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03-13-2007, 06:03 AM   #1
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Personal Experiences with the BIG GUNS

This post is is not a rant but taken from experience with C*n*n and N*k*n systems vs Pentax. I shot sports photgraphy last winter and had the chance to use the three above mentioned brands above. The owner was a C*n*n advocate . My Cameras were the N*k*n D100 and the Pentax *istDL. I started with the C*n*n and told him I was switching to the N*k*n. The reason Ergonomics. Don't get me wrong the camera D20 was a good camera but was hard to switch settings. So I took out the N*k*n and shot with that. My own camera and I didn't feel comfortable with it. So I brought out the Pentax. This little camera did all and more than the big guns. Easy to use Switching settings was a breeze and the best shots that winter was from the Pentax in Manual mode.
Yes, I have all Manual lenses for the Pentax. (From my Spotmatic and K1000 days). The Pentax was snappy and light and easy use, Go Pentax.
I don't worry about frame per Sec. If you know your sport your timing is critical. I don't need 5 or 10 frames per sec. 3 is enough. Know where the action is ,focus with an adeqate DOF and go.

This is to say that Pentax scored a grand slam in my book. I still have all my manual lenses and I am thinking of getting some Autofocus lenses. The eyes ain't what they used to be. They should be a great addition to the K10D that sits in my camera bag.

So what am I shooting this year at the horse shows. It's not C*n*n or N*k*n to be sure. I could have extolled the virtues of the K10D but I think that has already been covered in these forums.

Sorry for the long post but I could have gone on longer. I cut it short.

Shoot Pentax and don't worry about the other brands. You got the best in yours hands right now.

TedP

03-13-2007, 06:26 AM   #2
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Hi there, Ted! I just realized this is your first post, so I'd like to say welcome!

Glad to hear that you are comfortable using your DL in the presence of the big brands - Nikon and Canon.

Enjoy the forums and look forward to seeing some more of your posts and some pictures!
03-13-2007, 06:45 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by TedP Quote
I still have all my manual lenses and I am thinking of getting some Autofocus lenses. The eyes ain't what they used to be. They should be a great addition to the K10D that sits in my camera bag.
You probably already know this, but in case you don't, consider gettting a Katzeye screen to enhance your manual focus experience. They are fairly pricey, but mine has helped me quite a bit.

Katz Eye™ Optics - Custom Focusing Screens

John
03-13-2007, 01:19 PM   #4
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This is coming from a sports pro and I guess it is all about techniques rather than the gear.

1D Mark III has a shutter speed of 11 frames per second which is insanely fast - not much skills will be involved. I have a friend buying out a 5D + 1D markII + Canon 600mm f4L IS being a first time DSLR user. He often photographed his dog running on the beach and that was all he did with his big gun Canon 600/4 which costs like a cheaper Japanese small car. The shots of his dog was always blurry and, as usual, he blames on the camera bodies and the lens.

Funnily he also owns canon 85/1.2L which I recommended him to use on protraits. He criticised the lens being too unsharp and a kit lens would do a better job...

I guess photography is more about how to use the gear rather than to own the best gear

03-13-2007, 01:44 PM   #5
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Here I go Again...

QuoteOriginally posted by roentarre Quote
This is coming from a sports pro and I guess it is all about techniques rather than the gear.

1D Mark III has a shutter speed of 11 frames per second which is insanely fast - not much skills will be involved. I have a friend buying out a 5D + 1D markII + Canon 600mm f4L IS being a first time DSLR user. He often photographed his dog running on the beach and that was all he did with his big gun Canon 600/4 which costs like a cheaper Japanese small car. The shots of his dog was always blurry and, as usual, he blames on the camera bodies and the lens.

Funnily he also owns canon 85/1.2L which I recommended him to use on protraits. He criticised the lens being too unsharp and a kit lens would do a better job...

