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Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 08-25-2017, 10:46 AM  
Contest 2017 Solar Eclipse Challenge!
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 99
Views: 6,958
A bit late to the party, but had to throw my submission out there. Taken near Sage Hen Reservoir, couple hours north of Boise ID.

Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-04-2015, 08:19 PM  
New Pentax Lenses for pre-order 70-200 & 150-450
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 18
Views: 2,782
Following the link above provides a few tidbits of information, one of which is:

* Compatible with DA-series interchangeable lenses, using an image-cropping function

To me this is one of the most CRITICAL things that needs to be done, and Ricoh is smart in doing this. People like me who have invested thousands in DA* lenses wont be left out in the complete cold when they purchase a new FF!
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 08-27-2014, 01:00 AM  
Pentax K-S500 - Just for FUN!
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 18
Views: 3,524
Im pretty sure that the new 'ZAR' is so effective because just pointing a camera of such hideous nature at a zombie will steal a soul (what little is remaining) even from an undead being!
Forum: General Photography 08-25-2014, 07:28 PM  
Understanding your buying preference - Ricoh Survey
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 15
Views: 1,539
Is this survey by invitation only?
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 07-14-2014, 01:08 AM  
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 877
Views: 84,834
Here are my predictions -

K-FF - No where to be seen. Not happening right now. Get over it.
K-1 (Professional APSC Body) - I wouldnt be surprised if Ricoh is gauging the market on this one. Maybe we will see a mystery camera body mockup. Ultimately, it will be unnamed, and there wont be any hard information on it.
K-3 II - Not for Photokina. I suspect that as Ricoh gauges the market, and tinkers in the shadows with higher end models (we know theyve at least toyed with the thought of a FF model) we will likely see a K-3 Mk II in the spring of 2015 as a "holdover" model for something greater. Im guessing though that any K-3 successor will be next year.
K-60/70 - This will be at Photokina. Think K-3 "lite" much like the K-500 was a K-5 "lite". This model will likely have the 24 MP sensor and could have the same AF module as the K-3, as well as weather sealing, but will be limited to a 12-bit RAW, a slower FPS, and will still be without a vertical grip option.
K-600/700 - See K-60/70 above and think of the same differences as between the K-500 and K-50. No weather sealing, slower FPS, no grip. May also have an older AF module to save cost.
Q-5 - I suspect we will see an announcement for a Q improvement. Same 1/1.7" sensor, but with other improvements. 14-16 MP. Better dynamic range (albeit it will be much smaller than most will want - it is a small sensor). There will also be minor improvements to the buffer, and overall response of the camera. This new model may have a body style change to it. There has been a rumor that Ricoh will announce TWO Q models by years end. Im guessing (personal opinion) that they will be identical but one may be labelled as a Q Pro with a metal body instead of a plastic one. They may also try to separate the models more by having the plastic one with a 14 MP sensor and the metal one with a 16 MP sensor. A more radical guess is that they may make them 100% identical internally, with the only difference of the more expensive one having some sort of EVF (either built in or as an attachment that can ONLY communicate with the Q-5 and NOT the older models).
Macro lens for Q - Im guessing that this one is close to ready to go, and we will probably see a more finalized mockup and maybe an official announcement.
K-series lenses - Id guess that Ricoh will show at least one mockup of a lens there. Not sure how close it is to being ready to go. Dont be surprised either if Ricoh announces the DA 18-55 AL HD lens (in God knows how many versions - L, WR, ?) Theyve HD'd everything else, its time for the kit lens to have its day again.

There will also be substantial space given to the 645 and emphasis on "all the lenses" available.

