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04-11-2007, 07:13 PM   #16
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What about FA 50 vs. FA 35 vs. DA 40 Ltd?

I was going to start a new thread, but I think my question should be in here instead.

I currently have the FA 50 f/1.4, and though I like it a lot, I feel like the focal length is not all that useful. Often I have to stand back pretty far in order to get a good picture, and in tight spaces that sometimes isn't possible. I was considering buying the DA 40, especially since it is so cheap, but I was kinda considering the FA 35 as well. I really can only afford one of the three right now, and I guess I could use some help answering my questions:

Is the 40mm focal length a good focal length for digital, or is 35 better (because 35 ends up basically being a normal lens)?
Is the f/2.8 a big limitation, or is it not really a big deal?
If you were choosing between FA 50 vs. FA 35 vs. DA 40, and you were looking for an indoors/low light/normal (or close to normal) which would you choose?

Thanks in advace

EDIT: Also, is the IQ comparable between the three, or are there major differences?


Last edited by Kendall015; 04-11-2007 at 07:14 PM. Reason: Forgot something
04-11-2007, 08:19 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kendall015 Quote
If you were choosing between FA 50 vs. FA 35 vs. DA 40, and you were looking for an indoors/low light/normal (or close to normal) which would you choose?
OK, everybody, all together now: It depends on what you want to do with the lens. Sorry, somebody had to say it. ;-)

As you acknowledged, the 50mm lens, on a digital camera with the smaller sensor, does not provide a "normal" angle of view. If you are looking for a lens to take photos of people who are sitting right across from you at the dinner table and you want them to look "normal" - you don't want to give the impression you had shoved the camera in their noses - then the 50mm is probably not the ideal lens. But the 50mm is a weak telephoto focal length. It gets you a little closer, but there's a significant difference between 50mm and 70mm or 75mm. I got the 50mm for indoor sports photography where I'm able to get pretty close to the action. Up until now, I've been shooting indoor sports (girls basketball and volleyball) with a Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 lens. It's given me pretty good results at those sports events, and it's proven to be a very decent lens for other uses, as well. But those gyms are really not well lit, and the action is fast - and I find that the f/2.8 just isn't as fast as I could wish, so I'm shooting too often either at a lower shutter speed or (mostly) a higher ISO than I'd prefer. Since I've had the zoom capability, I've used it, but I do a lot of the shooting at around 50mm. So I am pretty confident that I can afford to trade the zoom for the bigger aperture and sharper shots. If there were an affordable zoom in the 30-70 range with a fixed f/1.4, well, I'd have gotten that instead. But I think I can make the 50mm work. Actually, I did use the M 50mm f/1.4 a couple of times. The results were good - when I was able to focus the camera. I'm looking forward to having the auto-focus.

As for the other focal lengths, well, I'm content with the low-end of the Tamron 28-75 and higher end of the Pentax 16-45 for "normal" perspective shooting. To be honest, I don't do a lot of that.

Will
04-12-2007, 12:13 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kendall015 Quote
I was going to start a new thread, but I think my question should be in here instead.

I currently have the FA 50 f/1.4, and though I like it a lot, I feel like the focal length is not all that useful. Often I have to stand back pretty far in order to get a good picture, and in tight spaces that sometimes isn't possible. I was considering buying the DA 40, especially since it is so cheap, but I was kinda considering the FA 35 as well. I really can only afford one of the three right now, and I guess I could use some help answering my questions:

Is the 40mm focal length a good focal length for digital, or is 35 better (because 35 ends up basically being a normal lens)?
Is the f/2.8 a big limitation, or is it not really a big deal?
If you were choosing between FA 50 vs. FA 35 vs. DA 40, and you were looking for an indoors/low light/normal (or close to normal) which would you choose?

Thanks in advace

EDIT: Also, is the IQ comparable between the three, or are there major differences?
Well , i use to own a 50mm f/1.8 and now since a few days i have the Pentax DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited and there is a difference but not quite has much as i would have hoped for.
This lens is very good , very sharp and of excellent build quality but if i had to choose all over again i would maybe go for the 35mm f/2.0.
I don`t know if it`s as sharp and well build but on the other side you`ll be sure to have a real standart lens (52mm)and an extra aperture stop.

When i bought my 40mm i almost bought the Sigma 30mm f/1.4 instead but i didn`t like the built quality , it looked cheap compared to the Pentax 40mm.

Now the best lens of all is the Pentax 31mm f/1.8 but it`s much more expensive , maybe i`ll swap my 40mm for this lens in the futur ?

Here is a pic i took inside a restaurant with very little light.
This is what the f/2.8 of the 40mm lens can do handheld at 1/20s and ISO 1600 .

