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04-15-2018, 01:19 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
That said, there is a difference between critically sharp and sharp enough.
Any shot looks sharp if you downsize it to 2048 pixels ...

04-15-2018, 01:47 AM - 1 Like   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by kh1234567890 Quote
Any shot looks sharp if you downsize it to 2048 pixels ...
Thanks for that incisive (but inaccurate) comment. I downsize all my web images to that size for convenience.

I did mention that two of them are printed to A3, and I'm sure they would look fine considerably larger.
04-15-2018, 02:07 AM   #18
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Some architecture shots from a lens not really suitable for architecture. They were all done on the same trip to Prague back in 2013, where my DA15 was basically the only wideangle option I had in the bag.

Okay, I get it: all of the attached are more "intimate" architecture utilizing foreground interest, and therefore likely benefiting from the field curvature. And not everybody will like the keystoning effect, which I tend to be less bothered about in my line of shooting.

However, I find it hard to fault the lens for unacceptable corner sharpness in any of these images, nor does the residual barrel distortion give me major concerns (to the point where, actually, I will often leave it uncorrected in post and prioritize original framing).

For those inclined to full-res pixel-peeping: https://needacreate.smugmug.com/Prague-2013/i-C8W8hsR
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Last edited by Madaboutpix; 04-15-2018 at 02:13 AM.
04-15-2018, 05:26 AM   #19
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I think the DA14/2.8 is the more usable one for architecture.

Seb



04-15-2018, 06:27 AM - 3 Likes   #20
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I have the Sigma 8–16. It has corners that are better than the 15. It doesn’t like the sun in the frame, though. That’s kind of a problem with how wide it is.

The 15 does what it does. As other have said, it’s not really a general purpose prime. I find I take my best photos with the 15, blurry corners and all.
04-15-2018, 06:57 AM   #21
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I have the exact same issue with my 10-20mm Sigma (old - 4-5.6.) It's not consistent. Sometimes the edges are okay, sometimes the edges are just horrible - particularly with more distant subjects. When I get those blurry edges, sometimes I think I want the 8-16... but then I think about not having a filter. I sometimes use a polarizer on wide lenses for foliage and water, or a UV because I'm out in the rain a lot and need to wipe off the front between every shot. And most of all I use a split ND for sunrises and sunsets. I don't need the cost or weight of a faster lens (I usually use it around f11.) Even when the 11-18 arrives there won't be a better affordable (relatively) compact wide zoom for Pentax that accepts traditional filters.
04-15-2018, 09:01 AM   #22
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I'm really surprised to see as much love for the SMCP-DA 14/2.8. I've never felt it was up to my expectation towards the edges and corners, really needed to be stopped down to at least f8, and my copy made a trip to Pentax in Japan to get serviced for decentering, which improved it greatly, but never got it to what I had hoped. I think the test shots in the review here on PF are typical for this lens:

Pentax 14mm F2.8 vs Rokinon 14mm F2.8 Review - Sharpness | PentaxForums.com Reviews

I'd be looking at the Rokinon if doing it all over, and as is, have been tempted to grab one anyway.

Also, unless I'm missing something, other than an edge in only border sharpness at f4 and f5.6, these reports referenced earlier show the DA15 to be sharper than the DA14



Pentax SMC-DA 15mm f/4 AL ED Limited - Review / Test Report - Analysis









Pentax SMC-DA 14mm f/2.8 ED [IF] - Review / Test Report - Analysis






I know it's getting large again, but I've always been surprised at how well my DA* 16-50 does at 16.

I'm really looking forward to the upcoming DA* 11-18.




Last edited by clickclick; 04-15-2018 at 09:10 AM.
04-15-2018, 09:10 AM   #23
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Agreed, surprised by the love for the DA 14. I don't think it's some horrible lens, it's just... really overshadowed by the Sy 14. Lose AF, gain everywhere else, including FF coverage.

