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12-04-2009, 01:06 AM   #1
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K3 focusingscreen vs katzeye

I just picked-up a K3 Focusing Screen from focusingscreen.com to compare to our Katzeye.

My main inquiry revolved around the claims that the K3 either resisted black out and that it was brighter than the average screen. So I put them to the test.

Having received the screen this morning, I decided to install it right away in our vehicle while the wife was shopping for groceries. I know there are alot of people out there who get stressed out at the thought of installing a screens in their camera's, however, it's not hard at all, and once you done it a few times, it actually becomes very easy. The only thing I would add is that you need to be very careful with the screens when handling them. Otherwise... piece of cake!

So right off the bat, I'll say that the K3 screen was dimmer than the katzeye w/optibright. And though I'd say "about 3/4's of a stop", I also noticed that it has an affect on tone as well. That is to say... the Katzeye on our K20D in typical daylight, is very very close to reality in terms of lighting and color. However the K3 ends-up being dimmer with a warm cast to it(ala. tobacco stain style).

Having said that... I find the K3 screen to be top notch in terms of definition and design. The prism is very good and the etching and subtleties of the screen are very low key under fire.

However, when the lighting goes down... the K3 looses ground to the Katzeye as the light loss compounds visibility. Whereas the Katzeye holds its own and maintains a natural tone throughout the lighting spectrum.

All in all, I wouldn't discount the K3 as a loss in the lineup. Though I have to say, that the optibright treatment does make a prominent difference amidst the competition when all is said and done. Now whether or not you feel it warrants the extra 100 dollars is the million dollar question.

PS. if ever other screen makers uncover the optibright secret, it could very well spell the end of the Katzeye era.


Last edited by JohnBee; 12-04-2009 at 01:15 AM.
12-04-2009, 01:14 AM   #2
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I also wanted to add(completely forgot) that the K3 has excellent blackout resistance! - possibly better than the Katzeye(need more testing to draw a conclusion) !
And that both the K3 and Katzeye affect metering in the same way(spot metering). Though center weighted average takes take of all that quite nicely.
12-04-2009, 08:16 AM   #3
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Very interesting!! Just contemplating to buy one. Which one would you recommend for

Tamron 18-250 f3.5-6.3 (and a 50 1.7, m 28 2.8) on k-m?

Is Katzeye worth the money? How is your experience with AF lenses in matrix metering? How is it with spot (or center wighted) metering - is the effect of the screen consistent for fixed aperture (and possible to counteract by the constant exposure compensation)?
Thanks
Vit
12-04-2009, 10:04 AM   #4
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I got one of the cheapies from China and it was crap in my opinion. I wasted my money on it. I'm curious of the quality control these might have vs the Katzeye. I'm considering the katzeye with optibrite and I've read enough reports that their customer service and warranty is very good. I'm very hesitant to try another foreign screen.

12-04-2009, 11:25 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by reeftool Quote
I got one of the cheapies from China and it was crap in my opinion.
I went through 3 of them (*istDL, K10D, K20D) and they all were good... I did not use MF on anything slower than 2.8 though, however my own eyes were good enough to do that @ 4.5 too through $20-something screen cut from OEM Minolta X700... of course if you have to do this all the time @ f4 or f5.6 or worse then K3 cut by Katz (with or w/o optibrite) or cut by focusingscreen.com is the way to go...
12-04-2009, 02:50 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by reeftool Quote
I got one of the cheapies from China and it was crap in my opinion. I wasted my money on it. I'm curious of the quality control these might have vs the Katzeye. I'm considering the katzeye with optibrite and I've read enough reports that their customer service and warranty is very good. I'm very hesitant to try another foreign screen.
I'm with reeftool. I bought one on eBay, put it in my K20D, and after a couple of weeks swapped it back out with the original. It was way to dark. I'd rather take the chance on these old eyes and MF than to use that. Cost under $20, and I got what I paid for.......

Tim
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