Focusing with Manual lens


RadioX

New Member
May 18, 2010
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#1
Newbie here. I recently purchased a SMC K 50mm 1.4 manual lens to pair with my K-X. I do find focusing through the viewfinder often inaccurate and off-focus. Probably only 1/10 image is passable. Through the viewfinder seems ok, but the result after snapping is often disappointing. But when i try to focus using the LV, the focusing is much more obvious and clearer. After googling i realised that the magnification in liveview increases each time you press the ''info'' button. This greatly increases the chances of accurate focus.

But the technique don't seems very Pro. Others who doesn't know will probably assume that a noob is using a DSLR like a PnS camera. It probably will also increase the chances of shakes.

Is there other better ways to focus with a manual lens. Need advice from experts here. Pls dun recommand Auto lens, :nono: talking about old school manual now :think:

Thanks in advance.;)
 

sinned79

Senior Member
Jun 18, 2009
10,868
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0
Singapore
www.aboutlove.sg
#2
i dun know about your cam but for canon 5D, we can change focusing screen specially made for MF lens. :) I have no issues with my viewfinder for my OM Zuiko lens.
 

felixcat8888

Senior Member
May 8, 2005
9,289
19
38
52
Singapore, Singapore, Singapor
#3
Newbie here. I recently purchased a SMC K 50mm 1.4 manual lens to pair with my K-X. I do find focusing through the viewfinder often inaccurate and off-focus. Probably only 1/10 image is passable. Through the viewfinder seems ok, but the result after snapping is often disappointing. But when i try to focus using the LV, the focusing is much more obvious and clearer. After googling i realised that the magnification in liveview increases each time you press the ''info'' button. This greatly increases the chances of accurate focus.

But the technique don't seems very Pro. Others who doesn't know will probably assume that a noob is using a DSLR like a PnS camera. It probably will also increase the chances of shakes.

Is there other better ways to focus with a manual lens. Need advice from experts here. Pls dun recommand Auto lens, :nono: talking about old school manual now :think:

Thanks in advance.;)
Time for you to change the focusing screen . . .

http://wwww.focusingscreen.com

Go for the K3 type :devil:
 

Dec 22, 2009
426
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0
33
#4
Newbie here. I recently purchased a SMC K 50mm 1.4 manual lens to pair with my K-X. I do find focusing through the viewfinder often inaccurate and off-focus. Probably only 1/10 image is passable. Through the viewfinder seems ok, but the result after snapping is often disappointing. But when i try to focus using the LV, the focusing is much more obvious and clearer. After googling i realised that the magnification in liveview increases each time you press the ''info'' button. This greatly increases the chances of accurate focus.

But the technique don't seems very Pro. Others who doesn't know will probably assume that a noob is using a DSLR like a PnS camera. It probably will also increase the chances of shakes.

Is there other better ways to focus with a manual lens. Need advice from experts here. Pls dun recommand Auto lens, :nono: talking about old school manual now :think:

Thanks in advance.;)
Try using the catch-in focus ability of the KX, you can get more info of how to use it in the manual.

Basically, you can press down all the way on the shutter and slowly turn the focusing ring. You shutter will auto release once you are in focus. Really a very good function imho
 

RadioX

New Member
May 18, 2010
18
0
0
#5
Try using the catch-in focus ability of the KX, you can get more info of how to use it in the manual.

Basically, you can press down all the way on the shutter and slowly turn the focusing ring. You shutter will auto release once you are in focus. Really a very good function imho
Just tried your recommandation. Doesn't seems to be working very well. Difficult to maintain minimal movement while turning the focus. Must go very very slow. Can produce a much better result with 3X mag on LV.

Subject: My wife
Focus point: Pores :embrass:
 

Last edited:
Dec 22, 2009
426
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#7
Just tried your recommandation. Doesn't seems to working very well. Difficult to maintain minimal movement while turning the focus. Must go very very slow. can better a much better result with 3X mag on LV.

Subject: My wife
Focus point: Pores :embrass:
Bet you must be shooting with f1.4? Use a smaller aperture and see how
 

RadioX

New Member
May 18, 2010
18
0
0
#8
Bet you must be shooting with f1.4? Use a smaller aperture and see how
Just tested (subject still awake). The Catch-in-Focus really works better in 1-2 stops down. Does that means whenever possible try not to take pictures with aperture wide open?

But seems that 3X Mag + LV focusing is still more accurate, almost 100% hit rate. but cannot properly compose the image.

Thanks Brianskivvy for your advice.
 

Dec 22, 2009
426
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33
#9
Just tested (subject still awake). The Catch-in-Focus really works better in 1-2 stops down. Does that means whenever possible try not to take pictures with aperture wide open?

But seems that 3X Mag + LV focusing is still more accurate, almost 100% hit rate. but cannot properly compose the image.

