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Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 03-02-2012, 09:38 PM  
Cosina Voigtlander 17.5/f0.95 (MFT)
Posted By m88k
Replies: 33
Views: 7,284
To begin with, I agree with er1kksen; the trend towards increasing options is good for everyone. In the future, shallow depth of field zealots may have the option to shoot something like an 85 1.2 on a medium format mirrorless. Or, if they figure out a way to increase sensor size, perhaps a 200mm f2...

For the full-frame fans, assume for a moment you're not after the paper-thin dof look that's become so popular today. The 17.5mm places your camera the same distance from your subject with a MFT as a 35mm would with FF. You've got two more stops of light to work with using the MFT camera. Yeah, the FF may offer greater sensitivity to compensate, but, last I checked, no FF camera could offer better sensitivity in video than the hacked GH2...

Also, APS-C seems to have taken the lead on overall best low-light capabilities; traditional 35mm "full frame" is just on the wrong side of the conventional chip manufacturing limits, keeping such chips a generation behind their smaller brethren. Looking further into the future, it seems silly to stick with traditional FF as they develop better ways of making large chips. I say further into the future because, eventually, it seems you ought to considering breaking with a format that's popular due to tradition. It's much easier to justify the need for a size jump between APS-C and the modern digital 645 sensors than to 35mm full frame. Assuming (huge leap, I admit) you could manufacture a mirrorless, live view capable medium format camera in the same ball-park price range as a full-frame, why wouldn't you? Especially as Pentax! Legacy glass is wonderful, but mirrorless really calls for replacing the old retrofocal lens lineups. I'd argue the biggest weakness of the MFT format may be that it's registration distance (20mm) is too deep for the sensor diagonal. Much like the FF slrs that came before it, it forces anything approaching a wide angle to be of retrofocal design.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 02-07-2011, 10:59 AM  
Is Pentax FF camera close to us?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 36
Views: 12,978
You all just seriously lack imagination! Pentax will be launching a mirrorless full-frame camera later this year, shortly followed by slashing prices on the 645D to compete with the 5Dmk2! ;) ;)

In all seriousness, I couldn't care less if Pentax ignores FF; it seems the benefits are waning along with the sensor cost, and we're still missing lenses. Personally, I'm looking for two things: a telephoto prime >300mm, and cheaper, dedicated P-TTL slaves like the Nikon R200.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 02-01-2011, 05:22 PM  
Fisheyes and 16mm?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 34
Views: 7,153
Also, kitty said nothing about moving the eyes; I can probably see at least 150 degrees side to side if I'm allowed to dart my eyes around...
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-11-2011, 07:39 PM  
Buying the DA* 50-135 SDM with k100d
Posted By m88k
Replies: 4
Views: 1,734
I'm quite interested in buying the DA* 50-135 SDM. However, I am concerned about the SDM failures.

Mostly I'm worried it'll fail within warranty, without me knowing, because my K100d doesn't have SDM. That, or the SDM function will fail rapidly when I do get a SDM compatible body.

Just thought I'd see if anyone had thoughts or suggestions on this; the lenses I really want are all bloody SDM, but I can't justify upgrading bodies as of yet...
Forum: Monthly Photo Contests 10-27-2010, 06:46 PM  
Rising
Posted By m88k
Replies: 0
Views: 2,520
Attachment 74516

The shutter speed and aperture used aren't available in the drop down menus. (1/1250 at 7.1)
Forum: Post Your Photos! 10-27-2010, 05:00 PM  
Nature Coyote
Posted By m88k
Replies: 20
Views: 4,300
Your Bigma is also a lot sharper than my Kalimar 500mm f8 and my Celestron C90 1000mm f11 mirrors. :-P

I love the mirrors, but I'm really starting to understand how people develop LBA. The Bigma seems like the number one fix, giving quite good performance across a massive range.
Forum: Post Your Photos! 10-27-2010, 10:52 AM  
Nature Coyote
Posted By m88k
Replies: 20
Views: 4,300
I didn't mean as roadkill. A couple years back with a nasty winter they were trotting around local neighborhoods. Decently far away from the nearest area you might call wilderness.

