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07-01-2013, 04:01 AM   #1
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Pentax 21mm f/3.2 limited vs FA 20mm f/2.8

What about these lens?

Pentax DA-21mm f/3.2 limited
Pentax FA-20mm f/2.8

I have read some reviews and they give the 21mm Limited as winner in almost all.

What do you think?

07-01-2013, 05:21 AM   #2
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It's a Limited lens with modern coatings, design, and manufacturing techniques. Those carry advantages.
07-01-2013, 08:29 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
It's a Limited lens with modern coatings, design, and manufacturing techniques. Those carry advantages.
I know talking bad about legacy K-mount glass is very taboo amongst Pentaxians, but man, I have a hard time warming up to pre-digital lenses for use on digital cameras. The CA can be so brutal.

Edit:
Just to make it clear, i am not bashing the lenses themselves, they were designed to a completely different set of requirements, and for film they are top notch...and for digital they can be great too. But you just have to be so much more careful not to incite purplefringing that most of the time, I dont think it's worth it.

Last edited by cali92rs; 07-01-2013 at 08:35 AM.
07-01-2013, 10:09 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by cali92rs Quote
I know talking bad about legacy K-mount glass is very taboo amongst Pentaxians, but man, I have a hard time warming up to pre-digital lenses for use on digital cameras. The CA can be so brutal.

Edit:
Just to make it clear, i am not bashing the lenses themselves, they were designed to a completely different set of requirements, and for film they are top notch...and for digital they can be great too. But you just have to be so much more careful not to incite purplefringing that most of the time, I dont think it's worth it.
It's not taboo. Some pre-digital k-mounts do very well with controllable CA in post, others not so well.

Flare is definitely better controlled now, and some lenses are much sharper wide open in their DA Limited arrangements.

I find the bokeh on my FA 50/1.4 to be awesome on film, but can be chunky or wooly on digital. So far in my use of the DA Limited they have a smoother OOF rendering than their film era cousins.

Of course, it's the aesthetic that's subjective.


Last edited by Aristophanes; 07-01-2013 at 12:16 PM.
07-01-2013, 10:23 AM   #5
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FWIW, I had them both and traded off the 21mm. It's a lovely little lens but maybe, at my age, I'm a bit legacy too. I like the feel of the 20mm and the slightly larger aperture. But that's probably a bit subjective on my part.
07-01-2013, 10:36 AM   #6
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I think the big things in favor of the DA limited would be better flare resistance and less purple fringing. The FA has the benefit of being full frame compatible if you are interested in that down the road.
07-01-2013, 10:49 AM   #7
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Is the sharpness similar in both lens?
07-01-2013, 12:08 PM   #8
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Last edited by beholder3; 08-11-2013 at 07:42 AM. Reason: [deleted]
07-01-2013, 12:37 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaz Quote
I have read some reviews and they give the 21mm Limited as winner in almost all.
Don't read reviews. Look at people's pictures. Then get the DA21.

Last edited by kh1234567890; 07-01-2013 at 12:50 PM.
07-01-2013, 04:24 PM   #10
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f/2.8 and f/3.2 are 1/4 stop apart (or a third, fits both scales). Practically, the difference is null. At the "extremes" (suppose lowlight and freezing action):
Shooting at 1/10sec @ f/2.8 is equivalent to 1/8sec @ f/3.2. Even better, one could shoot at 1/10 @ f/3.2 and there would be no noticeable difference.
Shooting at 1/2000sec @ f/2.8 is equivalent to 1/1750sec @ f/3.2. Same as above..

My guess is that the 1/4 or 1/3 stop loss is due to new coatings to better control flare on the DA lens and on a wide angle, it is one of the most important things imo.
The other big difference is the DA21 fits APS-C image circle, while FA20 fits 24x36mm... Does this matter to you?
Then, metal vs plastic construction; Size; Aperture ring vs not; Quickshift...
07-02-2013, 05:41 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by kh1234567890 Quote
Look at people's pictures. Then get the DA21.
Yep. Get it. It's perfect for landscape, cityscape (especially at night), nature, a stroll around town. People mentionned sharpness, flare, I'll ad that you gain quick-shift.
07-02-2013, 07:14 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
I'll ad that you gain quick-shift.
Not forgetting the cute lens hood !
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