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Forum: General Talk 09-28-2016, 10:54 PM  
Advice on astronomic telescope - which one?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 11
Views: 554
I think a great first scope is an 8" Dobsonian, if you can deal with the size. It is amazing how much you can see, definitely a great value. The basic swivel mount will force you to learn to star hop and become familiar with the sky.
The cons are that it is so big, that it can be a pain to manage. Plus, because of the basic mount, it is hard to track objects as they move across the sky.
Forum: Pentax K-3 07-05-2015, 09:23 PM  
Undecided Nikon User
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 40
Views: 2,808
Seems like you have a lot nice lenses. I think it is foolish to change systems now. Stick with Nikon, they make nice cameras too.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 03-28-2015, 07:40 PM  
Anyone with Experience: DA 15 Ltd or Ricoh GW-3 21mm?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 5
Views: 1,642
Thanks for the helpful replies.

Though I believe the IQ would be good, I can't help but think it would be a bad investment. The GW-3 might not be compatible with the next GR, so it might have a low resale value. The DA15mm will probably hold it's value for a while.
Though I would be sorry to see the DA15 go, I also have the DA14 which I would still use as a general wide angle lens.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 03-27-2015, 04:22 PM  
Anyone with Experience: DA 15 Ltd or Ricoh GW-3 21mm?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 5
Views: 1,642
Has anyone done a direct comparison of the DA15 and the Ricoh GR with GW-3 21mm wide angle converter?

I used to keep an old Fuji f31 on my harness while climbing, but the old outdated camera finally died. My idea was to replace the Fuji with a Ricoh GR for climbing and add the GW-3 21mm wide angle converter for backpacking.
This would replace my current backpacking kit which consists of a K-01 and the DA15 and DA40.

Unfortunately, I would probably need to sell the DA15mm to partially fund these purchases.
Would my results with the Ricoh be equal to or better than results with the DA15?

One of my goals is to lighten my load, but not at the cost of image quality. Climbing/backpacking photos are my most cherished, so I would rather not compromise IQ.

Thanks!
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 02-11-2015, 10:55 AM  
pentax k50 underwater housing
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 2
Views: 2,249
How deep are you looking to go?
I used a DiCAPac for my K-01 on a recent snorkeling trip. It was a pain to deal with, but the results were decent.
Forum: Pentax K-3 01-08-2015, 09:41 PM  
Hmmmm... A bit disappointed
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 45
Views: 5,607
Are you viewing 100% crops or looking at pictures the same size? Comparing 100% crops doesn't really make sense.
Also, comparing photos at that shutter speed is adding too much room for error.
Forum: Sold Items 12-11-2014, 09:19 PM  
For Sale - Sold: K-5, 15, 21, 31, 35, 40, 70, Metz 58 Flash
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 30
Views: 3,826
I am interested in the DA 15mm Limited if it is still available. I sent a PM.
Forum: Pentax K-5 11-17-2014, 10:32 PM  
K5iis vs OM-D EM5 vs FF (Landscapes)
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 21
Views: 3,294
I would be more focussed on lenses than formats. If you are pairing the D800 with the Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8G, you might be blown away. If you use it with a kit lens, maybe not.
I always felt that m4/3's was lacking good ultrawides. For Pentax, the Sigma 8-16, Pentax 12-24, and DA15 are all highly regarded, as well as a few others.
By the way, you don't need ultrawides for landscapes. My best landscapes have come from my DA70.
Forum: General Photography 10-30-2014, 03:26 PM  
Best phone for photographers??
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 39
Views: 2,593
I just got the Note 4. It is my first Samsung phone. The first thing you'll notice is the screen. It is absolutely stunning. Much nicer than the iPhone 6+. Go to a store and compare them side by side. The 2560 x 1440 is great.
The camera is very nice also. Optical image stabilization seems to work well. I don't know how it compares with the iPhone. I assume the iPhone is great, as previous iPhones were already very good, and the 6+ has stabilization also.
I haven't shot any video yet, but the Note 4 does shoot 4k. Not sure if that interests you or not.
Other than that, I really like the stylus. It is very precise. The battery lasts a long time also.
Another interesting thing is the quick charger. I can plug it in for an hour and it is charged after a full day of use. Pretty neat.
I would suggest comparing the phones side by side. The usability and feel of the phones is very different. You would probably be happy with either.
And yes, they feel huge.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 09-30-2014, 10:01 PM  
hard underwater housing for Pentax
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 7
Views: 1,518
How deep are you looking to go?
I had my K-01 in a DiCAPac for eight days while snorkeling at depths up to 15 feet. Not the most convenient solution, but it was cheap and produced good results if you stay within its limits.
Forum: Pentax K-30 & K-50 09-27-2014, 08:37 PM  
I'm gonna hate this
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 25
Views: 2,843
Skylight and UV filters are not necessary on digital cameras. The only benefit would be front element protection, and that is debatable.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 07-17-2014, 08:33 PM  
SMC Pentax-M 100mm F4 Macro lens
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 11
Views: 995
It is a little harder to find, but I would suggest a Super-Multi-Coated Takumar 105mm f/2.8. It is very compact and renders portraits beautifully. It is a probably my favorite Takumar.

