First outing with my Pentax K-3 II

Battery fully charged this morning, it was a nice sunny mild day today in Ottawa.  The mercury touched near 5°, it was a good day to walk about in Centretown Ottawa. I mounted my smc Pentax-DA 14mm f:2.8 onto my brand new 24.35 megapixel Pentax K-3 II. My trusty 2004 6.1 megapixel  Pentax ✩istD is in semi-retirement, perhaps I’ll convert it to an IR camera. All the following frames are ISO:100 in DNG+jpg raw mode.








NIK HDR effect in post.




I am looking forward to exploring all the features the new camera has. First studio like test.


Now retired, my old Pentax ✩istD, cracked LCD screen cover and all. Shot with the pixel-shift mode that exposes each pixel 4 times. That feature creates a 107 MB file.



Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa, Canada

My new toy: Pentax K-3 mk.II

Arrived today..


The happy camper…


Samsung Galaxy Core LTE photo.

The old shot by the new… Now retired, my old Pentax ✩istD, cracked LCD screen cover and all. Shot with the pixel-shift mode that exposes each pixel 4 times. That feature creates a 107 MB file.




Developed as the successor to the PENTAX K-3 (launched in November 2013), a camera that offered outstanding performance across a wide range of field photography, the PENTAX K-3 II delivers exceptionally high-resolution images supported by such state-of-the-art technologies as an enhanced shake reduction system — the most highly effective in the K series — and a newly developed super-resolution technology called the Pixel Shift Resolution System. The K-3 II also features other renowned technologies, including: an APS-C-size CMOS image sensor with approximately 24.35 effective megapixels; an AA-filter-free design for high-resolution image reproduction; a high-performance 27-point AF system; high-speed continuous shooting at approximately 8.3 images per second; and a dependable dustproof, weather-resistant construction. It even incorporates a GPS module to perform various GPS functions, such as accurate recording of shooting locations and simplified, high-precision tracking of celestial bodies, to eliminate the need for an optional GPS unit. These outstanding features allow K-3 II users to enjoy advanced, multi-featured photo shooting with a wider variety of scenes and subjects than ever before.


Main Features

1. High-resolution images

The K-3 II combines an APS-C-size CMOS image sensor free of an anti-aliasing filter with the high-performance PRIME III imaging engine — identical to the one installed in the PENTAX 645Z medium-format digital SLR camera — to optimize the imaging power of approximately 24.35 effective megapixels and deliver sharp, fine-gradation images. It also effectively minimizes annoying noise generated at higher sensitivities, allowing high-grade, high-sensitivity shooting even at the top sensitivity of ISO 51200.


2. New-generation PENTAX-original shake reduction mechanism

(1) Upgraded in-body SR mechanism to assure the best shake reduction performance in the K series
The K-3 II comes equipped with a PENTAX-developed SR (Shake Reduction) mechanism that can be used with any compatible PENTAX interchangeable lens.* Thanks to its new, high-precision gyro sensor, this mechanism assures more stable, effective camera-shake compensation than ever before, with an extra-wide compensation range of as much as 4.5 shutter steps — the widest of all K-series digital SLR models. Even when taking a panning shot, this efficiently controls the SR unit to always produce the best image possible under the given conditions.


(2) New Pixel Shift Resolution System to deliver image resolutions higher than the image sensor’s capacity
The K-3 II features Pixel Shift Resolution System,** the latest super-resolution technology, which captures four images of the same scene by shifting the image sensor by a single pixel for each image, then synthesizes them into a single composite image. Compared to the conventional Bayer system, in which each pixel has only a single unit of color data, this new system obtains all color data in each pixel. This innovative system delivers super-high-resolution images with far more truthful color reproduction and much finer details, while significantly lowering the level of high-sensitivity noise. Recorded images can also be synthesized, either on a computer using the accompanying utility software, or with the camera’s in-body RAW-data development function.

(3) Innovative AA filter simulator to minimize moiré
By applying microscopic vibrations to the image sensor unit at the sub-pixel level during image exposure, the K-3 II’s AA (anti-aliasing) filter simulator*** provides the same level of moiré reduction as an optical AA filter. Unlike an optical filter, which always creates the identical result, this innovative simulator lets the user not only switch the anti-aliasing filter effect on and off, but also to adjust the level of the effect. This means that the ideal effect can be set for a particular scene or subject.


(4) Supportive shooting functions
The K-3 II’s SR unit has a flexible design that tilts the image sensor unit in all directions. This is one reason why the K-3 II can provide a host of handy shooting functions, including auto level compensation; image-composition fine-adjustment; and ASTRO TRACER, which simplifies advanced astronomical photography.

