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03-23-2011, 08:05 AM   #1
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Focusing screen for *ist DS?

I need a new focusing screen for my ist DS. I believe I need the LL-60 or LF-60 as I would rather not use the LI-60 AF Scale Matte.

I understand, while similar, the LL/LF-80 and ML/MF-60 are not compatible.

I also understand I should not use a split-image focusing screen for the *ist DS because AF functions and multi-zone metering can be "confused" by the use of such a screen - according to Pentax (*ist DS Focusing Screen - Photo.net Pentax Forum).

Am I correct in my assumptions?

Thank you.

03-23-2011, 08:40 AM   #2
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Here is a great site with many links for DS related questions.

The Racehorse List

There is a Focus Screen link in the right column that links back to a DPReview thread. Any discussion by Godfrey on Focus Screens is highly reliable.

Focusing screens: Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

Tim
03-23-2011, 09:29 AM   #3
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Thanks! This has been rather frustrating - ever since I tried to "clean" the focusing screen. Next I get to figure out how best to clean the mirror. I have the supplies, just not the talent apparently.
03-23-2011, 09:49 AM   #4
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I'm not so sure a split image on the DS would be any more problematic than it is on any other model for metering. Some people have issues with spot metering apparently but i haven't found that to be the case with my k7 (though i don't often use spot metering in camera as i have a good separate spot meter)
I think the most complaints come from brite screen technology screens causing a metering issue but it is consistent so you can dial it in with ev compensation

I use a focusingscreen.com k3 screen in my k7 and am actually considering ordering one for my DS as well if i keep it and sell on my k10 instead. it's a great screen the installation is easy and it comes with better tools than the jin finance screens

they offer 10 screens for the ds

Focusing Screen

03-23-2011, 12:19 PM   #5
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Thanks eddie. Focusing Screen looks like it might be the route to go. Sure beats Katz Eye's prices.
03-23-2011, 12:51 PM   #6
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that was why i opted for them. A little more than jin finance but a good selection of screens. it will come with a shim as well. i didn't need it on the k7 but ymmv
03-23-2011, 02:00 PM   #7
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Focusing screen has nothing to do with auto-focus. The auto-focus sensor is behind the mirror, before the light hits the focusing screen. The camera can do autofocus even without focusing screen.

Split-image focusing screen definitely fouls up spot metering. The effect is more noticeable with slow lenses.

The -60 screens are difficult to find. Partly because they been out of production for so long, partly because owners of K10D and K20D also use -60 screens for consistent metering with manual lenses.

The -60 screens fit K10D and K20D. I think the reverse is also true: the DS can use the -80 screens. Metering may be affected. But if you don't use manual lenses, the effect may be mild.
03-23-2011, 02:46 PM   #8
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So, you think I could use the LL-80 & LF-80 with automatic lenses? That would be good news, but it seems to contradict the letter posted in the link in my first post. Any thoughts on that?

03-23-2011, 11:06 PM   #9
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I don't have the *ist DS to test. But my 2 K10Ds each has an LL-60 screen. Pentax also says the LL-60 screen is not compatible with K10D.

Just this statement from Pentax makes anything they say doubtful, "This is because AF functions and multi-zone metering can be "confused" by the use of such a screen."

Heck, autofocus works perfectly without any screen.

This is directly from Pentax's website:

Q: What focusing screens are compatible with the K10D and K20D?

A: The K10D and K20D are compatible with the LL-80 series of screens comprising the LF-80 AF Frame Matte (the standard screen) and the optional LL-80 AF Divided Matte and LI-80 AF Scale Matte screens. These can be purchased on our webstore at: http://pentaxwebstore.com/products/photo_imaging/photo_accessories/viewfinders

The older LI-60, LF-60 and LL-60 screens (for the *ist D, *ist DS and *ist DS2 cameras) are not compatible with the K10D or K20D. They are physically the same size as the new screens, but because they are a slightly different color they will actually cause an exposure error when used in the K10D or K20D.


If there is any exposure error with my K10Ds, I don't know about it.

Last edited by SOldBear; 03-23-2011 at 11:13 PM.
03-24-2011, 07:39 AM   #10
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It sounds like I could derive the reverse of that from your experience then. Something like:

The LL-80 & LF-80 screens are physically the same size as the LF-60 and LL-60 screens, but because they are a slightly different color they will actually cause an exposure error when used in the *ist D, *ist DS and *ist DS2 cameras (which may or may not be observable).

I have to wonder, too, if Katz Eye and Focusing Screen worry about matching the different colors Pentax refers to.

Thanks everyone. I think I might give an LL-80 a shot.

Last edited by steveald; 03-24-2011 at 09:52 AM.
03-24-2011, 08:04 AM   #11
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KAtzeye it's the britescreen that shows the exposure error. the plus is they allow a lot more light through so focusing is easier. I have used a medium format britescreen on a friends Hassleblad and it was a joy to use in low light (not a katzeye but one of the older companies that is no longer made the same)

I'm not sure a slight colour variance will make a huge difference. like mentioned above apparently it is on the slow lenses this becomes an issue apparently (say 5.6 on the kit at 55) I rarely if ever use a lens that slow but i did use the kit for a month and noticed no exposure issues (though to be honest i didn't go out of my way to test for them) for me the benefit of faster more accurate manual focus outweighs small exposure errors as i shoot RAW all the time so pulling or pushing exposure 1/34 o 1/2 stop is not an issue
properly exposed but OOF does me no good, there is enough exposure latitude with any digital to deal with a half stop in either direction. If I was shooting slides this would be more of a concern (but the camera i shoot slides on i meter hand held)
03-24-2011, 09:55 AM   #12
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Well, hopefully I'll be able to report any issues I encounter. Unfortunately, I may fall into the category that has them - mostly autofocus shooting with slow lenses (3.4 - 5.6).
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