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12-27-2013, 10:32 PM - 1 Like   #61
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QuoteOriginally posted by disco_owner Quote
My Best Lens is the ones I wear on my face to see the image sharp when I look through the OVF
Except I have a bad habit of not upgrading mine on a regular basis. I'm presently not technically legal to drive with the current pair. I do have current contact lenses.

12-27-2013, 10:52 PM   #62
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As the original poster, I want to clarify that the question "what is your best lens" was meant to be taken at face value. What is your best lens?

In my case it is the 16-45 f/4. It's certainly not the greatest lens, it's not a limited star HD super-duper lens. But I think for the moment it is the best lens I've got.

Now, I just took delivery of a couple of M primes, plus a M42 Super Takumar 55 f/2, IIRC. I still have to learn how to use them, because I'm a newbie, as they say.

But from what you guys have told me, and from what I'm now beginning to understand, it might turn out that one of these old primes I just bought may in fact be better built and have better optics than the 16-45. One of them may in fact be my new best lens. I dunno yet! But ironically, none of them cost me more than $50! Given my budget I'm doing my best to get the best quality optics I can find within my means.

So I guess that's why I asked. I wanted to try and figure the best optics I could aim for in an overall sense. And you guys gave me plenty to think about!

So! What is your best lens?

Best built, best performer, as the case may be.

And that's it! No right or wrong answer.

Which of your lenses belongs front and center in your starting line-up, however rich or humble?

Incidentally, yesterday I received the basic DA L 55-300 I got in very slightly used condition for $125 off eBay. I took a few pictures with it. I'm happy. It doesn't have the metal mount etc but I think it'll do just fine for now! The Great Elders around here have assured me it's just as good in most respects as its big brothers.

Also, I'm bidding on Vivitar Series 1 135 f/3.5.

I got that idea from you guys.

PS the eBay lens seller I got the primes from says I can use them with my Sony NEX too, with an adapter. Anybody know what the adapter model number or whatever is, by any chance? And is it a good idea to use them with a Sony too?

😀

Last edited by DavidSKAF3; 12-27-2013 at 11:29 PM.
12-28-2013, 08:37 AM   #63
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QuoteOriginally posted by davids8560 Quote
As the original poster, I want to clarify that the question "what is your best lens" was meant to be taken at face value. What is your best lens?

In my case it is the 16-45 f/4. It's certainly not the greatest lens, it's not a limited star HD super-duper lens. But I think for the moment it is the best lens I've got.

Now, I just took delivery of a couple of M primes, plus a M42 Super Takumar 55 f/2, IIRC. I still have to learn how to use them, because I'm a newbie, as they say.

But from what you guys have told me, and from what I'm now beginning to understand, it might turn out that one of these old primes I just bought may in fact be better built and have better optics than the 16-45. One of them may in fact be my new best lens. I dunno yet! But ironically, none of them cost me more than $50! Given my budget I'm doing my best to get the best quality optics I can find within my means.

So I guess that's why I asked. I wanted to try and figure the best optics I could aim for in an overall sense. And you guys gave me plenty to think about!

So! What is your best lens?

Best built, best performer, as the case may be.

And that's it! No right or wrong answer.

Which of your lenses belongs front and center in your starting line-up, however rich or humble?

Incidentally, yesterday I received the basic DA L 55-300 I got in very slightly used condition for $125 off eBay. I took a few pictures with it. I'm happy. It doesn't have the metal mount etc but I think it'll do just fine for now! The Great Elders around here have assured me it's just as good in most respects as its big brothers.

Also, I'm bidding on Vivitar Series 1 135 f/3.5.

I got that idea from you guys.

PS the eBay lens seller I got the primes from says I can use them with my Sony NEX too, with an adapter. Anybody know what the adapter model number or whatever is, by any chance? And is it a good idea to use them with a Sony too?

��
If you've got pretty much any pentax or other major-brand lens from before the mostly-plastic era, it's going to feel better-built than the plastic-bodied lenses today. But it might not have (any)MC, and just not be that great a design. So really you have two separate questions - better-performing, and better-built.

I once had a bunch of SMC Takumar primes, and probably they were better-performing than the zooms that replaced them, although in the film era that was much,much more difficult for a typical user like me to evaluate. But they didn't always fill the frame, so the overall net performance of the zooms seemed as good.

I've enjoyed my 16-45 too, but I wouldn't put it in the best-built category, given the barrel wobble (and more fringing than I'd like, in terms of the performance category, although overall performance seems very good, when not affected by the wobble.) If it could be de-wobbled, it would definitely pick up a few points, and the range (on the bottom end) is very useful.
12-28-2013, 10:14 AM   #64
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My best lens - (optically) is the one that I use the least - Rokinon 85 mm f/1.4. It was a freebie.

