Pentax *istDs with M Lenses Stopping Down?

Discussion in 'Pentax' started by chazzer, May 7, 2005.

  1. chazzer

    chazzer Guest

    Perhaps someone can advise me if it is possible to get M lenses to work
    with my Pentax *istDs body at less than maximum aperture.
    I have been successful with A lenses and a mirror lens, but despite
    reading through the instructions several times I can't see if it is
    possible to get the M lens to stop down when pressing the shutter
    BTW I think the camera is great, and my old Pentax AF280t flash gives
    TTL operation.
    chazzer, May 7, 2005
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  2. chazzer

    John Bean Guest

    Manual mode only - it won't stop down in any other mode.
    John Bean, May 7, 2005
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  3. chazzer

    Gaderian Guest

    Diddo. Manual mode only.

    BTW. I went and spent the big bucks and bought the AF360FGZ flash :)
    Great results.
    Gaderian, May 7, 2005
  4. Chazzer-

    It is encouraging to hear about the AF280T. I was afraid to try mine
    since it wasn't listed on page 153 of the *ist-DS manual. Someone else
    questioned a possible voltage compatibility problem at the hot shoe. I
    intend to measure mine, just in case.

    As others have noted, the non-A lenses, as well as the A lenses when not
    in A mode, can only be used with the Mode Dial set to M, or their aperture
    will stay full-open during exposure.

    There are two other details that I don't think were mentioned. You have
    to change a setting in the Custom Menu for Using aperture
    ring=2(permitted), and you have to have the AF switch set to MF. See
    Pages 101 and 179 in the manual.

    Fred McKenzie, May 7, 2005
  5. Ditto from me, too.

    I believed that I needed to operate the DOF preview to stop down the
    lens in manual mode prior to using the AE-L button to take the meter
    reading and set the shutter speed, but others here say that just using
    the AE-L button alone is sufficient. I'll try and carry out an
    experiment tomorrow.


    Helen Edith Stephenson <helen at baronmoss dot demon dot co dot uk>
    Helen Edith Stephenson, May 7, 2005
  6. I recently bought a Hanimex 123.36A flashgun on eBay and it is dedicated
    for Pentax film cameras. I wonder whether it will work, too. I've also
    got a completely manual flashgun. It's quite old, and when I put it on
    an MX, it didn't fire unless I connected up the cable to the x-
    connector. (May have been a fault in the MX hot shoe, but I never
    ascertained that. It was a battered MX and I didn't have another flash
    to test it with.) When I got my first MZ-M, I got a little gadget which
    sits in the hot shoe and which has an x-connector on it for plugging the
    lead into. I'd really like to use it (and the old Centon flash) with my
    *ist DS, but I don't want to blow the camera up, so I haven't even tried

    I won't be going out and buying the Pentax flash specifically for the
    *ist DS as I can't justify the cost.
    Good point. I changed my Custom Menu setting as soon as I got my *ist DS
    home, and I'd forgotten about that. Setting the AF switch to MF is a
    fairly obvious thing to need to do with a manual focus lens, but I have
    to admit to trying to press the shutter button and having nothing happen
    as a prompter to pushing that switch to the correct position on


    Helen Edith Stephenson <helen at baronmoss dot demon dot co dot uk>
    Helen Edith Stephenson, May 7, 2005
  7. chazzer

    Gaderian Guest

    I've also had good results with the AF220T (TTL) on my D but I don't know
    about the DS. As for voltage compatibility problems, this is the first time
    I've ever heard of that with the D or the DS (time to google that subject).
    Gaderian, May 7, 2005
  8. chazzer

    Pete D Guest

    I use a 400FTZ it is good but it is huge. I have a 260AF in the mail so not
    sure what it will be like, only cost me 6 quid so I am happ to have a play,
    also use a Incablitz 280AZ and that has a pretty quick cycle time but I only
    use it in manual mode, it is reasonably compact but I am happy with the
    trade off.