I also have the Pentax-M 100mm f/4 which is a very nice lens (especially for that price). It could get frustrating with the long focus throw and small aperture.

If you are going for a 135mm, look for the 6-element S-M-C Takumar 135mm f/2.5. This is my favorite 135 (most 135's are nice though), but it is a little big heavy.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 07-12-2014, 09:42 PM  
Using Nikon/Canon mount lenses on Pentax K-500
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 11
Views: 1,626
Another cheap option is the older manual focus Vivitar 400mm f/5.6. They are decent performers, much better than the numerous f/6.3 lenses found everywhere. You often see them sell for less than they should. It has to be used on a sturdy tripod though. It is very difficult to handhold.
But, I agree with others that the DA 55-300mm is probably your best option. Easy to use, can be handheld, very light and compact, and good results.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 06-01-2014, 08:38 AM  
Outdoor wedding photos - best camera settings?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 24
Views: 2,335
I am not a wedding photographer, but here are my suggestions:
1. Shoot in RAW - this will give you latitude in case you mess up exposure. Plus, it will allow you to adjust camera settings such as white balance afterwards.
2. Use center-weighted exposure. You want to make sure your subjects are properly exposed.
3. You will find differing opinions, but don't use the center focus and recompose. This can cause missed focus when using large apertures. Select your focus point or use live view and adjust focus.
4. Shoot off of a tripod. This will allow you to adjust poses and things easier.
5. Be positive and keep the couple engaged.
6. Be mindful of backgrounds, don't just use beautiful backgrounds, use backgrounds that will enhance the shot. For example, beautiful foliage often times makes for busy and unpleasing backgrounds.
Good luck, and post results.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 04-20-2014, 11:24 PM  
Sigma 10-20 vs. DA 21mm
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 27
Views: 3,266
I second Tibbits in recommending the DA 16-45mm. That would probably be the cheapest and most flexible option. 16mm is plenty wide and f/4 is pretty bright on modern dSLR's.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 03-18-2014, 03:02 PM  
70mm f2.4limited or samyang 85mm f1.4 for portraits?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 67
Views: 6,492
To me, this is a no brainer. I think the DA 70m f/2.4 is one of the crown jewels of the Pentax lineup. I think it doesn't get it's recogntion due to being overshadowed by the FA 77.
The lens has no major faults, is sharp, renders nicely, and handles very well. I love the size and weight.

If you really need f/1,4, then go for the Samyang. If you don't, I would definitely go with the Pentax. For the focal length, f/2.4 is large enough to get an adequately shallow DOF.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 03-05-2014, 01:23 AM  
Manual Focus: K-01 or Focus Screen?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 12
Views: 1,222
I have a K-5 and K-01 also. I use the K-5 for my AF lenses and the K-01 for my manual focus lenses. I think manual focusing is a breeze with focus peaking.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-21-2014, 11:57 AM  
Okay, satisfy my LBA. It's my birthday, I have $200, what to buy?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 26
Views: 1,934
Easy! The Samyang/Rokinon 8mm fish-eye is a bit over $200 new and can be found under $200 used.
It is a very fun lens to play with.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 01-17-2014, 04:46 PM  
Latest thoughts on monitors?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 10
Views: 2,052
Have you looked at the cheap Korean IPS monitors on auction website?
I got one and it is incredible, especially for the price.
Forum: Pentax K-01 01-09-2014, 11:11 PM  
Advice on whether K-01 is right for me?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 33
Views: 2,832
I have a K-5 and a K-01 (along with a K10D). For manual lenses, I almost exclusively use the K-01. I love "Focus Peaking" (if you don't know what it is, look it up). It works great and is very accurate. You will be amazed by the quality of the K-01 for the price. It is very solid and feels better built than Canikon's upper level cameras.
If you are going to be using manual focus lenses, I strongly advise you to make sure your camera has focus peaking. The K-5 does not. I do not know about the K-500.

