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Forum: Sold Items 06-09-2013, 03:27 AM  
For Sale - Sold: Pentax SMC-DA* 50-135mm f/2.8 - Excellent condition
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 5
Views: 1,596
Lens sold, payment received. Thank you for the fast payment, kyprous. Will ship tomorrow.
Forum: Sold Items 06-04-2013, 03:31 PM  
For Sale - Sold: Pentax SMC-DA* 50-135mm f/2.8 - Excellent condition
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 5
Views: 1,596
Attaching a couple of pictures from my trip to Nepal (In order, F4.0, 4.5, 2.8, 2.8. Last one is not the sharpest due to shaky hands, but I enjoy it so why not :) )
Full size here: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ung91eaysejj6uz/axotZzL2as
Forum: Sold Items 06-04-2013, 02:45 PM  
For Sale - Sold: Pentax SMC-DA* 50-135mm f/2.8 - Excellent condition
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 5
Views: 1,596
PentaxForums.com Marketplace Listing

Item for Sale
Pentax SMC-DA* 50-135mm f/2.8 - Excellent condition

Asking Price
500 GBP

Item Location
Leeds (England)

Item Description
Selling my 50-135mm f2.8. It's a fantastic lens - sharp and bright while still being very portable. Fully weather-sealed with fast and quiet ultrasonic focus and internal zoom.
I'm sorry to see it go, but I need the funds so I'll be downgrading to my old 50-200mm.

The lens is in excellent condition and an excellent specimen optically. It has not been used much, and mostly indoors. No marks on the glass. The lens is fully weather sealed and internally zooming, so no need to worry about dust. There is some slight wear around the mount, as may be expected.

I do not have the original box, but the lens will come with original caps, hood, lens pouch and Pentax paperwork.
I will include an excellent Marumi DHG super protective filter which has been on it since new.

Lens specs:
- 50-135mm telephoto zoom lens with F/2.8 maximum aperture for Pentax digital SLR cameras
- Aspherical elements, special optical-glass elements, and original glass coatings
- Tightly sealed weather- and dust-resistant housing stands up to rainy or dusty conditions
- SDM system produces smooth, quiet autofocusing; SP coating protects exposed lens elements
- Measures 3 inches in diameter and 5.4 inches long; weighs 24.2 ounces without hood

Are you the original owner of the item being sold?
Yes

Are you selling or trading this item?
Selling

Item Condition (Key)
Used
Excellent

Shipping Destinations
Worldwide

Shipping Charge
At cost

Shipping Services
Royal Mail Special Delivery, Parcelforce, Other

Accepted Payment Types
PayPal Check/Money Order Other (Elaborate)

Return Policy & Additional Details
Returns accepted if fault found or condition unsatisfactory.

Will ship worldwide at cost using buyer's preferred courier. Collection in person in Northern England is welcome.

Please send me a private message if interested in the item!
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 03-03-2010, 03:45 AM  
Pentax K7 3rd party battery grip
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 242
Views: 83,168
My DX grip barely leaves my camera. It's great - looks and feels original, only the clickwheels have a different (more "clicky") feel to them than Pentax. They are still perfectly usable and reliable, just different.

I do not like stealing from Pentax (as this arguably is), nor do I like the lack of warranty or weathersealing, but the price for the original grip in the UK is silly. I would have definitely bought an original grip at 100.

The "DX can make them for $50, why can't Pentax" argument isn't entirely fair to be honest. The HK cloners have no quality control, no R&D, marketing or customer service costs to worry about. It's entirely possible that the extra grips are made in the same factories and from the same parts as the originals, in after hours production runs - thus at basically no cost (I'm not convinced that's the case here, but it's certainly common enough).
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 12-21-2009, 07:55 PM  
Opinions on third party battery grip for K-7
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 31
Views: 8,780
Guys, seriously: DealExtreme: $54.77 External Battery Grip for Pentax K7 DSLR
This is ONE SIXTH of the UK price of the original D-BG4.

