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11-27-2012, 03:04 PM   #1
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Photozone Conspiracy

How accurate are Photozone lens reviews?


ex. Pentax SMC FA 43mm f/1.9 Limited - Lab Test / Review - Analysis

They also gave the Canon kit lens 3 stars and I know from use that it is not the good.

11-27-2012, 03:21 PM   #2
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Just remember there is the real world and then there is 'the Photozone.' LOL. I appreciate the work that goes into testing, etc. But, I know what I see when I use the 43 limited. There is no doubt that the 43 and the 77 were optimized for portrait work and corrections were left out of the design to optimize field performance at the sacrifice of bench testing. The photos speak for themselves.
11-27-2012, 03:22 PM   #3
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Photozone is one data source. If you only go with one datapoint in making any decision the results are your own fault.
11-27-2012, 03:33 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Photozone is one data source. If you only go with one datapoint in making any decision the results are your own fault.
No, no, no. One datapoint is more than enough.



Photozone is kind of lame though...I don't think they blow the lenses up when they are done.

11-27-2012, 03:42 PM   #5
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I actually think that Klaus, tries to create objective, logical reviews. I find it a useful resource (but certainly not the only one - quite like LensTip: LensTip.com - lens review, lenses reviews, lens specification - Lenstip.com and there are quite a few other sites review Pentax lenses). Their measurements seem to match with the few lenses I have - but I'm talking measurements.
When you look at a "technical" review, I think you need to keep in mind what you really want out of a lens. What aspects are important to you (which are often different to the reviewers final assessment factors).

The other point is that there is sample variation between lenses that are tested here and there. Unfortunately it would appear that Pentax lenses do vary quite a bit - and I'm not saying this is unique to Pentax because there are problems with other manufacturers too.
11-27-2012, 04:05 PM   #6
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Even the FA 43 devotees say that it has some sort of undefinable magic. Can magic be tested?

Let's run Bob Dylan's singing through a voice measurement device to see how high he ranks next to Boy George.

Photozone is a great resource.

Brian

Last edited by close-enough; 11-27-2012 at 04:12 PM. Reason: grammar
11-27-2012, 04:27 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by kiwi_jono Quote
I actually think that Klaus, tries to create objective, logical reviews. I find it a useful resource (but certainly not the only one - quite like LensTip: LensTip.com - lens review, lenses reviews, lens specification - Lenstip.com and there are quite a few other sites review Pentax lenses). Their measurements seem to match with the few lenses I have - but I'm talking measurements.
When you look at a "technical" review, I think you need to keep in mind what you really want out of a lens. What aspects are important to you (which are often different to the reviewers final assessment factors).

The other point is that there is sample variation between lenses that are tested here and there. Unfortunately it would appear that Pentax lenses do vary quite a bit - and I'm not saying this is unique to Pentax because there are problems with other manufacturers too.
I agree. He does try and often he brings up issues that need to be discussed. But, he is only one voice and one testing procedure. I like LensTip.Com too, particularly that they looked at UV and CPL filters pretty well. As for sample variations, there have been posts recently that seem to indicate that the rate of such variations may have gone up in recent years for Pentax......
11-28-2012, 01:20 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
As for sample variations, there have been posts recently that seem to indicate that the rate of such variations may have gone up in recent years for Pentax......
Urban Legend...


Steve

11-28-2012, 01:37 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Urban Legend...


Steve
Moving from one country to another for assembly never causes an increase in variation.
11-28-2012, 01:46 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
Moving from one country to another for assembly never causes an increase in variation.
I am sure the work force in Japan was very happy assembling FA 43 LTD just prior to being laid off so the operations could be moved to Vietnam.
11-28-2012, 01:55 PM   #11
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The problem I have with these review sites is that they test the MTF in the mid range,
but that doesn't tell you what happens at infinity, or really close up (for macro lenses).

The sample photos at infinity don't help if it happened to be a dismal day when they had the lens available.
Unfortunately, both Munich (Photozone) and Warsaw (Optyczne/Lenstip) have a lot of dismal days.


Edit: The link from the words "s a m p l e _ p h o t o s" above
is an automatic one inserted by this site. Please disregard.

Last edited by lytrytyr; 11-28-2012 at 02:02 PM.
11-28-2012, 02:19 PM   #12
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Photozone is a tool that is meant to help you make a decision. Klaus is very honest about WHAT he tests, HOW he tests it. It's as good as it gets. The numbers serve as a basis for comparison, but of course they don't tell the whole story.

He does also describe each lens toroughly, almost always giving Pentax bonus points for manufacturing, build quality, etc.

Read a few reviews to know the basics of the lens you are considering (and read more than one review), then look at sample pictures to decide if the lens delivers the look you're after.
11-28-2012, 02:29 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
Klaus is very honest about WHAT he tests, HOW he tests it. It's as good as it gets.
Unless I'm missing something, or Klaus specifically states so,
it's not always clear to me whether the border MTF readings
are taken at the same focus setting as the center or not.

In terms of information, DxO may be as good as it gets.
Unfortunately, it's a real hassle
to locate and extract that information.
11-28-2012, 02:33 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blue Quote
I am sure the work force in Japan was very happy assembling FA 43 LTD just prior to being laid off so the operations could be moved to Vietnam.
If they were told.......
11-28-2012, 02:34 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by photoman1 Quote
How accurate are Photozone lens reviews?


ex. Pentax SMC FA 43mm f/1.9 Limited - Lab Test / Review - Analysis

They also gave the Canon kit lens 3 stars and I know from use that it is not the good.
To answer your question. The photozone tests are among the best and most complete you can find online (and for free). You need to able to understand and compare results and figure out how to judge the results- that's to you. A lens is not only rated with stars there are diagrams and words to the tests to explain results. A lens has to perform really badly to get less than two stars at photozone. Three star results require some interpretation and sometimes it is not easy to separate a lower from an upper three star rating.
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