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12-20-2010, 10:17 PM   #1
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Comparison between a Pentax 31mm Ltd and a Carl Zeiss Distagon T* 35mm

When I got the Pentax 31mm Ltd I was delighted about it and still am, however I wanted a dedicated manual focus lens so I decided to buy a Zeiss 35mm, the price was right

These shots were simply taken, no scientific approach, I was just in a park, had both lenses and just wanted to see the difference between the two. I used a K7 body, iso 100, centre weighted metering and manual focusing on both. I adjusted focus till I thought it was right in the viewfinder and took the photo as this is how I usually take my photos, so in essence I was testing them to my preferences. So if the photos seem soft it could just be me...

The following photos were taken at the len's respective maximum apertures and focus set to 0.3m, which I then rocked back and forward till it seemed in focus and took the shot.

31mm flower 30cm f1.8 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
35mm flower1 30cm f2 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

These I tried to focus on different areas but with the same settings as above

31mm flower f1.8a | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
31mm flower f1.8 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

35mm flower f2 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
35mm flower f2a | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

These were taken at a distance and I tried to manual focus on the blue flower in the middlish.

31mm fine focus attempt | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
35mm fine focus attempt f2 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!


I have taken more and its probably easier to just look at my flickr page

Flickr: flyboy_falcon23's Photostream

to have a look. If you want any crops etc just email me and I'll try to post some on flickr as soon as I can.

All that I can say is the Zeiss does manual focus a lot nicer than the Pentax but you can't manual focus all the time and the Pentax is much lighter. As for image quality well I can't complain about either, both do a stunning job.

12-21-2010, 01:02 AM   #2
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Digitalis's Avatar

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Location: Adelaide.
Posts: 8,792
The warmer rendering of the FA31 appears to be rather stark in comparison to the Zeiss. Was the WB the same for both images?
12-21-2010, 05:34 AM   #3
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AWB used

Unfortunately I used AWB, so it could account for the difference in temperature. I usually edit WB in lightroom before converting to jpeg but in this case there is no editting at all. I thought the camera would have used the same settings... virtually all the same conditions. Oh well maybe I have to take a more methodical approach next time.
09-27-2013, 06:24 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Albuquerque, NM
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Way late, but thanks for this comparison! Any thoughts after owning both for a while?

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