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08-11-2017, 09:45 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by BrianR Quote
The dfa100mm is terrifically sharp at all distances, and the dfa50mm appears to be as well. I think most of the complaints about the performance of macro lenses at far distances stems from older 'inert' designs (all lens elements move as one group when focusing) that were optimized for close up work at the expense of distance stuff. Pentax touts the FREE (fixed rear element extension) design as a component to upping the dfa macro's awesomeness at all distances (I'm paraphrasing here). I think versions date back to the mid 80's for Pentax.
Part of it could be how the AF is calibrated also. I calibrated my 100mm WR a bit ago and noticed that when set for macro distances it was a little off further out and vice versa when calibrated at a more normal shooting distance. It's certainly sharp from minimum distance to infinity just need to keep its idiosyncrasies in mind if you plan to use it for subjects beyond macro distance and adjust accordingly. I personally found it best to set it to focus further out and make micro adjustments for macro subjects.

08-11-2017, 10:10 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by pepperberry farm Quote
why 50mm?

why not something a bit wider?
My question as well. While just about any focal length has been used for landscape work with the 24x36mm format, greater utility tends to be had at 35mm and shorter. That being said, many of us learned and shot for years with a 50mm "normal" lens attached to the front of our camera and for most of us, landscapes were part of the mix.

What is the "best" lens for landscape? The only criteria are reasonably sharpness across the field with good contrast. The choices run into the hundreds, but these I can recommend...
  • Super/S-M-C/SMC Takumar 55/1.8
  • Pentax-K 55/1.8
  • Pentax-M/A/F/FA 50/1.7 (with possible exception of the "A" 50/1.7 due to pervasive aperture ring problems)
  • XR Rikenon 50/2 (PF Reviews...note that reviews complaining of plastic build are not this lens. I need to update the example links on my review )
  • Carl Zeiss Jena 50/2.8 Tessar (M42 with long product run...PF Reviews)


Steve
08-11-2017, 10:17 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
What is the "best" lens for landscape? The only criteria are reasonably sharpness across the field with good contrast. The choices run into the hundreds, but these I can recommend...
  • Carl Zeiss Jena 50/2.8 Tessar (M42 with long product run...PF Reviews)
Steve
The (Super/S-M-C/SMC) Macro-Takumar, Pentax K/M 50/4 are also tessar designs as well (and very sharp).
08-11-2017, 10:47 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
If you spend over $75 you should get a good 50mm and if you spend over $500 it might be 10% better
I only have one 50mm lens on my shelf that cost more than $50 and all but the expensive one* are decent for landscape. Yes, one may pay as much as $75 for a Pentax-M 50/1.7 (KEH has one EX with caps at that price point), but a price under $50 is much more common, usually with a functional camera body attached.


Steve

* My Sigma 50/2.8 EX DG Macro is not very good for landscape, despite being a floating element design. I did not buy it for that purpose so it doesn't bother me.

08-11-2017, 12:37 PM - 2 Likes   #20
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I was thinking macro myself, but without testing it is hard to say how much difference there will be between a macro and a regular fifty with both focussed at infinity and stopped down to f/8 or f/11. The Pentax f/1.7 in M or A flavour has an excellent reputation and would work well for less money than a macro. No need for autofocus either, landscapes don't move very fast.
08-11-2017, 12:46 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
My question as well. While just about any focal length has been used for landscape work with the 24x36mm format, greater utility tends to be had at 35mm and shorter. That being said, many of us learned and shot for years with a 50mm "normal" lens attached to the front of our camera and for most of us, landscapes were part of the mix.

What is the "best" lens for landscape? The only criteria are reasonably sharpness across the field with good contrast. The choices run into the hundreds, but these I can recommend...
  • Super/S-M-C/SMC Takumar 55/1.8
  • Pentax-K 55/1.8
  • Pentax-M/A/F/FA 50/1.7 (with possible exception of the "A" 50/1.7 due to pervasive aperture ring problems)
  • XR Rikenon 50/2 (PF Reviews...note that reviews complaining of plastic build are not this lens. I need to update the example links on my review )
  • Carl Zeiss Jena 50/2.8 Tessar (M42 with long product run...PF Reviews)


Steve
Thanks everyone for the interesting comments. From what I have read so far, all the 50/1.7 pentax lenses are highly rated, but are they better than the 1.4 (A) that I mentioned?

