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Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 1 Day Ago  
what's old may become new again
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 55
Views: 1,892
I remember well the promise of lower price along with smaller size when mirrorless first appeared but the lower price never materialised. I don't think the shift is about "making lots of money" to any greater extent than any other business, it's more about keeping up with the market, which has moved in the direction of video more than anything else. I am dubious about the number of photographers who are interested in video but video capability is a large part of what has been the push to get users to buy new equipment the last few years. I am sure that there has been cost-saving in not needed a mirror box but I think the money saved there has gone into the development of video tools - sensors with faster read-outs, encoding, AF etc, and that's what has eaten up the promised cost saving of losing the mirror box. I don't care about video but there isn't a camera I can buy that does all I want photographically without having video capabilities too. I'd love to save some money by omitting them but that isn't an option.
Forum: Lens Clubs 1 Day Ago  
The Sigma Lens Club- All lenses
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 2,965
Views: 478,721
There was some great light coming in through the large windows of a big bar/restaurant yesterday. I got this with the 35mm f/2 DG DN SOOC. I considered raising the shadows but I like the high contrast look for this image.


Leaving
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr
Forum: Canon, Nikon, Sony, and Other Camera Brands 4 Days Ago  
Making the switch: DSLR (K1) to mirrorless (Fujifilm X-T5)
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 35
Views: 1,036
Not true at all. I almost never use a tripod and I use manual lenses all the time on both an X-T20 and an S5 and I get great results focusing manually. I just don't do it while dancing a jig.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 4 Days Ago  
what's old may become new again
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 55
Views: 1,892
As far as I know any mirrorless ILC will allow for better focus of manual lenses than any DSLR. Maybe some really old ones will have poorer MF tools but the newer ones work very well.
Forum: Pentax K-3 III 4 Days Ago  
I think I am giving up, and am leaving Pentax, unless there is an effective solution
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 68
Views: 3,226
I agree that you have a defective camera. Even the oldest of DSLRs have better AF that this.
Forum: Film SLRs and Compact Film Cameras 4 Days Ago  
Post your B&W Film shots
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 11,760
Views: 1,349,536
People here may be interested that Ilford just announced the availability of their Kentmere 100 and 400 films in 120 format. These should be a bit cheaper than other Ilford alternatives like FP4+ and HP5+ (on which I believe they're based).
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 5 Days Ago  
what's old may become new again
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 55
Views: 1,892
I do like having an OVF, but I like being able to very quickly and accurately use manual focus lenses more, and no matter how big they are OVFs will never be able to magnify 10x a specific portion for precise focusing.

I miss using a Pentax camera but the only thing I miss about DSLRs per se is the battery life. I don't miss the dodgy AF. I don't miss the gaping holes in the lens line-up or the lenses that stay in production year after year despite having well-known design faults.
Forum: Photographic Industry and Professionals 6 Days Ago  
The latest digital camera global market share (2021)
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 9
Views: 694
Nothing really surprising there. I don't see CaNikOny domination of the market ending any time soon either.
Forum: Pentax Price Watch 6 Days Ago  
ALERT “boxed” Pentax-A SPECIAL on sale !!!
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 4
Views: 532
TBH it looks better in the standard black colour scheme but I'll be interested to see if this sells and for how much.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 6 Days Ago  
what's old may become new again
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 55
Views: 1,892
I don't think that things will swing back to favour the DSLR, after all, mirrorless cameras are now so popular due to the things that they can do that DSLRs can't, and that's not going to change - video plus face, eye, animal, vehicle detect AF. They're all things that DSLRs can't do unless in live-view where they're essentially a bigger, clunkier mirrorless camera with no viewfinder. I very much hope that DSLRs survive, especially now that Pentax are the only show in town bringing out new models, though CaNikon may still be manufacturing some current DSLRs (I don't know if they are, just that they're still selling them).
Forum: Pentax K-3 III 6 Days Ago  
I think I am giving up, and am leaving Pentax, unless there is an effective solution
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 68
Views: 3,226
I don't think this is true at all and it certainly hasn't been my experience. I tried AF-C with my K200D and K-3 and quickly came to the conclusion that it's useless and stuck with AF-S. AF-S is generally fine for stationary subjects and gave something like a 90% in-focus hit rate in that scenario, while for moving subjects I need to rely on timing and taking several shots to get something with spot-on focus. My experience with AF-S and stationary subjects on three different mirrorless cameras is that they focus correctly, even at wide apertures, 100% of the time.

