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Forum: General Photography 1 Day Ago  
Ratings and Reviews do you trust them and why?
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 55
Views: 922
I trust a review that goes into the negatives. Then I decide whether they matter in the context of my own photography.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 09-20-2019, 05:57 AM  
New K-series DSLR under development to be exhibited
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 2,748
Views: 168,945
Now we need the M42 body with the sensor behind a mechanically cranked shutter. :p

I won't be buying this because my K-5 is still more than adequate for all the things I want an APS-C DSLR to do, and my K-1 handles everything the K-5 can't, but it is good to see it appear.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 09-09-2019, 04:22 AM  
Stand development failure.
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 6
Views: 501
Not at all reliably that I could see.

The amounts were weighed on a balance that is sensitive to fractions of a gram, so I don't think that's the issue. I will dump the soda, refresh it and try again with a non-stand method this time. If it fails again, I'll try a film in a different camera... but my MX has been quite fine up until now, and the exposures the meter is giving me correspond well to previous experience.

Of interest, I have scarcely ever managed to get the crisp black-and-white "just like normal chemistry" look that some of the Caffenol gods seem to be able to achieve. I look at the Caffenol communities on Flickr and keep on asking myself what I am doing wrong. Perhaps in the mixing? They were all mixed together in the same water and then made up to 500ml before pouring in, but that should not matter - they're all together in the broth for over an hour anyway. I added the ingredients in the order I listed them, and then poured them into the tank as soon as the mixture had been made up to volume spec.The film was definitely in the lower part of the tank (I've made that mistake before), and with 500ml of solution it should have been well covered.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 09-08-2019, 11:16 AM  
Stand development failure.
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 6
Views: 501
Film: Kentmere 400, shot in a Pentax MX.

Method (taken from a Caffenol site):

Patterson tank.
8g anhydrous washing soda
5g vitamin C powder
10g iodized salt
20g instant coffee
Made up to 500ml volume.
Agitated for one minute continuous, left to stand for 70 "for 400 films"

Water stop bath (repeated rinses and inversions till ran clear)

5 min in Ilford Rapid Fix (fixer tested OK with leader)

Result: NOTHING. The film behaves as essentially unexposed, except possibly at the corners of the frames.


Should I be even more extreme? Should I leave it for two hours? Or should I have gone for semi-stand? My last film in caffenol wasn't exactly the greatest either, which makes me wonder if one of the ingredients is "off". The instant coffee brand is unchanged. Maybe I should replace the anhydrous soda with a fresh batch. Replacing the Vitamin C would be expensive.
Forum: General Photography 09-03-2019, 12:35 PM  
The worst of Craigslist/Shopgoodwill/eBay etc.
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 684
Views: 30,248
Mint perfection - epic win! :lol: :p
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 08-26-2019, 11:21 AM  
" To acquire or not to acquire the HD Pentax-DA 20-40mm F2.8-4 Limited DC WR
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 39
Views: 1,475
A few years ago now, I treated myself to the full stable of Pentax DA Limited lenses (minus the ones I already had). I took the 15, 21, 40 and 70 with me on an overseas business trip to Melbourne, Australia, during which there was a fair bit of time to take pictures. I mostly ended up using the 21 and 40, and at the end of that trip I understood the place of the 20-40 in the Pentax lineup.

The reason I didn't buy it is because I had both extremes covered at the cost of not much more space (possibly even LESS) in the camera bag and a whole stop more light at the 40mm end with the Limited prime. Someone who did NOT have all the primes and didn't want to change lenses could probably do great street-photography work with just the 20-40 on the smallest possible APS-C body.

It's worth noting that the 20-40 is a DC lens. That means no screwdrive, so older bodies - the *istD series and some of the earlier digital K's - can't use it. There are quite a few of those still giving sterling service in the hands of Pentaxians everywhere, so it's a limiting factor worth keeping in mind if you're thinking about this lens.

On the other hand, ALL the Limited primes kept their screwdrive and some of them (the 40mm and 70mm) give sort-of acceptable results on film (for casual snapshots at least), so that means even the AF-era film cameras can use them at a pinch.
Forum: Welcomes and Introductions 08-16-2019, 07:28 PM  
F Lenses On K-70
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 19
Views: 704
Are you trying to say that the old lenses you have are all manual-focus?

