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Forum: Do-It-Yourself 03-01-2012, 08:37 PM  
D-AC50 power adapter cheap replacement
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 32
Views: 19,738
I will offer a cautionary tale for those making their own power connections. I made several attempts to do this with a 8.4 V/2A power supply I found at a local Fry's. It worked for my first cable attempt, but I ended up shorting out the power input on my K10D with my second attempt. With the Pentax AC50 power supply the camera longer powers up, just the blinking battery icon mentioned in a post above. Fortunately, it still powers up with a battery, so it is not bricked. Lesson learned, be careful making your cables.

I will also add that the pins on the power connector are very small. Helping hands and tinning your wires helps. I put on some shrink tubing on each pin to keep things in place after the final soldering.
Forum: General Talk 04-21-2011, 07:34 AM  
Michigan State Police "search" cell phones during traffic stops
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 11
Views: 2,193
From the article it doesn't sound like they are forcing people to hand over their phone, but suggesting that they do. This is a typical thing the police will do when they pull you over. "So, where were you heading so quickly" "You're from out of town, may I ask what brought you here to visit." "Mind if I check in the trunk" etc. They are always trying to push the limits of what they can ask and search to gather more information. The whole "if you have nothing to hide" argument is bogus since very few of us know all of the laws and would have no idea if we've unintentionally done something illegal. The best advice is what most lawyers will give you, keep your mouth shut unless someone who knows the law is in the same room with you and the cop.
Forum: General Talk 04-17-2011, 10:00 PM  
Hired by a local police department?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 8
Views: 1,818
To me part of community policing is the official police interacting with members of the municipality they serve. Maybe they have some community nights or presentations at local schools that you could shoot at. Are they looking for an image revamp or just some more variety in their website. Maybe they'd let you shadow an officer or interview them and that could give you some ideas.
Forum: Pentax DSLR Discussion 03-30-2011, 12:05 AM  
Another potential Pentax Rental Company -
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 17
Views: 6,634
I was just talking with a rep from this evening at a the SF SMUG meetup this evening. They are expecting a shipment of Pentax lens next Monday. Among those I remember then are getting: DA*16-50, 540 Flash, K7 body, K5 body, FA 50mm, FA 100 Macro, DA 200mm/2.8. There were others, but I didn't catch them all.

For those in the Bay Area they will drop off at selected local camera shops for pickup and return.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 03-04-2011, 05:54 PM  
K7-Can you Bracket different Apetures?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 10
Views: 2,167
Not automatic bracketing per say, but at least on the K10D you could shoot in manual and use the exposure lock while adjusting the shutter speed. You'd get different apertures at the same exposure. I think this function carried over to the K-7.
Forum: Photographic Technique 02-22-2011, 03:00 PM  
Shooting the stars (in the sky, not on the red carpet)
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 6
Views: 4,131
AstroStack is written in Java and the website says it runs on Mac. Certainly worth checking out a demo.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 02-17-2011, 06:44 PM  
How would you import the GPS-track to lightroom 3?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 2
Views: 2,893
I download the track from my GPS in to a GPX file and then import it with Jeffrery Friedl's plugin . Not the most intuitive UI, but it's donationware and gets the job done. It will also link in with Google Earth and pull coordinates from it to be attached to photos.
Forum: Photographic Technique 02-15-2011, 06:00 PM  
Shooting the stars (in the sky, not on the red carpet)
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 6
Views: 4,131
Steven Christenson has a good tutorial on star trail and night photography. It mainly covers star trails, but he has some good information about night photography in general. The main things that you need to worry about if you just want to take a picture of stars without starting to see trails will be the exposure time. Steve has a good formula in the tutorial linked above. As for noise this is harder to get around, you'll have to kick up your ISO to get a shutter speed fast enough to capture the stars while still, but, as you've seen, that will really kick up the noise.

I've not tried it myself, but photo astronomy folks get around this by averaging several images of the same capture together. For this you need some software that will change the rotation of the image, accounting for star movement. A program like DeepSkyStacker or Astrostack should be able to handle that. Not sure if the layer align function in Photoshop would do it, but that's another option. You could then take your star field shot and layer it on your foreground shot with a layer mask. Essentially what you'd do for a stacking-based method of taking a star trail photo.