* Lenses compatible with this mechanism: K、KA、KAF、KAF2 and KAF3mount lenses; screw-mount lenses (with an adapter); and 645- and 67-system lenses (with an adapter). Some functions are not available with certain lenses.
** When using this system, the user is advised to stabilize the camera firmly on a tripod. When a moving subject is captured in the camera’s image field, its image may not be reproduced clearly, either in part or as a whole.
*** This function works most effectively with a shutter speed of 1/1000 second or slower. This function may not be combined with some shooting modes, including the Pixel Shift Resolution system.


3. High-precision, SAFOX 11 sensor module with 27-point AF system

The K-3 II features the sophisticated SAFOX 11 AF sensor module with an expanded image-field coverage using 27 AF sensors (25 cross-type sensors positioned in the middle). The center sensor and the two sensors just above and below it are designed to detect the light flux of an F2.8 lens, making it easy to obtain pinpoint focus on a subject when using a large-aperture lens. Thanks to the combination of a state-of-the-art AF algorithm and the advanced PENTAX Real-Time Scene Analysis System, this AF system assures much improved AF tracking performance in the AF Continuous mode, while providing an extra-wide measurable luminance range (-3EV to +18EV).

4. High-precision exposure control with PENTAX Real-Time Scene Analysis System

The K-3 II is equipped with the advanced PENTAX Real-Time Scene Analysis System, which is supported by an approximately 86,000-pixel RGB metering sensor. This system is designed to optimize the camera’s overall performance, not only by controlling exposure with great accuracy, but also by utilizing the data obtained by the light-metering sensor to further enhance the accuracy of autofocusing and white-balance adjustment. It has also expanded the measurable luminance level to as low as -3EV. By detecting the type of scene or subject using the RGB metering sensor, the K-3 II selects the exposure settings that are more consistent with the photographer’s creative intentions.

5. High-speed continuous shooting with a top speed of approximately 8.3 images per second

The K-3 II continuously records as many as 23 images in the RAW format, or 60 images in the JPEG format,**** in a single sequence. This has been made possible through the use of several innovative developments, including: a high-speed, highly accurate control mechanism that regulates the shutter, mirror and diaphragm independently; a damper mechanism that effectively minimizes mirror shock; and a high-speed data transmission system incorporated in the PRIME III imaging engine.

**** JPEG recorded pixels: L, JPEG image quality: Best

6. Optical viewfinder with nearly 100-percent field of view

The K-3 II’s glass prism has been treated with a coating that is designed to improve reflectance for a much brighter viewfinder image. With a magnification of approximately 0.95 times, its viewfinder provides a broad, bright image field for easy focusing and framing.

7. Full HD movie recording with an array of creative tools

The K-3 II captures Full HD movie clips (1920 x 1080 pixels; 60i/30p frame rate) in the H.264 recording format. It also comes equipped with a stereo mic terminal for external microphone connection and a headphone terminal. The user can even adjust the audio recording level manually and monitor sound pressure levels during microphone recording. In addition to a host of distinctive visual effects available for movie recording,***** the K-3 II also provides the interval movie mode, which captures a series of 4K-resolution movie clips at a fixed interval

***** When special image processing is required, the frame rate may vary depending on the selected special-effect mode.


8. Built-in GPS module

Thanks to its built-in GPS module, the K-3 II provides a variety of advanced GPS functions, including the recording of location, latitude, longitude, altitude and UTC (Universal Time Coordinated) and direction at the time of shooting. The user can easily access images containing GPS data using a computer, to browse them, check on shooting locations and position data on the screen, or save them.

The user can also take advantage of some unique tools, including: GPS log, which keeps track of the photographer’s movement; Electronic Compass, which displays the camera’s direction on the camera’s LCD monitor; and ASTROTRACER, which simplifies the tracing and photographing of celestial bodies by coupling GPS data with the camera’s SR mechanism.

9. Large, easy-to-view 3.2-inch LCD monitor with approximately 1,037,000 dots

On its back panel, the K-3 II features a 3.2-inch high-resolution LCD monitor with approximately 1,037,000 dots and a 3:2 aspect ratio. In addition to its wide-view design, this monitor also has a protective tempered-glass front panel for added durability, and a unique air-gapless construction in which the air space between LCD layers is eliminated to effectively reduce the reflection and dispersion of light for improved visibility during outdoor shooting.

10. Compact, solid body with dustproof, weather-resistant construction

The K-3 II’s exterior casing, consisting of top and bottom panels and front and back frames, is made of sturdy yet lightweight magnesium alloy. Thanks to the inclusion of 92 sealing parts in the body, it boasts a dustproof, weather-resistant and cold-resistant construction, assuring solid operation at temperatures as low as -10°C. It also features a dependable, durable shutter unit that withstands 200,000 shutter releases. Despite all these features, the K-3 II has been designed to be compact and maneuverable, assuring remarkable operability and swift response in the field.


