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Forum: Photographic Technique 04-01-2017, 02:40 PM  
What is your shooting style?
Posted By Rupert
Replies: 45
Views: 3,607
I may have the best "style" here...but not necessarily by choice. I have two feet I severely broke and am most fortunate to even walk. My knees are going south too...and I'm old and worn out. Topping it off, I'm lazy as hell. :lol: (No pity party here...I have a great life, no complaints! Been with Mrs Rupert almost 51 years, have everything in life I want and feel more blessed than I deserve!:))

So my "style" is to sit at my desk in my very comfortable little office and shoot what I can out my windows. I can shoot any time of year in any kind of weather, remaining in climate controlled comfort with my coffee cup on my desk and even a little treat if I get hungry.:D My bathroom is six feet away...makes it easy to get fast relief when I drink too much coffee or iced tea.;)

This is where I "work", play, or just fool around and waste time.
DSCF7594-800 by James Williams, on Flickr

DSCF7587-800 by James Williams, on Flickr

I'm not a serious shooter like some here I admire, but do daydream of safari shoots in the jungles or along the beaches of beautiful waters. Mountains and scenic landscapes are also appealing, but none of it is going to happen! So....I stay pretty content with the style I have and do the best I can. These are all from the K1 since I got it a year ago.....some decent some so-so...almost 95+% shot through my window panes. I'm about a half decent shooter...meaning I get lucky about half of the time. The K1 does greatly increase the rate of good luck! :)
Pentax K1 | Flickr

As for settings, I prefer M mode. The more you use it the better you get at it and the more pleased with the results. The Green Button on the K1 is very reliable to help get the proper exposure.....maybe a little too bright but you can back down a stop quickly.

Of utmost importance is having some fun with your shooting and with your results. I try to do that and find it satisfying. If I could get out and about easily as I once could. I would change styles, but that ain't gonna happen, so you get content with what you can do and enjoy!

Oh yeah, I am also long winded and have a big mouth...but most of you guys already know that!;) Most old guys are like that...a lifetime of stories looking for a listener!:D

Regards!:)
Forum: Digital Processing, Software, and Printing 10-12-2016, 09:41 PM  
ON1 to be a new RAW editor
Posted By Tas
Replies: 40
Views: 5,253
Just wondering really, several times I've seen people critical of the program though most haven't tried it. Please don't take that as an assertion of negativity towards you, I was just intrigued if you'd used it before.

I've used several iterations of the program over the last five years so I've been able to see and take advantage of the improvements in the program. I've been running Lightroom and Photoshop for longer and have found the latest version, Photo 10 has become the default program I use for a lot of my PP. This wasn't the case with previous versions, and whilst I don't think it's a solution for everything and everyone's needs I think more people should give the program a look as it does pack a lot of good features.

For their RAW program I"m hoping that it is as the pre-release info suggests, especially if they take up the pixel shift baton.

I guess time will tell all. :)

Tas
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 12-09-2016, 05:24 AM  
An 'Old Friend' back again !
Posted By pentaxpete
Replies: 12
Views: 1,568
I got back an 'Old Friend' the other day -- my ORIGINAL Asahi Pentax S3 bought for 87 in 1961 in a Camera Shop in Barking, Essex !! I had sold it to a bloke over 30 years ago and he said " It was not Working any more" -- when he brought it round it looked Very Sad -- the lens was COVERED in DUST ! I cleaned up the body with Cotton Buds ( 'Q-Tips' for you Yanks -- but we still LOVE you ! ) I brushed off the lens dust and cleaned with lens fluid and tissues and it was NOT SCRATCHED !! Then I took off the base-plate and with very small amount of Sewing Machine Oil lubricated all the Cogs and Levers -- then gently wound on and LO !! and BEHOLD !! It creaked into life again !! I took a few frames on Fuji Acros processed in my Home-Made Microphen at different shutter speeds and mostly at full aperture and shutter seems accurate -- lens is a bit 'soft' at f1.8 compared with my Super-Takumars and the 50mm f1.4 SMC Takumar of my Spotmatic F but not bad for 55 years old camera !
Asahi Pentax S3 03 by Peter Elgar, on Flickr
Asahi Pentax S3 02 by Peter Elgar, on Flickr
Asahi Pentax S3 01 by Peter Elgar, on Flickr
Forum: Pentax Full Frame 12-08-2016, 02:53 PM  
K1 owners - Image Requests and input desired
Posted By normhead
Replies: 29
Views: 3,332
My first K-1 images was taken Oct. 3, and I have 714 keepers in my library taken with the camera. The last one taken today has a shutter count of approximately 6,400 images.

I don't know whether to go positive or negative first... maybe just topics. If you missed the dynamic range of the K-5 when you moved to a K-3, you get it back plus another stop on top of that, almost 15 EV.

For images like this one, you can never have enough dynamic range. K-1 image


However, the K-3 wasn't all that bad, the thing is your display of DR is limited by your output device, so while the DR may add detail to your image it's unlikely the final image will look a lot different.

K-3 sunset..


The advantage is definitely with the K-1, how much it's worth to you to have 15 EV DR instead of 13, you may be disappointed.

The K-1 is good up to 3200 ISO, I really don't like the K-3 over 1000 ISO, IMHO it's more than a stop.

For walking around, there is nothing better than my K-3 with an 18-135 on it. There is no way you can avoid using two lenses for that range on a K-1. Not only that the 28-105 is about the same size as the 18-135, so you're going to be carrying a lot of extra weight for the same capability. And the 28-105 is the only modern DC motor type lens. If I have one big issue that's it. There simply is not enough "standard lens" type options. There should be a cheap kit lens sold as a throw away with the camera, a mid range like the 28-105, there should be at least two in that category, like the 16-85 and 18-135 on APS-c.

The other issue here is the weight. Long glass is prohibitive for the same capability.