I now have both an Sy 14 and a DA 15 on my shelf. The DA 15 isn't making it out as often but it still very much has its place. If I was back in what I'd consider an urban environment again I would be using it a lot more.

04-15-2018, 11:37 AM   #24
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The DA14 is not a perfect lens, but it really shines indoors in certain situations.
Outdoors on a sunny day I'm sure there are better alternatives.

Seb
04-15-2018, 01:20 PM - 1 Like   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by Madaboutpix Quote
Some architecture shots from a lens not really suitable for architecture. They were all done on the same trip to Prague back in 2013, where my DA15 was basically the only wideangle option I had in the bag.
Those look very nice! Mine do not consistently look that good. You are however using a K-7 rather than a K-3 II, I'm not sure how big a difference that makes. Looking around the internet for full size 24mp samples I've found that quite a few suffer from soft corners.

This is how bad mine can be. This is one of my worst though and just a test image. 100% crops on central vertical axis center and top. The crops are of the same facade the center bit is in a bit of a recess but not f/9 kind of recess.


Full res image can be found here

Another test image at f/8 handheld of some buildings about to get demolished.


Full res image here

Due to the depth of field required for the latter photo I don't expect tack sharp across the frame but f/8 @ 15mm should be workable. The same type of 3/4 view with the da 35 al looks quite nice at f/8 despite the longer fl. Heck I've done very compressed oblique corner views of 100m buildings with 50mm lenses at f9 without suffering much because of shallow dof.


A better sample might look like this. Still a test but a proper photo with PP and corrections.


2048xp version here

Last edited by house; 04-15-2018 at 01:50 PM. Reason: a good sample
04-15-2018, 02:21 PM - 1 Like   #26
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Surely what matters is what the whole picture looks like. Pixel peeping the corners is not a valid real-world test for most of the images people want.
04-15-2018, 02:33 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
Surely what matters is what the whole picture looks like. Pixel peeping the corners is not a valid real-world test for most of the images people want.
Download the first one and you'll see that it affects the pictures at almost any resolution.

Having to downsample to 1/4 isn't good enough.
04-15-2018, 02:37 PM   #28
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Actually, I would have to say, I am a big fan of the DA 14mm 2.8....does everything I want it to
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04-15-2018, 02:45 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
Surely what matters is what the whole picture looks like. Pixel peeping the corners is not a valid real-world test for most of the images people want.
To quote the OP :
QuoteOriginally posted by house Quote
I shoot buildings and spaces.
For some shots, especially those of modern architecture with its strong lines, corner fuzziness can be distracting.

Shots like this one (taken with the DA16-45) :




For me the DA15 is far too unpredictable in these cases and does not suit my see-point-shoot-moveon style of photography.

Each to their own, I suppose.
04-16-2018, 09:00 AM - 1 Like   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by house Quote
Those look very nice! Mine do not consistently look that good. You are however using a K-7 rather than a K-3 II, I'm not sure how big a difference that makes. Looking around the internet for full size 24mp samples I've found that quite a few suffer from soft corners.

Oh, thank you for your praise, house. Since 2014, my DA15 has also seen a fair amount of use on my K-3. If anything, the lens does even seem to fare slightly better on the 24MP sensor, possibly because it can play out more of its centre sharpness and rendering characteristics. Here's a selection of shots from North Holland taken with that combo (https://needacreate.smugmug.com/Noord-Holland-Amsterdam/i-HH2RqX7). Corner sharpness altogether decent for this type of lens, I'd say. To be fair, I know perfectly well there're sub-par copies out there, and even what I take to be a good copy of the DA15 has occasionally proved a quirky beast in my hands (perhaps more so with distant corner detail?). My shots were processed to taste in DxO PhotoLab, which has an option for offsetting corner softness, but I tend to be fairly subtle in my post-processing approach. I can only say that I have been mostly pleased with the output of my DA15, in fact, more than with any other wideangle I've owned, but other people's mileage will vary.

Does this mean I wouldn't want to add the upcoming DA★11-18 to my kit if I could afford one? Certainly not.
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