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07-28-2009, 05:28 PM   #1
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DA70 or 77???

I know the 77 limited has a huge reputation but it is so expensive in Australia($1100) that I need to ask you pentaxians who have or have had both of these lenses wether it is worth it compared to the $550 DA70 limited?

It will be mainly used for portraits.

Please advise,
Jack.

07-28-2009, 06:30 PM   #2
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I'd recommend using the search facility here and at dpreview. I'll bet there have been a hundred threads at least on this very topic.

Faced with the same decision, I went for the DA70 hands down - none of the advantages of the FA77 even came close to justifying the difference in cost or having to give up quick shift or being twice the weight. Someone who really loves shallow DOF photography would probably see the almost one stop advantage of the FA77 as being the thing that makes it worthwhile, but for my purposes, DOF below f/2.4 is too shallow to se for normal purposes (and I've got an A50/1.7 for the rare occasion when I really want to get shallower DOF).

Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 07-29-2009 at 10:08 AM.
07-28-2009, 06:38 PM   #3
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Oooh! Oooooh! I know this one, I know this one!

You should buy the one that you will be happiest with. I know it sounds trite, but Marc is right: there are very few reasons why you should get the 77/1.8 instead of the 70/2.4. For instance, there's that tiny bit of difference in bokeh, the tiny difference in shutter speeds from f/1.8 and f/2.4, the tiny difference in focal length from 70 to 77. So if you don't think you'll miss these, and if you like the fact that the 70 is smaller and lighter and quicker to focus (I say this with no information to back me up, just my use of both), then go with the 70.

But if you think you'll find yourself looking at a photo taken at f/2.4 and wondering if you could have gotten better bokeh at f/1.8...or if you've seen a photo taken with the 77/1.8 that just knocked your socks off and you find yourself thinking of that photo at odd moments and wishing you had taken it...or if you find yourself loving how the FA limiteds do their jobs, even though you can't quantify it or define it - then go for the 77/1.8. Life is too short for regrets.

I have both; I love the 77. I cherish the 77. And I still find myself using the 70 often because it's smaller, lighter, and more than capable, even at f/2.4. But I do like to shoot wide-open, so I know the 77 is there when I need its magic.

They are both fantastic lenses, and I think you'll be happy with whichever you choose.
07-28-2009, 06:53 PM   #4
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Both are great lenses and I have used both. We can't decide for you if size, weight, focal length, 1.8 vrs 2.4, quick shift, etc. are relevant to your photography - that you'll have to do yourself.

Given the choice (and I had the same choice) I chose the 77 - it's images are spectacular and there is no lens like it (save the *85's that are waayyy more expensive). That being said, the cost wasn't 2x's the price in Canada when I chose...only $50 CDN difference between the two lenses.

Also of note (if important to you), the DA70 is more like 68mm and the reported 2.4 is actually closer to 2.8 in testing. The DA70 does focus quicker though.

Check around the web at various pics taken with the two to help you. Your decision is an age old one and has been discussed many times here.

Good luck!

c[_]

07-28-2009, 07:35 PM   #5
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I have both, so I just use whichever one strikes my fancy. I like that I can put a polarizing filter on the 77.
07-28-2009, 07:58 PM   #6
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The 77 is magic. I haven't shot the 70.

The 77 is magic.

Did I mention the magic part?
07-28-2009, 08:17 PM   #7
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As everyone has agreed, the 77 is magic.
There's nothing wrong with the 70 either - sharp, beautiful rendition - can't fault it.
I have the 77, and chose it over the 70 for no other reasons than ability to go f/1.8 and the nostaliga attached to the FA ltd series.

Being in Australia too, I decided (as I do with most of my gear) to buy it through this forum's marketplace at a fraction of the cost to that available locally.

Enjoy deciding!
07-28-2009, 08:25 PM   #8
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Looking at the flickr of shots from DA 70 makes me want to get this lens... but I already have the Tammy 28-75 so range wise there's no reason to get this lens! Argh

I need to constantly remind myself to get DA 21 first...