For the same field of view and ƒ2.8, six pounds and massive compare to easily hand holdable. DA*200 on K-3, Tamron 300 2.8 on K-1.


Shooting my feeder denizens... for the birds I can walk up to, the K-1 gets me better images...


For the skittish birds where I have to stay in the blind, maintain some distance and where any noise will spook them, the K-3 is definitely better. And with K-3 and burst, buffer and AF being what it is, the K-3 is a joy to work with compared to a K-1 going after the same type of image.


There are some issues with the K-1. It's harder to get the images you want, but they are better when you get them.

I have shots like this, taken with the 50 macro @ 3200 ISO, in near darkness, and flash was truly not an option. I wouldn't even try this with a K-3.




So in essence, even with all the issues, the fact that the 2.8 glass for it is going to set you back 6k if you go for all of it, and there simply is nothing for it in less than 2.8 glass I still like it. The old FA 20-35 ƒ4, which is really what I'd like has become as rare as hen's teeth. No one is parting with theirs. And there's nothing coming on the lens map.

So the buy in to make all use of the K-1s capacities 2k for the Camera, $1600 for the 15-30, 2k for the 70-200, 1.2k for the 24-70, an no reasonable options to replace them. You're looking at $7000-$8000 without another 2k for the 150-450, to get you the capability you have with a 55-300. Just to have the same capability you have for your K-3, and probably a less than 2.5k investment. Now there's s source of frustration.

All that being said, my K-1 is my current "in the hand, walk around" camera. My K-3 is on the holster with the DA*200 with stacked TC in case I come across some wildlife.

Some recent images...








These are all marginally better than the K-3 images would be. It's twice the sensor area for twice the price, but it isn't twice the IQ. The maybe 33% extra resolution comes at a disproportionate price. And paying it means you have to carry heavier gear and work a lot harder to get what you want. Plus you'll take it places you shouldn't. Places the K-3 would actually be better, just because you like it. IMHO for the first little while until you get disciplined about taking the right camera for the job it's going to cost you IQ in some images where the K-3 would have been better. Once you get used to it and the "shiny new toy" thing is over, it's a wonderful tool. But unless you're rich, it's not going to be like APS-c where every lens I own is top of the line, for the purpose for which I bought it. There is going to be some gnashing of teeth, when you should have brought your K-3 and Sigma 8-16 and all you have is 28mm on a K-1 because you brought your "landscape" camera. In that case you will come home without the image you could have had. Instead of a possibly great image. Sure you can say, well bring your 8-16 and your K-3, but, on a given hike, I can only carry so much stuff.

Honestly for a guy like me where the ideal kit is two lenses, the K-1 is bad idea. But the allure of the images when you nail one is also exhilarating. It's like gambling, my odds are longer, but if I win I've got noticeably better. And also like gambling, it hurts when you lose.

On a lighter note, the tilt screen is really cool, and Pixel shift isn't worth paying for. Of the images i've done, where I compared PS images to a normal shot on the same tripod set with a 2 second delay, the PS images are better maybe 20% of the time, 80% of the time the non-PS image is better, and it's a lot of work for not much reward.
Forum: Pentax Full Frame 11-24-2016, 05:45 PM  
Pentax K-1 as a wedding camera!
Posted By opianstate
Replies: 109
Views: 20,673
To answer everyone's questions - yes, I had the profile corrections and noise reduction turned OFF, and I've never used the filters in this camera. I did a good amount of research in what could possibly slow the camera down in the months prior of owning it, and set them both up as such. And yes, both bodies had the firmware update. I was using only Lexar and SanDisk UHS-1 64GB memory cards and shooting in RAW (DNG).

To the user who commented about relying on AF....that's horses for courses, I guess. I see autofocus performance not as a crutch but a necessity. There are situations where the action pauses, and you can really dial things in, but there are also beautiful candids that require good AF to capture on the fly. If you'd like I can post a full resolution photo of the brides' eyes - they are both most definitely in focus - I checked (because in another, they aren't) but these files are downsized to work on the forums. It's hard to judge focus on a photo that's 1200px on the long end!

But to some degree, I do agree with those who said I shouldn't have counted on the K-1 for AF performance. I just was surprised - I'd used it for half a dozen professional shoots in the months prior and it had held up great. Not sure what I was doing wrong on the fly.

I hope that you all know I posted this not to bash Pentax or the K-1, it's a great camera. I simply wanted to provide some value to you all on how it performed in this particular situation. No discourse necessary here!
Forum: Pentax Q 10-26-2016, 08:41 PM  
OMG what have I become?
Posted By kwb
Replies: 20
Views: 3,127
Believe me I have no back pain, but even if I had, the fun of taking these shots would have been worth it.:)
These were all shot on the way to/from or at my work place.

01 prime:

Driving into purple by k kwb

02 standard zoom panorama:

Sunset by k kwb, on Flickr

03 Fisheye:

ROAD CLOSED by k kwb, on Flickr

06 telephoto zoom:

Twelve spotted skimmer (actually eight spotted skimmer, thanks David!) by k kwb, on Flickr

BORG 55FL:

Mower by k kwb, on Flickr

25.4mm C-mount lens:

Young grasshopper by k kwb, on Flickr
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10-26-2016, 12:59 PM  
Sad 150-450
Posted By grahame
Replies: 9
Views: 1,658
Buy an used PZ lens, broken one for parts if possible. You can take the contacts from PZ lenses and they should fit on the mount. If too long or too short to touch the metal underneath, you can modify them a little.

---------- Post added 10-26-16 at 03:02 PM ----------



Yes, unscrew the two little screws on the sides and pry the plastic holder carefully. pretty easy to remove.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-20-2015, 09:20 AM  
Best "Starburst" on lenses?
Posted By hoopsontoast
Replies: 73
Views: 13,787
Any of the older style lenses with straight sided aperture blades do a good job, IME the FA24, FA20-35 and FA43 have been very good at this, and a highly desireable traight in a landscape lens (more so than smooth bokeh from curved blades).


