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05-09-2012, 04:38 AM   #46
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I use to shoot with both lenses for a while. Took lots of photos with each of them, also did a few comparisons on my own. After spending about 1 year with both, I decided to keep the 77mm and sell the 70mm. Not that the 70 was bad, no, it's an excellent lens, but the 77mm was not just better, it has also a magic. The three FA Limiteds are the reason I'm back from Leica M after shooting with the best Leica has to offer. I'm not saying Leica lenses are not better than Pentax FA Limiteds they are technically better, and they provide their own magic as well. But the price/magic ratio is still unbeatable with Pentax FA Limiteds.

05-10-2012, 01:18 AM   #47
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Have the 77, never used the 70. Having gotten used to the bokeh of the 77, I won't change and see no reason to unless the 70 completely blew away the 77. If I were starting from scratch, it would be a much more difficult decision.

I'm surprised to see such a score for AF. The 77 is such a slug on my DS. Makes me wish it had quick shift.

Pentax could settle this once and for all if they re-released the 77 in sealed D-FA form with quick shift. One portrait lens to rule them all.
06-10-2012, 05:49 AM   #48
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I did ask this in another thread but that one probably won't get any attention now.
So instead of making a new thread I thought I'd bring this one back to life.

You guys have been awesome in the past with advise so I'm here to ask for a little more..

I currently have a K5 with a DA* 16-50 which I absoloutely love. I mainly shoot bands in low light.
I've been looking at these two lenses for a while now and recently got offered very good prices on both through a contact. However the 77mm is still a good $400 more expensive.

I've read reviews on them both but would really appreciate some real life advise.

Everyone is raving about the 77mm and I would really love that nice f/1.8 - at the moment I have f/2.8 so buying the 70mm would I only give me a slightly faster aperture speed with its f/2.4.
However, most of the bands I shoot are hardcore bands and they move fast, having the quick shift AF has probably been quite beneficial, I'm not sure how a lens without that would go in these situations... But is the faster aperture and longer focal length worth it?

Is buying the 70mm going to give me any advantage over my current lens except having a longer focal length? Will I get better image quality as its a prime?

Thoughts, feelings or advise?
06-10-2012, 07:39 AM   #49
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Hardcore moving bands in low light? Flick to MF and get a 50 f/1.2, the A version preferably. In my experience the K-5 AF will be boucing between front and back focusing depending on the light show, I don't trust the AF module anymore so I learned to depend on my katzeye and my eyes. If you don't want to follow this route, get a 2nd hand 77 and enjoy the benefits of a far sharper f/2.8 and dept of field as you go wider.

FA77 @ f/2.2, 1/60s, ISO6400


06-10-2012, 07:55 AM   #50
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QuoteOriginally posted by paceyy Quote
Everyone is raving about the 77mm and I would really love that nice f/1.8 - at the moment I have f/2.8 so buying the 70mm would I only give me a slightly faster aperture speed with its f/2.4.
However, most of the bands I shoot are hardcore bands and they move fast, having the quick shift AF has probably been quite beneficial, I'm not sure how a lens without that would go in these situations... But is the faster aperture and longer focal length worth it?

Is buying the 70mm going to give me any advantage over my current lens except having a longer focal length? Will I get better image quality as its a prime?
In my experience, the shallower DOF you would get shooting 77mm at f1.8 would make it quite difficult to get good results in concert photography, especially for an AF lens that lacks quick shift. Of course, no one would force you to use f1.8 all the time, and no denying it would sometimes be nice to have.

Wile it's true that f/2.4 isn't much faster than f/2.8, speed wouldn't be the main reason to get the 70 or the 77. Focal length and size/weight would be. No way would I want to to do concert photography with 50mm as my longest focal length - probably 90-95% of my shooting is well above that. I also prefer smaller/lighter.
06-10-2012, 04:17 PM   #51
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I've been using my *16-50 as my only lens at gigs for months Bare in mind I'm always close up though.
I've never felt like I needed a longer focal length, It'd be nice but I still get great close up shots with my current lens.



It also means I never miss these shots as I have the ability to go wide.



