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Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 03-21-2020, 06:59 AM  
Confession game: how many lenses do you have? Why do you keep them? Which was let go?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 86
Views: 2,907
I am in the same situation here in USA, Delaware with most everything closed due to Covid-19. So here is my assessment of what I have:

* Cameras: K-5 and K-3
* F series lens: 28 f2.8
* FA series: 50 f1.7
* DFA Series: 100 Macro WR
* DA Limited: SMC 15, 21, 35 macro, 70; HD 40
* DA* 200 and 300
* DA zooms 17-70 (dead SDM) 16-85 (my most used lens) HD 55-300 (no longer used) 55-300 PLM (second most used)
* 1.4X Teleconverter
Realistically I don't get to use them all. There some I should sell and pare down my collection even though all (except the 17-70) are great lenses in perfect condition. I would like to add either a DA12-24 zoom or the DA* 11-18 if I can afford to splurge, but I would need to clear out some of what I have to get one of these.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 03-16-2020, 05:45 AM  
16-85 AF problem
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 11
Views: 694
Very similar situation here on the east coast in Delaware. The restriction for gatherings is no more than 50 persons and everyone needs to be at least 6 feet apart from one another. I am also older (67 years old) with Parkinson's disease so I need to exercise but cannot go to any gym. Most are closed anyway.
Back to the original thread question. My 16-85 which I bought used, like new from KEH works flawlessly on both my K-5 and K-3 bodies. As far as I know there are no notable widespread autofocus issues with this lens however any lens can have an individual problem issue that is not indicative of a widespread issue with the lens, such as SDM failures. I bought my 16-85 for its reputation for reliable autofocus to replace my DA 17-70 on which the SDM autofocus died completely.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 02-23-2020, 03:23 PM  
LightRoom replacement for Mac
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 16
Views: 1,057
I agree, I am using photos on my 11 year old MacBook pro using Affinity photo as a plug in for more advanced editing if needed. The MacBook pro is on Mac OS High Sierra. I am also using the same combo of photos and Affinity photo on my iMac which is on Mac OS Catalina.
I find this combination meets all of my needs. Affinity photo is a reasonably priced download from the App store and it will be updated for free as newer versions of it come out.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-22-2020, 11:58 AM  
Why haven't Pentax made more Plm lens ?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 25
Views: 1,317
Probably the only current Pentax lens that I could see being updated to PLM would be the DA 17-70 which has its share of SDM autofocus issues. Mine is stuck with a dead SDM motor. I have both the DA 16-85 and the 55-300 PLM and both have the best autofocus performance of all of my lenses which include DA* 200 & 300 and DA limiteds. The 16-85 does not need any autofocus update. The DC motor is fast and reliable. I believe the same applies to the 18-135 as well.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-13-2020, 06:21 AM  
18-135WR or 17-70 f/4?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 13
Views: 652
The mention of possible reduced WR is in the In depth review of the DA 17-70 that is available in this forum. The in depth review is a comparison of the DA 17-70 to two earlier Sigma versions of their 17-70.
As for me, I bought my DA 17-70 new in 2009 and used it on my K10D, K-5 and K-3 bodies. I had autofocus issues with this lens on all three cameras. When it was new, the autofocus was reliable and fast from 17 up to about 50. From 50 to 70, it was hit or miss where it periodically hunted and failed to lock focus. This was also observed in the in depth review. Around 2014, I started having issues getting the autofocus working on startup, especially if the lens was not used for a week or more. The SDM finally died about late 2015 and since then the lens was not used. in 2016 I looked to either repair it, get the 18-135 or look for a good used 16-85. I ended up getting a like new used 16-85 and am very happy with this lens.
My suggestion to the OP is to proceed with caution in purchasing the 17-70 due to the prevalence of SDM issues. Reading the reviews on this forum and at B&H website is suggested. The 18-135 and 16-85 both use DC motors instead of SDM. Based on my experience with my 16-85, I have zero issues with its autofocus performance.
One other concern with the 17-70 is the focus has a very short focus range. Meaning if the autofocus fails, it is very difficult to use as manual focus lens.
