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Forum: Pentax Medium Format 09-30-2016, 09:20 PM  
MF film: is there anything it can't do?
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 56
Views: 4,887
Actually Ansel Adams makes reference to Zone XI in one of his early additions of "The Negative". This zone is way beyond the shoulder of the film curve and such extreme exposure can cause reversal of the image. Both the early and latest addition of this book give an example image called "The Black Sun" or something similar. This early addition is the only one I have seen that references Zone XI

Cheers

MK
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 09-22-2016, 07:15 AM  
Post your medium format photos!
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 15,307
Views: 2,552,594
I encounter lighting issues, especially weddings where the white balance is accurate for an outdoor scene, but with the bride in her white dress in the shade of a tree, takes on a blue cast. I use Google Color Efex Pro and use the White Neutralizer to clean up the whites and other issues. Usually brushing in the changes

MK
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 09-01-2016, 06:59 PM  
First roll of MF film
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 22
Views: 2,617
As asahijock has mentioned a "good" negative is key. One of the most common problems people encounter when starting off developing film is over developing and over agitating and the combination of both is going to result high contrast and blocked negatives. The key to a good negative is a good black, with details in the important shadow areas and detail in highlight areas. Over development and excessive agitation will impact the highlights. For scanning, as I mentioned above, I find that dilute low contrast developers and two solution developers work best. A dilute developer will exhaust itself in the highlights while continuing to develop in the shadow areas.
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 07-24-2016, 11:44 AM  
First roll of MF film
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 22
Views: 2,617
I have attached an images taken with my Hasselblad 500 C/M. Ilford FP4+ developed in Divided D-23 for four minutes minutes in Bath's A and B. Scanned as 16 Bit RGB TIFF with my Epson 700. For digital printing converted to gray scale in Photoshop and printed with Quadtone RIP. Prints great with detail in both shadows and highlights. This was quite a high contrast scene between the deep shadows and the sun falling on the ivy leaves.


Cheers


Mike
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 07-18-2016, 10:02 PM  
First roll of MF film
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 22
Views: 2,617
Most consumer grade scanners can introduce a fair bit of contrast. I shoot and scan a fair amount of film from 120 through 8x10 and while I was getting good results I stumbled across an article by Sandy King in the View Camera magazine. He was advocating a divided developer regime to get low contrast, full range negatives for scanning.


One of the developers, based on D23 as the first bath and a 10% solution of Kodalk as the second bath. I experimented with a number of films, FP4+, Tri-X, Acros and TMAX 100 and got excellent results and full box speed. Developing times turned out to be 4 minutes in each bath (no presoak or rinse between the two baths). The negatives are low grain (due to short developing times) and very sharp and somewhat low contrast with no blocking in the shadows or highlights. The resulting scans were great. The other trick is to ensure the output levels of the scanning software are adjusted so there is no clipping at both ends of the range


I use an Epson 700 with the native scanning software and have never been happier.


While the negatives scan well, they also print well on conventional printing papers, around grade 3 or 3 1/2 with my VC enlarger head. So best of both worlds :)


Cheers


MK
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 07-12-2016, 01:02 PM  
645z which portable flash
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 2
Views: 808
I use two battery powered portable strobes, the Indra 500 and Adorama's Flashpoint RL-600B. I use primarily Pocket Wizard Plus III's to trigger both strobes and they work well. I also use the PW's to fire my Bowens and Profoto studio strobes. The benefit to me using the PW's is the built in receiver for my studio strobes and my light meter is PW enabled. So measuring in the field and studio is a breeze. I have to admit I really like the Flashpoint unit, portable, good price and the trigger that comes with the unit works just great with the 645z, and you can adjust the power levels remotely. Adorama frequently has deals on Flashpoint and I think there is one going on right now.


I am not all that interested in TTL flash units - but would love to be able to fire the strobes at shutter speeds greater than 1/125th and may take a look at the Acon trigger with the Pentax firmware upgrade, but $$'s and the fact I picked up a 135 LS for less than the Acon triggers is holding me back


:lol:
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 05-17-2016, 11:26 AM  
Pentax 645z and leaf shutter lenses - any success?
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 32
Views: 16,026
I have just acquired a 135mm LS from KEH. Tested in the studio and as soon as I attached to the 645z LS appeared on the LCD display. Initially tested with a sync cord to my Profoto and really pleased with the results. But realized why I now hate sync cords. Put a Pocket Wizard Plus III in the hot shoe and connected the cord to the sync socket on the lens and voila cordless operation at all shutter speeds on the lens. Also works great in non-LS mode (LS disappears in the LCD finder) and in manual mode can use all the camera shutter speeds.


