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Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 08-17-2014, 08:52 PM  
Are all third party zooms soft at 2.8?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 45
Views: 3,398
Sigma DC 17-50 f/2.8 EX HSM is pretty sharp at 2.8.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 08-01-2014, 09:18 AM  
DA 40mm Limited
Posted By olenl
Replies: 10
Views: 920
I just bought first 49mm lens cap I've found on BH and it works nicely. The way 40mm is built you are unlikely to accidentally touch the front lens so the hood is not neccessary imho. I also got one for 15mm and it also works but you need to retract the hood to put it on.

I also got a new HD 21mm and it has finally the hood and cap that does not require screwing it in like 15mm's cap does ... I wish they made these for all other limiteds as well (or was this design always like that just for 21mm?)
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 07-31-2014, 06:44 AM  
Sigma or not so sigmatic
Posted By olenl
Replies: 24
Views: 1,829
I kinda like my Sigma DC 17-50mm 1:2.8 EX HSM. It's a new edition for Pentax with stripped OS feature.

Sharp all over the frame at 17mm, great wide open.

Only downside is the size of course .. but Pentax equivalents are similar in this regard and much more expensive.

Also I did some shots with sun in them and it's not as bad as I expected it to be.

Note though that I haven't had too much experience with it... maybe there are problems I haven't noticed yet.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-23-2013, 10:36 PM  
replacement for kit lens
Posted By olenl
Replies: 16
Views: 1,452
I'd recommend Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX. Both cheaper and better than 16-50. Only drawback is the lack of WR.
Sure it does not have quick fix but it does not seem to hunt so it's generally not needed.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 04-15-2013, 03:27 AM  
D FA Macro 100 / Tamron 90 Macro: Good for events?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 22
Views: 2,360
Since it has QuickShift, you can manually pre-focus before half-pushing the shutter button, then it won't whiz but will quickly fine-focus and shoot (at least on my camera).
You can't do that with Tamron 90 since you must switch 2 switches to go from AF to MF and back.
Focus limiter won't help much, it will still whiz but not as far as without limiter.
I also have both lenses, I bought DFA 100 WR recently because I was not satisfied with my Tamron 90. Did not regret that in the slightest, trying to sell Tamron now.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 04-13-2013, 10:41 PM  
Which macro?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 23
Views: 2,214
15mm is not that great, it produces extremely soft corners unless you use silly aperture like f/12 and focus manually.

If corners are not important though then it's ok i guess.
If I could I'd trade my 15mm limited for 21mm limited just in case it's any better...
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 04-13-2013, 10:32 PM  
D FA Macro 100 / Tamron 90 Macro: Good for events?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 22
Views: 2,360
I find DFA 100's bokeh much better than tamron's and it's much more compact in both dimensions.

In addition, the macro capability on DFA 100 allows to shoot using built-in or hotshoe-mounted flash in 1:1 mode while Tamron requires the light to come from direction impossible from hot shoe (so you'll need to hold the flash with another hand or something like that), since the tamron's long front lens bezel blocks the light so you see huge area shadowed when shooting 1:1. The similar effect is seen on DFA 100 only when using max magnification with Raynox 150 mounted on lens.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-25-2013, 11:33 AM  
Rectilinear vs Fisheye
Posted By olenl
Replies: 39
Views: 9,728
of course you can defish perfectly. you can even change center of a frame to any point you want and select any rectilinear optical length you want.

if course you will only see part of the frame that you'd see with that length rectilinear lens.

the above photo is NOT defished. on defished photo, straight lines bent on fisheye look straight, and we don't see that here.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-15-2013, 10:31 PM  
Best macro 50mm or 90/100mm or 70-200
Posted By olenl
Replies: 31
Views: 3,093
I dislike Tamron 90 because its diameter or long front element bezel prevents the use of built in or hot shoe mounted flash for macro shots. Basically it covers the direct path between the flash and the thing you're shooting at 1:1 - half of the shot ends up in the shadow. So you have to use some kind of flash on a tripod via extension cord or hold it with your other hand of something like that, which complicates things to the point its not worth doing at all.

With 100mm WR however I have no such problems - the whole frame is covered with built-in flash's light at 1:1.

For the instruments however I think 50mm or less is more appropriate since you won't need macro on 90-100mm if you go far enough for the instrument to fit in the frame. Unless it's harmonica or something like that of course.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-15-2013, 08:24 AM  
thinking of replacing my Tamron 90mm Macro with Pentax D FA 100mm/WR...
Posted By olenl
Replies: 5
Views: 1,520
So I just got the DFA 100mm WR lens and so far it's everyting I expected it to be. It is also much smaller than Tamron which is a huge plus for me.

