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Old Aug 3, 2006, 7:30 AM   #11
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John Hill,

Don't feel bad, I have the same problem. I see only two solutions, one is to concentrate on the focus screen and adjust very carefully (something I am not good at), the other is to stop down to the point wher depth of field produces reasonable sharp images (which of course defeats the purpose of those fast MF primes). It is a dilemma, my only advice is get lots of practice and maybe it will improve.

I tried a split image focus screen which had a huge split image section, but I found it too distracting (and it caused occasional minor AF errors) so I put it away and went back to the beep and adjust method. The same source in China also makes a screen cut down from a Minolta X700 part. It looks like a better choice since Minolta's of that vintage had excellent viewfinders with very bright screens.

BTW if you try changing focus screens on a DL, beware, there is a small brass shim or spacer that can fall out and is difficult to replace. When this happened to me I sat there in shock (I live very far from any repair facility and as a result would be without my camera for a very long time), finally I got it all back together properly, but I will not be changing focus screens again for a while.

Ira
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Old Aug 3, 2006, 10:16 AM   #12
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For the OP- Lately, I've been manually selecting the AF point with AF lenses on my DS. There is a setting that allows this but I don't have the camera with me so I can't tell you the exact command. This setting allows me to use the 4-way pad to move the AF point around the screen until I get to the subject I want to be the pointin focus. I also set the OK button up to center the focus point so I could quickly move back to center if needed.

I started using this method because with the center focus and recompose method, I found that the thing I wanted in focus often didn't stay in focus when I recomposed the image.

I also set up the exposure to meter from the AF point so the target is both in-focus and properly exposed. This isn't a fix for all AF and exposure woes but seems to work better for me in most situations.

None of this will work with non-A lenses (and A lenses not on the A setting)as center weighted metering and center pointfocus indicationare the only options available, as I recall. Recommend you read through your manual carefully to confirm the above is true on your model.

RG
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Old Aug 3, 2006, 10:18 AM   #13
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I wonder what lens you are using that is causing you to have problems. Are you using an A or an M/K lens? If you are using an M/K lens and using Av mode, you are shooting wide open - the lens will not stop down to whatever aperture you have set on the camera (it doesn't have the electronics to do that).

I find my M 50mm 1.4 lens to be very soft (appears out of focus) at 1.4, so I'll always use the M mode on the camera and use the aperture ring to stop it down a bit to get a sharp picture. If you are using a really fast lens (A or M) that might be your problem - see if you have the same problems at other apertures with the lens you are using.

The final thing to do is see if you have the same problem with AF lenses. If so, then there could be something wrong with your individual camera (as hard as they try, there's always one or two that manage to get through QA). Let us know how it goes.
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Old Aug 4, 2006, 2:54 AM   #14
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Thanks Mtngal your comments got my gray matter working.

As long as I have had my *istDS I have never been able to see anything useful in the DOF preview mode. Now I think I can see why..



If I understand this function correctly it stops the lens down without taking an exposure, the book says it works in all modes. So I looked at this closer and by looking in the front of the lens and moving the camera on/off lever to the iris icon I can hear the camera make a little noise but the lens does not stop down (yes, I did check the lens was not set wide open). I took the lens off and looked into the camera while doing the same thing and I can see the little stopper piece move up and down as expected. Moving the corresponding lever manually on the lens stops it down as also expected but put the two together and nothing seems to happen. I wish it was a film camera so I could open the back and watch the action but rather difficult with a digital.



My test lens is the SMC Pentax 1:2 50mm that came with my K1000. Maybe there is something I dont understand?

I am not sure what to do next..:sad: I am sure the shop would give me a warm welcome but I think I have had the camera more than a year.






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Old Aug 4, 2006, 5:20 AM   #15
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I use fully manual lenses (M-lenses, wich probably is what you have if you got it with the K1000 body) this way (following the instructions in the manual).

Always M mode. Manual focus lenses without the "A" setting doesn't work in Av or Tv.
  • Choose aperture with the ring on the lens.
[/*]
  • Look in the viewfinder, you will now see a bright preview with the lens fully open, no matter what you have set the ring to. Focus manually to get your motif as sharp as you can
[/*]
  • Turn the shutter release button to the right, and get a DOF preview (the aperture stops down). If you have set the aperture ring to a smaller aperture (higher number) the preview will become darker, but also the DOF will increase.
[/*]
  • Now, in the viewfinder, to the right,you can also see an indication of over- or underexposure (-3to +3). Change the exposure time with the e-dial or the aperture with the ring on the lens to get the right exposure.
[/*]
  • Let go of the DOF preview (shutter release button). The lensautomatically opens up again to full aperture. Dont touch the aperture ring, keep the aperture you selected.Check focus again and Click! there's your picture. The body will automatically stop down the lens to the aperture you have chosen with the ring, provided you have set the menu to "allow aperture ring". I never use the AE-L button.

    [/*]
Kjell



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Old Aug 4, 2006, 5:35 AM   #16
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Thanks Kjell, I tried that and of course it works. I managed to confuse myself by reading that the DOF worked in all modes (but not with all lenses).




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Old Aug 4, 2006, 6:12 AM   #17
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Thanks Kjell, I didn't know you could do that. With the AE-L button I sometimes got poor exposures, I figured it was because the reading was taking place too quickly to be accurate in low light. With your method this should no longer be a problem.

Ira
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Old Aug 5, 2006, 7:11 AM   #18
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i tried using the ok button today to do the focusing
it worked good
it was a bit awkward and took some getting used to
but it did work

i will keep trying
tilll it feels more natural

i also use the depth of field lever to see if the exposure needs adjusting
i just like the feel of where the lever is
the AE-L button feels awkward too

thanks guys

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Old Aug 6, 2006, 11:24 AM   #19
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Monza76 wrote:
Quote:
I set the focusing system to centre only which works fairly well. Sometimes, in low light, I set the autofocus to activate with the OK button, this prevent hunting for focus when I am trying to get the pictures.

Ira
Thanks Ira, and everyone else for the great information.



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