Also, it is interesting that the XR Rikenon 50/2 is in the list. I inherited the Sears version of this one years ago, but not sure if I ever used it. Mine does not have an A setting and it does have a light plastic feeling. I also have an additional 1.7 that focusses down to 2' instead of the 1.5' on my main one.

After looking at the posted review, I see that the one I have is a different design than the one on the review, which focusses to 1.5.'

Last edited by DSLRnovice; 08-11-2017 at 12:51 PM.
08-11-2017, 12:52 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
While just about any focal length has been used for landscape work with the 24x36mm format, greater utility tends to be had at 35mm and shorter.
I assume OP already has some wider lenses and needs something for a more normal perspective. Nothing wrong with normal and even telephoto landscape photos.

I just wanted to add that OP can also wait for the DFA* 50mm f1.4! It has been announced, it will be top of the line 50mm, as big as the Sigma Art 50mm. Massive lens, highly corrected, with all the premium features. Will definitely be sharp, and it is made for digital FF. But it will not be cheap
08-11-2017, 02:59 PM - 1 Like   #23
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For best bokeh, I'd say the FA 50mm f/1.4 while for best sharpness at aperture wider than f/2 would be the F or FA 50mm f/1.7, which is very good even wide open. At mid-apertures, it is a toss-up. For a great lens that will compliment the quality of your K-1, the FA 43mm f/1.9 Limited is very special.


Last edited by mikesbike; 08-11-2017 at 03:05 PM.
08-11-2017, 03:54 PM - 3 Likes   #24
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I also would recommend the DFA 50. Great landscape lens but you will also gain a great macro lens. Here's an example I shot recently(i guess I have been on a water falls kick lately!)
Attached Images
View Picture EXIF
PENTAX K-1  Photo 
08-11-2017, 04:13 PM - 1 Like   #25
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There's not much wrong with the DA*55





08-11-2017, 04:40 PM   #26
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@mikesbike - My Super-Tak 55/1.8 wipes the bokeh floor with my FA 50/1.4. But bokeh rarely enters into a landscape lens discussion.
08-11-2017, 05:08 PM - 2 Likes   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by jbinpg Quote
bokeh rarely enters into a landscape lens discussion.
Not in this day and age. No genre is safe from the ever growing plague of whoops-I-lost-my-contact-lens Bokeh to the borders photography.

08-11-2017, 05:09 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by jbinpg Quote
@mikesbike - My Super-Tak 55/1.8 wipes the bokeh floor with my FA 50/1.4. But bokeh rarely enters into a landscape lens discussion.
I had never heard the word "bokeh" until I came to this forum! Yeah, I'm a landscape guy.

Beautiful shots, Sandy!
08-11-2017, 05:18 PM - 1 Like   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by DSLRnovice Quote
Also, it is interesting that the XR Rikenon 50/2 is in the list. I inherited the Sears version of this one years ago, but not sure if I ever used it. Mine does not have an A setting and it does have a light plastic feeling.
It is hard to say regarding your Sears lens. The XR Rikenon 50/2 is always metal and is pretty heavy. Later models (XR Rikenon S, XR Rikenon L, etc.) may be plastic. I don't know whether they are equivalent optically. No Rikenon has the Pentax "A" contacts, though the Rikenon-P lenses offer the equivalent of the Pentax "A" setting when paired with a supporting Ricoh SLR.

Edit: Should probably have added the Rikenon P 50/2 to the list as well. It is more compact and plastic build, but admirably sharp. A word of caution is appropriate for the Rikenon P 50/2. It has a form of the dreaded "Ricoh Pin". My copy has the spring-loaded ball type and is safe on my K-3. A similar lens with the pin type might be difficult or virtually impossible to free from a Pentax AF camera.

Veined Decay


Pentax K10D, Rikenon P 50/2


Veined Decay (full resolution crop)




Steve

Last edited by stevebrot; 08-11-2017 at 10:49 PM.
08-11-2017, 07:08 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
Not in this day and age. No genre is safe from the ever growing plague of whoops-I-lost-my-contact-lens Bokeh to the borders photography.
I saw some examples from Christopher O'Donnell's book but never had a pleasure reading it (at least I cannot find free copy)... Interesting stuff there, at least for me.
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