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Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-04-2011, 03:56 PM  
Teleconverter Choices?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 3
Views: 1,788
I don't see a good compilation of this in the lens database, and B&H/Adorama come up surprisingly empty when it comes to K-mount teleconverters.

I'm going to be taking a nice, long, much-needed vacation soon with family, and one of the objectives is bird watching. I'm thinking about picking up the DA* 300mm for the job, but would like a bit more reach if possible.

Since all of this will be in broad daylight, the loss of a stop or two is fine by me, but optical quality is pretty darned important, as is SDM compatibility with the DA*'s.

What are my choices in this regard, and what are your experiences with the different teleconverters?
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 06-19-2010, 07:40 PM  
Second SDM failure for DA*16-50mm lens
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 19
Views: 6,050
lawjbm: I feel you, just had my DA* 50-135 SDM fail today outright. It's been making slight, disturbing squeaking sounds while focusing for the last little while, but now it's plain kaput.

Very frustrating that Pentax denies the problem even exists, much less address it.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 01-25-2010, 12:35 AM  
"Best in Class" for 16-50mm?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 31
Views: 7,069
I was an unbeliever in SDM problems. But just in the last month or so my roommate's 16-50 has literally fallen apart (in warranty thankfully), where the rear element fell *into* the lens body and the whole thing jammed up.

And then my 50-135 started making terrible squeaking sounds.

All in all very disappointed in SDM quality.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 01-22-2010, 02:11 PM  
Why I want a FF dSLR
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 44
Views: 7,162
Here in the Northwest we have long winters with very short days - it's entirely dark out just about every day when I leave work, so in the winters I shoot a *lot* of night photos.

A crop sensor just doesn't cut it. My K-7 is relatively good up to ISO 800 (some visible noise, but doesn't really detract from the picture), but is absolutely horrendous at 1600-3200. Even at f/1.4 it's hard to get a shutter speed good enough to get clear pictures. I would *kill* for a Pentax camera that has decent ISO 3200 performance.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-22-2010, 01:54 PM  
DA*16-50, Tamron 17-50 2.8, or Sigma 18-50 2.8 for Weddings
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 15
Views: 7,124
I have the Tamron 17-50 - no regrets, awesome performance and build for the price, but it is soft wide open, and quite loud because of screw drive - and lacks full-time manual.

If you are willing to take the risk on the SDM, the 16-50 is a superior lens in just about every way.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 01-10-2010, 04:34 AM  
Squeaky SDM?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 11
Views: 2,525
Hey all,

I have a DA* 50-135 that has started squeaking when autofocusing - particularly at the "ends" of the focus (i.e., when the focus wheel stops). Some quick googling makes me worried that this is a precursor to SDM failure.

Is this sort of noisy squeaking covered under Pentax warranty? I'd like to get this fixed since it *is* annoying, but more because I really don't want to be stuck with dead SDM the moment this thing gets out of warranty (I have about 7-8 months left).
Forum: Photographic Technique 12-10-2009, 02:56 PM  
Taking photos of People in public etiquette
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 78
Views: 19,178
Here's my personal take on this, and my understanding of the law:

- The model release is never required. It is, however, a good idea. If you release a photo publicly you open yourself to potential defamation suits by the people in them (they don't like how they are portrayed, etc). A release will mitigate this risk. Generally speaking if the person is not identifiable they can't reasonably sue you.

My personal rules:

- If I don't mind posing, I will ask first.
- If I do mind posing, I will take first and ask after - and delete if requested.
- If the person is not identifiable, or just part of a crowd and not the subject(s) of a picture, I do not ask.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 12-10-2009, 09:54 AM  
Interesting head to head reviews K-x and Sony 550
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 15
Views: 8,000
Fanboy much guys? It's not the end of the world, but the lack of AF indicator in the viewfinder *is* a major oversight and an important feature that many photographers DO use.

Instead of going "pfft, you don't need it anyways", maybe we should own up to the fact that Pentax dropped a major feature that many people have come to expect from a DSLR. Maybe then Pentax will be competitive the next time around.

Also, coming from film experience, do you know just *how* small modern viewfinders are? It's entirely likely when doing small subject photography to have the wrong AF point selected, focus on the wrong bit of your subject, and not be able to tell at a glance from the viewfinder.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 12-10-2009, 03:57 AM  
FF in 2010?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 635
Views: 98,218
But that wouldn't make much sense. 24-70 is not very useful right now on the crop bodies - whereas the 100mm has use on both crop and FF. It makes sense for Pentax to drop the lenses that would find uses on both sides *now*, and save the primarily-FF focal lengths for when the body itself actually hits.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-10-2009, 02:47 AM  
Just asking? FF
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 8
Views: 2,457
Because advertising compatibility with film cameras is not an excessively popular to convince someone to buy your lens? :P Let's face it, us film shooters are the minority.

I do think this bodes well for a Pentax FF body in the future - we've been heading down the DA path for some time now, and this reversal (and removal of aperture ring) suggests that we're looking at a new body.

I'm ecstatic, just absolutely thrilled. Seriously.
Forum: Homepage & Official Pentax News 12-10-2009, 02:38 AM  
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 28
Views: 10,724
I think that was his point - D-FA without aperture ring means this thing isn't too useful on old Pentax bodies - which suggests that they're looking towards FF digital.