I forgot to change the WB setting , knowing that the WB in automatic isn`t that effective with my K10D

Last edited by guillermovilas; 04-24-2007 at 04:55 PM.
04-12-2007, 01:15 AM   #19
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I was asking the exact same question not long ago and ended up getting the FA 35mm. I've posted some photos in the "Post Your Photo" thread. It's probably on page 2 now.

edited: ok, heres the link to my post with the photos.

The reason why I didn't choose the DA40 is because of the aperture. I need it to be faster for indoor usage. My house is not well lit so very little natural light. Most of the photos that I've posted except for the feet shots were all shot at night with only tungsten light.

Unfortunately I can't tell you what the FA50m is like but I think I've seen in someone's profile that he has both the 50 and 35. Check the LBA thread. That's where I saw it.

It's frustrating isn't it!

edited: just want to add that what WMBP said is spot on.


Last edited by LittleSwans; 04-12-2007 at 01:21 AM. Reason: to add link to my post
04-12-2007, 11:51 AM   #20
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I have the FA 35mm f2 and the FA 50mm f1.4.

I mostly use the 50mm for portraits.
The 35mm is much more often on my K10D bcs as you said, on a dslr it becomes a normal lens. In fact, the FA 35mm f2 is (with the FA* 24mm f2) my most used lens.

It is very good (sharpness and contrast) even wide open, so it's really a great lens for indoors, and another important thing: it's one of the fastest focusing Pentax lenses.
Of course the bokeh isn't as good as the FA 31mm limited, but it costs much less and is smaller and lighter.

Last edited by Lazar; 04-16-2007 at 01:38 AM.
04-12-2007, 04:59 PM   #21
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I have an FA 50/1.4, FA 35/2 and a DA 40/2.8. The FA 35 is - for me - the most versatile of the three because of it DOF and fast AF. After getting the 35, I rarely use my 50. My DA 40 is a jewel; I use it primarily along with the other two DA limiteds (21 and 70) for travel or when I just feel like using them.

Jer
04-13-2007, 02:03 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sailor Quote
I have an FA 50/1.4, FA 35/2 and a DA 40/2.8. The FA 35 is - for me - the most versatile of the three because of it DOF and fast AF. After getting the 35, I rarely use my 50. My DA 40 is a jewel; I use it primarily along with the other two DA limiteds (21 and 70) for travel or when I just feel like using them.

Jer
Well lucky you , you have them all and therefore you are certainly the best placed person to give a reliable opinion regarding all these exceptional lenses.

I wanted a standard lens and without having the opportunety to try them all before purchase i gambled and bought the DA 40mm.

I`m very impressed by it`s build quality and it`s sharpness but i would have liked it to be a little wider , i notice that i often have to take a few steps back to take my pic , so maybe i was better of with the 35mm ?

That`s the problem , you can`t keep guessing before purchasing and you cannot always afford to sell to buy another lens.

I could just buy a 35mm and compare it with the DA 40mm and then sell one of them but i`m not sure it`s as easy to find buyers for Pentax lenses as it is for Nikon & Canon ?
(I just bought my DA 40mm 330 euro)

Is the 35mm as sharp as the DA 40 mm and what do you think of the 31mm f/1,8 Limited , expensive i know but is it that exceptional ?
04-13-2007, 10:21 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by guillermovilas Quote
what do you think of the 31mm f/1,8 Limited , expensive i know but is it that exceptional ?
Yes, it was declared by Popular Photography as
"The 3 greatest prime lenses we've ever tested!!!"

and by Luminous Landscape as one of the
"The Best (Autofocus) Lenses Money Can Buy"




04-13-2007, 10:59 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by nosnoop Quote
Yes, it was declared by Popular Photography as
"The 3 greatest prime lenses we've ever tested!!!"

and by Luminous Landscape as one of the
"The Best (Autofocus) Lenses Money Can Buy"


But Popular photography did not rate Da 70 too well in the recent publication. It was even tested on DS against canon 400d (Dodgy comparison).
04-14-2007, 07:54 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by guillermovilas Quote
Is the 35mm as sharp as the DA 40 mm and what do you think of the 31mm f/1,8 Limited , expensive i know but is it that exceptional ?
My qualitative (and totally subjective) opinion is that my DA 40 is a bit sharper than my FA 35/2 - although not by much.

Regarding the FA 31, I've no experience; I've not even seen one in the flesh. It has never been on my shopping list owing to its considerable size and weight.

Jer
04-15-2007, 03:16 PM   #26
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Very Nice

QuoteOriginally posted by guillermovilas Quote
Well i got my 40mm f/2.8 Limited just 3 days ago and here are a few of my first shots.

I can see that you are really enjoying your new toy...

Very nice images!

Ben
04-15-2007, 11:28 PM   #27
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I've been thinking about the exact same thing. I love my Pentax-M 40mm, but sometimes I wish it were slightly wider and also autofocus. The DA 40mm is about $75 cheaper on BH though and I really like how small my M 40mm is...
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