11. Other features

  1. ・Dual SD card slots for memory card flexibility (compatible with SDXC UHS-1 speed class in SDR104 buss speed mode)
  2. ・Smartphone-support functions using the optional FLUCARD FOR PENTAX 16GB
  3. ・Top-grade DRII (Dust Removal II) mechanism for effective elimination of dust on the image sensor using ultrasonic vibration
  4. ・HDR (High Dynamic Range) shooting mode with RAW-format data filing
  5. ・PENTAX-invented hyper control system for quick, accurate response to the photographer’s creative intentions
  6. ・Model dial with a choice of lock mechanism engagement (ON or OFF)
  7. ・Compensation of various parameters: lens distortion, lateral chromatic aberration, diffraction, brightness level at image-field edges, and fringe effect (available in RAW-format processing only)
  8. ・The latest version of Digital Camera Utility 5 software is included

K-3 II Specifications


Type TTL autofocus, auto-exposure SLR digital-still camera
Lens Mount PENTAX KAF2 bayonet mount (AF coupler, lens information contacts, K-mount with power contacts)
Compatible Lens KAF3、KAF2KAF3, KAF2 (power zoom compatible),KAF,KA mount lens

Image Capture Unit

Image Sensor Primary color filter, CMOS. Size: 23.5 x 15.6 (mm)
Effective Pixels Approx. 24.35 megapixels
Total Pixels Approx. 24.71 megapixels
Dust Removal Image sensor cleaning using ultrasonic vibrations “DR II” with the Dust Alert function
(Standard output)
ISO AUTO/100 to 51200 (EV steps can be set to 1EV, 1/2EV or 1/3EV)
Image Stabilizer Sensor-shift shake reduction (SR: Shake Reduction)
AA Filter Simulator Moiré reduction using SR unit. OFF/Type1/Type2/Bracket

File Formats

File format RAW (PEF/DNG), JPEG (Exif 2.30), DCF2.0 compliant
Recorded Pixels JPEG: L(24M:6016×4000), M(14M:4608×3072), S(6M:3072×2048)、XS(2M:1920×1280), RAW: (24M:6016×4000)
Quality Level RAW (14bit): PEF, DNG
JPEG: ★★★ (Best), ★★ (Better), ★ (Good), RAW + JPEG simultaneous capturing available
Color Space sRGB, AdobeRGB
Storage Medium SD, SDHC and SDXC Memory Card (Conforms to USH-1 standards), Eye-Fi card, FLU card.
Dual SD slot Sequential Use, Save to Both, Separate RAW/JPG, Image copy between slots possible
Storage Folder Folder name: Date (100_1018,101_1019…) or User assigned folder name (Default “PENTX”)
Recording File File name: “IMGP****” or User assigned file name
File name numbering: Sequential, Reset


Type Pentaprism Finder
Coverage (FOV) Approx. 100%
Magnification Approx. 0.95x (50mmF1.4 at infinity)
Eye-Relief Length Approx. 20.5mm (from the view window), Approx. 22.3mm (from the center of lens)
Diopter adjustment Approx. -2.5m to + 1.5m-1
Focusing Screen Interchangeable Natural-Bright-Matte III focusing screen

Live View

Type TTL method using CMOS image sensor
Focusing Mechanism Contrast detection (Face detection, Tracking, Multiple AF points, Select, Spot)
Focus peaking: ON/OFF
Display Field of View approx. 100%, Magnified view (2x, 4x, 8x, 10x),
Grid display (4×4 Grid, Golden Section, Scale display), Histogram, Bright area warning, Composition Adjustment

LCD Monitor

Type Wide viewing angle TFT color LCD with AR coating, Air-gapless glass.
Size 3.2 inch (aspect ratio 3:2)
Dots Approx. 1037K dots
Adjustment Brightness, Saturation and Colors adjustable

White Balance

Type Method using a combination of the CMOS image sensor and the light source detection sensor
White Balance AUTO WB, Multi Auto WB, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Fluorescent Light (D:Daylight Color, N:Daylight White, W:Cool White, L:Warm White), Tungsten Light, Flash, CTE, Manual WB (up to 3 settings), Color Temperature Configuration (up to 3 settings), Copying the white balance setting of a captured image
Fine Adjustment Adjustable ±7 steps on A-B axis or G-M axis

Autofocus System

Type TTL: phase-matching autofocus
Focus Sensor SAFOX 11, 27 point (25 cross type focus points in the center)
Brightness Range EV-3 to 18 (ISO 100 / at normal temperature)
AF mode Single AF (AF.S), Continuous AF (AF.C), Auto select AF (AF.A)
AF Point Selection Spot, Select, Expanded Area (S, M, L), Zone select, Auto (27 AF points)
AF Assist Light Dedicated LED AF assist light