Wolves stay as far from us as they can get; coyotes are much more likely to come into human areas scavenging for food. More unusual is that he isn't equipped with any ACME branded weapons.

I'm planning a trip to Isle Royale in the spring spring in hopes of catching a shot or two of a wolf, but I'll count myself lucky if I catch a hint of one even in the distance. I've been reading up on these things and wolves have what naturalists call a minimum flight distance of over 1/4 mile. (Basically how close they'll come to humans before becoming evasive)
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-27-2010, 10:36 AM  
Lens issues | DA 70mm/2.4
Posted By m88k
Replies: 11
Views: 2,168
I don't know about you, but for me the short telephoto is about way more than portraits. I recently got myself one of the Samyang 85mm rebrands, and I've found it matches how I see the world 85% of the time.

In the past few months I've chosen to upgrade my kit a bit, and so far I've put down 350 in lenses, 330 in support upgrades, and about 100 in quick release upgrades. Add in a few bits here and there and I'm sure I've hit a round 800, considerably more than I meant to. I think that's what happens to photographers; our money magically becomes glass and photographic paraphernalia. On the plus side, the new tripod setup I just ordered is being covered completely with credit card bonus points.

I do have to say I'm a bit perplexed by this concept of "autofocus" as you call it. What purpose does it serve? Is it nice? Does it make for a benevolent god?

My k100d has an AF (actuate on focus) switch, but that controls the focus not the shutter. :-P
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-26-2010, 09:52 PM  
Lens issues | DA 70mm/2.4
Posted By m88k
Replies: 11
Views: 2,168
I seriously doubt it's anything you're doing wrong. Oil suggests the lens has been mistreated to some degree, so it'd be my main suspect, but there's always a chance your body fell just outside the tolerance range they were supposed to be built in. It happens with all of the manufacturers. Best information I've seen was from one of the camera/lens rental outfits that went nuts testing the models they had on hand. Found some relatively large deviations for what we all consider precision camera gear.

One of the advantages to the Pentax bodies beyond the k100d is the ability to store the focus compensation for a number of lenses, but that won't do you much good if the body is outside the range.

There's also the chance that the body is within spec, but barely, and the lens is on the far opposite side of the specification. If in doubt, I'd return it, but I'd want to test the body against a couple other lenses relatively soon to see if it has an issue requiring repair/replacement.

I'm very envious of your new camera; the K-7 is the first camera I really wish I had instead of my k100d.
Forum: Post Your Photos! 10-26-2010, 08:44 PM  
Nature Coyote
Posted By m88k
Replies: 20
Views: 4,300
Wow, that's the first time I've seen a coyote not on a city street. :-P

Coyotes are the only alpha predator that has grown in number with the addition of human settlements to their habitats.

Oh, and those are great shots; what focal length were you at?
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-26-2010, 08:34 PM  
Lens issues | DA 70mm/2.4
Posted By m88k
Replies: 11
Views: 2,168
My understanding is the oil on the blades usually results from heat exposure; age doesn't matter, its just that one day the previous owner left it in the glove box.

What body is this on? Is the body a used model too? Without other lenses, it's hard to say if it's the lens or body with the focus issue. I don't have the focus compensation option, is ten the limit?

I've only bought from them twice, but I'm be surprised to hear that KEH sold an EX+ with oil on the aperture. That said, everything I've heard is their return policy is fantastic, so you should be ok if you need to send it back.

On the plus side, if you do send it back, the DA 40 has recently become available for considerably less than usual, maybe Pentax is starting to lower lens prices? Fingers crossed!
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 10-26-2010, 08:26 AM  
Game Single in November - any interest?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 259
Views: 26,513
Ha. I spent Friday trying to get those fowl things to stay in front of my newly acquired C90. 1000mm f11 is a pain to aim and steady in a hurry, especially with a tripod not meant to hold anything close to it's size.

I take it back; they were geese. And some sort of crane that I failed to get a shot of at all.
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 10-26-2010, 08:20 AM  
Game Single in November - any interest?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 259
Views: 26,513
Sounds like a fun game. Now the question is, do I use my lovely new Samyang 85, or do I show you all just how crazy I am with a 500mm mirror? The 500 offers the nice combination of being subtle to the outside world and photographically ridiculous.

