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09-01-2007, 07:12 PM   #1
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Advice for choosing my first prime, DA 40mm or FA 35mm?

I guess it's not my first prime, technically. I've got an old M 50mm, f/2 that was the kit lens for my K1000. But I don't like to use it much with the K100D, because the combination of manual focus and manual aperture support gets tiresome after a while. I know, it's not sophisticated or honorable to eschew manual lenses...but so be it.

After using my 18-55mm kit lens stuck on a few different focal lengths, I've decided that a 35 or 40 mm makes a good walk-around, normal lens. I guess that should come as no surprise. I notice that there are two lenses that are in my sweet spot from a feature and price standpoint.

The DA 40mm is small and light, less expensive, and supports quick-shift focus. It looks a little funny mounted on the camera, but kind of cool at the same time. The reviews here on PF are top-notch, as well.

The FA 35mm f/2 is a stop faster and has just a little wider view. Word is, it's a pretty good piece of glass in its own right. And if there were nothing else different between the two lenses, I might prefer the perspective of 35mm for general shooting.

So is there any input you all can give that might steer me one way or the other? Are there major differences in AF speed or image quality to worry about? Or is it simply worth it to pay for the faster lens?

09-01-2007, 10:39 PM   #2
and
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Am not sure about the difference, but the 35 shouldnt be that much more than the 40, they practically cost the same last time I checked.

40 imo is too small, not comfortable to use, maybe its better on a k100d than on a k10d with grip.

I have the 35 and I think its great. very usable at f2. sharp. And its fast. f2.8 u can get in a zoom. For f2 you need the prime, so even if u get an f2.8 zoom later, u might still reach for the 35 to get that extra speed. Its a great lens I think u are already steering in towards the 35 so I say: go for it.
09-02-2007, 01:17 AM   #3
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This is just my opinion.

Using prime lenses provides a means to shoot a variety of photographs under various kinds of circumstances. Being able to take shots while being dark; being able to travel far with a lighter gear; being able to focus relatively faster; being able to trust the lens ability to perform consistently; being able to know the strength and weakness of the prime in order to use it effectively to your own advantage...

So For me, if cost is not an issue, I would go for Fa 31 ltd. Otherwise Fa 35 f2 is probably a preferred option. Faster to use, maybe not as light as Da 40mm, wider view for general purpose shots etc.

Nowadays prime lenses are losing its advantage against zooms, little difference in image quality when aperture goes above f2.8

The question I would ask myself would be what I buy this prime for.

However, Fa 31 ltd does have a charm rendering to its own images at special occasions. It is not something measureable. Sometimes it makes the protraits tick. The wow factor is what I am talking about using this lens. A common conclusion from chats with fellow pentax users on msn ... hehe

Good luck choosing one

Cheers
09-02-2007, 07:42 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by roentarre Quote
This is just my opinion.

Using prime lenses provides a means to shoot a variety of photographs under various kinds of circumstances. Being able to take shots while being dark; being able to travel far with a lighter gear; being able to focus relatively faster; being able to trust the lens ability to perform consistently; being able to know the strength and weakness of the prime in order to use it effectively to your own advantage...

So For me, if cost is not an issue, I would go for Fa 31 ltd. Otherwise Fa 35 f2 is probably a preferred option. Faster to use, maybe not as light as Da 40mm, wider view for general purpose shots etc.

Nowadays prime lenses are losing its advantage against zooms, little difference in image quality when aperture goes above f2.8

The question I would ask myself would be what I buy this prime for.

However, Fa 31 ltd does have a charm rendering to its own images at special occasions. It is not something measureable. Sometimes it makes the protraits tick. The wow factor is what I am talking about using this lens. A common conclusion from chats with fellow pentax users on msn ... hehe

Good luck choosing one

Cheers
Agreed. I've never seen a prime I didn't want, but he main reason I haven't put them on my Sig line like you have is that most of them are buried treasure around the house because I haven't used them for so long I don't remember where they are. The lenses that get used are wide to normal zooms.

09-02-2007, 08:21 AM   #5
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Dave.

I would go for the 35mm for the same reasons as posted above; sharpness, contrast, speed and so on. But I would like to add the convenience of using it with a 35mm frame. If you still have the K1000...

Here´s mine with 6 hours left:
SMC Pentax-FA 35mm f2 AL camera lens - (eBay item 140151915685 end time Sep-02-07 14:46:06 PDT)
Sorry for the promotion, but if you have made up your mind, it might be interesting to you.

I´m selling mine only due to the fact that I came across the 31mm LTD which makes holes in your wallet....

// Mats

Last edited by matsoberg; 09-02-2007 at 08:34 AM.
09-02-2007, 08:36 AM   #6
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Fa 35

I have the DA40 and it's a nice enough lens, but I rarely use it. Even though it's small and turns my DS into an almost pocketable camera, it's a bit too wide for indoor shots. It's a bit too slow for portraits and low light work. If you have large hands, it's hard to focus manually.

It is sharp as a tack, though. The image quality is very nice. It has it's place in the pantheon, I just don't think I'd make it my first AF prime.
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