Thanks Brianskivvy for your advice.
Yes cos the depth of field at wide open might be too thin for you to get everything in focus :) The catch-in focus is useful provided your aperture is not to big and when you need to take shots fast. However, if your subject is far away, using wide open is still possible as the DOF is bigger when your focus distance increases. Play with it more to judge for yourself.

Enjoy your KX :)
 

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scorpioh

New Member
Jul 17, 2007
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Woodlands
#10
Hmmm.. newbie here. Not so adventurous at the moment.:sweat:
Well, it's not being adventurous. It's about getting the right tool to get the job done/make your job easier. To at least make Manual focusing a delightful experience, you should get a 1.2x magnifiying eyepiece. The focusing screen is useful too. I am not so sure about the kx, but on my k10d, with a focusing screen and magnifier, my hit rate for a f1.2 wide opened shots is pretty high. Also, sometimes manual focus is about feel too. Your soul links with the camera and when you depress that shutter release, you'll know... Furthermore, alot of times, its not really about pinpoint focus, many great photos aren't exactly 100% spot-on focus.
 

Baracus

New Member
Mar 24, 2008
1,466
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The Far East
#11
Well, it's not being adventurous. It's about getting the right tool to get the job done/make your job easier. To at least make Manual focusing a delightful experience, you should get a 1.2x magnifiying eyepiece. The focusing screen is useful too. I am not so sure about the kx, but on my k10d, with a focusing screen and magnifier, my hit rate for a f1.2 wide opened shots is pretty high. Also, sometimes manual focus is about feel too. Your soul links with the camera and when you depress that shutter release, you'll know... Furthermore, alot of times, its not really about pinpoint focus, many great photos aren't exactly 100% spot-on focus.
Like Avatar? Is there a hair-sync slot I'm overlooking on my K10d? Do I need a hair-extension adapter since my hair is too short? :bsmilie:

Jokes aside, I have a split-screen + magnifying eyepiece combo as well. But spectacle wearers (like me) take note that the eyepiece further crops the view, meaning you have to move your eye around to see the full view. Not much of a problem since you're basically capturing more of the view, which you can crop later in post.
 

Baracus

New Member
Mar 24, 2008
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The Far East
#14
Like Avatar? Is there a hair-sync slot I'm overlooking on my K10d? Do I need a hair-extension adapter since my hair is too short? :bsmilie:
Don't emo lah bro. Nothing personal. ;)

I can see that you enjoy the MF experience as much (if not more) as I do. And yes, the feeling of getting your settings right is a joy, especially when you're shooting full manual. But it's just one euphoria below getting your film prints back, exposed just right. :lovegrin:
 

pinholecam

Moderator
Staff member
Jul 23, 2007
10,944
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#15
I've personally found the 1.2x magnifying eyepiece helpful.
The split screen is a bit of a mixed bag. It all depends on how well you can get it 'calibrated' between viewfinder and actual focus. I'm still using one only because I paid ~$100+ for one :(
(its a tenny weeny bit front focused and can be a pain at lower than f2)


Wah! Scorpioh you make MF sound very mystical and zen :D

I just like the more engaging and thoughtful experience with manual focus and aperture. Not just "ti-di" -> 'press shutter button' , "ti-di" -> 'press shutter button' , "ti-di" -> 'press shutter button' :D
 

creampuff

Senior Member
Jul 11, 2006
5,116
1
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Dover
#17
I have given up on my K3 screen (a little front focusing) and gone back to the original Pentax focusing screen. Gonna phase off all my manual focus lenses except for 3 lenses.
It's strictly AF for me, don't want to waste time missing focus too much. With Pentax Quick Shift, AF to manual focusing is seamless.
 

pinholecam

Moderator
Staff member
Jul 23, 2007
10,944
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#18
I have given up on my K3 screen (a little front focusing) and gone back to the original Pentax focusing screen. Gonna phase off all my manual focus lenses except for 3 lenses.
It's strictly AF for me, don't want to waste time missing focus too much. With Pentax Quick Shift, AF to manual focusing is seamless.
Wah! I wait eagerly at the BnS section ;p :D
 

Baracus

New Member
Mar 24, 2008
1,466
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The Far East
#19
I have given up on my K3 screen (a little front focusing) and gone back to the original Pentax focusing screen. Gonna phase off all my manual focus lenses except for 3 lenses.
Wah! I wait eagerly at the BnS section ;p :D
Fastest finger first!
Can it wait till start of next month? Have to wait for pay day first. :bsmilie:
 

creampuff

Senior Member
Jul 11, 2006
5,116
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Dover
#20
Wah! I wait eagerly at the BnS section ;p :D
Fastest finger first!
Can it wait till start of next month? Have to wait for pay day first. :bsmilie:
Got to make way for new arrival coming soon. So got to make space to fit into my little Dri-Cabinet, so must phase off all those gear excess to requirement.
I think once new arrival come my LBA will be complete. (OK that's what I'm psychoing myself) :bsmilie:
My Great Singapore Sale will start next week... :lovegrin:
 

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