If I knew that repairing my 17-70 would give an improved and more reliable autofocus motor, I would get it fixed, but still, I prefer the 16-85. It is sharper, has a wider zoom range and is WR which more than offsets the constant aperture advantage of the 17-70
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 01-30-2020, 05:28 AM  
DA 55-300mm F4.5-6.3 ED PLM Exposure issue ?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 18
Views: 906
Looking at your EXIF data the under exposed picture is a shutter speed of 1/15 sec and the better exposed picture is 1/4 sec. That could account for the under exposure of the picture at 1/15 sec with everything else being the same. I typically shoot my PLM (I also have K-3 with firmware 1.40) at higher ISO unless in very good lighting conditions. It may be possible you were shooting at the limits of ISO and aperture for the lighting conditions if the scene.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 01-27-2020, 07:07 AM  
Do not know what to think on this one. Quite disturbing RE; Ricoh
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 57
Views: 3,726
I changed the focus screen in my K-5 to the one that has the divided scale in thirds. The screen comes with instructions and is easy to change. The most difficult part is just making sure you don't get any dust on it while handling it. Since you can get inexpensively in 4 different versions new, there is no need to look for a used one.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 01-25-2020, 07:03 PM  
Listen to this SDM Squeak - what should I do?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 21
Views: 944
My DA*200 (10 years old, pre 2012) and DA*300 (1 year old) both make a slight squeak at the moment when they lock focus. They both did it even when new and have not gotten worse over the years so I assume it is normal. I was concerned when I noticed it in the DA*200 but when I added a new DA* 300 and noticed the SDM sounded the same in both lenses I concluded it was not a problem issue. Both are working fine.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-24-2020, 01:57 PM  
Advice on best 35mm APS-C equivalent (K-70)?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 31
Views: 1,495
I see your location is NYC (I used to live there) you should stop by B&H or Adorama and check the DA 21 Limited in person. As so many others have posted it is a great lens, small and unobtrusive. It is my go to lens whenever I travel up to NYC to visit my son. I have no problem at all with the f3.2 aperture.
Forum: Photographic Industry and Professionals 01-19-2020, 06:49 AM  
DPReview : The Most Important Pentax Cameras Of All Time
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 58
Views: 3,970
Agree. I also liked the video. They were spot on with their choices.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-15-2020, 03:51 PM  
It's Pentax week on DPReview
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 64
Views: 3,837
Thanks for posting this review. It looks like a good review overall, along with some beautiful background scenery. I will be looking to get either this lens of the 12-24 sometime later this year. I hope at some time we will get a side by side (or head to head) comparison of this lens to the 12-24. Certainly the * build and DC autofocus are huge advantages for me and probably would justify the cost difference unless the 12-24 comes down in price or is released as a refresh with WR and DC. I hope to head up to B&H and handle both lenses and that could help me decide which would be a better fit for me.
Forum: General Photography 01-06-2020, 12:54 PM  
Olympus Says Earth’s Rotation Limits Image Stabilization to 6.5 Stops Max
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 63
Views: 1,760
What you saw was DBS or Deep Brain Stimulation. It involves implanting an electrode in the brain and a controller, similar to a pacemaker in the chest. The two are connected by a wire that is implanted under the skin in the neck. I do not feel I am ready to go for this invasive surgery now. I am controlling my tremors with medications. Hopefully, a less invasive alternative will be invented. As far as photography, I find myself boosting up the ISO so I can shoot with faster shutter speeds and my chosen aperture setting. This helps, especially with my largest lens which is the DA* 300 with or without the 1.4 TC. So far I am doing OK with handheld shots with this lens mounted on my K-3. I will be interested in a potential upgrade if the new APS-C replacement shows significantly better high ISO performance than the K-3 or even the KP.
Forum: General Photography 01-06-2020, 12:08 PM  
Olympus Says Earth’s Rotation Limits Image Stabilization to 6.5 Stops Max
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 63
Views: 1,760
My unsteadiness also, I will get very interested if they can cure, or compensate for Parkinsons disease
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 12-27-2019, 11:41 AM  
How much play on DA limited lens barrel is acceptable?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 19
Views: 1,006
I have SMC DA 15, 21, 35 macro and 70 Limiteds and the HD 40 Limited. There is varying degrees of inner barrel wobble with my copies. The 15, 21 and 40 have a very slight inner wobble and the 70 has a more significant wobble. The 35 macro is tight and has no wobble. It would seem that some wobble is characteristic of these lenses. None of mine, including the 70 is as bad as yours. I tried wobbling the inner barrel of the 70 while looking through the viewfinder and there was no effect. The lens does take beautiful pictures so the wobble probably is not a serious problem with mine.
What is surprising is that there is any wobble with these more expensive lenses. My two plastic zooms; DA 16-85 and 55-300 PLM have absolutely no inner barrel wobble, even when fully extended. If they can be built with no wobble, why can't the more expensive limiteds?
Forum: Pentax K-1 12-10-2019, 06:57 AM  
Are Pentax K-1 (& K5/K3) Cameras Now "Disposable"?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 50
Views: 2,138
So True and very well said. Actually I think compared to almost every other electronic device or appliance we have in our homes, Pentax cameras such as the K-5, K-3 and K-1 noted in this thread are less disposable than most electronic items. I have a K-5 and a K-3 and use both with a good assortment of Pentax lenses both new and older. My K-5 is now 9 years old, still works great and looks like new. More than likely, if I had a problem issue with it, I would look first to getting it repaired. I cannot say the same for any other electrical devices or appliances I own that I have had for that many years or even less years old. That includes almost everything else from plasma TV's, microwave ovens, refrigerators, lawn mowers, computers, etc. You see my point here. About the only other 9 year old item in use that I would repair rather than replace when a fix is needed is my 2009 Honda CR-V.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-09-2019, 11:57 AM  
HD DA 55-300mm F4.5-6.3 WR PLM and Teleconverters
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 18
Views: 907
I have the 55-300 PLM, and the DA*300 and the 1.4 TC. I have tried the TC on both lenses. The TC works fine with the PLM however I do not think I get any better results than I get by simply cropping images of the PLM without the TC. I have a K-3 and perhaps with a newer camera such as the K-P I could get better results at higher ISO settings. I do not usually shoot higher than 800 ISO. Autofocus with the PLM does not seem to be adversely affected with the TC. I do feel I get better results with the TC on the DA*300 since the maximum aperture with the TC is f5.6 rather than f8.0 with the PLM. For birding outings my kit is the PLM for 55-300 and the DA* 300 with or without TC for 300 and 420mm
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 10-20-2019, 07:00 AM  
BIF Autofocus (K-70 vs KP vs K-New)
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 16
Views: 1,308
It looks like I missed it in my previous post. My camera is a K-3. I have the 1.4 TC and do not feel it adds any benefit with the PLM, the TC does not affect autofocus but it does impact IQ. I prefer to use the TC with the DA* 300 where it can function better in lower light conditions.