Type TTL open aperture metering using 86K pixel RGB sensor, Multi-segment, Center-weighted and Spot metering
Metering Range EV-3 to 20 (ISO100 at 50mm F1.4)
Exposure Mode Green mode, Program, Sensitivity Priority, Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority, Shutter & Aperture Priority, Manual, Bulb, Flash X-sync Speed, USER1, USER2, USER3
EV Compensation ±5EV (1/2EV steps or 1/3EV steps can be selected)
AE Lock Button type (timer type: two times the meter operating time set in Custom Setting);
Continuous as long as the shutter button is halfway pressed


Type Electronically controlled vertical-run focal plane shutter
* Electronic shutter when using Pixel Shift Resolution
Shutter Speed Auto: 1/8000 to 30 sec., Manual: 1/8000 to 30 sec. (1/3EV steps or 1/2EV steps), Bulb

Drive Modes

Mode Selection Still Image:
Single frame, Continuous (H, M, L), Self-timer (12s, 2s), Remote Control (immediately, 3 sec., continuous), Exposure Bracketing (2, 3 or 5 frames/ Possible to use with Self-timer or Remote Control ), Mirror-up (Possible to use with Remote Control), Interval shooting, Interval CompositeMovie:
Remote Control, Interval Movie Record
Continuous Shooting TBD: Max. approx. 8.3 fps, JPEG ( L: ★★★ at Continuous H): up to approx. 60 frames, RAW: up to approx. 23 frames
TBD: Max. approx. 4.5 fps, JPEG L: ★★★ at Continuous M): up to approx. 100 frames, RAW: up to approx. 32 frames
TBD: Max. approx. 3.0 fps, JPEG ( L: ★★★ at Continuous Lo): up to approx. 200 frames, RAW: up to approx. 52 frames
Multi-Exposure Composite Mode(Additive/Average/Bright)
Number of Shots(2 to 2000 images)
Interval Shooting Still Image:
Interval:2s. to 24h.
Number of shots:2~2000
imagesStart Interval: Now/Set TimeMovie
Recorded size:4K/FullHD/HD
Interval:2s. to 1h.
Recording 99h.
Start Interval: Now/Set Time


Flash Modes Auto Flash Discharge, Auto Flash + Red-eye Reduction, Flash On, Flash On + Red-eye Reduction, Slow-speed Sync, Slow-speed Sync + Red-eye, P-TTL, Trailing Curtain Sync, Contrast-control-sync, High-speed sync, Wireless sync (available with dedicated external flash)
Sync Speed 1/180sec.
Flash Exposure Compensation -2.0~+1.0EV

Capture Settings

Custom Image Bright, Natural, Portrait, Landscape, Vibrant, Radiant, Muted, Bleach Bypass, Reversal Film, Monochrome, Cross Processing
Cross Process Random, Preset 1-3, Favorite 1-3
Digital Filter Extract Color, Toy Camera, Retro, High Contrast, Shading, Invert Color, Unicolor Bold, Bold Monochrome
HDR Auto, HDR1, HDR2, HDR3, Exposure Bracket Value adjustable, Automatic composition correction function
Pixel Shift Resolution ON/OFF
Lens Correction Distortion Correction, Peripheral Illumin. Correction, Lateral Chromatic Aberration Correction, Diffraction Correction
D-RANGE Compensation Highlight Correction, Shadow Correction
Noise Reduction Slow Shutter Speed NR, High-ISO NR
GPS GPS Logging (Logging Interval, Logging Duration, Memory Card Options), ASTROTRACER, Calibration, Additional Settings (GPS Time Sync, GPS Indicator Lamp)
Horizon Correction SR On: correction up to 1 degrees, SR Off: correction up to 2 degrees
Composition Adjustment Adjustment range of ±1.5mm up, down, left or light (1mm when rotated); Rotating range of 1 degree
Electronic Level Displayed in viewfinder and LCD panel (Horizontal direction only);Displayed on LCD monitor (Horizontal direction and vertical direction)


File Format MPEG-4 AVC/H.264(MOV)
*Motion JPEG(AVI) for Interval Movie Record
Recorded Pixels Full HD(1920×1080, 60i/50i/30p/25p/24p)
HD (1280×720, 60p/50p/30p/25p/24p)
Sound Built-in monaural microphone, external microphone (Stereo recording compatible)
Recording Sound Level adjustable.
Recording Time Up to 25 minutes; automatically stops recording if the internal temperature of the camera becomes high.
Custom Images Bright, Natural, Portrait, Landscape, Vibrant, Radiant, Muted, Bleach Bypass, Reversal Film, Monochrome, Cross Processing
Cross Processing Random, Preset 1-3, Favorite 1-3.
Digital Filter Extract Color, Toy Camera, Retro, High Contrast, Shading, Invert Color, Unicolor Bold, Bold Monochrome
*available only for Interval Movie
Auto, HDR1, HDR2, HDR3, Exposure Bracket Value adjustable


