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04-23-2020, 09:57 AM - 1 Like   #31
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Mainly because I wasn't aware that Pentax had made a regular FA version of the 50mm f2.8 macro....

04-23-2020, 10:04 AM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by BryantCP Quote
Mainly because I wasn't aware that Pentax had made a regular FA version of the 50mm f2.8 macro....
that's ok

I get surprised from time to time myself
04-23-2020, 10:46 AM - 1 Like   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
The options are the SMC Pentax-A 50mm 1:2.8 macro and the SMC Pentax-FA (or F) 50mm 1:2.8 Macro. I want to take 1:1 magnification and AF out of the equation.

The A has 6 elements in 4 groups, the F/FA has 8 elements in 7 groups. 6 vs 8 elements. FA is heavier and larger. But all those things I want to out of the equation.


Purely on IQ (sharpness (center and across the frame, character, and bokeh). What are the differences and which one do you like more and why?.
I have both the Pentax A 50 f/2.8 and the Vivitar 55 f/2.8 and they are two of my favorite lenses. The Pentax is smaller and lighter, for sure. But both have beautiful rendering and are fun to use. I use them for macro and also regular shooting, and can't really decide which I like better. If you don't mind manual focus (and manual aperture, for the Vivitar), they are both a great bargain. If you want more samples, some photos taken with Pentax A are here: Pentax-A 50 f2.8 macro | Flickr and with Vivitar are here :Vivitar 55mm f2.8 macro | Flickr
04-23-2020, 06:36 PM - 5 Likes   #34
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I own both lenses, having just purchased the FA 50. If you take the AF and 1:1 out of the equation, I think I would lean toward the A 50 f2.8. It's smaller, it handles better (particularly for manual focus), and has more "character." The FA is slightly better technically—a little more richer saturation and microcontrast, and probably slightly sharper (although not significantly so).

Here's a couple of images from the A 50/2.8:





And the FA 50/2.8:





04-23-2020, 07:09 PM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by northcoastgreg Quote
I own both lenses, having just purchased the FA 50. If you take the AF and 1:1 out of the equation, I think I would lean toward the A 50 f2.8. It's smaller, it handles better (particularly for manual focus), and has more "character." The FA is slightly better technically—a little more richer saturation and microcontrast, and probably slightly sharper (although not significantly so).

Here's a couple of images from the A 50/2.8:





And the FA 50/2.8:


Color saturation is the one area where my A50/2.8 does not shine, but with digital processing that matters little.
04-23-2020, 07:41 PM - 1 Like   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
The options are the SMC Pentax-A 50mm 1:2.8 macro and the SMC Pentax-FA (or F) 50mm 1:2.8 Macro. I want to take 1:1 magnification and AF out of the equation.

The A has 6 elements in 4 groups, the F/FA has 8 elements in 7 groups. 6 vs 8 elements. FA is heavier and larger. But all those things I want to out of the equation.


Purely on IQ (sharpness (center and across the frame, character, and bokeh). What are the differences and which one do you like more and why?.
Don’t we all agree the FA50/2.8 Macro is the sharpest Pentax lens ever produced (perhaps excepting the ubobtainium FA*200/4 Macro)? This old resolution test is still relevant -110 lpmm out to the corners @f/8

http://www.takinami.com/yoshihiko/photo/lens_test/pentax_normal.html

I have the FA50 (and FA100) and K50 and K100. Until I received the DFA*50/1.4 my first choice for a 50 was the FA50/2.8 Macro, even though the bokeh is glowy and it fringes as a regular normal.

Last edited by monochrome; 04-23-2020 at 07:46 PM.
04-24-2020, 02:28 AM   #37
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It seems the Pentax-A has a bit more character/flaws. Which I like. Slightly desaturated colours can give very nice rendering. That is probably what drew me to the lens in the first place. I will be making a mental note of the FA as well. Allphotolenses.com has their optical designs listed and they are very different indeed. I guess it was to hard to make AF work with such big chunks of glass.

04-24-2020, 03:18 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
Which 50mm 2.8 Macro would you pick.
I must admit I'm not a macro kinda guy, but I've been very impressed with my “Femme Fatale” Pentax-A 50mm F2.8 Macro.

It is very seriously sharp... probably the most so in my harem of "Ladies", but please don't tell the others.

The other good news is you can acquire these used relatively easily and inexpensively.


Last edited by Kerrowdown; 04-24-2020 at 03:20 PM.
04-24-2020, 04:05 AM   #39
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Doe anybody know what is the current status on shipping from Japan? (Since there are hardly any flights going on).
04-24-2020, 08:57 AM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
Doe anybody know what is the current status on shipping from Japan? (Since there are hardly any flights going on).
I ordered a couple lenses from Japan last month (one was the A50/2.8 macro) and they were shipped on March 30th via DHL. I had them in my hands two days later in Canada on April 1st.

I also have a camera coming via EMS, no ETA on that.

Mail/courier flights are not impacted.

Phil.
04-24-2020, 12:09 PM   #41
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I also have the A50 2.8, donít use it very often but I find that while itís very sharp with excellent rendering, itís standout quality to me is the handling: perfect size and great and smooth manual focus feel. If not for the rubber focusing ring, it feels like a limited lens build quality wise.
04-24-2020, 12:45 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
I guess it was to hard to make AF work with such big chunks of glass.
The macro A 50/2.8 is not a big chunk of glass, and it also has a floating element.

My DFA 50/2.8 (optical the same as the FA and F, if I remember correctly), is much sharper than my A 50/2.8, but the DFA has a mechanical flaw, too flimsy with its double heliocoid (which makes it compact though) to keep the optics propper centrated, especially noticible in portret mode shots.
If I stumble over a FA or F 50/2.8, I will probably replace the DFA.
04-24-2020, 02:25 PM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by glasbak Quote
The macro A 50/2.8 is not a big chunk of glass, and it also has a floating element.
I was Going by the optical scheme. If you look at the lens and how deep the front element is receded it must be quite compact.
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