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Forum: Sold Items 09-21-2019, 12:00 PM  
For Sale - Sold: SMC Pentax-FA 35mm F2 AL with hood, case, box (shipping incl)
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 4
Views: 1,151
Complimentary bump for a steal on a very capable full frame lens. Several members here have made amazing pictures with the FA35. A favorite from @kiwi_jono:

Old cash register | Jonathan Wilson | Flickr
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 09-07-2019, 08:55 AM  
Panorama-orama - Post your Panos
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 2,175
Views: 185,667
From this morning. I'd meant to do a careful job with tripod, but the train came barreling along before I could get set up. Three shots freehand, stitched in Hugin.


three engines crossing near Colo

Pentax K-1ii with FA43 limited
Forum: Pentax K-1 08-17-2019, 07:02 AM  
Post your K-1 pictures!
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 27,029
Views: 2,320,588
Crop mode with DA15.


dizzy
Forum: General Talk 08-15-2019, 05:46 AM  
What book on your table now
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 375
Views: 20,107
From 130 years ago: "The Golden Bough" by James Frazer. One of those works that digs at questions behind questions, with regard to mythology and folklore - as well as where some even modern ideas about monarchies may have come from.

It's fairly dense and this is my second time through it, trying to digest a little more this time around.

Also it is old enough to have migrated into the public domain, so there are electronic versions available.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 08-09-2019, 04:06 PM  
The K20D Club
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 487
Views: 74,012
If you all will forgive the intrusion of a movin' picture:


night and morning over the Iowa River

(click above to view in flickr, which doesn't embed video in forum posts)

One use my continued uses for the K20D has been shooting time-lapses when camping. A camera with a more modern sensor would do the job with less noise (and yeah I might switch to the K-1ii next time around), but when at a state park setting up within sight of a public trail, I feel a little more secure risking the older hardware. At its age and after all the abuse I've put it through, the K20D certainly owes me nothing -- every shutter click is gravy. Honestly do these ever wear out?

This is with an external intervalometer and AC power supply connected with a long extension cord to our cabin. The night sequence is shot at one frame every 80 seconds; after the exposure adjustment for daytime you'll see the frame rate change to every 10 seconds. The lens is a DA15. There is some stray light from a nearby floodlamp visible in the right-hand tree.
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 08-05-2019, 04:46 AM  
Thematic Flickr Explored
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 1,092
Views: 78,721
Woke up to find this one had hit explore. It was shot a year ago with a Pentax WG-2 - the only camera I had on me because I knew we'd be out on a boat under the falls later in the day - from the observation tower on the Ontario side of Niagara Falls. I just got around to processing the panorama yesterday.


Niagarama
Forum: Pentax K-01 06-30-2019, 08:55 AM  
My "new" (to me) K-01
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 22
Views: 3,414
Maybe along those same lines -- I never feel like I quite own a camera until I've at least lost its hotshoe cover.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 06-30-2019, 07:59 AM  
Lens from K-200D on new body
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 4
Views: 383
I used to have the K200D/18-55 combo. Eventually the pair was given to one of my kids. The 18-55 was always a useful lens for me, especially at the wide end. It should do at least as well on a modern body.
Forum: Pentax K-01 06-30-2019, 07:36 AM  
My "new" (to me) K-01
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 22
Views: 3,414
Congrats, and nice pictures. Definitely distinctive in yellow! My K-01 still gets lots of use too - it fills the gap between the Q7 and K1. My walkaround lens is often a DA21, and I've also liked results from the FA31 but it overbalances the body somewhat, so it seems like the DA35 makes a lot of sense in that role.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 06-23-2019, 04:26 PM  
CWRailwayman...Denny...RIP
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 26
Views: 3,549
May he rest in peace. His posts here were interesting and fun. Despite how sadly it ended, he's one who definitely "got busy living" and I'm glad for the living he did and what he shared from it.
Forum: Post Your Photos! 06-20-2019, 02:31 PM  
Nature a nesting Carolina Wren
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 1
Views: 305
A wren couple built a nest in a basket of begonias within days of when I'd hung it up. It's near our front door and they normally scramble away whenever we walk past, but I managed to glimpse one of them in there after work today. She (or he -- can't really tell with wrens) was keeping a close eye on me though. DA*200 handheld.


nesting Carolina wren
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 06-14-2019, 11:57 AM  
Panorama-orama - Post your Panos
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 2,175
Views: 185,667
4 rows of 11 shots, stitched in Hugin.