I guess photography is more about how to use the gear rather than to own the best gear
It must be the mood I am in today...I am so disgusted by some people who can afford to buy a 'Blad and a Leaf digital back, or a Canon 1DS Mkll or what ever. They honestly think that as a result of that purchase they can say that they have talent...Pretty scary stuff. Makes me want to vomit. You know..Terry Richardson does most of his stuff on a 75$ canon fixed focal length camera and I tell you...He can shoots circles around those "photographers" with one eye poked out and a wheelchair. No...Both eyes poked out. Now the fact that he gets somewhere around 25K$ per day would afford him the opportunity to get what ever gear he wants. He wants that camera...It is HIS LOOK...HIS STYLE. That is why he is Terry Richardson.
03-13-2007, 01:57 PM   #6
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A cordless drill only beats a manual screw driver when one already knows how to build how to build a bookshelf. Even then there are times when the screwdriver is the better tool.

I used to work in a local camera shop and I have a story about those people that think the camera makes the photographer.

I sold a Pentax ZX5 to a young couple for Christmas one year. A great camera! Six months later the guy comes in to buy a Nikon F100 so he can shoot weddings. It seems he was told his photos were pretty good so he decided to be a wedding photographer. "In order to shoot weddings you have to have a Nikon" he tells me, so he had come in for a new camera. I tried to tell him that the camera he had was quite adequate (it was the one that had taken these photos people were supposedly raving about, after all) and that his money would be better spent getting some of Pentax's "*" lenses. He insisted and I sold him the F100.

Here's where it gets funny. A few weeks later he comes back in wondering why his photos were so blurry. When we told him that it looked like camera shake he claimed that it was impossible because he always kept his shutter speed at 1/60th so that wouldn't happen. Turns out that he was shooting most of his shots at 200mm, hand held, moving fast. He ended up hanging out for nearly an hour getting a photography 101 lesson from the manager, who was a lot more patient than I.

This shooter had a good eye and some of his shots were quite nice, but without knowing how to use his equipment (or any equipment) he was unable to produce consistent results and didn't even know how to analyze his errors.
03-13-2007, 04:01 PM   #7
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Sounds Familiar

QuoteOriginally posted by davemdsn Quote
A cordless drill only beats a manual screw driver when one already knows how to build how to build a bookshelf. Even then there are times when the screwdriver is the better tool.

I used to work in a local camera shop and I have a story about those people that think the camera makes the photographer.

I sold a Pentax ZX5 to a young couple for Christmas one year. A great camera! Six months later the guy comes in to buy a Nikon F100 so he can shoot weddings. It seems he was told his photos were pretty good so he decided to be a wedding photographer. "In order to shoot weddings you have to have a Nikon" he tells me, so he had come in for a new camera. I tried to tell him that the camera he had was quite adequate (it was the one that had taken these photos people were supposedly raving about, after all) and that his money would be better spent getting some of Pentax's "*" lenses. He insisted and I sold him the F100.

Here's where it gets funny. A few weeks later he comes back in wondering why his photos were so blurry. When we told him that it looked like camera shake he claimed that it was impossible because he always kept his shutter speed at 1/60th so that wouldn't happen. Turns out that he was shooting most of his shots at 200mm, hand held, moving fast. He ended up hanging out for nearly an hour getting a photography 101 lesson from the manager, who was a lot more patient than I.

This shooter had a good eye and some of his shots were quite nice, but without knowing how to use his equipment (or any equipment) he was unable to produce consistent results and didn't even know how to analyze his errors.
"This shooter had a good eye and some of his shots were quite nice, but without knowing how to use his equipment (or any equipment) he was unable to produce consistent results and didn't even know how to analyze his errors."

That's me when I started...
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03-13-2007, 04:55 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
"This shooter had a good eye and some of his shots were quite nice, but without knowing how to use his equipment (or any equipment) he was unable to produce consistent results and didn't even know how to analyze his errors."

That's me when I started...
__________________
I guess in a lot of ways that is still me. I am always learning something new about photography, proving to me over and over that I still have a lot to learn. I guess I shouldn't pick on people for tripping over themselves from time to time.

