Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
04-22-2009, 04:06 PM   #1
Pentaxian
bdery's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Quebec city, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,828
Evolution (in lenses)

As I wrote yesterday, I just got a SMC-F 50 mm f1,7 to replace my SMC-A f1,4 (AF is more or less necessary for my wife).

I thought it would be fun to compare both lenses side by side. The evolution in design is quite stricking. I'm not sure yet if I prefer the look of the A or the F, though I think the A has the edge. It looks older but sturdier.

That being said, I'm surprised at the nice build quality of the f, much better than what I expected after reading comments. And the focus ring is very nicely damped even though the lens is AF. Much nicer than the focus ring on my sigma 17-70 (my other AF lens). One thing surprising is the size of the maximum apertures... MUCH larger on the F1,4 even though the difference in f-stop isn't that huge.

Next step : compare them optically.

On to the pictures!

Two sisters


Now and then


Open


04-22-2009, 04:21 PM   #2
Pentaxian
bdery's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Quebec city, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,828
Original Poster
Here's the first test shot I got with the F... Nothing fancy, since spring is just kicking in here in Quebec. Bokeh is pretty nice at f2, even with a busy background. It's no macro lens but still pretty nice!

04-22-2009, 05:41 PM   #3
Veteran Member
Andi Lo's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Posts: 2,925
The A lenses are beautifully designed indeed. Other than the gritty focusing ring, I think they actually fit the DSLR body design quite well.
04-22-2009, 05:44 PM   #4
Pentaxian
Arpe's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: New Zealand
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,344
I'm not a fan of the little windows in modern lenses showing the focus distance. I like seeing all the numbers all over the place! The old way makes it appear way more complicated than it really is, which is cool.

04-22-2009, 06:57 PM   #5
Pentaxian
bdery's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Quebec city, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,828
Original Poster
I agree that the A design fits a DSLR very well. And that all the numbers give the lenses some style... I still have three manual lenses for when I want somehing old-fashioned, though the convenience of AF is hard to beat. I hope I find a new home for the A soon! It will apear in the marketplace as soon as I finish comparing the optics of both fifties.
04-22-2009, 09:04 PM   #6
Pentaxian
Just1MoreDave's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Aurora, CO
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,859
I kept both of those; they have complementary strengths. The F50/1.7 is great for AF. I don't really trust AF at wide apertures because the plane of focus is so critical. The F50/1.7 does better than I expect at this. It also has the flatter field and wide open sharpness advantage of all the Pentax f1.7 50s. I am the only one who notices the occasional hexagonal highlight.

The A50/1.4 is much nicer to manually focus, both in damping feel and twice as much travel distance in the ring for more precision. It is more fun to use unless you have a fast-moving subject. The out of focus areas are slightly better but not really enough to worry about.

If I had SR, I might sell the A50/1.4 because it doesn't report its focal length to the camera and keep the F50/1.7.
04-23-2009, 04:53 AM   #7
axl
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Nove Zamky, Slovakia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 7,181
congrats on F50/1.7. It's a great lens. May be 1/2 stop slwer than your old A version but I'm sure it'll hold it's ground. It's nicly sharp at f1.7 and from f2.8 it rivals just about anything you trhow at it (in the centre). Corners lack a bit of of sharpnes until f5-5.6. AF speed is great, nearly the same as my DA40 (which is supposed to be one of the fastest AFing lenses).
all in all, great lens, and I'm sure you'll enjoy it...

BR

PS: next stop DA*55/1.4
04-23-2009, 06:53 AM   #8
Veteran Member
creampuff's Avatar

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Singapore
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3,955
I find the F series pretty dated looking design wise. The focusing ring is thin hard plastic and I have seen the rubber edges peeling away and dust in the window on poor copies. That said, I still prefer the FA series and A series 50mm f/1.4s.



04-23-2009, 11:35 AM   #9
Senior Member
kibipod's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Ohio
Posts: 276
Wow, some wonderful lens shots ....................... you guys are product photogs or what? Great skill folks
04-23-2009, 06:34 PM   #10
Pentaxian
bdery's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Quebec city, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,828
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by creampuff Quote
I find the F series pretty dated looking design wise. The focusing ring is thin hard plastic and I have seen the rubber edges peeling away and dust in the window on poor copies. That said, I still prefer the FA series and A series 50mm f/1.4s.
Well, as you can see my copy doesn't have any dust. In fact this parricular lens looks brand new... I don't see the rubber you refer to. The focus ring is indeed small, which isn't a real issue with an AF lens. It's very nicely damped, however.
04-23-2009, 06:36 PM   #11
Pentaxian
bdery's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Quebec city, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,828
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by kibipod Quote
Wow, some wonderful lens shots ....................... you guys are product photogs or what? Great skill folks

Nothing of the sort, but thanks for the compliment! I simply used an external light source (in this case an AF280T flash with the head tilted forward for macro).
04-24-2009, 12:13 AM   #12
axl
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Nove Zamky, Slovakia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 7,181
the rubber creampuff is refering to goes from 50 to 50 (I mean the lettering on the sides of the lens) through the bottom of the lens. This bit is known to peel sometimes with F series...

BR
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
af, evolution, focus, k-mount, lens, lenses, pentax lens, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Macro My macro evolution: a series EdMaximus Post Your Photos! 7 11-12-2009 02:39 PM
Evolution spyglass Post Your Photos! 6 03-27-2008 10:26 AM
K20D - Evolution or Revolution Katsura Pentax News and Rumors 7 01-26-2008 03:35 PM
Pentax Evolution benjikan Pentax DSLR Discussion 54 02-08-2007 11:19 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:06 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top