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06-25-2009, 10:52 AM   #1
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DA 40mm vs DA 35mm vs FA 35mm

hi
im just looking for a nice standard prime lens for my k10d to replace my kit. i found a couple of lenses that would fit my needs but i really cant make up my mind.

da 35mm f2.8 ltd:
love the macro function on that one.

da 40mm f2.8 ltd:
i really like the small and lightweight build of this pancake. with the k10d being quite heavy i can imagine it beeing a joy for longer walks.

fa 35mm f2.0:
the biggest aperture of all 3 but unfortunately no limited lens. im sure f2.8 will be sufficient most of the time but there are these moments when a bit more light really makes a diffrence.

i read about all of them being great lensen and aprox. the same price range.
but all of them have a nice gimmik to make the decision really hard.
i know it will come down to my personal choice but i would like to hear your oppinion and experiences. thanks..

06-25-2009, 10:57 AM   #2
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in the same boat as you... I think I'm gonna go with the DA 35 .... love it that its macro .... too bad it isnt f2 , it would be a GEM
06-25-2009, 11:08 AM   #3
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35 Ltd f2.8...
06-25-2009, 12:04 PM   #4
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Well, an awful lot of this is about what you want to do with it. I don't own the DA 35 ltd macro and can see where that would be fun but I do have the D FA 50 and D FA 100 macros and since getting the 100 the 50 is slated for the 'to sell' pile (it's a good lens but the distance away from the subject that the 100mm provides makes the 50 not needed for me), so I can't imagine why I'd want to go with a 35mm macro YMMV.

The DA 40 is a great lens, no doubt (as are the DA 21 & DA 70 limiteds). It's become my simple setup to have in a small pack on walks or when you want to be less intrusive. What I've found though is that when I go out with my usual DA* 16-50 the limited lenses get left behind. Totally a personal choice on that.

I don't know the FA 35 so I can't comment.

Again, depends on what you want to do with it and of course your budget constraints.

That's my $0.02

06-25-2009, 12:46 PM   #5
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Tough, touch choice. I own two of those, the FA 35 and DA 40. Repeating what has been said a thousand times, they are both awesome lenses. The FA 35 is such a good focal length for lots of everyday uses, so I would wholly endorse the FA 35 or DA 35 for that reason. The DA 35 gives you the macro capabilities, which is obviously nice to have. My FA 35 is compact, light and flat-out sharp as heck. The DA 40 is obviously incredibly small and compact, with the "limited" feel and great output as well. Sorry to say, I have no definitive answer for you. I'd have a a hard time choosing one of my FA 35 or DA 40 over the other, and with the DA 35 in the mix, it would be even tougher. Good luck--best part is that you can't lose amongst those three.
06-25-2009, 02:37 PM   #6
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never had any of the 35s but I've had the pleasure of having DA40 for just over a year now.
Some time after I got it I added F50/1.7 and FA31/1.8 and I still find myself using DA40 most. Many people underestimate the size. In this case size DOES matter! I'm not too sure if the F50 is better lens, 31 definitely seems to be but even 50 is at least 2x the size of 40. And if you're not going specificaly out to take pics, just want to have camera next to you just in case, you can't beat 40ltd. For the price and size of it, that lens is absolutely marvelous! Opticaly it's simply great... some of my very best shots, were taken with it...
I can't say bad word against the 35s but I'd imagine they'd have hell of a time to beat 40.
good luck choosing.

BR
Peter
06-25-2009, 03:19 PM   #7
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Having both the DA 40 and the DA 35, I can say that the DA 35 produces consistently better results for me, and the advantage of having incredible close focus (let alone macro) abilities is indispensable. That said, the DA 40 is much quicker to focus in some situations, and it's smaller, and it's quite an IQ beast in its own right. I wouldn't give either one up.
06-25-2009, 03:21 PM   #8
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I had the FA 35 and sold it to help fund my DA 35. The FA is a great lens, and it's a great performer even at f/2. It does offer you full frame coverage, which is great if you ever shoot film, or if Pentax ever comes out with a full frame body. It has a similar construction to the FA 50 f/1.4 (plastic body, metal mount), but it does feel like it's made pretty well.

The DA 40 is certainly the smallest of the two, and its sharpness is legendary. It may have the fastest AF speed out of any Pentax lens. However, while not pancakes, the 35mm lenses are not going to add much more weight than the 40mm to your K10D. If you're going to manually focus with the DA 40, it can be a bit tough because the lens is so small.