Playback View Single frame, multi-image display (6,12, 20, 35, 80 segmentation), display magnification (up to 16, 100% display and quick magnification available), rotating, histogram (Y histogram,RGB histogram), bright area warning, Auto Image Rotation, detailed inf,Copyright Information (Photographer, Copyright holder), Folder Display, Calendar Filmstrip Display, Slide Show, GPS information (latitude,longitude, altitude, Coordinated Universal Time , Orientation)
Delete Delete single image, delete all, select & delete, delete folder, delete instant review image
Digital Filter Base Parameter Adj, Extract Color, Toy Camera, Retro, High Contrast, Shading, Invert Color, Unicolor Bold, Bold Monochrome, Tone Expansion, Sketch, Water Color, Pastel, Pasteurization,Miniature, Soft, Starburst, Fish-eye, Slim
RAW Development RAW file select:
Select Single Image, Select Multiple Images, Select a folderRAW Development Parameter:
File Format (JPEG/TIFF), Aspect Ratio, JPEG Recorded Pixels, JPEG Quality, Color Space, Distortion Correction, Peripheral Illumin. Corr., Lateral Chromatic Aberration Correction, Diffraction Correction, Color Fringe Correction, White Balance, Custom Image, Digital filter, HDR, Pixel Shift Resolution, Sensitivity, High-ISO NR, Shadow Correction
Edit Image Rotation, Color Moiré Correction, Resize, Cropping (Aspect ratio and Slant adjustment available), Index,Movie Edit (Divide or delete selected frames), Capturing a JPEG still picture from a movie, Saving RAW data in buffer memory, Image Copy, Eye-Fi Image Transfer


USER Mode Up to 3 settings can be saved
Custom Functions 26 items
Mode Memory 12 items
Button Customization RAW/ran Button (One Push File Format, Exposure Bracketing, Optical Preview, Digital Preview, Shake Reduction, LCD Panel Illumination, AF button (AF1, AF2, Cancel AF)
Text Size Standard, Large
World Time World Time settings for 75 cities (28 time zones)
AF fine Adjustment ±10 step, Uniform adjustment, Individual adjustment (up to 20 can be saved)
Copyright Information Names of “Photographer” and “Copyright Holder” are embedded to the image file.
Revision history can be checked using the provided software.

GPS/Electronic Compass

Reception Frequency L1 1575.42MHz
Recorded Information Latitude, Longitude, Altitude, Time (UTC), Direction
Geodesics World Geodetic System (WGS84)
GPS Logging KML format, Logging Interval: 5/10/15/30sec. /1min., Logging Duration: 1-24hr. (Up to 9hours at Logging Interval 5sec. Up to 18hrs. at Logging Interval 10sec.)
Electronic Compass Azimuth calculation using triaxial geomagnetic sensor and triaxial acceleration sensor, True north standard

Power supply

Battery Type Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery D-LI90
AC Adapter AC Adapter Kit K-AC132 (Optional)
Battery Life Number of recordable images: Approx.: 720 images
Playback time: Approx. 370 minutes
* With a fully-recharged Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery. Tested in compliance with CIPA standard.Actual results may vary depending on the shooting condition.


Connection Port USB3.0 (micro B), External power supply terminal, External cable switch terminal, X-sync socket, HDMI output terminal (Type D) , Stereo microphone input terminal, Headphone terminal
USB Connection MSC/PTP

Dimensions and Weight

Dimensions Approx. 131.5mm (W) x102.5mm (H) x 77.5mm (D) (excluding protrusions)
Weight Approx. 785g (Including dedicated battery and 1x SD Memory Card),
Approx. 700g (body only)


Included Strap O-ST132, ME Viewfinder Cap, Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery D-LI90, Battery Charger D-BC90, AC plug cord, Software (CD-ROM) S-SW160
<Mounted to the camera>
Eyecup Fs, Hot shoe cover FK, Body mount cover, Battery Grip terminal cover, Sync socket 2p cap
Software Digital Camera Utility 5

Support for optional accessories

FLU Card FLUCARD FOR PENTAX 16GB O-FC1: Remote Release, Image Browsing

Storage capacity


6016×4000 6016×4000 L: 24M
M: 14M
S: 6M
XS: 2M
Quality Level PEF DNG ★★★ ★★ ★★★ ★★ ★★★ ★★ ★★★ ★★
4GB 74 74 219 496 973 371 832 1609 821 1801 3352 2011 4161 7099
8GB 151 151 446 1010 1980 755 1693 3274 1670 3665 6822 4093 8469 14448
16GB 304 303 898 2033 3985 1520 3408 6589 3361 7376 13727 8236 17041 29070
32GB 611 609 1802 4079 7994 3050 6836 13217 6743 14796 27537 16522 34184 58314