Cologne by Robert Seymour, on Flickr


Sunset by Robert Seymour, on Flickr
Forum: Photographic Industry and Professionals 06-26-2016, 10:59 PM  
Pentax on the evening news
Posted By Euan
Replies: 3
Views: 1,540
The local news did a story on a project I just completed, and at about the 1:00 mark you can see the K5 II and 16-50 I used to shoot most of it (a couple of the photos in the project were shot with the 12-24): Art project showcases ‘trail fairies’ who maintain North Shore mountain trails - BC | Globalnews.ca

I got them pretty wet and muddy over the course of the project, but they're still working great! The worst was the day where I went out in the pouring rain for hours and didn't realize I'd forgotten the hotshoe cover! Water eventually trickled into the body and it started acting pretty weird. An emergency run to the local camera store for some silica gel got it straighten out though. Now I've learned to leave a towel and ziplock bag + silica gel in my truck for after cold rainy shoots.

I got a lot of grit ground into the 16-50's focusing mechanism which I think led to the motor frying, but thanks to the instructions on this forum I was able to hack it to use the screwdrive instead! I don't post here very often, but this forum is a great resource and I really enjoy lurking! Thank you!
Forum: Pentax Film SLR Discussion 03-23-2016, 06:03 AM  
40 year old negatives
Posted By Nesster
Replies: 16
Views: 2,313
I was photo editor for my high school yearbook, and I saved all the negatives and my mom didn't throw them away. I found them and have been scanning them. I was shooting an Olympus Pen FT half frame with the standard lens, mostly Panatomic-X to keep the grain down. We had maybe 4 other photogs, each with a full frame SLR of varying makes.

The negatives are mostly in good shape. Tri-X has the curl even after 40 years ;) and half frame scanning is noticeably worse than full frame.

Anyway, I thought I'd share some samples.

This was a project I did, people in doorways, and then reversing it - the person took a pic of me. Never realized - and completely forgotten - till now

Doorway 1976 by Jussi, on Flickr

Doorways 3, 1976 by Jussi, on Flickr

Doorways 2, 1976 by Jussi, on Flickr

Doorways 1, 1976 by Jussi, on Flickr

and a few half frame portraits etc

Donna B. by Jussi, on Flickr

Donna S. by Jussi, on Flickr

Flow by Jussi, on Flickr

Lynne and Mack, 1975 by Jussi, on Flickr

Gaby on the Hood by Jussi, on Flickr
Forum: Photographic Technique 03-10-2016, 09:18 AM  
Eliminate bright spots in portrait photography with flash?
Posted By Digitalis
Replies: 10
Views: 1,489
It is better to achieve this through cosmetics than through post processing technique. Also using a 24" soft box 5' away from the subject didn't help as the light becomes too contrasty: the farther away the light source gets - the harder the shadows become, this also increases specularity. The soft box you used is 24" square, I'd suggest using it at twice that distance 48" away from the subject (at minimum) to reduce contrast, reduce specularity and get the most flattering light from the light modifier. This is why large light modifiers are more common in studio photography as you can place more distance between the light source and the subject and still achieve soft illumination.

For a shot like this I would have used something like a Mola Mantti 43.5" beauty dish, overkill perhaps, and out of the price range many are willing to pay - but the quality of light from large modifiers like that is well worth it.
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 02-15-2016, 09:06 AM  
Full K-1 Spec list
Posted By robbiec
Replies: 781
Views: 88,911
This is Ricoh / Pentax releasing a body that repays the loyalty shown. To them the Professional level is served by the 645 Series, FF is for their loyal enthusiasts and the odd convert. APS-C is still where the volume will be at and you have a few upgrades there. Or perhaps it is all a subliminal plan, start off with a KS-2, it does all the work at the start, one day you move away from the Green mode and you're almost an enthusiast, outgrow the KS-2 (based on the trolls here, say about 3 months?) because the 12Bit Raw format is holding you back and graduate to the K-3II, ohh super zippy, someone here sets you off on a LBA quest, 18 months and 121 lens purchases later and your PC, Mac or Cloud storage is full to the brim. Instead of bursts of 22 images every 30 seconds, you slow down, move back into AF-S, Single shot and you begin to ponder the meaning of your photography. What do I take pictures of? Is it birds? nah not really, am I beside the pitch at an international Rugby match? nope, do I have pictures of my kids and family? yes loads, pictures from your last holiday? yep, every waterfall in Iceland. You have the 3 FA Limited's and are curious as to how they will be on their natural format. You look at the specs, 4.5FPS? I only need one :) There you go, a K-1 customer all lined up. And there is still one step to go after that :lol:
Forum: Pentax Compact Cameras 01-18-2016, 07:57 AM  
GR + GW-3 (2 images)
Posted By newmikey
Replies: 4
Views: 1,915
Took my GR + GW-3 wide to a high vantage point over a very busy highway (for those who know a bit about the Netherlands: the A7 across the Afsluitdijk). The GW-3 has a 62mm thread but it vignets heavily with filters so I use a 72mm filter on a step-up ring. An ND1000 brought down shutter-speeds to 6, 15 and 30 seconds on a 3 shot exposure bracket. Combining the 3 as well as the relatively long shutterspeeds got rid of the traffic entirely!

Vanishing point
by Mike Bing, on Flickr

As a bonus, a HDR consisting of 3 exposures of the inside of the belvedere (the "Monument") which is located at the point where the builders of this huge dam closed the final gap:

Curves
by Mike Bing, on Flickr
Forum: Pentax Medium Format 12-17-2015, 03:56 PM  
Review - The 645 System for Landscape Photography
Posted By harklee
Replies: 33
Views: 9,261
1. The Question

“So what does it look like when a nature nut obsessed with large prints gets his hands on the 645 system?”

