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Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended

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Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by rannestad December 09, 2008 06:44AM reply | quote
posted by rannestad

I picked up an old Nikon D70 some weeks ago. Mostly due to the possibility of high speed flash sync, but I realized a beautiful side effect also. The noise pattern on this little thing makes some beautiful images at iso 1600. I used to think that the Canon's were better in the noise department back then, but this Nikon is BEAUTIFUL noisewise. Well, that's a different story.

The only thing lacking in the d70 is a good focusing screen. I am used from my Canons to be able of changing the screen to super-precision matte screens for manual focus.

I already knew about the katz eye focusing screens, but the split prism would probably be of no help for a lensbaby, so I contacted Rachel Katz of katzeyeoptics.com regarding this issue. No problem. They custom make the screens, so just write in the comment field "No prism" and they make it without the split prism, but still the super precision matte.

I received it today and installed it. Quite straight forward to install. Need a pair of tweezers and you are running.

And it works!!! Haven't made a lot of tests and still only have a couple of hours of experience with it, but it is very promising.

Just wanted to share this with you. I would recommend it to everyone that cannot get original precision matte as in e.g. Canon 40/50D, 5D etc. Don't know about the Nikon/Sony/Olympus/Pentax.

The katz eye is not the cheapest solution, but seems to be a great solution. Great customer service too.

Bjorn

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My website: [www.fotoaalborg.dk]
Blog (English): [www.retrofoto.dk]
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Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by BearWoodsDavid December 09, 2008 06:53AM reply | quote
posted by BearWoodsDavid

Bjorn,
Sounds great, how much does it throw off the metering?
David

David Akoubian
www.bearwoodsphotography.com

"Time is a wonderful healer, but a really bad beautician" - Unknown
Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by rannestad December 09, 2008 06:58AM reply | quote
posted by rannestad

BTW. Forgot to mention that I also have the 1,35x magnifier KPS. Have a look here:[www.yrkesfoto.se]

How much it throws the meter off? I haven't got a clue. The d70 do not meter with the lensbaby, so I haven't any idea. With AF lens on I guess there will be an offset in the metering (if any change at all), so you will probably just have to under or over expose e.g. half a stop or so. Just a guess. Write to Rachel Katz. She answers fast.

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My website: [www.fotoaalborg.dk]
Blog (English): [www.retrofoto.dk]
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Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by Craig (Admin) December 09, 2008 07:16AM reply | quote
posted by Craig

Hi Bjorn,

Great tip, this screen has been helpful for me too.

I have one of these in my D200 and the meter is accurate. I think that modern DSLRs use a partial mirror system to meter and do not rely on the focus screen at all.

-Craig

You could not step twice into the same rivers; for other waters are ever flowing on to you.
Heraclitus of Ephesus
Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by shurla5 December 09, 2008 07:28AM reply | quote
posted by shurla5

I purchased the split prism focusing screen for my 40d from Katz Eye and later took it off because I felt it made focusing harder. Wish I had known to order w/o the prism, oh well can't afford another $135.
Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by oliver tudoras December 09, 2008 04:47PM reply | quote
posted by oliver tudoras

interesting tip....

cheers

ollie
Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by JDenny December 10, 2008 05:49AM reply | quote
posted by JDenny

Bjorn - A Question for you or Craig: Did either of you opt for the OptiBrite brightness enhancement treatment with your focus screen from Katz Eye? If so, does it seem to really help? Thanks in advance for your response.

Cheers,
JDenny
Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by rannestad December 10, 2008 03:12PM reply | quote
posted by rannestad

JDenny

I did not get the OptiBrite brightness enhancement. I actually asked Rachel Katz about this. I was a bit sceptic to it. I mean, look at e.g. the screens for the Canon 5D, 50D etc. Canon clearly states that the precision matte screen is more dark than the original screen. There seems to be some connection to brightness and how precise the screen is.

Rachel actually confirmed this and said that the non-treated screen may be "slightly" better for manual focus without a split prism. With the split prism the case may off course be different.

So I would recommend not to do it.

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My website: [www.fotoaalborg.dk]
Blog (English): [www.retrofoto.dk]
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Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by Craig (Admin) December 11, 2008 04:29AM reply | quote
posted by Craig

Rachel did not steer me in the non-opti-bright direction so I got it. I did not find that my focus screen was easier to focus in general but it was a good focus screen and seemed brighter with stopped down Lensbabies. I should try the normal version of this screen for my D300.

-Craig

You could not step twice into the same rivers; for other waters are ever flowing on to you.
Heraclitus of Ephesus
Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by rannestad December 11, 2008 05:27AM reply | quote
posted by rannestad

Great Craig. Then you may enlighten us in this matter, based on real life experience.

BTW. I was surprised that the D300 did not have interchangable screens since the Canon 40D has it. Oh well, I guess that is not an important parameter for the competition.

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My website: [www.fotoaalborg.dk]
Blog (English): [www.retrofoto.dk]
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Re: Focusing screen for easier focus. Recommended posted by whitemiata December 25, 2008 09:12PM reply | quote
posted by whitemiata
Rannestad,

How happy are you with that KPS eyepiece magnifier? I was thinking of buying one off ebay but couldn't find any reviews.

Assuming that you're happy with it, do you have any thoughts as to wether it would work with eyeglasses (would you be able to see the entire viewfinder without having to move your eye around?)

Thanks!

Alessandro

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