Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
04-04-2013, 03:41 PM   #1
Site Supporter




Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Berlin
Posts: 35
Which macro?

Focal length analysis shows I've been using my zooms almost as primes, so I'm replacing my D7000 with a K5II (halving size and weight in the process, yay!).

The DA15 Limited is more or less set, but the rest is more difficult.
I'd like a standard(-ist) lens, a moderate tele and a macro. What do you think makes more sense as a (yeah, I know, probably initial) three-lens setup:

1) DA15 Limited, DA35 Macro Limited, FA77 Limited
2) DA15 Limited, one of the many non-macro standard(-ish) lenses, DFA100 Macro WR (the next question would of course be: Which standard lens ... ?)

Or in other words: Which is the better macro lens and maybe more importantly: Which one is better for general use?
My thoughts so far:

Pro 1): Possibly lighter, definitely smaller set, I've tried the DFA100 briefly and it seemed to hunt a lot (though this was on a K5, might have gotten better), 100mm is a bit on the long side for my taste.
Pro 2): Bokeh is important to me, and from what I've seen I'm not convinced by the 35 in non-macro regions. The 100 seems glorious on that count. Option for a faster standard lens. WR.

04-04-2013, 04:33 PM   #2
Ric
Site Supporter
Ric's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 128
QuoteOriginally posted by lcts Quote
Focal length analysis shows I've been using my zooms almost as primes, so I'm replacing my D7000 with a K5II (halving size and weight in the process, yay!).

The DA15 Limited is more or less set, but the rest is more difficult.
I'd like a standard(-ist) lens, a moderate tele and a macro. What do you think makes more sense as a (yeah, I know, probably initial) three-lens setup:

1) DA15 Limited, DA35 Macro Limited, FA77 Limited
2) DA15 Limited, one of the many non-macro standard(-ish) lenses, DFA100 Macro WR (the next question would of course be: Which standard lens ... ?)

Or in other words: Which is the better macro lens and maybe more importantly: Which one is better for general use?
My thoughts so far:

Pro 1): Possibly lighter, definitely smaller set, I've tried the DFA100 briefly and it seemed to hunt a lot (though this was on a K5, might have gotten better), 100mm is a bit on the long side for my taste.
Pro 2): Bokeh is important to me, and from what I've seen I'm not convinced by the 35 in non-macro regions. The 100 seems glorious on that count. Option for a faster standard lens. WR.
I have the DFA 50mm 2.8 macro and like it a lot.
It is also quite good for general use as well. It is definately lighter.
04-04-2013, 04:36 PM   #3
hcc
Pentaxian
hcc's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,531
If you are after bokeh, you cannot go past the FA31mm and FA77mm. These lenses are legendary and very well regarded by many, incl. non Pentax people. See http://www.luminous-landscape.com/columns/sm-02-05-02.shtml.

For macro, the DFA100mm is well liked and the lens is WR, going well with the K-5ii (WR also). There are off course other options. See the post by PF member riorico: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/152336-cheap-macro-b...lose-work.html

The DA15mm is a great lens and you know it already.

Hope that the comment may help.

Last edited by hcc; 04-04-2013 at 04:41 PM.
04-04-2013, 04:58 PM   #4
Yos
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Stockholm
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 533
QuoteOriginally posted by hcc Quote
If you are after bokeh, you cannot go past the FA31mm and FA77mm. These lenses are legendary and very well regarded by many, incl. non Pentax people. See http://www.luminous-landscape.com/columns/sm-02-05-02.shtml.

For macro, the DFA100mm is well liked and the lens is WR, going well with the K-5ii (WR also). There are off course other options. See the post by PF member riorico: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/152336-cheap-macro-...lose-work.html

The DA15mm is a great lens and you know it already.