Full HD
60i 50i 30p 25p 24p 60p 50p 30p 25p 24p
4GB 00:16′13″ 00:19′23″ 00:16′13″ 00:19′23″ 00:20′10″ 00:16′13″ 00:19′23″ 00:27′55″ 00:33′14″ 00:34′33″
8GB 00:33′01″ 00:39′26″ 00:33′01″ 00:39′26″ 00:41′01″ 00:33′01″ 00:39′26″ 00:56′49″ 01:07′38″ 01:10′19″
16GB 01:06′26″ 01:19′21″ 01:06′26″ 01:19′21″ 01:22′33″ 01:06′26″ 01:19′21″ 01:54′19″ 02:16′05″ 02:21′28″
32GB 02:13′16″ 02:39′10″ 02:13′16″ 02:39′10″ 02:45′36″ 02:13′16″ 02:39′10″ 03:49′19″ 04:32′59″ 04:43′49″

The maximum file size is 4GB for movie.
The maximum length is 25 minutes for movie.

System Requirements


OS Windows 8.1 (32 bit/64 bit) / Windows 8 (32 bit/64 bit) / Windows 7 (32 bit/64 bit) / Windows Vista (32 bit/64 bit)
CPU Intel Core 2 Duo or higher
RAM 2GB or more
Free Disk Space Program installation and start-up: 100 MB or more of available space
Image file saving: Approximately 10 MB per file (JPEG) / approximately 30MB (RAW)
Monitor 1280 x 1024 dots, 24 bit full-color or more


OS OS X 10.10/10.9/10.8/10.7
CPU Intel Core 2 Duo or later
RAM 2GB or more
Free Disk Space Program installation and start-up: 100 MB or more of available space
Image file saving: Approximately 10 MB per file (JPEG) or approximately 30MB (RAW)
Monitor 1280 x 1024 pixels, 24 bit full-color or more

Note: Designs and specifications are subject to change without notice.


On order delivery soon.

Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa, Canada

Ottawa After Dark December 2016

Friday December 9th, 2016 I grabbed my ancient 6 lb, (pre-1973) Marchioni Brothers Tiltall tripod, design was later sold to Leitz. This is a much sturdier tripod than my Manfrotto 190QCB/222 joystick head. I wanted to try a few stitched panoramic photos and the 3 way pan head on the Tiltall was a better choice. I only carried my Pentax ✩istD SMC-FA 50mm f:1.4 prime lens, and a Canon RS60-E3 electronic release. Spare batteries and CF card. First while waiting for Parliament Hill to light up, I did a Laurier Avenue West view of Ottawa City Hall.

laurier-pano3 frame panorama, Ottawa City Hall.

elginpanorama2Elgin Street 4 frame panorama.

xmaspanorama1Parliament Hill 3 frame panorama.

imgp1746“Rush Hour” vertical time exposure pan.

imgp1765 Christmas Lights, Parliament Hill, Ottawa.
imgp1778Christmas Lights, in camera double-exposure, Parliament Hill, Ottawa.

imgp1771Christmas Lights, vertical pan time-exposure, Parliament Hill, Ottawa.

Hopefully I’ll have my new dSLR camera body before they shut off the lights in January 2017.


Happy Holidays to all….

Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa, Canada

Enhancing photographers with NIK software

Google recently released their NIK software suite into the public domain. I decided to play with some of the tools on my recent Mud Lake nature photos. I normally just use DFine2 to clean up sensor noise. I decided to open up the shadows and enhance shadow detail that was normally lost.


imgp1163NIK Dfine2 to clean noise, then NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 to open up the shadows.


imgp1163-bSlightly different cropping . . .

Then I opened this image:

Before: I do like the image, but let’s see what we can do.


After #1: Brightened up, this is how I imagined the scene.


The NIK HDR Efex Pro 2 can bring up lost feather details. So I tried merging the two images each in a Photoshop CS6 layer and adjusted the opacity.


The opacity was adjusted visually for the look I wanted.


Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa, Ontario

A couple afternoons at Ottawa’s Mud Lake

Background on Mud Lake (Britannia Conservation Area)

A 79 hectare patch of wilderness in the middle of an urban setting, Britannia Conservation Area is an amazing area of forest and wetlands. It is home to a pond called Mud Lake and hundreds of species of wildlife, with raccoons, frogs, turtles and foxes. This is prime birding territory, with thousands of birdwatchers coming each year to observe hundreds of different species. A walk through this easy-to-access natural area provides an exciting escape from city life.


Today Friday October 14th, was a wonderful above seasonal temperatures. Taking advantage of possibly the last opportunity before winter arrives. My goal was hopefully to photograph Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias Linnaeus), but the Great Egret (Ardea alba egretta) was very high on my wish list. Along the trail I was buzzed by many Black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus), White-breasted nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) looking for handouts.

Along the trail I was met by this Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo), I had to put my 50mm f:1.4 lens on, as it was far too close to use my 300mm prime.


Expecting handouts were these animated characters…


American red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus)  Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.


Eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis). Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.