Sure it also has retracted front element but it is WAY less deep than Tamron. I can actually shoot 1:1 macro using built-in flash, or of course any hot shoe flash, so I don't need to use extra hand to hold the flash, which is the only way to do it with Tamron (using either wireless mode or extension cord). It's probably not only because of the depth of the front element but also because of the width of the lens which is smaller on Pentax (49mm filter vs 58mm).

The bright spots bokeh in macro (from flash for example) don't look exactly perfect but better than Tamron's "begels" in my opinion.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-28-2012, 10:28 PM  
Is the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 much better than the Pentax DA 16-45mm f/4 ?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 9
Views: 2,143
What about flare resistance? I also wanted to buy this lens but when I saw flare test images in the comparison on this site I reconsidered... Am I overreacting? My problem is that even when the sun is not in the frame it still damages the shots... maybe the proper hood can help though?
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-23-2012, 04:04 AM  
thinking of replacing my Tamron 90mm Macro with Pentax D FA 100mm/WR...
Posted By olenl
Replies: 5
Views: 1,520
I wonder if it's worth it, maybe someone used both lenses extensively to be able to comment?

I currently have Tamron 90mm. While I like what it does in non macro situations (pretty sharp all over at narrow aperture), in macro it produces those weird bagel like bokeh which annoys me greatly.

Another thing I find very annoying is that it required two actions to switch between AF and MF - you need both on lens switch and then on the body switch to toggle MF.

Also the front 'tube' is so long that you can't use flash on the shoe while having 1:1 magnification because light is blocked by the this built-in 'hood'.

So I am thinking to buy 100mm WR for Quick Shift and hopefully better macro pictures.

Will I get better non macro pictures with 100mm WR and maybe 100 WR has some macro issues as well?

Also, is 100mm WR better wide open?

Also what is the quality situation with 100mm WR? I will be buying online without the ability to check, plus it would be super hard to replace it if I get defective lens (no Pentax seller or representative anywhere within 1000 km). Is it worth the risk of running into one?
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 03-09-2012, 09:54 PM  
Sigma, Pentax or Samyang?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 20
Views: 3,955
The proper fisheyes have 180 degrees diagonal view angle. In rectilinear projection, it is impossible to achieve this view angle so no matter what the rectilinear focal length is, it's always not as wide as fisheye.

Also, extreme wide rectilinear lenses produce unpleasant (for my liking) distortion effects near borders, where objects are stretched along radial direction and thus look unproportional. I think 12mm (cropped) is more than enough for wide angle, in fact even 15mm seems too wide for me, but maybe it's just me...

Anyway, about the 10-17 and 8mm lenses. As I said in another thread, the 8mm is a one trick pony - it's only good if you want to shoot the surroundings without focusing on particular object - the resulting shots are sharp across the frame, and the projection is such that no part of the frame has significantly changed proportions of objects. Also note that 8mm has pretty distant minimum focusing distance which augments the fact that it's not as good as Pentax 10-17 if you want to put an accent on some particular object.

Pentax 10-17mm is more traditional projection fisheye - it compresses the objects near frame borders (along radial direction) unlike rectilinear projection that stretches them. This means that central objects are much more detailed than objects closer to the borders. It also has very close minimum focusing distance so you can make artistic shots. Also the zooming ability allows to get shots that look more like rectilinear wide angle at 17mm end which makes it more versatile.

So, if you know you want Samyang 8mm (e.g. you need it to get detailed surrounding shots ONLY), get it. If not, you are more likely to prefer Pentax 10-17mm instead, unless you prefer 8mm's projection.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 02-29-2012, 02:10 AM  
How many Megapixels
Posted By olenl
Replies: 18
Views: 2,363
imho it's already the limiting factor.

Most lenses look soft nowadays - they have best resolution in the center but as you move away, it goes way down and there are all sorts of defects like chromatic aberrations which would not be visible if the pixels were larger.

IMO they just can't make good enough lenses for current APS/C sensors, so the industry should refocus to increase lenses quality (for reasonable price) instead of cramping up the megapixels.

The reason FF and MF is good is exactly this - they got huge sensors with small pixel density, and their lenses, even with current level of technology, can deliver resolution enough to make images look sharp on pixel level. Cropped format however is doomed to be soft and chromatically aberrated because all it has is useless pixels and cheap lenses that can't use them.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 02-29-2012, 01:54 AM  
What's the K5 replacement going to offer?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 44
Views: 9,102
I think from what we know from the K-5 history, it's not worth it to buy the Pentax camera right after it's out.


1. inflated price. Current K-5 price is WAY below what it was after the issue.

2. huge number of QC issues - buttons falling out, sensor stains, focus problems (maybe not QC though)

3. a number of technical issues - mirror flops come to mind.

Currently however, most of those issues SEEM to have been resolved - provided that you buy recently manufactured camera.