Hope that the comment may help.
+1 on that

Yep, If I had the money to switch to prime lenses I would do what hcc said.
With those 4 lenses you will be set a long time.
And you can always add a nice legacy 50mm lens of your choice later

04-04-2013, 05:40 PM   #5
Pentaxian




Join Date: Nov 2011
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,735
QuoteOriginally posted by lcts Quote
1) DA15 Limited, DA35 Macro Limited, FA77 Limited

I've found the DA 15/35/70 Ltd trio
to be a very compact and effective way
of covering the kind of range you're after,
namely wide to moderate tele, with macro.
04-05-2013, 04:37 PM   #6
Site Supporter




Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Berlin
Posts: 35
Original Poster
Thanks for your replies.

Hcc (and yos), my bank account saw your replies and preemptively committed suicide. But you're right, what I've seen of those lenses' bokeh makes me salivate. That and working distance for macro is my main concern about the 35 macro. Thanks for the link to the macro alternatives, 15+31+77+some version of macro adapter is a third way I hadn't thought about.

lytrytyr, I take it you've used the 35 macro? Does it hunt a lot outside of the macro range (as I said, seemed like the 100 does)?
04-05-2013, 04:57 PM   #7
Pentaxian
normhead's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Near Algonquin Park
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 25,812
A little shorter than the Pentax 100 Macro, and by far the best deal of the bunch is the Tamron 90 macro, which is an exemplary lens on every system it's been released on. With the Pentax 100 you get WR (water resistance) with the Tamron, you get just as good a lens for half the price. (You may not like how the build feels, but no one complains about the performance.)

After my wife started hogging the Tamron, I bought the Sigma 70 macro, also a great lens. Both the Tamron and Sigma 70 have limiters to keep hunting to a minimum.
04-05-2013, 05:12 PM   #8
Pentaxian
Miguel's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Near Seattle
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,726
Quality wise, all modern true macro lenses are very very good. They pretty much solved those design issues a long time ago. The question to you is how would you be using your macro lens? And are you talkin' about accurate macro (1:1) or vernacular macro a/k/a closeup?

Macro focal length should be well matched to your subject matter because there may be very inconvenient space requirements and limitations. The recommendations are quite subjective. I've owned about 8 different macro lenses over the decades at various focal lengths. Using a cropped sensor camera changes the equation some. The traditional 90-105mm worked great for film, but I find the equivalent FOV to be too long (though I do like the Sigma 180mm macro on APS-C) for what I shoot. Lately I prefer the 50-70mm range along with the Pentax 35mm macro. Pentax 50mm macro lenses are wonderful as is the Sigma 70mm f2.8.

M

04-06-2013, 12:50 AM   #9
Site Supporter




Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Berlin
Posts: 35
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Miguel Quote
The question to you is how would you be using your macro lens? And are you talkin' about accurate macro (1:1) or vernacular macro a/k/a closeup?
I'm interested mainly in texture, in the way that 2D-seeming surfaces become three-dimensional when viewed extremely up close (rusted metal, or leaves for example). For that close-up as in "real close focusing lens" won't cut it, I need life-size, but I'm not trying to be scientific about a 1:1 reproduction ratio.

I used to shoot macro on film (with a 105) and want to get back into it, but it's not my primary focus, which is why I was looking for "dual-purpose" glass. Apart from the "cheap macro" route, I guess I could also see if I can get a good deal on a used MF lens as a dedicated macro solution ...


About the Sigma/Tamron: Interestingly, the prices for them here aren't that different, at least not when buying new: About 400€ for the Tamron, 450 for the Sigma, 500 for the Pentax. Good options nonetheless, and 100€ is 100€ ...

[edited for clarity]

Last edited by lcts; 04-06-2013 at 02:00 AM.
04-06-2013, 07:07 PM - 1 Like   #10
Pentaxian




Join Date: Nov 2011
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,735
QuoteOriginally posted by lcts Quote
lytrytyr, I take it you've used the 35 macro? Does it hunt a lot outside of the macro range?
If you use it mindlessly,
it can, occasionally.

