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09-23-2009, 07:22 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
1.> the 28-70 is better in terms of build ,color and bokeh.
2.> the FA* 200 is ultra-sharp as opposed to the DA* 200 which is quite soft at wide and very useful for cropping. again, build is better, for me. so I'm considering this one for myself better than purchasing a DA* 300. just can't afford the FA* 300 2.8. that would had been a treat if it were available and cheaper.
Interesting, I wasn't aware of this and would not have expected this either given that the DA*200 supposedly shares the same optical formula with the FA*200? Also, I remember one review comparing the DA*200 and DA*300 where the reviewer felt that the DA*200 was sharper wide open than the DA*300.

That said, I am hesitant to say that my FA*200 is "ultra-sharp" wide-open however mine was FF or BF on my K20D and I didn't realize this until very recently. I need to get out and do some more shooting!

09-23-2009, 07:33 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by wlachan Quote
It is funny back in the film days, the FA*28-70/2.8 was considered to be inferior to the Canon and Nikon offering. AF was slow, and extended plastic barrel and the PZ mechanism were fragile. Now anything FA* are being hyped up. Personally I think the Tamron is the best optically but the build quality of Tamron AF lenses are never great and AF is kind of erratic.
Thanks for the reminder Alan, I seem to recall that from my film days as well.

QuoteOriginally posted by wlachan Quote
I do not know how fast the DA*200 AF but the FA* versions AF quite fast for body driven AF, and there is nothing to fail (unlike SDM). Having the aperture ring means it can be used on other systems like 4/3 or EOS via adaptors. The downside is that this lens (or any FA*) is not sealed and dust does sneak in, and the silver paint if very prone to scratch too.
I had not considered compatibility with other mounts and demand from "camera hackers" such as m4/3 users, though can you imagine how out of place these FA* lenses would look on a camera such as the E-P1!

Thanks for your insight, and my apologies to the OP for taking this thread off-topic.
09-23-2009, 08:23 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by photogerald Quote
Interesting, I wasn't aware of this and would not have expected this either given that the DA*200 supposedly shares the same optical formula with the FA*200? Also, I remember one review comparing the DA*200 and DA*300 where the reviewer felt that the DA*200 was sharper wide open than the DA*300.

That said, I am hesitant to say that my FA*200 is "ultra-sharp" wide-open however mine was FF or BF on my K20D and I didn't realize this until very recently. I need to get out and do some more shooting!
that maybe the reason for it. a bit of adjustment would make a lot of difference optically speaking and more sense to get an ultra-sharp result. I think Adam also has a copy and you might want to get his opinion on the matter as well. from what I have experienced so far with Pentax lenses, having the same optical formula doesn't give you the same exact result. there is quite a noticeable difference a way or two. either less or better.
09-23-2009, 08:36 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by wlachan Quote
It is funny back in the film days, the FA*28-70/2.8 was considered to be inferior to the Canon and Nikon offering. AF was slow, and extended plastic barrel and the PZ mechanism were fragile. Now anything FA* are being hyped up. Personally I think the Tamron is the best optically but the build quality of Tamron AF lenses are never great and AF is kind of erratic.



I do not know how fast the DA*200 AF but the FA* versions AF quite fast for body driven AF, and there is nothing to fail (unlike SDM). Having the aperture ring means it can be used on other systems like 4/3 or EOS via adaptors. The downside is that this lens (or any FA*) is not sealed and dust does sneak in, and the silver paint if very prone to scratch too.
the question is, are the FA* worth the hype? I believe this is pretty subjective, depending on what is given more value. the Tammy is generally considered as a best performer overall optically, especially in sharpness. colors is debatable since I don't find it pleasing eversince, even in other systems. but as you've mentioned, it has a poor build and troublesome AF. optical brilliance is not just the only thing that is being sought after.

if I may ask, why did some people considered the FA* inferior to the other brands during the film days?

are the FA* much better used in dslr rather than film slr? this is of course if we are going to disregard the FOV and DOF.

