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03-29-2012, 12:29 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Presuming you are shooting digital, the A100/2.8 isn't a good choice. While the lens is excellent, I have problems with reflections off the back element to to sensor causing ghosting.
I'm looking at purchasing the DFA 100/2.8 macro, on the presumption that since it is designed for digital, it won't have the same rear element reflectivity problem.
I guess all the FA's regardless of focus length would have the same ghosting problem? When is it more likely to occur?


03-29-2012, 12:46 AM   #17
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Let's have a look at the other end of the price/size scale. The Voigtländer Apo Lanthar 90 was discontinued recently - too slow for other work than "just" macro. I would actually expect a replacement more similar to the Apo Lanthar 125 at f/2.5-2.8. This should bring prices for used 125 mm lenses way down - prices are becoming insane, more expensive than the Zeiss macro Planar that you can still get new and which offers an additional f-stop.
I have the Pentax DFA version of the 100 macro. It is a fairly nice lens with some little flaws, like no focus limiter, old-fashioned AF - not overly expensive for a 100 macro, but there are cheaper lenses. I am thinking about replacing it for the Zeiss 2/100 as I prefer the gain of one f-stop over live size macro (Zeiss is 1:2 without extension tube). What I like about the Pentax lens - small and lightweight, 49mm filter size is in line with many Pentax lenses, WR is nice (but not the key reason to keep it), IQ is fine. The Voirländer 125 would add a litte more focal length and is still compact with 58 mm filter diameter - the other Pentax filter size found in the 31/55... - not too long ago an old 125 Voigtländer sold fpr $2500 here. Let's see what photokina will bring next from Voigtländer. In the mean time the Zeiss is top of the list. Larger aperture is a key feature, IQ at f/2 is comparable if not better than for the Pentax version at f/2.8 - meaning you can use it wide open. This is a perfect low light lens and nice for macro. Zeiss may introduce the 1.8/135 for other lens mounts at photokina. That lens is only offered in Sony mount right now - but they do not care about Pentax, so there will probably be no Pentax mount. A large apeture Pentax tele is missed here.
So the DFA from Pentax will stay a little longer in my bag, I would say. The FA is probably the same optical fomula.
03-29-2012, 02:13 AM   #18
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Is this too radical? Even though I have the splendid Vivitar-Komine 90/2.8 macro, my favorite close-shooting tool is... a Novoflex Noflexar 105/3.5 enlarger lens on a small M42 Bellowscope. I use it both for 1:1 macro and a a general-purpose short tele. The combo weighs about 360g vs the Vivitar's 480g. Total cost, with cheap wide-flange M42-PK adapter, was under US$50.

And using the lightweight bellows gives me a feeling a freedom I don't get with camera or camera-macro lenses. It's a totally different tactile sensation, a different way of holding the camera and interacting with the lens. Even though as a short tele it has the same AOV as a 100mm camera lens, the FOV just doesn't seem as narrow; the world seems more accessible. Try it and see.
03-29-2012, 07:37 AM   #19

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QuoteOriginally posted by zapp Quote
Let's have a look at the other end of the price/size scale. The Voigtländer Apo Lanthar 90 was discontinued recently - too slow for other work than "just" macro.
That's not my experience.
I've found it to be perfectly usable for all sorts of assignments,
including sports action in poorly lit gymnasiums.
It's already sharp at its maximum aperture,
like most of the DA Limited lenses.

QuoteOriginally posted by zapp Quote
What I like about the Pentax lens - small and lightweight
That's exactly what I like about the Voigtländer Apo Lanthar 90.

03-29-2012, 08:33 AM   #20
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I have an FA 100 and have been quite satisfied with it. I've even taken pictures in the garden at night with my bike helmet light for illumination. It's not a light lens, but I presume no 100mm macro lens will be. Plus, it's an odd-looking beastie.

It does double as a nice telephoto, though the long focus through means it's not the fastest lens to shift from 6 inches to 60 feet.

paper wasp on pussywillow | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
Affinis 081711b | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

As close-tele:
Hummer 1 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
03-29-2012, 08:57 AM   #21
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If you're looking to cheap-out on a lens, here's a good one.

(Promaster 100mm 1:3.5 MC Macro, manual focus)

I paid $60 for it a few days ago here on the forum, and honestly, I'm blown away by how sharp this thing is. Other than a tiny bit of PF once in awhile, I can find nothing bad to say about it. It's a keeper.
03-29-2012, 11:49 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by bassek Quote
I guess all the FA's regardless of focus length would have the same ghosting problem? When is it more likely to occur?

I think the problem has to do with a combination of the FREE design and the very flat rear element. I use a lot of manual focus and FA lenses (Limiteds) and the reflection thing has been unique to the A100/2.8. I don't know if the FA100/2.8 macro suffers, I haven't heard any complaints about it.
It shows up as a veiling flare over part of the frame.
If you look at the following picture you will see a faint round flare spot on the focusing ring:
I shot that picture with the A100/2.8 macro. All it takes is a fairly bright background.
03-29-2012, 12:08 PM   #23
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I've been shooting with my FA100/2.8 Macro for a couple months now, in a variety of conditions, and haven't noticed any flare or ghosting.

I just popped it off the body, and the rear element is rather concave, not at all flat.


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