(Don't ever try to focus on a blank whiteboard!)

The trick is to help it manually
(ball-park pre-focusing using the QuickShift)
before you let the AF finish the job.
04-06-2013, 07:43 PM   #11
Site Supporter
K McCall's Avatar

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Dallas, TX
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 798
I have all the lenses you're considering (except the DA 15, but I practically have a body dedicated to my 12-24, so I understand the need for wide). I find myself consistently reaching for the 12-24, the D-FA 100, and the FA 43/1.9. With those three lenses, I feel like I'm ready for anything. The FA 31/1.8 is a BEAUTIFUL lens, but it's a little too wide for me when I already have a wide lens, so the 43 just seems to hit the sweet spot. The D-FA 100 does hunt, but I'm a fairly considerate shooter (I take a few seconds to compose the shot I want, take a step forward, a step back, etc.) so it doesn't bother me too much, and it's easy enough to switch to manual. The DA 35 Macro does take a while to focus as well, though I don't think as long as the D-FA 100 (although I have the non-WR version, so maybe the newer one is faster?). The DA 35 Macro is incredibly sharp, but I'm a sucker for bokeh, so I'll almost always opt for the easier bokeh combo of the D-FA 100 and the FA 43 (or 77, or 31).

Best of luck, and let us know what you choose!
04-07-2013, 09:32 AM   #12
Veteran Member
Schmidlapper's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Pennsylvania
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 532
QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
I've found the DA 15/35/70 Ltd trio
to be a very compact and effective way
of covering the kind of range you're after,
Ditto, and these too have a very nice OOF rendering or Bokeh. The 35 ltd macro is a great general purpose len, and the 70 is a wonderful portrait lens. I love using mine and have built a set of additional primes around this core trio.
04-07-2013, 11:54 AM   #13
Veteran Member
sterretje's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Roodepoort, South Africa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,534
The standardish lens would obviously be the FA31Ltd Add the DFA100WR for light tele and macro needs; you might be aware that with a longer macro you don't have to be as close to your subjects as with the 35mm to achieve 1:1

Above describes my primary combo (I'm not a wide-angle person); sometimes I find the gap between 31 mm and 100mm a bit big. Taking into account that you already will buy the DA15Ltd, you could consider the DA40Ltd instead of the FA31Ltd as the standard lens to make the gap a bit smaller.
04-09-2013, 02:15 PM   #14
Site Supporter




Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Berlin
Posts: 35
Original Poster
Thanks for all your help, I decided to go with the 15/43/100 Macro combo, for the longer working distance@macro and bokeh. Also, 43mm appeals to me and if I ever want a moderate wide angle, the 21 will fit right into this.

So I went looking around for for them used. Guess what? Over the weekend I found good deals for all three of them!
04-09-2013, 05:29 PM   #15
Pentaxian
Driline's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: IOWA Where the Tall Corn Grows
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,973
QuoteOriginally posted by lcts Quote
Thanks for all your help, I decided to go with the 15/43/100 Macro combo, for the longer working distance@macro and bokeh. Also, 43mm appeals to me and if I ever want a moderate wide angle, the 21 will fit right into this.

So I went looking around for for them used. Guess what? Over the weekend I found good deals for all three of them!
Let me know how the 43 15 combo works for you. I'm torn between the 15 & 21 to go with my FA43.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
da15, dfa100, k-mount, lens, macro, non-macro, pentax lens, slr lens, wr
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Which manual/auto macro lens? sharepointalex Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 31 11-21-2014 04:35 AM
Which Pentax 50mm/2.8 macro? loco Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10 10-10-2012 12:04 PM
Which 100mm macro lens? dazthebald Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 22 03-29-2012 12:08 PM
Which 100-105mm macro? civiletti Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 37 10-05-2011 06:25 PM
Which Macro?? Dionisis_K Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11 08-25-2011 01:18 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:13 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top