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Ricoh GR: Dust on the sensor

I really like the Ricoh GR camera (1.5 crop, 16MP), but I admit it has problems.

For example, the dust on the sensor, which appeared and disappeared. And now I see two dust particles that are visible in the image of the sky.

Example of the entire image, f/5.6 (common landscape aperture):

A cropping of these two dust particles from the upper right corner:

Seems like a small thing, but when you see it regularly, it's annoying. I have to remove them programmatically, as I have no desire to disassemble the camera to clean the sensor.

It is especially unfortunate that the problem of dust on the sensor remains with the Ricoh GR III, which attracts new features. The "Dust Removal II" cleaning is of little use.


Sony F35: Digital cinema camera with non-square, non-Bayer pixels (2008)

The Sony F35 is Sony's first digital Super 35 (23.6x13.3 mm, 16:9) video/cinematography camera (2008).

Its special feature is that it uses non-Bayer filters for the pixels of  the CCD sensor. Moreover, the pixels are not square (to maintain the 16:9 aspect ratio of the output video).

The true sensor resolution is 5760 (1920x3) x 2160 (1080x2) pixels (about 12MP total). A group of 6 (3x2) pixels gives one pixel output. Therefore, the video resolution is 1920x1080 (FullHD).

The six sensor pixels (generating one output pixel) contain two sets of three R, G, B pixels. This makes it possible to avoid Bayer interpolation. Full RGB color reconstruction is straightforward.

This was an attempt to compete with 3CCD systems, which use a complex optical system with image decomposition on three monochrome (R, G, B) sensors, but the flange focal distance is too large to use some cinema lenses and the optical quality is not good enough.

This idea of the Sony F35 sensor was not continued.


Angara, Irkutsk (June 2006)

A transmission tower on a small island in the Angara River, Irkutsk, June 2006.

The Pentax *ist Ds DSLR (1.5 crop, 6MP) with the Pentax A 50/1.7 lens.

Also a black and white photo taken on BW400CN film, 2006.

The Pentax Z-1 SLR with an unknown lens.

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Mosler Photoguard 35/2.8 and Tokina Wide Angle 35/2.8 (preset)

I still like the rare Mosler Photoguard 35/2.8 (first preset version). That's why I keep looking for information about it.

(on the right)

"Lens made in Japan":

I had heard that it was a Tokina (made by Tokyo Koki), and it can be confirmed.

Tokyo Koki 35mm f/2.8 W. Tokina (Wide Tokina) preset (source):

The Mosler is a copy of this Tokina. Even the big flat screw head on the focus ring is there (I thought it was a repair replacement on my copy only).

The Tokina was also known as the Lucky-Tokina:

The Minetar [Wide Angle]:

The Palinar [Wide Angle] (source):

The Hanimex [Wide Angle]:

The Soligor (source):

The Vemar [Wide Angle] (source):

The Cunor [Wide Angle]:

The Super-Lentar [Wide Angle]:

The PrinzGalaxy:

Similar design and lettering, T-mount, 8 aperture blades f/2.8-22, 49mm filter thread.

But I can't find the optical design of this lens. Supposedly there are 6 elements. Maybe the design is similar to, for example, the Konica Hexanon 35mm f/2.8 (preset). 6 elements in 5 groups (a descendant of the Angénieux retrofocus):

Or it could be completely different.

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A town in the taiga (Angarsk, 1957): higher resolution version

I showed the article "A town in the taiga" about Angarsk. It is an electronic version that can be found on the Internet. But the quality of the image is rather poor.

I found and bought the paper version of this magazine (from 1957).

And here is a scan in better quality:

And the photo by itself.

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Sony a7c: My menu and Fn settings

The main menu (called by pressing the Menu button) of the Sony a7c camera is quite difficult to understand and use. There are illogical organization and terms that are not always clear.

But this problem is solved by setting up the "My Menu" section of the main menu and the menu called by the Fn button. This is very convenient.

