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Forum: General Photography 1 Day Ago  
A simpler camera
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 36
Views: 1,055
True, but even camcorders are now replaced by smart phones. As I teach both photography and video, I agree camcorders are easier to use than DSLRs, but DSLRs create better videos because:

a) No motorized zoom function=no ugly zooming in the videos.
b) Less effective AF=more manual focusing without the focus searching in the video.
c) Better optics and low light capability=better bokeh with larger apertures and sensors.

Most photographers never use the video function on their DSLRs and most videographers rarely use the still photo function on their DSLRs, but as much as I like the idea of the Nikon Df, I think it would bother me if my DSLR had no video capability. (I'm a flip phone convertee that can't give up my smart phone. Free light meter apps!!!)
Forum: General Photography 2 Days Ago  
A simpler camera
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 36
Views: 1,055
I agree with you, but it's all about profits and Adam is spot-on. Leica makes, for example, the M10 for $7000+ if you want simplicity, and Nikon Df attempted retro simplicity, but unfortunately the green AUTO mode and default settings is the best you're going to find on everything else or using M mode and disabling the Menu button. Ouch.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 5 Days Ago  
What's up with my lens?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 19
Views: 790
I still think it's a decentered lens. I know many have praised the quality of their Rokinon/Samyang primes, but that has not been my experience. At the extremes, such as wide open at f/2.8, it does not have edge or corner sharpness and there is greater sample variation in quality from lens to lens. At f/5.6-f/8 they are fine, but not at max or min aperture.

The Pentax 14mm is more than double the price of Rokinon/Samyang for various reasons:
a) Pentax field of view: 90 degrees vs. RokSam 94 degrees
b) Pentax 12 elements in 11 groups vs. RokSam 14 elements in 10 groups
c) Pentax 420 grams vs. RokSam 530 grams

But beyond the tech numbers there is also quality control and overall IQ. I think your lens will be fine in the mid-aperture ranges, but noticeably problematic f/2.8-4.5 and probably f/13-22.

---------- Post added 10-15-18 at 04:10 PM ----------



Like a flat brick wall where you can fill the frame from corner to corner.
Forum: Photographic Technique 5 Days Ago  
Identifying a couple of odd filter discs
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 6
Views: 349
If you posted a photo, it would help. If it wasn't so large, it could be for a rear mount mirror reflex telephoto or for a telescope (moon viewing, not the sun), but at 62mm and without a ring, it's hard to say. For a spot light, they would use gels, as the glass could easily break from heat. Where did this come from?
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 6 Days Ago  
What's up with my lens?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 19
Views: 790
Yeah, for your sake I hope I'm wrong, but I'm a bit confused.

The metadata says this was shot with a 15mm Pentax with your K-01. Did you shoot this with a 14mm? And if so, the Rokinon, Samyang, or Pentax 14mm f/2.8? New, the first two are $300 lenses and the Pentax is about $650 new. Your lens may have been only $200 because the previous seller knew about this issue. A decentered lens can be fixed at a price, but at mid-apertures, the decentering would less of an issue.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 6 Days Ago  
What's up with my lens?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 19
Views: 790
Shooting any lens wide open will not give you optimum sharpness across the field, but I do think it's decentered. Try shooting a flat brick wall at f/2.8. Try the same in the day of a city scape at f/2.8. Of course things will improve at f/5.6 or f/8, but if you're trying to shoot stars, you probably don't want too high ISO.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 10-10-2018, 10:55 AM  
New to photography. Help me choose a pentax.
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 59
Views: 1,304
Welcome to the forum! In general you want to find the best lens for your needs, and then a body that will do it justice. However, as an "absolute beginner" that may not stick to it, I would focus on finding a decent body that would be easy to resell if you change your mind or even want to upgrade.

My first choice from your list would be the K3 from Adorama. It's the best camera from the bunch, one of the newest in terms of resale, and Adorama gives you some protection with a warranty which will give you peace of mind buying used. And for $468 you can get a K3 in excellent condition from KEH with a 180 day warranty and free shipping: Pentax K-3 Digital SLR Camera Body, Black {24 M/P} at KEH Camera Store

The other alternative as someone that may want and need to sell their gear if you want 'out' would be something like a Nikon D3400 with an 18-55mm kit lens for $447. The K3 is a MUCH better camera than the entry level D3400, but the Nikon will have a full warranty and be the easiest to sell.

https://www.adorama.com/inkd3400k.html?
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 10-09-2018, 10:57 AM  
Are we really THAT rare?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 5,359
Views: 669,489
Totally agree, more money than sense. Not that Pentax bodies doesn't hold their own, but the main reason I continue to shoot Pentax is because of the lenses.

