Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
12-28-2011, 01:36 PM   #46
Veteran Member
Docrwm's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Somewhere in the Southern US
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 11,275
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by TOUGEFC Quote
Yep , well the DA ltd's are slow anyway.
Well, the 40 is 2.8 which I would call fast in a zoom but in a prime I call it mediocre. 2.4 is faster but not "fast". IMHO, for a prime, you need <f2 to qualify as "fast". To the best of my recollection I believe that only 2 of the Limiteds are <f2 - the 77 & the 31. Some are f4

12-28-2011, 02:03 PM   #47
Veteran Member
dgaies's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Maryland / Washington DC
Posts: 3,917
QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Well, the 40 is 2.8 which I would call fast in a zoom but in a prime I call it mediocre. 2.4 is faster but not "fast". IMHO, for a prime, you need <f2 to qualify as "fast". To the best of my recollection I believe that only 2 of the Limiteds are <f2 - the 77 & the 31. Some are f4
All true, but there are many reasons to prefer the prime besides the fact that they are (generally) faster; smaller physical size and better IQ at common apertures are two (reasons). So even if the 40/2.8 isn't fast (for a prime), there are lots of reasons someone might prefer to shoot with it over something like the 16-50/2.8. Same with the 15/4 compared to the 12-24, or the 70/2.4 compared to the 50-135/2.8.

Last edited by dgaies; 12-28-2011 at 02:54 PM.
12-28-2011, 02:52 PM   #48
Pentaxian
twitch's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 4,571
QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
I hear you about the f issue but then by that reasoning many of the Limiteds are too slow for the price aren't they?
I agree, I traded a DA40 for a FA50 for mostly this reason and I'd love to sell my DA21 and buy a FA24 but I'm having a break from lens buying for a while
12-28-2011, 05:48 PM   #49
Veteran Member
RioRico's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Limbo, California
Posts: 11,264
QuoteOriginally posted by dgaies Quote
All true, but there are many reasons to prefer the prime besides the fact that they are (generally) faster; smaller physical size and better IQ at common apertures are two (reasons).
My indispensable FA50/1.4 (gotta-get-the-shot lens): 210g.
My superbly-rendering and ultra-DOF-controllable K50/1.2: 400g.
My ditto CZJ Tessar 50/2.8 (12 iris blades -- bokeh monster!): 110g.
My brutally sharp Schneider Betavaron 50-125mm enlarger zoom: 810g.
The average weight of all my other zooms (AF+MF) that cover 50mm: 330g.

The average cost of my primes (mostly used): US$30 each.
The average cost of my zooms (mixed new+used): US$260 each.
The average cost of my MF lenses (almost all used): US$20 each.
The average cost of my AF lenses (mixed new+used): US$280 each.

Weight and price differences can be significant. And except for the outlier Betavaron, nol zoom can compete with the IQ of a better prime.

12-28-2011, 06:04 PM   #50
Veteran Member
dgaies's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Maryland / Washington DC
Posts: 3,917
QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
My indispensable FA50/1.4 (gotta-get-the-shot lens): 210g.
My superbly-rendering and ultra-DOF-controllable K50/1.2: 400g.
My ditto CZJ Tessar 50/2.8 (12 iris blades -- bokeh monster!): 110g.
My brutally sharp Schneider Betavaron 50-125mm enlarger zoom: 810g.
The average weight of all my other zooms (AF+MF) that cover 50mm: 330g.

The average cost of my primes (mostly used): US$30 each.
The average cost of my zooms (mixed new+used): US$260 each.
The average cost of my MF lenses (almost all used): US$20 each.
The average cost of my AF lenses (mixed new+used): US$280 each.

