Sunday, February 25, 2007

By popular demand: Pentax DA 70mm Limited compared to FA 77mm

Back in October 2006, I had the opportunity to try the newly introduced DA 70mm f/2.4 Limited "Pancake" lens along with the legendary FA 77mm f/1.8 Limited. I posted some sample images from both lenses in the Pentax SLR forum at DPreview.

The images were lost when I switched to another ISP. Upon request, I decided to repost them with the (edited) comments I wrote about these two fine lenses.

  • The DA 70 is way smaller and lighter than the FA 77. It totally deserves the pancake appellation.
  • The DA 70 is a tiny bit sharper wide open than the FA 77 at f/2.5.
  • There is some purple fringing with the FA 77, none with the DA 70.
  • AF is very fast and quiet with the DA 70, fast (but noisy) with the FA 77.
  • The FOV difference between 70mm and 77mm is more important that I was expecting.
  • Stopped at f/2.4, the FA 77 seems to expose about 1/3 stop faster than the DA 70 set to the same aperture and the DOF is narrower, which makes me think that the DA 70 is closer to f/2.8 than the claimed f/2.4 wide open.
  • As for bokeh, I will let you judge. The topic is just too suggestive and too controversial.

Pictures were taken with K100D (raw), processed with Adobe ACR. No other adjustments then resizing for the web.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

K10D Adobe ACR 3.7 Calibration

I calibrated ACR 3.7 to my K10D using the ACR Calibrator script (you need to edit the script so then it works with ACR 3.7).

Here are the values:

Shadow Tint-3
Red Hue-14
Red Saturation+22
Green Hue-6
Green Saturation+6
Blue Hue+13
Blue Saturation-5

I wouldn't recommend to use these values "as is" but as starting point if you can't do your own calibration (you need the Calibrator script and a GretagMacBeth Color Checker).

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Brazos Bend State Park

I took my K10D (with FA 31, FA 77 and DA 21) and D200 (with AF-D 80-200mm f/2.8) to Brazos Bend State Park (TX).
K10D - DA 21mm f/3.2 Limited K10D - DA 21mm f/3.2 Limited
Nikon D200 - Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8 AF-D
Nikon D200 - Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8 AF-D
Nikon D200 - Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8 AF-D
Nikon D200 - Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8 AF-D

Cows Limited

K10D with FA 77mm Limited and DA 21mm Limited. There lenses are fantastic!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Testing K10D and K100D Shake Reduction

Quick and dirty test to evaluate how SR performs with the K10D and K100D. Lots of people are asking me about SR performance and I wanted to provide a bit more than just my suggestive evaluation.

I used the Pentax DA 50-200mm for this test. For reference, I also added 3 shots from Nikon D200 with Nikkor AF-D 80-200mm f/2.8 (obviously, no SR).

All shots were hand held (duh!) and taken at 200mm ISO 400 f/8 and around 1/5s. Yes, it's over 5 stops below the minimum recommend shutter speed!

I took exactly and only 3 images with SR OFF followed by exactly and only 3 images with SR ON. I didn't discard any image.

In short: SR works great and has been improved in the K10D over that in the K100D, as claimed by Pentax.

(click on the image to see it full size)

My Olympus E-1 Gallery

I really enjoyed using this fantastic camera. If only Olympus had released a couple of fast wide, normal and portrait prime lenses... Well, Pentax did it so farewell to the Oly E-1.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Pictures are back online!

That wasn't too bad. Good thing I backup everything ;-)

K10D + jpeg + FA 50mm f/1.4 wide open = ...

I never shoot jpeg, but I was curious to see how "bad" the jpeg mode was with the K10D. (I am being sarcastic, K10D jpeg is great).

To make things worse, I used the FA 50mm f/1.4 wide open.

You tell me ;-)

K10D 1/250 f/1.4 ISO 100 - FA 50mm f/1.4

Full image:

1:1 Crop (center)

1:1 Crop (edge)

Pictures are gone...

Sorry for that!

I recently relocated to Texas from Colorado and I had to switch to another ISP. This is why all the pictures are gone :-(

I will try to fix that as soon as I can.