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Old Mar 17, 2007, 5:27 PM   #11
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Also you should try some "real life" tests - the focus test chart is not what you normally shoot, right?

Can try something like this: I grabbed some cork and placed it on the table, ISO800, 105mm, f/5.6, 1/40s. Photp was taken in RAW, can see before and after post-processing here:




And yes - it's overdone a bit

You can see the very shallow DOF but also the very fine details which seem to be missing in #1 - but they are there. It's a matter of personal taste (I for example like to have details) and you have to adjust your post-processing to that.

A digicam will give you ONE kind of postprocessing (ok, there are scene modes, but do they really differ that much at the end?) - if you are fine with that - lucky you. The dSLR gives you the RAW (as in raw) data to manipulate.

The dSLR can do this at ISO above 400, where a normal digicam won't give you that image quality. In bright light, with a good digicam (mainly I am asking for a good lens), the much wider DOF and the standard "make a colorful holiday picture" algorithm you'll get most likely a usable, if not good or great picture. The more complicated the situation, the harder for the camera and here is where a dSLR has better chances to get you keepers.

Happy snapping!
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Old Mar 17, 2007, 10:55 PM   #12
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Sorry I haven't responded sooner. I have been playing. Well, I have decided that the camera is focusing fine and I believe the lenses are as well. I have come unfortunately to the conclusion that the shake reduction is very poor. Taking some of the same shots with the K10D and the Panasonic FZ30 there is no comparison the K10D's SR just blows. I am going to send an e-mail off to Pentax but I don't expect a very positive response.

I also shot several shots of the same subject with and without SR and both show some minor blur. So the SR just isn't cutting it. That aside I think a small part of this is depth of field. You really don't get much depth of field with the small sensored cameras and I think I need to adjust to this, but I don't think this negates the SR issue, I think I am just expecting more of the image to be in focus and the depth of field doesn't always give you that. But, even with that the area in focus still show blur from the weak SR.

I also ran in to some exposure issues. I was shooting some dafadils in sun and they camera consistently blew the blooms out to a single color of yellow. I took care of this by switching to spot focus and spot metering mode. The same way I shoot with the Panasonic. So the exposure issue isn't a problem.

I can't honestly say I am 100% happy with the camera. I think Pentax hyped it a lot and didn't delivery everything they promised. I am however stuck and will have to see and hope if the adjust things in the future with firmware. Though their response have been yes we know of the issue but we don't plan to fix it, leaves me with little hope.

In the end while I will keep the camera I doubt I will ever buy another Pentax. I really wish Panasonic had done a better job on the FZ50 in the noise department as I would have been a lot happier with it.

One thing of interest, there is a night and day difference in feel between the K10D with grip and the Panasonic FZ30. The Panasonic while very hard to beat feels like a toy now.

Thanks for all of the information and help,

Robert
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Old Mar 18, 2007, 12:18 AM   #13
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There are definitely cameras for different people - I had owned an FZ30 for a month and didn't get along with it at all. I couldn't tell any difference between the various SR modes, I just couldn't keep it still enough to use anything beyond 200mm, even in decent light, and never liked the picture quality even when there wasn't any camera shake. I ended up selling it and deciding to get a DS, while deciding never to get a lens longer than 200. Not long after getting the K100 I bought an A*300 and haven't had any problems with it. Its interesting that Steve found a difference between the SR on the K100 and the K10, just me but I haven't noticed much difference between the two (they both work equally well - I've posted quite a few pictures taken at 300mm).

The K10 is still a popular camera - you could probably sell it and not take as big of a hit as I did when I sold my FZ30. Since I've been so happy with the Pentax cameras, I'd never suggest that someone keep a camera they don't like/can't get along with - sell it sooner rather than later.
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Old Mar 18, 2007, 1:35 AM   #14
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Robert Barnett wrote:
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the K10D's SR just blows. I am going to send an e-mail off to Pentax but I don't expect a very positive response.
Did you read my post? It's your Sigma lens problem, not Pentax. Try a Pentax lens or send an email to Sigma.


