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10-30-2013, 05:57 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
I am not convinced my current copy is as good as it gets
you should have bought mine, as it is a superb copy. It has been sitting in the shop window on Grenfell street for months.


Last edited by Digitalis; 10-30-2013 at 10:49 PM.
10-30-2013, 06:11 PM   #17
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The green-stripe Limiteds live on - so much for waiting for the personal DA15 sales though other Limiteds may be less affected.
10-30-2013, 06:21 PM   #18
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Out the front yard during the big fall moon a couple weeks back 2.5 sec exposure, SMC.

Last edited by lukulele; 10-04-2014 at 06:52 AM.
10-30-2013, 06:36 PM - 1 Like   #19
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Wasn't the implementation of rounded aperture blades expected to have an effect on starbursts? I think that is a miss-step on the engineering here - I can see rounded aperture for the 35 / 40 / 70 for the nice bokeh, but the 15 is the slowest of the bunch, and that starburst is almost trademark for the lens. HD DA 15mm f4 limited Mark II anyone?

10-30-2013, 06:37 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
you should have bough mine as it is a superb copy. It has been sitting in the shop window on Grenfell street for months.
Hmmm. I just rang Twin City Cameras. It's not there now....
10-30-2013, 06:40 PM   #21
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Perhaps someone will be able to coax decent starbursts from the HD version. We haven't seen many images yet from the new version - maybe time will tell.
10-30-2013, 06:43 PM   #22
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I'd say this might be one of the nuances of the Pentax system that Ricoh wasn't aware of. I kinda doubt that this one will be fixed, but I hope I'm wrong. I just don't see them going back and doing a third version of the lens, with all that that entails (supply chain, etc.)
10-30-2013, 06:46 PM   #23
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I ordered a SMS from Adorama a week ago. Looks like a good decision.

10-30-2013, 06:51 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by DogLover Quote
I'd say this might be one of the nuances of the Pentax system that Ricoh wasn't aware of.
I think that you make a good point. On the other hand - our 'Mind Control' thread - all 420 pages - certainly portrays all of the valued characteristics of the SMC DA 15. Starbursts, 'likes' and compliments abound. Then again... maybe Ricoh/Pentax folks have never visited PF! I'm thinking we'll need more user experience with the HD lens.

Otherwise, the SMC 15 is destined to become one of those sought-after classics.

- Craig
10-30-2013, 07:10 PM   #25
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Yep. Great thread. This is exactly what I wanted to know when the new HD DA 15 was announced. Looks like I'll be hanging on to my SMC DA 15.
10-30-2013, 07:10 PM   #26
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Many here have said they prefer the SMC picture. I think it depends on what an individual qualifies as better. If it's just the starbursts then the SMC meets your need. One of the reasons I got rid of my SMC 15 was due to the lack of sharpness. Looking at the first set of photos, the HD 15 is noticeably sharper edge-to-edge.

While sharpness has never been my highest consideration in a lens, compare the right sides of the photos and the HD wins by a landslide. I sure like the SMC starbursts and am a bit disappointed they changed the aperture blades, but I also like the other improvements the HD coating offers.
10-30-2013, 11:04 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by builttospill Quote
Many here have said they prefer the SMC picture. I think it depends on what an individual qualifies as better. If it's just the starbursts then the SMC meets your need. One of the reasons I got rid of my SMC 15 was due to the lack of sharpness. Looking at the first set of photos, the HD 15 is noticeably sharper edge-to-edge.

While sharpness has never been my highest consideration in a lens, compare the right sides of the photos and the HD wins by a landslide. I sure like the SMC starbursts and am a bit disappointed they changed the aperture blades, but I also like the other improvements the HD coating offers.
I'll take better color any day over optical effects.
10-30-2013, 11:19 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by builttospill Quote
One of the reasons I got rid of my SMC 15 was due to the lack of sharpness. Looking at the first set of photos, the HD 15 is noticeably sharper edge-to-edge.
I agree, the optical design of the DA15mm f/4 leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to corner sharpness. Though having said that I would be extremely cautious of making solid judgements based on reduced resolution images posted on the web: high quality 100% crops are acceptable - but only if both images are taken within a reasonable timeframe, and correct photographic technique with all relevant photographic parameters included in the EXIF. Niether of the sample images posted by the OP above meet that criteria.

QuoteOriginally posted by builttospill Quote
compare the right sides of the photos and the HD wins by a landslide.
Considering the escalating incidence of centering defects with lenses with increasingly short focal lengths* I would be cautious when making statements like this. I would be only confident making such a call when I was confident that both lenses were within tolerances set by the manufacturer. E.G The HD lens could be de-centered giving an advantage to the right side, while the non-HD lens could be spot on.

As for the comments on colour rendering, again I recommend being cautious - with no exif, and no indication of the WB settings used by the photographer we have no idea of exactly what is going on there.


*and not just lenses from pentax. Sigma has, in my opinion by far the worst record for issues like this - I went through a few copies of the sigma 8-16mm before I got one that was certified by sigma to conform with their specifications.

Last edited by Digitalis; 10-31-2013 at 02:00 AM.
10-30-2013, 11:28 PM   #29
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Of course, I also prefer the SMC version for the nice starbursts, but... The HD version does look a tad more contrasty. Just a tiny little bit though. Flare looks exactly the same.
10-30-2013, 11:41 PM   #30
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I will never understand why Ricoh did this to the 15, destroying one of the signature, highly sought after features of this lens. What kind of "beautiful bokeh" are they expecting people to get with a 15mm f/4?
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