I think we all wondered about this question. Because, let’s not fool ourselves; the 645 system has always been
for landscape photography. It is not there to be cuddled. It is meant to be covered with flurries in the high Sierra,
beaten by hail in the stormy Grand Canyon, and blasted with sand showers in the scorching Death Valley.

It took five years to build my photography around these expensive chunks of metal and glass, and I think now I
can say a thing or two about them.


2. (More Formal) Introduction

I always thought the 645 system is primarily designed for landscape photography. Having been an old-timer
with the 645N II in a worn-out bag and a heavy user of the 645D and the 645Z since they were first introduced
into the market, that perspective never left my mind nor was ever challenged. Since hauling a 40-pound pack
on a regular basis for backpacking trips in the Sierra cannot be good for my beat up joints, I might have some
suggestions for future improvements, but all of these cameras and lenses stood the tests of the most
unforgiving terrains and elements so far. So I thought there must be a review from who knows a little bit about
landscape photography.

It’s not only the camera but also the photographer that has seen changes over the years. My fixation with the
‘a photograph must be a single exposure’ ideology, stuck in the head for quite sometime especially during the film
days, has seen noticeable compromises, as I’ve learned more about the differences between the way the human
eye sees the world and the way cameras do. And when I was educated more about the physical limitations that
any high-resolution photographic system is subjected to, I decided to take that painful path that embraces new
digital techniques. So this is also a piece about exploring new ways to best utilize the photographic system’s
potential.

Here I wanted to share some of the images that I photographed recently, as a way to examine the capabilities
of the Pentax 645 system; especially the new 645Z and some of the key optical pieces that have found space
in my bag. As the prime technical objective of my work is to produce large prints of the highest quality, I thought
providing some insights into the pixel-level quality, also not in its raw form, but in the final phase of the images
after all processing is complete and just before being fed into a Giclee printer, would be useful.


3. What’s in the Bag

- 645Z
- D-FA 25mm
- DA 28-45mm
- FA 45-85mm
- FA 80-160mm (occasionally)

- Memory cards (Sandisk Extreme Pro 95mb/s)
- Remotes (like chinese ones better than the Pentax ones)
- Lee 4X6 GND filters and home-made filter holder (only for seascapes)
- Polarizers and ND filters
- A modified inspection mirror (attached near the focus window of a lens)


4. Technical Details

Almost all images are produced from multiple shots with different exposure and focus settings. For those who
are not that comfortable with that notion, here is a simple fact; the human eye doesn’t work like a camera at all.
It constantly captures pieces of the real world and our brains stitch them up and turn into what we call a memory,
an artificial reconstruction and also often incomplete rendition. Each little piece is of different brightness and
placed at a different distance, but our eyes do a tremendous job covering almost over 20 stops of contrast ratio
and infinite depth in a heartbeat. So in order to see the way our eyes do, something has to be done.

The extent of this multi-exposure / multi-focus process depends heavily on the scene. To give you a point of
contact, ‘Echoes of the Silence’ utilizes almost 18 shots, as it represents the worse case scenario for landscape
photography; a large depth of field and a high-contrast backlit lighting condition. On the other hand, ‘A Night with
the Lights’ only(?) needed three mostly to extend the depth of field, as the light was tamable and the nearest
objects were still good tens of feet away. ‘The Highland’ is a single exposure image, that’s what I like about
photographing with a telephoto lens sometimes; the odds are you don’t have to worry too much about depth of field
(well not always, sometimes it gets even worse).

The Sony 51.4MP sensor, just like any high-resolution medium, is prone to optical diffraction, and it becomes
noticeable at any aperture smaller than f/10. If you stop down for increased depth of field, say to f/16, your
effective resolution is not that different than using a 24MP camera (the same thing can be said about large format
film cameras too. If you stop down too much, that negates the very purpose of going big). On the other hand, at
a wider aperture, diffraction may be minimized, but the corners deteriorate quite rapidly due to optical aberrations.
So for most images in this review, the aperture was kept at f/10.

There certainly are some exceptions. When the image includes elements that cover some depth and change
rapidly (waves in seascapes), I resort to smaller apertures. When a sun-star plays a role in the pre-visualized
image, I occasionally stop down to include the desired effect. When I am dealing with stars and the moon, I open
up to let more light in.

I know the newest trend in landscape photography is oriented heavily towards overuse of shadows and Orton
effects to make the images appear more dramatic, but that style has not really spoken to me personally nor is
well suited for print-oriented photography like mine (printers do not handle shadows very well).


5. Photos

Total eight images are presented as examples, and nine different 800px X 800px 100% crops are provided for
each image. All of these images are photographed with the 645Z. Please note that these images are optimized
for canvas prints and therefore sharpened quite aggressively. There are some artifacts because of the level of
sharpening and also the Bayer construction of the sensor, but based on trial and error, we figured it works better
that way for prints.

(1) Echoes of the Silence (2015)
D-FA 25mm / Eastern Sierra, California

(2) Winter Thirst (2015)
D-FA 25mm / Lake Tahoe, Nevada

(3) A Daydream (2015)
A 35mm / Grand Canyon, Arizona

(4) Windows to the Desert Winter (2014)
DA 28-45mm / Canyonlands, Utah

(5) And a River Runs Through (2014)
DA 28-45mm / Yellowstone, Wyoming

(6) The Highland (2014)
FA 80-160mm / Mt. Rainer, Washington

(7) The Grand Stage (2015)
FA 45-85mm / Grand Canyon, Arizona

(8) A Night with the Lights (2015)*
D-FA 25mm / Banff, Alberta
*night photography

To see the 100% crops, just click on any image in the following link.
(I have no intention to promote my website, it just is a better way of getting images organized.)

Hark Lee Photography

To me, the final verdict is quite simple and as predicted. The 645Z is a great camera with amazing DR and low
light capability. The DA 28-45mm is fantastic and outperforms the rest. The D-FA 25mm follows very closely but
it’s got some issues with field curvature and chromatic aberrations (CAs). The FA 45-85mm, FA 80-160mm, and
A 35mm are all great performers, but their days are numbered for any future high MP sensors.


















