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09-05-2017, 01:38 PM   #1
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SMC PENTAX D-FA 100mm WR vs SMC Pentax F 100mm

Which lens would prefer based on performance and color rendition!

09-05-2017, 01:44 PM - 1 Like   #2
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Both lenses share similar optics, so from an image quality standpoint I wouldn't expect any major differences. However, the D FA is some 250g lighter (and has weather sealing of course), whereas the F has a focus limiter which is nice if you like to use AF.

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09-05-2017, 02:33 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Both lenses share similar optics, so from an image quality standpoint I wouldn't expect any major differences. However, the D FA is some 250g lighter (and has weather sealing of course), whereas the F has a focus limiter which is nice if you like to use AF.
I heard that the F slow with auto focus! Is this true? Then I think there's no reason to spend 550$ on the F 100mm
09-05-2017, 02:35 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by SunnyG. Quote
I heard that the F slow with auto focus! Is this true? Then I think there's no reason to spend 550$ on the F 100mm
All these macros are slow as they are screwdrive and have a really long throw. That's why the limiter on the F lens is nice- it will limit the focusing range to speed up overall times for when the camera does hunt.


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09-05-2017, 02:47 PM   #5
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Pentax SMC F/FA/DFA 100mm f/2.8 Macro | Flickr
09-05-2017, 02:50 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
All these macros are slow as they are screwdrive and have a really long throw. That's why the limiter on the F lens is nice- it will limit the focusing range to speed up overall times for when the camera does hunt.
But for 500$ which one do you suggest?

---------- Post added 09-05-17 at 02:55 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by donlass Quote
Wow those pictures are beautiful!
09-05-2017, 02:59 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by SunnyG. Quote
But for 500$ which one do you suggest?
Like I said, optically they are the same; the D FA is lighter and weather-sealed, whereas the F has a focus limiter. Both are nice advantages. Personally I'd go for the D FA just for the smaller size (+ warranty if new).

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09-05-2017, 04:52 PM   #8
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is there a reason why this one isn't in the discussion

SMC Pentax-D FA 100 mm F2.8 Macro

https://www.pentaxforums.com/lensreviews/SMC-Pentax-DFA-100mm-F2.8-Macro-Lens.html

it is the non WR model

I really like it, and I got it for a good price used from a forum member

09-05-2017, 05:13 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by SunnyG. Quote
But for 500$ which one do you suggest?
I can get a brand new 100 wr in less than 500 USD from amazon Japan and used at around 370 USD. I believe price out side of Japan should be somewhat similar. Get the wr lens, you will be happy with it.
09-05-2017, 06:02 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by SunnyG. Quote
But for 500$ which one do you suggest?

---------- Post added 09-05-17 at 02:55 PM ----------

[snip]

Buy a new one from Pentax. You get a great new lens with WR and a warranty, and Pentax gets a sale, and you help the company survive another day to be there the next time you have some LBA - win for everyone.
09-05-2017, 06:35 PM - 1 Like   #11
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I have long had an also excellent old Sigma AF 105mm EX with a focus limiter switch and aperture ring, which is why I keep it for film use. For all other occasions I prefer my DA 100mm WR lens. For me, I found I used the focus limiter when I was using the lens outside the macro range, and at varying distances. As long as I was operating within a certain distance range the AF would not be winding in and out anyway, to the extremes a macro lens can. The limiter switch prevents this extreme winding when it becomes a problem due to using it at varying distances. In other words, if I was focusing at various points, but all at some distance, the focus limiter was not needed. Likewise if I was focusing at various points, but all within a similar closer distance. But if I went from a closer area to a farther point, it would start winding, slowing the AF, so the limiter would be helpful.

I found the WR to be very valuable, since drippy conditions often present good opportunities for macro work. I also read a report that the new lens has better contrast at wide open aperture. It is lighter but beautifully built.

Last edited by mikesbike; 09-05-2017 at 06:43 PM.
09-06-2017, 12:38 AM   #12
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They are close but not the same.
F and FA 100 f/2.8 Macro's has the same features (focus limiter). But the FA has the newer ghostless coating of the lens elements. Those has 9 elements in 8 groups and a large front lens element with 58 mm filter thread.

DFA 100 f/2.8 and the WR-version has the same lens coating, an upgraded version of the ghostless coating, and while they have a similar arrangement of 9 elements in 8 groups their optical elements differs from the F/FA, plus they have a smaller front lens element and with 49 mm filter thread.

So what does this mean optically? The two DFA versions has a higher contrast than the F and FA versions, also a more cold - or neutral - colour balance / colour rendition, where the F and FA are slightly warmer. Some has suggested that the DFA versions are actually based upon the Tokina AF 100 f/2.8 Macro, or it is the other way around. I honestly don't know. (but the Tokina and Pentax 35 f/2.8 Macro has definately the same optics).

But I can't really say it makes so much difference on digital, the processing and auto white balance adjusts... but on analogue film, the difference in character is more noticeable, and I would rate the F and FA as being more pleasant to the eye even if the DFA versions are technically superior.
09-06-2017, 02:39 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by RMabo Quote
They are close but not the same.
F and FA 100 f/2.8 Macro's has the same features (focus limiter). But the FA has the newer ghostless coating of the lens elements. Those has 9 elements in 8 groups and a large front lens element with 58 mm filter thread.

DFA 100 f/2.8 and the WR-version has the same lens coating, an upgraded version of the ghostless coating, and while they have a similar arrangement of 9 elements in 8 groups their optical elements differs from the F/FA, plus they have a smaller front lens element and with 49 mm filter thread.

So what does this mean optically? The two DFA versions has a higher contrast than the F and FA versions, also a more cold - or neutral - colour balance / colour rendition, where the F and FA are slightly warmer. Some has suggested that the DFA versions are actually based upon the Tokina AF 100 f/2.8 Macro, or it is the other way around. I honestly don't know. (but the Tokina and Pentax 35 f/2.8 Macro has definately the same optics).

But I can't really say it makes so much difference on digital, the processing and auto white balance adjusts... but on analogue film, the difference in character is more noticeable, and I would rate the F and FA as being more pleasant to the eye even if the DFA versions are technically superior.
there is another difference you did not mention

$

sometimes you make compromises and don't, or can't afford one over the other because of the money.

a focus limiter would be nice and so would be WR but folks take photos without those and survive.

good glass ah, that is kinda important, I think. so for me that would rule out the F and the choice between the others might depend on the $ honestly

Last edited by aslyfox; 09-06-2017 at 02:45 AM.
09-06-2017, 03:10 PM   #14
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One thing to consider. The current DFA versions have quick shift which I believe the F series lenses do not. This makes screwdrive autofocus on these lenses a lot quicker and quieter. I use quick shift for a coarse focus adjustment and autofocus to fine tune the final focus. I have the DFA 100 WR version which is one of my favorite lenses. If, however the F series version can be obtained for a good price, I would not have hesitated to get it.
09-06-2017, 06:13 PM   #15
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DFA 100 WR - Glad I got mine when I did. Last year I paid $370 from B&H, brand new.... Maybe hold off, black friday is coming.

I may be wrong but the F100 doesn't appear to be easy to come by...
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