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03-29-2012, 11:26 AM   #16
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I always pick my FA77 because of AF & compact size compared to 85mm.

03-29-2012, 11:37 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by zapp Quote
The FA 77 has a lens profile for Pentax software, the FA85 does not.
This is a non issue
03-29-2012, 01:23 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by deadwolfbones Quote
FWIW I can make the 77 Lim "purple fringe like crazy" as well. :P
Ha ha ditto. But I still think it's a fantastic lens and it goes everywhere with me. I don't have the A 85 to compare it to but I do have the gorgeous MF Contax Zeiss 85/1.4. I love both lenses but because the CZ is soooo much heavier the 77 takes pride of place in the bag 9 times out of 10.
03-29-2012, 01:30 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by dazthebald Quote
Which is the best short telephoto lens
I prefer the A* 85, it's better IMO

03-29-2012, 05:49 PM   #20
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I tend to look at my lenses as investments. I think that an A*85 or FA would retain or gain in value as time passes.
As the FA77 is still in production, price should be relatively stable.
But as people have mentioned, some gravitate towards the 77 since it's more compact.
It doesn't matter how good a lens is if you don't use it.
03-30-2012, 02:44 AM   #21
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Can you find a A*85 right now before you decide which one to buy?
03-30-2012, 05:08 AM   #22
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There one currently on Ebay for $1520 plus Postage from Japan
03-30-2012, 06:19 AM   #23
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If you are financially available, go for the A*85.
Keep in mind it is 2x expensive as FA77, but it won't be noticeably better than the FA77.

04-01-2012, 10:17 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by MegaPower Quote
Can you find a A*85 right now before you decide which one to buy?
nice to see another s2k/pentax owner.
04-02-2012, 01:37 AM   #25
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What about alternatives, such as the Zeiss 85mm F1.4 or a converted Leica. I am looking for the highest quality glass.
04-02-2012, 02:54 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by dazthebald Quote
the Zeiss 85mm F1.4 or a converted Leica. I am looking for the highest quality glass.
the current zeiss (cosina) 85mm f/1.4 isn't really any better than any other 85mm lens around, if you really want ne plus ultra optical quality I'm afraid things are going to get really expensive: The Contax 85mm f/1.2 version*, which is a legendary lens that commands stratospheric prices. The Leica 90mm f/2 APO Summicron-R or the Leica 80mm f/1.4 Summilux-R are two excellent choices. I use the 80mm f/1.4 Summilux-R on my Canon 1Ds MKIII for portraiture, which offers superior micro contrast and colour rendering when compared to the Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II

* Made By Carl Zeiss in Germany, I have seen versions of this lens in mint condition sell for as much as $6000 US - you have been warned. yes, the lens it is that good.

Last edited by Digitalis; 04-03-2012 at 03:19 AM.
04-02-2012, 03:18 AM   #27
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The A* 85mm f1.4 has a very solid feel, lovely focus action and is capable of some very high quality results. At maximum aperture it has pretty bad purple-fringing (annoying for some, but can be removed in PP) and a very shallow focus (which can be used to great effect), but you need good eyesight to make the best of it. The FA 77 f1.8 is very compact (in comparison) and again capable of very high quality results.
04-02-2012, 06:00 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
the current zeiss (cosina) 85mm f/1.4 isn't really any better than any other 85mm lens around
I was looking for a fast K-mount tele recently,
and found the ZK85/1.4 to be the best solution, at least for my needs.

For a start, at under four figures,
it was cheaper than the alternatives
(e.g. used FA*85 or A*85, both well over four figures).

The major advantage of the ZK85/1.4 is the superb quality at infinity.
On top of that, it is sharp in the center fully open,
which makes for very easy manual focusing.
Along with the ZK50/2MP and ZK35/2,
it's one of the few fast lenses that gives acceptable (to me)
sharpness across the APS-C frame fully open.
04-02-2012, 07:57 AM   #29
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Personally, I went for the K 85mm f1.8 and never regreted it. Go it for 200 $ and it's worth every penny!
04-02-2012, 10:42 AM   #30
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I bought a perfect condition Contax Zeiss 85/1.4 (CY mount) and had it converted to PK for $50. The lens cost me ca. $700 and is worth every penny.
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