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06-28-2013, 11:28 AM   #1
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40mm f2.8 limited vs 43mm f1.9 limited

Looking these reviews the Pentax 40mm limited is the winner for KO (Image quality)

Pentax SMC DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited - Review / Lab Test - Analysis

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


what do you think?

06-28-2013, 11:37 AM   #2
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I'm a big fan of the speed, handling and overall rendition of the FA 43.

But I do like the size of the DA 40.
06-28-2013, 11:40 AM - 2 Likes   #3
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Mmh, I think that Photozone test is infamous, some claim that they had a bad copy of the FA 43mm.
Keep in mind that the lens is more than just output resolution and aperture speed (though these are still important)
The DA 40mm has fast AF, is very sharp, very compact, has Quickshift, and a modern type of rendering (low distortion, jagged bokeh, sharp colours)
The FA 43mm is more of a film lens, has aperture ring and longer focus throw for easier MF. No QS. Its still sharp, but it renders great for portraits (skin tones and contrasts, smooth bokeh), has very nice star bursts (for night time photography). Its a legendary Pentax lens: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/columns/sm-02-05-02.shtml
So they are very different lenses, even if they have similar focal lengths. Get DA if you want fast, modern, razor sharp. Get FA if you want more.. old fashioned glamor

Last edited by Na Horuk; 06-28-2013 at 11:52 AM.
06-28-2013, 11:45 AM   #4
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I think the FA 43 is sharper in the center and has a stop more light gathering ability. I actually prefer the 31 -- 55 -- 77 grouping to the 31 -- 43 -- 77 that would be present if all you own is the FA limiteds.

06-28-2013, 11:50 AM   #5
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I owned the FA 43mm and sold it to switch over to more DA* lenses for the weather sealing. I found it difficult to shoot with, but when I got it right - damn, it was amazing. I found it to be a more artistic lens than some of my other lenses. Or at least I was more inclined to think artistically when I used it.

I sort of disagree with the comments about the DA 40mm being unjustifiable as it covers a normal length, without the added speed of 1.4 or 1.8... Most of those fast normal lenses aren't as sharp across the frame at max aperture and people end up stopping down to 2.8 or 4 anyways. Also, I think it depends a bit on purpose. The DA 40mm's size is really unparalleled from any manufacturer.

Plus, you can pick up a used one from anywhere between high $200s and high $300s. KEH has one now for $275 - which is a steal! I want to buy it but my wife would certainly notice since it is much smaller than any other lens I own!
06-28-2013, 11:52 AM   #6
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I suggest the DA40 for landscape, due to more even resolution across the frame. The FA43 would be better for narrow DOF bokeh.
06-28-2013, 11:54 AM   #7
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And I just wanted to mention - the 43mm without the lens hood is really a very shallow lens.
06-28-2013, 01:28 PM   #8
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I spent a lot of time deciding between the DA 40 and FA 43 before I purchased one. After weeks of poring over this forum and tons of questions I chose the FA 43. I am not disappointed. If you have the extra cash go for it, if not the DA 40 makes a nice runner up. If you have to have one nice go to lens in your arsenal, this is it. The price I paid was $584 brand new from Adorama. The least expensive of the FA's. I'm sure its more than that now, but you should be able to pick up a used copy in the 4 to $500 range.

06-28-2013, 02:05 PM   #9
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I am lucky enough to currently own both at the same time. I assumed I'd sell the DA 40 when I acquired the FA 43 but actually, I kept both because I love both for different reasons; Na Horuk summed up the differences quite well, and I kept both lenses because of those different benefits. The DA 40 is so slim and fast focusing, and the images just pop! The FA43 is great in low light and has beautiful bokeh for portrait shots. Someday I may give up my DA 40 but for now, both find a home in my camera bag--> in particular, I find the DA 40 + K-01 to be an awesome combination!
06-28-2013, 02:25 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by seventysixersfan Quote
I am lucky enough to currently own both at the same time. I assumed I'd sell the DA 40 when I acquired the FA 43 but actually, I kept both because I love both for different reasons; Na Horuk summed up the differences quite well, and I kept both lenses because of those different benefits. The DA 40 is so slim and fast focusing, and the images just pop! The FA43 is great in low light and has beautiful bokeh for portrait shots. Someday I may give up my DA 40 but for now, both find a home in my camera bag--> in particular, I find the DA 40 + K-01 to be an awesome combination!
Definitely like the DA 40 combined with the K-01. Tiny, with great image quality.
06-29-2013, 01:23 AM   #11
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I have the 35mm f2.8 limited macro and F-50mm f/1.4

Between them I am looking place for these 40mm ltd or 43mm ltd
06-29-2013, 01:36 AM - 2 Likes   #12
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I had both for quite a while, but just recently sold the DA40.
The DA40 is a very competent tradesman: it never did a bad job. The FA43 is a virtuoso artist: temperamental, but capable of genuine magic.
06-29-2013, 02:10 AM   #13
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Obviously 43mm limited is faster than 40mm but From f/2.8 to f/4, f/5,6 f/8 and down, Is there any appreciable difference between them (quality of image)?

what would you choose between 35mm ltd and F-50mm f1.4?

Last edited by pentaz; 06-29-2013 at 03:58 AM.
06-29-2013, 02:33 AM   #14
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I would choose to walk...

If you are unsure, just grab the 43.. Then if you're not "happy" with it, trade it in for a 40 with cash to spare..
06-29-2013, 04:36 AM   #15
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A few years ago I rented the FA 43 and after trying it decided to buy a limited lens. I decided to buy the DA 40 in order to save a couple hundred dollars.

I have no regrets about that decision. At all.
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