Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
02-18-2012, 07:23 PM   #1
Pentaxian
VisualDarkness's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 4,439
35mm ltd or another macro?

I know what you're thinking, "oh no, not another one of these threads. Read the friggin reviews and decide for yourself". I also think exactly the same thing but I'm soon to go nuts over this question. I really want a macro and the DA 35mm 2.4 ltd speaks to me in the night, trying to make me click "buy". The question is, does it really suit me?

Mostly I takes "macro" shots of our animals at home and mostly of my fishes with my Sigma 70-200 2.8 macro. The working distance only make me scare the most shy ones of my fishes when I'm crawling around the aquarium but at the same time the distance to the aquarium enhances the risk of reflections in the glass and so on. A 35mm mounted on a tripod against the glass and a remote would probably enhance the quality of my pics but with the loss of the ability to recompose and extended waiting time for scared animals to reappear. Anyone who tried the lens for aquarium shots or similar?

Other bonuses are that the leans is extremely cheap for what you get, mobile and fills a well needed gap in focal length (normal AF prime, I got manual 50's.) for me. I already got a 70mm ltd for longer portrait and the sigma a decent 70-200 which I bought for sports but uses for everything from macro to wild birds.

A summary:
+ Cheap (almost the cheapest macro available new in Europe)
+ AF
+ Needed FL
+ Pretty fast
+ Compact to go with my 70mm for times when space and weight is an issue
+ Close shooting minimizes reflections in aquarium glass
+ I dream of it during the night
+ I like hood of the 70mm so probably this too
+ Build quality
+ I guess MF is good

- Close working distance scares animals
- Could be half a stop faster, but I don't really think it matters
- Can potentially shade the subject in extreme macro?
- No WR for those rainy, foggy or snowy days

I'm all over the place in this pretty stupid thread but I really need help deciding. Anything would be helpful.

02-18-2012, 07:36 PM   #2
Pentaxian
v5planet's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Seattle
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,904
I like to think of the 35Ltd as a general purpose lens at a middle-of-the-road focal length that JUST SO HAPPENS to have super close focus ability. If you are primarily interested in a lens for macro purposes, I think you will be better served with a longer lens. The minimum focus distance on the 35Ltd is absurdly close, by which I mean absurdly close:




For a fishtank this might be okay if you are patient, but I think you might also consider getting a polarizing filter for your 70-200 to see if that helps you cut through reflections.
02-18-2012, 07:53 PM   #3
Veteran Member
RioRico's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Limbo, California
Posts: 11,264
If you want 1:1 macro, anything shorter than 65mm means working REAL close. We generally think of such short lenses as being for studio work, and those 90mm or longer for field work. You can get the effect of a 35mm macro lens by reversing a manual 50mm camera lens and maybe adding a little extension (tubes). I'll suggest reading this article: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/152336-cheap-macro-b...lose-work.html
02-18-2012, 08:02 PM   #4
Pentaxian
VisualDarkness's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 4,439
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by v5planet Quote
I like to think of the 35Ltd as a general purpose lens at a middle-of-the-road focal length that JUST SO HAPPENS to have super close focus ability. If you are primarily interested in a lens for macro purposes, I think you will be better served with a longer lens. The minimum focus distance on the 35Ltd is absurdly close, by which I mean absurdly close:




For a fishtank this might be okay if you are patient, but I think you might also consider getting a polarizing filter for your 70-200 to see if that helps you cut through reflections.
The problem is that I want that "general purpose" and a macro and this thing does both in a small package. Shooting fish isn't necessarily always a macro thing and 35mm is good for whole-tank shots, the 70mm is already too long for that and have me pressed up against the opposite wall to get the shot of some of my tanks. Although you're correct in the fact that it takes more patience to get the close-ups and that a good CPL (got a 49mm for 50's and the 70mm that I haven't even tried) could help my 70-200, but I think I still want a lighter prime.

For the other types of macro I do outdoors that close working distance looks good as I'm tired of pushing a way a wall of snow and laying down 1m away in the snow to get shots of some moss. Working closer with a lighter lens would be a nice thing for those kind of shots.

Ps. Nice pic you got there!

02-18-2012, 08:12 PM   #5
Pentaxian
VisualDarkness's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 4,439
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
If you want 1:1 macro, anything shorter than 65mm means working REAL close. We generally think of such short lenses as being for studio work, and those 90mm or longer for field work. You can get the effect of a 35mm macro lens by reversing a manual 50mm camera lens and maybe adding a little extension (tubes). I'll suggest reading this article: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/152336-cheap-macro-b...lose-work.html
I've already read it and it was a thrill, great guide! I will soon have two Takumar 50mm 1.4, a Pentax-M 50mm 1.4 and a Chinon 50mm 1.7 so I guess got a nice setup for some tubes and reversal. I still wonder if that only see me getting more gear and soon a normal AF prime for other stuff. It would be nice to narrow down the stuff I already got and I already sold off some stuff.
02-18-2012, 08:42 PM   #6
Pentaxian
Bob from Aus's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Australia
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,080
35mm is great for plants which don't run away. You have said you mostly want to do animals. 35mm is unlikely to meet your macro needs.

I think getting the gear that is needed in the long run is better.
1. The 100mm WR macro is also an excellent lens and far better suited to doing your fish. The big issue is hunting on auto focus, but when I do macro i set my focus on manual and I move backwards and forwards. I almost always use flash, ether ring flash (don't screw it on for aquariums on the lens but let it rest on an angle) or a side mounted flash.
2. wait until sigma brings out the pentax mount 150 macro or an extremely long time for the sigma 180 macro.
02-19-2012, 01:58 AM   #7
Pentaxian
Jonathan Mac's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain
Posts: 3,905
QuoteOriginally posted by v5planet Quote
I like to think of the 35Ltd as a general purpose lens at a middle-of-the-road focal length that JUST SO HAPPENS to have super close focus ability. If you are primarily interested in a lens for macro purposes, I think you will be better served with a longer lens.
I agree entirely.
02-19-2012, 03:32 AM   #8
Pentaxian




Join Date: Nov 2011
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,615
For eliminating reflections, a rubber hood works wonders,
and might even be used to supplement a built-in hood
like the one on the DA 35 Macro Ltd.