I decided to get the DA 35 because while it's gives up a little light to the FA 35, it offers me an incredible amount of versatility for a prime lens. I don't have another macro and was always frustrated that I couldn't focus just a little closer with my lenses. I'm also on a bit of a budget, so I couldn't just by a macro without selling one of my lenses. The limited lenses are really beautiful and very well built (all metal), and are designed for your APS-C sensor. The DA 35mm performs well at 2.8 for general shooting, and still gives nice DoF control. You'll probably step down when shooting macros because at 2.8, the DoF is very shallow. If you want a faster lens, you can always pick up a used F/FA 1.4/1.7 for under 200, or an MF 1.7 or 2.0 for a few bucks!

I think the DA 35 is one of the most versatile and unique lenses available out of any brand, and I've been so happy since purchasing one.

-Jason

06-25-2009, 04:50 PM   #9
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I think the DA 35 is an amazing lens. Other than slow focusing, I can't think of anything negative to say about it. It is sharp, amazingly resistant to flare (even without the built in hood), and is nearly indestructible (I have dropped mine twice on to concrete from the height of two meters and it is still going -- done by accident of course). When I was getting it, I waffled for a long time between the close focusing ability of the Da and the bigger aperture of the FA. I decided on the DA in the end and I'm glad I did.

I currently have the DA 40 on order -- I like the idea of the light, pancake lens to carry around and the samples of good photos from it are all over the forum.
06-25-2009, 05:08 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I think the DA 35 is an amazing lens. Other than slow focusing, I can't think of anything negative to say about it. It is sharp, amazingly resistant to flare (even without the built in hood), and is nearly indestructible (I have dropped mine twice on to concrete from the height of two meters and it is still going -- done by accident of course). When I was getting it, I waffled for a long time between the close focusing ability of the Da and the bigger aperture of the FA. I decided on the DA in the end and I'm glad I did.

I currently have the DA 40 on order -- I like the idea of the light, pancake lens to carry around and the samples of good photos from it are all over the forum.
I think that the AF is slow on the DA 35 when going from one extreme to the other, or when leaving the macro mode. Other than that, I feel that the AF on the DA 35 is on par with other Pentax lenses.

My girlfriend always tells me to get the DA 40, and I dream of one day having a deep lens collection with that included. I guess I should have got her the K-m with the pancake instead of XSi that she wanted. :P
06-26-2009, 04:03 AM   #11
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They are all great lenses, and despite the fact that I don't own them all - I have used them all at one point or another.

FA35 is a great lens. It's nice and sharp, not very heavy, FF compatible, and focusses quickly. It also has a tendancy to make images look a little flat. Of the three this is the one I own.

DA35 is a touch slower, f2.8, has a great build, is 1:1 macro and is comparable to the FA35 in many ways. Many folks agree that the macro function is a bit redundant in a wider lens. The only real downside is that it's not a true FF lens (if that matters to you). This is a sexy lens.

DA40 is lauded as being one of the lenses to end all lenses on this site (like the FA31 and FA77), unfortunately anyone I've spoken to in person who has used it (myself included) don't really like it. Yes, it focusses quickly, yes it has a unique focal length, yes it has nice sharpness across the frame (as does DA70 and DA21), but it's incredibly small and can be difficult to handle. YMMV, but everyone I've spoken to (outside of this forum) isn't really impressed with it.

Any are fine choices, and really the differences are only subtleties. It comes down to this...do you want f2, do you want macro, do you want extremely small?

c[_]
06-26-2009, 06:03 AM   #12
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I have found that f2.8 is simply not fast enough in many indoor lighting scenes. I want great IQ from a prime, but I also want it to be faster than a zoom. My choice was the FA 35 because of the price. If I were spending more I would be looking at the 31 Ltd.
06-26-2009, 06:27 AM   #13
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Original Poster
i think im going for the fa 35. beeing faster with a great IQ even at f2.0 really makes although i really really like the 1:1 macro and the sexyness of the da 35 ltd. really tough decission
06-26-2009, 06:41 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
I have found that f2.8 is simply not fast enough in many indoor lighting scenes. I want great IQ from a prime, but I also want it to be faster than a zoom. My choice was the FA 35 because of the price. If I were spending more I would be looking at the 31 Ltd.
Ah, but that's why you also get the FA 50/1.4!
06-26-2009, 06:43 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by deadwolfbones Quote
Ah, but that's why you also get the FA 50/1.4!
I've tried shooting in museums with the 50mm and it's too narrow. The 35mm works much better. I do use the 50mm for candids at house parties.
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