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01-11-2009, 11:32 AM   #16
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Hi everyone, let me try to answer the questions so far.

1. Where did you buy it and for what price? On flea-Bay, right here: New 85mm f1.4 Lens for Pentax K10D K20D K100D K200D - eBay (item 360116713123 end time Dec-24-08 21:41:40 PST)

Is anyone going to CES this year? The Sakar press release says they are going to be there, hopefully with this lens.


2. What's the light transmittance? It's the same for the Samyang as the FA*85, at least as far as the MZ-S' meter is concerned.

I noticed the metering was identical when I did my test shots with the different lenses. I gray carded every single picture to make sure. I just double checked again with all three 85s and all 3 are effectively giving the same meter readings.

I do note the A*85 is showing a shutter speed a touch faster (1/4-1/3 stop?) than the Samyang and FA*85. But I am not going to worry too much about it.

But the Samyang and FA*85 meter identically, and I know the FA*85 meters really well since it is the 85 I use the most.

I can't tell you how the metering is on a K100/200 or K10/20 since I don't own these cameras.


3.
QuoteOriginally posted by thePiRaTE!!:
I'm inclined to think that the target wasn't totally flat to the lens and the dof at 1.4 is very unforgiving.
I am also thinking the same.

Note also that I put a link to a larger image below every test picture.

My earlier offer to this forum still stands. Anyone can ping me and we can meet, and I can let you take as many test pictures as you want.


4. Why don't I own a d-SLR? It's a long winded story. Suffice to say I prefer putting my money into nice glass than digital bodies.


5. What are the different applications between a 85/1.4 and the FA77? I can think of several off the top of my head.

85/1.4 - for low light, mainly. Think concert venues, churches/weddings, or museums where tripods aren't allowed or practical. That extra effective stop of speed can be a bigger difference than you think.

For shallow DOF applications if you want to get creative. For those times when you do want to stand out with a big prime on your camera and scare small children & and get questions from other photogs.

Here's my opinion (again). Look, the Vivitar / Sakar / Samyang is reasonably priced for this class of lens. And it is just plain fun to use. All 85/1.4's are fun, but this one is affordable fun. And if you made it all the way through my review, you can see that I think the manual focus handling is also delightfully smooth. And we are all in this to enjoy ourselves.

FA77 - when you absolutely need autofocus. If you use only Pentax gear and nothing else. When you need to be discrete, like street or PJ style. When you travel and need to pack a compact kit or when size & weight are important considerations.

So there is a case to be made for owning both the FA77 and a 85/1.4. I will freely admit you can rely on this statement as far as you can pick up a truck and throw it, since it's coming from me. You did notice my lens collection, didn't you?


Last edited by tranq78; 01-11-2009 at 02:27 PM. Reason: I meant "a touch faster" for A85 metering
01-11-2009, 11:45 AM   #17
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Great, in-depth review! You should add that lens (I'd never heard of it) to the 3rd party lens DB and throw in a link to this thread!

Adam
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01-11-2009, 12:21 PM   #18
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Thank you

I really appreciate the time you've taken to do this.

I've been thinking of selling my FA50mm1.4 and getting this ever since I stumbled across it a few week ago. Hopefully someone can post some 100% dslr crops.

Thanks
01-11-2009, 12:50 PM   #19
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Great Work! Thanks for the indepth Review tranq78.

Jack

01-11-2009, 04:59 PM   #20
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quick crop

Hi,
Have had this lens for a week or two, but haven't really had an opportunity to use it a whole lot yet. Someone wanted to see 100% crops, so here is one I took today wide open. I think I slightly misfocused this, but hopefully not too badly. Maybe tomorrow, I can take this lens out and use it a bit more and post some more crops.
Slight levels adjustment and slight sharpening in ACR.

First is re-sized original and second is 100% crop.
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01-11-2009, 05:48 PM   #21
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Myoptimism, It appears to be very soft wide open....some images I found on the web are sort of like this, and some others appear to be sharper. I would love to see more from you.

Thanks

Few links I found of the Polar 85/1.4

SLR?? Pentax ??

SLR?? Samsung ??

SLR?? Samsung ??

The first image in link 1 is soft like yours (but it is a misfocus as the kids shirt is tack sharp), the last link is quite sharp.

