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09-17-2018, 08:53 PM   #16
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The new DFA 50mm has a ring-type motor, not the old SDM motors, as I read here on PentaxForums.

10-09-2018, 04:44 AM   #17
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I guess I'm giving up to the idea to acquire the DA*.
Tested examples from Japan cost minimum 360/380 UDS, too much IMHO.
One was just sold from Israel, at $199. Good price, a pity it was tested on a K100D, so only with manual focus!
It was too much of a lottery, and given two strokes of bad luck I recently had, I thought to keep in mind an old italian saying: there is no two without three! Which means that if it already happened twice, it will likely happen one more time.
If I have to gamble, and I know I will, at least I want to do it for less expensive toys.
I have also considered buying a Samyang. I found almost no tests about this lens.
There are very little info about it. I don't even know if it's still made. Probably not, at least in PKA mount.
The only test/review I found gave a very positive evaluation of the optical qualities, somewhat better than the Sigma EX DG HSM. Which in turn should be a tad better than the Pentax DA* on full frame. From what I've read, both are kind of weak at the borders.
Considering I can't finance the purchase of the new D FA (which would be the easy choice, if money was no concern), I am still undecided about a more affordable alternative.
This is why I'm giving a bump to this thread. Maybe there is somebody who has tried at least a couple of the possible choices, and can express his/her impression.
Don't suggest to buy the FA, I already have one. I want a modern, high quality fifty, that can show very good sharpness wide open, at least in the center.
AF is definitely welcomed. I have read a few not so positive impressions about the Samyang 1.4/50mm, but the only proper test gave a different picture. I would have been inclined to buy it... if it wasn't for the manual focus.
I have plenty of 40mm > 58mm vintage optics. If I buy another one better go for AF... unless I find another Sammy for a very good price, and I am convinced that it has the best price/performance ratio by a large margin. I don't. Too little info.
I tried to do my homework first. I really couldn't find any reliable source that allows for a comparison of the different optics on full frame.
I came up with a conclusion, though. The possible alternatives to the new D FA are just four:
Pentax DA* 1.4/55mm
Sigma EX DG HSM 1.4/50mm
Samyang 1.4/50mm
Pentax Limited 1.9/43mm

The latter is slower, shorter, and not as sharp at the center of the frame.
It is also more expensive (second hand). Prices are coming down, though.
At first I didn't even consider it. Now I do, even if I am oriented towards another kind of lens. I have plenty of pixie dust from other optics...

Last edited by cyberjunkie; 10-09-2018 at 04:53 AM.
10-09-2018, 03:57 PM   #18
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Paolo, I'm using a Sigma 50mm f1.4 EX DG HSM in this month's Single In Challenge and it's amazing:

Sigma 50mm f1.4 EX DG HSM | Flickr

there is a natural beauty to its color and bokeh....
10-09-2018, 10:11 PM - 1 Like   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by pepperberry farm Quote
Paolo, I'm using a Sigma 50mm f1.4 EX DG HSM in this month's Single In Challenge and it's amazing:

Sigma 50mm f1.4 EX DG HSM | Flickr

there is a natural beauty to its color and bokeh....
I have seen...
Beautiful lens and great pictures

cheers
Paolo

10-10-2018, 10:45 AM - 1 Like   #20
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D FA 50 f2.8 is stunning from the tests I have seen side by side with the D FA 1.4 if you do not need the super shallow depth of field.
(And it is sharp wide open... LOL)
10-11-2018, 05:41 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
D FA 50 f2.8 is stunning from the tests I have seen side by side with the D FA 1.4 if you do not need the super shallow depth of field.
(And it is sharp wide open... LOL)
True. Even better than the 100mm. The MTF chart is impressive. It will outresolve the sensor for some time to come
I have the F version. Probably the sharpest lens I own. I'd love to have the clamp that is present on my FA 100mm cause working in manual is kind of a pain.

Service message:
If one of the pentaxians following this thread wants to buy a DA* 55mm, maybe better stay away from the example sold from Israel, with biddings starting at 199 USD.
It has been sold once, reappeared on Ebay, and the vendor says that it has been tested on a K100D. Only in manual!
When I asked if I could send back the lens if the AF was inoperative he backed off.
The fungus could be cleanable (but it could leave the glass etched, you can never be sure), but if the AF motor is kaputt, the expense would be high!

Last edited by cyberjunkie; 10-11-2018 at 06:02 AM.
10-11-2018, 07:10 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by cyberjunkie Quote
I could say exactly the same.
Accept I ignored the whole SDM thing realizing complaints were based on am extremely faulty data collection method, and own three excellent SDM lenses. As I said after 10 years of SDM use, I have no failures. Worrying about SDM would have had me using inferior lenses in every case, so, I don't see how my attitude is my loss. I guess if every one of my SDM lenses fails at some point my attitude would be my loss, but that's just speculation.

