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06-24-2011, 02:59 PM   #46
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Who is going to use 6 DA40's anyway?

On to a similarly useful piece of information, what is the airspeed velocity of a coconut-laden swallow?



African or European?


Last edited by GeneV; 06-24-2011 at 03:09 PM.
06-24-2011, 09:02 PM   #47
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What we have here is the classic zoom vs. prime debate. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, and only you can decide which suits your needs best. But, if I may add a new ingredient to the discussion, since you are considering a DA*16-50, you might also consider an FA31 Limited, which is in the same price range. It is one of the finest lenses made by any manufacturer and has a focal length that is more useful for general purpose photography than the DA40.

Just a thought to keep you awake at night.

Rob
06-24-2011, 10:07 PM   #48
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At least with the FA 31 ltd, there will be no problem with the SDM.
06-25-2011, 05:56 AM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by robgo2 Quote
What we have here is the classic zoom vs. prime debate. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, and only you can decide which suits your needs best. But, if I may add a new ingredient to the discussion, since you are considering a DA*16-50, you might also consider an FA31 Limited, which is in the same price range. It is one of the finest lenses made by any manufacturer and has a focal length that is more useful for general purpose photography than the DA40.

Just a thought to keep you awake at night.

Rob
My usual zoom solution is a DA17-70 with a DA40 in the pocket or FA35/2 in the bag for lower light. As tempting as many aspects of the DA* may be, I've always been a bit spooked about its various issues.

06-25-2011, 06:33 AM   #50
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QuoteOriginally posted by GeneV Quote
spooked about its various issues
Me too.

Curious why you don't bring your 40 f2 along for low light? The Voightlander?
06-25-2011, 12:30 PM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
Me too.

Curious why you don't bring your 40 f2 along for low light? The Voightlander?
The DA40 is basically free in terms of size and weight. The VL Ultron is almost twice as big and more than twice as heavy as the DA40--more like the FA43 but a bit heavier than the 43. It is funny, but the difference is significant if you are just grabbing it and putting it in your pocket. It is also always on one of my film bodies, and often with a filter. I bought the Ultron primarily for film, but I really should get around to using it on a DSLR.

If I want low-light capability for digital in the bag, the FA35/2 is lighter and can autofocus.
06-25-2011, 12:35 PM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
Me too.

Curious why you don't bring your 40 f2 along for low light? The Voightlander?
The DA40 is basically free in terms of size and weight. The VL Ultron is about twice as big and twice as heavy as the DA40--about the size of the FA43. It is funny, but the difference is significant if you are just grabbing it and putting it in your pocket. The Ultron is also always on one of my film bodies, and often with a filter. I bought the Ultron primarily for film, but I should get around to using it on a DSLR.

If I want low-light capability for digital in the bag, the FA35/2 is lighter and can autofocus.

Last edited by GeneV; 06-26-2011 at 03:03 PM.
06-26-2011, 06:59 AM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by robgo2 Quote
What we have here is the classic zoom vs. prime debate. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, and only you can decide which suits your needs best. But, if I may add a new ingredient to the discussion, since you are considering a DA*16-50, you might also consider an FA31 Limited, which is in the same price range. It is one of the finest lenses made by any manufacturer and has a focal length that is more useful for general purpose photography than the DA40.

Just a thought to keep you awake at night.

Rob
Maybe for you, but I find the DA40 more useful.

06-26-2011, 03:18 PM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ahab Quote
Maybe for you, but I find the DA40 more useful.
The difference between 31mm and 40mm is significant, but even more importantly, the utility of each lens (and the zoom) should be considered. The 40 is not *really* a normal lens... it's a very mild telephoto. The 31 would certainly be normal. The 31 has superior bokeh, and dof control, but if you plan on shooting more stopped down, the differences there might be negligible. It depends on what, and how, you like to shoot. I like DOF control in the tele range, but for normal shots, f2.8 - f4 is the norm (for me). It makes capturing a scene both easy and more pleasing (in my eyes).

This is largely a matter of personal taste, but I think the subject should always be considered. 31mm is very versatile, but so is 40mm. What is most important here is the necessity for DOF control. Some subjects require it... for other applications, the 31 may well be a waste of fine glass.

Keep in mind that the DA 40 has only 20% less DOF control (assuming the exact same shooting distance) than the 31. The 31 unquestionably has better bokeh. So the real question is whether you want the larger, more expensive lens, for:

A) the focal length (do you like 31 better)
B) dof control (that extra 20%)
C) bokeh quality

I think the 40mm is a fine deal, very versitile, and a nice way to get some limited love without blowing your budget. The portability of the lens is also something to be considered - you will never be without it because it will fit almost anywhere.
06-26-2011, 05:01 PM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ahab Quote
Maybe for you, but I find the DA40 more useful.
Focal length preferences are highly personal, but 31mm corresponds to a traditional wide normal lens. It sits comfortably between the "normal" 50mm and the classic street-shooting 35mm (in 35mm format terms.) 40mm corresponds to a slight telephoto. For general purpose shooting, I think that more people would find the former to be of greater use, but this is not a matter of divine law. Each to his own.

