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10-15-2009, 05:17 AM   #1
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77 and 31 Limited advice

Hi all:

I know these questions get asked a lot in a multitude of ways. And, I think I have read most threads, but I thought I would try for some additional help. I also recently have asked a couple of related lens questions, but remain stumped.

I have a k20d with DA* lenses, 55, 16-50 (being serviced right now due to AF failure), and the 50-135. I have been doing portrait work in my home studio and tend to use the 55, and generally am happy, but have been considering the 77 limited for headshots and the 31 limited for full body shots.

I already have the these focal lengths and I tend to use the 55 for most portraits. In the 55 I occasionally get bright specs/bubbles in the bokeh.

Can anyone give me advice re the DA*55 compared to the 77 limited, especially since I have read the 77 limited, and the 31 limited , have CA issues? Am I trading one issue for another and should just be happy with what I have?

I initially was very intent on getting the 31 limited given my space constraints at home and the frustrating AF of my 16-50, but the AF should be fixed and the lens itself is nice—so perhaps I am answering my own question.

I do some figure/fitness photography which tends to be full body, and perhaps a bit more to show the surroundings, so the 31 seemed like a nice focal length for my basement gym (where I take these types of photos). Any comparisons between the 16-50 and the 31 at the same focal length?

I appreciate any advice.

Thanx so much.

Gregg

10-15-2009, 05:50 AM   #2
Ari
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I was sort of in the same position. I have the 16-50 and do a lot of work in my home studio. I sold my 31ltd to fund a da*50-135, but found I wasn't using it that much. I sold it to fund the 77ltd purchase, and, while the focal length has it's limitations, the lens is just amazing. I am planning on keeping the 77 and purchasing the da*55 (for low light situations and because I like the focal length) and just purchased the da 60-250 (playing hooky to wait for ups today). I think you should keep the 55, buy the 77, forego the 31 (though in a studio environment, switching lenses isn't that big a chore) and look for either a fast tele (zoom or fixed) or go the other end and look at either the 12-24 or the sigma 10-20.
Hope that helps!
10-15-2009, 06:20 AM   #3
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If you *know* you will not use film why not get the DA 70 Limited? But you have all the FL's covered so perhaps save your money and use what you have. The FA 31 is a nice lens but is a lot of $$ unless you also use film.
10-15-2009, 06:59 AM   #4
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Pretty much any lens can be forced to have CA issues if you try hard enough. That's why there is a CA repair tool in the raw converter.
I love the internet, someone takes a virtually unphotographably backlit picture and then spews out that the lens has a CA problem.
Neither the 31 or 77 have CA problems, but they can be forced to show CA if you take the right picture.
Anyway, I have both the 70 and the 77. Both are nice lenses. The 77 is a bit faster, a bit longer and you can put filters onto it. The 70 is a bit slower and doesn't have any way of mounting a filter built into it.
The 70 AFs a bit better on the DLSRs I've used.
Overall, I prefer the 77 to the 70.
Unless you are really needing the extra stop and a bit of speed, save your money on the 31 and use your 16-50. While the 31 is as good a lens as you can buy from anyone, anywhere, by f/5.6 or so, you aren't really going to see much between it and your zoom once you start making prints.
I don't post pictures here often, this was shot with the 77.




Last edited by Wheatfield; 10-15-2009 at 07:33 AM.
10-15-2009, 07:22 AM   #5
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ANY fast lens will have CA. I'm unconviced by the photos I've seen that the DA*55 is that much better in that regard. That, and it's quite a big can of glass.

If you want an example of how bad it can get look for pics of the Canon 50mm f/1.2 wide open shooting a white on black subjects (or vice-versa). It's a $1.5k lens and CA is murderous.

OTOH shooting in a studio it's rather easy to control the situations which lead to the generation of CA and mitigate them. I don't think CA will ever be an issue to any studio photographer with a little practice. The proof is the Canon 50 f/1.2 continues to sell...
10-15-2009, 07:53 AM   #6
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The thing that I find most notable about CA is that I don't ever notice it in a picture unless I am looking for it specifically. If you aren't pixel peeping, and you are looking at the forest instead of trying to pick out each individual leaf it generally isn't an issue even when it occurs.
10-15-2009, 09:18 AM   #7
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Wait, Wheatfield! There's a CA repair tool in the raw converter? Which raw converter?
10-15-2009, 09:34 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by dadipentak Quote
Wait, Wheatfield! There's a CA repair tool in the raw converter? Which raw converter?
Camera RAW has CA built in. It's the tab that looks like the stack of lens elements. Make sure to select either Highlight Edges or All Edges and zoom in to around 200% to really see what the heck is going on. Also, use ALT (for PC) or Option (for Mac) while dragging the sliders to eliminate other colors, this is a really useful way to use the tool.

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10-15-2009, 09:57 AM   #9
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Thanks Rich I'll look for it when I get home.
10-15-2009, 10:51 AM   #10
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Thank you all

Hey:

Thanx so much for the great replies. I get the sense that if I do buy one of the lenses it should be the 77.

What makes it so difficult, and I am sure I am not the only who faces this, is that it is almost impossible "to try before you buy." I tried a Sigma 24 1.8 and was very dissapointed. I also trued the Tamron 90 2.8. It was a nice lens, but did nothing more than the 50-135.

I am trying not to do what I initially did in my early telescope days and that was to buy super high end eyepieces and then be dissapointed that I did not marvel at the "spacewalk" I was supposed to take. It can be hard, though, when I can only read about the lenses and not try them, especially in Central Maine

Thanx so much again.

Gregg
10-15-2009, 10:53 AM   #11
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I don't think you'll be disappointed in the 77mm
10-15-2009, 11:18 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Anyway, I have both the 70 and the 77. Both are nice lenses. The 77 is a bit faster, a bit longer and you can put filters onto it. The 70 is a bit slower and doesn't have any way of mounting a filter built into it.
]
My DA 70 takes 49mm filters just where it takes its screw in lens hood.
10-15-2009, 12:50 PM   #13
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Get them both, the 77mm and the 31mm.

Get the 77mm first, then the 31mm (because of price and the 16-50mm).

They come with magic.

10-15-2009, 02:26 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by PrimeObjectif Quote
My DA 70 takes 49mm filters just where it takes its screw in lens hood.
Really? I never knew that. I like the 70 a little more now.
Thanks
10-15-2009, 05:09 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by kcmadr Quote
Get them both, the 77mm and the 31mm.

...

They come with magic.
That is going on my list of quotes
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