I believe that continuous AF with screw-drive lenses cannot work properly because they simply aren't capable of making the micro-adjustments needed to compensate for slight movement of a subject's eye. Lenses with built-in motors should solve this but rely on a good AF system in the camera, which newer Pentax models may have.
Forum: Lens Clubs 6 Days Ago  
The Sigma Lens Club- All lenses
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 2,965
Views: 478,721
Sigma 24-70mm DG DN


Segovia
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr


Aqueduct
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr
Forum: General Talk 6 Days Ago  
Your latest acquisition
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 25,803
Views: 1,952,410
remember you won't pay that price later. I have several thousand images in Flickr but the price just keeps going up. I went to Pro in 2019 and have paid: €50, €48, €66 then this year €72. There are no offers after the initial one to reel you in.
Forum: Lens Clubs 6 Days Ago  
The M Club!
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 9,241
Views: 1,397,023
You got some very nice results this month and the tones in your B&Ws are generally superb. The M 50/1.4 is my de-facto manual fast fifty and I've seen it's much better on FF that it was on APS-C and shooting wide open can often work well. An upgrade will give you sharper results wide open or close to it but I have found that I still prefer the fun of manual over the niceties of full-auto and sharpness wide open that I get from my Lumix 50/1.8. I use the Lumix mainly for when I want face or eye recognition AF, especially for moving subjects.
Forum: Photographic Industry and Professionals 11-29-2022, 07:44 AM  
Canon is pulling out of the low end
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 30
Views: 1,388
This really isn't news. I like how the article makes it sound like it was Canon's plan after all rather than them being at the mercy of the market along with everyone else.

Low-end items need to sell in high volumes in order to be profitable as the profit on each unit is very small. Those high numbers are now gone, with most using their mobile phones or being content with an older camera they feel no need to replace.

Everyone else has done this, including Pentax, whose "entry-level" DSLR, the K70, has morphed into the KF, which is essentially the same camera at a higher price point. This is bad news for anyone who wants a proper camera but doesn't have the money even for a modest one, they will be forced into used items. Still, the used market is large and the cameras from the last six years or more are still very capable.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11-29-2022, 06:48 AM  
Seimar 35mm F2.8
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 17
Views: 834
If it's a different focal length then it's not the same. The optical design may be similar but results may be very different.
Forum: Lens Clubs 11-29-2022, 06:47 AM  
The 50mm Lens Club
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 1,949
Views: 298,816
S5 and Minolta 50mm f/1.7


Van leaves
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr


Van graffiti
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr


Crimson leaves
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr
Forum: Canon, Nikon, Sony, and Other Camera Brands 11-29-2022, 06:44 AM  
L-mount camera club - Leica, Panasonic, Sigma
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 50
Views: 2,115
Some colourful images with the S5 and 20-60mm


Tweety-Pie street art
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr


Purple to blue
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr
Forum: Lens Clubs 11-29-2022, 06:41 AM  
The Sigma Lens Club- All lenses
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 2,965
Views: 478,721
Sigma 24-70mm DG DN


Segovia rain
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr
Forum: General Talk 11-29-2022, 06:21 AM  
Your latest acquisition
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 25,803
Views: 1,952,410
I am always a little wary of products which claim to defy the laws of physics...
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11-24-2022, 07:24 AM  
35mm f2 SMC-M vs A?
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 18
Views: 651
I have had the M 35/2 for a number of years and on APS-C it is my favourite "normal" manual prime and has served me well for many years. I have often taken it on trips here in Spain and used it as my main lens. It's not sharp wide open but by f/2.8 it's good and that's where I most often used it if I wanted subject isolation.

