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06-18-2009, 07:13 PM   #16
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example 2

F 50/1.4 @ f2.8 reduce size & crop 100%

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Last edited by malakola; 06-18-2009 at 10:18 PM. Reason: fix : image crop 100%
06-18-2009, 08:34 PM   #17
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It looks like in your crop tests, the F 50 1.4 is sharper than the FA 85, however you shot the 85 at 1.7 and the 50 at 2.8. Either way, you own 2 of the sharpest lenses around! BTW, the F 50 1.4 scored exactly the same as the FA 85 on Photodo. Based on the little lens list of ones you own, you definitely know your stuff.

To the person who mentioned the Sigma 180mm -- damn, I want that lens!!
06-18-2009, 09:20 PM   #18
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the missing lenses...

Unfortunately a few candidates are being missed...

Personally I think this is Pentax's sharpest AF lens: the FA* 200/4 Macro - 100% crop - no sharpening.

Great Spangled Fritillary:


As is this lens - the FA* 300/2.8 - sharp across the frame even at F/2.8. The subject is 6 feet away, only 7-9cm long, at 1/160 second in overcast, windy conditions with a 300mm + 1.4x TC (420mm) in the mix.. Again, 100% crop, no sharpening.

Ruby Throated Hummingbird (male):


Another male Ruby Throated Hummingbird. Same lens and TC used as in #2... However, this was taken at only 1/100 sec., 420mm, again no sharpening (just ACR default conversion settings from RAW):


Same lens with K10D, no sharpening, 100% crop, ISO 800, no NR, 1/60 second:


One more lens - the FA* 250-600/5.6 is quite sharp as zooms go, even wide open. No sharpening, 100% crop but a shallow DOF at F/5.6:


With these lenses, really good technique is critical for the best results.

Regards,
Marc

Last edited by Marc Langille; 06-18-2009 at 09:51 PM. Reason: clarification, added images
06-18-2009, 09:41 PM   #19
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Well, from my non-scientific tests, I can tell you that my A* 85mm is without a doubt a good deal sharper than my FA* 85mm. This is the case from wide open to at least f5.6, where the difference becomes less apparent. Granted, the A* is not AF, but it is sharper. I've also only tried one sample of each lens so sample variation could play a part, but my FA* is still amazing, just not as sharp as the A*.

I'm not going off of lens tests here, but rather real world experience. I've never compared any of my other lenses as far as sharpness goes if they don't have similar focal lengths, so I can't say which of my lenses is sharpest. I'd guess that "average" sharpness is pretty close between 31mm Ltd, A* 85mm and A* 200mm Macro.Only one of those is AF though. My bet would be that the A* 85mm is overall my sharpest lens. It is ridiculously sharp from wide open on up through the range of apertures that I use it at. That was not the question though so sorry for bringing up mf lenses.

Also, do you mean absolute sharpest at it's sharpest apeture, or sharpest across the whole range of apertures? And in the center of an image only, or across the frame?

QuoteOriginally posted by K-9 Quote
If any of the top 3 were debatable for dropping out, this one definitely isn't. Without a doubt one of the sharpest lenses, any brand, as any lens tests over the years have reported, and (most) owners will attest. I distinctly recall an extensive lens test (but I can't recall by who) done in the 90's of all currently sold MF and AF lenses and the two lenses regarded as the top 2 in sharpness were a manual focus Contax (the G series 90mm Sonnar) and the FA 85.

As far as Photodo's MTF lens tests, I belive only 2 lenses scored higher than the FA 85, another Contax (the 45mm Planar) and the other was a Canon EF 200mm f1.8.


06-18-2009, 09:44 PM   #20
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Putting in a vote for the DA 35 Ltd...
06-18-2009, 10:04 PM   #21
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Without a question, the FA*200mm Macro is the sharpest out there, the DA70LTD is also a beast. Neither of which I own unfortunately, but I think that the DA*50-135mm and the DA*200mm are worthy of argument.
06-18-2009, 10:51 PM   #22
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To me it does not make sense just to talk about the sharpest lens without bringing in the aperture as a parameter. I think the question should read; which are the sharpest lenses at F 1.4. This is a very different question to which are the sharpest lenses at F4.