QuoteOriginally posted by LennyBloke Quote
In my opinion the D-FA*50/1.4 is a different class to any other "standard" focal length lens I have used. Other lenses have their own qualities and strengths, with the DA*55/1.4 probably being the closest to the new 50 overall, but for the aspects that are important to me my gamble on such a large, heavy & expensive lens have really paid off.

Sharpness at maximum aperture is excellent. Bokeh is simply gorgeous. AF accuracy is the best I've seen.

I will be selling my K50/1.2, Voigtlander 58/1.4 and F50/1.4 shortly (I'll keep the FA 43/1.9 for travel/compactness) - all with a tinge of sadness I suspect - but I haven't used any of them since the D-FA* purchase.

If you are teetering on the edge of buying I would use those three letters....

...J.D.I. ! (Just Do It )
Ya, that.


I had an opportunity to get a DA*55 1.4 for $500 CAD. I lookedat the comparison on the forum, noticed the DFA 50 was better, but didn't think it was $800 better, the price difference here in Canada. If itI was an absolute test, as in "I want the absolute best." I would have bought the DFA 50. All kinds of people and sites have called it best in class, bar none.

I went for "best value in class". I simply cannot believe the difference between my FA 50 1.7, My SMC 50 1.4, and my FA 50 macro and DA&55 1.4. To me the DA*55 is such a step up, I may never decide to take the next step. But as I said, I'm not an absolutist. For almost every lens I own, there's better out there, somewhere. The DFA 50 1.4 gives Pentax users with the ability to pay top dollar the ability to own a lens that is "the best out there." That's been missing for a while in Pentax land. It looks like this generation's 31 ltd, and I'm guessing the DFA 85 1.4 will be this generation's 77 ltd.

Last edited by normhead; 10-11-2018 at 07:15 AM.
10-11-2018, 08:24 AM - 1 Like   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by LennyBloke Quote
In my opinion the D-FA*50/1.4 is a different class to any other "standard" focal length lens I have used. Other lenses have their own qualities and strengths, with the DA*55/1.4 probably being the closest to the new 50 overall, but for the aspects that are important to me my gamble on such a large, heavy & expensive lens have really paid off.

Sharpness at maximum aperture is excellent. Bokeh is simply gorgeous. AF accuracy is the best I've seen.

I will be selling my K50/1.2, Voigtlander 58/1.4 and F50/1.4 shortly (I'll keep the FA 43/1.9 for travel/compactness) - all with a tinge of sadness I suspect - but I haven't used any of them since the D-FA* purchase.

If you are teetering on the edge of buying I would use those three letters....

...J.D.I. ! (Just Do It )
Where are you at on selling the K 50 1.2? I might be interested...

10-11-2018, 11:36 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by pres589 Quote
Where are you at on selling the K 50 1.2? I might be interested...
Sorry - I only sell in the UK I didn't mean this post to be an advert - Mods, don't spank me please
10-11-2018, 11:44 AM   #25
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Hey, no problem. I've started idly watching for a good deal on a good copy of either the K or A 50 1.2. That extra bit of light would be useful now and then when shooting on film. Good luck whenever you do sell the lens.
10-12-2018, 06:20 AM   #26
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What do you consider a decent new/used price for a 50mm lens with given specs?

The D-FA* 50 costs as much as it is wortt, it is not expensive. Same for the DA*50...
10-12-2018, 07:38 AM - 1 Like   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by zapp Quote
What do you consider a decent new/used price for a 50mm lens with given specs?

The D-FA* 50 costs as much as it is wortt, it is not expensive. Same for the DA*50...
The only issue for some, is not what it's worth, but if they can afford to pay it.
10-12-2018, 02:45 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by zapp Quote
What do you consider a decent new/used price for a 50mm lens with given specs?

The D-FA* 50 costs as much as it is wortt, it is not expensive. Same for the DA*50...
This is a circular argument - it is objectively true that the market price is not just based on the quality in a head to head competition. Brand, expectation of results, rarity etc all drive price.
10-12-2018, 11:02 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
The only issue for some, is not what it's worth, but if they can afford to pay it.
I guess this is true for ALMOST everyone.
How many people can afford a Sinar, a couple of digital backs, and a few modern apo objectives?
Not talking only about amateurs, very few professionals have the kind of income that could justify such expenses.
Even if money is no concern, chasing the absolute best, the magic bullet, the no-compromise definitive [placeholder for whatever we crave], well... I guess it is just an illusion. There will be a new absolute best soon, but first we have to agree on what the absolute best is. In the end it comes to personal habits, goals and tastes. So the absolute is not really absolute, it's relative

10-13-2018, 05:56 AM   #30
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It's only an illusion in a theoretical sense. And for every single person, there's an absolute best for their use. There may be better technically, but if it comes with drawbacks, like the manual focus of Ziess lenses, then it might not be the best for you. And it's definitely possible to decide what would be the absolute best for you.
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