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12-20-2017, 07:22 AM   #31
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I’ll raise another, more important point. If it is selling for less than market rate, you can buy it, use it for a few weeks and sell at a small profit if YOU feel it’s not worth it.

12-20-2017, 07:50 AM   #32
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I have owned the DA 35 F2.4 (NOTE: there is no DAL 35 even though it should perhaps be called that. ) I liked it ok. But I never warmed to it. I also own the FA 35 and the FA 31 as well as the DA 40. While the FA 31 is special the diminishing returns over the FA 35 OR DA 40 are a real consideration. The lens is excellent, but the others are as well. The special characteristics are nice and as others have said the wow factor can be huge. But as pointed out - only if you use it frequently enough.
12-20-2017, 07:50 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
I currently have two copies of the FA31 because I found a MIJ silver one but haven't gotten around to selling my AIV black one. They are both equally wonderful.

Having said that, with the quite capable 35/2.4 already in your bag I reckon you'd be better served with the FA77. It makes a very fine landscaper, it's considerably cheaper, and would compliment your fast fifty nicely for portraiture if you do that sort of stuff.

But it seems inevitable you'll get a FA31 eventually
Unless it's cheap for a reason... I'd be wary of buying too good to pass up "deals", but maybe it's just paranoia (or envy )...
12-20-2017, 08:02 AM - 1 Like   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kozlok Quote
I’ll raise another, more important point. If it is selling for less than market rate, you can buy it, use it for a few weeks and sell at a small profit if YOU feel it’s not worth it.
Except for the part where my use pattern suggests it would take me more than a year to even evaluate it. I'm sure its worth it for those who shoot a lot in that focal length. But for me, possibly 10 pictures a year if I have it with me every time I want it, that's $100 an image, I'd have to use it for 10 years to get the cost down to 10$ an image, and it would be worse if you complied interest.

I would suggest any one do that kind of analysis before buying any lens. How many images will the little bit of difference be meaningful, and what will it cost me per image to obtain that?
FA 31 possible usage on based on my library 10 Images, $100 an image.

Between 28-105m I have 500 images. Cost $700, cost per image 1.4 dollars per image. The cost of my 31 images would be 71 times more than a 28-105. I'm not saying everyone is like me. Just saying, if you actually break down the numbers, it could really be a mistake buying that lens, or any lens. You really have to know what you shoot. Discussing the value of a lens without understanding how much you'd be likely to use it is not very intelligent.

I would like to see possible use at more than 10% of my images (my DA*60-250 is 11%

My lenses over 300mm where most of my money is tied up are over 40% of my images. The max I could use the 31 ltd would be 3%. It's just not a lens for everyone. It's good deal, if you use it. In my case, I'd have to get into possibly using it for 10% of my images before i'd pay that kind of money for it. That's 3 times more than I use that focal length right now, and that's including any thin up to 40mm. If I count everything between 31 and 35mm, it's 1%,

Surely the biggest factor in "Is it worth it?" is how much you might use it.

After that, you'd still have to evaluate "For what I do, how much difference will it make image to image?" That's also part of "Is it worth it. If there's no discernible improvement in IQ then it may not be worth it even if you'd shoot 40% of your images with it.

Unfortunately, only a prospective buyer can figure out for themselves whether or not helens is "worth it". What I think only applies to me, your mileage will almost certainly vary.

I bet less than 1% of the forum have 40% of their images 300mm or over. My numbers mean something to me, not to anyone else. It is posted as an example of how I tend to evaluate such things.

Now if we are talking about collecting and owning a lens with cult status, it's definitely worth it. For that type of lens, it's cheap.


Last edited by normhead; 12-20-2017 at 08:24 AM.
12-20-2017, 08:38 AM - 1 Like   #35
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Personally, I think I'd want something wider, so I went with a Sigma 28mm f1.8 prime. I've taken some pictures with it that I'm quite happy with. I've got the plastic DA 35 and like the sharpness wide open but wish it was faster for a more shallow depth of field. It's pretty "clinical" feeling to me.

