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01-08-2009, 07:21 AM   #1
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Need a 50mm Macro...

For my product shoots coming up I need to get me a 50mm macro (unless my DA*16-50mm or DA35LTD can do the trick but I doubt it) What are my best bets? Preferably Pentax, cuz I'm a Pentax Snob but open to others. K mount, MF is OK. I have gone through the lens review DB and think the M50 f/4 looks like a winner, but the A 50 f/2.8 seems to be even better. Is the DFA 50 f/2.8 even in the same ballpark and is there an F or FA model?

01-08-2009, 07:27 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Buddha Jones Quote
For my product shoots coming up I need to get me a 50mm macro (unless my DA*16-50mm or DA35LTD can do the trick but I doubt it) What are my best bets? Preferably Pentax, cuz I'm a Pentax Snob but open to others. K mount, MF is OK. I have gone through the lens review DB and think the M50 f/4 looks like a winner, but the A 50 f/2.8 seems to be even better. Is the DFA 50 f/2.8 even in the same ballpark and is there an F or FA model?

I've owned the M 50 f/4 and the FA 50 2.8 macro, and both are just wonderful and among the sharpest lenses I've ever used.

Curious, why won't your DA 35ltd macro work? Seems like that would be perfect for product shots?


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01-08-2009, 07:42 AM   #3
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For a non-Pentax option: Sigma 50mm 1:2.8 Macro (1:1). I have the non-DG version and so far I have gotten excellent performance out of this lens. Here is a link to Amazon $247 new:

Amazon.com: Sigma 50mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro Lens for Pentax and Samsung SLR Cameras: Electronics
01-08-2009, 07:51 AM   #4
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Why can't your DA 35mm f/2.8 1:1 macro limited not doing the job? Can you clarify your project with some context.

About the 50mm macro, I highly recommend Pentax A 50mm f/2.8 1:2 Macro. It is the best MF 50mm that I have encountered if MF is considered. Price can range from $120 to $180 about 6 months ago.

01-08-2009, 08:04 AM   #5
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IMO the DA35 is the lens to use for product/food shots. I feel that's its best use....even more so than shooting 1:1 macros.
01-08-2009, 08:38 AM   #6
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I havent really tried yet, but I was thinking it may be too wide... Maybe I can get some time to play with it today or tomorrow.
01-08-2009, 08:40 AM   #7
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I would dispute the "too wide" argument simply because you can get as close as you want. With product shooting you don't have to maintain the same working distance you would for portraits. You can get a lot closer and set your lighting up accordingly.
01-08-2009, 09:22 AM   #8
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Buddah, I also do product shots (silver jewelry). To be honest, I rarely want to get that close to my products as it just accentuates the minuscule flaws in the product. Getting a little distance between the product and cropping seems to provide the best results.

01-08-2009, 09:31 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by maxwell1295 Quote
I would dispute the "too wide" argument simply because you can get as close as you want. With product shooting you don't have to maintain the same working distance you would for portraits. You can get a lot closer and set your lighting up accordingly.

Yeah, in fact I think the very first person I saw who bought the DA 35 on dpreview
last year bought it on the company credit card for product shots for his work.

Small aperture/tripod/ISO200 up close, it's gotta be the ultimate product shot lens.

Wish I had some relevant examples...







There, if you were in the market for that toy or an old rusty bolt, you'd say
"sold!!" after seeing those shots.

EDIT:

QuoteQuote:
Buddah, I also do product shots (silver jewelry). To be honest, I rarely want to get that close to my products as it just accentuates the minuscule flaws in the product. Getting a little distance between the product and cropping seems to provide the best results.
Well, there you go, maybe that's a good reason for the 50. But it probably depends on the product, too.



