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11-28-2013, 11:36 PM   #1
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DA 16-50 or DA 20-40 Black Friday

The main hole I have in my lens lineup is a weather sealed wide angle. I had bought the 16-50 several years ago but got 2 bad copies and ended up getting a refund. I had pretty much decided to go for the 20-40 eventually, because I think it will do all I need and will cost less. Then I looked at the B&H Black Friday prices and the 16-50 has a bigger discount and would be about $50 cheaper than the 20-40. Now I wonder if I should try another 16-50.

The only must is that the lens be sealed (I have a variety of other wide angle lens options - 12-24, 24 f2.8, 31 ltd). Smaller and lighter is better, but the size/weight of the 16-50 isn't that big of a deal. If you were buying tomorrow, which one would you buy and why?

11-28-2013, 11:42 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by mtngal Quote
The main hole I have in my lens lineup is a weather sealed wide angle. I had bought the 16-50 several years ago but got 2 bad copies and ended up getting a refund. I had pretty much decided to go for the 20-40 eventually, because I think it will do all I need and will cost less. Then I looked at the B&H Black Friday prices and the 16-50 has a bigger discount and would be about $50 cheaper than the 20-40. Now I wonder if I should try another 16-50.

The only must is that the lens be sealed (I have a variety of other wide angle lens options - 12-24, 24 f2.8, 31 ltd). Smaller and lighter is better, but the size/weight of the 16-50 isn't that big of a deal. If you were buying tomorrow, which one would you buy and why?
I would probably go for the 16-50mm if you don't care about size: more zoom range, faster aperture, and likely better image quality (though I can't really comment on that until the reviews start coming in).

Remember that by shopping at B&H after clicking through the link in my signature, you'll be eligible for a free account upgrade. But B&H stops taking orders around 4PM EST through the same time on Saturday.

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11-28-2013, 11:47 PM   #3
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Do you need constant f/2.8? If so then the 20-40 might not be what you want.

Other than that, since you have the 12-24 for wider then the 20-40 might work. But it is unproven at this point. The 16-50 is well known, like it or hate it at least you know what you are getting.

Personally I would love a 16-85 f/4 but thats just me.

But between those two I would go for 20-40 because it is a limited
11-29-2013, 03:16 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
I would probably go for the 16-50mm if you don't care about size: more zoom range, faster aperture, and likely better image quality (though I can't really comment on that until the reviews start coming in).
Adam, are you honestly thinking that the limited zoom will have worse IQ than the 16-50? Wasn't the review here comparing the 16-50 to the Sigma and Tamron equivalent lenses generally critical of the Pentax 16-50 IQ? If the 20-40 is worse than the 16-50 then it's hardly worthy of the Limited tag I would think.

11-29-2013, 03:40 AM   #5
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I saw some picture with 20-40 Limited, and they are very sharp and pleasant. But I don' remember where. If you are OK with this short focal range, go for it. But there are alternatives, like Sigma and Tamron
11-29-2013, 05:00 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
I would probably go for the 16-50mm if you don't care about size: more zoom range, faster aperture, and likely better image quality (though I can't really comment on that until the reviews start coming in).
You kill me...
11-29-2013, 10:27 AM   #7
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I debated over this recently too but just bit the bullet on the 16-50. It's more of a walkaround lens than the Limited as it has a longer range and constant 2.8 aperture.

If sharpness across the frame is important to you then the 20-40 might be a better choice. However I realized if I need sharpness on all sides of the photo I will probably be shooting f/8 landscapes. If I need f/2.8 I'll probably be shooting portraits or close ups, in which case corner sharpness doesn't matter because the corners will be filled with bokeh. From the samples of the 20-40 I've seen, I prefer the 16-50's bokeh.

The 20-40 may be a little quicker focusing since it has the DC motor so keep that in mind if you need it. I wouldn't be afraid of SDM failure at this point because it's late 2013 -- I'm willing to bet there isn't much more Hoya stock left and the new 16-50s are all upgraded with the newer, more reliable SDM.

Oh -- and size/weight is pretty different. I personally do not mind a large/heavy lens but I know some are looking for as light a camera as possible. That may or may not be important to you since the 16-50 is going to be a lot heavier and larger than the 20-40.
11-29-2013, 05:20 PM   #8
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I got tied up and didn't order anything before B&H closed for orders today, but I did notice that the offer would still be good tomorrow when they re-open. I'm still somewhat undecided, but leaning toward the 16-50. The only lens I have that I struggle a bit with is the DA*300 so the 16-50 isn't what I'd call "heavy." Smaller and lighter is more important for carting around in a bag with a bunch of other heavy lenses, one of the reasons I had been leaning toward the 20-40. It would be nice to have (potentially) faster AF - I hadn't used the 50-135 in a long time and was surprised at just how slow it really is. But then my primary usage for the lens will be landscape and travel so AF speed isn't a big issue. Oh well, I have a day to continue to think about it.

Does anyone have thoughts about this?

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