12-28-2013, 10:52 AM   #65
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I've got the 50 1.4, macro 50 f 2.8, 21, 40, 70 Limiteds, 55-300, 10-17 FE, 12-24, 16-45, Sigma 150-500 and also the kit 18-55. They're all good...except for the kit 18-55.
12-28-2013, 11:39 AM - 1 Like   #66
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
If it could be de-wobbled, it would definitely pick up a few points, and the range (on the bottom end) is very useful.
Pentax Canada de-wobbled mine. It had lost sharpness after a year+ of use, so I sent it in under warranty. It is now tight and sharp, easily my best zoom (i.e. beats my 18-55, 18-250mm, 18-135, and 55-300mm). The 16-45mm is actually sharper across the frame than my DA 15mm Ltd, but lower contrast and more CA.
https://picasaweb.google.com/100586096103361553535/Comparo?authkey=Gv1sRgCLOD9LjmoOKTlAE#
12-28-2013, 12:12 PM   #67
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
But they didn't always fill the frame, so the overall net performance of the zooms seemed as good

Hi thanks for the reply I am wondering what you wrote about "filling the frame" means.... Isn't this a matter of physically moving closer or farther from the subject to get that done with a prime, since you can't optically zoom? How is this a lens shortcoming?


Also, I've heard about the 16-45 wobble, but it seems the front end of mine is pretty firm to me - how do I tell if mine has WLS for sure? (WLS= wobbly lens syndrome) LOL


Dave
12-28-2013, 12:17 PM   #68
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Best lens?

I can't decide!!!

I like them all and each was chosen for its task and does it well.


Steve

Yes, I totally agree and understand - but one of them has to be the Peyton Manning, the Magic Johnson, the Vincent Van Gogh, the Henry Kissinger, the Justin Timberlake of the bunch!


And I suppose one of them has to be the Pee Wee Herman...


And lest we forget, the Kim Kardashian.

12-28-2013, 12:28 PM   #69
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Performance-wise: DA 15mm Limited

Fun-wise: F 50/1.7

Usefulness-wise: DA* 16-50/2.8

They all serve their purpose I can't pick a best...
12-28-2013, 12:46 PM   #70
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QuoteOriginally posted by NitroDC Quote
Performance-wise: DA 15mm Limited

Fun-wise: F 50/1.7

Usefulness-wise: DA* 16-50/2.8

They all serve their purpose I can't pick a best...

Hi! Can you elaborate on your experiences with the F 50/1.7, in the sense that makes it your fun-wise leader? That is an interesting and I think somewhat important designation I haven't even thought of! I'm a big advocate of fun!
12-28-2013, 02:44 PM   #71
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QuoteOriginally posted by davids8560 Quote
Hi! Can you elaborate on your experiences with the F 50/1.7, in the sense that makes it your fun-wise leader? That is an interesting and I think somewhat important designation I haven't even thought of! I'm a big advocate of fun!
I guess it's because its pretty small and light, and the rendering of 50/1.7's is something special. It's contrasty but not overly so, the color rendition is just perfect (not overly vibrant like with a DA lens) and sharpness is absolutely superb. I think the fun is in the rendering, handling and wide aperture. There's just something about it (and using it on a K-01) that makes it a joy to use. You look at your image after you take it and wish that real life looked that good. I guess that's the best way to explain it.

The DA15 comes pretty close with the fun factor too but I find it to be a more specific-use lens since it's difficult to shoot everything with wide angle. The 50 is more of a general-use lens.
12-28-2013, 03:06 PM   #72
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I have to force myself to use my other lenses because I am completely in love with my Vivitar 50mm f/1.7 (I also own it's twin, branded Promaster). Either the focal length fits my aesthetic, or I enjoy fitting my aesthetic to the focal length, and the handling is extremely pleasant. I have to give myself challenges and projects, specific uses for the other lenses because I default to this little cheap lens most of the time. It's sharp, fast and has great bokeh. It gives a warm color-cast to the images, which I find pleasing. It's the best all-around of the lenses I currently own, but I'm always prowling Ebay. ;-)

The Pentax-M 135mm f/3.5 gets an honorable mention, but is too long to win top spot.
12-28-2013, 03:15 PM - 1 Like   #73
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No Accounting For Taste?

Hi David,
After puzzling over an answer to this question for awhile (and replying earlier that it was difficult to choose, because of the various types of photography involved and the many different lenses needed for all situations) I decided to try a different slant; Another thread asks for your 10 best photos of 2013.
I had begun picking out my favorites and narrowed it down to a 'short' list of 15 likely suspects, but just haven't made the final cut yet, too busy with the holidays.
Well, my best or favorite lens MUST be well-represented on that list, right? Only makes sense, I didn't consciously 'force' a lens into use, just used the best one at hand, for the job. The answer to your question should be there.
Not so fast, LBA-man!
13 different lenses out of 15 photos. The smc A 135mm f/2.8 twice and the DA 35mm f/2.4, twice. Hardly a landslide victory.
So, once again, my answer is, 'I don't know'.
Ron
12-28-2013, 03:49 PM - 1 Like   #74
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QuoteOriginally posted by rbefly Quote
Not so fast, LBA-man!
13 different lenses out of 15 photos. The smc A 135mm f/2.8 twice and the DA 35mm f/2.4, twice. Hardly a landslide victory.
So, once again, my answer is, 'I don't know'.
Ron
This made me laugh!

But again, (almost) every lens is unique in some way that sets it apart from the others in some situations.
12-28-2013, 04:03 PM   #75
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The discusion and opinions in this thread provide a good insight into the "lens buying affliction" that a percentage of us suffer from........
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