Weight and price differences can be significant.
Yeah, I was going bring up reasons #3 and #4 as well (weight and price), but I replied to the thread while in the car on my iPhone, so I didn't want to get too wordy (my wife was driving, but it's still a PITA to type long replies on the tiny keyboard)

I don't have weights listed in my database, but I can tell you the difference in weight between my primes and zooms is huge (especially the Nikon AF zooms, which are really heavy). The cost difference between my zooms and primes actually wasn't as much as I expected it to be ($652-zoom vs $524-prime), although I suspect that selling off almost all my MF lenses (mostly primes) skewed things a bit. I'm down to a single MF lens, which happens to be a Nikon 50/1.2, so including that wouldn't exactly bring down the $524 average much at all
12-28-2011, 06:33 PM   #51
Veteran Member
jsherman999's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 8,228
My theory on the 40

QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Its only with expensive items that you should see that significant effect. When something is lower cost and yet rated subjectively higher that is a much stronger statement, under that class of theories. Basically it is astonishing that the 40 is rated as high as it is given its the lowest priced lens in the limited range.
The DA 40 holds a unique position: It's the least-expensive Limited, and probably because of that the one considered 'within reach' to a lot of buyers. The folks buying it are comparing it to their other lenses, which are probably kit zooms, maybe some MF lenses, maybe another FA (not Limited) prime... and it's a '10' compared to those other lenses, in their eye, so they rate it accordingly.

In other words: The low price gets it in the bag, and it usually shines like a '10' relative to the other lenses already in there.

(I used to own it - very sharp lens with incredible contrast - just not fast or wide enough, or long enough - too 'middle' for me.)


.
12-28-2011, 07:00 PM   #52
Veteran Member
creampuff's Avatar

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Singapore
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3,955
QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
The DA 40 holds a unique position: It's the least-expensive Limited, and probably because of that the one considered 'within reach' to a lot of buyers. The folks buying it are comparing it to their other lenses, which are probably kit zooms, maybe some MF lenses, maybe another FA (not Limited) prime... and it's a '10' compared to those other lenses, in their eye, so they rate it accordingly.

In other words: The low price gets it in the bag, and it usually shines like a '10' relative to the other lenses already in there.

(I used to own it - very sharp lens with incredible contrast - just not fast or wide enough, or long enough - too 'middle' for me.)

.
That's an excellent description.
As the cheapest Limited lens, it will obviously hold its own if one compares it to a typical collection of entry level lenses, legacy lenses and average consumer grade lenses. It's also the entry point for many people to acquire the other Limited or * lenses and when this point happens, as good as the DA 40mm Limited is, it starts to lose its allure because there are other lenses that can do more or do it differently.

I owned this lens twice. Yes it's a sharp lens that focuses quick but once the novelty of the compact size and build quality is over, it really is just a snapshot lens imo. F/2.8 just can't get the background blur enough for subject isolation and for a general prime that's not terribly fast. The FOV is just too much in the middle and the min focusing distance could be a little shorter. To me the DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited or DA 35mm f/2.4 has more to offer (closer focusing & lower price with a wider FOV), but I'm sure others might find the 40mm the perfect companion.

Last edited by creampuff; 12-28-2011 at 07:08 PM.
12-29-2011, 08:28 AM   #53
Pentaxian
Marc Sabatella's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Denver, CO
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 10,686
Indeed, focal length preference is personal. I actually very much prefer the very slight telephoto effect of the 40mm over the more generic look of 35mm, specifically because it is better at subject isolation. Wheeas if I really want to show more of the surroundings, 35mm is not wide enough. So for me, it's 35mm that is caught in the middle and not as useful as either 40mm or, say, 28mm. And I find f/2.8 more than sufficient for the sort of subject isolation I might be interested in for anything than very occasional "fine art" photography, for which I am happy to use my A50/1.7 or my DA70. But more often when shooting with a normalish FOV, I want only a bit of softening.

12-29-2011, 10:28 AM   #54
Site Supporter
mikeSF's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: East Bay Area, CA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,705
QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
The DA 40 holds a unique position: It's the least-expensive Limited, and probably because of that the one considered 'within reach' to a lot of buyers. The folks buying it are comparing it to their other lenses, which are probably kit zooms, maybe some MF lenses, maybe another FA (not Limited) prime... and it's a '10' compared to those other lenses, in their eye, so they rate it accordingly.

In other words: The low price gets it in the bag, and it usually shines like a '10' relative to the other lenses already in there.

(I used to own it - very sharp lens with incredible contrast - just not fast or wide enough, or long enough - too 'middle' for me.)