Along the trail I saw a Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias Linnaeus) land midway across the lake, and a Great egret (Ardea alba egretta) across the lake.


Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias Linnaeus) with 600mm equivalent, Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens, with Pentax T6-2X Rear Converter. Effective focal length 900mm f:8…

imgp1077Great egret (Ardea alba egretta), Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens with Pentax T6-2X Rear Converter (Effective focal length 900mm f:8) /

I was disappointed, and thought this as good as it was going to get. But the Egret had other ideas. He/she flew over towards the start of the trail, where my 300mm was almost too much lens.  I should have packed my ATX-Tokina 60~120mm f:2.8 zoom, as it would have been perfect where it landed.

Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.

Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.


Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.


Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.


My personal favourite of the day, heck might be my favourite of the fall. Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.

Now my action sequence…


.. success


He was very good at fishing, this was the biggest fish I saw him catch, pretty sure it’s Brown bullhead (Ameiurus nebulosus) aka mud pout.  Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.


Great egret (Ardea alba egretta), Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens

As I headed down Cassells Road, I liked the light that was falling on the local ducks.

imgp1181Mallard Duck drake (Anas platyrhynchos) Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime

imgp1183 Mallard Duck hen (Anas platyrhynchos) Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime


imgp1020Wood Duck hen (Aix sponsa) Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.

With another female Wood Duck showing her colours.


Wood Duck hen (Aix sponsa) Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.

imgp1200Wood Duck drake (Aix sponsa) Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.

Wednesday October 19th the mercury climbed to a high of 24.2°C so I headed back to Mud Lake. I approached from the south trail near the footbridge. I encountered several American Black Ducks (Anas rubripes) near the newly rebuilt footbridge. The water lever is very low, and there were now turtles basking in the sun. But to the west of the bridge there was a Great Egret (Ardea alba egretta) on a raft of vegetation. This  required mounting my 2X teleconverter on to my 300mm f:4 prime telephoto lens.


Great egret (Ardea alba egretta) in Mud Lake, Ottawa. Wednesday October 19, 2016. Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens, with Pentax T6-2X Rear Converter (600mm f:8).

On the distant shore there were a couple mature Great egrets, and a couple Great Blue herons well outside the reach of my lens. I heading down the trial to Cassells Road and the ridge to see what songbirds might have been around, I saw a couple White-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys), the regular Black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) flitting about, a few White-breasted nuthatchs (Sitta carolinensis). Both male and female Northern cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis). I failed to see any transients I heard reported at Mud Lake.

I headed back towards the small bay where I photographed the immature Great egret on Friday. I and several others were treated with an hour visit from the immature Great egret (Ardea alba egretta).


Great egret (Ardea alba egretta) in Mud Lake, Ottawa. Wednesday October 19, 2016. Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens


Great egret (Ardea alba egretta) eating a red dragonfly in Mud Lake, Ottawa. Wednesday October 19, 2016. Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens


Great egret (Ardea alba egretta) in Mud Lake, Ottawa. Wednesday October 19, 2016. Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens


Great egret (Ardea alba egretta) in Mud Lake, Ottawa. Wednesday October 19, 2016. Pentax ✩istD ATX-Tokina 60~120mm f:2.8 zoom lens.

Fall foliage reflections with warm afternoon golden light can create a striking image.


Wood Duck immature male (Aix sponsa) . Pentax ✩istD ATX-Tokina 60~120mm f:2.8 zoom lens.


Mallard Duck drake (Anas platyrhynchos) strutting his stuff.  Pentax ✩istD AT-X Tokina 60~120mm f:2.8 zoom


Mallard Duck hen (Anas platyrhynchos) strutting her stuff.  Pentax ✩istD AT-X Tokina 60~120mm f:2.8 zoom


Black-capped chickadee (Poecile atricapillus) .  Pentax ✩istD AT-X Tokina 60~120mm f:2.8 zoom

All in all it was a lovely summer like day in Ottawa. Depending on how the weather holds, I might get back before freeze-up.


Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa, Canada

Ottawa Autumn at Patterson Creek

The leaves are turning and we have frost in the air. Thursday was a wonderful above seasonal fall day, so I took a walk over to Patterson Creek in downtown Ottawa. It will be drained starting Tuesday for the winter.


O’Connor Street Bridge Ottawa, October 7th, 2016. Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.

In the center of the park is, The O’Connor Street Bridge, a single concrete arch bridge spanning Patterson Creek in the Glebe community, was designed by Canadian architect Francis Conroy Sullivan in 1907. Sullivan was the only Canadian pupil of well known architect Frank Lloyd Wright.  The O’Connor Street Bridge has been designated as an Ontario Heritage Property.


Fall colours reflecting in the water makes for interesting abstracts. Pentax ✩istD SMC-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens.

But it is Autumn, so fall colours are of interest. All are taken with my Pentax ✩istD SMC-M✩ 300mm f:4 prime lens. I tend to use backlight in my fall leaf shooting.




