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01-06-2017, 10:56 AM   #16
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Given the images I get with my A-400, I find it hard to believe there would be any serious issues with the FA*





The main issue is the ridiculous price used Pentax glass brings. Except for my A-400 of course. It sells for one dollar a millimetre. Ridiculously low.


Last edited by normhead; 01-06-2017 at 11:02 AM.
01-06-2017, 02:06 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Wow, a 9.64 rating. That's impressive.

That's better than the DFA 50 macro, DFA 100 macro and D FA 100 macro WR... but less than the DA*60-250 or DA*300.

A zoom that outperforms macro lenses, ask me how sceptical I am.

On second thought, no don't.

While I'm a big fan of the PF lens reviews, it's more for deciding if the way the lens is used is appropriate to your needs. Find someone who does what you do and see what he/she says. The sharpness numbers are extremely subjective and influenced by the price range of the lens.

The choice zoom or prime, is way more critical to your decision than the IQ of the images. Both produce excellent images.

Both produce some stinkers. I'd love to give an FA*400 a test drive although I'd suggest the DA*300 ƒ4 and TC combo make it largely redundant. That would give you 420mm ƒ5.6 with quiet focusing and two useful focal lengths instead of one. The apeal of a 400 5.6 escapes me.
My opinion: if you go whith the 150-450, you will get best of modern technology and high end glas whith improved coatings. You will get in lens corrections, quick shift and auto-presets, so taking good pictures will be no challenge, if you know to handle a heavy lens.
Going whith FA*400 or A 400, you have to work much harder for getting equal quality, but it is fun to go this way. Yes, using my A 400 is allways a problem in harsh backlight scenes, but the lens is very,very sharp and contrasty! If I do it all right, I can't believe getting better pictures whith the 150-450! But I like to slow my work down, taking my time for every shot, no need to use lenses like a machine gun. Maybe I'm getting old....
01-06-2017, 07:33 PM   #18
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The weight isn't really an issue as I have the FA* 80-200 which is pretty hefty itself. It's heavier than the FA* 400, but not as heavy as the 150-450. I like the way the F and FA lenses render color. However, sharpness is really my main concern. The 150-450 definitely has many advantages that have been pointed out. The faster auto focus is definitely nice for birds in flight. I've read some reviews that say the 150-450 is sharp at the long end and others that have said it's a little soft. I would mainly be using the long end and really would like it to be sharp. That is the man reason I was considering the FA* 400. I know primes are usually sharper than zooms. I was hoping that someone had experience with both of these.

---------- Post added 01-06-2017 at 10:26 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
Hi, I don't mean to derail the thread to talk of a different lens, but re: F*300 (which should be noted is an entirely different lens than the FA*400), the F*300 is indeed sharper than the DFA150-450 at 300mm. Nobody should expect otherwise as it is a quality prime specifically tuned at 300mm. I needed the longer length, but if i did not, I would certainly stay with the F*300. I have an excellent copy of the DFA150-450 and it is working very well for me at 450mm + 1.4x TC.
FWIW.
Mike, do you have any images of the 150-450 with the 1.4 TC? I have the 1.4 TC and have used it with my F* 300 and it's works nicely. Was wondering what your images look like with the 150-450 combo.

Last edited by Butch5; 01-07-2017 at 08:21 AM.
01-06-2017, 09:30 PM   #19
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I found some images taken with the FA*400. Here is a link. These look pretty good at f5.6

Hawfinch | JuzaPhoto


Here is one from the 150-450

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/56241505

Both look really good.