.
this is very likely the reason - well put, jay.
12-29-2011, 11:27 AM   #55
Veteran Member
Docrwm's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Somewhere in the Southern US
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 11,275
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by dgaies Quote
All true, but there are many reasons to prefer the prime besides the fact that they are (generally) faster; smaller physical size and better IQ at common apertures are two (reasons). So even if the 40/2.8 isn't fast (for a prime), there are lots of reasons someone might prefer to shoot with it over something like the 16-50/2.8. Same with the 15/4 compared to the 12-24, or the 70/2.4 compared to the 50-135/2.8.
Well, they managed to make the FA50/1.4 and do a pretty solid job on the IQ issue. Pancakes are nice but I've never really seen that as an advantage myself. It's hard for me to see the value in a prime with an f of 4 - isn't one of the hugely common complaints about the "kit lenses" that they are S-L-O-W? Well, what about the 21 at 3.2 and the 15 at 4.0?

Now the FA 31/1.8, FA 43/1.9, and FA 77/1.8 lineup makes sense to me - sharp, good IQ, AND fast. They're all older designs through, along with the FA50/1.4. Price is a speed bump but they do appear to have it all in what you would look for in a prime.
12-29-2011, 01:15 PM   #56
Veteran Member
dgaies's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Maryland / Washington DC
Posts: 3,917
QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Well, they managed to make the FA50/1.4 and do a pretty solid job on the IQ issue. Pancakes are nice but I've never really seen that as an advantage myself. It's hard for me to see the value in a prime with an f of 4 - isn't one of the hugely common complaints about the "kit lenses" that they are S-L-O-W? Well, what about the 21 at 3.2 and the 15 at 4.0?

Now the FA 31/1.8, FA 43/1.9, and FA 77/1.8 lineup makes sense to me - sharp, good IQ, AND fast. They're all older designs through, along with the FA50/1.4. Price is a speed bump but they do appear to have it all in what you would look for in a prime.
I'm not following your logic. The advantages of primes is that they are generally smaller, faster and have better IQ than zooms at a given focal length and aperture. Just because a particular prime lens is faster than its zoom counterpart doesn't take away its value. The 21/3.2 might not be much faster than the kit lens at 21mm, but it's a fraction of the size. This may not be a huge factor for you, but to others having a prime that's not much larger than the rear cap it sits in is important. The 15/4 might "only" be f/4, but most people find that aperture to be large enough for the type of shooting they do with the 15. Moreover, 15mm is a good bit wider than the kit lens, much smaller and has better IQ than the kit lens. So the fact that it's not faster than the kit lens is unimportant to most people as it is superior is many other ways to the kit lens.

Bottom line, as I mention in the previous post, being faster is only one way in which primes can be more desirable than zooms. In the case of many of the DA limiteds lenses, its not the aperture speed of the lens that distinguishes it from zooms, but the smaller size, better IQ and faster focusing that make it more appealing.
12-29-2011, 02:10 PM - 1 Like   #57
Site Supporter
Douglas_of_Sweden's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Stockholm
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3,353
The ratings in the lens review data base are not very consequent. Some pedestrian lenses gets high ratings, some rare great lenses gets modest ratings. I simply think that in many cases we have had some sort of inflation in the rating system. People are handing out to many 8, 9, 10's, while frankly most people have never used a lens that deserves a 10 rating. With a few exceptions, such lenses cost a lot. But it is natural to wish that your own lenses are stellar.

I never base a decision on what lens to buy on the average ratings in the data base. I do read the reviews, especially looking for the opinions of some members who's knowledge I have come to respect. For older lenses I find the information on Stans Pentax Photography site valuable. Like the forum lens data base, it is in the collection of qualitative opinions rather than quantitative ratings that has a value. For ratings, if you must have one, the rating in J L Colwell's data base is much more consequent.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
cost, k-mount, lens, lenses, limiteds, pentax lens, radio, ratings, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
AFTER QADDAFI: Oil Prices Will Tank, Stock Prices Will Soar jogiba General Talk 10 08-23-2011 05:08 PM
Pentax APS-C Lenses Prices and Reviews rm2 Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 9 11-15-2010 01:41 AM
Pentax lenses prices Andrzej Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 18 02-26-2010 09:58 AM
Prices for new DA lenses ogl Pentax News and Rumors 24 01-29-2008 11:01 AM
My Subjective Ratings on Pentax Lenses on Pentax DSLRs RiceHigh Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 8 02-20-2007 10:18 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:14 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top