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10-01-2009, 07:30 AM   #31
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state of the game 10-1-2009

OK, so my attempt to compare the lenses "objectively" by giving numerical grades to the various factors that matter to me was a failure. The Sigma scored half a point higher, but my grades were (admittedly) somewhat subjective, so a half-point difference is a wash. I am sure I skewed the numbers slightly in Sigma's favor because I wanted to spend less. And indeed, I almost placed an order for the Sigma.

And then I discovered that I had been wrong not just about the prices of the Pentax 21 and 43, but also about the 77. I thought all of them were over $1000. Not so. The 77 is indeed pricey - about $785 right now at B&H and Adorama. That's about $300 more than the Sigma 70 and more than $200 more than the Pentax 70.

But the Pentax 77 has a couple extraordinary advantages. Build quality looks awesome. Image quality also awesome - it seems to be one of the great lenses of all time. But the decisive factor for me is that the 77 is an f/1.8 - a stop and a half faster than the Sigma 70 and, at least nominally, a good stop faster than the Pentax 70. And THAT would make a significant difference both to my portrait shooting and to what I can do in a church. Finally, the fact that it's slightly longer is also a slight advantage. And if I do get the 77, then that will almost guarantee that I will NOT consider the Tamron 90 but will look instead only at the Pentax 100 and Sigma 105.

Anyway, that's where my head is at this morning. Doing some billing, and may have to sell a little more gear than I was originally planning, to offset the greater cost of the 77. And, this being me, nothing is certain until the return date on the purchase has passed. I could change my mind and buy the Sigma later this afternoon just because it's viable. I'd tell myself I'll get the 77 later.

But for the moment, in the contest between 70A and 70B, the winner is ... 77!


10-01-2009, 03:36 PM   #32
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And an excellent winner it is!

The 77 is such an amazing lens just thinking about it makes me smile


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