Last edited by Butch5; 01-06-2017 at 09:38 PM.
01-06-2017, 09:41 PM - 2 Likes   #20
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Here's a few more taken with the FA* 400



01-06-2017, 09:57 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kameko Quote
Here's a few more taken with the FA* 400



Nice shots! Do you what the aperture you used?
01-06-2017, 10:21 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Butch5 Quote
Nice shots! Do you what the aperture you used?
Thanks First shot was wide open, 2nd was @ f/6.7
01-07-2017, 12:40 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Butch5 Quote

Mike, do you have any images of the 150-450 with the 1.4 TC? I have the 1.4 TC and have used it with my F* 300 and it's works nicely. Was wondering what your images look like with the 50-450 combo.
Here are some 150-450 images: Lens: D FA 150-450 | Flickr
Images #4, 6, 8, and 11 use the Tamron 1.4x TC

---------- Post added 01-06-2017 at 11:47 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by WPRESTO Quote
Try the 1.4X TC on your 300mm. Chances are the IQ will be indistinguishable from what you'd get with the 400mm at equivalent apertures, and unless my math fails me, you'll only be losing a half stop.
I've shot with the F*300 + Tamron 1.4x TC extensively. In every case where I needed a tighter FOV, I used the TC with great results.
I cannot comment on the FA400 since I do not have one. It would make no sense for me to own a longer FL that underperformed the shorter FL+ TC combo.


Last edited by mikeSF; 01-07-2017 at 12:55 AM.
01-07-2017, 08:51 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
Here are some 150-450 images: Lens: D FA 150-450 | Flickr
Images #4, 6, 8, and 11 use the Tamron 1.4x TC

---------- Post added 01-06-2017 at 11:47 PM ----------



I've shot with the F*300 + Tamron 1.4x TC extensively. In every case where I needed a tighter FOV, I used the TC with great results.
I cannot comment on the FA400 since I do not have one. It would make no sense for me to own a longer FL that underperformed the shorter FL+ TC combo.
Nice shots Mike! What I am considering about the FA* 400 is if it is sharper than the F*300 and Pentax HD 1.4 TC combination. If it's not then I'l just stay with the F*300 and the TC. If it is sharper then it should work well is the TC which would extend my reach even more. Initially I was gong to get the 150-450, but was concerned about sharpness because it is a zoom. I decided to look at some primes in a longer focal length thinking they would be sharper.

---------- Post added 01-07-2017 at 11:12 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Kameko Quote
Here's a few more taken with the FA* 400




Looks pretty nice even wide open.

---------- Post added 01-07-2017 at 11:13 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Given the images I get with my A-400, I find it hard to believe there would be any serious issues with the FA*





The main issue is the ridiculous price used Pentax glass brings. Except for my A-400 of course. It sells for one dollar a millimetre. Ridiculously low.
I had looked at this lens too as a possibility. Nice!
01-07-2017, 09:48 AM - 1 Like   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by Butch5 Quote
I had looked at this lens too as a possibility. Nice!
The biggest issue with this lens is it doesn't play nice with the 1.7x TC. For those unfamiliar, the F 1.7x AF adapter adds limited AF to an A lens. So with an A*300 2.8, you get 510 ƒ4.5 using the TC. The 9.3 minimum aperture of the A-400 when using the 1.7x means it doesn't reliably auto focus.

I have trouble thinking I would buy a telephoto that had absolutely no AF ability even with the ƒ1.7 adapter. It's just one less piece of flexibility. The 400s, should have been ƒ4, not ƒ5.6. Then they'd be useful. ( They'd also be double the price.)

I love the idea of 680mm , my A-400 with the 1.7x, it just doesn't work. Maybe if the FA* is a little sharper, it would, who knows?

Ian says he can use a a TC on 600mm ƒ6.3 lens with his Nikon system, these things aren't written in stone.

One important factor in lens design is the size o the front element. The DA*200 and DA* 300 both take 77mm filters. The DFA 150-450 takes an 86mm filter. Thus has the potential to take in more light. Yet at 200mm the 200 is 2.8 and the 150-450 is 4.5. All the flexibility you gain in FL with the zoom, you lose in Aperture, especially when considering Aperture to weight ratio.

