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09-13-2014, 12:08 AM   #1
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Pentax FA 43 Ltd and low light

Hi folks,
So I have been thinking about getting the FA43 so I can pair it with my Pentax PZ1p. I have a DA40mm and love it but it's too slow at F2.8
I have the CV 40mm F2 Ultron and manual focus is OK on the PZ1p... but not perfect.

I've considered now the FA43 due to having autofocus ability and also an F1.9 lens for my low light work. I know autofocus is usually body-dependent but how is the AF when you pair your cameras with the FA43? Was it quick? Slow? Hunted more in low light (or less)?

09-13-2014, 01:59 AM   #2
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My 43mm is fast an accurate, no hunt, even in low light with my K-5 II. I only use the center sensor for AF.
09-13-2014, 02:39 AM   #3
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The difference between f/2 and f/1.9 is trivial. From what I have heard the Voigtlander Ultron 40mm f/2 is sharper in the corners than the FA43 at f/2. Depending on the camera body you are using on will determine how effective AF is under low light - on the newer DSLRs like the K5II(s) and K3 it should be decent.
09-13-2014, 05:39 AM   #4
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Voigtländer Ultron 40/2.0 vs Pentax FA 35/2.0

might be of interest

09-13-2014, 11:04 AM   #5
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As you mentioned it is definitely a combination of body and lens. I have experience with the DA40 and FA43, but only on digital bodies. The DA40 was my first limited, used on K-x (backfocused), then K-5 mk1 (adjusted for focusing it worked fine) and now on K-3 (works just as fine as on the K-5).

The FA43 is a different story though. I never got to use it on my K-x, but on the K-5 it had focusing issues, both front- and back and depending on light (problem with backlight and/or artificial lighting). Not a simple adjustment. I was disappointed and didn't use it that much on the K-5 obviously. But when I got my K-3 it got along much better and focus is very accurate under all circumstances. This is pure speculation from my side, but probably the AF-system in the 90's film camera is not better that the K-5.. Then again it was not THAT bad, but you often view your digital images in 1:1 or 1:2 (pixel peep) and on film I think there will be more leeway.

I have not sold my DA40 yet, but I don't think it has much advantages over the FA43 so keeping both long term is probably redundant..
09-15-2014, 09:28 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
The difference between f/2 and f/1.9 is trivial. From what I have heard the Voigtlander Ultron 40mm f/2 is sharper in the corners than the FA43 at f/2.

The FA43 is a fantastic lens and has many strengths but wide open performance is not impressive. In particular the corners need considerable stopping down in order to become decent.

I can recommend the FA43 in general, but I'm not sure I'd get it as a low light lens.

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