Also, I present an open dare to use a 500+ refractive lens. Those with back porches featuring scenic mountain views need not apply. :-P
Forum: Post Your Photos! 10-20-2010, 02:23 PM  
Nature Grin and Bear It
Posted By m88k
Replies: 7
Views: 1,761
Actually, I rarely go about commenting on photos; you just happened to be on the list of unanswered posts when I decided to start becoming more active in the forums.

That said, I applaud the daring required to get within standard portrait range of a black bear. I'm curious how the shot looks before post; I'm just starting to try my hand at seriously re-tuning my photos in post.
Forum: General Talk 10-20-2010, 01:02 AM  
Why are camera sensors still rectangular?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 15
Views: 8,369
Jord, the Mamiya system actually gave me the idea. However, I'd imagine as long as you're still in the APS-C sensor price range, a square sensor is likely cheaper than a rotatable one.

I just found proof, I'm not the first guy to think this is a good idea. DPreview's pentax forums had some lunatic suggest this square format would be Pentax's big release at PMA 2009. Several of the responders also liked the idea of a square format.

As far as removing accessory profits, the grip is the only accessory Pentax makes that would be effected. And I'd be willing to bet they could still sell a battery grip to a lot of the regular grip buyers, seeing as the camera wouldn't feel right to them without it. However, if such a format was offered and took off, it'd be the third party accessories that'd take the real hit. No more need for rotating flash brackets, L-Brackets, nodal systems that put the camera on it's side, camera rotators, and whatever other portrait format accessories I'm missing. These third party accessories consume photographic gear budgets that might otherwise be pointed at more first party toys, like bodies, flashes, and lenses. Added bonus to Pentax; they can sell new square flashes, without third party manufacturers to compete with.

Manufacturing costs; I can't speak for Pentax, but Canon, in their 2009 whitepaper on full frame sensors, claims that all costs are trivial compared to the sensor. According to the paper, the increase in mechanical component sizes does little to change pricing between Canon's APS-C (smaller than their Pentax cousins) cameras and they're FF models. Even more interestingly, the R&D costs are identical. To quote; "Research, development, manufacturing and distribution costs are all independent of camera size, so a smaller camera will not cost appreciably less than a larger one for any of these reasons."

The cost ought to be similar to APS-H sensors, seeing as the size is the same. The sensor doesn't have any truly special specifications other than the somewhat unique shape, so there shouldn't be any R&D, just a custom redesign. The real issue is probably that the manufacturers are afraid we won't embrace the format and they'll get stuck with a load of cameras they can't sell at a profit. However, a square sensor, pentaprism camera built to compliment the k7/k5 would definitely be the camera that convinced me to make my k100d a bag-dweller. A nice, round 16MP would be plenty for my tastes, all I need is a manufacture daring enough to make it. (Hopefully Pentax, unless some third party wants to start making K-mount dSLRs :-D)
Forum: General Talk 10-15-2010, 07:00 PM  
Why are camera sensors still rectangular?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 15
Views: 8,369
Theoretically speaking though, the 24mm square ought to avoid the exorbitant increase in costs when producing larger sensors.

The rest of this post kinda goes off topic, just giving fair warning here.

Realistically speaking, I question how much of the price of our cameras is in the sensor, especially considering the price difference between top end p&s models and bottom end dslrs. Or how about the fact EVILs are all more expensive still than the bottom model SLR kits? The camera market is at best an oligopoly, and outside mass market cameras, is relatively uncompetitive price wise.

Quick example I believe demonstrates that the camera manufacturers get us to pay for more innovations/ R&D than we receive; Olympus 4/3 format 300mm f 2.8 vs the Canon 300mm f2.8 IS. Despite the FAR smaller image circle the Olympus cameras require, the Olympus lens weighs in at an extra 740g over the Canon according to manufacturer specs.
Forum: General Talk 10-15-2010, 01:12 PM  
Why are camera sensors still rectangular?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 15
Views: 8,369
Again, part of the point is getting missed. The idea is a BIGGER square sensor would maximize use of aps-c lenses and add functionality for 35mm lenses, while, in theory, not significantly changing the body cost, particularly when you remove the accessories it would eliminate.