For autofocus lenses, I still use my K-5 more. I like a traditional viewfinder and the focusing is much faster. Plus, it has more dedicated dials and buttons, so it is quicker to use.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 12-16-2013, 12:55 AM  
Considering switching over to nikon
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 74
Views: 5,544
Even though you are probably trolling...


I do not understand what this means. Are you are complaining about having physical controls instead of digging through menus to change settings? OK.


I know what you mean. My K5 has a button that says ISO and WB. I wish it was clear what they are for.


The D3s didn't come out until late 2009. It is a 12 megapixel camera. At the time of release, it cost $5000. It is a nice camera, but comparing Nikon's top of the line pro camera with a mid-level Pentax enthusiast camera makes no sense.


Please be sure to post pictures from your new camera so we can see what an improvement it made.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 12-15-2013, 11:01 PM  
Nikon D200 as starter camera?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 11
Views: 1,074
I would not get the D200. Way too old. Though the old CCD sensors were great at base ISO, the CCD sensors are miles ahead in low light performance.
I would choose the D7000 over the D200 any day.

Beware though, if you are planning to upgrade to FF (D610) at some point, make sure your lenses are compatible. I don't believe the 35mm f/1.8 you mentioned will work on FF.
Also, are you sure the 50mm AF-D has full time manual (quick shift)? I thought that was the internal motor lenses like the 50mm AF-S G, but I am not sure.

By the way, I love nice build quality, but I have never heard of a plastic mount failing. I have a plastic mount Canon 50mm f/1.8, and it has lasted through rough use for years.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 12-15-2013, 10:12 PM  
Considering switching over to nikon
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 74
Views: 5,544
I have to agree with you. High ISO image quality has improved over the past five years. You could potentially benefit from modernizing your kit.

The "user friendliness" issue doesn't make sense to me. I believe most Canon and Nikon users would agree that the Pentax interface is superior to others. (I came from Canon and have used Nikon extensively).
Going from a K20 to a D3200 would be an exercise in frustration. One dial, no top LCD, few direct access buttons...
That said, the D7100 is a very nice camera with plenty of positives. Does it offer more than the K3 or the K5ii? Not in my opinion. The only reason I would choose the D7100 over the K3 or K5ii is if there are particular lenses that I want that aren't available in Pentax mount.

No offense, but it doesn't sound like you fully understand how to use your camera. I would first master your current camera so you can figure out what camera would better suit your needs in the future.
Luckily, all current interchangeable lens cameras, from m4/3rd's to Canikons, are pretty much excellent and would serve 99% of people just fine. You can't go wrong no matter your decision.

In the end, if you want to change systems, you should make the change. For us amateurs, photography is about having fun. Use the tool that brings you the most joy.
If you are after improved image quality/low light capabilities, changing systems will not give you what you want. I would suggest a modern Pentax dSLR or investing in better lenses, flashes, etc.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11-10-2013, 01:06 AM  
Lens Choice
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 5
Views: 785
To me, 300 doesn't give much more reach over 250.

I know you want longer, but have you thought about the DA* 60-250? Big improvement over the DA 55-300.
I think if you really need more reach for wildlife, the Sigma 50-500 is probably your best option.

from my experience:
DA 55-300 < DA* 60-250 < DA* 300
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11-10-2013, 12:57 AM  
pentax da 16-45 vs 16-50 da* for K5?
Posted By Shamwow
Replies: 18
Views: 6,944
I have the DA 16-45. It is a surprisingly good lens. Maybe the best value in the Pentax world.

But, I don't believe it is in the same class as the DA* 16-50. The DA* is 2-3 times more expensive, and the build quality and optics reflect this.
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