Serious astro photographers use a tracking mount, but that's getting way more complicated and expensive than it sounds like you want to get.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 01-28-2011, 10:37 AM  
Pentax losing momentum in Japan?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 24
Views: 8,808
I've never been one for rankings, they don't always tell the whole picture. My question would be is Pentax pulling profit and do they have enough cash to continue R&D efforts. If you have that as a company you are doing very well.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 01-27-2011, 07:58 AM  
Macbook Pro requirements to run CS5 well?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 17
Views: 8,483
My primary computer is a 13" Macbook Pro Unibody with a Intel Core 2 Duo 2.26 GHz. It came with 2 GB of RAM and CS4 ran find with no other apps running on one or 2 10-MP files. I wanted to run several more programs at once so I saved up and maxed out to 8 GM and put in a larger hard drive. It's not too expensive if you buy from a third party and do the install yourself. Apple charges a lot for extra RAM.

The comments about going with a larger screen are also correct. A 13" screen is workable for photo editing and fine for sorting and tagging, but using an external monitor when I'm at home is a much better option. Screen size is a trade off. For me I find the weight of a 15" or 17" laptop to defeat the purpose of having a portable computer. For the money I'd probably get a 27" iMac and an iPad rather than one 17" Macbook Pro. Depends on your own needs.
Forum: Photographic Technique 12-15-2010, 02:49 PM  
What to do when you come up against multiple white balances?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 17
Views: 3,418
Second on the set manual to a grey card. You could also just stay in one in-camera white balance, shot a grey card and then adjust in PP. The synchronize function in Lightroom or ACR (or copy and paste in Lightroom or Aperture) would make this easier. Set one white balance and then just apply it to all of the pictures with the same light.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 12-15-2010, 02:43 PM  
RAW file editing program?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 9
Views: 5,505
The only issue I see with using PSE as a post editor is that it can't do everything in 16-bit. That said if it can do the things you want to in 16 bit or you only work in 8 bit PSE will be fine.
Forum: General Talk 11-30-2010, 03:03 PM  
Big Brother's 1984 post office
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 8
Views: 2,565
I'm with Parallax. Pretty sure this is against current Federal government policy on how SS#s can be used.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11-24-2010, 08:30 AM  
DA 16-45mm Vs 17-50mm/2.8 , which one ?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 23
Views: 4,789
The DA 16-45/4 was one of my first lenses and is still my go to lens if I can only carry one. Normally I carry the DA 12-24/4 and a Tamron 28-75/2.8. Your assessment of the 16-45 strengths and weaknesses is spot on. The two cons you list can be taken care of in software pretty easily. CA can require some effort depending how had it is. PTLens will go a long way to correct both.

I'd say it really depends on what kind of photos you are going to take. As mentioned if you are shooting in lower light (indoors for example) you are going to miss those few extra stops between f4 and f2.8. Then again if you are doing landscape you'll miss the reach between 16mm and 17mm. I picked the 16-45mm/4 because at the time I was doing more landscape. I picked up the 28-75/2.8 because my subject matter grew to include lower light and close shots.

