, you are the problem, not the camera.

Look carefully at 100% crops of problematic images for motion smear (bright points of light extended into short lines.)

Shoot at a tilted target. Then you'll be sure something should be in focus. Then you can also check on focus repeatability, by you or by AF.

Practice SQUEEZING the shutter button - thumb below the camera, finger on the button, slowly close the thumb-finger distance - do not push the camera down with your finger.

QuoteQuote:
I have yet to fully understand and get to terms with 'stop down metering' using the AE-lock button with the M lens. Suggestions on this would help too.
Practice and take some notes. Sometimes a particular exposure compensation is required for a particular lens. Use M mode (but Av mode may work with the K100D).

QuoteQuote:
What should I be doing? (with tight budget in mind)
i) Get a new body - that will be more M lens friendly, better SR, better color rendition? An upgrade would be to a used body, not a new one.
I doubt that a new body will be more M friendly, have much better SR, or better color rendition. BUT a K-x or newer body would be much better at high ISO, therefore your low light success rate would be MUCH better.

QuoteQuote:
ii) Get better lenses for indoor
Good new lenses never hurt & a faster lens will decrease low-light motion blur problems; but you should be sure your technique is good too.

QuoteQuote:
iii) theres nothing wrong; keep trying with steady hands, as all bodies have plusses, minuses. All images will require some level correction sharpening etc.
iv) none of the above (you tell me)
Your experiments will tell you if you've technique problems, the ISO advantage of the K-x & newer cameras is real.

Dave

PS sometimes focus is off or there's motion blur in an important photo. I've found FocusMagic to be a useful tool in correcting such problems (yes, it can actually make a bad lens better, or bring an out of focus image into focus.) It is worth its small investment in my independent opinion.


Last edited by newarts; 11-20-2010 at 07:10 AM.
11-20-2010, 08:31 AM   #5
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With regards to M lenses

Use manual mode and DOF preview; there is an indication in the viewfinder (at that moment) about the number of stops over- or underexposure; adjust the shutter speed or the aperture for correct exposure.

With regards to saturation:
Check your camera setting

With regards to raw conversion;
any program that supports batch processing should do the trick; I mostly use UFRAW (on windows with a good old-fashioned batch file with my preferred settings,)
11-20-2010, 09:08 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by gibikote Quote
...
a) many are oversaturated (yellow) and need to be corrected. Especially ones I take in the outdoors. I do birds with a Tamron 500/f8 mirror handheld.
...
This sounds like an issue with automatic white balance. Try explicit settings. In general a lower value (of Ks) should help with yellowish tint (and create a bluish one if going too low).
11-21-2010, 04:52 AM   #7
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thanks to all for taking time to help me getter results. The summary would be there is no short-cut
The good news is its quite likely my camera is not at fault; and with lot of homework, my technique (and thus results) should improve; and I save some dough
11-21-2010, 05:59 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by gibikote Quote
a) many are oversaturated (yellow) and need to be corrected.
If this occurs outdoors, it is probably not a white balance issue. Try dialing back the saturation in the JPG develop settings. I always have to do that when I shoot highly saturated subjects like flowers. I also suggest that you chose the "natural" rather than the "bright" setting. The latter boosts the saturation artificially.

QuoteOriginally posted by gibikote Quote
b) are often blurred.
Are you waiting long enough for the SR to be ready? It can take almost a second for the SR to be initialised. You'll see the hand icon light up in the viewfinder when it is ready.

QuoteOriginally posted by gibikote Quote
I have yet to fully understand and get to terms with 'stop down metering' using the AE-lock button with the M lens. Suggestions on this would help too.
Just put the camera into manual, choose the aperture with the aperture ring on the lens and then press the AE-lock button to get a metering. You'll need to have all the settings in the camera right (allow aperture ring, choose shutter speed when pressing the AE-lock button, etc.). If you search for articles for this, you are sure to find some. I linked to one in my K100D Tips & Tricks article.

I don't think there is anything wrong with your K100D. It isn't true that its AF is not accurate. It is not very fast, but I have absolutely no trouble with accuracy. If you find that all your AF shots are somewhat out of focus, you may want to try an AF fine adjustment.

Hope this helps.

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