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05-15-2013, 03:01 AM   #1
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DA 35mm f2.4 AL vs M 50mm f1.7

I have a M 50mm f1.7 which was an absolute bargain at 7 ($10US) It is so sharp that it is my 'always on' lens, even though focussing is a bit difficult with the standard focussing screen.

When I use my other lenses now I'm always a bit disappointed that they are not as sharp as the ones taken with the 50mm. However, it's a little long on a cropped sensor so I was thinking of getting a 35mm DA instead, as this would allow me to use AF again, as well as being a little more of a 'natural' length.

I was wondering though how the lenses compare. Will I be disappointed with the 35mm after the 50mm in terms of image quality and sharpness? Would you recommend something else at 35mm instead? I don't mind manual focus too much, but AF would be nice - AF and focus shift would be ideal. I also don't mind buying secondhand - so any recommendations or advice would be much appreciated.

05-15-2013, 03:21 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Northern Soul Quote
I have a M 50mm f1.7 which was an absolute bargain at 7 ($10US) It is so sharp that it is my 'always on' lens, even though focussing is a bit difficult with the standard focussing screen.

When I use my other lenses now I'm always a bit disappointed that they are not as sharp as the ones taken with the 50mm. However, it's a little long on a cropped sensor so I was thinking of getting a 35mm DA instead, as this would allow me to use AF again, as well as being a little more of a 'natural' length.

I was wondering though how the lenses compare. Will I be disappointed with the 35mm after the 50mm in terms of image quality and sharpness? Would you recommend something else at 35mm instead? I don't mind manual focus too much, but AF would be nice - AF and focus shift would be ideal. I also don't mind buying secondhand - so any recommendations or advice would be much appreciated.
Are you intending to keep the M 50/1.7 and add the DA 35/2.4? If so, I say definitely do that. I had both of these lenses for a while and they had their different uses. At their more open apertures (in the 2's or 3's), I believe my 50 was sharper than the 35. You said focusing was a bit difficult with the stock screen so you might consider using the money to get a better focusing screen.

If you're going to replace, then that's a different issue. To get a good half-body or head+shoulders portrait image, you need to be perhaps uncomfortably close with a 35. IMO those sorts of shots are better taken with focal lengths >= 50.
05-15-2013, 04:22 AM   #3
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I have both.
You'll be happy with the sharpness of the DA35. It's wicked sharp at 4.5 or so with lots of DOF.
05-15-2013, 04:33 AM - 3 Likes   #4
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if you like how your photographs come out witht he optical compreension of the 50mm you wil surely be disapointed with a 35mm.

people always talk about the field fo view you get with a 35 (the same as 50mm on A FULL FRAME) but in my most humble opinion that's one thing that only people that take snapshots care about, it's not really about the field of view but the compression of the subjects, for instance.. with that 35mil f2.4 you could get mor fo your subject on the screen, but since the 35 mil is not a lens for portraits, due it's optical formula, your subject wouldn't look as good as it would with the 50mil

35 mil tend to bloat people.

so.. if you like the feeling, the sensitivity of your photographs on the 50mil and are thinking of buying the 35mil to get more in the picture and yet keep the feeling of the 50mil, im really sorry but that's not going to happend.

i feel for that as i bought a 35mm smc-m f2.8, it is my sharpest lens yet, but the things i photograph come out alot diferent than they would with a 50mm

ofr instance....



uggly at 35mm if u ask me

another 35(left) vs 50(right) mm

check out her nose, it's all over the place. no one like having a big nose.



This one, model at the same size (same field of view for your subject)
but see how diferent she looks..




i hope this was helpfull, happy clicks


Last edited by Akarak; 05-15-2013 at 04:41 AM.
05-15-2013, 04:44 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by johnyates Quote
I have both.
You'll be happy with the sharpness of the DA35. It's wicked sharp at 4.5 or so with lots of DOF.
Same for me ... I have both and think that you will be happy with the DA 35/2.4 ... J
05-16-2013, 05:11 AM   #6
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Get the 35 2.4! Everyone should have this lens. The IQ is excellent and the price is right. Shooting will be so much easier when you have a true "normal" for the APS-C sensor.
05-16-2013, 05:53 AM - 1 Like   #7
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I have a M 50mm f1.7 and DA 35mm f2.4. The M 50mm is sharper and noticeably brighter at max aperture. It also performs better wide open (the DA 35mm has some axial aberration wide open), and the M 50mm also has a smoother bokeh and more "retro" output. But the DA 35mm has fast AF, modern rendering, and its very light/compact. I love the DA 35mm, but if you start with a M 50mm f1.7, you might be disappointed with anything that isn't "limited." But even though I listed some cons to the 35mm, its not a bad lens, especially when you consider the price. Oh, and btw, the 40mm XS is also a good choice, its cheap, has AF, very very compact (record holder), and has optics basically identical to the 40mm limited. I would even say that the 40mm XS is sharper than the M 50mm and has that modern rendering, with nice circular bokeh (curved aperture blades). No quickshift, though.

