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09-18-2018, 07:09 PM   #1
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FA 20-35 unobtanium ....Not sure what to expect from Promaster 19-35 alternative lens

Ive been looking for quite a while for the FA 20-35 lens , but seem to get passed by on any that come available one way or another. Im either broke.....late.....or the price is just too high.
Tonight I have been watching a Goodwill auction that had a Promaster Spectrum 7 MC 19-35mm lens and managed to get it at less than $48 including some other crap listed in the auction.
https://www.shopgoodwill.com/Item/57465688
Im kinda excited to get it , but don't want to get my hopes up that it will even come close to the Unobtanium FA 20-35 lens I really want.
Has anyone used this lens recently ? There is only 4 reviews for it in the lens section and it actually doesn't look too horrible at all from the scant reviews here.
Mine is the 77mm filter size.....I have no idea if a filter/hood might be hidden in the bag , and what to use for a hood if there isn't ?
I also have no idea the production history is on this lens as far as a manufacturer ?
Any help is appreciated....Thanks.

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Last edited by Ronald Oakes; 09-18-2018 at 07:21 PM.
09-18-2018, 07:35 PM - 1 Like   #2
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I have not used that particular lens. But you might look at the user reviews on it. They seem pretty positive.

Promaster 19-35mm f/3.5-4.5 Spectrum 7 Lens Reviews - Miscellaneous Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database
09-18-2018, 07:59 PM - 1 Like   #3
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I had the Vivitar version of this lens back in my film days and concur that it's a nice UWA zoom. But I've not used it on digital.

I hope you enjoy it!
09-19-2018, 01:42 AM - 1 Like   #4
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I suspect it is a Tokina like this one

Tokina AF 19-35mm f/3.5-4.5 (193) Lens Reviews - Tokina Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

The Tokina is very good

09-19-2018, 03:42 AM - 2 Likes   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by david94903 Quote
I have not used that particular lens. But you might look at the user reviews on it. They seem pretty positive.

Promaster 19-35mm f/3.5-4.5 Spectrum 7 Lens Reviews - Miscellaneous Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database
I used the DA12-24 / 4 on apsc, for K1 I bought a brand new Promaster Spectrum 7 19-35 / 3.5-4.5 and paid about $ 90 (all in total with shipping from America to Europe + customs + tax) , nice small and optically decent, but unparalleled with DA12-24 / 4 except price, mainly: good - overall better than the average lens , contrast surprisingly beautiful (and without original plastic hood which in the package), flare can be a problem, focusing on K1 is excellent, satisfying sharpness - especially center, loss of sharpness to the edges, for these money there is no better choice, provides / gives far more than it costs and my recommendation for that money, Tokina and other models I did not use, I hope this will help at least a little
09-19-2018, 05:46 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by mbukal Quote
I used the DA12-24 / 4 on apsc, for K1 I bought a brand new Promaster Spectrum 7 19-35 / 3.5-4.5 and paid about $ 90 (all in total with shipping from America to Europe + customs + tax) , nice small and optically decent, but unparalleled with DA12-24 / 4 except price, mainly: good - overall better than the average lens , contrast surprisingly beautiful (and without original plastic hood which in the package), flare can be a problem, focusing on K1 is excellent, satisfying sharpness - especially center, loss of sharpness to the edges, for these money there is no better choice, provides / gives far more than it costs and my recommendation for that money, Tokina and other models I did not use, I hope this will help at least a little
How well does the DA 12-24 compare on the K-1? I've heard it is pretty good at 20mm -24mm, can you compare this to the same range on the 19-35?
09-19-2018, 06:03 AM   #7
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The lens is a Cosina (ALSO branded as a Promaster or Vivitar) 19-35mm 3.5-4.5 all plastic with a nice chrome lens mount , bayonet lens hood also was included, this lens and the 100mm 3.5 macro (also branded as Pentax) made Cosina's reputation as a lens maker, The Tokina 19-35mm f3.5-4.5 was their own, and was an update on the 20-35mm 3.5-4.5, a 20-35mm 2.8 was also available as a higher cost option, but most test showed it had inferior corner resolution to the cheaper option, both lens are a good bet for the price, I have no idea about the quality of the Promaster version.
09-19-2018, 09:00 AM - 1 Like   #8
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I've had the DA12-24 and a version of this I think, the non-2.8-tokina (with worse performance), so essentially I had this lens I guess. (edit/clarification: the 2.8 is said to be worse, I had the same F-range as this)