07-29-2009, 03:56 AM   #9
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I got the 77mm because I like to shoot with shallow DOF and I would be using it mainly for 35mm film.
07-29-2009, 06:25 AM   #10
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Many threads on this topic, but it is really one of the most difficult choices in Pentax-prime land. I chose the DA 70, and couldn't be happier. It seems to have a magic of its own, as it seems to literally never take a bad shot. I pop my DA 70 on frequently as an outdoor lens, whether going to a playground or pool with my kids, or some other outdoor event, and it never disappoints. I know I can hand my K200 with DA 70 off to my wife (who is afraid of my K200), and she'll feel comfortable with it and take great photos herself. But as between the DA 70 and FA 77, one cannot lose in this selection.

As to the poster with the Tamron 28-75, I can say that the DA 70 is a wonderful complement to that lens (and any walk-around zoom lens). The 28-75 is not a particularly small or light lens, so the DA 70 is a great option to have around when you'll be walking about and want a lighter kit.
07-29-2009, 08:22 AM   #11
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thanks

thanks for starting this thread, i've been waiting for someone to ask the same question. i still have to make up my mind. i think what is stopping me from getting the DA vs FA is wanting to have one of the classic greats vs price vs what-if-i-get-a-full-frame later.

just thought i'd share.
07-29-2009, 10:15 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by K McCall Quote
But if you think you'll find yourself looking at a photo taken at f/2.4 and wondering if you could have gotten better bokeh at f/1.8...or if you've seen a photo taken with the 77/1.8 that just knocked your socks off and you find yourself thinking of that photo at odd moments and wishing you had taken it...or if you find yourself loving how the FA limiteds do their jobs, even though you can't quantify it or define it - then go for the 77/1.8. Life is too short for regrets.

I have both; I love the 77. I cherish the 77. And I still find myself using the 70 often because it's smaller, lighter, and more than capable, even at f/2.4. But I do like to shoot wide-open, so I know the 77 is there when I need its magic.
Interesting, Keitha - I seem to recall in previous versions of this discussion, you said you never used your 70 any more. I actually considered offering to buy yours from you when you moved, since that was right when I was getting ready to buy one.

There is of course the FA Limited "pixie dust" theory - the indescribable thing people love about the images from the 77 more than 70 (and 43 more than the 40), even aside from the wider aperture. I'm enough of a Neanderthal not to see it: "oog, picture look just like my cat, must be good lens" :-). That's why I didn't mention it in my previous post, but it is pretty commonly observed. Whether it's worth several hundred dollars or not is another matter.
07-29-2009, 10:38 AM   #13
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Hi Jack,
My advise is based on my own experience.
You have 3 options: a) if you have enough $$$ get both or b) get one of those gems or c) wait for upcoming EA 73.5 F2.0 Ltd Super
Good luck with whatever you decide,
07-29-2009, 12:30 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Interesting, Keitha - I seem to recall in previous versions of this discussion, you said you never used your 70 any more. I actually considered offering to buy yours from you when you moved, since that was right when I was getting ready to buy one.

There is of course the FA Limited "pixie dust" theory - the indescribable thing people love about the images from the 77 more than 70 (and 43 more than the 40), even aside from the wider aperture. I'm enough of a Neanderthal not to see it: "oog, picture look just like my cat, must be good lens" :-). That's why I didn't mention it in my previous post, but it is pretty commonly observed. Whether it's worth several hundred dollars or not is another matter.
You know, Marc, every time this topic comes up, I switch out whichever one I'm using. Like last month, Jens and I went to Frankfurt, and I took the DA 70, and I got some shots that are (in my opinion) delicious, and I don't see how the FA 77 could have done a better job. In fact, I daresay that with the slower focusing, the 77 wouldn't have done as good a job.

But then after I wrote this, I decided to take the DA 70 out of the bag and replace it with the FA 77. I took it to the forest near my house today, and I took this shot with it:



...and I remembered why I love it so much. I don't think the DA 70 would have quite done this shot the same way. They're two different lenses for me.

You reminded me about another really important consideration: price. I think that, realistically, there are only a very few shots that the 77 can outdo the 70 for - and the same is true the other way around. So it just becomes a matter of what is important to you and just how much you value that.
07-29-2009, 01:10 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by K McCall Quote
For instance, there's [...] the tiny difference in shutter speeds from f/1.8 and f/2.4
I thought I'd be a bit anal and point out that the difference in max apertures is 0.83 stops. That means you can use a shutter speed almost twice as fast with the 77 Ltd.

Just sayin'...
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