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05-15-2019, 03:22 AM   #1
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16-85mm vs 28-105mm on APS-C

Hi all,

I tried 16-85 on my K-3 few months ago and was a little disapointed by its edge performance.
I wondering if 28-105 would perform better on APS-C in regards to edges?
Does anyone here have compared 16-85mm and 28-105mm on a K-3 or KP and have comparison shots?

Thank you.

05-15-2019, 04:18 AM - 1 Like   #2
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Cant help you as I don't have any of those lenses, but these two tests suggest the edge performance of both lenses to be good (except the 28-105 at 105). Also worth noting the 28-105 was tested on the K1 so should be even better edge performance on aps-c.

But the difference between 16 and 28 mm as the minimum FL is huge. That will be a big gap to fill if you do change lenses.

HD Pentax-DA 16-85mm F3.5-5.6 ED DC WR Review | ePHOTOzine

HD Pentax-D FA 28-105mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR Lens Review | ePHOTOzine
05-15-2019, 04:23 AM   #3
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Can you show us an example? The 16-85 has decent edge performance for a zoom. As always, edges get better stopped down. Are you certain what you are seeing is poor edges and not just OOF rendering?

In a zoom, a good bet for edge performance is the Sigma 17-50 with a 50-135 on the long end.

If you want really great edge performance, you’ll may want to consider a premium prime. The da35 Ltd and FA31 stopped down have quite good edges. The 50 macro and 100 macro have amazing edges. The new 11-18 appears to have pretty good edges too, especially for a zoom but I haven’t used it yet. There are others.

Use a tripod, stop down to f8 at iso100 helps quite a lot too.
05-15-2019, 04:50 AM - 1 Like   #4
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I have both lenses and a K-3. Of the two, I consider the 16-85 the better lens. Of course I use the 28-105 on my K-1ii predominantly since it covers FF. There is some sample variation with lenses and the one 16-85 you tried may have been flawed. I wouldn’t find the 28-105 that useful on a crop sensor body for reasons mentioned above. Edge performance at wide angle is always problematic but the 16-85 is very good. The only thing I don’t like about the 16-85 is that I use my DA limited primes (15,21,40,70) less after buying the zoom :-(.

05-15-2019, 04:54 AM - 1 Like   #5
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The DFA28-105 is stellar on crop. I use it on the KP at least as much as I do on the K-1.

That said, it sucks at 16mm. But it kills the 16-85 at 105mm
05-15-2019, 04:55 AM   #6
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Having used the 16-85 on APS-C for a long while (and in crop mode on full frame for about 18 months), I find very little to criticize with it. The 28-105 is mostly similar, I guess you could see some edge improvement but really, not enough to talk about it. If your 16-85 leaves you wondering, it might be that you have a bad copy.
05-15-2019, 05:06 AM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentax Syntax Quote
The only thing I don’t like about the 16-85 is that I use my DA limited primes (15,21,40,70) less after buying the zoom :-(.
Same exact thing happened to me on my K-3
05-15-2019, 07:15 AM - 4 Likes   #8
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I often look at the edge or corners of a photo and say to myself "How could they possibly be happy with using such a terrible lens".

05-15-2019, 07:40 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by pschlute Quote
Cant help you as I don't have any of those lenses, but these two tests suggest the edge performance of both lenses to be good (except the 28-105 at 105). Also worth noting the 28-105 was tested on the K1 so should be even better edge performance on aps-c.

But the difference between 16 and 28 mm as the minimum FL is huge. That will be a big gap to fill if you do change lenses.

HD Pentax-DA 16-85mm F3.5-5.6 ED DC WR Review | ePHOTOzine

HD Pentax-D FA 28-105mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR Lens Review | ePHOTOzine
I read those review too, but I find ePHOTOzine give very good score to all the lenses... For example, there are many lenses with 4.5 stars with crappy IQ in the samples. Moreover result is often very different in the field than on the review bench.

In regards to the gap between 16 and 28, it doesn't matter as long as the IQ is great. At the moment, I have a big gap between my 11-18 and the 50/1.8... and I am looking for a zoom, or a prime between 18 and 50 with excellent edge performances.

---------- Post added 15-05-19 at 16:51 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Kozlok Quote
Can you show us an example? The 16-85 has decent edge performance for a zoom. As always, edges get better stopped down. Are you certain what you are seeing is poor edges and not just OOF rendering?

In a zoom, a good bet for edge performance is the Sigma 17-50 with a 50-135 on the long end.

If you want really great edge performance, you’ll may want to consider a premium prime. The da35 Ltd and FA31 stopped down have quite good edges. The 50 macro and 100 macro have amazing edges. The new 11-18 appears to have pretty good edges too, especially for a zoom but I haven’t used it yet. There are others.

Use a tripod, stop down to f8 at iso100 helps quite a lot too.
I will look for an example when I get home.