As people have said - these look identical to the original. I have little doubt that they are made in the same factory - the effort it would take to clone the design so exactly by a third party would not be worth it. I cannot tell the difference between the build of my original K-7 battery and the knock-off backup I bought - I think some factory in Vietnam or the Philippines is making a bit of money on the side and it's bloody great news for my wallet.

Actually, looking at the ebay listings above a bit closer it looks like they are not the same as the DealExtreme version. The layout of the screws on the DX and original version is the same but different on ebay. Also, the retaining pins are metal on the DX and Pentax variants. At the same time, the DX version seems to lack the slight textured surface finish of the original. Oh well, I will see when mine arrives.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 12-02-2009, 04:39 PM  
KPS 1.3x magnifying eyepiece
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 144
Views: 59,568
I wouldn't recommend it.

In fact I stopped using the KPS on my K7 a while ago. It made everything larger, but meant I had to stick the camera right against my eye to see the whole frame. It's more comfortable to use with out the magnifier and while the magnification was very nice, ultimately it detracted from comfort of use. This is without glasses - with glasses I could see like 60% of the frame if I forced the eyecup against the glass. Not good.
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 11-30-2009, 03:40 PM  
RF-602 Wireless FLash Triggers
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 203
Views: 88,445
Actually, I should probably post an update on these, since I have previously praised the Nikon-style transmitter as the solution to all Pentaxian problems.

The Nikon-style RF-602 has stopped working for me. I did a couple of shoots with them, syncing at 1/180 just fine, with the green light coming on as expected. After a couple of weeks, I was doing another strobist session and the Nikon Tx just failed horrifically on me - half the time the green light would not come on. Not only that, but when this happened, the Tx actually locked up and failed to sync even below 1/100. About 1/3 of the time, everything would work fine, but the rest of the time the flashes would fire so late I could watch them fire through the viewfinder - the mirror had time to return before they fired. Tried 3 different triggers, fresh batteries - the same triggers work just fine on Nikon body. Tried cleaning contacts etc...

Got back home, tried the Canon-style Tx, which syncs at 1/160, with banding at 1/180 - but I'm happy to work with this, since it's perfectly reliable.
I have no idea why triggers which worked about 95% reliably on all my previous tests and two several-hour sessions would just stop working altogether on the same camera, with the same firmware, lens, memory card, settings, etc... It's just odd.

More tedious details:
The behaviour is very weird - if I hold the Nikon Tx button half-pressed on the hotshoe and fire, it always syncs fine. If I have the Tx on the camera and half-press the shutter, sometimes the green light comes on (flickering rapidly, but triggering just fine - this is how it always used to be before) and sometimes it stays off (not triggering). If I half-press the Tx button while in this "failed" state, the green light fails to switch on! This seems to imply the digital stream the trigger is getting from the body is actually somehow locking up the trigger circuitry momentarily. Very, very odd.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 11-07-2009, 03:26 PM  
Don't know how they do this but its amazing
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 9
Views: 3,729
You can do image transparency in Flash, that's all this is.

And yeah, seeing as I have spent quite some taking thousands of frames for timelapse videos, this feels a bit cheap, but that does not detract from the fact that it is an effective and innovative way of presenting an image and does relay the sense of passing time and the city changing with it quite well.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 11-06-2009, 04:05 PM  
Don't know how they do this but its amazing
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 9
Views: 3,729
Not even time lapse, just two shots, with the morning shot having a sliding exposure compensation as you move down the top half of the picture and then the night shot starting to fade in as the pointer is moved even lower. The illusion kind of falls apart as the images crossfade.