Rob
06-26-2011, 06:15 PM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by robgo2 Quote
Focal length preferences are highly personal, but 31mm corresponds to a traditional wide normal lens. It sits comfortably between the "normal" 50mm and the classic street-shooting 35mm (in 35mm format terms.) 40mm corresponds to a slight telephoto. For general purpose shooting, I think that more people would find the former to be of greater use, but this is not a matter of divine law. Each to his own.

Rob
So true. It is highly personal and also something of a question of experience and habit. My first SLR in the early 70s had a 55mm "normal" lens, and for decades I always saw "normal" as the FOV of 35-40mm on APS-c. Only recently have I come to appreciate the FOV of 40mm as a normal lens on film. My 28/2 (FA31 is too expensive) is starting to appeal more on APS-c. I still love my DA40, too.

Last edited by GeneV; 06-26-2011 at 06:22 PM.
06-26-2011, 06:16 PM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by robgo2 Quote
Focal length preferences are highly personal, but 31mm corresponds to a traditional wide normal lens. It sits comfortably between the "normal" 50mm and the classic street-shooting 35mm (in 35mm format terms.) 40mm corresponds to a slight telephoto.
History is involved. I'll throw out some numbers here. The equivalences I'll mention are ONLY for angle of view (AOV), not DOF nor any other attributes.

Normal focal length is defined as about equal to the diagonal of the frame (film or sensor). Before the advent of 35mm SLRs, many cameras in many formats had a near-'normal' prime as the built-in or kit lens. Common lenses on MF cameras followed this rule: 6x6 (n=79mm) usually had 75-80mm glass, 69x (n=101mm) had 100-105mm lenses, etc. For 135/FF (full-frame 35mm film cameras) that 'normal' length is 43mm. And we see many 135/FF fixed-lens rangefinders with 45mm lenses, close enough.

But 135/FF SLRs have a swinging mirror, which limits how close a lens can extend towards the frame. Lenses less than 50mm need special 'retrofocal' (wide angle) elements to avoid impact. Our Nifty Fifty's evolved because that door wouldn't hit their butts. So Fifty's became standard, and generations of pre-zoom 135/FF shooters grew up with a short tele in the 50-55-58mm range as their kit lens.

[Nit-picking note: Lenses with longer-than-normal focal lengths are often called teles. Technically only lenses with optic-stretching telephoto elements should bear that label. Those without such elements are just long lenses. But we call them teles anyway. Go figure.]

Normal on 135/FF is 43mm. For 135/HF (half-frame) and true APS-C, normal is 30mm. The sensor on my K20D is slightly smaller, with a diagonal of 28mm -- and 28mm has become my favorite, so I'm boringly normal, eh? On my K20D, a 35mm lens is a short tele, equivalent to 50mm on 135/FF. (I never did really like that focal length's AOV.)

And the DA40/2.8 under discussion here? That's equivalent to a Helios-44 58mm lens that was standard on many Soviet-era cameras! I've joked that the Sov's pushed 58mm either because 1) they wanted comrades to shoot more intimate portraits, or 2) they wanted people to STAND BACK when shooting anything else! Compare how you shoot, where you stand, when using 28mm vs 40mm lenses on your dSLR, eh? Test yourself with the 18-55 kit lens -- 28-30mm and 40mm are both in its sweet zone.

Given a fixed-lens camera, or just one prime, we become used to its focal length, its AOV. It thus becomes 'normal' for us. If all you have is a fisheye, the whole world looks fishy. Something like that.
06-26-2011, 06:25 PM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote

[Nit-picking note: Lenses with longer-than-normal focal lengths are often called teles. Technically only lenses with optic-stretching telephoto elements should bear that label. Those without such elements are just long lenses. But we call them teles anyway. Go figure.
That nit bugs me just a little as well. I don't think that the 40 is a tele design at all.
06-26-2011, 06:39 PM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by robgo2 Quote
Focal length preferences are highly personal...
And this is why I much prefer zooms over primes. Last Friday I was at a parade / car show with my Sigma 17-70. I took almost 300 shots within an hour at a various focal lengths. Without the immediate flexibility of the zoom it would have been impossible to have even taken a fraction of the shots.

Primes are fine for static shots but when it comes to action, zooms rule.
06-26-2011, 06:41 PM   #60
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QuoteOriginally posted by GeneV Quote
That nit bugs me just a little as well. I don't think that the 40 is a tele design at all.
The DA40 is essentially the M40 without aperture ring. If anything, it's a retrofocal (wide-angle) design. Yet on APS-C it becomes a 'tele'. Go figure. [/me head explodes]

BTW back in the day, my fave SLR was the tiny 135/HF Olympus Pen-FT, with a 'normal' FL of 30mm -- but its kit lens was 38mm. Talk about a pancake! I could fit an entire system into one field-jacket pocket. Even the Kx seems big in comparison.

QuoteOriginally posted by JHD Quote
Primes are fine for static shots but when it comes to action, zooms rule.
Indeed. Manual primes are for when you can move to-and-fro on the subject. AF zooms are for when the subject moves to-and-fro on YOU.
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