....and you should have thrown in that you shoot medium format; something Canon didn't offer in either film or digital.
Forum: General Photography 10-08-2018, 08:10 PM  
10,000th post - and a BIG "Thank You" to everyone here!
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 30
Views: 918
....and 4000+ "Likes" is no small milestone either. Kudos and a thank you!!!
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 10-05-2018, 01:24 PM  
I have this itch (for a 645)
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 14
Views: 722
I remember shooting a lot of Kodachrome 25 and 64 ISO back in the day when 400 ISO was considered "fast". Although now, I can't imagine not having the option of shooting digital at least 1600 ISO, I still consider that more of a convenience than a necessity. (Sorry for the double negative there, but that's what happens when you reminisce about reversal film):D

.....and nothing beats the ultra fine grain and resolution of Pan F. It will also really show you the slightest exposure deviations.

PS. Tech Pan R.I.P.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 10-05-2018, 11:26 AM  
What Is Up With K1000 Prices?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 162
Views: 4,106
That's true but self-timers are very helpful if you forgot or don't have a remote shutter release for a long exposure on a tripod.
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 10-05-2018, 01:33 AM  
Help with first flash
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 9
Views: 389
I have no experience with Godox, but the Metz flashes I've used in the past have been very good. The only thing better have been Pentax units because they are weather-sealed.

I think you may regret getting a flash that only tilts (up & down) but does not swivel (left & right). For affordable first flashes that are Pentax compatible, I'd recommend the Yongnuo YN585EX. Hard to beat for price plus features.

Yongnuo YN585EX Speedlite for Pentax Cameras YN585EX/PENTAX B&H

At 1/3 the price of the next best thing, a Metz Mecablitz 44 AF-2, the Yongnuo would be my low priced choice.

Metz mecablitz 44 AF-2 Digital Flash for Pentax MZ 44327PEN B&H
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 10-03-2018, 11:26 AM  
What Is Up With K1000 Prices?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 162
Views: 4,106
The Exell MRB625 is rated at 1.35V and I doubt a zinc air battery vs. mercury oxide makes any difference.

And in practice, my experience with the 1.5V alkaline is fine. If I calibrate it and see if it is off >1/3 EV, then I'll just adjust my ISO accordingly.

I have a sensor that measures shutter speeds and most older SLRs will have a variation of about 1/3 EV anyway.
Cumulatively, that could work against you, depending if it is + or - but unless you're shooting slide film or <160 ISO negs, it's splitting hairs....and if I want to nail my exposures with low ISO or slides, I'll bracket regardless.

BTW: My second camera system started with a Minolta SRT-202 purchased in Japan and grew into four cameras and six lenses before they were all stolen.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 10-03-2018, 10:27 AM  
What Is Up With K1000 Prices?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 162
Views: 4,106
Why is that? I've always found the 625 batteries work fine with any of the SRT Minoltas.

amazon.com: Duracell 625A E625GBP K625A PX625A MR09 1.5V Alkaline Battery FAST USA SHIP: Health & Personal Care?tag=pentaxforums-20&
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 10-03-2018, 09:01 AM  
The real 645!
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 104
Views: 3,495
Yes they are, but not because of the name brand on the lens.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 10-03-2018, 01:05 AM  
Amateur Photographers (UK) Predicts End for Pentax
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 671
Views: 38,702
Traditional MF 66 and 645, typically Hasselblad, Rollei, Contax, Bronica, and Mamiyas were commonly used on tripods in portrait studios or wedding setups. But the Pentax 645 was designed more to be handheld in the field.

And SR is designed to reduce bigger and slower movement caused by an unsteady hand; not the microvibrations from mirror slap.
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 10-02-2018, 10:58 AM  
The real 645!
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 104
Views: 3,495
True.


True.


Not so sure that A+B here equals C. Fujifilm has invested more in R&D to come out with their recent line of new products. There is also a greater demand for their current system offering vs. Pentax accepting legacy lenses.


Made in Japan, China, or Vietnam can be one of many cause and effect reasons. And is the assumption that Nikon or Canon lenses are more expensive than Pentax?

All three 18-55mm kit zooms are just under $200.

How does one really compare, for example, just 50mm primes?
Pentax DA 50mm f/1.7 $117
vs.
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM $125
vs.
Nikon AF-S 50mm f/1.8G $217

I think it really comes down to supply & demand. Canon has the volume but marketing expenses. Nikon has less of both, but still significantly higher than Pentax. Is the Pentax the cheapest because of the name, or because of the build quality and materials (i.e. AF on the plastic fantastics), location of manufacture, and low marketing expenses?