If you're further away from the glass, say with a tele macro,
you could try custom-making a shield from stiffened black nylon
with a Velcro attachment, along the lines of the
Flex Lens Shade Flex Lens Shade A001 B&H Photo Video
but with all-round coverage.

02-25-2012, 07:56 AM   #9
Pentaxian
VisualDarkness's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 4,439
Original Poster
Hello once again guys! Short summary, you were right.

I've tried my Pentax-F 28-80 and kit lens 35mm to get an impression of how wide the lens really is. The result was clear as for most of the shots I wanted I would have had to be in the water to get close enough for any kind of macro. So either I check for longer macro's or get smaller tanks.
Though I still want the lens for other things I've written of the animal stuff for it.

Thanks!
02-25-2012, 08:11 AM   #10
Pentaxian
normhead's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Near Algonquin Park
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 23,717
Hey VD, you should be at my house... this question is driving me crazy at the moment.

We have a 21 ltd, and an FA 50 1.7, we love both of them. We want a second macro and a second long zoom.
We also would like something in the range of 35mm to be "half way " in between our other two primes.

But there are so many friggin issues.

1 DA 18-135 (which we own ) is really strong in the 35 mm range...so we aren't really getting much unless we go to a 31 ltd.. in terms of image quality. ANd the 31 ltd is a fortune, even second hand.)
2. The 35 2.8 macro looks from MTF numbers like it's not quite as strong as the DA 35 2.4, but it's $400 more. $400 is a lot to pay for macro.
3. The build quality of the DA 35 2.4 is not great, but at that price, you can buy a lot of them if one breaks.
4. The zooms that cover this range from Pentax, Tamron and Sigma are all great performers.
5. We have the Tamron 90 macro... now that's a lens I can hop up and down about.. as is the Pentax 100 WR macro.

I'm really starting to think I'll buy the DA 35 2.4 and save for the Tamron 70-200 2.8 macro. That covers the hole in my lens lineup.. and gets me the macro/ faster tele zoom I want somewhere down the line
But every day the wheels just keep spinning. There are just so many good lens choices in this focal length. Don't start looking for deals second hand, that just adds to the insanity.

Last edited by normhead; 02-25-2012 at 08:23 AM.
02-25-2012, 08:21 AM   #11
Pentaxian
VisualDarkness's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 4,439
Original Poster
Haha Normhead, you sounded just like my own head there!
Also at the same time I would like something better and faster than the kit with WR and non seem to offer really what I want. Heck, I think that I'll call Pentax and ask them to make the 25mm macro with WR for me.
02-25-2012, 09:15 AM   #12
Pentaxian
normhead's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Near Algonquin Park
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 23,717
QuoteQuote:
I think that I'll call Pentax and ask them to make the 25mm macro with WR for me.
You're not helping here... I already have the 21 ltd... 25 is too close. I'm going to call and ask them to drop the price of the the 31 ltd... to $500, just for a day.. of course then I'd need a 40 to fill the gap between 31 and 50... damn, you made me start thinking about it again... I'm going to go shovel my driveway now...now, my head hurts.
02-25-2012, 09:18 AM   #13
Pentaxian
VisualDarkness's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Uppsala, Sweden
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 4,439
Original Poster
I going to let the driveway shovel my head...my head hurts.
02-25-2012, 03:32 PM   #14
Pentaxian
Bob from Aus's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Australia
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,080
Hi
Sorry more people have not responded to your thread as you would have had a better consensus.

If you are doing fish and have glass tanks then flash at an angle will be OK for many species however some silver fish will look like crap using flash. The flash will stop the movement, reduce the problem with reflections etc etc. I have used flash for decades going through glass because you loose a lot of light going through glass and water. If the tanks are any kind of plastic use what ever lens you already have as the artificial glass is nver really flat and the problem with the surface will be worse than the crappiest lens.

I can't see a 35mm macro working for you unless you are doing small sharks. For aquarium fish (I mostly do marine invertebrates) I use a macro 70mm sigma or 100 pentax
02-25-2012, 03:43 PM   #15
Veteran Member
rparmar's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 8,783
QuoteOriginally posted by v5planet Quote
I like to think of the 35Ltd as a general purpose lens at a middle-of-the-road focal length that JUST SO HAPPENS to have super close focus ability. If you are primarily interested in a lens for macro purposes, I think you will be better served with a longer lens.
No more needs be said.
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!
35mm ltd, af, animals, aquarium, distance, glass, k-mount, ltd, macro, pentax lens, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
For Sale - Sold: Lenses: Tamron 18-200 macro / D-FA 100mm macro WR / DA 35mm 2.4 / FA 100 (Worl InlawBiker Sold Items 5 06-26-2011 09:19 PM
For Sale - Sold: DA 35mm/2.8 Macro Ltd, FA 50mm, DA L55-300mm, Pentax Macro Bellow Unite I (US) yurko_yr Sold Items 10 03-16-2011 07:09 PM
DA 35mm ltd macro vs tamron 28-75mm 2.8 macro ueda_masaki Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 23 08-30-2010 06:46 AM
For Sale - Sold: K10D, DA 35mm Macro, 2x Macro, 360FGZ Flash, 70-210mm f4, m42 adapter and lens drivel Sold Items 19 08-19-2008 04:53 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:01 PM. | See also: NikonForums.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