So I don't know about you but I am not going to buy the next camera earlier than after a year or two of its production.

what for?

at 16 MP, even the top of the line DA* 300mm looks too soft (according to photozone, its resolution figures on K-5 are way below DA40 or even the cheapo DA 35 f/2.4 AL, and their test images do look very soft even in focus areas).

24MP FF would be nice though.
Forum: Pentax K-5 02-29-2012, 01:42 AM  
Shutter count for new K5
Posted By olenl
Replies: 57
Views: 8,648
maybe that was a dead pixel? there is some kind of allowed amount of them which is not considered a defect.

there is a menu command somewhere, 'map pixels' or something like that - it removes those dead pixels so they dont' appear on the shots any longer.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-24-2012, 09:54 PM  
DA*300mm flexibility?
Posted By olenl
Replies: 15
Views: 3,186
Did anyone try Raynox with this lens?
Forum: Pentax K-5 02-24-2012, 09:29 AM  
Shutter count for new K5
Posted By olenl
Replies: 57
Views: 8,648
next time check the camera's serial number (it's visible on a sticker on the box - first 7 of 13 digit number). Current serial is 425*****. Just got mine with such serial, the exif analisys tool on this site says it's been made in December 2011 and has about zero activations (plus the number of shots I made myself) which is pretty nice, since the various problems found earlier (sensor spots, mirror flop, etc) are most probably fixed in the recent manufacturing process.

I believe the Body-only is somewhat safer option since Kits are more likely to be used for demonstration purposes in retail outlets.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-24-2012, 09:03 AM  
Tamron 90mm vs Pentax D-FA 100mm WR Macro
Posted By olenl
Replies: 27
Views: 7,195
And by the way, I have seen an older version of Pentax 100mm Macro lens in the local store for about $530 and wondering if I should get it... It has no WR but the optical scheme is probably the same... Is it worth extra $270 to go for WR version instead? That's about what it will cost me here. Are there any good comparisons between the two?
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-24-2012, 09:00 AM  
Tamron 90mm vs Pentax D-FA 100mm WR Macro
Posted By olenl
Replies: 27
Views: 7,195
I wonder if the really deep lens placement on Tamron is an issue when using lens filters like Reynox DCR150?

Does it really matter how far the Reynox is placed from the front lens element? Does it affect the maximum magnification or quality of the images?

Also, does DCR150 work well with Pentax 100mm WR? I've found some images from Tamron 90 with this addon but not from Pentax 100mm WR...
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 02-24-2012, 08:49 AM  
Macro Lenses
Posted By olenl
Replies: 18
Views: 2,358
They used to make 105mm Macro for Pentax, but recently discontinued it and the new version of 105mm has no Pentax version.

So I assume they sold too few 105mm Pentax lenses.

The reason for this is that there are already 2 competitors for this lens - Pentax 100mm WR that everybody loves and Tamron 90mm which is pretty cheap and perhaps a little better than Sigma 105mm Macro was.

But if they made 150mm and 180mm macro for Pentax, those lenses would NOT have ANY competitors in Pentax mount. I bet they would have sold TONS of those lenses.

Someone needs to tell them that...
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 02-18-2012, 04:12 AM  
New Sigma 150mm macro might/will/won't??? come in K-mount
Posted By olenl
Replies: 145
Views: 35,760
Now in addition to 'yet' unavailable 150mm macro, B&H has 180mm macro listed for Pentax, although like with 150mm it says 'new item, not available yet'.

I wonder if it will stay like that forever like 150mm did...

Sigma 180mm f/2.8 APO Macro EX DG OS HSM Lens (for Pentax) B&H

I wonder if those lenses are only made in very limited quantities and then Sigma just cuts them off for some weird reason... Like the old 180mm macro that apparently exists for K mount but you can't find it anywhere except for rare second hand deals... maybe sigma does not want to help the competitor with their optics? then why make them in K mount at all? or they don't sell? then how come they are not listed anywhere at all?
Forum: Pentax Full Frame 02-16-2012, 01:10 PM  
Pentax Full Frame Dream Crushed Today
Posted By olenl
Replies: 946
Views: 102,829
isn't DA supposed to be designed specifically for cropped sensors?
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 02-15-2012, 04:40 AM  
Shutter speed in P-TTL mode
Posted By olenl
Replies: 35
Views: 3,933
M is a camera mode, flash is set to P-TTL (that's on my Metz 58af-1, I dont' know how is it called on Pentax flash) and it's definitely NOT constant. The same goes for built-in flash (I think it is always in PTTL mode).

Does 360FGZ not allow to use PTTL when camera is in M mode?
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 02-15-2012, 04:09 AM  
Shutter speed in P-TTL mode
Posted By olenl
Replies: 35
Views: 3,933
Why don't you just use M mode? You select everything and the flash fires as much as needed to make it work.

I think the automatic selection uses 1/focal length for some reason, although I never get sharp images at this setting - maybe my SR is faulty or something.
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