    Had an experiment with an "M" lens and in manual mode pressing the AE-L
    button sets the shutter speed after stepping down the aperture just a little
    underexposed but works fine. I had just been setting it manually but wont in
    the future. This was on a K mount lens with aperture funtion, wonder if it
    will meter with an "S" lens? Will have to try, I have an old 50mm F1.8 lens
    Pete D, May 7, 2005
  9. chazzer

    BUNG Guest

    About Flash Voltage
    I am using an old 1972 National at 220volts & it works fine. I only
    tried it after reading this if a different forum. The Pentax forum I

    Hope this helps

    William Robb wrote:
    ----- Original Message ----- From: "Cory Papenfuss"
    Subject: *ist-DS Flash trigger voltage info (From Pentax!)

    I just got a phone message from a Pentax support guy. He talked with
    the engineers in Japan and has definatively found the safe flash
    trigger voltage. They say that the *ist-DS is safe for 480V, 1.26A

    There was a lot of mis/disinformation out there on that, so this
    should be at least one solid datapoint.

    I've always thought those concerns were somewhat overblown.
    I've used my istD with a Metz 60CT-2, a set of really old Normans and
    a somewhat more recent set of Photogenics.
    Amazingly, the darned thing just keeps working.

    William Robb
    BUNG, May 7, 2005
  10. chazzer

    Pete D Guest

    That is correct, also works for "S" lenses and with extension tubes.
    Pete D, May 8, 2005
  11. chazzer

    TW Guest

    Switch to manual mode, adjust the aperture ring to your desired aperture,
    then press the AE-L button. Certainly not the best solution, but better than
    throwing away my non-A lenses.
    TW, May 8, 2005
  12. chazzer

    Alan Browne Guest

    Not at all. There are some recent Canon film cameras that have a limit
    of a dozen volts or so. In the Canon 20D, it is 250V.

    What amazes me, is how few people read their manuals which usually state
    the limit very clearly. (Certainly is clearly stated in the Canon 20D
    and Maxxum 7D manuals.)
    Alan Browne, May 8, 2005
  13. Recently, I asked a similar question, and also got the answer of "just
    press AE-L to set shutter speed according to selected aperture in M
    mode" (not an exact quote, but the gist of the answer). When I try
    tried it, though, I found that it works "some" of the time, but not
    always. Sometimes I'd press AE-L and nothing would happen. So I became
    more curious, and more convinced the answer must lie in issue of the
    metering timer, which is mentioned cryptically in several places in the
    manual (including an option in the Custom menu to change it fromthe
    default 10 seconds to either 3 or 3). After some more experimentation,
    I now feel I understand pretty well what is going on.

    In short, pressing the AE-L button only works if the meter is on
    (otherwise, *nothing* happens). How do you know if the meter is on?
    The meter is on whever the viewfinder display is active (showing you
    shutter speed, etc). The meter is off by default, but gets turned on
    when you do one of two things - do a depth of field preview, or press
    the shutter halfway. The DOF preview also stops down the lens for the
    duration of the preview and shows you the EV value for the currently
    selected aperture and shutter speed. Pressing the shutter halfway
    neither stops down the lens nor shows you EV value. But either way, the
    viewfinder display activates, meaning the meter is on for the next few
    seconds, and that is the window in which you can then press AE-L to set
    the shutter speed for the selected aperture. Because this requires
    stopping down the lens again, it seems a waste to have done this using
    the DOF preview, so I recommend simply doing the shutter half-press to
    start the meter. By default, you've got ten seconds to do the AE-L -
    and you'll know times is up because the viewfinder display deactivates
    again. As I said, there is an option to change this time; presumably
    there is a battery life tradeoff involved. But once the meter turns
    off, simply pressing the shutter halfway again starts it up again.

    BTW, this of course is all regarding M mode. P, Av, and Tv modes all
    basically turn into the same thing when using a manual aperture lens: a
    sort of crippled Av mode in which the lens stays fully open at all
    times. People have been blowing this off as if it were useless, but I'm
    thinking this is a "bug" that could easily be seen as a "feature".
    Consider: the main reason I'd ever have my manual lens on the camera in
    the first place is because I knew there wouldn't be enough light to
    allow hand-held flashless pictures with the kit lens, such in poorly lit
    interiors, and my manaul lens opens up to 1.7. Well, in those cases,
    I'm probably going to *want* maximum aperture in order to get the
    fastest shutter speed I can. And Av mode works just fine if you want to
    take a series of pictures under these conditions. You still have to
    focus manually, of course (practically a given in low light even with an
    AF lens), but the shutter speed is set for each shot without any
    fiddling with DOF preview or the AE-L button. Of course, at 1.7, I've
    got hardly any depth of field, and am thinking that in practice, maybe I
    should have bought a *slightly* slower manual lens for this