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Old Mar 18, 2007, 3:23 AM   #15
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Got to say one thing Bob, SR is not to be used when the camera is mounted on a tripod, it is clearly written in the owners manual.

Try shooting with SR OFF and camera mounted on a tripod and with an aperture of at least f/5.6-f/8. Then see if you are getting blurred sharp images.

I shot this to test my SR, both hand held and cropped.

You technically shouldn't be able to shoot at 125mm under 1/125sec without risking shake blurring, as is clearly indicated in the left image. The Right image was with SR on and it clearly shows the SR works.

You actually might have a unserviceable camera, I might suggest a trip to your local camera store to test out another K10 in the shop to see if there is any difference.



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Old Mar 18, 2007, 6:02 AM   #16
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Robert Barnett wrote:
Quote:
Sorry I haven't responded sooner. I have been playing. Well, I have decided that the camera is focusing fine and I believe the lenses are as well. I have come unfortunately to the conclusion that the shake reduction is very poor. Taking some of the same shots with the K10D and the Panasonic FZ30 there is no comparison the K10D's SR just blows. I am going to send an e-mail off to Pentax but I don't expect a very positive response.
Of course you aren't considering the scale of things either....

Th FZ's sensor and FIXED lens is a MUCH more controled situation.

Sensor half the size.... much less movement involved... a ONE known lens.

K10D has to rely on lens FL accurately reported and much more severe movement involved for the much larger sensor/imaging area.

Now I understand you physical problems.... but again SR is NOT a cure all... and the larger the sensor the more it isn't due to larger area and increased angles of corection..

But again you can be relatively steady to begin with it does quite well, in my experience.

Maybe you should just stick to the P&S format for your physical conditions.


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Old Mar 18, 2007, 7:04 AM   #17
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@Robert

I looked at your picture and noticed that the histogram doesn't look very good to capture the fine structure of the blossoms - hardly 50% (lower part) of the intensity is used.

Also the saturation is very high for this - can you have a look at your in-camera settings? Try to look at the saturation and use "0" at maximum - better step down to -1 or -2 here. It looks like a JPEG coming out of the camera with in-camera saturation +2, contrast +2, sharpness +1 or more and out of focus.

As for DOF - have you looked at dofmaster.com? The smaller the sensor (and the Panasonic sensor IS smaller than the one from the Pentax) the wider the DOF at the same camara settings. So your k10d gives you less DOF than a digicam, but still more DOF than a 35mm film camera! Also the distance of the subject changes the DOF. Have a go and play with the values!

As for flowers, here are two shots of orchids in my windows. Not the best light but I liked what I saw so I just snapped away. I include the EXIF information (can check in the pictures itself, too):

#1 - ISO 1600, 105mm, f/16, 1/60s, distance to orchid 50-60cm, DOF 1.42cm according to dofmaster



#2 - ISO 800, 105mm, same distance, f/5.6, 1/200s, DOF 0.5cm according to dofmaster



So you can see how shallow the DOF is when you use a rather long focal length zoom and stand close to your subject.

In bright sunlight, at 105mm, f/8, trying to photograph a person 5m away gives a DOF of about 0,7m (0,35 in front and behind focus point). Now that's ok if you try to get an "all sharp" picture, right? The same person 1.5m away - that's a DOF of just 6cm (3cm each in front and behind)!

Really - if you think your camera should give you pictures "right out of the cam", use ISO 800, color saturation around 0, bright setting. Then sharpness +2, contrast up to you, I prefer high contrast if I go for details (writings and so on) and low contrast for clouds and "fine blended colors". If you want a wide DOF go for f/8 and more depending on zoom and subject distance. My *ist DL2 will crank up shutter speed immensely before raising f-stop, even at a sunny day it is more happy with 1/1000s at f/5.6 than 1/250s at f/8. Since I know that I use Av or Tv mode (just like I did with my Minolta 35mm film SLR) and adjust to my likings. Then I snap away.