I use four of my menus in total:

1. Connectivity

Airplane Mode - it is faster to control the airplane mode than to toggle FTP transfer state directly.
FTP Transfer Func.
Bluetooth Settings - to use with the Bluetooth remote control.
Ctrl w/ Smartphone - control with the mobile application (I don't use it now)

2. Video

Video: File Format
Video: Record Setting
NTSC/PAL Selector - to switch between 60/30/24 and 50/25 fps
Video: USB Streaming
Gamma Disp. Assist - useful when using a Picture Profile

3. Display

Peaking Setting
Zebra Setting
Monitor Brightness
Display Quality
Viewfinder Bright.
Photo: Finder Frame Rate

4. General

Cleaning Mode
Format - it is easier to format the SD card than to remove all media using the main menu.
Volume Settings
APS-C/Super 35mm

And my Function (Fn) Menu settings:

1. Photo

Drive Mode
Focus Mode
Focus Area
Picture Profile
Metering Mode

White Balance
ISO Auto Min. Shutter Speed
SteadyShot Focal Length
Photo: Silent Shooting
Shoot Mode

2. Video

Audio Record Level
(as Photo) Focus Mode
(as Photo) Focus Area
(as Photo) Picture Profile - it is a powerful tool to control Gamma and Color Mode for video recoding.
(as Photo) ISO
(as Photo) Metering Mode

(as Photo) White Balance
Steady Shot Adjust
(as Photo) SteadyShot Focal Length
(as Photo) SteadyShot
Touch Operation
(as Photo) Shoot Mode

I also defined the Fn button to start FTP transfer in the view mode.


Industar-61L/Z-MC 50/2.8

Индустар-61Л/З-MC (Industar-61L/Z-MC) 50/2.8:

This is the first lens I ever bought. Before that, I got lenses for free.

I used the lens quite often on my Pentax *ist Ds. In fact, it was the main lens on this DSLR for the first time.

It's much more usable than the Индустар-50/50-2 (Industar-50/50-2), but I can't call the image quality very good. Although this copy is good.

Now I use the Pentax K 50/4 Macro (also Tessar type, 4 elements in 3 groups) instead.

The Pentax K 50/4 Macro is better both optically and mechanically, it gives more magnification (up to 1:2).

(at the minimum focusing distance)

And the difference between f/2.8 and f/4 doesn't matter for the task at hand.

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Hyundai/KIA Premium Gasoline Engine Oil SAE 5W-20 (API SL/ILSAC GF-3)

The Hyundai/KIA Premium Gasoline Engine Oil SAE 5W-20, just API SL/ILSAC GF-3, 4L (05100-00421):

I prefer this old engine oil to the imitations available today that only pretend to meet specifications. At least, the oil is suitable for the M13A engine of my Suzuki Jimny.

And I still use xW-20 oils.

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Mitakon Creator 85/2 II vs Vivitar 85/1.8

I have two Chinese 85mm manual focus lenses: the Mitakon [Zhongyi] Creator 85/2 II and the Vivitar [OEM] 85/1.8 (see also). Both are Nikon-F mount without electronics and without aperture actuator, the aperture is controlled directly by a ring.

The Vivitar on the left, the Mitakon on the right:

Both have 6 elements in 6 groups ("separated" Planar). This is a rare optical design.

The Mitakon:

The Vivitar:

(the text information about the design is wrong)

I tried both lenses (on my 24MP FF Sony a7c) and came to the following conclusions:

1. The Vivitar (available under several names as OEM) is noticeably cheaper.

2. There is no quality control. The Vivitar, I think, can't focus to infinity (only a thinner adapter helps). The Mitakon has a tilted focal plane.

3. The Mitakon is more comfortable to operate, the focus ring and the aperture ring are more convenient. The Vivitar's very strange aperture scale is uncomfortable.

4. The Mitakon has a built-in hood. The Vivitar has a detachable hood (comes with the lens).

5. Both lenses have a 55mm filter thread. But the Vivitar only comes with a 72mm cap for the hood. You should find a 55mm cap if you don't want to use the hood.

6. The Mitakon is slightly larger.

7. The Mitakon weighs 365 grams (without caps), the Vivitar weighs 292 grams (without the hood and caps).

8. The Vivitar has only 6 aperture blades, while the Mitakon has 10.

9. The angle of view of the lenses is virtually the same.

10. Resolution in the center is about the same, but on the edges and especially in the corners the Vivitar is noticeably better.

11. The vignetting of the Mitakon is stronger than that of the Vivitar.

12. The Vivitar's distortion is almost unnoticeable. The Mitakon has a little barrel distortion.

13. Both lenses have a rather long minimum focusing distance (80-90cm). This results in poor macro capabilities (magnification about 1:8, x0.125). But the Vivitar has a little more magnification.