Municipal Light & Power

---------- Post added 2019-06-14 at 02:02 PM ----------



Lovely - were you up in the astronomical clock tower?
Forum: General Photography 06-14-2019, 03:01 AM  
Fullframe camera is for whom?
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 52
Views: 3,190
The problem with harsh mid-day light is universal to photography, and a full frame upgrade doesn't help very much with it. What does help some is to shoot RAW, maybe bracket exposures or expose a little to the left, and then attend to your postprocessing tools/techniques. Most of what you say suggests you should stick with the KP. But on the other hand:
  • When going from K-3 to K-1, I found the weight difference was mostly a non-issue.

  • The image-quality benefits of full frame are not limited to just providing more megapixels for printing.

  • Seriously, only 500-600 clams for a K-1? That's a ridiculous deal, unless there is something wrong with it.

Forum: Product Suggestions and Feedback 06-12-2019, 06:39 AM  
Best wide-angle lens for K-1?
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 32
Views: 2,277
You might find this blog post interesting. The author's statement that "there is no one lens that’s better for landscapes than another" is a little hyperbolic but read the context and you'll understand. Not every landscape shot needs to be wide angle, and some stunning landscapes are made with telephotos. Keep yourself versatile so you can look at what a given scene gives you and choose the composition that speaks to you.

The FA31's famous "pixie dust" is most apparent when there is some separation between subject and background -- environmental portraiture and such. It can be recommended unreservedly to any K-1 owner on that basis -- I adore mine -- and it's also a fine landscape lens just because it's a great lens all around. But if you're really concentrating on landscapes, I think Mirocal's recommendation of the FA 20-35/4 makes a lot of sense. It can go quite a bit wider than the FA31 when the scene calls for it; and at those times when you want an even bigger angle, if you don't have an ultrawide in your bag, a few shots at 20mm stitched in software might be just the ticket.

Here's a thoughtful review of the FA 20-35 by one of our forum members, "northcoastgreg."
Forum: Pentax Compact Cameras 06-12-2019, 01:27 AM  
Useless MX-1 feature isn't useless after all
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 4
Views: 1,359
... and I just found out the picture got "explored" on Flickr. I haven't had that happen in a while.




Great advice. There are enough old low-capacity cards lying around here that there's no excuse not to at least have one tucked in a wallet.
Forum: Pentax Compact Cameras 06-11-2019, 07:09 AM  
Useless MX-1 feature isn't useless after all
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 4
Views: 1,359
The MX-1 has a little stash of internal memory so you can still take photos if you don't have a working SD card with you. I'd never used that memory before, but realized when out exploring in the sticks yesterday that I had pulled the card out a few days before and just left the camera in my car.

Turns out there's enough of that rainy-day capacity to support shooting a multi-row panorama in JPEG, though it probably would have run out of room if I'd tried to do this one (two rows of 6 portrait-orientation shots) in RAW.


150th Street Bridge, Gilbert, Iowa
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 06-09-2019, 07:10 AM  
Thematic Brenizer Method photos
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 276
Views: 23,945
A few 50mm handhelds (SMC 50 1:1.2) from a botanical garden visit.



Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 05-30-2019, 04:37 AM  
DA* 16-50 with screwdrive AF, but manual focus doesn’t work
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 9
Views: 755
Disagreeing with the previous comment: if the screw drive autofocus works reliably and there aren't optical flaws, $120 seems a fair price for a 16-50. It might be the only lens in my bag that I have never once needed to use manual focus with.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 05-29-2019, 07:03 AM  
K1 won't operate in Manual mode
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 7
Views: 668
As others have said, the most likely cause is the contacts between lens and camera mount. This is because they are sometimes exposed to the elements when umounting/remounting the lens. Second most likely is an electrical contact inside the lens, essentially a switch associated with the aperture ring; the lens can't tell the camera what mode it's in, if it doesn't *know* what mode it's in.

Once you've made sure the mount contacts are clean, the camera is very unlikely to be at fault. Anyway the question would be resolved pretty quickly by attaching a different lens if you have one.
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 05-04-2019, 06:14 AM  
Panorama-orama - Post your Panos
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 2,175
Views: 185,667
That is some seriously fine work.
Forum: Pentax K-01 05-01-2019, 08:08 PM  
Add your best K-01 photos here
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 3,648
Views: 633,353
Forum: Pentax Mirrorless Cameras 04-30-2019, 02:45 AM  
Pentax Q Li-68 Battery
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 5
Views: 1,687
Since you mention seeing them on ebay where they are a quarter of the OEM price, I am fairly certain they must be counterfeit. (The full-priced one in your first link might be genuine, if the dealer is reputable, but you weren't going to buy from them, right?) On the other hand, that doesn't necessarily mean it is a bad battery. I've bought a handful of off-brand Q batteries, mostly under the Kastar label, and had no problems with them. Personally, if I'm buying cheap batteries I would rather see them honestly labelled as an off-brand.

At least these seem to have everything spelled correctly on the label, unlike some....
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 04-28-2019, 08:36 AM  
AF360FGZ ii flash unit is down for the count
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 13
Views: 867

AF360FGZii post-mortem


Best guess after teardown: the likely culprit here is the position sensor. It's a linear potentiometer, just a contact sliding over a resistive surface. Any imperfection (corrosion, incomplete contact, dead spot on resistor, etc) can cause the flash to be unable to tell when it has zoomed to its "home" position, causing the motor to keep spinning and grinding along the 2nd worm gear, which is the one that is allowed to "give" a little because of the hinged sled.
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 04-27-2019, 09:35 AM  
Thematic Brenizer Method photos
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 276
Views: 23,945
There are a bunch of "Cy" sculptures that were placed around our city a while ago. Cy is the university mascot at Iowa State, a cardinal that lives in a tornado or something like that ... anyway, there were originally 30 of them, though some have since been auctioned off, and occasionally I'll run across one I hadn't seen before. I started working on these as a Brenizer project, but soon realized it was problematic that most were placed directly in front of businesses, so there can be too little space between subject and background to make dramatic bokeh.

Sticking with the idea of multiple wide open shots, but expanding the sweep to something more like a traditional panorama, has been producing some fun results although it can take a long time to capture a scene. The "focus plane" in Brenizer shooting is effectively spherical, so you can still get plenty of blur as you pan away from the subject. Different projections in the stitching software (equirectangular, cylindrical, rectilinear) seem to make sense for different scenes. One from yesterday in front of the police station:


Cy at the Cop Shop - K50/1.2, equirectangular projection

In the Somerset neighborhood on a sleepy Sunday morning:

Cy on North Stange - K50/1.2, rectlinear projection

So ... I don't know if this entirely qualifies for the topic here, but it's been an interesting direction to veer off into.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 04-26-2019, 02:27 AM  
ZX-5n disassembly with pictures
Posted By Sluggo
Replies: 25
Views: 3,987
And I see the album links are now dead. I'd fix them, but I guess the forum doesn't allow posts to be edited after a certain age? Anyway the work is currently documented at the links below (photos and descriptions intact, but the original flickr mouseover image notes are gone, which makes some of the instructions harder to follow):

Mirror motor gear
Pop up flash
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