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11-29-2019, 06:46 AM   #1
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Price aside, Pentax-D FA* 50mm f1.4 or Pentax-FA 77mm F1.8 Limited?

Without intention to fire up a debate, I'm wondering what other forum members (specially those more experienced who might have been able to try both) would pick if you had to decide between HD Pentax-D FA* 50mm F1.4 SDM AW or SMC Pentax-FA 77mm F1.8 Limited? Let's leave price aside for a moment.

I currently have a few SMC M which I use on the K-1 from time to time, but my main lens on it is the HD Pentax-D FA 24-70mm F2.8 ED SDM WR. I find it a bit too big and heavy to carry around all day, so when I started looking at the 50mm (which seems amazing, not going to argue) the weight made me think I might not get it out as much. So, looking for alternatives I "stumbled" upon the 77mm. I'm trying to find a local dealer that carries Pentax lenses so I can go look at it and get a real feel for the size and weight, but at 123 gr. heavier than the 24-70mm I fear I might find it too heavy. It is worth noting I don't carry a bag or backpack with me, usually just the body (K-1) with the one lens I picked for the day.

Thougthts? I know they are different focal lengths (I'm OK with both), but are they comparable in terms of image rendition, sharpness, etc.? Note that while I also own some Pentax film cameras, I do not really mean for this new prime to go on those, so that's not really a problem when looking at the FA* 50mm f1.4.

It'd be great if you are able to clarify if you actually tried both lenses or not when you give your thoughts!

Thanks!

11-29-2019, 07:18 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by miguelfenoglio Quote
Without intention to fire up a debate, I'm wondering what other forum members (specially those more experienced who might have been able to try both) would pick if you had to decide between HD Pentax-D FA* 50mm F1.4 SDM AW or SMC Pentax-FA 77mm F1.8 Limited? Let's leave price aside for a moment.

I currently have a few SMC M which I use on the K-1 from time to time, but my main lens on it is the HD Pentax-D FA 24-70mm F2.8 ED SDM WR. I find it a bit too big and heavy to carry around all day, so when I started looking at the 50mm (which seems amazing, not going to argue) the weight made me think I might not get it out as much. So, looking for alternatives I "stumbled" upon the 77mm. I'm trying to find a local dealer that carries Pentax lenses so I can go look at it and get a real feel for the size and weight, but at 123 gr. heavier than the 24-70mm I fear I might find it too heavy. It is worth noting I don't carry a bag or backpack with me, usually just the body (K-1) with the one lens I picked for the day.

Thougthts? I know they are different focal lengths (I'm OK with both), but are they comparable in terms of image rendition, sharpness, etc.? Note that while I also own some Pentax film cameras, I do not really mean for this new prime to go on those, so that's not really a problem when looking at the FA* 50mm f1.4.

It'd be great if you are able to clarify if you actually tried both lenses or not when you give your thoughts!

Thanks!
You also need to tell us what kind of subjects you shoot.
11-29-2019, 07:21 AM - 2 Likes   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by miguelfenoglio Quote
my main lens on it is the HD Pentax-D FA 24-70mm F2.8 ED SDM WR. I find it a bit too big and heavy to carry around all day
If the size of the DFA2470 is too much and you'r not fixed about the focal length (50 or 77 is not the same...) , then the DFA28-105 is the right choice for you.
11-29-2019, 08:22 AM   #4
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I'm in the market for that 77mm. I just need to make a couple more payment to get my KP paid off, then I will grab the lens.

11-29-2019, 09:03 AM   #5
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Both. The 50 because it is great and Pentax missed to release an 85. The 77 because the focal length and the performance are great for portrait and because Pentax missed to release an 85.

In size the 77 wins, but af is loud and slow. Not weather sealed and mine collected dust inside quickly. Bokeh is smoother than for dfa 50. If you have to decide today and size matters, go for the 77. My feeling is that the 85 will be great but big enough to scare models from time to time.
11-29-2019, 09:10 AM   #6
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I have both lenses and they are both excellent - if the weight is an issue then the FA77 Limited is the one to go for, you can leave it on the camera being carried around all day and you'll hardly notice it. The DFA*50/1.4 on the other hand is bulkier and much heavier, it is quite noticeable after a while.
If you're looking for the best IQ, sharpness and Bokeh then the DFA*50/1.4 is the winner (IMO) - but for many shots you won't notice a difference between the 2.

