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03-05-2008, 11:14 PM   #1
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1.4 aperture

I always read about the FA50's reputed poor performance wide open, but I must admit to using
1.4 aperture quite a lot. I find its reasonably sharp in the centre, and can prodce really good results where the composition allows.

i'd like to know how often you guys use 1.4 or 1.2 - is it only as a last resort in low light, or do you use it for effect?

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03-05-2008, 11:38 PM   #2
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Sign me in for another wide open guy, lol. I shot most of my pictures at wide open (from macro to landscape). I only stop down when the composition calls for it or when the lighting is kinda harsh. To be honest, for landscape shot, I find that only tilt function would really extend the depth of field; stopping down to f/11 or f/22 would hardly solve the problem, especially when it would degrade the quality quite a lot. Portrait shot is just lovely with this razor thin DOF, good for isolation, and soften the features.
03-06-2008, 01:17 AM   #3
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I have shown here that the lens is not soft at f1.4:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/21641-alleged-...-4-lenses.html

The main problem is that the DoF is only some mm at f1.4 and it is very difficult to focus this accurately by hand. If your body moves slightly, the focus is off already.
I use continuous shooting and take several images, so that I can choose the one with spot-on sharpness (hopefully).

Great shot, btw!
03-06-2008, 01:30 AM   #4
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I love to use aperture wide open too. It is always fun with bokeh all around.

03-06-2008, 01:57 AM   #5
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When I'm using the A50/1.2 lens, I always use it at wide open aperture. That's why I paid for such a premium price for it
03-06-2008, 02:28 AM   #6
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I shot wide open only (f1.8) for a long time, and got tired of it. Outdoors, I go for whatever is creatively correct. f8 when it doesn't really matter. Indoors, I like to keep my 28/1.8 and 50/1.4 at f2.8 for a little bit of DoF lattitude. I'll more readily go to f2 than ISO800+, though.
03-06-2008, 02:36 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by frank Quote
When I'm using the A50/1.2 lens, I always use it at wide open aperture. That's why I paid for such a premium price for it
I nearly nabbed a 1.2 on fleabay once, and was kicking myself over being outbid at the last moment by a couple of dollars. (Doesn't matter really, since I must have about half a dozen old lenses in the 50-55mm range)

What's your strike rate with focussing at 1.2?! I'm guessing you've invested in a katzeye - its something I've been considering for use with an 85mm f1.9 - man, I'm afraid to go anywhere near F1.9 with that thing - the DOF is ridiculously thin. Even at f2.8, my strike rate would probably be 50%
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03-06-2008, 05:52 AM   #8
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I use it mostly wide open. wanted 1.4 for low light not out in the blazing sun.

my only complaint? is that without a split image screne, in a club environment where it is dark, it is sometimes difficult to focus accurately, and when you are close enough to use a 50mm, DOF, as others have stated is incredibly narrow.

That's not the fault of the lens, it is just the reality of optics

03-06-2008, 06:39 AM   #9
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I also like fast apertures, but I run into the ISO 200 and 1/4000s ceiling pretty often. On a bright day, F2.8 is usually about the max.
03-06-2008, 08:16 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by beekala Quote
I nearly nabbed a 1.2 on fleabay once, and was kicking myself over being outbid at the last moment by a couple of dollars. (Doesn't matter really, since I must have about half a dozen old lenses in the 50-55mm range)

What's your strike rate with focussing at 1.2?! I'm guessing you've invested in a katzeye - its something I've been considering for use with an 85mm f1.9 - man, I'm afraid to go anywhere near F1.9 with that thing - the DOF is ridiculously thin. Even at f2.8, my strike rate would probably be 50%
Well, it's pretty hard to get a spot shot w/ paper thin DOF when using the lens wide open for close target. But I did manage to get some spot on ones. No, I didn't try katzeye but only the bundled viewfinder plus an O-ME53 viewfinder magnifier. Here are some of the good ones by A50/1.2, all wide open of course:









03-06-2008, 08:34 PM   #11
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I bought the FA50 for it's wide aperture so that I can catch some shots with a super-small depth of field and love it. I have seen slight softness at f1.4, but that's when I'm really, really pixel-peeping. otherwise, it looks great.
03-06-2008, 10:09 PM   #12
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A50 1.2 is ridiculously hard to nail focus wide open. I have much better success with M50 1.4 for some reason. I shoot these wide open all the time, but I have to admit to stopping down to f2 when I feel frustration setting in.

QuoteOriginally posted by frank Quote
Well, it's pretty hard to get a spot shot w/ paper thin DOF when using the lens wide open for close target. But I did manage to get some spot on ones. No, I didn't try katzeye but only the bundled viewfinder plus an O-ME53 viewfinder magnifier. Here are some of the good ones by A50/1.2, all wide open of course:
Those are nice shots!
03-06-2008, 10:32 PM   #13
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Those are nice shots![/QUOTE]

you can say that again ....fantastic use of DOF, and the in-focus areas are still sharp
03-06-2008, 11:29 PM   #14
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Narrow DOF = more precise focusing needed

I find this is where an AF lens really outshine their manual focus counterparts. Having had an A 50mm f/1.7, an A 50mm f/2 and two FA 50mm f/1.4, I find shooting is way quicker and more accurate with the FA.

As an aside, a doctor friend who's an eye specialist told me the light transmission and visual acuity of someone in their mid-40s can be as much as 30% less than a person at 20. We don't notice it because our eyes compensate but to me that's an incentive to let go of my manual focus lenses in favor of AF. I think my eyes need the break.


FA 50mm f/1.4
03-06-2008, 11:46 PM   #15
raz
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fa 50 1.4, find it pretty sharp on center but hard to get the focus right if the subject moves
here is the original, no post process
http://raz.ro/pentax/50/imgp5461.jpg
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