In that case, watch this:














You Tube



Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 08-15-2019, 05:09 AM  
Three cameras
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 10
Views: 1,824
Agreed. As with the D-FA* 70-200/2.8 (and anything larger), this is one of those cases where you mount the camera to the lens, not the other way around. :p

I'd put the *istDS on the 70-200 for fits of giggles, but it can't drive the AF.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 08-15-2019, 04:54 AM  
Original kit lens for the Pentax SF1n (1989)?
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 24
Views: 1,270
I remember these being sold, when the cameras were new, with what I now recognise as the "Takumar-F" (non-SMC-coated) variants of the F-series AF zoom lenses. Mind you, the same shop window often featured them with the normal SMC F series, so my guess is the Takumar F's were put on for the budget-conscious photographer who could only JUST afford the camera if the budget lens was on it.
Forum: General Photography 08-14-2019, 08:59 AM  
The worst of Craigslist/Shopgoodwill/eBay etc.
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 684
Views: 30,248
Please tell me they meant "Vertical Grip". *facepalm*
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 08-14-2019, 07:52 AM  
One K-Mount PRIME to rule them all 2019
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 71
Views: 3,913
I'm deliberately going to nominate one lens in each of three very discrete categories, and I hope you'll understand why I've chosen three.

M42: I don't shoot my M42 cameras much, but they don't lie completely idle either. S-M-C Takumar 50mm f/4 macro here. If I had to have any lens accidentally get loc-tite on the threads before putting it on my Spotmatic F, this would be the one I'd fret least over. No low-light or razor-thin DOF capability, but able to photograph most things at any time on a street photography/walkaround basis (which is 90% of what I use the camera for).

K-mount, APS-C: DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro without hesitation.

K-mount, full-frame: If the DA 35/2.8 Macro had been FF-compatible it would get the nod here as well. However, I'm going to go with the FA 50/1.4 for this category, because I shoot both the K-1 and numerous film bodies. The focus throw is optimised in arc and damping for AF, which means it's not ideal for my K mount film bodies (all of which predate the AF era), but it can work with them at a pinch and it talks perfectly with all my DSLR bodies.

At a pinch, I guess you could narrow it down to the S-M-C Tak 50/4 Macro if I absolutely had to take only one.

If I'm allowed to take extension tubes I could possibly substitute the S-M-C Tak 50/1.4, but that's another matter and it doesn't allow the ease of use the 50/4 macro does on the Spotmatic F.
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 08-02-2019, 08:25 AM  
1.5v battery in Spotmatic?
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 11
Views: 773
The F has its own peculiar taste in batteries anyway (PX625, IIRC).
Forum: Photographic Equipment for Sale 07-30-2019, 07:47 AM  
For Sale: SV, KM, MZ-7, SF10, SF1n, Super Program, 2x & -1 diopter eye, D-LI50
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 49
Views: 6,616
Thanks. I already have one of those fitted. I find it more useful than the standard one for avoiding embarrassing horizon tilts. Anyone who has an MX and is curious about the whole interchangeable screen thing should consider trying one.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 07-30-2019, 07:44 AM  
Upgrade Question - Upcoming ASP-C Flagship or K1 Mk ii ?
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 43
Views: 3,209
First tell me what it is about your K-5iis that warrants an upgrade.

I bought myself a K-1 because I could afford it, because I wanted it, and because I already had a lot of film-era full-frame lenses (including FA primes and zooms) that could go on it. I am fortunate in being in a position to do that. I had no actual NEED ever to go beyond the K-5 for my purposes, and neither it nor the K-1 will be replaced with a similar camera until they die.

Bear in mind if you use your K-5iis for casual family snaps that the K-1 has no flash; this has led me to prefer the K-5 with the 18-135 for family holidays where compactness of kit is an issue.
Forum: Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 07-29-2019, 07:54 AM  
Canon rush to reassure investors as camera profits plunge 64%
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 68
Views: 2,568
Fuji for me. I got a chance to play with an XT-2 a couple of weeks ago and I very nearly bought it. As someone who uses film cameras on a regular basis, that thing appealed to my instincts. If I weren't a heavy Pentax user already and I didn't really need full frame or legacy film lens support, Fuji would get my money for sure; mostly for that reason.
Forum: Photographic Equipment for Sale 07-23-2019, 06:28 PM  
For Sale: SV, KM, MZ-7, SF10, SF1n, Super Program, 2x & -1 diopter eye, D-LI50
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 49
Views: 6,616
Bumping for you, and to clarify exactly what the SG focusing screens look like through the viewfinder. Is that the square grid one?
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 07-11-2019, 07:50 AM  
A funny thing happened in the developing tank today.
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 12
Views: 926
No, it was towards the end of the roll, which would have put it further out on the periphery.