The image quality of the lens is really good, sharp, good rendering of out of focus elements and no CA. Just like a poster above this lens will take over from my A150 and 120mm Macro Having to manually cock the shutter is no big deal and quickly becomes part of the workflow.
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 04-20-2016, 07:34 AM  
6X7 TTL Prism -is speed dial adapter ring needed?
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 12
Views: 3,984
I have three 6x7 bodies, two have the TTL finder, one has the shutter adaptor ring the other does not. They both work just fine, just a little more awkward to use. That said make sure you test the TTL prism as they do have a habit of failing.


MK
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 04-13-2016, 05:21 PM  
Hand holding the 645 portrait
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 6
Views: 1,064
I sympathize with you holding the 645z in portrait mode can be a bear. My solution was to use the handle from my LED panel and use it like a pistol grip. Holding the grip in my left hand and controlling the shutter with my right. Worked quite well and took 30+ business portraits last Friday using the 120mm Macro. What would be nice would be a pistol grip with a built in release so I could hold the grip in my right hand and steady the camera with the left.


Would be even better would be a faster sync speed :)
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 03-06-2016, 08:56 PM  
Annoying Feature with the 645z
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 13
Views: 1,604
There is another annoying bugaboo with this card feature, that causes duplicate files. Format both cards, Shoot with card 1, remove card 1 and download the images and if you have turned on the 645z before replacing card 1, card 2 becomes primary and repeats the file sequence numbers eck!


I remove the cards and use a high speed USB card reader, much faster than downloading from the camera - especially shooting an event/wedding with 300 + images.
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 03-04-2016, 09:55 AM  
Annoying Feature with the 645z
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 13
Views: 1,604
I would never remove the cards without powering down the camera. My problem is leaving a card in slot 2. If you power the camera back up with only a card in slot 2 then it becomes the primary card even when you (power down) put the card back in slot 1..

---------- Post added 03-04-16 at 11:00 AM ----------





I think the solution would be a couple of addition menu options for card handling

  1. Card 1 - Overflow to Card 2

  2. Card 2 - Overflow to Card 1

  3. Set Primary Card (Always Card1 or Card 2)

  4. Parallel Write to Both Cards

  5. Raw (Select Card) + JPEG (Select Card)

Fortunately I do not have any issue removing either card - must be my slim but stubby fingers

:lol:
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 03-04-2016, 08:06 AM  
Annoying Feature with the 645z
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 13
Views: 1,604
I have two memory cards installed and set up for overflow - with slot 1 being the primary and slot 2 being the overflow. After a session I remove the card from slot 1 and upload my images via card reader. If for any reason power up the camera with just the card in slot 2 it becomes the primary slot, even after putting the card back into slot 1. This annoying feature, well for me it's annoying, as I have been caught out a couple of times after a new session assuming the images are on card 1 only to find an empty card - thoughts of horror that my assignment had disappeared but they were on the second card . All my other dual card cameras (Nikon D4, D3 & D800) retain the hierarchy for the cards even if one is removed and then put back....


:o


Probably could be fixed with a firmware update? Anyone else bitten by this feature?


MK
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 02-22-2016, 08:57 PM  
Tripod head for 645Z
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 57
Views: 5,937
I use a wooden Berlebach Report 8023 tripod with a Graf Studio Ball head. I use this combination for the 645z and with the 28-45 is rock steady with no creep. I am not surprised as I use this tripod/head combination for both my 4x5 and 5x7 field cameras.
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 01-21-2016, 11:06 PM  
645z and High Speed Sync?
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 61
Views: 11,761
I have the Indra 500 and have been unsuccessful using the Odin Transmitter. With the transmitter in the hot shoe the shutter speed is pegged to 1.125th max.


The transmitter show in the Video is not an Odin, probably a Mitros trigger which may work. Hopefully you get a response from Phottix that identifies the trigger.


