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Old Jul 17, 2009, 6:09 PM   #71
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Sarah, your tutorials are very thorough and I appreciate such care to detail.

As with any group of students there is a range of understanding of the subject. Therefore it is wise to ensure, as you do, that every detail is covered.

Those that are a different stage of understanding, can read ahead. Those that are unfamiliar will appreciate the fact that you break the tutorial into small steps.

Les
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Old Jul 17, 2009, 11:23 PM   #72
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Les-

Many thanks for your nice comments. Today I have been playing hooky a bit. I have been researching the info on the PTTL protocol, but I have also been shopping as well.

Today I made a big move. I sprang for the very attractively priced K-20 camera and the Pentax 18-250 mm lens to go with it. It was a big jump and kind of scary. So wish me luck. Now I am really dedicated to the Pentax Forum.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jul 17, 2009, 11:29 PM   #73
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Today I made a big move. I sprang for the very attractively priced K-20 camera and the Pentax 18-250 mm lens to go with it. It was a big jump and kind of scary. So wish me luck. Now I am really dedicated to the Pentax Forum.

Sarah Joyce
Congratulations, Sarah. You will love the K20 when you get used to it. I'll be interested in your impressions of the 18-250. I've been very tempted to buy it because it looks to be such a versatile lens for those times you don't want to get involved in lens changes.

Appreciate your taking the time to research the PTTL protocol. I have a tendency to take everything manual on my Pentax 540 flash because I haven't really learned to take advantage of the PTTL capabilities.

Paul
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Old Jul 17, 2009, 11:46 PM   #74
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Les-

Many thanks for your nice comments. Today I have been playing hooky a bit. I have been researching the info on the PTTL protocol, but I have also been shopping as well.

Today I made a big move. I sprang for the very attractively priced K-20 camera and the Pentax 18-250 mm lens to go with it. It was a big jump and kind of scary. So wish me luck. Now I am really dedicated to the Pentax Forum.

Sarah Joyce
Sarah,

You're welcome. I think you will love the K20D. I have the K10D and the KM and they are both great. I have never used the 18-250 but I have always been impressed with it's great range...from wide angle to telephoto. It would seem to be a lens that covers most situations.

I know I've been very happy with my Pentax equipment. Primarily I take pix of wildlife, special interest, vintage and hot rodded cars, trucks and motorcycles.

I use my 16-45 , 18-55 and 50 F1.4 for the vehicles and the 55-300 for birds and animals.

That 18-250 lens of yours could cover much of the lens coverage I get with the wide angle zooms and the telephoto.

I do wish you luck and it's great to have such a skilled photographer on the forum who is so willing to share her expertise.

Les

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Old Jul 18, 2009, 12:29 AM   #75
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Thanks, Les-

You are very kind. I hope I am not in over my head (it does not happen very often) with the K-20. But the price was just too attractive, and I had been looking around for a single lens solution. Thanks to Penolta's photo samples, the Pentax 18-250 mm looked really like a single lens solution that would work well in the long term. So wish me luck!

It may even help the flash thread. Have a great weekend.

Sarah Joyce

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Old Jul 18, 2009, 2:15 AM   #76
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Thanks, Les-

You are very kind. I hope I am not in over my head (it does not happen very often) with the K-20. But the price was just too attractive, and I had been looking around for a single lens solution. Thanks to Penolta's photo samples, the Pentax 18-250 mm looked really like a single lens solution that would work well in the long term. So wish me luck!

It may even help the flash thread. Have a great weekend.

Sarah Joyce
I recall when I first got my K10D I was absolutely amazed...and overwhelmed with all the possibilities of the camera. I bought a couple of additional Non Pentax manuals... Y. Bourque's and I think, the Magic Lantern guide. I spent many an hour trying out many of the features using these two books and the Pentax manual...reading about the features in the 3 books, then trying it out, then reading for clarification.

I would like to say that I know the K10D inside and out, but I don't. But I do know it well enough to get pictures, that I'm very happy with. It's a great machine, like your K20D and my K10 has expanded my photographic horizons considerably.

I think you will really enjoy your K20D and 18-250 lens. Have a great weekend.

Les
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Old Jul 18, 2009, 3:47 PM   #77
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Default The Pentax PTTL Flash System

As promised, today we will get into the Pentax PTTL Flash System. PTTL is Pentax's preflash based through the lens flash metering system. It is used on all current Pentax DSLR cameras. The last Pentax DSLR to not use the PTTL system was the Pentax DS model.

PTTL can automatically obtain the correct exposure for both camera mounted flash units as well as wireless slave units, provided the camera, the camera mounted flash, and the wireless slave are all communicating on the same channel. You can select any on of 4 channels at will. Multiple channels were made available to prevent interference with multiple Pentax DSLR cameras operating in the same shooting venue.

Naturally, Pentax branded flash units, with the exception of the AF-200FG, are designed to take full advantage of the Pentax PTTL Flash System. Metz, and Sigma also make flash units to work with the Pentax PTTL Flah System.

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Old Jul 18, 2009, 3:50 PM   #78
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Default Flash Power of Some Flash Units that are PTTL Capable

Here is a chart showing Relative Flash Power at the Narrowest Zoom Setting.

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Old Jul 18, 2009, 4:02 PM   #79
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Default The Pentax PTTL Flash System

The essential element of Pentax's PTTL Flash System is its ability to control flash units remotely, not just as dumb slaves, but with co-ordinated exposure information, even wirelessly.

There are two required components for multi flash operations. There must be a Master or Controlling flash unit and one or more, off the camera, wireless slave flash units. Every current Pentax DSLR camera can make use of the Pentax PTTL Flash System, even the low priced KM or K-2000 camera.

Nikon's high praised 1-TTL wireless flash system is more sophisticated, but it will not work with their low priced DSLR cameras such as the D-40 and D-60 cameras.

Keep in mind that the AF-200FG flash unit cannot effectively utilize the Pentax PTTL Flash System. However, the Pentax AF-360 FGZ and the AF-540 FGZ can act as both Controller/Master unit or at will, as a Slave flash unit.

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Old Jul 18, 2009, 4:43 PM   #80
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Default Deciding on a Flash Unit

It is interesting to note, when reading through reviews on these flash units that most Pentaxians like and use the Petax AF-360FGZ a lot. When you begin to look at reviews for the AF-540FGZ model flash unit, the enthusiasm seems to fall off measurably. I even found a case of a user who first bought the AF-540 flash unit and was displeased so he returned the AF-540 and replaced the AF-540 flash unit with 2 AF 360 flash units and was as happy as a clam.

For those folks who want a higher flash output flash unit, they usually end up with the Metz 58 AF-1 flash unit which currently sells for $(US) 399.90 at www.amazon.com and www.adorama.com.

For those users that want both high flash unit output and a lesser price, most gravitate to the Sigma EF-530DG flash. It sells for $(US)239.00 at both amazon and adorama.

Those are the flash units in the mainstream market. Soligar and Promaster also make flash units that can work with the Pentax PTTL Flash System, but these flash units do not receive high review scores at all.

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