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11-16-2010, 08:30 AM - 1 Like   #1
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SMC Pentax-FA 135mm F2.8 [IF] mini-review

I took some photos for the potential buyer of this lens, so thought I'd sahre incase anyone is interested in the future.

I've only had this lens a short while, but despite IQ being great I can't really get on with this FL. I also have in the back of my mind it would be covered pretty much just as well by a 50-135 or 70-200 f/2.8, albeit with a size and weight penalty.

It's going to be replaced by a FA50, or FA77, as these sort of FL have a fast aperture you can't replicate with a zoom.

In short - great lens, if you find the length useful. It is adequately sharp (if a little soft in the corners) at f/2.8, and is sharp as pretty much anything I've used by about f/4-f/5.6.

Kind of makes me feel like keeping it!

Please excuse the unscientific nature of my testing - handheld, only up to f/8 etc. All the test shots were taken straight from the in-camera JPEG with no post processing.

Lens itself:

Brick overview:

Brick centre @ f/2.8:

Brick centre @ f/4:

Brick centre @ f/5.6:

Brick centre @ f/8:

Brick top left @ f/2.8:

Brick top left @ f/4:

Brick top left @ f/5.6:

Brick top left @ f/8:

Text overview:

Text centre @ f/2.8:

Text centre @ f/4:

Text centre @ f/5.6:

Text centre @ f/8:

Text top left @ f/2.8:

Text top left @ f/4:

Text top left @ f/5.6:

Text top left @ f/8:

And a couple of snaps:

11-16-2010, 09:19 AM   #2
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Thanks for this post and good points. I have a Sears 135 and a Takumar Bayonet 135. I got them for just for fun but I too can't seem to get into this FL for a cropped sensor camera. Oddly (or perhaps not so oddly) when I shoot this FL on my old Minolta film camera, it's just right.
11-16-2010, 09:20 AM   #3
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Great shots! Thanks for taking the time and sharing.

I've been on the lookout for the F version, which I believe is optically the same as your FA. Seems like it would be a hard lens to part with... But that 77mm Limited you mentioned would certainly be pretty sweet.
11-17-2010, 12:17 AM   #4
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Pretty sure the F and FA are almost identical, including rubbish MF ring...! Lightning fast AF makes up for this, however.

11-17-2010, 05:54 AM   #5
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I, for one, love the 135~150 focal length. Very useful in many situations, including weddings, shows, etc. I have a M150 f3,5 that I love using in those situations, but I'm not really good at MF, sadly.

Right now though all I can think about is the word BETRAYAL again and again...

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