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08-29-2011, 07:02 AM   #16
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Thanks Octav -- I have considered the KatzEye screens. Given the current value of a K10D and my intention to upgrade within a year or so I don't want to put that much money into it.

08-29-2011, 11:41 AM   #17
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Update: post-it shim adjustment

I have a message into Pentax parts, but in the meantime I had a go at the Post-it fix. 1st MF test after adding a strip of Post-it to each side of the installed shim, trying to focus on the nail head indicated by the Post-it note:

Name:  _IGP5541.jpg
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Looks about spot on I'll try a proper shim if I can get it, but am hopeful for now. Thanks again for all the advice.

Update: 2nd test

Name:  _IGP5542.jpg
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Size:  62.3 KB

Again, looks good.

Last edited by baro-nite; 08-29-2011 at 11:57 AM. Reason: Updated with second image
08-29-2011, 12:06 PM   #18
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That was a quick fix... Congrats.
Guess your camera was always like that, but you just didn't know.
08-30-2011, 09:22 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by octavmandru Quote
Excuse me, but how is the AF adjusting going to help, since AF is fine and manual optical focusing is crooked? ...
...
OP clearly said: "AF is fine, manual focusing is giving bad results".
Oops! I should learn how to read.

Until yesterday I was perfect.

08-30-2011, 08:53 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
Thanks very much to all for your replies.


Yes, MF only. But I believe I have the diopter adjustment correct, and my understanding is that the diopter doesn't affect where in the image the focus appears to be sharpest, but rather whether or not anything appears in focus.
I had the same problem once, AF worked perfectly but manual was just a touch out. I found that the diopter was one click out.....
Just sayin.....
08-31-2011, 04:37 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by opfor Quote
I had the same problem once, AF worked perfectly but manual was just a touch out. I found that the diopter was one click out.....
Just sayin.....
Were your MF errors in a consistent direction (i.e., front or back) or just generally off?

BTW I hadn't known the proper way to adjust the VF diopter until reading this tip. And then I found another tip elsewhere that recommended using the grain of the matte screen rather than the etched lines to confirm diopter setting, and I think that is even better.
09-04-2011, 05:41 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
Were your MF errors in a consistent direction (i.e., front or back) or just generally off?

BTW I hadn't known the proper way to adjust the VF diopter until reading this tip. And then I found another tip elsewhere that recommended using the grain of the matte screen rather than the etched lines to confirm diopter setting, and I think that is even better.
I was back focusing just a touch. Just enough to drive me nuts with the shots I missed until I figured it out. Your link has been posted here before and works well. My first check would be to check the diopter before changing focusing screens.
Saying that, I have a k-10 screen in my K-20. It works for me.....
09-04-2011, 03:48 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
Marc, I feel very confident that the result does not match the view from the viewfinder, even when taking the greater DOF of the viewfinder into account. That is, I am confident that I had the subject (the word indicated by the arrow) in or nearly in the center of the in-focus range.
Who said the center was the right place for it? Your pictures simply suggest that you should have put the target toward the front of the range. That's the way it is on every camera I've tested; as far as I can tell, this is normal. Shimming may have "fixed" that, but it's also likely that this "fix" has thrown it off in the case where the DOF does match. You might want to check that if you haven't.

09-05-2011, 03:29 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Who said the center was the right place for it? Your pictures simply suggest that you should have put the target toward the front of the range. That's the way it is on every camera I've tested; as far as I can tell, this is normal. Shimming may have "fixed" that, but it's also likely that this "fix" has thrown it off in the case where the DOF does match. You might want to check that if you haven't.
OK, 'center' is a poor word choice when discussing DOF. I'll do some more testing when I get the chance, as I do want to confirm this one way of the other. Unfortunately I don't have the gear to take a shot of the view through the VF.
09-05-2011, 09:08 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
OK, 'center' is a poor word choice when discussing DOF. I'll do some more testing when I get the chance, as I do want to confirm this one way of the other. Unfortunately I don't have the gear to take a shot of the view through the VF.
The focus point is 1/3 into the DOF, 2/3 of the field is further from you. That's the way optics work. Doesn't seem logical, but ...
09-05-2011, 02:45 PM - 1 Like   #26
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Actually, it's not a constant 1/3 an 2/3 in back; it varies by focal length. But that's kind of a separate issue from the question of how the focus screen lies about DOF, I think.

As for testing, instead of worrying about taking oictures of the viewfinde,r do it by shooting text and noting how many lines appear readable in the viewfinder versus image. At large apertures, there will be fewer lines in focus in the viewfinder than in the image - that's normal, unfortunately. At small apertures, of course, there will be more in focus in the image than the viewfinder (except while doing a DOF preview, of course). Only at one particular aperture will you find the same number of lines in focus in both the viewfinder and the image. Might depend on focal length; I've never really tested. But it will probably be around f/3.5.

Once you find the aperture that produces the same *number* of lines in focus, then and only then would it really make sense to start worrying about *which* lines appear to be in focus. If the viewfinder and image both show six lines in focus but a different set of six lines,then shimming the focus screen would make sense.
09-16-2011, 07:56 AM   #27
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Getting back to this ... Marc, thanks for outlining a sensible test procedure. I tried it and find the best match at f/4.5. Tested with the DA* 200 and the DA 16-45 @ 45, and in both cases the # of in-focus lines is a good match at f/4.5, and it is pretty much the same lines in focus. This is with my Post-It shims still in place; it's a fussy enough procedure that I don't want to re-test with the shims out unless necessary. If anything there is still a very slight "back focus", but much finer than I would be able to fix with paper shims. Unfortunately I never got a call back from Pentax parts; maybe they don't deal with retail customers, or maybe won't bother with something so cheap, so for now I'll stick with the Post-It fix.
09-20-2011, 01:42 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
Thanks Octav -- I have considered the KatzEye screens. Given the current value of a K10D and my intention to upgrade within a year or so I don't want to put that much money into it.
A cheaper option is to buy a Canon focussing screen for full frame cameras, and cut it down to the size of the K10. I have done it with the model EC-A, that is a screen with a finely structured microprism area in the centre of the image. It is good for focussing with manual lenses up to f4. Perfect with my DA*300/4. Only disadvantage is that spot metering is off.

I have read recommendations of the EE-S model (or others that finalizes in -S and are big enough). That are special screens for manual focussing with a sort of microprisms on the whole screen. Disadvantage is that they are 2 steps darker. Spot metering seems to be ok.

Cheers - Klaus
09-20-2011, 02:21 PM   #29
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Thanks Klaus -- I may give that a try some day, although precision mechanical work isn't my forte. I had read this and I think some other threads about how to install the Canon screen. For now I'm going to see if I can improve my MF technique, now that I seem to have my focus screen shimmed more or less correctly.
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