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09-13-2007, 11:22 AM   #1
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Anyone? A50/1.2 vs Zeiss ZK 50/1.4?

With Zeiss ZKs available for Pentax, should the Pentax-A 50mm f1.2 still command the same money? Both can be had for about the same cost these days.

The Zeiss takes the cake over the 1.4 at Photozone which begs the question: How much better is the A1.2 (or is it) over the A-FA1.4? Is it more of the same with an extra stop?

Discuss!


Kelly.

09-13-2007, 01:43 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by thePiRaTE!! Quote
The Zeiss takes the cake over the 1.4 at Photozone
Yeah, except the cake is made of razor blades.

IMO all the Zeiss ZF lenses are optimized for utter sharpness, hence scoring amazing results on Photozone and the like. That's fine for the 25mm or possibly the 35mm, even the 50 and 100 macros, but for the 50/1.4 and 85/1.4 I want better out of focus rendering than they provide. Even though Klaus doesn't seem to mind it, I find the bokeh of the 50 and 85 to be not very attractive for some of his test scenes.

Also IMO the 50/1.2 is the best Pentax fast 50, which is saying something. So from what I've seen of the Zeiss, I would say that overall the Pentax is better. The Zeiss is probably sharper, but so what?
09-13-2007, 06:08 PM   #3
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Cool, cool. Would you say there was a marked difference between the FA 50/1.4 and the A 50/1.2? I'm still new on these things... is 1.2 a full stop over 1.4?

While the 1.2 seems extreme, I guess I'm wondering if its equates to much effectively over 1.4. I've kicked tires on a few 1.2's but never really bit since I have the FA31... doesn't seem like a 50 would bring much to the table, tempting as it is.

Thanks.
09-13-2007, 07:05 PM   #4
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1.2 is half a stop faster than 1.4

09-13-2007, 09:35 PM   #5
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What makes the A 1.2 so good? In the 80's the Pentax film guys I knew then did not care for the A 1.2 for image but did appreciate it for the extra bit of speed. I have only had the A 1.4. The concensus seemed to be that the price difference between the two did not match the amount of gain. I seem to recall it was partly due to quality falling off around the edges, and I guess pairing it up with a smaller chip kinda helps in that area? Or were the Pentax locals just out to lunch? Seems I even remember reading the same thing in magazines. I asked the local Pentax historian and his opinion of the 1.2 was as stated. Are we completely out to lunch?

John
09-14-2007, 05:05 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by jnorth Quote
What makes the A 1.2 so good? In the 80's the Pentax film guys I knew then did not care for the A 1.2 for image but did appreciate it for the extra bit of speed. I have only had the A 1.4. The concensus seemed to be that the price difference between the two did not match the amount of gain. I seem to recall it was partly due to quality falling off around the edges, and I guess pairing it up with a smaller chip kinda helps in that area? Or were the Pentax locals just out to lunch? Seems I even remember reading the same thing in magazines. I asked the local Pentax historian and his opinion of the 1.2 was as stated. Are we completely out to lunch?

John
My general opinion is here.

Do I think that there is a significant difference between the two? No, not really. Do I think that there are incredibly minor differences? Yes. Is it worth the money? Well, that depends on what you consider to be a lot of money. I got my A50/1.2 from a fellow forum member for a bargain $350 - I've seen people selling FA50/1.4s for $250. I would absolutely take the A50/1.2 for the extra $100.

One caveat - in my comparison I am careful to say that differences of such small magnitude could certainly be due to sample variation. As in, someone else's A50/1.2 might be worse than another person's 50/1.4 in all the regards I listed.
09-14-2007, 06:43 AM   #7
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Sean has done an extensive testing and comparison of all the 50mm and that is an amazing effort.

I have never used ZK counterpart but I love my A 50mm f1.2 very much. Its bokeh is really invincible, just a little hard to manual focus wide open ... For me, it is a lens to bring along in a rainy day or a stroll along dark alley. Fun to play around with.

Few shots to share

all shot wide open













Cheers
09-14-2007, 07:04 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by thePiRaTE!! Quote
With Zeiss ZKs available for Pentax, should the Pentax-A 50mm f1.2 still command the same money? Both can be had for about the same cost these days.

The Zeiss takes the cake over the 1.4 at Photozone which begs the question: How much better is the A1.2 (or is it) over the A-FA1.4? Is it more of the same with an extra stop?

Discuss!


Kelly.
Hi Kelly, I don't have the A1.2, but I do have the "K" version, and I've been pleased with it. Here are some shots I took when I first got the lens and did an LBA post on it.
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-your-photos/3052-you-allowed-fall-love-lens.html
Na(don't know the Zeiss, but I won't part with my Pentax 50 1.2)H2O

09-14-2007, 09:16 AM   #9
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Saltwater, great images. Now I know what my newly acquired A50/1.2 is capable of.
09-14-2007, 10:48 AM   #10
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Thanks for sharing your shots guys, very nice! They certainly do show the lens is a keeper. Perhaps then there is room in the world for both at that price point
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