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06-04-2010, 12:37 PM   #1
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Lens advice

Hi. Pentax K100D user. Have several manual focus lenses, but my eyesight isnt what it used to be and get more out of focus shots than I am happy with. Looking at the following AF primes. Sigma 30mm 1.4 ($440), Pentax 50mm 1.4 or 1.7 ($300), and Pentax 40mm DA 2.8 ($370).

Can anyone share any comments on those lenses? Looks like they are all pretty highly rated.

Thanks
Mike

06-04-2010, 12:51 PM   #2
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I have the 50mm 1.4 and I LOVE it, but my only caution would be that wide open it has a VERY narrow DOF. As long as you are aware of that and take it into consideration when shooting, I don't think you can go wrong--depending on what you are shooting.
06-04-2010, 01:30 PM   #3
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I have the FA 50mm f1.4 and the DA 40 mm f2.8 and like them both, clmonk is right, the DOF gets very narrow at f1.4 but it is a great lens at f2.8.

That being said, I think that the 40mm focal length seems to be a better choice for all around, what I could call "casual shooting", plus I really like the compact size of the "pancake" 40mm. It doesn't seem like there would be that much difference between 50mm and 40mm but sometimes with the 50mm I can't get far enough back, especially inside.

Hope this helps....
06-04-2010, 01:32 PM   #4
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Sorry if I diverse a little, but I have been experiencing much the same problem with my eyesight.
I wear graduated glasses, which makes it even harder.
I purchased a set of specs, which have lens for near sight reading only (to my prescription), in an old set of frames I had to save cost and they have made a remarkable difference with focussing.
Yes, it is a bit of a pain swapping specs etc, but had little choice really. When it gets too much I go back to AF lens.
I leave the specs in my camera bag.

06-04-2010, 02:09 PM   #5
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That’s a tough one. If I could only have one I would go with the 50. I have the sigma 30 and love it however the bokeh on the sigma is just a bit lacking for me.


Sigma 30 1.4

Sigma 30 1.4

My wife has the FA 50 1.4 and it’s is a wonderful lens

Pentax FA 50 1.4

My wife uses the FA 50 a lot so I just bought the 43 1.9 limited, hopfully it arrives this week Had to sell the 70 2.4 Limited to fund it

Last edited by montman; 06-04-2010 at 02:42 PM.
06-04-2010, 02:31 PM   #6
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Good plug for the FA 50 montman. Very crisp shots there.
I can also vouch for the FA 50, although you wouldn't be at a loss going with the DA 40 ltd either. Despite it's f/2.8 maximum, its AF is fast and reasonably good in low light - although I wouldn't know how it compares with the FA 50.

I can say the FA 50 is excellent value and although not the best lens in the world it can produce stellar results, especially at apertures f/2 to f/8.
06-04-2010, 02:38 PM   #7
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Thanks Ash! There are so many choices for the Pentax you are always left wodnering what if I just had the Ö Good thing is you can just buy a lens and sell it back a year later for $100 less if you did not like it. Thatís less then ten dollars a month to rent the lens.
06-04-2010, 02:44 PM   #8
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Does your camera support Catch-In-Focus? As my eyeballs de-laminate, I depend on CIF more and more. It turns all those manual lenses into slow AF.

ALSO: Shouldn't this be in the LENS section?

06-04-2010, 02:45 PM   #9
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I had the 50 1.4 and its certainly a good lens for the money. I have the Sigma 30 1.4 and love it. I don't find the bokeh lacking, its just a little different look. Personally, I like having lenses with different bokeh characters. Check out Sigma's website for some great pictures taken with this lens. My fondness for this lens, in fact, is what will make me a first-day customer of the Sigma 85. The build quality is MUCH higher than the 50 1.4, and is on par with a DA* (though not weather-sealed).
06-04-2010, 02:51 PM   #10
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DogLover- Agree, I think different would be a better word for the bokeh on the Sigma rather then lacking. Also agree the build quality is very nice.
06-04-2010, 02:56 PM   #11
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catch in focus

hmmm, didnt know that was an option. need to read the manual! a quick search indicates that option is available on the k20d, the k10d, the k200d, and the k100d super. dont know yet if it works on my k100d.

i did just buy a refurbished k200d body for $300 on ebay, so if the k100D doesnt work i will try that on the k200d.

boy, those k20d bodies sure seem to hold their value, hard to find a used body under $500
06-04-2010, 02:59 PM   #12
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oops. newbie here. didnt realize there was a LENS section.
06-04-2010, 09:35 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by mnseawa Quote
hmmm, didnt know that was an option. need to read the manual! a quick search indicates that option is available on the k20d, the k10d, the k200d, and the k100d super. dont know yet if it works on my k100d.

i did just buy a refurbished k200d body for $300 on ebay, so if the k100D doesnt work i will try that on the k200d.

boy, those k20d bodies sure seem to hold their value, hard to find a used body under $500
Every Pentax autofocus camera, excluding only the ME-F, will catch-in-focus. In my SF-1 manual they called it snap-in-focus. Combined with a tripod and a locked cable release, I captured three hummingbirds at a feeder while I ate supper when I tested it. Cameras earlier than the K20d cannot do it with lenses that have the lens switch set to MF; they think the lens if AF. I do know it works on the K200d, as my daughter is using the A 70-210/4 with it.
06-05-2010, 07:10 AM   #14
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Maybe it's just me, but it seems like a discussion on lenses belongs in the "Lens Discussion" section. Moved.
06-05-2010, 07:32 AM   #15
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There is always the option of swapping the focus screen for one with a split-prism. The stock screen sucks for manual focus.
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