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07-29-2012, 07:01 AM   #1
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Pentax DA 35mm f2.4 vs Pentax 35mm 2.8 macro

I'm in the market for a 35mm lens and have been going back and forth between buying the 35 f2.4 or the 35 f2.8 macro. I know there is a big difference in price and while that is a concern it is not my primary. I can afford the f2.8. My concern is the quality of the pictures. Is there a big difference between the pictures that are taken with the lenses. I know the limited is a better build that the f2.4 but both have gotten good user reviews on this site. I would mainly be using the lens as a walk around/portrait lens. I am not too interested in the macro capabilities since I already have a DA 100mm. What concerns me most about the f2.4 is that it says it is for beginners and I consider myself past that stage so I want the best 35mm there is but don't want to break the bank unless I have too. So if you had the choice, which would you get?


Last edited by smack1019; 07-29-2012 at 07:32 AM.
07-29-2012, 07:12 AM   #2
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There is absolutely nothing wrong with the 2.4; it is an excellent lens. My second favourite of the ones I have, by a good margin. Don't worry about the naysayers complaining about the plastic mount, or claiming it's a newbie/beginner lens. The optics are superb. If you don't need the close focusing of the macro, save yourself a few hundred bucks and get the 2.4.
07-29-2012, 07:32 AM   #3
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Yesterday I got my new DA 35mm f2.4 and 49mm len hood for my birthday. 2.4 is awesome pictures!! I like it so much! Smile
07-29-2012, 07:35 AM - 1 Like   #4
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I have never tried the 35 macro and I know it has a huge following (best lens ever and all that). But the 35/2.4 is amazing value. Every time I use it I'm surprised by how sharp and contrasty and just plain good it really is. I know the macro is a better lens, but I really have no interest in it because I feel I have that FL covered with the "plastic fantastic".

07-29-2012, 07:35 AM   #5
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Do you frequently use quick shift or a distance scale? These two bells-and-whistles are a distinction between the two lenses.

(FWIW, I have a 35mm f2.4 on the way right now. )
07-29-2012, 07:45 AM   #6
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In my mind, the reason to choose the macro over the 2.4 would be for the macro... I am not a beginner and just recently purchased the 2.4 about a month ago and for the price am very happy with it. That's why I bought it - it's a lot of bang for buck, for a new lens. The only thing I can say is that it's doesn't have a distance scale and that is a nice feature for manual focusing, so if you prefer manual focus, that might be a factor.

Last edited by todd; 07-29-2012 at 07:54 AM.
07-29-2012, 07:46 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by loco Quote
"plastic fantastic"
hahaha, I love it... I've not heard this before. It certainly is just this. I had some reservations before I got it, but once I did, they all went right out the window. Some people really do absolutely hate on this lens because of the plastic mount, but I think it's out of spite and not for any real reasons. It fits tight on my camera and it works well. Beautiful pictures.

Could there be a concern if I drop the camera and the lens hits first, breaking the mount? Maybe, but, then, I don't intend to do that... Might also be able to consider it a safety feature for the camera... cars have crumple zones, consider the mount a crumple zone for your camera .

In all seriousness, the DA AL 35 F2.4 is nothing to sniff at unless you're A) REALLY needing quickshift, B) really needing a distance scale, or C) have an irrational fear of plastic.
07-29-2012, 08:04 AM   #8
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I have the 35 mm f2.8 macro, so I'm not in the market to replace it with the 35 mm f2.4. However, I note you already have macro covered with the DA 100, so you probably don't need to pay the premium for the macro capabilities. I believe the 2.4 is much smaller and lighter and if I didn't already have the 35 macro I wouldn't hesitate to buy it to cover that focal length. I wouldn't be put off by the "beginner" label or the plastic mount. I have the new 50 mm f1.8 and at 4.3 oz it is a treat to carry on the camera and produces superb images. All the reviews support the same for the 35 mm f2.4.

07-29-2012, 08:33 AM   #9
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There are other threads on this topic but the bottom line is that there are a lot of misconceptions out there and pure prejudice about the 35/2.4.

Modern plastics are amazing and often are better for many applications than is equivalent metal. One person even offered that the mounts break more often, no evidence to support that just a bold assertion. Another offered that the plastic mounts resell for a lower % of their initial price. False. The 35/2.4 sells for only 10-20 dollars less used than the real street price new.

Bottom line - its an amazingly sharp little lens for very little money. If you need Macro or MUST have the quick shift then the much more expensive 35 Macro is your lens.
07-29-2012, 09:02 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Danny Delcambre Quote
Yesterday I got my new DA 35mm f2.4 and 49mm len hood for my birthday. 2.4 is awesome pictures!! I like it so much! Smile
Which 49mm lens hood did you get?
- Sheldon
07-29-2012, 10:09 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by sheld Quote
Which 49mm lens hood did you get?
- Sheldon
Seperate order at Amazon.com. 49mm shaped wide-angel len hood for about $9.00. It fit my DA 35mm f2.4. It looks cool!
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000H2EE62/ref=redir_mdp_mobile/179-3355589-7869358
07-29-2012, 10:19 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
One person even offered that the mounts break more often, no evidence to support that just a bold assertion.
If that was the impression my post gave, that wasn't the intent. I make no assertion of the sort. I sense that mount is quite sturdy. I know that is the belief some have though, and wanted to provide a counterpoint/benefit to it even if it were the case. I should try to be clearer in my posts
07-29-2012, 10:49 AM   #13
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I bought my DA 35 Macro Limited long before the DA 35/2.4 appeared,
so the choice I faced was between the Limited and the FA 35/2.
Although the FA 35/2 was technically sharper,
the rendering of the Limited was the deciding factor in my choice.
That rendering, slightly "ominous," is not to everybody's taste,
but for me it is one of the most distinctive features of the lens,
quite apart from the macro, the Quick-Shift, and the other advantages.
07-29-2012, 03:49 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by pezmaker Quote
If that was the impression my post gave, that wasn't the intent. I make no assertion of the sort. I sense that mount is quite sturdy. I know that is the belief some have though, and wanted to provide a counterpoint/benefit to it even if it were the case. I should try to be clearer in my posts
No, it wasn't you and the person I referred to did not imply it but said it outright.
07-29-2012, 05:00 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
I bought my DA 35 Macro Limited long before the DA 35/2.4 appeared,
so the choice I faced was between the Limited and the FA 35/2.
Although the FA 35/2 was technically sharper,
the rendering of the Limited was the deciding factor in my choice.
That rendering, slightly "ominous," is not to everybody's taste,
but for me it is one of the most distinctive features of the lens,
quite apart from the macro, the Quick-Shift, and the other advantages.
Now I kind of want a lens that renders "ominous".

The macro lens has a longer focus travel, so AF might take longer under some conditions. And it has 9 aperture blades vs. 6, so you could get cool 18 point stars on bright highlights.
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