The old FA* 24mm f2.0 still has me curious as well but I feel like they're pretty costly for a lens that hasn't been made for nearly 15 years.
12-20-2017, 08:41 AM - 3 Likes   #36
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The problem with focal length analysis is that equipment available can change preferences. I never shot wide when I was younger, but I did it frequently as soon as I got the da 15!
12-20-2017, 09:25 AM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kozlok Quote
I’ll raise another, more important point. If it is selling for less than market rate, you can buy it, use it for a few weeks and sell at a small profit if YOU feel it’s not worth it.
Very much so.

Lenses like the FA limiteds keep their value quite nicely. Consumer zooms, not so much.
12-20-2017, 09:49 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
The problem with focal length analysis is that equipment available can change preferences. I never shot wide when I was younger, but I did it frequently as soon as I got the da 15!
Only if you have zooms that don't cover that focal length. SO if your widest zoom is 18mm and you buy a 15mm, you may end up taking images you wouldn't have taken. In APS-c I have my Sigma 8-16 and I take very few images at 15mm. Most are in the 12-14 range, with a bit heavier use at 8mm where I have to use it even if I need wider.

Look at the lw/ph for the 31. at it's best ƒ4, 2345 lw/ph/\.

http://www.photozone.de/images/8Reviews/lenses/pentax_31_18/mtf.gif

Now look at the DA 35 2.4 with a lw/ph at ƒ5.6 and 2723 lw/ph

If you are cropping the 31 to 35 a 12% crop you are looking at 2063 lw/ph. instead of 2723, that's a 660 lw/ph drop in resolution compared to using the right FL instead of the 31. It would cost you 33% of your resolution. So yes you could use it, but it could cost you dearly. To my mind the excellent properties of the 31 are the out of focus areas ƒ2.4 or less and sharp corner to corner stopped down. But those really only matter if your images are such that you actually use those properties. If you are one of those guys who likes the sun flowers in the fore ground sharp with a blurry back ground in the approximate range of the 31 it could be a great lens for you. For me, I prefer those types of images taken with the Sigma 70 or DFA 100 macro, I like a tighter FoV for those images, so you might end up using the 31 more than you think, if you like what it's specializes at. And that type of image is clearly a thing with some shooters. It's what they dream about.

The DA 35 will give you relatively hurky jerky back ground and you may not like the image even if you have to crop the 31 to a 35 mm PoV, especially since that type of image usually doesn't depend on sharpness to make it effective, but for ƒ5.6 or ƒ8 corner to corner sharpness it's the "worth it" performer, if you have no OoF areas in your images.

Clearly, you can't take what you can't shoot, which is why I recommend covering the whole range you plan to shoot before buying any primes. My most used primes are the DFA 100 2.8 macro, DA*200 2.8 and Tamron 300 2.8 based on those preferences. I could have bought the 31 and 77 instead, but that would have cost a lot of quality in 40% of my images, and improved in maybe 1%. For most of us this is a real trade off. We can afford expensive lenses only for what they provide. I look at the 31, 77, FA*85 and I see immediately why people buy them. ( I actually prefer the 40 XS to the 43 for the last ltd.) But they are only a good deal if you use them. I admire the images, but I don't even try for that type of image, so more than likely they'd be wasted on any shooter who shoots like I shoot.


Last edited by normhead; 12-20-2017 at 10:05 AM.
12-20-2017, 09:57 AM - 1 Like   #39
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The 31mm is my absolute go to 'street' lens (on FF) - the 3D pop, speed, sharpness, rendering, robustness and light weight all come into their element on the street. I've never used it for straight landscape, and seldom even take it with me for that, as the 24-70 covers it and provides better edge to edge sharpness.