09-23-2009, 08:59 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
the question is, are the FA* worth the hype? I believe this is pretty subjective, depending on what is given more value. the Tammy is generally considered as a best performer overall optically, especially in sharpness. colors is debatable since I don't find it pleasing eversince, even in other systems. but as you've mentioned, it has a poor build and troublesome AF. optical brilliance is not just the only thing that is being sought after.

if I may ask, why did some people considered the FA* inferior to the other brands during the film days?

are the FA* much better used in dslr rather than film slr? this is of course if we are going to disregard the FOV and DOF.
The FA*200/2.8 was tested by a famous Japanese magazine CAPA and everything about this lens is fine, except it was beaten by Canon, Nikon and Minolta for wide open sharpness. Being an owner also used it on film, I tend to agree it is not particular sharp wide open. But this is not much of an issue since PP can alter the shots a great deal now. Other popular FA* like 24/2, was never a strong performer. It wasn't sharp until f4, bokeh is bad, flare control is a little weak for a SMC lens, but it was an awesome deal for the price. 85/1.4 was designed for portrait, and does poorly for landscape or macro on extension tubes. 300/4.5 is an odd lens being w/o the lens collar consider most people didn't have sturdy enough tripod/head. Pentax's explanation was that it was designed for handhold, but the lack of SR back then made this rather difficult. As to other FA* like 200/4 macro, 400/5.6, 300/2.8, 600/4 & 250-600/5.6, the 1st 2 came to the market rather late and the rest were expensive and not really what most Pentax users interested in. The truth is, those who could afford that much would probably go Canon or Nikon for better AF. This was not the Pentax domain, and still is not I am afraid.

Just before the digital era, all the Pentax lenses, * or not, did not attract much attention on eBay and there were many reasonable deals. Still, you wouldn't get excited because nobody seemed to be interested in. But since the DS, Pentax users have started to soak them up and the prices inflated quickly, so is the hypes. Anything * automatically became magic and command premium on used market. Whether they worth that much is up to the individuals to decide.
09-23-2009, 09:49 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by wlachan Quote
The FA*200/2.8 was tested by a famous Japanese magazine CAPA and everything about this lens is fine, except it was beaten by Canon, Nikon and Minolta for wide open sharpness. Being an owner also used it on film, I tend to agree it is not particular sharp wide open. But this is not much of an issue since PP can alter the shots a great deal now. Other popular FA* like 24/2, was never a strong performer. It wasn't sharp until f4, bokeh is bad, flare control is a little weak for a SMC lens, but it was an awesome deal for the price. 85/1.4 was designed for portrait, and does poorly for landscape or macro on extension tubes. 300/4.5 is an odd lens being w/o the lens collar consider most people didn't have sturdy enough tripod/head. Pentax's explanation was that it was designed for handhold, but the lack of SR back then made this rather difficult. As to other FA* like 200/4 macro, 400/5.6, 300/2.8, 600/4 & 250-600/5.6, the 1st 2 came to the market rather late and the rest were expensive and not really what most Pentax users interested in. The truth is, those who could afford that much would probably go Canon or Nikon for better AF. This was not the Pentax domain, and still is not I am afraid.

Just before the digital era, all the Pentax lenses, * or not, did not attract much attention on eBay and there were many reasonable deals. Still, you wouldn't get excited because nobody seemed to be interested in. But since the DS, Pentax users have started to soak them up and the prices inflated quickly, so is the hypes. Anything * automatically became magic and command premium on used market. Whether they worth that much is up to the individuals to decide.
I do agree with you that the Pentax lenses have really increased significantly during the digital age, and even more so recently. the demand for Pentax wasn't that high at all, especially when the mid 80's came in. as far as in comparison with other lens brand, in some way, the FA* is or maybe slightly inferior especially with regards to sharpness, but not all of the Pentax lenses in general as far as I'm concerned. and besides, we don't use Canikopus lenses for the Pentax system. Pentax lens against Pentax lens, I'm pretty sure that there is a difference and the features that one lens have over the other dictates the price for it.

anyway, I don't think that all LTD's (FA/DA) either are better optically than their older counterparts. some are better and some are not, but the build and speed affects their price tag as well. as far as computer program PP is concerned, I don't think that one must undergo such results inorder to achieve sharpness. the possibility that the lens could perform and achieve better results on a dslr is not fiction, IMO.
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