Cheers


Mike
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 01-15-2016, 07:20 AM  
645z and High Speed Sync?
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 61
Views: 11,761
The Rovelight 600 it is a manual flash unit no TTL, yet it's controller supports HSS in manual mode and is manufacturer agnostic. Works on any camera set in manual mode at any shutter speed up 1/4000. It works with all the cameras I have in my stable, Nikon and Canon - why because in manual mode the flash connector (hot shoe or sync) is open and just fires regardless of the shutter speed. Not so with the 645z it is smart enough to recognize there is something sitting in the hot shoe and automatically sets the shutter seed to 1/125th.


If Pentax would be kind enough to issue a firmware update to not do this we could enjoy HSS with high power units like the Rovelight which is way more powerful than any of the Pentax shoe mounted flash.
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 01-14-2016, 05:57 AM  
645z and High Speed Sync?
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 61
Views: 11,761
You are correct, alas it does not work for many controllers that support HSS. I have tried with a number of brands of controllers including Pocket Wizard and Odin along with the Indra 500 and Rovelight 600 which supports high speed flash without success including Manual Mode


The 645z recognizes the controller as a flash unit and automatically sets the speed to 1/125th regardless of the shutter speed set in manual mode. The only solution I am aware of is Priolite which is too expensive for me.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 12-05-2015, 08:26 PM  
Crashes with Digital Camera Utility 5.4.2
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 17
Views: 3,884
I have similar problem running Windows 7. The application opens, but crashes as soon as I select an image. Tried removing and reinstalling a number of times but no luck :(


Went back and installed the version on the CD that came with my 645Z - which is 5.1.0 - certainly dated but at least it works without crashing.
.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 12-03-2015, 09:03 AM  
PENTAX Digital Camera Utility 5.4.2 Update
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 40
Views: 7,764
Well I installed the update - ugh! Crashes every time I try to open a PEF file from the 645Z. Annoying to say the least. Will uninstall and wait


O/S - Windows 7 Pro


MK
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 11-27-2015, 07:57 AM  
DxO Labs to add PENTAX 645 Digital System to it's scope
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 55
Views: 8,248
DXO is still working on support for the 645Z and lenses and have recently issued an update to DXO ViewPoint2 - latest version is 2.5.10. Unfortunately there is a bug in this and the previous version where some 645Z lenses are not recognized, in my case the Pentax-D FA 645 55mm f/2.8 AL and the DA645 28-45mm f/4.5 ED.


DXO support are aware and working to resolve - hopefully soon
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 11-23-2015, 08:29 AM  
645Z Computer System Poll
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 16
Views: 2,028
Had to put together a new system as my old one died of a Motherboard failure


Intel i7-4790 @3.6 Ghz
32 GB system memory
3-Drive system C: OS + Apps, E: Image Ingest F: Dedicated Scratch Drive all @7200 RPM
NVIDEA GTX950 2GB Video Memory
Photoshop CS6 + ACR 9.1.1
Dual Monitors - 27" Acer XG270HU; 2560x1440 resolution
Windows 7 Professional Service Pack 1


Pleased with the performance, Bridge CS6 + ACR opens the 645z files in a flash, there is a slight delay going from ACR to Photoshop. But once in Photoshop performance is really snappy including add-in tools like DXO Viewpoint 2.


Ingesting a large number of files 200+ via Bridge is not too bad, but do see a delay with Bridge building the previews but I have Bridge preferences set to generate Monitor Size Previews to ensure Bridge displays sharp images (another story)
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 11-22-2015, 01:27 PM  
Enabling live view magnification ont he 645Z
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 6
Views: 2,308
Thanks for the Help - my new manual had a glitch in the printing and the OK button was not really visible - but checked with the online version of the Manual and now can see the OK button as it should be printed


again Thanks for the help


MK
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 11-20-2015, 04:21 PM  
Enabling live view magnification ont he 645Z
Posted By MikeKPhoto
Replies: 6
Views: 2,308
Brand new 645z user and really loving the results :)


But I seem either be misreading the manual with regard to zooming while in Live View. Just cannot get it to work - manual shows while in live view to rotate the rear wheel - all that does is change the aperture. Read and re read the manual and I am stuck - anyone help me with this
:)


Mike
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