QuoteOriginally posted by Akarak Quote
people always talk about the field of view you get with a 35 (the same as 50mm on A FULL FRAME) but in my most humble opinion that's one thing that only people that take snapshots care about, it's not really about the field of view but the compression of the subjects, for instance.. with that 35mil f2.4 you could get mor fo your subject on the screen, but since the 35 mil is not a lens for portraits, due it's optical formula, your subject wouldn't look as good as it would with the 50mil 35 mil tend to bloat people.
Very good point! People talk about "equivalent FoV" and "equivalent DoF" way too much, there are other more important lens characteristics.

Last edited by Na Horuk; 05-16-2013 at 06:11 AM.
05-16-2013, 07:06 AM - 1 Like   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Akarak Quote
if you like how your photographs come out witht he optical compreension of the 50mm you wil surely be disapointed with a 35mm.

people always talk about the field fo view you get with a 35 (the same as 50mm on A FULL FRAME) but in my most humble opinion that's one thing that only people that take snapshots care about, it's not really about the field of view but the compression of the subjects, for instance.. with that 35mil f2.4 you could get mor fo your subject on the screen, but since the 35 mil is not a lens for portraits, due it's optical formula, your subject wouldn't look as good as it would with the 50mil

35 mil tend to bloat people.

so.. if you like the feeling, the sensitivity of your photographs on the 50mil and are thinking of buying the 35mil to get more in the picture and yet keep the feeling of the 50mil, im really sorry but that's not going to happend.

i feel for that as i bought a 35mm smc-m f2.8, it is my sharpest lens yet, but the things i photograph come out alot diferent than they would with a 50mm

ofr instance....



uggly at 35mm if u ask me

another 35(left) vs 50(right) mm

check out her nose, it's all over the place. no one like having a big nose.



This one, model at the same size (same field of view for your subject)
but see how diferent she looks..




i hope this was helpfull, happy clicks

Oh my GOD!! And i thought i was the ONLY one in this whole wide world, in the age of digital photography (APSC), that understood this totally! -_-".. It was VERY frustrating when trying to explain this to people why i feel the need for FF, mainly due to compression factor!

Kept getting rebutted, "It doesn't change... It's just a crop.." or "it's not too different, just move your feet.."
Like, what in the world are they talking about? Best thing? I get this often from shooters of the yesteryears; film shooters (FF).

Guess after 2 years of shooting, i found another sane person! The VERY reason why the ~50mm FL has always been labeled as the "normal" lens; because perspective/compression is almost equivalent to what one's eye sees and NOT just FoV!
No ~50mm equivalent in the world, in any format smaller than 35mm FF can replace what you see exactly at that point in time.. It is exactly being able to shoot with both eyes open..

QuoteOriginally posted by Leopardwizard Quote
Get the 35 2.4! Everyone should have this lens. The IQ is excellent and the price is right. Shooting will be so much easier when you have a true "normal" for the APS-C sensor.
Hmm... I really think it's not right to label this 35mm or any other 35mm in the world as a "normal" lens. Read the explanation above again...

Anyway, to TS, just get it... I bet you'll use the 35mm more..

05-16-2013, 08:12 AM - 2 Likes   #9
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For a moment i honestly thought i would get bashed or something, thank you for sharing your understanding and also support.


Just another visual comparsion of the same field of view under diferent focal lenghts, so everyone can compare how it changes your subject, and for the most caring eye, dramaticly.

http://annawu.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/focal-length-comparison.jpg

Last edited by Akarak; 05-16-2013 at 08:14 AM. Reason: can't get the image to show
05-16-2013, 08:36 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Akarak Quote
For a moment i honestly thought i would get bashed or something, thank you for sharing your understanding and also support.


