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03-18-2009, 07:30 PM   #16
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The DA40 is one of my most favorite lenses and has been with me since the beginning of this hobby! I've sold off my kit lenses and various others and have purchased more lenses since then, but my DA40 remains the workhorse lens that gets the job done in a nice, compact and easy to use package.

And the IQ blows me away all the time. I can't believe a lens so small can decimate lenses way larger and way more expensive.

I have since bought the DA40's companions to complete the set (the DA21 and DA70 Ltd). That's how much I love the DA40.

03-18-2009, 11:22 PM   #17
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I love mine...

I use it as a walkaround with terrific IQ and I use it with extension tubes for a light macro setup.

Here are same pictures I posted in Gus' thread.







I much prefer the DA40 over the 50 f1.4, I have the A version but have used the FA version but did not find it any better. No way is IQ better on the 50.. sharpness maybe at certain apertures but not the general contrast and pop that the 40 gives.

I do say I don't use it nearly enough ... kinda obsessed with my VL 125 at the moment.. using that even as a walkaround.

Cheers
Shang
03-19-2009, 01:48 AM   #18
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I absolutely love DA40. Even after getting 31ltd, 40 remains my favourite lens, why? For normal available light shooting it's great. It doesn't leg much behind 31 in terms of performance and is much more portable. Having said that, I haven't taken 31 to many serious outings yet, but that's about to change soon

BR
03-19-2009, 01:52 AM   #19
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As to the 40 Ltd not being as sharp as the FA 50. I own pretty well all of the Ltd lenses and although the 50 (which is not a Ltd) is a sweet lens and can be used wide open which I do on occasion, I don't think it comes close to the 40 Ltd in across the board sharpness and contrast. Wouldn't it be wonderful if Pentax could accomplish the same feat in a 40mm f1.8 Lens? A f1.4 would probably be asking too much as the trade offs would be pretty obvious in weight, price etc. None the less, this quirky funny looking anomaly is quite the little gem. It is funny when shooting with this lens and the crew look at the camera and often say WTF is that???

03-19-2009, 01:56 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by benjikan Quote
As to the 40 Ltd not being as sharp as the FA 50. I own pretty well all of the Ltd lenses and although the 50 (which is not a Ltd) is a sweet lens and can be used wide open which I do on occasion, I don't think it comes close to the 40 Ltd in across the board sharpness and contrast. Wouldn't it be wonderful if Pentax could accomplish the same feat in a 40mm f1.8 Lens? A f1.4 would probably be asking too much as the trade offs would be pretty obvious in weight, price etc. None the less, this quirky funny looking anomaly is quite the little gem. It is funny when shooting with this lens and the crew look at the camera and often say WTF is that???
not that I'd have any experiences with any crew looking at my camera, but when you enter high street stores (mainly orientated on CaNiSon) and you take out your camera to try somethin on it, the sales assistants are often as confused as your crew
03-19-2009, 10:58 AM   #21
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FWIW, the DA40 is one of my favorite, best, and most used lenses, and it's plenty sharp, but not necessarily hugely sharper at any particular aperture than my other lenses. For instance, I am pretty sure my A50/1.7 is sharper at f/2.8, and really, my M100/2.8 might even equal the DA40 wide open (although since DOF is so much shallower with the 100, it's harder to compare). Stopped down a bit, the M28/2.8 starts looking pretty darned good too (and it's not bad at f/2.8, either). Stop down further and even the 18-55 looks about as good.

Now mind you, I'm not talking about doing any sort of controlled tests. I'm talking about whatever differences happen to strike my eye. Within the bouhds I just described, I'd put them all in the same ballpark. But one thing that *is* immediately noteworthy about the DA40 is how *uniformly* good it is - it's impressively sharp across the whole frame, at all apertures. And I happen to love how it looks (on my K200D, and DS before that), plus I love the overall "rendering" (for lack of a better word), the focal length, the focus speed, etc.

Now, the DA70 I just got - *this* one is starting to scare me with its sharpness. But I think that's also attributable to the shallower DOF it can generate at any given aperture, so the sharp parts of a picture can really stand out.

Some day I would like to do some sort of sharpness testing on my lenses - I know, who really cares, but I think it would be fun to be able to discuss things like this more objectively. But I'm not sure what the best method would be for someone who doesn't really want to deal with mility testing charts and so forth.

Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 03-19-2009 at 11:51 PM.
03-19-2009, 02:20 PM   #22
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I received my 40mm ltd yesterday. I just couldn't resit it! The A 50 f/1.7 that i own is sooooo sharp but just a little long for me and having no autofocus i miss too many people shots (kids and drunks don't sit still). I all other regards the 50 is a keeper!