I know my second post was massive, but the biggest point was a 24mm square sensor would be offer the same area as an APS-H sensor, which is allegedly the biggest you can go while maintaining the cost structure of APS-C production.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-15-2010, 12:52 PM  
Quick question
Posted By m88k
Replies: 8
Views: 2,106
As wheatfield said, no. However, the MX should meter properly with pre-A K mount lenses, which the digital bodies can only handle via stop-down.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 10-15-2010, 12:49 PM  
Pentax k7 - can't shoot when cabled to computer
Posted By m88k
Replies: 2
Views: 2,666
Digital Camera Utility doesn't support the K-7; for whatever reason Pentax has discontinued tethering capability (controlling the camera from the PC), as wheatfield said.

If you want to transfer files with the computer hooked to the PC, I believe you need to turn the camera on after connecting it to the computer. At least that's the rule with my k100d.

If you're just looking for the big screen to evaluate shots, you can tether to an HD tv or monitor with an HDMI cable. Note that HDMI cables vary widely in price, shop around if you're looking to get a long one.

Eye-fi cards are another way to potentially create a sudo-tether depending on your purposes.
Forum: General Talk 10-15-2010, 12:19 PM  
Why are camera sensors still rectangular?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 15
Views: 8,369
Fascinating picture Jogiba, I find it interesting that they pack in several sizes of sensor on a plate, but the layout doesn't seem to be focused on optimized yield. Maybe it makes more sense to be able to cut straight lines rather than packing them in and requiring jigsaw cutting patterns. It also seems wasteful to etch those outer sensors running off the edge of the wafer...

Wheatfield, I think you missed the point of the post. I'm not looking for circular or interesting polygon based photos. I'm suggesting a sensor that would allow the camera to grab both portrait and landscape photos while held in the standard position. Specifically, a 24mm square sensor, which would get the most out of aps-c lenses and gain some benefits from full frame lenses, which are still quite common among pentax users.
Forum: Post Your Photos! 10-15-2010, 11:49 AM  
Nature Grin and Bear It
Posted By m88k
Replies: 7
Views: 1,761
Nice shot, scarily close for a black bear. Is that at 200mm or something shorter? Any post processing? Maybe I'm crazy, but that bokeh looks funny...
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 10-15-2010, 10:59 AM  
How to start DCU from another program
Posted By m88k
Replies: 7
Views: 3,108
I'd love to try to help, but I've got no clue what DCU is...
Forum: General Talk 10-15-2010, 10:42 AM  
Why are camera sensors still rectangular?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 15
Views: 8,369
Parallax, I don't quite see the issue you're putting forth. Are you just saying the FF purists will whine that it's not traditional? The square sensor I move to below would, I imagine, make the FF enthusiasts happier than they are with aps-c; you're gaining sensor size, and at least SOME advantage to carrying 35mm lenses.

Rawhead, you replied while I was typing this up, and discussing going square. You're right, it would require a bigger focusing screen, mirror, and prism. You'd also likely need to increase the size of the shutter. However, you're incorrect on the requirement of changing the registration distance. A square based off the aps-c width would have a height of approximately 24mm (less in practice) This actually puts it at the same height as the 35mm film bodies, but with the same 2/3s of the width that aps-c cameras already produce. Pentax, along with Nikon, Canon, and Sony/Minolta, has kept the same registration distance from the 35mm days, so Olympus and Sigma are the only two I can imagine not being capable of this. Though is it Canon where the aps-c lenses break FF mirrors? Anyway, for the purpose of this forum (pentax), registration distance is a non-issue.

Body size will increase, but probably not enough to offset the bulk removed in accessories. While you're at it, drop the onboard flash to compensate a bit; most buyers will probably barely miss it.



Well, I was thinking about this instead of chiral and achiral molecules during class, and tried to do some quick calculations for the number of shapes that would fit on a 200mm wafer. (Standard for CMOS imager production according to DALSA) Unfortunately, rectangle packing is a hell of a lot more complicated than I initially thought (or didn't think).