I tested many lenses to fill my gap between 18 and 50mm, and I look for a lens with similar performance than my current lenses (11-18, 50/1.8 and 70mm Ltd).

I tested: 20-40 Ltd (2 copies), 35/2.4 (bad copy maybe?), 16-85mm, sigma 17-70 (decentered), sigma 18-35 (3 copies), 40 Ltd, 35 Macro Ltd, Tamron 17-50. The lens with better performance was the Sigma 18-35 (really stellar), but all of the 3 copies I tried had a different problem...

I also tested prime such as 40 Ltd and 35 Ltd. Those lenses were good in daylight, but for night cityscapes, the focus accuracy was very poor and most of my photos were out of focus (even in LiveView).

Samples of the 28-105 looks good on ephotozine.com, but I am a little tired to purchase and send back lenses...

---------- Post added 15-05-19 at 16:52 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Pentax Syntax Quote
I have both lenses and a K-3. Of the two, I consider the 16-85 the better lens. Of course I use the 28-105 on my K-1ii predominantly since it covers FF. There is some sample variation with lenses and the one 16-85 you tried may have been flawed. I wouldn’t find the 28-105 that useful on a crop sensor body for reasons mentioned above. Edge performance at wide angle is always problematic but the 16-85 is very good. The only thing I don’t like about the 16-85 is that I use my DA limited primes (15,21,40,70) less after buying the zoom :-(.
Sure, may be I had a bad copy, I tried only one copy and I would not have ranked my copy 4 or 4.5 stars.

---------- Post added 15-05-19 at 16:53 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
The DFA28-105 is stellar on crop. I use it on the KP at least as much as I do on the K-1.

That said, it sucks at 16mm. But it kills the 16-85 at 105mm
Thanks and lol. Any chance you got landscape samples around 28mm and 35mm f/8 with your 28-105?

---------- Post added 15-05-19 at 16:57 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
The DFA28-105 is stellar on crop. I use it on the KP at least as much as I do on the K-1.

That said, it sucks at 16mm. But it kills the 16-85 at 105mm
I will upload few samples when I got home, and ask here if the IQ is normal or not. May be I am asking to much for a 600€ lens.
05-15-2019, 08:14 AM   #10
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Poor corner IQ with the 16-85 ist most likely due to decentering. I have returned two copies of it for this reason. The third copy has good IQ in the corners, even though you can see hints of decentering.

Rather than resorting to a significantly larger and heavier FF lens as redemdy I'd suggest to go for another copy of the 16-85 or an APS-C alternative like the 16-50.
05-15-2019, 10:17 AM - 1 Like   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Snafu711 Quote
Rather than resorting to a significantly larger and heavier FF lens
Just a tidbit of info. The 28-105 is smaller and lighter than the 16-85...
05-15-2019, 10:50 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
Just a tidbit of info. The 28-105 is smaller and lighter than the 16-85...
You‘re right! I had the 24-70 in mind. Thanks for the info!
05-15-2019, 02:50 PM - 2 Likes   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdave Quote
Any chance you got landscape samples around 28mm and 35mm f/8 with your 28-105?






05-15-2019, 05:38 PM - 1 Like   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdave Quote

I tested many lenses to fill my gap between 18 and 50mm, and I look for a lens with similar performance than my current lenses (11-18, 50/1.8 and 70mm Ltd).

I'm afraid you won't find much to make you happy between these. The FA31 is a bit sharper than the 35 Limited in the corners, and stopped down, that is probably the best that is possible in middle focal lengths. The only other option is to shoot panoramas and crop so the entire frame of the image was taken from the center of the lens.

Here are the 31 and the 16-85 side-by-side, at f8, on a tripod. The 31 is better, not by an earth shattering amount.




I think the 31 ended up focused slightly further away, since the close bush and handrail on the right is a bit blurry; I think that's entirely because of bokeh, my lens isn't decentered. The distant objects on the 16-85's edges are slightly burry, so again, I think it's not focused quite at infinity. If you really want corner sharpness, there is some element of technique that comes into play as well.


EDIT: I have also posted the other photos I shot around the same focal length, the Sigma 17-70 (first version), the Sigma 30/1.4, The 18-135, the 16-50, and the old, venerable 18-55. Feel free to download full res copies and take a look if any of this makes a difference in your decision process.

What I really learned is I need to be more precise in focusing when doing these comparisons. The 18-55 and 18-135 are the only ones with moderately weak-ish borders. The 30/1.4 has abysmal borders for a fast prime, the others are at least in the same league.

Last edited by Kozlok; 05-15-2019 at 05:52 PM.
05-15-2019, 08:51 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kozlok Quote
Here are the 31 and the 16-85 side-by-side, at f8, on a tripod. The 31 is better, not by an earth shattering amount.
Not earth-shattering? I'd say it's a pretty dramatic difference in detail, colour rendition and contrast. Without looking too closely, I'd say the 16-85 image is the worst from the five Pentax lenses, and on par with the two Sigmas.
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