14. Both lenses have noticeable longitudinal chromatic aberrations (see Vivitar's example).

15. The Mitakon produces better sunstars than the Vivitar.

16. At the same shutter speed and ISO, the Vivitar at f/1.8 is about 0.3EV brighter (in RAW converter) than the Mitakon at f/2.

17. With the same white balance settings the Mitakon has a greenish cast or the Vivitar has a purple cast.

Everything looks like the Mitakon is more comfortable, but the image quality is better with the Vivitar. Still, I want to compare the out-of-focus area blur in more detail. This could be a meaningful difference.


Eastern Sayan (August 2006)

The Eastern Sayan (Sayan Mountains). August 2006. The horizontal panorama:

Higher resolution:  6478x2844 4395.5KB

Image albums:


3" LCD Magnifier on Samsung NX300

I once bought an LCD magnifier (3" x2.8) for my Samsung NX500. But I never used it.

Now the Samsung NX300 cannot be used outdoors because of the AMOLED problem and the lack of a viewfinder. So I decided to try on this magnifier as a possible solution to the problem.

Unfortunately, the frame of the magnifier is too small for the wider 3.3" screen of the Samsung NX300. I will look for another solution.


JDM Suzuki Jimny recalls (JB23W, JB33W, JB43W, JB64W, JB74W)

JDM Suzuki Jimny [Wide/Sierra] recalls.

1998-2018 (JB23W, JB33W, JB43W) and 2018-... (JB64W, JB74W) generations.

Source (in Japanese language):

JB64W-202124 ~ JB64W-205521
JB74W-138880 ~ JB74W-139603

JB64W-100092 ~ JB64W-112388
JB74W-100036 ~ JB74W-102725

JB64W-100092 ~ JB64W-181143
JB74W-100036 ~ JB74W-130721

JB64W-164514 ~ JB64W-164863
JB74W-124721 ~ JB74W-124947

JB64W-159617 ~ JB64W-16767

JB23W-695655 ~ JB23W-782034
JB43W-560904 ~ JB43W-584701

JB64W-100092 ~ JB64W-121516

JB23W-741129 ~ JB23W-782034
JB64W-100092 ~ JB64W-117815
JB43W-581117 ~ JB43W-584701
JB74W-100036 ~ JB74W-105819

JB64W-111194 ~ JB64W-111356

JB43W-580544 ~ JB43W-580668

JB23W-680014 ~ JB23W-708971
JB43W-560008 ~ JB43W-562052

JB43W-200760 ~ JB43W-201107
JB43W-300004 ~ JB43W-300749

JB23W-516994 ~ JB23W-520773
JB43W-301139 ~ JB43W-301278

JB23W-100059 ~ JB23W-125412
JB23W-200010 ~ JB23W-208859
JB23W-210001 ~ JB23W-242251
JB23W-310014 ~ JB23W-348640

JB43W-110004 ~ JB43W-111374

JB23W-324514 ~ JB23W-324854

JB23W-100052 ~ JB23W-125380
JB33W-100057 ~ JB33W-115897


Sony a7c: my custom key settings

On the Sony a7c, I first map the down button to invoke the magnification of the focus area (needed to work with my non-electronic lenses). But this button is not handy to press.

Since the a7c has only a few buttons (and "Custom" is assigned by me to lock the exposure), I decided to compromise with the video recording button. I always switch to video mode, I never start video recording from photo mode.

So I assigned the focus magnifier to the video/movie button:

In video mode it is similar (inheritance behavior):

But to start recording in video mode with the main shutter button, you need another setting:

I also use ftp transfer a lot. It is available in my user menu. But even more convenient is the assignment of Fn in view mode:

After that, the button mapping of the Sony a7c is fine with me.

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UAZ-31512 and earlier thoughts on clutch booster

When I drove the UAZ-31512, I did not like many aspects, but I was particularly annoyed by the stiff clutch pedal (and this after cars with automatic transmission).

So much so that I thought about installing some kind of booster. Since the clutch control is hydraulic, the idea was to use a hydrovac brake booster from Moskvich-412.

Especially since I already had that booster. But then I realized that it makes no sense to upgrade this UAZ. The idea stayed just an idea.

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