There are other considerations - Weather Resistance, silent and accurate SDM focus, improved lens coatings - the 50 has the advantages there, but they may not be important to your style of shooting - To be honest I doubt you'd be disappointed with either lens! Make your choice and enjoy the results
11-29-2019, 10:22 AM   #7
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The 50 is a much newer design than the 77. On that basis, it should be better. Unfortunately I have no experience of either of them. What I do know, is that the two focal lengths are very different. The 50 will be better suited for some shots than the 77, and vice versa.

If it was my money, I would go for the modernity that the 50 brings t the party.
11-29-2019, 10:36 AM - 1 Like   #8
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buy them both, test each for a month in the Single In Challenge, sell the one you don't like...

11-29-2019, 10:46 AM - 1 Like   #9
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The K-1 has enough megapixels that you could shoot with the 50 and crop the image to a 77 field of view if desired.
11-29-2019, 11:04 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by miguelfenoglio Quote
I'm wondering what other forum members (specially those more experienced who might have been able to try both) would pick if you had to decide between HD Pentax-D FA* 50mm F1.4 SDM AW or SMC Pentax-FA 77mm F1.8 Limited?
Knowing what kind of photography you will be doing with the lens will help give better advice. I own the 77, and tested both lenses extensively when writing the reviews here at Pentaxforums. You can read, in detail, my evaluation of the two lenses there.

Modern 50mm Shootout: Pentax D FA* 50mm, Samyang 50mm, Pentax DA* 55mm F1.4 Review - Introduction | PentaxForums.com Reviews

SMC Pentax-FA 77mm F1.8 Limited Review - Introduction | PentaxForums.com Reviews

I'm not a fan of 50mm myself, so I did not keep the 50. I do own and use frequently the 77.
11-29-2019, 11:40 AM   #11
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DA*55 and DA 70 also seem worth considering.
11-29-2019, 12:44 PM - 1 Like   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by kevinWE Quote
I'm in the market for that 77mm. I just need to make a couple more payment to get my KP paid off, then I will grab the lens.
The 77mm limited is as good as ANY lens I've ever seen. Great for you if you can get one . It is compact and beautifully made. Perfect images. ....Most would agree!.....RJM
11-29-2019, 04:29 PM   #13
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I've had my FA 77 LTD for over 13 years. I bought it while still shooting only film. A great lens, I love mine. Built-in retractable lens hood. Great for portraits, closeups, and much more. Good for candid shots at a gathering, because it is so small and unobtrusive people don't notice it. Same for street shots. I've never found its AF to be slow at all. In fact, a good screw-driven lens can often be faster for AF than an SDM lens. They make some noise but not especially loud on my FA 77mm. The issues between these two lenses are- weight, size, WR, and of course mainly the different focal length for its uses. The difference in price may be such that you could buy both the FA 43mm- a fine walk-around prime lens for a FF body and a more versatile FL than 50mm, AND the FA 77mm Limiteds for around the same or less than the DFA 50mm lens.

I also additionally highly recommend the excellent-performing FA HD 35mm f/2 as a very versatile walk-around lightweight lens. Sharp even wide open, and fine edge-to-edge performance. These three are my favorite primes lenses for FF use.

Last edited by mikesbike; 11-29-2019 at 04:41 PM.
11-29-2019, 05:43 PM - 4 Likes   #14
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The 43 and 77 for the price of the 50 (as per Mikes point above) is worth considering........ hunt around second hand and you'd almost get a 31 as well..... (I'm rounding things up here like when I explain photographic desires to my wife..... ).

also.... you are not fond of the bulk of a zoom but are considering a bulky 50.... don't do it.... you will love care free walks with a 43 and 77.....

For me... the 24-70 and 50 are get the job done lenses.... the 31, 43 and 77 are enjoying life lenses.

Last edited by noelpolar; 11-29-2019 at 05:49 PM.
11-29-2019, 09:15 PM - 1 Like   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by pepperberry farm Quote
buy them both, test each for a month in the Single In Challenge, sell the one you don't like...
We all know how that will actually end up. If they are like me they keep them both. This is why I have an almost complete collection of vintage Pentax 50ish lenses and only one I use. Sadly the one I use I got it because I figured I could flip it fast and come out way ahead. Then I used it and fell in love with the 50mm focal length again.
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