Exciting indeed.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-07-2009, 11:51 AM  
What DA* PRIMES would you like PENTAX to make?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 51
Views: 9,283
One word: weatherproofing.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-04-2009, 03:51 PM  
No nibbles on the DA* 50-135...
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 23
Views: 5,410
I agree - holidays is just not a good time for people to be shopping for themselves :P We're too busy spending money on other people! Normal gear purchase patterns will resume in Februrary (after we're done having a heart attack at the credit card bill)
Forum: Photographic Technique 12-02-2009, 08:43 PM  
Shooting Food - Lighting Tips?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 8
Views: 3,726
I recently shot some pictures as a favor for a little local restaurant, but being my first time in any sort of artificial lighting (not to mention food) situation, all I brought with me was a strong-ish lamp and a single board for reflecting.

The results were ok, but not great. The owner is interested in some more photos, and I'm personally a bit hooked on the whole controlled lighting, subject photography (as opposed to landscapes or street).

Anybody have any tips or links on basic still life lighting, or food lighting specifically? What kind of gear am I looking for? I don't have a flash, but plan on picking up the 540FGZ soon.

Also, for people who've done this sort of thing before - what's your preferred focal length for this sort of job? I did the previous shoot with the DA* 50-135 and I found the focal length to be fairly ideal.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 11-30-2009, 03:00 PM  
Went to Fry's Looking For a Small 4/3rds Camera, And What Did I Find ?????
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 6
Views: 3,123
Yeah, but then you get the awesome, ridiculous performance that is the 7D. Come on, comparing the K-x (or even the K-7) to the Canon 7D is not even a comparison. These are fine cameras, but the 7D is in another league entirely.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 11-27-2009, 10:21 PM  
K-x for HDR photography
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 13
Views: 2,713
Note also that we have automatic exposure bracketing - up to 5 exposures even... so IMHO there's really no need for in-camera HDR. One-touch bracket it, let it rip, and let Photoshop sort it out with much better results.

But yes, I too do not like HDR in general - it's a great tool, but like the vignette filter, far too often abused.
Forum: General Talk 11-25-2009, 07:00 PM  
Bing Cash Back?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 6
Views: 3,703
Beware of Bing cashback. It's been recently discovered that some online stores are raising prices for users detected to be coming from Bing, then applying the cashback, resulting in no (or even negative) savings.

The safest way to do this is to visit the store independently after clearing your cookies (or from another computer) and verifying the price vs. its "Bing cashback price".

Shady to say the least, hopefully Microsoft can step up their policing on this.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11-25-2009, 04:40 PM  
SDM repair costs and secondary failure rates
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 44
Views: 15,246
I'm looking at the 16-50 also, and thinking about the Sagemax warranty sold through B&H - anybody have any experience with them?
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 11-23-2009, 02:21 PM  
Poll: Would you buy a Pentax FF?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 119
Views: 24,263
I'd do it in an instant, assuming the FF camera was any good and can give the 5D2 a run for its high-iso performance. I love the K-7, but let's face it, anything at ISO 1600 and above is pretty trashy... the camera effectively maxes out at ISO 800 (1600 with a LOT of post-massaging with denoisifiers), which makes handheld night/indoor shooting somewhat difficult.

The 5D2's ISO 3200 looks buttery smooth, like the K-7 on ISO 400. That's the kind of performance you need to really do night shooting, and something I'm looking for.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 11-13-2009, 04:53 AM  
My Pentax K-x film setup
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 13
Views: 4,956
I'd be interested in knowing more about this :) I used to be big into amateur filmmaking myself, and these days it seems like you can get better results for even cheaper :)

What sort of rig is this? Self-assembled? Kit?
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 11-09-2009, 02:00 AM  
The K-7 makes me want to shoot JPEG
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 66
Views: 8,480
White balance - now there's a good reason to keep shooting RAW :) The K-7's WB is far from perfect.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 11-04-2009, 02:52 PM  
Recommendation for Film Body?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 19
Views: 5,843
But the DA's image circle won't fill 35mm?
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 11-04-2009, 02:17 PM  
Recommendation for Film Body?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 19
Views: 5,843
Hey all,

I'm looking to consolidate my cameras, I'm currently shooting a K-7 and a classic Canon AE-1... and it's costing me a bundle to feed both systems :) I do love the camera a bunch though.

So now I'm thinking I can consolidate my costs a bit if I go Pentax for my film body - won't be able to use the DA lenses, but everything K-mount up to FA should be usable on both bodies. Someone please correct me if this is wrong info.

I'd like to preserve as much of the "classic" feel of the AE-1 as I can. Does anyone have any recommendations or comments on this? I'm looking at the Pentax MX right now, but I'm honestly a bit lost as to what the pros and cons are of each body.

[edit] Oh, I'd also much prefer manual focus to autofocus... if I wanted great performance I'd use the K-7 :) The film is more for novelty and the classic old-timey feel.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 11-04-2009, 12:24 PM  
Poll: who keeps their strap on the camera?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 171
Views: 44,302
I use an R-strap. Keeps the camera handy and available at a moment's notice while leaving both hands free when I'm not actively taking a shot. I could not be happier with it, I don't have to worry about transitioning from wrist to neck between shooting/traveling, the camera is always secure.

Also helps me avoid looking like a plastic-and-metal alien is bursting out of my chest when carrying :P
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-27-2009, 03:58 PM  
Ultra-Wide Choices?
Posted By potatolicious
Replies: 16
Views: 4,828
Primes are ok - but 15 and 14 do not seem wide enough for what I want to do. Are there any 10mm primes - manual or autofocus?
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