    Marc Sabatella

    The Outside Shore
    Music, art, & educational materials:
    Marc Sabatella, May 9, 2005

  14. I Measured the AF280T with a fresh set of Alkaline batteries using a Fluke
    meter. The voltage between the center pin and the frame terminal was 7.6

    Fred McKenzie, May 9, 2005
  15. I was using an old PK lens this evening, and I've found that when I
    press the AE-L button without first stopping down with the DOF preview
    that the *ist DS stops the lens down all by itself while it takes the
    meter reading and sets the shutter speed.

    So operating the DOF preview is indeed unnecessary.


    Helen Edith Stephenson <helen at baronmoss dot demon dot co dot uk>
    Helen Edith Stephenson, May 9, 2005
  16. [snip]

    Yes, I agree with all this. You also need to press the shutter half way
    if you decide that you want to view an image on the back panel and the
    camera's gone to sleep.
    Well, I *do* use a 50mm f1.7 for this reason, and I've got a slightly
    slower 35mm lens as well, also for the same reason.

    The lens I most often use on my *ist DS is a 1970s-vintage Tamron 85-210
    and I use that because I don't own a telephoto zoom which covers those
    focal lengths and which has an 'A' position, so for me, it feels more
    like a "bug" than a "feature".

    Incidentally, the aforementioned Tamron 85-210 can be stopped down on
    the lens. I discovered this accidentally one day when I knocked the
    relevant lever into the stopped-down position after I'd owned the lens
    for well over 20 years:)

    I've been wondering whether I can utilise this feature of the lens to
    get it to work with Av mode, but so far I haven't tried it under
    circumstances where it's actually worked. (I tried it on a night shoot
    and presumably the meter couldn't get enough light to operate and
    calculate a 15-30 second exposure when working through the stopped-down
    lens. We agreed in here a week or two ago that the meter probably needs
    an open aperture to work when calculating those longer exposures.)

    It seems to me that if the lens is stopped down on the lens that it's
    functioning like a fixed aperture lens and it *ought* to work, just like
    my 500mm f8 mirror lens works. If I think about it, I'll do some


    Helen Edith Stephenson <helen at baronmoss dot demon dot co dot uk>
    Helen Edith Stephenson, May 9, 2005
  17. Also, focusing can be difficult through a stopped lens.

    Marc Sabatella

    The Outside Shore
    Music, art, & educational materials:
    Marc Sabatella, May 10, 2005
  18. chazzer

    Paul Mitchum Guest

    I'd really much rather be able to set an aperture and have the camera
    guess an exposure when I press the shutter, in Av mode. You can always
    set the aperture to 1.7 if you want, and also stop down to whatever
    you'd like, too. Low light isn't the *only* reason to put an M lens on
    your camera, you know.... :)

    If the AE-L button can guess an exposure after closing the aperture in M
    mode, then the camera should also be able to do it in Av mode when you
    press the shutter button. It's not a feature, it's a bug.
    Paul Mitchum, May 10, 2005
  19. chazzer

    John Francis Guest

    You're not thinking it through. In Av mode, you should get continuous
    metering, with an in-viewfinder display of the shutter speed that will
    be chosen when you press the shutter. The camera is physically unable
    to do that with an old lens mounted; it has no way of detecting that
    you might have changed the aperture setting.

    It's possible for the camera to work (more or less) in manual mode,
    because then there is no expectation of continuous updating of the
    exposure settings; once you've set the shutter speed, it doesn't
    change until you do something yourself to change it.
    John Francis, May 10, 2005
  20. chazzer

    Paul Mitchum Guest

    I wouldn't say *that*... :)
    I see your point. In Av, you want the camera to give you a shake warning
    light or some such, at least.
    Paul Mitchum, May 10, 2005
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