Last edited by normhead; 01-07-2017 at 10:21 AM.
01-07-2017, 10:30 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
The biggest issue with this lens is it doesn't play nice with the 1.7x TC. For those unfamiliar, the F 1.7x AF adapter adds limited AF to an A lens. So with an A*300 2.8, you get 510 4.5 using the TC. The 9.3 minimum aperture of the A-400 when using the 1.7x means it doesn't reliably auto focus.

I have trouble thinking I would buy a telephoto that had absolutely no AF ability even with the 1.7 adapter. It's just one less piece of flexibility. The 400s, should have been 4, not 5.6. Then they'd be useful. ( They'd also be double the price.)

I love the idea of 680mm , my A-400 with the 1.7x, it just doesn't work. Maybe if the FA* is a little sharper, it would, who knows?

Ian says he can use a a TC on 600mm 6.3 lens with his Nikon system, these things aren't written in stone.

One important factor in lens design is the size o the front element. The DA*200 and DA* 300 both take 77mm filters. The DFA 150-450 takes an 86mm filter. Thus has the potential to take in more light. Yet at 200mm the 200 is 2.8 and the 150-450 is 4.5. All the flexibility you gain in FL with the zoom, you lose in Aperture, especially when considering Aperture to weight ratio.
There are so many things to consider, it's crazy. It's hard to decide without a side by side comparison with images from the same camera. I see some images that look really good from both lenses and then some that don't look to good from both lenses. I'm sure this is due to different conditions, use of tripod or not, aperture, etc. I really like the conveniences of the 150-450, but I also want the sharpest images I can get.
01-07-2017, 11:07 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Butch5 Quote
Nice shots Mike! What I am considering about the FA* 400 is if it is sharper than the F*300 and Pentax HD 1.4 TC combination. If it's not then I'l just stay with the F*300 and the TC. If it is sharper then it should work well is the TC which would extend my reach even more...[COLOR="Silver"]
i hear you and i wish i had some first hand knowledge of the FA400 to contribute.
Of course with older lenses, it comes down to the specific copy you acquire, so the only way to know is to have both side by side to compare. good luck!
01-07-2017, 11:13 AM   #28
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I have the D FA 150-450 and that funky little A* 300mm F4 lens that I used to rave about. But on the K1 the A* 300mm lens is a purple fringe monster. Even in the center and even stopped down. Surprised the heck out of me. Keeping away from high contrast shots it is very sharp. My 150-450 has been a very solid performer on my K3 and K1. I have not done much specific testing at various focal lengths but when I evaluate my non keepers, it has never been the lens that is at fault.

I also have a Sigma 300mm f2.8 lens but the D FA 150-450 is so good that it sits unused more than it should. The 300mm f2.8 lens is sort of a normal lens for me so I really need to drag it back out. Especially since Mrs. gaweidert got it for me as a retirement present last spring.

As someone who learned photography when zoom lenses were strictly for amateurs who could not afford a good kit of primes, the quality of the modern zoom lens has amazed me.
01-07-2017, 12:41 PM   #29
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More experimenting....

K-1 with the A-400 F 1.7x AF adapter

This image maxes out everything


These it's hard to tell if the image would have been sharper shooting without the 1.7 and enlarging.










The problems of narrow DoF shooting at 680mm was not anticipated. Just when I finally convince myself I should sell the lens, I find something it can do. Is that first image worth keeping the lens for? I'm not going to get as good an image with my K-3. I'm not going to get as good an image with a shorter combo. But, I got 1 shot I consider exceptional out of 155 images. Is the gain worth the pain? How does one make these decisions?

I'm guessing for these shots, the star in the FA*400 ƒ5.6 would make a difference. Although the first shot would suggest with better technique I might be able to do a lot better on the others even with the consumer A-400. After all, if you can do it in one, you should be able to do it in all of them.

Last edited by normhead; 01-07-2017 at 12:59 PM.
01-23-2017, 12:34 AM   #30
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those look fantastic. I would go with the 150-450 because of the zoom. But the prime is nice too
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