Here's a random (ie just posted toFlickr) example of it doing what it does so well

12-20-2017, 10:13 AM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by ffking Quote
The 31mm is my absolute go to 'street' lens (on FF) - the 3D pop, speed, sharpness, rendering, robustness and light weight all come into their element on the street. I've never used it for straight landscape, and seldom even take it with me for that, as the 24-70 covers it and provides better edge to edge sharpness.

Here's a random (ie just posted toFlickr) example of it doing what it does so well

A perfect example, looking back two years, I have not a single shot in that style. It can be great lens that takes unique images, and still be a lens I have no use for. I do have the 21 ltd for the K-3 if I wanted to go that route though.

Last edited by normhead; 12-20-2017 at 01:34 PM.
12-20-2017, 10:54 AM   #41
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Nobody has mentioned the DA 20-40 f2.8-f4 Limited zoom and obviously because no-one posting so far owns one.

I just got one and it is astonishing, equalling my DA 40 f2.8 Ltd, better than my K28 f3.5, K35 f3.5 etc. It is the lens to get if like me you are a landscape photographer who hikes his gear up mountains in all conditions. Wait a minute it is just a stonking good lens for many purposes, the most impressive I have ever owned, even more impressive than when I got the F* 300mm.

The Sigma 18-35??? Yuk no thanks having that monster lens to take landscape photos at f1.8... who does that? Maybe it is good for astro?

Remember the f64 club? 😉
12-20-2017, 11:35 AM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by r3nx Quote

What would you do?
Thanks!
I've been where you are now. I took the plunge and pulled the trigger on the FA 31mm and FA 77mm and have not been sorry in the least. My 31mm is one of my most favored lenses
and the end result photos are magnificent. Trust me, you wont be sorry. You may be poor for a while but that's another story .....
12-20-2017, 01:37 PM - 1 Like   #43
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Pretty clear from the responses, you're either a 31 ltd type guy or your not. That should be your decision maker right there.

If you shoot that focal length a lot, you'll love it. If you don't you won't.
12-20-2017, 01:42 PM - 2 Likes   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
A perfect example, looking back two years, I have not a single shot in that style. It can be great lens that takes unique images, and still be a lens I have no use for. I do have the 21 ltd for the K-3 if I wanted to go that route though.
I agree with this and respectfully disagree with the assertion that having the focal length is all that matters. I did not care to shoot wide when 18mm was rare before getting the DA 15. There is a bias that past performance predictable future to your logic that doesn't match my own experience. I do tend to find myself using focal lengths and lenses more if I like the lens. That can be size weight rendering ease of use etc. Simple field of view is a factor but there are times I will even challenge myself to try a new point of view and find I like it. So while I don't currently shoot at 400mm+ often - that might change if I had a 400mm lens again that I loved.

That said, analysis can help some people make this decision.

---------- Post added 12-20-17 at 03:46 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by nocturnal Quote
Nobody has mentioned the DA 20-40 f2.8-f4 Limited zoom and obviously because no-one posting so far owns one.

I just got one and it is astonishing, equalling my DA 40 f2.8 Ltd, better than my K28 f3.5, K35 f3.5 etc. It is the lens to get if like me you are a landscape photographer who hikes his gear up mountains in all conditions. Wait a minute it is just a stonking good lens for many purposes, the most impressive I have ever owned, even more impressive than when I got the F* 300mm.

The Sigma 18-35??? Yuk no thanks having that monster lens to take landscape photos at f1.8... who does that? Maybe it is good for astro?

Remember the f64 club? 😉
I own the FA 31, FA 35, DA 40 and the DA 20-40 as well as the DA* 16-50. They are all lovely
12-20-2017, 02:17 PM - 1 Like   #45
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If having a lens made me shoot a FL that I never shot before I had the lens, my folder labels would increment 3mm at a time

AFA whether to own an FA31, if you print for display or sale it will matter. IMO if you only display images at web resolution an FA35/2 is probably a better price:IQ choice.
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