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07-07-2017, 12:33 PM   #1
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Most used lens for each format

I've been pondering this for a while and although I do have lenses I think I enjoy using most, strangely this does not tally with what I actually use, and get the best, most consistent results from.

So a question: per sensor format, what is your most productive lens ? One rule: NO second choices !!

For FF my clear winner is my PENTAX-D FA 50mm F2.8 macro, nothing comes close - neither the 31 or 77. Sharp across the frame. Light and it just seems to work across a range of needs, from walkabout, close-up and general landscape.

For cropped it is my DA* 50-135. I thought I preferred primes, no I do prefer primes, yet this lens is way ahead of the competition. Good sharpness for a zoom. Yes, it's a tad heavier than I'd like. But I find that I get the shot I want more often with this lens.

So one lens ONLY. What's yours, and maybe why? I'll be interested to find out ...

07-07-2017, 12:42 PM   #2
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For 645 Film it's the A 75/2.8
That's the normal FL and just feels right for that format. Nice compact lens too. Makes for a pretty compact minimal setup.

For 645 Digital it's the FA 45-85/4.5
I use that setup mostly for landscape shots and the FOV is good for sweeping landscapes, clouds, and maybe some wildflowers in the foreground with zoom versatility.

For FF it's the Tamron 28-75/2.8
It's crisp and versatile for landscapes and people shots. A good all-arounder.

For crop it's the DA 18-135
This setup goes on adventures and I need it to be versatile, weather proof, and as small and light as it can be.
IQ is generally good enough for the hike, ski, and bike photos I like to get with it. It wasn't too expensive in case something happens to it (I have lost one already).
07-07-2017, 12:55 PM   #3
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for me (APS-C) it would be my Tamron Adaptall-2 SP 72B, by almost 2-to-1... I shoot with a variety of lenses, but the 72B my favorite/most used....
07-07-2017, 01:09 PM   #4
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On APS-C the DA 16-85
On the K-1 the DFA 24-70

07-07-2017, 01:44 PM   #5

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FF - Used lots of different ones but I guess the FA* 85 is my adored lens here.
APS-C - Have to agree with the OP here, the DA* 50-135 is just <3
Q - For this one, the most used would have to be the 02 Standard Zoom
07-07-2017, 02:16 PM - 1 Like   #6
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Most used lenses per format

645N -- Pentax-A 645 120mm f 4.0 macro because it provides the most marvellous closeup flower photos imaginable, also used on K-1.
K-1 ff -- Pentax-FA 31mm f 1.8 limited because it has a special magic and sometimes even 3D
MZ-S film ff -- Pentax-FA 43mm f 1.9 for compactness and excellent rendering on film--the MZ-S is one of the cameras the 43 was designed for
APS-C -- Pentax-FA 77mm f 1.8 limited because it has special rendering that is almost impossible for any other lens to match. My wife calls it our magic lens.
Pentax 02 Standard Zoom 5-15mm f 2.8-4.5 for convenience

Auto 110 -- Pentax 110 24mm f 2.8 (This is just a joke because I have a 110 and that is the lens installed upon it at present, no film ever shot by me in this format)

Last edited by ivanvernon; 07-07-2017 at 02:25 PM. Reason: To add explanations for why each lens is preferred.
07-07-2017, 02:19 PM   #7
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If I could carry just one lens I'd sooner zoom with my feet. I'm just so comfortable with what to expect from it, and I expect a lot. It doesn't disappoint. Plus it's light and compact, always a plus.

From macro to landscape to impromptu portrait it handles it all with aplomb IMHO. Pair it with a good sensor and there's just an amazingly crisp and clean image ripe for the most aggressive cropping while still holding detail.

Last edited by gatorguy; 07-07-2017 at 02:24 PM.
07-07-2017, 02:19 PM - 1 Like   #8
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Apsc: Tamron 90mm

5D: 135 f/2

m4/3: Olly 75mm f/1.8

I might have a weird fetish problem with 135mm range...

07-07-2017, 02:43 PM   #9
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I tend to be quite faddy with my lenses and there is always a new current favourite, but the one constant dependable workhorse has been the Tamron 28-75
07-07-2017, 02:49 PM   #10
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APS-C: FA 31mm - i started using it as my "normal" lens
FF: probably also the FA 31, as I started taking more wide shots which I had previously used the 21mm for on APS-C
Though it could also be the 43mm, which I use the most on film.
07-07-2017, 03:48 PM   #11
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On APSC, I use the DA 35mm f2.4 the most, to answer the OP question.
There are better 35mm out there, but I don't have those. I'd love to try the HD DA 35mm f2.8, but can't get it atm. Sigma 35mm art is definitely a stunning lens, but its even more expensive plus its huge. FA31mm limited looks amazing, too, but I should stop listing fantasies. So I stick to the humble DA 35mm f2.4. I use it more than the DA 40mm XS. Recently DA 21mm is coming close but I haven't had it long enough to say I use it more than the DA 35mm. The DA 35mm doesn't render any unusual things, its not macro, its not supertelephoto or ultrawide. But it.. just works for so many subjects.

I suspect a lot of people will choose lenses close to 'normal'

Last edited by Na Horuk; 07-07-2017 at 04:09 PM.
07-07-2017, 03:57 PM   #12
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hey i'll play

for APS-C(K3II), it's FA31 for landscapes and astro
for 645Z, i'd say DFA25mm f/4 for general wide scenery
07-07-2017, 05:03 PM   #13
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On APS-C, the much-maligned but very good 16-50 f2.8. I have had really good luck with it.

On full frame (film or digital), the FA 28-105 f4-5.6. It's just so handy... but I wish it were 24-105...

07-07-2017, 05:05 PM   #14
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For me (K-3 and K-5) my favorite is the DA 21 Limited on one and DA 35 macro on the other. There are other lenses that are close but I just noted my absolute favorites
07-08-2017, 01:10 AM   #15

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Hmmm although my list will eventually change...

645 digital: i like using the 645 fa 75mm 2.8. It is small/compact allowing the camera seem smaller, puts out great tones and contrast.

For ff, i like using the dfa 15-30. Although big, i like the wide fov and also the colors that the lens helps to produce.

Apsc: i liked the hd da 16-85. Just was a nice walk around lens, covering a wide range of focal lengths.

M4/3: i like the oly 25m. Its small, works well in low light, gives a normal field of view.


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