Tough choice, from the reviews I've read of the 17-50mm you really can't go wrong with either lens for really good, general-use glass.
Forum: General Talk 11-19-2010, 10:39 AM  
Is marriage obsolete?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 152
Views: 20,672
Looking at the history of marriage and more broadly the history of what is considered a family the first thing that you find is that it has changed broadly over time and between cultures. Only recently in human history has "marriage" been codified by a government outside of a religious unit, "official" so to speak. Our current official definition of a marriage of union may need to change to meet our society's specific definition. For myself I am not alarmed or surprised. Couples are still coming together and agreeing to raise families together. In my opinion that's a good as any "official" marriage.
Forum: Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 10-27-2010, 10:11 PM  
Pentax Intervalometer in Bay Area
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 2
Views: 2,197
Does anybody know of a retail store in the San Francisco Bay Area that might sell a Pentax-compatible intervalometer? My old one is on the fritz and the new one I ordered seems to have been stolen or fell out in transit. I'm assuming it's lost since I can't imagine who would want to steal such a device. I was planning on going some night shooting soon and in intervalometer makes things much easier.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 10-17-2010, 11:13 AM  
Topaz De-noise Aperture
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 16
Views: 6,196
They don't make a plugin that will run directly in Lightroom or Aperture, only Photoshop. To used the Topaz suite in Aperture have to use another program called Fusion to call their plugins from those programs. Effectively you select it as an external editor like you would Photoshop. It's a free download and they have instructions on their website.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-14-2010, 02:55 PM  
Help me decide: Sigma 17-70 or Tamron 28-75
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 19
Views: 4,401
Here is a Lightroom plugin and a stand-alone Windows program (Exposure plot) that will plot your EXIF info. Both are free or donationware.

As for your lens question. I shot with the Tamron 28-75/2.8 for a few years now and it's become my "go to" carry around lens. It's usually in my bag along with the Pentax DA 12-24/4. Very good for closeup shots and for indoor with decent light. As much as I love my Tamron my Pentax gets the most use. Before getting those 2 lens my primary was the Pentax DA 16-45/4, another great lens for the money. So I think you would miss the 17-28 focal length as well. I know I would.

That said I think the advice about sticking with your current lens and bumping up your ISO is a good suggestion. Lightroom 3 does an excellent job with color noise as does NoiseNinja and Topaz DeNoise 5. With any noise reduction method you do lose some image detail, so your mileage will vary. I'd test them out with some of your high ISO photos before diving in too deep.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 08-18-2010, 11:57 AM  
help - lenses for newbie
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 7
Views: 2,197
I very much agree. I use this same combo plus a Tamron 28-75/2.8 for (close and fast) for my general use kit. The macro on the Tamron is very functional, better than I had on an older Sigma 70-300mm.
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 07-26-2010, 07:27 AM  
Digital printing service
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 2
Views: 2,164
I'd start by getting the service provider's ICC printer profile. Many services, like Adorama, offer these to the general public. Sometimes you have to specify that you don't want any automatic adjustments to your photos. color. Dry Creek Photo offers user submitted profile for retail printers (Costco, Oscar Drug etc) across the country. You might also need to calibrate your own display.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 07-16-2010, 05:49 PM  
Magic Lantern Guides?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 23
Views: 5,736
I have the guide for the K10D and found it to be very good. It connects the camera's functions and practical photography theory. If you are a new shooter, not just with the camera it covers, then I recommend it even more.
Forum: General Talk 07-07-2010, 10:20 PM  
Do ancient documents (ie: different nations' Constitutions) have relevance today?
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 15
Views: 3,528
One thing to consider is that documents such as the US constitution lay a frame work and a set of basic principles. They also allow a mechanism for change. In the case of a constitution or a charter there is usually a provision that the document can be amended allowing it to be changed if need be. Another way that a document adapts is in how it is interpreted. US history is ripe with examples like this. If the basic structure of a founding document is well laid out it should still have relevance in current times.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 07-06-2010, 10:44 PM  
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 8
Views: 2,460
Says what it does, does what it says.
Forum: Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 07-02-2010, 01:02 PM  
I'm aiming for these kinds of pictures
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 19
Views: 4,544
I'll just add two comments to what's already been said. First you don' need spend $10K to take good pictures. Have a look in the Marketplace at some of the used lens and camera body prices. You can get a very nice and flexible bit of kit for under $1000. Lastly, if selecting your lens I'd look at the focal lengths you have chosen to shot with on your superzoom, should give you an idea of what your eye is drawn two.
Forum: Post Your Photos! 07-02-2010, 11:33 AM  
Misc A couple of weeks with Samyang 85mm f1.4
Posted By tybeck
Replies: 4
Views: 2,236
Had never hear of a focus trap so I poked around. A fellow here seems to have the right idea, in theory. I'll need to test it myself.
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