I took some test shots yesterday afternoon with the 40 (sorry no samples) but i did find that it is significantly softer wide open than it is above > f4.0. I know you all want to see samples but i will repeat the tests this afternoon to confirm and post them.

The only reason i am taking the test shots is that this lens has a reputation for being fantastic wide open and i want to make sure that it is considering i just parted with some hard earned coin (and i just want to use it lots).

Is it normal to be a fair bit softer wide open?


PS. great color rendition and it is very consistent across the whole frame.

cheers
mike
03-19-2009, 02:22 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by schmik Quote
I received my 40mm ltd yesterday. I just couldn't resit it! The A 50 f/1.7 that i own is sooooo sharp but just a little long for me and having no autofocus i miss too many people shots (kids and drunks don't sit still). I all other regards the 50 is a keeper!

I took some test shots yesterday afternoon with the 40 (sorry no samples) but i did find that it is significantly softer wide open than it is above > f4.0. I know you all want to see samples but i will repeat the tests this afternoon to confirm and post them.

The only reason i am taking the test shots is that this lens has a reputation for being fantastic wide open and i want to make sure that it is considering i just parted with some hard earned coin (and i just want to use it lots).

Is it normal to be a fair bit softer wide open?

cheers
mike
Mine is sharp at f2.8...

03-19-2009, 02:35 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by schmik Quote
I received my 40mm ltd yesterday. I just couldn't resit it! The A 50 f/1.7 that i own is sooooo sharp but just a little long for me and having no autofocus i miss too many people shots (kids and drunks don't sit still). I all other regards the 50 is a keeper!

I took some test shots yesterday afternoon with the 40 (sorry no samples) but i did find that it is significantly softer wide open than it is above > f4.0. I know you all want to see samples but i will repeat the tests this afternoon to confirm and post them.

The only reason i am taking the test shots is that this lens has a reputation for being fantastic wide open and i want to make sure that it is considering i just parted with some hard earned coin (and i just want to use it lots).

Is it normal to be a fair bit softer wide open?


PS. great color rendition and it is very consistent across the whole frame.

cheers
mike
sounds weird to be honest, I don't hesitate to use my at f2.8 and frankly there isn't a big difference between that setting and f4. It's simply sharp from corner to corner, double test if you can, hope it's going to turn out fine...

good luck
BR
03-19-2009, 03:15 PM   #25
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Hmmmm... it's not that it is super soft wide open but it is a fair bit different than > f/4.5.

I did do a number of 'tests'. Basically, I took the same shot handheld at various F-stops. And then compared the results through a loupe. I hope this doesn't make me a pixel peeper. I assumed that handheld would make no difference as wide open the faster shutter would yeild sharp sharp goodness.

This afternoon I will test on a tripod to make it more consistent.

If you have 'perfect' copy of this lens, how much difference do you see between wide open and >f4.0?

cheers
mike
03-19-2009, 03:36 PM   #26
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I agree, it looks goofy, but it's extremely sharp at all lens openings - the best lens I have except perhaps for my DA 70.

Jer
03-19-2009, 04:20 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by schmik Quote
Hmmmm... it's not that it is super soft wide open but it is a fair bit different than > f/4.5.

I did do a number of 'tests'. Basically, I took the same shot handheld at various F-stops. And then compared the results through a loupe. I hope this doesn't make me a pixel peeper. I assumed that handheld would make no difference as wide open the faster shutter would yeild sharp sharp goodness.

This afternoon I will test on a tripod to make it more consistent.

If you have 'perfect' copy of this lens, how much difference do you see between wide open and >f4.0?

cheers
mike
Mine was not shockingly sharp, but it was fairly consistent across the aperture range.
03-19-2009, 11:54 PM   #28
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Look at the MTF numbers on photozone.de. If you don't know exactly what they mean, the bar charts gives you a decent idea of how different apertures should compare. I'd say it matches me experience retty well. Dumb question, but - are you sure you're not just seeng the reduced DOF at f/2.8 and mistaking the out-of-focus areas for being soft?
03-20-2009, 12:30 AM   #29
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OK... sorry for the attachments but couldn't bothered with flickr right now.

These area ll crops, these were taken off a tripod all focused on the card (and then AF turned off, so the same focus for all shots).

card1 = f2.8
card2 = f3.5
and so on until f/8.

Is this normal. I'm just checking due to the reputation of this lens.

cheers
mike
Attached Images
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03-20-2009, 12:32 AM   #30
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Here are the remaining shots.
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