6. Breakdown

These are things that I learned over the years.

A. High-resolution Photography

(a) The current 51.4MP sensor, when used properly, can make prints with amazing details easily up to 45 X 60
size (about 137.43ppi).
(b) Fully utilizing a 80-100MP sensor will be a real challenge, but it doesn’t hurt to have more (at the expense of
more computing power and storage, but personally I’d rather take the resolution).

B. The 645Z compared with 35mm full frame

(a) The 645 system still holds an edge over any 35mm full frame system in resolution.
(b) With the 51.4MP Sony sensor, the 645Z offers better low light performance than most of the high-resolution
35mm full frame cameras in the market.
(c) The 4:3 ratio works much better for vertically composed images.
(d) The 645 system needs to offer a better ultra-wide angle solution. Even the 25mm feels limited sometimes.
(e) Much bigger and heavier than any 35mm full frame systems.

C. The 645Z compared with the 645D

(a) Much faster operation overall. With the 645D, you need to be patient, but the 645Z feels just right and smooth.
Buffer and writing speed are also greatly improved, enabling responsive interface for the photographer (reviewing
images, checking exposure, histograms, etc.) even in a continuous, high-speed shooting situation (for example,
bracketing five exposures with constantly changing focus under fast-changing light condition)
(b) Vastly improved dynamic range and low light / noise performances.
(c) Shutter / mirror vibrations are reduced significantly, crucial in high-resolution photography.
(d) Articulated screen is a very useful addition for low or high angle shooting.
(e) Live-view is incredibly useful. Especially for accurate focus and exposure.

D. Lenses

(a) D-FA (DA) 25mm

- It is a valuable addition, even when you have the DA 28-45mm. The extra wideness is very useful. Often
I find myself using the 25mm more than the 28-45mm.
- The lens exhibits noticeable field curvature and CAs. Multi-focus shooting can mitigate the field curvature,
and the CAs can be fixed relatively easily in post-processing.
- The lens offers great resolution, but I doubt the corner performance will hold up very well when the sensor
resolution is increased beyond 60-80MP.

(b) DA-28-45mm

- It performs very well with the 645Z, offering fantastic corner-to-corner sharpness through out the entire zoom
range.
- Copy-to-copy variation is quite significant. Please test your lens before purchase. Tested about 3 samples, all
perform differently. The most inconsistency comes from the corners at the wide end (28mm).
- Awfully heavy and big, feels almost over-engineered. SR is almost completely useless for landscape photography.
I can see how Pentax wanted to appeal to the studio crowds with this, but my knees and back are paying the price.

(c) A 35mm

- Early observations (when tested with 645D) indicated that this performs better than the FA 35mm, which showed
more field curvature.
- It still performs very decent with the 645Z, but compared with the DA 28-35mm, high frequency details are subpar.
- Copy-to-copy variation seemed quite minimal, based on 3 different samples I personally tested.
- I don’t see this will make a good lens for the future sensors with higher resolution.
- Still a valuable piece for backpacking trips due to its weight and size.

(d) FA 45-85mm

- Still a fantastic performer. The performance at 45mm is almost comparable to the DA 28-45mm.
- Copy-to-copy variation seemed quite minimal, based on 4 different samples I personally tested.
- Will need to see some updates for 80+MP sensors.
- The best performance-weight ratio of the bunch.

(e) FA 80-160mm

- A great lens at a reasonable price. Overall performance with the 645Z is decent.
- At this focal range, very prone to vibrations. Needs sturdy support.
- Needs to be updated for future 80+MP sensors.


7. Suggestions for Future Development

Here are some things Pentax can do to make it better.

A. 80-100MP sensor

Practically, this will be ultimate resolution for the 645 system. All kinds of logistic challenges to go beyond this;
lenses need to be sharp corner to corner at f/4-5.6 to avoid diffraction and near-to-far focus will require tens of
different layers and extensive post-processing, which means it’s almost practically impossible to utilize this level
of resolution. One way to address this issue is to go with non-bayer, Foveon-type sensor. This will increase the
resolution by a factor of about 1.5 at the same level of diffraction.

B. Ultra-wide angle

Be a prime or a zoom, please make one. Personally, anything close to 18mm (14mm on a 35mm full frame) can
be really useful.

C. Mirrorless

I know it will look funky with the current flange-back distance, but I am up for whatever can shave off a pound.

D. Downsized lenses

Please keep the lenses light. Offer non-SR and not-so-fast variants designed specifically for outdoor photography.
The current system is almost unacceptable for any serious hiker. You will need to add about 20 lbs to the base
weight to carry 645Z + 25mm + 28-45mm + 45-85mm + Gitzo 1 series carbon tripod.

E. Live View

Zooming is fine, but moving to a particular part of the frame is not so smooth and too slow. This considerably slows
down the focusing process in live-view shooting.

F. Automated multi-focus shooting

Multi-focus shooting and focus stacking in the post-process are becoming an essential technique in many
applications. Implement an algorithm to do this. Please allow an option to be used in conjunction with exposure
bracketing; also let the photographer customize what focus range should be bracketed and what not.

G. Focus windows

Additional windows on the sides (or bottom) of lens barrels will be a great addition, so that the photographer has
complete information and control of focus at all times (you can’t check the focus when your camera is higher than
your eye-level). More precise and finer ticks will be very helpful as well. If there is a way to do this electronically
(show a number that precisely displays the current focus distance on the live view feed), it may be better.

H. More custom modes

Three custom modes (U1-U3) are amazingly useful, but one can use one or two more.


8. Acknowledgement

Personally, I am a consumer of practically zero brand loyalty. I take whatever is best for the job. My take is, a
preconceived notion of any company does not really improve my work in any useful way.