Then of course you have the issue that a sharper lens usually does not have as nice a bokeh, but I can agree to ignore that for now :-)

At F1.4 my fav would be FA85. I picked up the new 55 yesterday, and I have hopes it will be up there as well. At F2 I think the FA35 is a strong contender as well. At F4 FA85 but also DA200
06-18-2009, 11:11 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by K-9 Quote
I don't know exactly what order, but IMO, these 3 are tops in Pentax land:

F 50mm 1.4
FA 50mm 2.8 macro
FA 85mm 1.4

I just can't think of any others that challenge these, unless you have an argument for the F version of the 50mm 2.8 macro.
Try FA 31 f/1.8 at f/4.

06-19-2009, 01:36 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Votesh Quote
Well, from my non-scientific tests, I can tell you that my A* 85mm is without a doubt a good deal sharper than my FA* 85mm. This is the case from wide open to at least f5.6, where the difference becomes less apparent. Granted, the A* is not AF, but it is sharper. I've also only tried one sample of each lens so sample variation could play a part, but my FA* is still amazing, just not as sharp as the A*.

I'm not going off of lens tests here, but rather real world experience. I've never compared any of my other lenses as far as sharpness goes if they don't have similar focal lengths, so I can't say which of my lenses is sharpest. I'd guess that "average" sharpness is pretty close between 31mm Ltd, A* 85mm and A* 200mm Macro.Only one of those is AF though. My bet would be that the A* 85mm is overall my sharpest lens. It is ridiculously sharp from wide open on up through the range of apertures that I use it at. That was not the question though so sorry for bringing up mf lenses.

Also, do you mean absolute sharpest at it's sharpest apeture, or sharpest across the whole range of apertures? And in the center of an image only, or across the frame?
Generally, if it's sharpest at one aperture it's usually is going to mean that lens is pretty sharp through a few stops above and below that.

The A 85mm scored the same rating on photodo as the F 50mm 1.4 and the F 50mm 2.8 macro. Unfortunately, they didn't test the FA 85mm, but my guess is it would be comparable.

While those animal pics of the 200mm are splendid shots, they don't look as sharp on my screen as the crop of the FA 85 or F 50mm 1.4 that malakola provided above.

Last edited by K-9; 06-19-2009 at 02:02 AM.
06-19-2009, 02:15 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by quarc Quote
To me it does not make sense just to talk about the sharpest lens without bringing in the aperture as a parameter.
At F1.4 my fav would be FA85. I picked up the new 55 yesterday, and I have hopes it will be up there as well. At F2 I think the FA35 is a strong contender as well. At F4 FA85 but also DA200


I second that

While sharpness is part of whole picture, I would consider my F50mmF1.7 fairly sharp even at F2 with very little DoF











Daniel

Last edited by danielchtong; 06-19-2009 at 04:29 AM.
06-19-2009, 04:11 AM   #26
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someone needs to loan a 50/2.8 macro and a 85/1.4 to photozone to test out!
06-19-2009, 04:33 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Langille Quote
Same lens with K10D,no sharpening, 100% crop, ISO 800, no NR, 1/60 second:


Regards,
Marc



The images are sharp. No doubt at F9.5.

I cannot find the exif of other images though


Daniel
06-19-2009, 04:44 AM   #28
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The sharpest resolution figures measured for a current Pentax AF lens is that of the Pentax 43mm limited at F4, PERIOD.
06-19-2009, 04:53 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by pcarfan Quote
The sharpest resolution figures measured for a current Pentax AF lens is that of the Pentax 43mm limited at F4, PERIOD.
Photozone haven't done a test on a 50 2.8 macro yet. It could give the 43 a run for its money as it is a very very sharp lens from all accounts.
06-19-2009, 04:54 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by K-9 Quote
Contax (the 45mm Planar)
Carl Zeiss T* f2 45mm Planar, for the Contax G series.

That lens is sharp. Very sharp. Exceedingly sharp. Obsidian-ly sharp. Tim Page lent me a G2 with the Planar, and, holy crap:



It both micturates and defecates all over anything Leica ever made in the same focal range.
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