It's a cool technique but an actual "interactive" timelapse would have been magnificent.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-31-2009, 05:25 AM  
The Best Filter? is there such a thing?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 34
Views: 21,712
Marumi Super DHG filters are top notch. My old Hoya Pro1 has ridiculously soft coatings and got scratched during gentle cleaning, the Marumi is great optically and holding up well so far.
Read the lenstip.com article linked above (for both polarizers and UV filters) - Marumi performs as well as the "top range" filters several times the price.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-28-2009, 01:23 PM  
Observation on DA* 50-135mm AF/MF operations
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 6
Views: 3,300
Heard varying reports, but it's definitely usable at 135mm. Aome people say it's alright down to 80-100mm or so. Expect vignetting,
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-25-2009, 08:38 AM  
Pentax 50-135 or Sigma 70-200?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 20
Views: 13,498
I just ordered myself a Da* 50-135 :D

The Sigma 70-200 is a good lens, full-frame and the extra length would certainly be nice.
At the same time, I'm hoping to make this lens part of my usual carry-around kit (along with the Sigma 10-20 and Da* 16-50) and the Pentax is half the weight and significantly smaller. My housemate has the 70-200 and it is a proper commitment to take that lens anywhere.

I also have been enjoying the weather seals and build quality on my 16-50 since I got it.

The 50-135 range sounds a bit limiting, but I mostly want the lens for street photography, gigs, etc... I think the 200mm-equivalent range is a good one for that purpose.
The way I figure, even with the 70-200, I would want to buy a proper ultra-tele someday if I ever develop a knack for wildlife photography.
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 10-25-2009, 05:23 AM  
RF-602 Wireless FLash Triggers
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 203
Views: 88,445
Oh, I assure you, all I know about the Pentax flash system you could learn with a multimeter and a pair of calipers. I have not gone as far as trying to decode the protocols used (as people have done for the Canon system) and I thought that flashes being triggered by shorting the center contact is as universal a standard as it gets.

I can think of two possible reasons it doesn't fire. Either the flash expects a voltage on the center pin, rather than just being grounded, or the flash will only fire if there is a signal on one of the TTL pins as well as on the center pin. Either of those situatons would require a mod of the flash or the trigger to make it all work.
In order to figure this out, somoeone would really need to record and analyse the signal on each of the hotshoe contacts as a flash is triggered. I only have an analog oscilloscope on hand, which is not really up to the task and I'm quite busy over the next week or so. I may look into borrowing a storage oscilloscope or some kind of signal analyser from university and take a good look at Pentax's protocol when I hasve some free time.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 10-24-2009, 10:18 AM  
Adobe Lightroom 3 Beta 1
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 32
Views: 7,677
Yes, but technically you can achieve anything you can do in Photoshop in MS Paint - just a different interface, but some people prefer the uncluttered, minimalist style of Paint ;)

LR allows you to see the effects of all the adjustments immediately, save multiple versions of the same image, apply the same adjustments to hundreds of images easily, revert any or all adjustments in an instant and so on... The core of the tools is the same, but the workflow is oh-so-much better, to the point where you cannot really say they are the same thing.

With PS + ACR, you can only make RAW adjustments as you open the image, once it's open, the RAW data and adjustments are not available and you would need to start the whole edit over again if you decide to tweak the RAW import settings. And you need to do this for each individual picture.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 10-23-2009, 12:34 AM  
K-7 new firmware ?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 92
Views: 20,285
Thought that might be the case - I just haven't used the K-7 much in situations where the AF lamp does anything, so I'm not that familiar with its algorithms, but it seemed to be behaving differently now than before, so I thought I'd throw it to the forums.

Noise seems the same.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 10-22-2009, 01:32 PM  
K-7 new firmware ?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 92
Views: 20,285
Ok, I may be imagining things, but the above post got me to try some low light AF and it seems like the AF-assist lamp is more decisive - before te camera could not make up its mind whether to turn on the lamp or not - now it seems to engage almost instantly if needed. It seems in low light he K-7 pulses the light on and deterines whether it's actually doing anything. It also turns the light on to check focus, then off as the lens motor moves into the expected focus position and then on again to verify as needed. Was this the behaviour before?

Kameraten - I cannot replicate the bug you mention, could you provide more details? Movig the AF point in contrast-AF works just fine for me...
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 10-22-2009, 08:17 AM  
Adobe Lightroom 3 Beta 1
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 32
Views: 7,677
Well, yes, but Lightroom is one piece Adobe software in like 8 years to actually be a fresh and well though-out concept, and it's a shame to see it stop innovating and just go the way of all the "CS" bloatware.