Certainly some names (Zeiss, Schneider, Yongnuo) command prices at the extremes in part of because of the brand, but the cost of manufacture and supply/demand are bigger factors. And then you have anomalies like Sigma that is only recently considered a quality brand, but their prices has more to do with quality and cost of manufacture and not brand name.
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 10-01-2018, 10:39 AM  
I have this itch (for a 645)
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 14
Views: 722
Film? Normally I would opt for either Ilford HP5+ or Kodak Tri-X for that traditional look, but with a new camera, I think it's more telling to use a lower ISO to better see any anomalies with the exposures due to idiosyncracies of the meter, shutter, or aperture. Hard to beat the price on Arista EDU Ultra 100 or for a bit more the ultra fine Ilford Pan F 50.

I find Ilford XP2+ hard to beat for exposure latitude and beautiful scan quality if you don't mind sending it to a lab for C41 processing.

I have not had the same battery holder problem with my 645N that I have had with my 645, but my 645 is at least 13 years older than the N, so perhaps age is the main benefit on the N battery holder.
Forum: Photographic Technique 09-28-2018, 11:01 AM  
Pentax in the Movies
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 321
Views: 89,451
Based on the PC sync location, the lens finish, and the top of the camera, that looks like a Topcon IC-1 from the mid-70's. What's the era of the story in this movie??? I'm pretty sure the end of the film is around 1966, so someone in the Art Department didn't do their homework.
Forum: General Photography 09-26-2018, 09:20 PM  
$2 Tripod
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 10
Views: 613
That's awesome, but beware.

True story: I had a $1500 600mm telephoto mounted onto an $800 SLR. I am using a $200 monopod with a really cheap quick release head. See where this is going? The quick release failed (or I failed to respect the weight it couldn't support) and it all fell from shoulder height onto pavement, splitting the camera in two (Minolta Maxxum 9000) and shattering a $100 UV filter (82mm?).

Beware the weakest link.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 09-26-2018, 12:57 PM  
Looking for a liquid film dev. with results like D-76?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 105
Views: 2,176
Sorry, I have found there is no substitute to experience and taking notes. There are just too many variables from the film age and stock to the developer type, temp, dilution, age, agitation method, water pH, etc; not to mention your subjective aesthetic response and the subject matter and lighting. Also what paper will this be printed on, using what paper developer, or will it be scanned, and if so what are the variables there?

Now that I've been a photography teacher for more years than I was a photographer, I realize that simple answers can and should be followed by dozens of questions. The more I teach, the more I realize how much I do not know and how much more I have to learn, and the best teacher is still a student at heart.

I know that's not the recommendation you wanted from me.....but hopefully others will have other suggestions that may "click" with you.
Forum: General Photography 09-26-2018, 12:45 PM  
Printing and displaying photographs
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 12
Views: 520
At least once a year, I make 2-3 large format prints anywhere from 30x30" to 36x44". This year I made my first canvas print and stretched it onto a wood frame. Also once a year, I make a photo book. It's not cheap, but those images are looked at for years to come and writing descriptive and detailed captions helps put the image in context.

You're right, viewing an image on a monitor doesn't have the same aesthetic as print, and the bigger, the better.

Although I do share images via FB or Instagram etc, if the photo is a true "keeper", I will print them out as a 5x8" or 6x9" and "share" them via snail mail.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 09-26-2018, 12:29 PM  
Looking for a liquid film dev. with results like D-76?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 105
Views: 2,176
So if I understand, a gray card with Zones 1 thru 10. Zone 1 is black with no detail and Zone 10 is paper white with no detail. Look at this link and scroll down to the "Meter Standard Value" image.

Zone System And Metering | Alan Ross Photography
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 09-26-2018, 11:44 AM  
Looking for a liquid film dev. with results like D-76?
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 105
Views: 2,176
Are you familiar with Ansel Adams' Zone System? It specifically and technically addresses exposure and development times based on your key gray scale target and desired contrast. That's a gross simplification, but the Zone System has become the default answer for B&W wizards for decades.
Forum: General Photography 09-26-2018, 10:35 AM  
Recommendations for landscape photography locations West Denver area
Posted By Alex645
Replies: 11
Views: 453
Traffic and distances will consume a lot of your time. Based on my experience in a similar situation, I would recommend spending the entire day and driving up Mt. Evans on the 28th. Some nice mountain lakes to stop at on the way up with bountiful wildlife and if you're lucky, some thunderstorms for some cool long exposure lightning shots.
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