03-13-2007, 07:56 PM   #9
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Ted, Ben and Dave,

You all have hit the proverbial nails on the head with your comments here. I have seen Canikon envy a thousand times in my career. Though early in my career it was Nikcanon

In the late 70's I was assigned to cover the New York Cosmos soccer team, with all the greats that played on it, Pele, Beckenbauer, Chinaglia, and Carlos Alberto to name just a few. I was pretty much just a newbie, that had finished graduate school and decided to go back and study a professional career in scientific photography. Somehow, through perseverance I landed this gig for Soccer USA, a national sports magazine in circulation at the time and covered the team for two years.

On the sidelines, I worked among the seasoned pros and felt a little sheepish with my, then state of the art Pentax K2DMD's, and some longer fixed focal length lenses that Pentax had out at that time. But the camera never let me down because it was a good camera and it was understanding the sport that made the captures effective. I have never felt that 5-10+ frame a second made a photographer a better photographer. In reality, with rare exceptions, they often (at 5 frames per sec anyway) often miss exactly what they were trying to capture....hoping that the camera would capture what their individual skills could not.

Now, on other themes, people with money for great gear (not pros) generally fail to take decent photography because of several important reasons: 1) They have no understanding whatsoever of the basic principles of photographic physics required to do acceptable work. 2) They lack the facility to be self critical. 3) They do not understand light....period! 4) They do not understand the camera is only a tool or extension of the mind. 5) And fail to understand that even professional photographers tend to occupy a niche and are generally not masters of all venues in imaging.

In the decades of lecturing in photography I have tried to get people to understand the need for understanding their equipment and themselves and educate themselves by studying diverse photographers. But I often think it falls on deaf ears. I often see the guys with the best gear (money being no object) often producing some of the poorest images. This is just a somewhat humorous dichotomy of life.

So, sorry for the long winded, going nowhere diatribe. Just thought that I'd plug Pentax saying I got what I could afford when I started out in photogrpahy. I can afford what I want now and I still stick with Pentax. But, now that I have gotten back into personal photography after a long layoff...I sure wish I could find those big, long, rare FA lenses . I think the best is still to come with Pentax.

Thanks for listening.

Stephen

Last edited by SCGushue; 03-13-2007 at 08:04 PM.
03-13-2007, 09:19 PM   #10
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Let me add a little personal anecdote.
On one occasion, dissatisfied with the flare being created, I put aside the Hasselblad and continued with a project using a Mamiya C330 which, by virtue of its bellows construction, tended to control lens flare somewhat better.
Some of the resulting images were submitted to a world renowned stock agency for their consideration.
A few of those with lens flare degradation were accepted but non of the others, far crisper but otherwise of equal quality, were deemed suitable.
A little peeved, I requested some sort of explaination.
I was informed that whilst the accepted images were obviously made with a high end camera, others were clearly made with a camera of lesser quality.
My 'dander' was well and truly up.
So, being the perverse sod that I am, I created duplicates of the Mamiya made tranny's using the 'blad and a copying device.
Here I should inform those not familiar with the machine, that the 'blad, and only the 'blad, put an identifiable little optical indent onto the edge of each frame made with it.
I now had a series of images, slightly degraded in the copying process, bearing the distinctive 'blad marker.
They were universally accepted when submitted to the same agency, which also congratulated me on taking their advice regarding the cameras that I was using !!!
I later learned that they had been assessed by the same evaluation team as had rejected the originals.
Snobbery reigns supreme. Always has done and always will.
03-14-2007, 01:47 AM   #11
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Long Winded...NO!

QuoteOriginally posted by scg Quote
Ted, Ben and Dave,

You all have hit the proverbial nails on the head with your comments here. I have seen Canikon envy a thousand times in my career. Though early in my career it was Nikcanon

In the late 70's I was assigned to cover the New York Cosmos soccer team, with all the greats that played on it, Pele, Beckenbauer, Chinaglia, and Carlos Alberto to name just a few. I was pretty much just a newbie, that had finished graduate school and decided to go back and study a professional career in scientific photography. Somehow, through perseverance I landed this gig for Soccer USA, a national sports magazine in circulation at the time and covered the team for two years.

