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03-19-2009, 10:35 AM   #1
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D FA 100mm macro or Voigtlander 90 APO, or...?


I'm looking to spend around $600 usd max on a lens around this focal range. I have been admiring the 90 APO's color and sharpness for a while. However, I will probably want to do at least a bit of close work at this focal length, and while the 90 is a close focus, I'm wondering if the macro will make a huge difference for this.

What are your opinions? How is the image quality for the 100 macro? How is the build quality for these two lenses? Any other suggestions for that price range?

03-19-2009, 05:13 PM   #2
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
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I only acquired Voigtlander 90mm f3.5 APO Lanthar this week. What I can say is that this lens is superb in its own way: sharp, punchy colour and crispy image rendering. The construction is definitely solid and fully metal. Very sleek looking.

On the other hand, DFA 100mm f2.8 macro is a plasticky counterpart. Light, compact and capable of autofocus. This lens has "variable" optical performance as there is no consistency in sharpness. Sometimes, the images do look soft especially after the images are printed.

The contrast and colour are always high with pentax lenses. Sharpness below f4.0 is a little concern. The autofocus hunts quite a bit and I found manual focusing of this lens rather difficult, far too inferior to Voigtlander 90mm f3.5 Images: DFA 100mm f2.8 macro

Most of us hardly do 1:1 macro. A lot of floral shots look better with 1:2 or 1:3 close up instead.

I know I am keeping my VL 90 for sure.
03-20-2009, 03:07 PM   #3
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Original Poster
Thanks for your advice! I just ordered it, I've heard quite enough good things at this point.
03-20-2009, 03:16 PM   #4
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Totally different lenses.

In fact I did't used DA 100/2.8 Macro but I had FA 100/2.8 Macro and sold it because of Voigtlander 125/2.5. At the same time I had and have VLS 90/3.5.

VLS is great portrait and close up lens - but it is not macro lens. From the other side 100/2.8 was extremaly good for macro shots but I did't like it as portrait lens. To sharp and bokeh not so creamy.

Pentax K20D ,Voigtlander Lanthar 90mm f/3.5 APO
1/200s f/5.6 at 90.0mm iso320

more here:

Voigtlander 90/3.5 APO Lanthar Photo Gallery by Piotr Sobolewski at

Pentax *ist DS ,Pentax smc P-FA 100mm f/2.8 Macro
+TC1.7 +3tubes (68mm) 1/180s f/32.0 iso200

more here:
SMC Pentax-FA 1:2,8 100mm MACRO Photo Gallery by Piotr Sobolewski at


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