There are so many Caffenol recipes it isn't funny. I've got a B&W film in my MX right now, nothing irreplaceable, and I'm going to risk it on a 70 minute stand (with 1 minute inversion to start) and see what happens.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 06-30-2019, 04:26 AM  
One K-Mount PRIME to rule them all 2019
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 71
Views: 3,913
That would be me.

Given the "trapped on a desert island with food, shelter and power" scenario, I would have to take the DA35/2.8 Macro. The least tragic lens to be permanently stuck on my K-5. If only it were full-frame.

If I'm allowed to grab my deglassed P-KA 2X teleconverter to use as an extension tube, I'll take the FA 50/1.4.
Forum: Lens Clubs 06-29-2019, 09:22 AM  
Macro by any means necessary club
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 532
Views: 104,467
Ant on a Peony. The little bugger eats sugar secreted by the flower, which is necessary for it to escape from its shell.

K1G09383 by PD's Deadly Lens, on Flickr


Pentax K-1 with a Formula 5-branded M42 135mm/2.8; I can't remember what the aperture was. These old telephoto lenses have a VERY long minimum focal distance, and even a deglassed 2X teleconverter wasn't enough; it took my deglassed 3X teleconverter to enable me to get anywhere near close.

The EXIF data on Flickr is flawed; for some reason, the T/C's appear to close the aperture contacts on the camera body in such a way as to report f/2.8 all the time. Certainly the lens isn't reporting it!
Forum: Pentax K-1 06-25-2019, 08:51 AM  
Just Aquired a Bunch of Old Manual Gear, Time for a K1?
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 14
Views: 888
You are already a Pentax user, your Kr could be dying, and you're happy to stay with the system. You have a whole bunch of full-frame lenses.

A used K1 in good condition is a logical progression if it's in your price range. Mine is 2 years old and has something like only 9000 shots on it, but that's because I still muck around with film and also use a K-5 and an *istDS (the latter for various reasons connected to its TTL flash protocol). The K-1 comes out to do the heavy lifting when nothing less will suffice, and I am sufficiently happy with it that when Pentax offered a low-cost conversion to K-1 Mk 2 I saw no reason to get that done. If I die before the K-1 does, it will never be replaced.

If all I had were my DA lenses, I probably would never have moved up from the K-5. But I was gifted my late father in law's old Pentax film kit and bought some other lenses for it and things snowballed from there, so when my K-5 became my nearly full-time work camera, I had enough full-frame lenses from across the entire range (including AF) that a full-frame body for recreational heavy duty stuff was more than justifiable for me. You are in a very similar situation now.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 06-22-2019, 08:07 PM  
A funny thing happened in the developing tank today.
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 12
Views: 926
It might not, but I'm hoping there will be quality improvements vis a vis contrast etc. when I hit the right mark.
Forum: Film Processing, Scanning, and Darkroom 06-22-2019, 01:55 PM  
A funny thing happened in the developing tank today.
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 12
Views: 926
I was trying out a new Caffenol recipe with a shortened development time, more coffee, more vitamin C and some salt. I was prepared for things to screw up and get poor results.

The overall effect was that it looked like the entire roll had been underdeveloped (15 min in the tank instead of 25, the usual Kentmere 400). Now this is sort of what I had expected, except that I had taken sequences of three shots fired one stop apart, so the degree of underdevelopment should have been staggered.

Odd thing is, one shot right near the end of the roll looked perfect, in all three exposures. Just one.

I wonder what on Earth is going on here. I am going to try again with a wider spread of over-and-under and five more minutes in the tank.
Forum: Photographic Industry and Professionals 05-28-2019, 09:02 AM  
From Canon to Sony to Fuji but saving the best for last... Pentax?
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 36
Views: 2,429
He does come across as that sort of guy, but I'll be happy to take the good press while it lasts.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 05-15-2019, 01:56 PM  
Travel choice: k3 or k1?
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 19
Views: 1,297
People in their living rooms and birthday parties of toddlers in a travel package strongly suggests the K-3 for the built-in flash.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 05-09-2019, 05:13 AM  
Rumours of HD Pentax-D FA 50-300mm f/4.5-5.6/6.3
Posted By pathdoc
Replies: 97
Views: 11,779
That's a very slow aperture for the sorts of places I like to use a longer zoom.
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