After Photokina 23% of the readers of this post will declare that Ricoh is "Doomed" and of that 23%, 15% of them will jump ship to another brand with 12% of them returning within 12 months. 52% will be utterly disappointed and will threaten to leave the brand if they dont improve their offerings in the next year. As for me, Ill take my K-5 and Q out shooting and love every minute of it! :lol:
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 07-06-2014, 11:58 PM  
No K-60 rumors yet? expectations?
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 160
Views: 18,152
I can both agree and disagree with these ideas. Personally, I dont see why we would ever want to go back to a sub-10 MP sensor in a DSLR...especially when the sensor technology has come such a long way since the days of the K-10/100. However, I can understand the need for smaller files, especially in situations where higher resolution isnt going to be critical. For me personally, I always shoot RAW (or RAW + JPEG in situations like family gatherings, where I can plug the SD card into a tablet/laptop and show the JPEGs to family members). While there would still be the limitations imposed of a denser pixeled sensor (if that makes sense) I think the best solution would be for Pentax to start offering more than one size option for RAW files. Being able to take a 16 or 24 MP sensor and shoot it at 8-12 MP would be fantastic IMO.
Forum: Post Your Photos! 07-05-2014, 03:30 PM  
Cityscape Salt Lake Valley Fireworks
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 0
Views: 342
IMGP1549 by scott.astin, on Flickr
Forum: Post Your Photos! 04-16-2014, 08:08 AM  
Night Share your "Blood Moon" photos here!
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 93
Views: 11,189
Seriously Digitalis?! Make us all look bad by using an ultra long expensive lens, on an ultra high resolution expensive body! Sheesh!

All sarcarsm aside, ;) that image is nothing short of stunning. Seriously probably the best single shot of the moon during the eclipse (colored red) Ive seen yet. Kudos!
Forum: Post Your Photos! 04-15-2014, 11:02 PM  
Night Share your "Blood Moon" photos here!
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 93
Views: 11,189
After seeing how dim the moon was through the camera, the O-GPS1 just went way up on the list of toys to get next. Thankfully, I was able to squeeze out a bit more detail in a reasonable end result thank to Registax.

Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 04-08-2014, 12:04 PM  
K100D Onwards...
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 42
Views: 3,222
f/11 Was chosen because I wanted to get as much depth as I could, while keeping the shutter speed (1/100s) at something fast enough to get a crisp shot. As the camera was resting on my foot, even with SR, I didnt want to push it too much slower. As it was, the depth is still shallow enough that there is softening between the eye of the frog and his nose. I took a series of shots at various settings and this one worked out best (with respect to depth, sharpness, noise from ISO, etc).
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 04-04-2014, 11:12 AM  
K100D Onwards...
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 42
Views: 3,222
Congrats cxdoo on your new K-5ii. I think youll be pleasantly surprised.

I never owned a K100, but did own a K10, which was released around the same time. While it had a higher MP sensor (at 10 MP) it also has the same AF system and the same low light high ISO pains as the K100. When I jumped from the K10 to my K-5, the difference was more than night and day. The increase in resolution was nice, but it was the high ISO shots and dynamic range that was the most rewarding. I think this image I captured is what convinced me the purchase was well worth it:

This image was captured as the sun was going down. I had to balance the camera on the top of my foot (which was standing in the water, submersing the sole of the shoe) to get at eye level with the frog. It was shot at ISO 6400. In order to get the f-stop I needed (f/11), I also purposely dialed in -1ev compensation knowing full well that this sensor had the dynamic range/latitude to still capture details, and have those details visible when I fixed the lighting in post process. A little sharpening, some minor noise reduction, and a small boost in saturation (to account for the slight desaturation shooting at high ISO) and this was the end result (uncropped).

Comparing this to my K10, even shooting at ISO 800 and purposely underexposing a stop would have given me an image that was full of noise (especially chroma noise and banding) and destroying most of the fine details. If I had tried to shoot the above image with my K10 and a flash, the natural reflections in the frogs eye, and the water would have been eliminated, and the light from the flash would have undoubtedly scared off my subject.

I kept my K10, as its still a wonderful backup body, brilliant at low ISOs, and a great loaner if someone wants to come out shooting with me. However, theres a reason the K-5/ii was such a successful body, and that proof is shown in the thousands of images here on this forum!
Forum: Pentax Q 04-04-2014, 07:28 AM  
Question regarding Metz AF24-1 and Q
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 3
Views: 861
Hi Scott,

Thanks Scott!