Well, I indeed do 90% of my processing in Lightroom. If it had more competent selection tools, I would do about 95% of processing there. Lightroom's selective filters would be ridiculously powerful if only they added a colour range selection, magic wand, lasso tool and add/subtract/intersect/invert mask tools.

I hate it when companies cripple their products just to differentiate between them - if Lightroom was not made by the same company as Photoshop, I'm sure we would already have all the features on my wish list.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 10-22-2009, 08:01 AM  
Pentax prices in Japan?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 14
Views: 4,171
Wow, that would be absolutely great!
My dad's only going towards the second half of November, so plenty of time yet. Knowing him, he already has a full itinerary so I'll find out where he will be staying and try to google up some shops in the vicinity - if you could advise which ones are any good and help with the directions, that would be capital!
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 10-22-2009, 04:44 AM  
Adobe Lightroom 3 Beta 1
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 32
Views: 7,677
Really not much of an upgrade - I'll beleive the claimed engine improvements when I see them. It seems like they pushed this one out for the sake of maintaining an even product cycle.
No advanced selection tools, no perspective/distortion correction, no panorama stitching or HDR options...

Direct upload to Flickr should be quite nice though.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 10-22-2009, 02:55 AM  
Pentax prices in Japan?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 14
Views: 4,171
Thanks a bunch, sumo! This is the kind of info I was looking for.
Yeah, my dad will be stopping over in Tokyo for a couple of days - it'll probably have to be a B+M store. I'll just give him a list of stuff I want with ballpark expected prices and leave him to it :D

Even at Y18000, the K-7 grip would be half the current UK retail price....
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 10-20-2009, 11:27 AM  
K-7 will be available in colors too!!!! Confirmed with image!
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 21
Views: 7,202
Ok, the hood I can deal with, but is that yellow paint spatter all over the body and lens!? Ouch.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 10-20-2009, 06:57 AM  
Pentax prices in Japan?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 14
Views: 4,171
Thanks for the links, Mike! The prices are quite a bit cheaper (consider that a Da* 16-50 costs like $1500 in the UK currently and the K-7 vertical grip is just shy of $400), but the difference in price is not really enough to justify me getting lenses on a whim.
(I would like a prime in the 24-30 and one in the 70-100mm range as well as a dedicated macro lens, but I cannot justify buying prime glass that is darker than my existing zoom lenses, and the FA Limiteds are just too damn pricey)

I hate to be a bother, but do you know where I could find the price of the D-BG4 grip?
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 10-20-2009, 05:38 AM  
Pentax prices in Japan?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 14
Views: 4,171
My father is going to Japan in a few weeks. He doesn't know it yet, but he will be bringing me back some Pentax gear ;)
I was looking around for a Japanese price list for Pentax, but google fails me. Seeing as I'm in the UK, I'm sure most anything will be cheaper over there, but it would be nice to see how big the differences are.

Could anyone point me to a source of Japanese Pentax prices? Also, how widely available is Pentax stuff around Japan? Can you buy it easily in brick+mortar stores in Tokyo?

A D-BG4 battery grip would be nice, but depending on the prices, I might be swayed to get a nice prime as well :D
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 10-19-2009, 12:26 PM  
K-7 new firmware ?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 92
Views: 20,285
Yeah, as much as I would love to be able to afford a full-frame camera and lenses to go with it, the size and weight are actually becoming prohibitive at this point. I can barely carry my K-7 and 3-4 lenses plus tripod on extended hikes. This is on day trips, I'm not sure how I'll manage when I have to carry trekking gear as well. The extra 1-2kg and space that a full frame setup would imply might just prove too much.
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 10-18-2009, 04:22 PM  
Where to find this Flash acessory?
Posted By PolishMike
Replies: 12
Views: 3,706
Just make sure you cut around the edges and not down the middle as you would with a sheet of paper :D
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