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06-03-2010, 08:27 AM   #31
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Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Vancouver (USA)
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I own the FA 35/2 and bought it in preference to the DA 35/2.8 primarily because I shoot both film and digital. There was also the matter of price. I got the FA 35/2 for $290 from Adorama back when it was still widely available and street price was low. My advice would be to consider the type of shooting you do, price, and the need to support the 35mm format. Both are great lenses.

As for my impressions...I like primes and the 35/2 is on the camera most of the time. It is sharp, has good contrast, colors, etc. As for is mostly plastic, but very solid and smooth with a very usable manual focus. Is there anything it doesn't do very well? I would have to say that I have better lenses in my bag for portraits and subjects where good bokeh is a plus. The bokeh on the FA 35/2 is not bad, but it is not particularly good at some apertures.

Here is a link to photos from my Flickr photostream that were taken with the FA 35/2. Included are a number of landscapes, some done on film, and even a few that made it into PPG:
Flickr: FA 35/2 on fotostevia's photostream

White Bark Pine, Crater Lake, Oregon

K10D, Pentax-FA 35/2

Flaming Branches

K10D, Pentax-FA 35/2


Last edited by stevebrot; 06-03-2010 at 08:42 AM.
06-03-2010, 10:22 AM   #32
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If you plan on doing low light, get the FA. The difference between 2.0 and 2.8 can be pretty vast. Also get the FA if you want to use it on film bodies. Last, if action photography is important to you and you want to autofocus quickly, get the FA.

If you aren't planning on shooting in low light, and don't need fast focusing, get the DA. If you want to shoot really close up macro, get the DA.

One thing I will say - owning the FA, it actually focuses closer than you might expect, and since it is so absurdly sharp, you can crop quite aggressively to sort of 'emulate' macro. The FA consistently performs better than I expect it to considering the old design and plastic/rubber construction. It is my fallback even though I have 'sexier' lenses at my disposal.

Last edited by Eigengrau; 06-03-2010 at 10:23 AM. Reason: typo

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