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01-11-2012, 06:55 AM   #1
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pentax da 16-45mm lens.

Hi, i just received a second hand pentax da 16-45. f4 mm lens, today. I have managed to take some shots and took several as a comaprision with my 18- 55mm wr kit lens. I have to say i am really disappointed. The 16-45mm does not seem any sharper what soever, compared to the kit lens. I had read the reviews on this site regarding the 16-45mm, and decided it would be the perfect upgrade to the kit lens. Reviews on the 16-45mm have commented on its sharpness, which i just dont see in my copy. Unfortunately, the battery in my camera ( pentax k5) is dead, so cant take any more shots for a while and investigate further. Also this lens was described as near mint condition and was appaerently only bought a year ago by the seller, who offered no refunds!, so i dont know how i would stand returning it because i dont think its sharp enough. Anyone have this lens? or even both lenses and have any advice? - would be much appreciated!. -Thanks, mary.

01-11-2012, 06:58 AM   #2
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Can you let us know how are you taking these shots? Tripod? Hand held? Sample pictures to show us?

I understand that the 16-45 is sharper than the kit lens, but I imagine it'd be hard to tell the difference at F8 since the kit lens is pretty amazing at F8. However, the kit lens is terrible wide open, so maybe you want to start comparing from there.
01-11-2012, 07:13 AM   #3
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You might try manual focus using live view, it could be that you will need to use the in-body focus adjustment. I've owned the 16-45 before and liked it, but I prefer WR so I do not have a copy now. Sorry your experience hasn't been good - yet.
01-11-2012, 07:16 AM   #4
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All, shots i took were handheld. I dont have any shots to show as yet. I agree, f8 did seem to be best of the lot, however i went through a lot of different apertures from f4 - f 13, couldnt see any great difference in the lenses. also ive read reviews were owners of the 16-45mm have thought it aslo served as a great macro lens? - i find this incredible to believe with my version of this lens, but I primarily, bought this lens as a landscape lens, also hoping it would serve as a general walk around one as well. Am i expecting too much from the 16-45mm? should it be the better lens of the two? - thanks -mary.

01-11-2012, 07:18 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by jimr-pdx Quote
You might try manual focus using live view, it could be that you will need to use the in-body focus adjustment. I.
Hi, will try live view when battery in camera is charged, but with regards to in body focus adjustment, could you elaborate? thanks,mary
01-11-2012, 07:33 AM   #6
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It SHOULD be better. If you can throw up some sample shots at F4, F5.6 (full size shots if possible, if not crop the center so it shows up as 100% here) that would be great. You may just have a weaker copy.

And jimr-pdx has a good tip, manual focus to make sure your lens isn't mis-focusing.
01-11-2012, 07:34 AM   #7
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IMHO, the DA16-45/4 is optically great but Pentax went too far packaging it in a substandard toy like body which has difficulty maintaining the proper optical alignment. My impression is that Pentax didn't care much on optical alignment as fishing for a perfectly aligned Pentax lens can be tedious.
01-11-2012, 07:44 AM   #8
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Try again with the fully charged battery. I have found that with a less than fully charged battery, my K-5 focuses all over the place. I have the 16-45 and it is head and shoulders above the kit lens. Don't give up on it yet, you may have to do some minor AF adjustments as I did with some lenses, but it will be worth it.

01-11-2012, 10:05 AM   #9
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My 16-45 back focuses, and also focuses past infinity. Needless to say, this can easily result in shots in which nothing is in sharp focus. If you have a newer camera than I do (K10D), which allows AF adjustment, you might want to look into that.
01-11-2012, 10:15 AM   #10
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Here is my copy compared to my WR kit lens at 24mm, f4, center and corner, 100% crops. Mine is still better than the kit lens at f8, just less of a difference. In real-world shots, the 16-45 has better colors and contrast too.



01-11-2012, 11:52 AM   #11
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Thanks for all your replies. Will try and persevere with the lens later when battery is charged and have ago at af adjustment. Fingers crossed that works, as the seller is refusing a refund!. Thanks to "just1moredave" for your post. I can see now that the 16-45mm is better than the 18-55mm, only with my shots today, the results were the other way round! - will keep you updated, thanks!!
01-11-2012, 07:34 PM   #12
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16-45 DA vs 18-55 DA

Hi Mary,
I hope you have better luck with the 16-45 DA than you did on the first try.
I owned a kit lens for a while but once I got the 16-45, stopped using the 18-55.
I saw a big difference in sharpness and contrast, color rendition and pretty much any other way you might evaluate lenses against each other.
Not that the kit lens is bad, in fact I think it's one of the better "budget" offerings from any maker. But it's not GREAT, especially at wider apertures.
I am totally satisfied with the 16-45, for the price it's a great value!
JMO,
Ron
01-12-2012, 05:28 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by focus Quote
Hi, i just received a second hand pentax da 16-45. f4 mm lens, today...
What makes you think your 'second hand' copy of the lens is representative? There's got to be a reason why it was sold. Perhaps the previous owner did something to it and decided to get rid of it rather than fix it.

My copy of the lens is excellent.

My advice is to return it for a refund, then get a new one.

Good luck and cheers... M
01-12-2012, 06:11 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Michaelina2 Quote
What makes you think your 'second hand' copy of the lens is representative? There's got to be a reason why it was sold. Perhaps the previous owner did something to it and decided to get rid of it rather than fix it.

My copy of the lens is excellent.

My advice is to return it for a refund, then get a new one.

Good luck and cheers... M
Pretty much what I was thinking. A properly functioning 16-45 beats an 18-55 convincingly. My 16-45mm went off once, possibly due to a fall. The only symptom was soft photos. I sent it in for repair and it's back to 100%.

OP, you need to do some formal testing vs the kit lens. Use a rest or tripod and 2 second shutter delay for stability. The 16-45 should be sharper at any aperture, any focal length.

Last edited by audiobomber; 01-12-2012 at 11:03 AM.
01-12-2012, 10:51 AM   #15
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My 16-45 is very sharp even wide open.
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