Given that, I want to thank Pentax and it’s engineers that have made these great products possible. The 645 system
held up my photography for the past five years, and it saved a number of images that might otherwise have turned
out quite differently. I am an engineer by training and I know how difficult it is to develop these low-volume, high
quality products and keep them afloat. And they have done an excellent job over the years.

Though I still do not call myself a fan (because that kind of rhetoric or mindset often hinders objective assessment),
I sincerely want to thank Pentax for the unconventional devotion to image quality, because it resonates deeply with
the principles I hold as a photographer. And I think I really need to say these things. Because I see something more
than simple business plans in these beautifully strange products.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-08-2015, 01:29 PM  
Long Lenses Side By Side?
Posted By pearsaab
Replies: 15
Views: 2,145
I just wrote a long thesis and it disappeared so i am testing this response before i do it again...maybe it was too long and the forum rejected

---------- Post added 12-08-15 at 03:35 PM ----------

ok try again. i got the da 300 and 60-250 and loved them. i got into birding and they weren't long enough. then i got the bigma and loved that but after a year i wanted a faster 1..then i got the 500 and gave the 50-500 to my husband. he still uses it alot. i heard wonderful things about the sigma 100-300 and 1 came on the forum. i use it when i need more range and not worried about WR. then my husband got me the sigma 300 2.8 as a present. so i use that when i need a faster lens in lower light. in regard to usage it would be the da 300, 60-250, 500 (which i also use on the q) and then the other fall behind. i occasionally use the 1.4 teleconverter. i have a hard time giving up any of my collection so i guess you can say i have a very bad case of lba ...hope this helps,,,i did tell myself to not touch the 150-45o and so far i have been able to stand behind that.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 12-08-2015, 09:27 AM  
Long Lenses Side By Side?
Posted By jatrax
Replies: 15
Views: 2,145
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 10-26-2015, 12:18 PM  
Studio light and Accessory comparison findings
Posted By Wired
Replies: 3
Views: 1,254
About 5 years ago I bought my first set of studio lights. After a lot of research I ended up with Elinchrom Dlite4 starter kit. I used this pretty much exclusively upto Feb 2015 when I had a light blow over while shooting outside and it shattered into a million little bits. Over the past 8 months I've used a few different lights, and for those looking for lights I wanted to write up something that could help make some decisions for those looking to get into studio lighting.


Lets start with my findings on the Elinchrom Dlite4 heads:
These are an awesome starter kit. The power range isn't that wide, but they will do for 80% of your shooting, especially when starting out. It's a very cost effective kit coming with a wireless trigger, stands, softboxes, reflector, and bags. They are also compatible with nearly all Elinchrom mount accessories. The downside is that they are multi-voltage and will mis-behave with battery packs from StrobePro/Adorama/Paul C. Buff, the biggest issue being that anything over 75% power and they will shut down. Recycle on battery is very poor, and it wasn't great to start with. You cannot quick shoot with these, but they are entry level. If you shoot them too hard they will shut down from heat overload. The hot shoe connection on the trigger is not very reliable (I've gone through 8 triggers) and they often need to be reset. I'm a bit harder on them as I use them on location a lot, but when they were confined to a studio for three years they were fine. The soft-boxes are entry grade, and while they produce beautiful light, they do rip and both are now held together with gaffer tape. The cases are probably the most durable part of the kit.

Flash duration is pretty long, and with the right setup you can trick the camera and triggers into high-speed sync allowing you to fire at 1/8000" without banding. However, this does not allow you to freeze motion (think water droplet/splashes) as cleanly as I would like.

In the used market these are average. I've seen the starter kit go, mostly untouched, for an average price of $600.

Pros: Very good price for an entry level kit. includes everything you need to get started. trigger is compatible with any hot shoe. current version allows power adjustments from the trigger. can use most Elinchrom accessories. Very nice cases. HSS option available with new trigger.
Cons: trigger and softboxes are not very durable. recycle time is long. Purple cast on white backdrop when they are getting close to over heating. High/Hyper Sync remote only available for Nikon/Canon.
Price: depending on sales anywhere from $800-1100

Paul C. Buff Alien Bee series:
I have used the B800 standard head and the B800 Ring Flash a bit, mostly the Ring Flash however. I also played with the Einstein, but not enough to warrant a personal review. The B800 is a really good value for USA customers, not so good for Canada or rest of the world because of the change in the dollar. You also don't get "in person service" due to the direct sales, but the online/over the phone customer service has been amazing. I admittedly only have the Ring Flash now, but I love it to death. Both lights will burn the retinas of your subject, especially the ring light, and they got a ton of power. Modeling lights got some kick to them too, so it helps close down the iris to get more of the eye color in your shots. The recycle is a bit better than the Elinchrom Dlite400 kit, and unlike the dlite they work very well with battery packs. Recycle does dip a bit, but not as bad as the EL lights. They are very reliable, but can be reach overheating limits.

The analog control slider on the Alien Bee's I both love and hate. I can really fine tune the adjustment to get exactly the light output I want. That being said, if I need to go back to a previous lighting setup it can be tricky to really dial it in the same as there's no digital readout on power output.

The Einsteins are the digital equivalent and are a very well spec'd light. But I have seen people put them into overheat protection when shooting them hard (ie fashion runway events).

One thing I see from everyone using them (myself included) is they do not use the PCB triggers. They seem to break fairly easily. I've been using the Elinchrom universal triggers personally.