The DA12-24 can barely be beaten by primes even, and then maybe in just a couple measurable metrics (I would argue it "should" have been a * if not for not being a (pure?) pentax design and WR..or maybe my copy was just better than average), but I agree that the 19-35 was no slouch either. I think that where the da covers the frame, its a bit sharper with less (no? =) ) abberations, stack of primes basically, except for possibly the corners on ff then where depending on FL the 19-35 could beat it when it runs out of glass. But then again its a quite different focal length so it depends on what you need, the DA is almost a prime on FF 20-24, while the 19-35 is a lot more useful range IMO.

That said, I was after "endgame performance" (which for me is the da) in a wide-midangle zoom on FF, so I sold the DA, and wasn't quite satisfied and sold the 19-35 as well. But turns out my kind of zoom doesn't exist for pentax ff yet, so I got the daf 24-70 as a compromise, won't complain at all as long as I don't pixelpeep, but for me the price is almost *-money, for not quite *-lens..but oh well..I'll manage =)

09-19-2018, 11:16 AM - 1 Like   #9
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I have played with my friend's Vivitar version of Promaster 19-35mm f/3.5-4.5 on K1, and is a decent lens: quite sharp in the frame center and less so and with significant chromatic aberrations towards the edges. It's certainly not on par with my copy of FA 20-35/4 in sharpness, but it also flares more and has less contrast.
Too bad Ricoh chose to outsource lenses to Tamron etc. when they could at least reissue compact and field oriented, Asahi era gems like FA 20-35/4.
09-19-2018, 11:49 AM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by mirocal Quote
Too bad Ricoh chose to outsource lenses to Tamron etc. when they could at least reissue compact and field oriented, Asahi era gems like FA 20-35/4.
I have wondered the same thing myself. Some say that the golden oldies would not do well when subjected to the scrutiny of modern era pixel peepers.
09-19-2018, 12:11 PM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
How well does the DA 12-24 compare on the K-1? I've heard it is pretty good at 20mm -24mm, can you compare this to the same range on the 19-35?


Unfortunately, no, I sold everything from apsc to finance ff

the DA12-24/4 on the apsc (Kx/r/30/5/3) as was the prime to optical quality (not really in size), but Igor123 was realistic compared to DA12-24/4 and PM7 19-35/3.5-4.5 on the ff

Last edited by mbukal; 09-19-2018 at 12:34 PM.
09-19-2018, 08:09 PM   #12
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Thanks for all the replies.
It sounds as if "maybe" this will work out ?
I get the lens Friday afternoon and will begin seeing for myself. However I don't have the FA 20-35 to compare it to , so I will probably settle for far less than perfect.
At least I have a zoom that is in my most used focal range now for the K-1.
Keeping my fingers crossed also for a hood in the bag somewhere......lol.
09-19-2018, 08:34 PM - 1 Like   #13
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At $48 you can't go wrong. As long as no one abused the lens and damaged the optics, I think you got a good lens for a very very good price.
09-19-2018, 09:41 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by david94903 Quote
At $48 you can't go wrong. As long as no one abused the lens and damaged the optics, I think you got a good lens for a very very good price.
Thanks...…..and I guess I also got some other Sigma lens that I haven't even looked up.... and a film camera too ! I figure that should be worth about $10-20 bucks at my garage Sale next week
Im hoping against all odds there is a hood somewhere. I think for this lens its going to be imperative for decent images.
09-19-2018, 10:23 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ronald Oakes Quote
Im hoping against all odds there is a hood somewhere. I think for this lens its going to be imperative for decent images.
Some duct tape and black card stock, and a little DYI and you'll be off to the races, ha!
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