This fall we haven’t had the explosion of colour as we had in past autumns, but some colours are intense


Darrell Larose
Ottawa, Canada

Going Buggy into Autumn

Today was the first day of Autumn, the thermometer was still hitting 27 degrees. Headed back to the Sunflower patch. Spotted another species of wasp, but it wouldn’t stay still long enough to photograph. Eventually colder mornings will slow many of these insects down. Once again I carried my aged Pentax ✩istD SMC-M 50mm f:4 Macro lens on Pentax T6-2X teleconverter, flash fill. This combination required me to be 2″ from the front of the lens to the subject.



Paper wasp (Polistes dominula) on sunflower, Thursday September 22nd, 2016 (both).



Common green bottle fly (Lucilia sericata) on sunflower, Thursday September 22nd, 2016


These are very difficult as my macro lens only does 1:2 or half life size on the image plane. It’s also a f:4, so with the T6-2X Rear Converter mounted the effective maximum aperture is f:8. Lens was closed down to f:8-11 so works out to effectively f: 16-22, hand-held. Tripods are pretty much useless with small moving targets.

Went back today, Friday September 23, 2016. It was a more seasonal day weather wise. Lots of Bumblebees, honeybees, wasps, flies, ants and a few moths. I wasn’t able to get close enough to the small moths.


Common green bottle fly (Lucilia sericata) on sunflower, Thursday September 22nd, 2016




Half black bumblebee (Bombus vagans) on sunflower, Friday September 23nd, 2016.


Black Ant, on sunflower, Thursday September 22nd, 2016

Went back on Sunday, a sunny but more seasonal 11 degree day.


Paper wasp (Polistes dominula) on sunflower, Sunday September 25th, 2016

imgp0864 Common green bottle fly (Lucilia sericata) on sunflower, Thursday September 22nd, 2016

imgp0883Common housefly (Musca domestic) on sunflower, Sunday September 25th, 2016

imgp0884Green Metallic Bee (Gapostemon virescens) on sunflower, Sunday September 25th, 2016


Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa, Canada

Going buggy!

It was another nice above seasonal, 25 degree late summer day in the Nation’s Capital. I popped my old manual focus SMC-Pentax-M 50mm f:4 macro lens onto my Pentax T6-2X to my aged Pentax ✩istD body.  All these photos required me to be 50mm from the lens front to the subject. Several skillsets are required, one is not to scare the insects away. And in the case of bees, wasps or hornets not to induce a defense reaction.

imgp0549Common green bottle fly (Lucilia sericata) on sunflower stem

imgp0550 Common green bottle fly (Lucilia sericata) on verigated sunflower

imgp0557Common green bottle fly (Lucilia sericata) on verigated sunflower

imgp0563 Sharing, Honeybee & Bumblebee on sunflower
imgp0573Eastern Yellow Jacket (Vespula maculifrons) on sunflower leaf.

I went back today, another wonderful sunny day. The last day of summer, we were at 27 degrees today. I spotted my first Green Metallic Bee (gapostemon virescens). This small plot has 4 species of wasps, at least two types of Bumblebee, and as many other bees.

imgp0593Common green bottle fly (Lucilia sericata) on sunflower, Tuesday September 20th, 2016

imgp0602Green Metallic Bee (gapostemon virescens) on sunflower, Tuesday September 20th, 2016

imgp0603Green Metallic Bee (gapostemon virescens) on sunflower, Tuesday September 20th, 2016


Small Milkweed Bugs (Lygaeus kalmii) on sunflower, Tuesday September 20th.



Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa, Canada

AUGUST 20, 2016, Les grands feux Casino du Lac‑Leamy fireworks: Grand Finale

Saturday was the Grand Finale for Les grands feux Casino du Lac‑Leamy. I had a photo pass for the site, at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau.
Panorama1Pentax ✩istD SMC Pentax-FA 50mm f:1.4 prime lens. 1/60th second f:11. Canadian Museum of Civilization, 4 frame panoramic stitch.
My chosen vantage point was about 400 metres from the launch raft in the Ottawa River. This put the Ottawa skyline as the background as seen in this 4 frame panorama. As I was very close, I mounted my SMC Pentax-DA 14mm f:2.8 prime lens on to my Pentax ✩istD. In my gadget bag were my SMC Pentax-FA 50mm f:1.4, and SMC Pentax-M 35mm f:2.8 prime lenses and a sturdy Manfrotto 190QCB with #222 Joystick head.
The 50 year old Canadian firm Royal Pyrotechnie presented the Grand Finale show. This is a small selection of my favourites.
IMGP0403You can see the glow of smartphone and iPad screens in the crowd.
Team Australia won both the Zeus Trophy, and the juried Best Show Award.
Darrell A. Larose
Ottawa,  Canada