Pros: Portable, good price, very good light output. Reliable. Works great with battery packs. Great customer support online/phone. Dirt cheap used.
Cons: Direct sales/service only. Ala-Cart pricing for triggers/stands/etc. Has almost no resale value.
pricing: $250+

Lightrein 700/1000 and 600i models:
Think of these guys as the Canadian Paul C. Buff, but with a very different light. These guys are not "budget" as you will be hard pressed to build a two light kit under $1000 even using the 400 series to start. These are very nice lights though. They use the "Bowens" mount which is very popular and easy to find accessories for. The big thing about these lights are they are bigger than the competitors, and heavy once you get into the 1000w version. A great value for what you get though. They are quick to recycle, have an incredible shot to shot consistency in light output, colour, and quality. I wasn't able to get the 1000w (the one I have the most experience with) to overheat which was nice, and I was cranking it hard. I found it worked decently with my battery packs as well. The 1000w does take a long time to recycle on battery power when shot above 75% power, but it does shut off and power back up so I expect that. These are great lights and are amazing for shot to shot reliability. Customer service is solid.

The 600i model has an integrated lithium battery which is very nice to use it on location, or even in the studio without having to worry about cables. I haven't used it, but people say great things.

Pros: very good value, popular Bowens mount, works great with battery packs, very good customer service. HSS available.
Cons: Direct sales mostly, some outlets. Canadian distribution primarily. High/Hyper sync Remote only for Nikon Canon. Alacart pricing without bags/cases and remote triggers. Rare sales for kit/combo pricing. Hard to find used.
Pricing: $575+

Profoto B1/D1 Series:
If you got the money this is where you should put it. These are simply the best lights I have ever used, but they don't come cheap. Recycle time is very, very fast even when cranked right up. They have very consistent shot to shot output and color. The built in reflector is very nice as it makes the light more direction. They are light and relatively small (I fit my B1 into my backpack with camera/lenses). However, you do got to rely on your local service for quality of service, and depending on how well they support the brand and carry the product. They do offer starter kits which are not a bad value compared to Ala-Cart, but they often include umbrellas which are nice, but I'd rather have boxes. Ala-Cart do not include cases or bags unless you buy the B1 kit. Everything Profoto is stupid expensive though, but I feel you get what you pay for. Your paying for reliability, quality of components and materials, as well as design...unless you buy the bags separate, which I don't know why you would.

The D1 has a 6 stop power range, while the B1 has an 8 stop power range.

The D1 plays well with portable battery packs and this may be a good option for you if you don't want to spend $3000 on the B1..which is about a $1000 savings if you buy just a D1 500w and a battery pack. The Profoto Triggers are expensive, but do allow power control remotely which is very nice. The B1 and TTL remote (for Canon/Nikon only) allows for high-speed sync as well as TTL which is a very nice feature. However, when using the HSS mode (on Nikon at least) the power cannot go below 8.0 on the power scale. Depending on what your doing this may be a detriment.

That B1 with integrated battery is just the best thing since sliced bread though... it really is. It's a game changer and has caused me to get a compact folding light stand for my bag as I now take it EVERYWHERE.

Pros: build quality, shot to shot consistency, internal reflector is very nice, HSS/TTL option available, very portable. Fantastic resale value.
Cons: Expensive. No, you don't get it, they cost a lot of money! Usually a special order product. Ala-cart pricing. hard to find used




So what about accessories?

I personally got a hockey bag full of modifiers from a few different brands. Now I don't find a lot of difference in quality of light from modifier to modifier. They all produce whatever light they produce. It's how they shape the light and how efficient the modifier is that makes the difference here. Some have a more feathered edge, some a harder edge. Some umbrellas spill light everywhere, some are more focused. So I'm not really going to talk about how the light is unless asked. What I am going to do is talk about construction and design vs price.


Pro-Master:
I primarily use their umbrellas. They are a good value and available locally. I have a few 60" ones that are great alternative to a comparable soft or octa box. They are compact and fold away very nicely and are cheapish. ($125 for the biggest umbrella in my collection). The fabric is very nice, not 100% rip resistant, but pretty good. There are loose threads at the tips, more than other modifiers, but I don't mind. The rods bend easily however as they are quite thin. I own about 10 of these and pretty much will use them exclusively once the other ones I own run their course.

Lastolite:
I'm not a fan of Lastolite. I have a few umbrellas, a soft-box (for speed light), and the Hi-Lite box, and really the only thing I would buy again is the Hi-Lite as it's a unique and amazing product. The umbrellas are built better than the Pro-Master, but mostly just finishing. The rods are thicker so they don't bend as easily, but the fabric is about the same in quality. The Hi-Lite is amazing though, and if you do portrait work and don't have a personal studio then it's a must buy. (it's an illuminated background that folds up like a reflector and pops out to a 8x5 softbox/backdrop)

Elinchrom/Rotolux:
I used to own more boxes and accessories for Elinchrom than anyone else, and I still use them often. The fabric isn't as durable, even with the Rotolux boxes, as some of the brands to follow, but they are very nice and lightweight. I find the efficiency may be a bit better on them as well, I don't find as much light drop as the competitors. The big key here is the Rotolux speed-ring which is a thing of beauty. The support rods for the box collapse into the speed ring and it just folds in on itself. Very quick and easy setup and tear down. Less strain on the edges of the box too so the Rotolux's I think will last a bit longer than the older style which is a force the rod into the ring kind of deal. Rotolux boxes also include fairly nice zipper cases too. The pricing is good, and they include speed rings! It's a hard decision not to make these my preferred box.

The front baffles mount externally too which I think is an easier setup, even though it means there is no grids you can fix to the front of them. Oh well.

The umbrella mount is also through the center which is a nice touch so light spread is within the reflector which is really cool. It's as "centered" as a umbrella could be when using them with the Elinchrome strobes. Then you get the nice two piece beauty dish where you can change the internal reflector depending on need. The pricing is very good too, not budget, but not super high either. I think they are the best value for the money overall. You can get speed-rings separate as well for almost all brands.

Lightrein/Lightools:
These boxes are hand made here in my home town. The fabric coverings and internals are just out of this world good. I have no fears of tearing or ripping. I also go a few of their basic reflector discs and umbrellas. The umbrellas are comparable to Lastolite, but cheaper. These boxes do not include speed rings, but for the most part they are not too expensive and made for almost every light you can get. The pricing is really good, and if you can get them on sale even better. I have 4 of their strip-style boxes and they have quickly become my favorite. So much so that I keep a light stand and a strip box folded away in my trunk at all times. (including speed ring and speed light adapters). The best part is they have the best grids I've ever used for every soft box, these are not cheap however, but make the light that much more controllable without hot spots. They come in a basic bag.

