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01-15-2011, 05:36 AM   #1
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Any rumors of a DA 50mm 1.7 or 1.8?

Just curious if there is any rumors or news of Pentax putting out a DA 50 1.7 or 1.8 prime, or for that matter producing more of the FA 50 1.7's. Just to be sure, FA are from the old film models and are out of production right?

I have an M version, and it's quite nice, but man I would love to get my hands on a model with auto focus, especially if it were conveniently priced at around $100. Now that everyone and their brother has a k-x, k-r or k-5 it would seem a good time to put them in production, right?

01-15-2011, 06:35 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Metalwizards Quote
Just curious if there is any rumors or news of Pentax putting out a DA 50 1.7 or 1.8 prime, or for that matter producing more of the FA 50 1.7's. Just to be sure, FA are from the old film models and are out of production right?

I have an M version, and it's quite nice, but man I would love to get my hands on a model with auto focus, especially if it were conveniently priced at around $100. Now that everyone and their brother has a k-x, k-r or k-5 it would seem a good time to put them in production, right?
The FA50/1.4 is still in production and sells for a little over $300 new. The FA50/1.7 has been discontinued for some time and I don't believe there are any plans to bring it back, nor introduce a DA50/1.7.

The least expensive 50mm AF option at this point is a used F50/1.7, which usually sells for around $200.
01-15-2011, 12:26 PM - 1 Like   #3
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i've been wishing and waiting for a cheap (<$150) fast 50mm since i got my k100d back in the day. considering SoCaNikon all have one in their lineup you would think that pentax would follow...

but pentax is not about following the other guys. sometimes that's a good thing and other times not so much.

i don't know about everyone else but i don't expect anything faster than f2.4 to appear in the DA lineup, well, ever. (although i secretly hope that pentax proves me wrong).
01-15-2011, 04:08 PM   #4
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That's a little frustrating, but I guess it just means I have to save a little longer for the superior FA 50mm 1.4 ... still I'd imagine pentax would make a truckload on a 1.7 or 1.8 lens.

The FA 50mm 1.4 is a fantastic piece of glass right?

01-15-2011, 04:36 PM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Metalwizards Quote
That's a little frustrating, but I guess it just means I have to save a little longer for the superior FA 50mm 1.4 ... still I'd imagine pentax would make a truckload on a 1.7 or 1.8 lens.

The FA 50mm 1.4 is a fantastic piece of glass right?
Some people like the FA50/1.4 more than others. I think it's a nice piece of glass capable of producing fantastic images. It falls a little short of other Pentax offerings (FA43/1.9, DA*55/1.4), but both of those options cost almost twice as much. The build quality is decent, but not great. The lens really needs a hood to perform at it's best, especially at apertures below f/2.8. The most common complaint is "softness wide open", which I personally think is overblown to some extent. That said, the FA50/1.7 is a little sharper than the FA50/1.4 up until about f/2.8 (even if you're using a hood on the FA50/1.4).

There are quite a few threads on here you can check out which compare the FA50/1.4 to other similar lenses; that might help you decide.
01-15-2011, 07:22 PM   #6
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I think that 50mm focal length doesn't work quite as well on a cropped sensor as it does on 35mm. I like lenses either a little shorter (like the DA 40) or a little longer, but each person is different.

The FA 50 is a very nice lens. As dgaies says, it is a little soft wide open and suffers from loss of contrast when there are strong light sources in the frame or near the frame.

The FA 43 and DA 55 are both sharper (and better built), but a lot more expensive.

One thing to remember is that all of the Pentax 50mm f1.4 lenses have the same optical formula, so if you don't mind manual focus, there are an awful lot of options out there for cheap.

Edit: Sorry, I also did not see that you already have a manual focus 50mm lens.

Last edited by Rondec; 01-16-2011 at 05:16 AM.
01-15-2011, 07:57 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I think that 50mm focal length doesn't work quite as well on a cropped sensor as it does on 35mm. I like lenses either a little shorter (like the DA 40) or a little longer, but each person is different.
Agreed. When I only owned the FA35 and FA50, I was using the 35 the vast majority of the time. Both the DA35/2.4 and the DA40/2.8 are good options if you don't mind the slower aperture and are priced around $200 and $300, respectively.

QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
The FA 50 is a very nice lens. As dgaies says, it is a little soft wide open and suffers from loss of contrast when there are strong light sources in the frame or near the frame.

The FA 43 and DA 55 are both sharper (and better built), but a lot more expensive.

One thing to remember is that all of the Pentax 50mm f1.4 lenses have the same optical formula, so if you don't mind manual focus, there are an awful lot of options out there for cheap.
I believe the K50 and M50/1.4 are slightly different optically that the A, F and FA50/1.4 (the three of which are the same). Even so, I don't think the difference is significant and as Rondec said you can save a substantial amount over the FA50/1.4 if you don't mind manually focusing. A used K or M50/1.4 usually sell for about $80-120, while the A50/1.4 is typically around $140-180 (depending on condition). FWIW, the M, A, F, and FA50/1.7 all have the same optical formula and you can usually find a used M50/1.7 or A50/1.7 for about $50 or $100, respectively.

EDIT: just noticed in the OP's original post that he (or she) already has the M50/1.4, so you can probably ignore the above paragraph
01-15-2011, 08:35 PM   #8
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I still think it would be cool to resurrect the M / A series 50mm f/2 in a DA version, and sell it in the neighborhood of $100 - $150. It probably won't happen, but a man can dream.

01-15-2011, 09:32 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Steve Beswick Quote
I still think it would be cool to resurrect the M / A series 50mm f/2 in a DA version, and sell it in the neighborhood of $100 - $150. It probably won't happen, but a man can dream.
Or DA L even.
01-15-2011, 11:18 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Metalwizards Quote
Or DA L even.
That would be fine with me - by any practical measure the 35mm f/2.4 is a DA L, and I would love to have one of those. If they got it down around the $100 mark they could compete with the Canon 50mm f/1.8.
01-16-2011, 12:28 AM   #11
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There are SOOOOOOO many 50 mm f/2 lenses on ebay But I guess if you want autofocus then you have a tougher time.
01-16-2011, 12:50 AM   #12
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The F 50 1.7 deserves to be released in a plastic DA L shell. sold for slightly less than the DA 35 2.4.
01-16-2011, 01:10 AM   #13
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I think in Pentaxs mind the DA 55mm f1.4 is the digital replacement for the 50mm focal length so I don't figure that they will release a DA 50mm. I've had some LBA episodes over the DA 55mm because I've seen some wonderful photos posted from it.

I have the DFA 50mm f2.8 and even though it is not as fast, it has given me photos that exceeded my wildest expectations so I haven't been able to justify the 55mm.
01-16-2011, 05:21 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
The F 50 1.7 deserves to be released in a plastic DA L shell. sold for slightly less than the DA 35 2.4.
I agree. The only thing I can think is that Pentax thinks that they have the 50mm focal length pretty covered between the FA 50, DA *55 and FA 43. It never used to be an issue, because the FA 50 f1.4 sold for around 200 dollars, which wasn't that much more expensive than the competitors f1.8 lenses.

At the same time, I doubt Pentax could get even a plastic fantastic lens priced much below 180 or 190 US dollars due to the yen/dollar exchange rate right now and also the fact that have a tiny portion of the market compared to Nikon or Canon.
01-16-2011, 06:42 AM   #15
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I have the feeling that Pentax will come with a cheapish line of primes as they have to compete with the cheap offerings of the competition. I think the DA-L35/2.4 is an indication for this.
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