Anyway, If your goal is to produce a sensor capable of both the 3:2 and 2:3 formats, the simplest shape would be a 1:1 square sensor with side length of the longer side of the base imager, approximately 24mm in this case. A square with side length equal to the long side of a 3:2 rectangle is going to have 50% more area than the rectangle.
For simplicities sake, we'll go ahead and assume that area=cost. Technically speaking, with increasing area, cost increases in jumps; according to the great wiki, aps-h is about as big as you can go without making a huge jump in cost, with 28.7x19mm dimensions, totaling 548mm^2 area it's only slightly smaller than the 23.6mm square based off of aps-c, which would have a total area of 556.96mm^2. So I would imagine that this sensor could be produced without making the leap to the multi-mask methods that make FF sensors so extraordinarily expensive.

Unfortunately, I've got no clue what the cost breakdown of a modern dslr is, so I can't really continue with a good estimate of the added cost. However, the rise of the bottom end dslr market, where users seem more apt to replace bodies than collect lenses, would suggest that the manufacturers are no longer pulling most of their profit from lenses as was rumored in the past. In other words; dslrs are cheaper to produce than we think, and the cost has little bearing on what we pay for them.
I'd call this camera a win if it could be made for less than 400 USD more than the K-5, seeing as it eliminates the vertical grip and L-plate, the two of which come to a similar sum. Admittedly, I've never used a vertical grip or an L-plate, but I'd imagine the plate interferes with using the grip comfortably, whereas you'd never need to remove the plate from the proposed body.

Ok, so our square sensor will produce some major vignetting on in the corners with dedicated aps-c lenses. However, you'll still get at least 3:2 formats perfectly, and it'd be an excuse to start selling higher priced FF lenses again. Pentax may not view this as an advantage, seeing as they're currently selling aps-c lenses at FF prices. But with lenses with a big enough image circle, you'd have the option of a square output with oh so many more crop options. It'd also make it possible to get 8x10's of subjects that just barely fit in the frame, something that's been annoying me lately.
Forum: General Talk 10-15-2010, 07:43 AM  
Why are camera sensors still rectangular?
Posted By m88k
Replies: 15
Views: 8,369
Just wondering, as our lenses seem to be staying round (outside the compact category), why our camera bodies still use such a small fraction of the imaging circle.

I know packing the shapes on a circular platter will reduce production efficiency, but imagine a sensor that is cross shaped; a 3:2 rectangle overlayed on a 2:3 rectangle, possibly with the outside corners connected to make a octagon. Now you go from landscape to portrait with the flick of a switch, touch of a button, or even in post! Well not for the average user, it seems like the added cost would be offset for the high-end crowd; they'd no longer need a vertical grip or an L-plate.

Also, as I understand it, the outer edges of the sensor are occupied by processing elements (at least on CCDs) If you could move these into the triangles that turn the cross into an octagon, you could still reduce the maximum dimension of the sensor.

Just food for thought.

EDIT:
Please note that below I make the switch to proposing a bigger, 24mm square sensor, as it really probably make more sense than any exotic shape.

Also, while we're breaking conventions, how about adding a hole for an anti-twist pin like those found on camcorders. It'd greatly simplify our support purchases, leaving more money to spend on the products the camera manufacturers provide.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 10-02-2010, 10:37 PM  
Clicking Sound When Taking a Photo-K100D
Posted By m88k
Replies: 6
Views: 2,964
I love the the ker-CHUNK of the k100d. So much more satisfying than the sound of my damned AE-1. Oddly enough, my recently acquired ZX-10 is quieter that the k100d. Really seems with the theoretically smaller mirror and shutter, the aps-c camera ought to be the quiet one. Actually, I change that; the zx-10 is the least satisfying camera I own, except that the AE-1 recently failed to expose an entire roll I was really excited about.

pbo, I could be wrong, but it would appear Chuckdua is a relatively new owner of a k100d. Somehow I doubt he's ready to make the jump from a relatively cheap used body to a 1500 usd K-5. Personally, I'm hoping I wake up one day to find a K-5 has materialized on my dresser, but I'm more after the viewfinder, high ISO and high speed autofocus.
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