The big issue here is that the speed ring is pressure fit, and in my opinion the rods could be a 1/32 of an inch shorter which would really help with the ease of assembly. They are a bit of a pain to disassemble and I always feel like I'm going to rip it. The fabric stretches enough, but its a very strong stretch and it doesn't get easier over time. I think that's a testament to how well they are built though.

Even though the assembly and dis-assembly is a bit of a pain, these are my goto boxes. The construction alone is what keeps me coming back, and that is because I do a lot of on location shooting and I feel when I'm maneuvering outside that these have the greatest chance of surviving if I accidentally snag them on something.

Strobe-Pro:
I don't know who these are sourced by, but they have a genius design. The fabric is pretty meh, but the softboxes have an umbrella style deployment so you have a center shaft rod that the box collapses on like an umbrella would. This makes for incredibly easy setup and tear down. The boxes are very affordable, but the quality of materials shows. I've ripped a few. I also find the exterior fabric leaks quite a bit too. Okay for outdoors, but I wouldn't use these in a studio.

Profoto:
I've never used their softboxes. I instead opt for Elinchrom or Lastolite boxes with adapters. However, I do LOVE their reflectors. The unique part of Profoto is that the modifiers can "zoom" which allows you to control the hot spots and light spreads very well. The reflectors can go from a nice light feathered edge to a hard edge when zoomed, and the efficiency of the reflectors is out of this world. Even with the modeling lamp on you will see a drastic difference in light output. It's pretty incredible. The mounting system to the light is a wonderful clamp down as well which I really really like. However, like everything else Profoto, be prepare to spend a lot. I shouldn't feel like I got a deal buying a reflector for $375... but I find that as a very good price for a Profoto accessory.

The grids are very nice as well, and as anything Profoto the construction is amazing.

The softboxes still need a speedring when you buy them, so you will quickly be spending a fortune on boxes. I haven't used the, but the Elinchrom and Lastolites are more than good enough. I don't see a need in spending nearly triple for a first party.



Questions? Ask away!
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 09-01-2015, 08:19 AM  
Free 50mm Sears Lens for someone that NEEDS it
Posted By Dlanor Sekao
Replies: 29
Views: 2,089
I have a mint 50mm Sears Auto 2.0 lens that is simply FREE for the taking. I had it on Ebay and just getting tired of relisting it. Comes with both caps and takes nice images on my K30 and K3.....If You are cash poor , an aspiring photographer , or for whatever reason (other than LBA) simply needs it...... just post and its yours. I will pay for shipping........FREE.
Here is the Link..... Auto Sears 50mm F 2 0 Excellent Tested Auct 9 | eBay
Forum: Pentax K-01 08-29-2015, 06:36 AM  
Film shot entirely with the k-01
Posted By franvd
Replies: 14
Views: 2,037















You Tube



Forum: Lens Sample Photo Archive 05-22-2015, 11:59 AM  
Sigma 100-300 F4 APO EX DG
Posted By TenZ.NL
Replies: 83
Views: 27,784
I bought the the 100-300F4 together with the sigma 1.4 TC. The minute I got home I did a complete test (on tripod, 2sec delay) with and without TC: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tenznl/sets/72157626200136484

No problem at first, IQ with the TC was very good imho but when I started using the combo in the field (handheld) I was really disappointed...most of the time. Mostly the images were somewhat blurry but from time time it did produce very clean and sharp IQ.
So I tried over and over and really started to hate this TC but I wasn`t able to pinpoint the culprit. Finally, and this took me 2 years, it hit me...SR was messing things up. The body doesn`t recognise the TC so it`s compensating for 300mm instead of 420mm. Tested the combo with SR off et voila...a tad softer due too the TC but no more blur.


To make a long story short, the sigma 1.4x TC is a good match but beware of the SR. Don`t know if the Pentax TC is better but it does have the benefit of being recognized by the body. From what I`ve seen it quite good with the DA* 300mm F4 and the sigma is imho in the same league. Just checked the prices and the sigma doubled since I`ve purchased it and the Pentax is even more expensive here in Europe. Not an easy choice if I had to make it now. Best way to go would be testing them both before buying.
Forum: Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 04-02-2015, 12:04 AM  
Portrait Lenses again..
Posted By Nicolas06
Replies: 79
Views: 8,082
I don't konw wissink, but if you don't see the 3D rendering you don't need to especially pay high money for FA43... Well you can and the FA43 is a truely great lense but I wouldn't want to make you think you should buy FA43 is you don't see the difference say with an FA50/DA50 that are much cheaper !

Other than that, look for at the Rondec daugthers and the discussion that follow: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/122-lens-clubs/59538-fa-limited-club-516.html#post3208931

It seems that we are many to see the 3D/pop but also many to not see it. I wonder for what reason there such differences.

Anyway to go back to portraits lenses, you can take FA43 for large portraits. It is small an unobtrusive. You could also take FA50. To be the FA43 render better and what to say? Maybe you should try to look at a few hundred photos from FA43 and FA50 and look what lense you prefer in the end. That should not take you more than 1hour or 2. Beware through that FA43 is a bit temperamental, it can produce exquisite photos or soso photos, you have to learn how to use it. FA31 and FA77 are easier to master.

For headshoots and outdoor portraiture and general tele use, I would more advise something longer arround 70-90mm. This might be inconveniant for a full body portrait at time, but should provide great results otherwise. There you have DA70 or FA77 in particular. Again to really figure out for yourself, spend some time comparing the photos.

You can use flickriver for this, search the lenses in flickr or look for the lenses club here.
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