On the sidelines, I worked among the seasoned pros and felt a little sheepish with my, then state of the art Pentax K2DMD's, and some longer fixed focal length lenses that Pentax had out at that time. But the camera never let me down because it was a good camera and it was understanding the sport that made the captures effective. I have never felt that 5-10+ frame a second made a photographer a better photographer. In reality, with rare exceptions, they often (at 5 frames per sec anyway) often miss exactly what they were trying to capture....hoping that the camera would capture what their individual skills could not.

Now, on other themes, people with money for great gear (not pros) generally fail to take decent photography because of several important reasons: 1) They have no understanding whatsoever of the basic principles of photographic physics required to do acceptable work. 2) They lack the facility to be self critical. 3) They do not understand light....period! 4) They do not understand the camera is only a tool or extension of the mind. 5) And fail to understand that even professional photographers tend to occupy a niche and are generally not masters of all venues in imaging.

In the decades of lecturing in photography I have tried to get people to understand the need for understanding their equipment and themselves and educate themselves by studying diverse photographers. But I often think it falls on deaf ears. I often see the guys with the best gear (money being no object) often producing some of the poorest images. This is just a somewhat humorous dichotomy of life.

So, sorry for the long winded, going nowhere diatribe. Just thought that I'd plug Pentax saying I got what I could afford when I started out in photogrpahy. I can afford what I want now and I still stick with Pentax. But, now that I have gotten back into personal photography after a long layoff...I sure wish I could find those big, long, rare FA lenses . I think the best is still to come with Pentax.

Thanks for listening.

Stephen
Stephen;

That was beautifully written and so wise. I felt I had to tell you that, so you would know it was appreciated.

Thanks for your profound wisdom.

Best Wishes
Ben

Last edited by benjikan; 03-14-2007 at 02:13 AM.
03-14-2007, 02:09 AM   #12
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One More

QuoteOriginally posted by Rolly Quote
Let me add a little personal anecdote.
On one occasion, dissatisfied with the flare being created, I put aside the Hasselblad and continued with a project using a Mamiya C330 which, by virtue of its bellows construction, tended to control lens flare somewhat better.
Some of the resulting images were submitted to a world renowned stock agency for their consideration.
A few of those with lens flare degradation were accepted but non of the others, far crisper but otherwise of equal quality, were deemed suitable.
A little peeved, I requested some sort of explaination.
I was informed that whilst the accepted images were obviously made with a high end camera, others were clearly made with a camera of lesser quality.
My 'dander' was well and truly up.
So, being the perverse sod that I am, I created duplicates of the Mamiya made tranny's using the 'blad and a copying device.
Here I should inform those not familiar with the machine, that the 'blad, and only the 'blad, put an identifiable little optical indent onto the edge of each frame made with it.
I now had a series of images, slightly degraded in the copying process, bearing the distinctive 'blad marker.
They were universally accepted when submitted to the same agency, which also congratulated me on taking their advice regarding the cameras that I was using !!!
I later learned that they had been assessed by the same evaluation team as had rejected the originals.
Snobbery reigns supreme. Always has done and always will.
I may have already shared this with you all...But it is a good one I think.

When I was living in Paris and after spending about a year in Milan where I starved and had gained notoriety via my Paris experience I was asked to do a major advertorial campaign for Vogue Italy. So they flew me in from Paris for about a three or four day stint. What they didn't know was what I wanted was a very soft and not very sharp grainy image with "SH--TY" resolution.

So all the pre-prod stuff was being prepared like the model casting, hair and make-up artist meetings with the fashion stylist, which studio etc. When asked what kind of film I would use, I said I would rather purchase it on my own and I would bill them later. They were OK with that. I didn't want to tell them what I was planning on in fear of an outright "No Way!"