I got these links from this flickr discussion at

Flickr: Discussing Polar 85mm 1.4? Anyone ever hear of this lens? in No metering lenses on Nikon DSLRs

I assume Polar 85/1.4 is the same lens.

Another link with lots and lots of samples form the Polar version, especially the last post on this page.
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/714088/1

Looks VERY promising.

Last edited by pcarfan; 01-11-2009 at 07:29 PM.
01-11-2009, 06:04 PM   #22
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Misfocused

Myoptimism,

I'm not sure if you hit the focus with that shot, also there is quite a bit of noise there. But I would have to say that looks not too bad. And if it is only $295 then its excellent.
01-11-2009, 07:18 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by omega leader Quote
Myoptimism,

I'm not sure if you hit the focus with that shot, also there is quite a bit of noise there. But I would have to say that looks not too bad. And if it is only $295 then its excellent.
Yeah, hard to tell how sharp (or not) the lens is wide open with that shot. Possible misfocus and definitely noise that is blurring detail. Still, I wanted to try an 85/1.4, and didn't want to spend a ton of money, and I generally like the build quality and really like the "A" setting, so I think I will be happy with it.

I got it from onlinedigitalshop in Australia, through Ebay. Here is a current listing of the lens in Pentax mount from this seller.
New 85mm f1.4 Lens for Pentax K10D K20D K100D K200D - eBay Digital Camera Lenses, Lenses, Photographic Accessories, Cameras. (end time 14-Jan-09 18:22:01 AEDST)
I got luck with the first listing, as the price was lowered from $399 Aus (~276 USD) to $319 Aus (~222 USD) on the last day of the first listing, so I "had" to get it, even though I am working hard on me LBA. Total cost with shipping from Australia, around $255 USD.

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Last edited by Myoptimism; 01-11-2009 at 07:34 PM.
01-11-2009, 08:00 PM   #24
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Thanks very much for this review. You are the first on the net, at least in English. I think I prefer the FA77 at half the size. But at this price it is tempting.
01-11-2009, 08:24 PM   #25
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I am interested.

What do you use the 85mm lens primarily for? Is it primarily a portrait lens?
01-12-2009, 09:44 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Myoptimism:
Yeah, hard to tell how sharp (or not) the lens is wide open with that shot. Possible misfocus and definitely noise that is blurring detail.
If you want a good manual focus aid you can try the 'trap focus' method.

If you don't know how trap focus works, you can do a search on this site or on DPReview's Pentax forum for detailed explanations.


QuoteOriginally posted by Adam:
Great, in-depth review! You should add that lens (I'd never heard of it) to the 3rd party lens DB and throw in a link to this thread!
Done! I've put it in the 3rd party database under 'Vivitar' since Sakar's press release states that it will be released as a Vivitar Series I lens.

Last edited by tranq78; 01-12-2009 at 09:59 AM.
01-12-2009, 01:41 PM   #27
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Thanks for being the PF guinea pig for this lens. There was a post before Christmas with lots of people intereseted but nobody seemed able to spare the funds. I've always maintained that if somebody released an affordable 85mm f/1.4 in P/KA mount they would make a killing.

Now if Polar/Samyang/Vivitar/etc. build a 24/28mm f/2 and a 135mm f/2 with similar quality, they could get some serious business from us Pentax folk.
01-12-2009, 06:58 PM   #28
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OK, this looks promising:


low-light

blown highlights, but girls

The first shot, and the belly-button shot


I feel like focus isn't being nailed on a lot of these - either that, or the lens is soft at a lot of apertures... But there are just enough teaser sharp shots to make me think that it might be a good, sharp lens...

Still waiting for the blow-me-away images, though.


.
01-12-2009, 07:00 PM   #29
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Thanks for this review . Great job !
01-12-2009, 07:53 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Miserere Quote
I've always maintained that if somebody released an affordable 85mm f/1.4 in P/KA mount they would make a killing.
THing is it needs to AF, it's pretty clear from the sheer volum eof OOF shots that manual focussing in the digital age is muvh tougher than it was with that bog ole' 35mm viewfinder.

Pentax keeps throwing 35mm to 55mm lenses at us, for the love of a god a cheap 85/1.8 people.
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