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01-08-2009, 10:08 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Buddha Jones Quote
For my product shoots coming up I need to get me a 50mm macro (unless my DA*16-50mm or DA35LTD can do the trick but I doubt it) What are my best bets? Preferably Pentax, cuz I'm a Pentax Snob but open to others. K mount, MF is OK. I have gone through the lens review DB and think the M50 f/4 looks like a winner, but the A 50 f/2.8 seems to be even better. Is the DFA 50 f/2.8 even in the same ballpark and is there an F or FA model?
I do most of my product shots with a 50mm macro, which is a great focal length for most relatively small item (cameras, lenses, toys, etc). Lately I've been using the FA 50/2.8 Macro, which is great. I'd highly recommend the A 50/2.8 Macro, it's a great performer as well, not to mention I've got one available . The A doesn't get to 1:1 like the FA does, but for product shots you generally don't need to get that close.
01-08-2009, 01:32 PM   #11
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Buddha, the only 'short' macros I have are the DFA 50 and the DA 35; both are superlative in every way. I think the 50 may be a little sharper, but others may see things differently. Both are similarlly priced, within 30-50 bucks...I don't think you could go wrong with either. Now if only PTX would actually start shipping that ring flash.........grrrrr!
01-08-2009, 01:58 PM   #12
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It would be hard to beat that M 50 if you don't mind a fully manual lens.


Tom G

Last edited by 8540tomg; 01-08-2009 at 06:15 PM. Reason: typo
01-08-2009, 07:26 PM   #13
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It is my first day with Pentax DA 35mm f/2.8 1:1 Macro Limited and I really like the handling and ease of focusing. Yes, the wider view may get you into some empty space around your shooting objects but I try to find location with interesting color as in purple, green and highlight to enhance the look of the product. I used my red notebook to raise my Praktica MTL5 film camera for product shots


All pictures shot with Pentax K20D and
Pentax DA 35mm f/2.8 1:1 Macro Limited




wrong exposure, forget that I am in M mode



Like the space given with 35mm so that I
can steal the background purple color




Hin's First Camera





Now I need detail on the strangely looking
auto <--> M switching nob
with Super-Lentar 28mm f/2.8 (m42)



I should have got a better view
along with A <--> M switching letter



I was born Pentaxian
I couldn't believe that my
1st SLR camera Praktica MTL5
has a Pentax neck strap



I will suggest to do mock testing on your 35mm before jumping the gun on another 50mm macro. Of course the 50mm macro is worth the money. But why spend on the 50mm macro if you can use the money on the DA 70mm or buy a Cosina 55mm f/1.2 for aquarium. I find my Cosina 55mm f/1.2 to be my best lens for aquarium visit due to its fast speed and superb manual focusing ring for those AF-unfriendly fish and dark environment where tripod and flash are inappropriate.
01-08-2009, 07:29 PM   #14
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On a side note ... Hin your Praktica looks to be in MINT condition (ie: never been handled).
01-08-2009, 08:05 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mechan1k Quote
On a side note ... Hin your Praktica looks to be in MINT condition (ie: never been handled).
It is a long story. My eldest brother was an enthusiast on SLR camera back when I was a teenager. And I got influenced by his camera purchases but I didn't have money to buy any good camera and I managed to find this inexpensive East Germany made camera. I still remembered my 1st day with it not knowing how to use it. I ran through Macau, my home town, as a teenager excited about picture taking not much different than the present Hin who has become the photo nuts with Pentax. Calling me a photo nut is an understatement but I digress the confirmed title of LBA king in 2008. I don't deserve that title as I tried hard to control my passion (call it addiction if you are honest and truthful) as much as I can, I sold at least 10 cameras and 50+ lens in 2008. And I have been helping friends in need in buying their gear to help easing off LBA in a ego balance whenever I can afford.

The camera has been used occasionally while in college. And I store it with a leather case and hence the spotless praktica you see today. You know what, my Praktica camera is in better shape than ANY pantax film cameras that I have purchased, lusted for, LBA bought at impulse, exchanged, returned, and sold.

I sold at least 11 film cameras as in Pentax Auto 110, Pentax p30, Pentax p3n, Pentax Spotmatic, Pentax PZ-1, Pentax Program Plus, Pentax Super Program, Pentax pz-10, Pentax pz-20, Pentax ME super, Pentax MG over the course of 1.5 years of Pentax journey, almost none are in better shape than my Praktica, hence I kept it for history sake. This ONE is NOT for sale unless I get my Ultimate Film Camera.



product shot with Pentax FA 50 f/1.4

I have serious CBA with camera buying addiction with film cameras but I cut my CBA title in selling all but this one alone. It is similar to Spotmatic but the focusing screen is better in my view. The Germany sure knows how to build solid cameras that last long a long time.

Last edited by hinman; 01-08-2009 at 08:17 PM.
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