With the dSLR it's a bit more thinking BEFORE the shot and more post-processing AFTER the shot. If you just want to snap a colorful picture - recent digicams can give you great photos (I know from my Oly C770). Don't blame EVERYTHING on the dSLR.

I also agree with Crashman - don't use a tripod and SR at the same time and if SR doesn't deliver it's job - try another cam or let Pentax check it. Maybe it just has malfunctions. EVERYTHING crashes now and then - that's life.

If I had the money I would have gone for the k10d mate... give your camera a second chance, I am sure it can give you great photos!
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Old Mar 18, 2007, 2:20 PM   #18
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nosnoop: Yes, I read your post. I think the lens is fine for what it is and what it does. I knew buying it it wasn't going to be great. However, my complaint wasn't based solely on that lens alone. I am unhappy with the pictures from the Pentax 10-17 and the 18-55 as well. I am an equal oppertunity complainer. I may later consider breaking up the 28 to 300 range with two lenses.

Crashman: I don't generally use a tri-pod too much trouble to setup and takes up too much room. The focus test charts shots were the first time in a very long time that I used my tripod and for those I did shot with SR on using the tripod. I don't see where that made a difference. The probelm is that I don't try to shoot slow like you did. I just want no-blurred images in bright light was a desent aperture and shutter speed. Very seldom to do I get in to really slow shutter speeds. I am still not happy with the SR results. After seeing yours I am wondering now if there isn't something wrong with my camera. But, I can't figure out how to test it to see for sure.

Hayward: Yah, I know that small sensor on the Panasonic is a god send and a nightmare. It seems to cover up a multitude of evils while perpatrating several of its own.

thkn777: The flower shot I shared was edited in Photoshop to suite my taste and is not right out of the camera. I have included the one right out of the camera (resized for web use). As for my in camera settings I have saturation and contrast set at factory defaults with sharpness maxed out, I am in bright mode. As for DOF yah, I think that is something I am going to have to get used to. I am used to my shots from my Panasonic being all in focus and the Pentax only has some areas in focus and I am sure that some of my blur complaints is because of DOF field. I can say that since switching to spot meter and spot focus I am much happier with the pictures I get. This is how I shot with my Panasonic so that I had total control. I guess my hoping a $1000 dSLR would do better in the regular metering mode was too much to hope for. I can live with this. Very nice shots. BTW I printed my Dafodile shots on my HP B9180 at 8-1/2 x 11 (the largest print from a K10D picture so far) and it came out quite nice. I have no intentions of ditching the K10D, I have too much invested. I am sure that it is just a learning curve. As for SR and contacting Pentax, well I will shoot a couple of samples here shortly and get everyones optinions on it. I might send it in. I would have thought it would have been at least as good as the K100D, but it doesn't seem to be so maybe something is wrong.

Robert

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Old Mar 18, 2007, 3:22 PM   #19
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Ok, I just did some un-scientific lens testing. I compared the quality of the images from my 18-55 kit lens and the Sigma 28-300. The sample in this message has the top image from the 18-55 and the bottom image from the 28-300. I tried to get them to the same general size without zooming up beyond 100%. What I am looking out is sharpness and detail. Clearly the 18-55 blows the 28-300 away. Both images were shot at max. zoom on both lenses. While I expected the 28-300 to be a bit softer I didn't expect it to be this bad. The camera settings were Saturation and contrast at factory default, sharpness at max and in bright mode.

Robert
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Old Mar 18, 2007, 3:24 PM   #20
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Ok, this sample has the 18-55 image on the bottom and the 28-300 on the top. Again look at the detail and sharpness. Again the in camera settings are Saturation and contrast at factory defaults with sharpness at max.

Robert
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