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09-08-2010, 04:46 AM   #1
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How does the Pentax 50mm F/1.7 compare to EF 50mm F/1.8 MKII?

I am thinking of getting a very used 300D specially for use with the absurdly cheap yet fast 50mm f/1.8 to backup my K20D when f/2.8 doesnt cut it.

or possibly a D70s with the Nikon equivalent.

Where i am, the price is reasonably within range of each other.

09-08-2010, 05:42 AM   #2
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I've used both lenses, actually, and the EF is actually pretty sharp, but has a relatively cheap build quality, no distance scale, and I don't think it's bokeh is as nice as the F's. We're talking about two completely different systems, though, so I don't think such a comparison means much.

If you're going to get a new body just to mount a 50mm, I'd recommend going down the Pentax route instead- it's much easier to switch lenses than to carry two cameras at all times.

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09-08-2010, 05:44 AM   #3
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I don't know about CaNikon lenses but F50/1.7 (or it's rare FA cousin for that matter) are probably the best 50s from Pentax, after A/K50/1.2. Beautifully sharp, very nice albeit bit cold colours, fast (and I mean FAST) AF, pleasant OOF rendering. These two are definitely worth every penny of their respective prices! I'm still kicking myself for selling my F50/1.7.... If you can get one, get it... forget Rebels and so on...
09-08-2010, 05:54 AM   #4
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Buying a body AND a lens makes much less sense than buying a lens...

Lenses from Canon and Pentax have different renderings, but both are good. The f1,7 50s from Pentax are generally seen as the sharpest 50s around (except for macro) while the f1.8 from Canon is a "cheap" 50.

If you want a feeling of how good each lens is, you can look at dpreview's tests of the 50s. They tested the FA50 f1,4 from Pentax, and it came out as better than the Canon. the f1,7 are sharper...

I'd say if you're happy with your Pentax camera, get a used F or FA 50 f1,7 and you'll be fine.

09-08-2010, 06:09 AM   #5
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actually you are on the mark. I am looking for a fast 50mm that does not involve manual aperture and manual focusing yet is cheap. Meaning it is expendable.

Got a job coming up that pays well but kinda risky for my work lens so this was an idea. At the worst possible case, it would be a calculated loss and i still get some revenue in return.

is the sharpness of F1.7 and F1.8 II like night and day or the kind where on 4R~A4 size, very few people can spot the difference?
09-08-2010, 06:29 AM   #6
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Pretty sure the 50/1.8D from Nikon is generally considered to be sharper than either, and it's $90 or so used. JFYI.
09-08-2010, 07:11 AM   #7
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Did a comparison with some friends comparing my M 50mm F/1.7 vs. canon 50mm F/1.4 (new version or w/e) vs. the Nikon 50mm F/1.4 G all @ F/1.8/F/1.7.

We all three agreed that the Pentax M 50mm F/1.7 was either equal or slightly better than the Nikon and the canon was the softest of the bunch. Sadly I no longer have the images.... one of my friends might though

Infact one just got a canon 50mm F/1.8. I'll ask her how it is and maybe take a few snaps and report back
09-08-2010, 07:16 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Reportage Quote
actually you are on the mark. I am looking for a fast 50mm that does not involve manual aperture and manual focusing yet is cheap. Meaning it is expendable.

Got a job coming up that pays well but kinda risky for my work lens so this was an idea. At the worst possible case, it would be a calculated loss and i still get some revenue in return.

is the sharpness of F1.7 and F1.8 II like night and day or the kind where on 4R~A4 size, very few people can spot the difference?
I have the SMC A 1.7 which I believe is optically identical to the F 1.7 and I can tell you that edges are not THAT sharp wide open. To get great pictures, I have to stop down to at least 2.0, usually 2.8.

You will likely want to do that for your DOF anyways...

09-08-2010, 07:20 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Reportage Quote
I am thinking of getting a very used 300D specially for use with the absurdly cheap yet fast 50mm f/1.8 to backup my K20D when f/2.8 doesnt cut it.

or possibly a D70s with the Nikon equivalent.

Where i am, the price is reasonably within range of each other.
The Nikon D70s is a nice body with front & rear dials. It has decent ergonomics as well. I have one for the lab and that's what I have the grad students using along with the 18-70mm/3.5-4.5 zoom and 105mm Micro-Nikkor.
09-08-2010, 07:31 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Reportage Quote
I am thinking of getting a very used 300D specially for use with the absurdly cheap yet fast 50mm f/1.8 to backup my K20D when f/2.8 doesnt cut it.

or possibly a D70s with the Nikon equivalent.

Where i am, the price is reasonably within range of each other.
My first DSLR was a 300D and my first prime lens was a 50/1.8 MkII.

Both served me well, but unless you are specifically want an extra body, I would just buy a Pentax F50/1.7 (or FA). It will certainly cost you less than a 300D+50/1.8 and you'll have the benefit of using it on the much better body (K20D). In addition, althought the 50/1.8 is a nice lens (and well priced), the built quality isn't so hot and it isn't as nice as the F50/1.7 in terms of IQ, IMO.
09-08-2010, 05:32 PM   #11
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Check out this thread, looks like the EF 50 f1.8 has a problem with flare, not so great bokeh and will fall apart if you look at it the wrong way. You would be better served to find a F or FA 50 f1.7. I have the F 50 f1.7 and it is a fine lens.
09-08-2010, 06:32 PM   #12
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I've actually started with Canon while back...

EF 50mm f1.8 II was a neat little lens, very sharp even wide open. Never noticed the flair (always used it with the hood, maybe a reason for that), but bokeh was not the most pleasant one. Specially with higher contrast areas, and anything even remotely reflective...

Built quality of EF 50mm, well, plastic toy indeed. Even the mount was plastic. But for the price of at that time (even at the local camera store) $78 it was very useful, fun lens with fast AF and very light weight.

Regards,
D

EDIT: Don't have access to my old album right now, but found few wide open from EF 50mm f/1.8 II




This one is f4:


Last edited by Duh_Vinci; 09-08-2010 at 06:48 PM.
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