(LOL) Appreciate the help. The only differences I could find between the Metz and the clones, were that Metz put its own firmware on the AF24-1, and that the GN was ever so slightly higher. Other than that, all models were identical.

Having the support of a company like Metz behind the product is a big plus. In the big picture though, none of these flashes are expensive at all. I just wanted to make sure there wasnt something important I was missing if one of the clones happened to come my way.
Forum: Pentax Q 04-02-2014, 12:43 PM  
Question regarding Metz AF24-1 and Q
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 3
Views: 861
Considering getting a small shoe flash for the Q (my 540FGZ looks rather comical on it). Ive read the posts regarding the small flashes on the market available, and would like to stick with a P-TTL compatible flash. The Metz AF24-1 (and all of its various clones) seem to be good options, but the price difference has me questioning some things...

The Metz reportedly has a USB port for firmware upgrades making the flash "future proof" as Metz calls it. I cant seem to find the USB port anywhere on images of this flash, nor do any of the clones of this model (Polaroid, Bolt, Vivitar) list that their flashes have said USB port. Does the Metz flash actually contain a USB port for firmware upgrades? If so, is the $30-50 cost increase of the Metz over the clones for said port worth it?
Forum: Pentax Q 03-31-2014, 03:20 PM  
The Q forum sure is a happy, peaceful place.
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 61
Views: 4,967

That pretty much sums it up. We are more worried about having fun with a camera that embodies fun, instead of worrying about sensor size.

Wait...WHAT?! You mean they ARENT going to put a FF sensor into this camera?!?! I spent all those hard earned few dollars on a camera thats fun and Ricoh isnt going to put a class leading sensor in it?! Time to sell!

(Checks calendar)...Oh, its only March 31st. I guess Im a day early for an April Fools joke about a FF camera. /shrug. I guess Ill just have to go enjoy my Q a little more :lol:
Forum: Pentax Q 03-24-2014, 09:16 AM  
First outing with the 03 Fisheye
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 7
Views: 1,064
Thanks for the comments everyone!

Best of luck there! With this lens being as affordable as it is, I imagine there wont be nearly as much resistance as if you told her her you wanted a new DA* lens :lol:

Gibby, that is a FANTASTIC shot, and exactly why I wanted to get the 03! Well done!
Forum: Pentax Q 03-23-2014, 10:51 PM  
First outing with the 03 Fisheye
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 7
Views: 1,064
I recently picked up the 03 Fisheye lens from Adorama during the recent big discount sale at Adorama. Knowing that this lens was a slow lens, that was MF and pretty much all plastic, I wasnt expecting stunning image quality for a sub $90 "toy" lens. However, I was pleasantly surprised...

Took a walk in downtown Columbia MO today, around the MU campus, and snapped a couple pics of some of the landmarks there while the weather was nice. The images captured were plenty sharp, even decently so around the edges of the frame, and benefitted greatly from some decently aggressive sharpening. The images were bright, albeit it there was a tendency to slightly underexpose. Contrast was great and the colors were well saturated in the cooler colors (namely the blues), but the warmer colors (oranges/yellows) needed a little extra saturation (not sure if its because all the plant life is still dormant from winter, or if the lens is just a little undersaturated in some circumstances). Flare resistance was very good, although I did what I could to minimize it.

For those like me who like the occasional shot with a fisheye lens, but really have a hard time justifying spending $250-400+ on a fisheye for DSLR (especially when I have quite the list of lenses to purchase with a higher priority), the sub-$100 spent for a fisheye on the Q is very well worth it!

IMGP0512 by scott.astin, on Flickr

For the full (albeit short) set of the days shoot, click here
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 03-21-2014, 01:59 PM  
K20D to K-500 - wise move?
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 13
Views: 1,147
As far as basic photographic capability and image quality, the K-500 will be equal to or better than the K20 in virtually every aspect. The biggest concerns come not with the capability, but with the intangibles...