Regardless, it would be nice to have a prime as I'm hoping it will be a bit sharper for those close ups. The size doesn't bother me, I'd say my current lens is pretty heavy but I'm used to it now and the gig only goes for a few hours.. smaller and lighter would be nice but it wouldn't be a decider, I just want something that will give me something my current lens doesn't offer. So a longer focal length and sharper portraits.
Thanks so much for both of your advise, I might look into a second hand 77mm. It might be tough in Australia as there aren't as many pentax users around, but i'll keep my eyes open!
06-11-2012, 08:32 AM   #52
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Well, I shoot from up close most of the time too, but different people have different shooting preferences. Your "closeup" shot is still pretty wide by my standards. And of course, you can only get even that close to someone at the very front of the stage. But some people prefer more of the setting than I usually do. My most used concert lens is my M120/2.8; second is my DA70/2.4, and all my 50mm-and-under lenses combined probably don't add up to 20% of my concert shots. But I tend to go for pictures like this:



Anyhow, the point is, the reason to add a 70 or 77 would be for the extra length it provides. If you want the length, you need a need a new lens. If you don't want the length or don't consider it worth the expense, I'd say, don't bother just for the greater maximum aperture. For a lot less, you could get a 50 if there are times when you think the extra stop or two would make the difference and you are willing to pay for it in shallower DOF. The only reason to go with the 77 instead of a 50 would be for the focal length. And as soon as you acknowledge that, then the 70 could come into play as well, as could a 100, the 50-135, or other options.

As for sharpness, the sharpness of lens is almost *never* going to be the determining factor in sharpness for concert photography. Too many other variables involved. In particular, the need for high ISO robs you of sharpness, and of course, subject motion, which can only be partially compensated for by increasing shutter speed. A 77 will allow faster shutter speeds for a given ISO; that is what will help (somewhat) in sharpness, not the actual sharpness of the lens. But even so, it will remain a crap shoot. Lots of blurry images, with skill and luck, a few sharper ones.
06-11-2012, 08:18 PM   #53
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I've definitely improved on getting sharper photos as I've gotten more experienced.
I guess what I'm asking, despite the variables, there isn't a chance I could get a more pleasing portrait shot with a prime than with a zoom?

Concert photography isn't all I do, I like getting out and taking pictures of Animals and my friends, so I might look into the 77mm anyhow, I think it would be worth my while to have something with a longer focal length than what I already have and also something that can give me a shallower DOF.

Thanks for all your advise and expertise

06-11-2012, 08:32 PM   #54
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A Samyang 85mm f/1.4 could be a good option too if you dont mind MF.

I have a 70 & 77 and now generally prefer the 77 now that I've dialed in the AF fine adjust correctly
06-11-2012, 08:59 PM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
.

Personally I like the bokeh of the FA 77ltd far better, odd that they both got a '10' (or maybe the FA 77 should have gone to 11 )

DA 70 @ f/3.5

FA 77 @ f/3.5
Nice test but if you take dof+bokeh into consideration rather than the same exposure then for the da 70mm you will need to open up the aperture more to accommodate the same field of view.

Of course that said, I had both the da 70mm and the Fa 77, both are excellent lenses, just that I find the 77mm a bit too long for my taste and usage so I sold it after using for almost a year. No regrets so far.
06-11-2012, 09:06 PM   #56
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@paceyy
I have used the FA 77 for concerts and events before, wonderful lens but sometime I find it wanting especially in low light and reach. Perhaps a da* 50-135mm s more suited for you?

I know this may seem to clash with my statement above but they're for different type of photography, one is for street and portrait and the other I use for more sport and events.

Last edited by deanallan; 06-11-2012 at 09:09 PM. Reason: for further clarification
06-11-2012, 09:16 PM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by deanallan Quote
@paceyy
I have used the FA 77 for concerts and events before, wonderful lens but sometime I find it wanting especially in low light and reach. Perhaps a da* 50-135mm s more suited for you?
+1
Take a look at some of the concert work of Jim with 50-135 at Boxed Light - Photography by Jim Radcliffe
I have FA77 and love it. It may be a bit short for concert though....
Cheers!
06-12-2012, 04:42 AM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bestzoom Quote
+1
Take a look at some of the concert work of Jim with 50-135 at Boxed Light - Photography by Jim Radcliffe
I have FA77 and love it. It may be a bit short for concert though....
Cheers!
Thanks for the link, I'll take a look.
I actually use a 16-50mm at the moment and probably use the 30-50 range the most, I seem to be quite different to most by the sounds of it, but I like a bit of setting
That would probably be a very good lens for gigs I could imagine.. I guess I sort of got obsessed with buying a portrait lens, I am a big DOF fan..

There are way too many options, I feel no closer to choosing a lens :'D
06-12-2012, 12:16 PM   #59
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Nice comparative review...
I had both lenses - actually 2 FA77 and 1 DA70....somehow contrary to review i find DA70 bests both FA77 i had in terms of sharpness. FA77 has some other strenghts, though.
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