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09-04-2010, 01:57 AM   #1
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Which portrait lens?

Hi you all-knowing Pentaxians, you got to help me with this

My wife and (she`s soon a proud owner of a red K-x and I own a K10d) want to buy a portrait lens and we`re looking for advise for which one to buy...

Now I have a 50mm f/1.7 SMC-A, but finding the focus unless I stop down quite a few steps is quite hard unless I`ve got plenty of time (and that`s not something our 1 year old daughter takes into account).

So after having tried my brothers 50mm autofocus lens for Canon, well I got jealous

Maybe I should consider a wider lens (like 43mm pancake?) when I now have the chance to buy new gear?


Sorry if my english is a bit incomprehensible

Best regards

Tommy.

09-04-2010, 04:06 AM   #2
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buy a DA40, very quick focus, good image quality, enough length for close portraits without distortion and short enough for group shots if you have the space to back-up
09-04-2010, 06:16 AM   #3
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For portraits + AF (ideally quick) + good rendering...

Hm, first thing to come to mind is F50/1.7. One of the fastest focusing Pentax lenses I've used with terrific IQ, IMO. Second pick would be DA*55. Had it for few days and it's great lens, but ain't sure how it would cope with moving kids (AF-wise).
3rd pick, above mentioned DA40. Probably fastest AFing SMC lens that there is and great, great IQ. Consideration: would combo of 40mm and f2.8 be enough for what you need/want. 43 is terrific lens but AF is slower than 40/50. 77 is another potent candidate. And have you thought of zooms? Something like 24(28)-70(75)/2.8?
Good luck choosing
09-04-2010, 06:19 AM   #4
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a Zoom lens would probably server your purposes better than a prime, Zoom lenses are good for capturing events quickly as they unfold. Primes require a bit of planning ahead to make things work. I'm not a huge fan of zooms, but I accept the fact that sometimes the difference between a Prime and a Zoom is getting the shot and not.

09-04-2010, 06:25 AM   #5
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DA 70mm if you want prime or DA 50-135mm lens if you dont mind a large lens
09-04-2010, 07:09 AM   #6
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Thanks a lot for good input.

A zoom lens isn`t really an option as I find the image quality of a prime to be way better in general. Unless I want to spend a fortune on the lens...

Axl, the 50 f/1.7 with autofocus you`re talking of, where to find it?

I can`t seem to find something like 24(28)-70(75) f/2.8 anywhere.
That could possibly be nearest to what I want, IF I`d only find it

What do you guys think of a FA 35mm f/2.0?
Reasonable price here in Norway.

The DA 40 f/2.8 is also on my wish-list...

Would look great on both the k-x and K10d
09-04-2010, 09:26 AM   #7
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The FA35mm is never reasonably priced.

I agree with the advice for a zoom lens. It sounds like your wife and you will be better served with a zoom. The Pentax 16-45mm f4 lens is reasonably priced. Cheaper than the 35mm and 40mm. The image quality is excellent as well. Other options include the Sigma and Tamron all purpose zoom options (roughly 16-50mm or 28-70mm), under $400.

Axl's suggestion for the F50 1.7 is great as well but they're rather pricey at $200 used. They are no longer under production so you will have to get them used.
09-04-2010, 09:40 AM   #8
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If you are just looking to buy a lens, that's fine and any of the choices suggested would serve you well. If you're just frustrated by not being able to get the shot, you might try using Catch In Focus (Focus Trap) with your A50. It works quite well on most subjects.



09-04-2010, 10:53 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Larsenio Quote
A zoom lens isn`t really an option as I find the image quality of a prime to be way better in general. Unless I want to spend a fortune on the lens...
Not necessarily. See below.

QuoteQuote:
I can`t seem to find something like 24(28)-70(75) f/2.8 anywhere.
The usual choice in this range is the Tamron 28-75/2.8. Shouldn't be that hard to find. Both B&H and Adorama normally stock it. It does appear to be on the expensive side right now (close to $500), but it's not uncommon to find it used or even new for more like $350.
09-04-2010, 01:53 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Larsenio Quote
What do you guys think of a FA 35mm f/2.0?
Reasonable price here in Norway.
What is a god price for it and where to order? It's crazy expencive here if you can find it.
09-04-2010, 03:49 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Larsenio Quote
...

Axl, the 50 f/1.7 with autofocus you`re talking of, where to find it?

.....
keep an eye on ebay and here on the forum's marketplace.
The FA50/1.7 is relatively rare but the F50/1.7 pops out now and then. These days day go between $200-250. If you ask me, well worth the money... I still regret selling mine!
09-04-2010, 05:06 PM   #12
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Larsenio,

If you can find a FA35/2.0 at a reasonable price (to you) then go for it. It is quite sharp wide-open and very sharp by f2.8. Even if you don't like it, you can probably sell it without losing much money =)

DA40 is another good option. AF is very fast and sharp wide-open too.

Cheers
Kenny
09-05-2010, 12:01 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Larsenio Quote

What do you guys think of a FA 35mm f/2.0?
Reasonable price here in Norway.

if you think and saw one for a reasonable price there in Norway, then I can vouch for it. the appealing thing about it is it's wider fov coupled by fast aperture and very sharp rendering. given the right circumstances and application, it can be a very good portrait lens.
09-05-2010, 04:06 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
What is a god price for it and where to order? It's crazy expencive here if you can find it.
Fovi AS - smc PENTAX FA 35mm

That`s 1138,58$... Ok, not so cheap. But I thought maybe well worth the money...

Last edited by Larsenio; 09-05-2010 at 04:13 PM. Reason: Extra input
09-05-2010, 05:25 PM   #15
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Here's some for you to look into...

Zoom:
Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8
Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4 (well regarded and the only one I haven't personally owned/tried on this list)
Pentax DA 50-135mm f/2.8 (amazing lens)

Prime:
Sigma 30mm f/1.4
Pentax FA 35mm f/2 (expensive now)
Pentax DA 40mm f/2.8
Pentax FA 43mm f/1.9
Pentax FA 50mm f/1.4

c[_]
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