Switching to a K-500 instead of the K20 (or K-50 upgrade) will mean a smaller more compact body that will be lighter. While this has its perks, some people with larger hands have been rather vocal on the forums about the smaller/lighter bodies for cameras below the K-7/5/3 series builds. Youll also lose things like WR, top LCD, ability to add a battery grip, etc. These are things that some people cannot live without, and that is something that only you can decide. If youre simply looking for an improvement to IQ, then the K-500 is a definite upgrade to the K20...if by nothing but the sensor alone. The 16 MP sensor that is in that body (same base sensor that started in the K-5) is really still to this day, one of the best APS-C sized sensors on the market! You wont be disappointed in the IQ from that sensor!
Forum: Pentax Q 03-21-2014, 08:43 AM  
Sooooo, I bought a Q
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 10
Views: 1,367
The 04 lens will get even closer. It can focus down to just a hair over 7 cm! In fact its really acts like a poor mans macro from indications here:

I have the original Q, 02 kit lens, and fotodiox K->Q adapter. I just bought the 03 fisheye lens, and while there are a few limitations, I can already tell this is going to be a FUN lens. It is plenty wide, and as long as you utilize the focus peaking while using this lens, Ive found it to be sharp enough. Additionally, you should be able to de-fish most of the distortion with proper post developing techniques. I have my eyes set on the 01 prime and the 06 telezoom as additional lenses for the Q. Also, when Ricoh releases a true macro lens for the Q, Ill be highly interested in that.

The Q has quickly become my go-to camera to use in situations where taking my K-5 is either unfeasible or unreasonable (such as going to an NCAA or professional sports event - they tend to frown on "professional" cameras unless you have credentials or authorization to have it. Another prime example is this past summer, my partner played in a sand volleyball league at a local bar/pub. Taking a $2k+ kit in there may get me the best pics, but week after week, I dont want to subject my camera to the possibility of death from beer or other drunken idiots. The Q was perfect for that!).
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 03-20-2014, 01:30 PM  
Upgrade question from a KX
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 20
Views: 1,856
My 2c...

While the K-3 may have a higher resolution sensor at 24 MP than a K-5/ii/s/50 at 16 MP, its easy to get caught up in the "megapixel wars" that are often created by camera companies or enthusiasts. Yes, there will be more resolution in a K-3 image, but the bigger question is do you really need that extra resolution. Going from the K-x 12 MP sensor to a 16 MP sensor will not only give you 4 extra MP, but it will give you a lot of extra things that are often overlooked. Not only is the higher ISO better (in terms of noise quantity), but the noise that exists is easily reduced in post processing. The dynamic range on the 16 MP sensors was the best on the market when they were released, and still are way up there. These bonuses are also evident in the 24 MP sensor on the K-3, but arent any more of an improvement over the 16 MP sensors...which means the only real improvement from the 16 to the 24 MP sensors, was the bump in resolution...

Personally owning a K-5, (and a K10) Ive yet to find a situation where I wished I had MORE resolution. I regularly print my images from 8x8 to 16x20, and the 16x20s I have done look amazing (from the aspects of noise and resolution...not necessarily on my photographic ability :lol: ). Many of these images could print even larger before the need for more resolution became a must. While Im not going to say 24 MP is too much or overkill, I find that the 16 MP in the K-5 body seem to be plenty for the vast majority of printing work that most people would do. Additionally, something to consider is the change in file sizes with a larger resolution sensor. My 10 MP K10 produced 16Mb RAW images. The K-5 produces 24-26Mb RAW images. I believe the K-3 produces 35-40Mb RAW images. For what its worth youll definitely need larger and faster cards with a K-3 and a fast enough computer to handle post processing files of that size (should you choose to).

None of this is meant to steer you away from the K-3, cause I certainly wouldnt say 'no' if one was given to me. However, if someone asked me to trade my K-5 and my DA* 50-135 for a K-3 and 55-300 WR, Id tell them very politely to go to hell. Id MUCH rather have a body that is a generation old with high end glass vs the latest and greatest body with consumer grade glass. Higher MP count wont necessarily make up for the loss in high quality glass. In the Pentax world lenses are forever. Bodies are good for 5-7 years. If I were in your shoes, Id look at better glass with a K-5/II/s/50 body vs a K-3.
Forum: Welcomes and Introductions 03-18-2014, 01:19 PM  
Climbing Back into Photography, 1st DSLR
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 10
Views: 536
Welcome Papabear! in Columbia MO here...just down the road from ya.