Actually I zoom the PLM up to only 280 mm where it is still f5.6 and get good results with that. on the zoom scale that is about on the single digit 0 on the 300.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 10-20-2019, 05:12 AM  
BIF Autofocus (K-70 vs KP vs K-New)
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 16
Views: 1,308
I have the 55-300 PLM and it can do very well with birds in flight. I set my focus point to center only and center the bird in the viewfinder. That prevents the autofocus from locking on anything in background. This also works well with my DA* 300 but that lens cannot focus as fast as the PLM.
Forum: Pentax Forums Giveaways 10-16-2019, 05:52 PM  
PentaxForums 100 Year Giveaway - October - General Raffle Entry Thread
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 458
Views: 12,695
I'm in!
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-16-2019, 07:21 AM  
Favorite lens for shooting food at a restaurant
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 35
Views: 1,661
This also would be my choice on my K-3.
Forum: General Photography 10-16-2019, 05:47 AM  
What's Been Your Experience with KEH.com Lately? Mine... not so good
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 43
Views: 1,636
This is definitely not encouraging as far as buying from KEH again. At this point I have acquired most, if not all of the lenses and photographic equipment that I could want. My purchases have become few and fewer over the last three years. This makes it more likely that I would save up and buy new any future wants such as a wide angle zoom and get it from Adorama or B&H. KEH may be a good choice for vintage equipment but for modern equipment, I would just spring for new.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 10-16-2019, 05:41 AM  
How do you carry for street photography?
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 69
Views: 6,317
I just returned from a trip to France where I used my Domke FX 5B bag. As you stated, its biggest downside is that full length velcro on the outer flap. If Domke would change this to either a magnetic closure or a buckle it would make this bag perfect in my opinion. The bag has secure high quality zippers on the inside but the noisiest strip of velcro on the outside. It became very noticeable at times in quieter places in France leaving me wishing I brought my Domke F-803 instead which has no velcro. This is not at all me saying that do not like my F5XB, I do, but it would be better without the velcro.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-16-2019, 05:14 AM  
Improvements to the DA limited primes
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 64
Views: 2,563
After reading all of these posts and considering my own experiences with my limiteds ( 15, 21, 35, 70 SMC primes & HD 40 prime) I will add my thoughts:
1. I agree completely these lenses have a tendency to develop inner barrel wobble over time. This, even if they are handled carefully. On my limiteds it varies from slight on the 15 and 35 to significant on the 70. If Pentax/Ricoh can engineer lenses such as the DA 16-85 and 55-300 PLM with no inner barrel wobble, they should also be able to do this with the limiteds with their more robust metal construction and short extension metal inner barrels.
2. I would love to see these lenses made weather resistant. This could also help with the inner barrel wobble issues I and others have noted.
3. Finally, I agree that the 70 should have a closer focus ability, if it can be done without increasing the inner barrel wobble that seems to be an issue with this particular lens.
Aside from these, I very much like these lenses just the way they are right now. They could use some minor upgrades for sure but no significant overhaul of them.
Forum: General Photography 10-13-2019, 06:40 AM  
What's Been Your Experience with KEH.com Lately? Mine... not so good
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 43
Views: 1,636
I bought the following lenses from KEH between 2013 and 2017: DA 21 Limited, FA 50 f1.7 and DA 16-85. All three were graded as LN- and all of them work well and look new. So, my experience has been very positive. Since I have not bought anything from them, however, in the last two years, I cannot say if they have gone downhill in the last two years or not. I will be monitoring this thread to see what others have to say.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-13-2019, 06:20 AM  
A simple question with possibly no answer.
Posted By jddwoods
Replies: 32
Views: 1,501
If you already have the 55-300 PLM you will gain nothing from getting the 50-200. As others have stated you would do better upgrading the 18-55 to either the 16-85 or the 18-135. Also you could keep the 18-55 and add a wide-angle zoom to your kit. I already have the 16-85 and the 55-300 PLM and this is a great combo. I am considering adding a wider angle zoom and am considering the fisheye, the 12-24 or the DA* 11-18. Depending on funds I will head up to B&H and Adorama and have a hands on look at all three.
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