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08-01-2013, 02:04 PM   #1
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Selecting a fast semi-wide prime

I'm looking for a wide(ish) angle f/1.8 prime lens. I can't afford the Pentax 31mm and it isn't as wide as I would like anyway. So I'm looking at the Sigma 20mm and 24mm f/1.8 primes.

The specific use for this lens will be indoor, low light pictures of adults, kids and animals, without flash. Think, bars, restaurants, and my in-laws cave-like cabin.

I've been looking at pictures online that were taken with these lenses and while there are a lot of them that have great color and composition I haven't found any that have impressed me with their sharpness. I'm wondering if someone who has either of these lenses could link a few well focused and sharp shots taken with it.

There are no shops in my area that stock pentax gear so I can't go try out these lenses.

Thanks in advance :-)



08-01-2013, 02:27 PM   #2
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Sad to say, but if you are looking for a wide lens that has a aperture close to f/1.8 your options are limited. As you are looking at the sigmas im assuming you are looking for a digital cropped sensor. I havent been able to play with either of the sigmas, but before i bought the 35mm 1.8, i did research into them. Results i found from images online didnt looks so great. If i remember correctly these lenses had the following faults 1) Lenses are large 2) soft wide open 3) heavy 4) suffered some cushioning.

If you cant afford the 35mm, I might suggest the FA 24mm f/2. It too has some flaws but seems better then the sigmas.

Sigma also came out with a 18-35mm f/1.8 I havent seen any results but am interested in seeing some pics. if you get this please post some results
08-01-2013, 02:30 PM   #3
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Have you looked at the Sigma 30/1.4 lenses? Wide and fast.

A refurbshed Sigma 28/1.8 is going for $339 through Sigma's outlet right now.
28mm F1.8 EX DG ASP Macro Refurbished | Sigma

A 24/1.8 from Sigma is going for $409 at the outlet.
http://www.sigmaphoto.com/product/24mm-f18-ex-dg-asp-macro-refurbished
08-01-2013, 02:30 PM   #4
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The Sigma 30/1.4 is a great indoor lens. Sharp enough even at 1.4. Superb at 2. In the center, no lens is really any sharper. The borders are crap, but at 1.4, they're OOF anyway! Of course the borders are still bad at f16, but I have a DA40 for across the frame sharpness.

It's not a perfect lens, but I do really like mine. The new ART one is supposed to be better; not sure if Pentax will get it.

At 1.4:



At 1.7:



At f9.5. The center remains absolutely sharp. The borders are getting better, but still noticeably soft even without pixel peeping. That said, the image still works. I wouldn't use it to reproduce documents, but for real, 3-D objects, it is just super!





Last edited by Kozlok; 08-01-2013 at 02:44 PM. Reason: added one more!
08-01-2013, 02:42 PM   #5
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I have looked at the sigma 30mm but I want something wider. 20mm is what I want but the mediocre reviews of the sigma 20mm led me to consider the sigma 24mm. I've also been considering the sigma 18-35mm but it's still a few months away from availability for pentax mount and I really want a prime.

keh has an FA* 24mm F2 listed today for 616 bucks. That's a bit steeper than I want to go but that lens does seem to be much more well regarded than any of the sigmas.
08-01-2013, 02:50 PM   #6
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I have the Sigma EX DG Macro 24mm f1.8. I find the sharpness quite acceptable for my needs. It's macro capability is a +.
Attached Images
     
08-01-2013, 02:55 PM   #7
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Thanks for posting those pics GPZ. I appreciate it.
08-01-2013, 07:51 PM   #8
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The upcoming Sigma 18-35 will probably be the best 2x mm lens you can buy for APS-C. If you're patient, that one should be pretty good. It will be pretty far north of your price point, though.

Your fast wide choices really are limited to the the (upcoming) 18-35, Sigma 20/24/28, the DA21Ltd (or the 15!), the FA24, and some older lenses. That's about it.

08-02-2013, 05:13 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kozlok Quote
The upcoming Sigma 18-35 will probably be the best 2x mm lens you can buy for APS-C. If you're patient, that one should be pretty good. It will be pretty far north of your price point, though.

Your fast wide choices really are limited to the the (upcoming) 18-35, Sigma 20/24/28, the DA21Ltd (or the 15!), the FA24, and some older lenses. That's about it.
The problem is he specified wide AND fast. The Limiteds that are wide are just not that fast. If you want something that is <2 you have to go old or Sigma.
08-02-2013, 08:11 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone for your thoughts and images. I think I am just going to save for the sigma 18-35 F/1.8.
08-02-2013, 08:16 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Homo_erectus Quote
I think I am just going to save for the sigma 18-35 F/1.8.
smart move. That's my plan too!
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