Last year I bought the A version as a mint copy came up locally for what I considered a reasonable price but earlier this year I changed to a different main camera system and the A went in order to raise funds, so I didn't own it for long. It's possible that it was a better lens than the M but my history and attachment to the M (and it's poorer cosmetic condition and market value) meant that I kept the M. The A was certainly sharper wide open but I didn't have the opportunity to test if the rendering and other qualities were fully up to the standard of the M, so I played it safe and sold the A. Ideally I'd have really liked to do some side-by-side tests but in my few months with the A I concluded:

(1) It's sharper than the M wide open
(2) Bokeh wasn't fantastic (not a surprise for a wide angle) but I can't say if it was any better or worse than the M as I wasn't able to test it in similar conditions
(3) It's a beautiful lens and lovely to use - well built, very smooth focus, nice clicks to the aperture ring
(4) Image quality overall was good, certainly nothing to complain about

The M 35mm f/2.8 is also a good lens and wide open probably on a par with the f/2 at f/2.8 in terms of sharpness. Beware, many report problems of sticky aperture on this model, though my copy doesn't suffer from it.

But if I were to recommend a manual 35mm lens other than the M or A 35/2 it would without doubt be the Ricoh Rikenon XR 35mm f/2.8. There are two versions of this lens - the second is a re-branded Pentax M and the first (which I have) is an original Ricoh design that can be identified by: an aperture that goes to f/16, 6 blades and minimum focus distance of 35cm. This lens is absolutely superb and I suspect if I test it against the M 35/2 it will trounce it in many respects. It's sharper, has more contrast and is at least as well built. My copy is also in mint condition and a real beauty. Focus is super-smooth.

Here are the links to my Flickr albums for each though the A and Rikenon albums don't have many photos since I've owned them for much less time.

M 35/2: Pentax M 35mm f/2 | Flickr

A 35/2: Pentax A 35mm f/2 | Flickr

Rikenon 35/2.8: Ricoh XR Rikenon 35mm f/2.8 | Flickr

* * * * * *

The K 30mm f/2.8 I bought this year and haven't used much. I can tell you that the bokeh is worse than any of the aforementioned 35mm lenses and that I suspect it's less sharp at f/2.8, at least outside of the centre. For what it costs you could get an M 35/2 or maybe an A 35/2 and I'd say they're both better lenses.

* * * * * *

The M 85/2 is a great lens but not super-sharp wide open where it suffers a loss of contrast and rather extreme blue fringing in high-contrast elements of a scene. Stop it down a little and it has superb rendering, nice bokeh and probably the most "3D feel" of any lens I've used. I'd never sell mine.
Forum: Canon, Nikon, Sony, and Other Camera Brands 11-24-2022, 07:02 AM  
The Phone Club!
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 1,213
Views: 152,533
I took this last night on my A52s 5G. I might need to have another go with a "proper camera" and see how it comes out.


Winter chestnut stand
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr
Forum: Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo Stories 11-24-2022, 07:00 AM  
Thematic Flickr Explored
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 1,824
Views: 152,176
This photo from a few months ago just got to Explore today.


Penguin
by Jonathan MacDonald, on Flickr
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 11-24-2022, 06:50 AM  
Are we really THAT rare?
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 6,955
Views: 946,009
Of course, very important to travel in order to be able to fully enjoy photographing new places.
Forum: Vintage Cameras and Equipment 11-24-2022, 05:25 AM  
Pentax MX lenses
Posted By Jonathan Mac
Replies: 20
Views: 712
Bear in mind that the 19-35mm comes in many brands but it's all the same lens, though there are AF and manual focus versions. Off the top of my head - Vivitar and Cosina but maybe others. I had a MF Cosina in PK and now I have an AF Vivitar in Nikon F.
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