Just another visual comparsion of the same field of view under diferent focal lenghts, so everyone can compare how it changes your subject, and for the most caring eye, dramaticly.

http://annawu.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/focal-length-comparison.jpg
Yep! And that's one main reason i'd love a FF.. More flexibility in perspective control; watch how the background "size" changes in relation to the foreground in different FL. A 35mm lens will cause the foreground to be larger than the background. A ~50mm equivalent FoV is different from ~50mm true "normal" perspective, period..

Again, to prevent OT-ing, to TS, we don't have much of a choice, just grab the 35mm due to a wider FoV, therefore a tad more useable in general.
05-16-2013, 10:22 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Akarak Quote
but in my most humble opinion that's one thing that only people that take snapshots care about
Huh?

What do "snapshots" have to do with anything*? It is all about perspective and perspective is driven by the position of the lens relative to the subject. The wider FOV of the 35mm allows you to frame a larger subject for a given shooting distance (i.e. perspective). If you want to flatten the perspective, increase the working distance and crop.

In addition, optical design (with the possible exception of "soft" spec'ed lenses) has nothing to do with suitability for portrature. I own a couple of classic portrait lenses, but have found that a traditional fast 50 on APS-C works well.


Steve

* Traditionally, the focal length for snapshot cameras has been on the wide side...say 35mm for 35mm film...
05-16-2013, 05:11 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Akarak Quote
if you like how your photographs come out witht he optical compreension of the 50mm you wil surely be disapointed with a 35mm.

people always talk about the field fo view you get with a 35 (the same as 50mm on A FULL FRAME) but in my most humble opinion that's one thing that only people that take snapshots care about, it's not really about the field of view but the compression of the subjects, for instance.. with that 35mil f2.4 you could get mor fo your subject on the screen, but since the 35 mil is not a lens for portraits, due it's optical formula, your subject wouldn't look as good as it would with the 50mil

35 mil tend to bloat people.

so.. if you like the feeling, the sensitivity of your photographs on the 50mil and are thinking of buying the 35mil to get more in the picture and yet keep the feeling of the 50mil, im really sorry but that's not going to happend.

i feel for that as i bought a 35mm smc-m f2.8, it is my sharpest lens yet, but the things i photograph come out alot diferent than they would with a 50mm

ofr instance....



uggly at 35mm if u ask me

another 35(left) vs 50(right) mm

check out her nose, it's all over the place. no one like having a big nose.



This one, model at the same size (same field of view for your subject)
but see how diferent she looks..




i hope this was helpfull, happy clicks
Yes, that's a good demonstration, but not of your argument. The effect on her face is the consequence of your changing position, and nothing to do with any magical qualities of a 50mm lens.
05-16-2013, 06:21 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Huh?

What do "snapshots" have to do with anything*? It is all about perspective and perspective is driven by the position of the lens relative to the subject. The wider FOV of the 35mm allows you to frame a larger subject for a given shooting distance (i.e. perspective). If you want to flatten the perspective, increase the working distance and crop.
Hey there Steve, I agree with the other points you'd stated, but for this point, only partially.

Because it is the most oft-used rebuttal i get when trying to justify why i "need" a FF.

Increasing the working distance, to crop, kind of negates the point then of purchasing and using a fast lens, right? (the further the hyperfocal distance and the wider the aperture is, the softer an image gets due to the thinning DoF, right?)

PS: Another interesting discussion for another thread i think.
05-16-2013, 06:28 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by timo Quote
Yes, that's a good demonstration, but not of your argument. The effect on her face is the consequence of your changing position, and nothing to do with any magical qualities of a 50mm lens.
Tim, i'm not sure if you notice, but if you look at his post #4 where he compares 2 pictures of a model(subject) between 24mm and 160mm.

Observe the background in relation to the subject; look at them fences. Don't using a longer focal length "stretch"/iincrease the background size in comparison to the subject?

Perhaps this is what he is meaning to say?

Edit: Ok, looking at the composition, it seems changed.. But i think you get what i mean anyway.. LoL!
05-16-2013, 07:25 PM   #15
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I haven't read all replies, but have the 35AL, the 40DA, and the 50, in my case the 1.4, and I have the 55/1.8.
40 and 55 are quite similar: supersharp with one stop, supercolours, and a very nice bokeh........
I had the 50/1.7, but ssold it when I got the 1.4, which obviously has an even sharper bokeh, but all in all the 50's are not that convinving as it comes to colours, compared to the 55. Same counts for the 35, which is optically just a little bit behind on the 50. BUT: be aware: both are great lenses, that can not be compared with any zoomlens! The 35 hardly leaves my K5, just a pity she isn't WR!
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