As previously stated, sometimes buying the previous generation camera body is better than not. I bought my K-5 just months before the K5ii was released. Even though camera technology continues to progress, its starting to slow down just a little bit - as evidenced by the more common reuse of imaging sensors. The 16MP sensor in the K-30 is the same one in all of the K-5 models, and is really a top notch sensor. It should do you for many years! Besides, if extra investments are to me made...put it into lenses. With DLSR photography, youll replace/upgrade/change out your bodies far faster and more frequently than your lenses. You could spend $1000 on a body, and it will be worth 1/4 of that and worthy of an upgrade in 5 years, or you could spend $1000 on a lens, to find out its not lost a dime in value (sometimes actually being worth more) and will STILL mount on any new body you purchase.

And as far as learning about your new toy...this is the place for it. Shoot pics, post them, and youll get more advice and help from the friendly folks on this forum than you could imagine!
Forum: Pentax Q 03-15-2014, 07:56 PM  
Pentax Collapsible Tabletop Tripod -- Q / Q7
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 18
Views: 2,876
Thanks again for this heads-up Monochrome. Just ordered one myself. Its perfect for my growing Q kit!
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 03-05-2014, 03:46 PM  
Pentax DA* 16-50mm f/2.8 vs. Sigma/Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 17
Views: 3,852
This sums it up best.

I own the Pentax, a close friend of mine owns the Tamron. Both are good lenses, but as Bestzoom mentioned, the color rendering on the Pentax is a tad bit better SOOC. I opted for the Pentax when I bought a lens of this type because I got it well before the MAP went into play and I paid less than $650 for the lens new. At the current price of well over $1000, its hard to see where the Pentax is a better buy than the Sigma or Tamron, which often cost between $500-600. Personally, Im willing to spend an extra 25% of the cost of a 3rd party lens for the extra features such as Quick Shift, superior build, or WR, however, these features dont directly impact the image, so they can be done without. If you can find the Pentax 16-50 *UNDER $749* then I would give it a consideration. Otherwise the Sigma or Tamron would be my choice.
Forum: Pentax Price Watch 03-03-2014, 09:59 AM  
Pentax Lens Discount
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 2
Views: 746
Adorama has (or had) a 30 day price guarantee on their products. If they dropped the price within 30 days they would give you the difference in store credit. Just contact them and they should put a credit on your account. The only issue at the time was that in order to use the credit you had to phone in your next order. A minor inconvenience. This happened when I bought my K-5 two years ago. The price difference then paid for the extended warranty when those came back in stock.
Forum: Pentax Q 02-06-2013, 10:23 AM  
Fotodiox adapter question
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 60
Views: 6,651
This looks like its worth a shot. Ill have to pick some up on my way home from work. Thanks robtcorl!
Forum: Pentax Q 01-29-2013, 01:46 PM  
To UV or Not to UV
Posted By PentaxScott
Replies: 33
Views: 3,186
Im a bit of both. Ive found that when using a Hoya MC UV filter, the image quality loss is negligible under 99% of all shooting conditions when using my K-5 and modern lenses. If a shot in a controlled environment requires absolute maximum detail and sharpness (such as an intent to do heavy cropping in PP, etc) I can simply remove the filter and no harm is done.

With my Q Ive found that while the small sensor works IQ miracles for its size, it does have significant limitations which need to be respected and I try my hardest to avoid any loss in image quality. Because of this, I choose not to use UV filters on my Q lenses. Additionally, since the Q lenses are so tiny and the diameter of the front elements are substantially smaller than full size K-mount lenses, I would imagine a significantly smaller chance to damage the front element of the lens, thus eliminating a large portion of the need for a UV filter.

Hoods however are a different story. If a lens comes with a hood, I use it. If it doesnt, I look to purchase a matching generic for it.
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