On the day of the first shoot, I walked in to the studio with my assistant who knew what the plan was and was introduced to the in house studio assistant. While doing all of the morning greeting formalities the stylist noticed that my assistant and myself were carrying two large plastic shopping bags filled with tons of green cardboard boxes. She asked.."What's That?" And I said "Ah....Hmm...Ah..The Camera's!' She said "What..What Camera's?" "The Camera's..Yeah disposable camera's..Is there a problem?" She freaked...I had to calm her down with tons of technical babble talk and she finally relented. These were Fuji Panoramic throw aways with a fixed focal f11.0 plastic lens and on board flash. Now being that I was shooting flash and testing them earlier and working, I taped a "Slave Sensor" to the flash and knowing the lens was approximately f11.0 (yeah approximately) and shooting in negative which I never did prior to this shoot (always slide film) which gave me more latitude, I could use a pro lighting set up with this piece of fabulously complex technology. My assistant gave me f11.0 at 100iso and off we went. The pictures looked real old and "Shi--Y" the client was happy and everyone lived happily ever after..

Love those Fuji Green Boxes..and thinking of Green, here are some Aliens working on genetic manipulation of a Human...

Last edited by benjikan; 04-06-2007 at 02:05 AM.
03-14-2007, 05:10 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by roentarre Quote
I have a friend buying out a 5D + 1D markII + Canon 600mm f4L IS being a first time DSLR user. He often photographed his dog running on the beach and that was all he did with his big gun Canon 600/4 which costs like a cheaper Japanese small car. The shots of his dog was always blurry and, as usual, he blames on the camera bodies and the lens.

Funnily he also owns canon 85/1.2L which I recommended him to use on protraits. He criticised the lens being too unsharp and a kit lens would do a better job...

I guess photography is more about how to use the gear rather than to own the best gear
Sounds like i guy i know whom went out and bought himself a 5D 24-70 f2.8 L and 70-200 f2.8 L, to replace his little point and shoot, 3 months latter he sold his canon gear and bought a Nikon D2x plus 40-70 f2.8 and 70-200 f2.8s, a further 3 months after that he was mainly shooting with his crappy P&S going on about how no body needs a DSLR as he could get as good shots from his snappy crappy. All his shots were rubbish, he had no skill or eye for the art.
03-14-2007, 05:15 AM   #14
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I think gear heads are great!

QuoteOriginally posted by scg Quote
Ted, Ben and Dave,

In the decades of lecturing in photography I have tried to get people to understand the need for understanding their equipment and themselves and educate themselves by studying diverse photographers. But I often think it falls on deaf ears. I often see the guys with the best gear (money being no object) often producing some of the poorest images. This is just a somewhat humorous dichotomy of life.

Stephen
I love these guys - their ludicrous spending frenzies keep the camera business afloat! Thanks to them I can pick up an amazing 10MP weather sealed Pentax SLR for a measly £500.

Keep it up guys - I mean how else are you going to get a reliable picture of your pet pooch without super-fast AF, 11 frames per second and a 600mm lens? PLEASE BUY MORE!!!
03-14-2007, 05:31 AM   #15
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Thanks for the replies , Gentlemen.
As a shooter from the 50's what did we do when we had no motor drives. We thought about what we were doing. We anticipated the shot, knew our shutter lag time and shot. You don't need 10 frames a sec. Even 5 is too many. In any action there is one and only one critical moment. Thats what separates the pro's from the amateurs.
Last winter I was asked by a customer to get a shot of her family coming down a snowtubing chute. There were 10 people in this chain. It was at night and the only light was from one overhead plus an old flash attached to my istDL. I shot it with an SMC 2.0 manual lens . I knew what my Depth of field was and the flash capabilities. I got all ten people in the shot in focus. One shot. Not 5 or 10. Shot in maual mode. Of all the Cameras I own The Pentax line is my favorite. It will always be.
TedP
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