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05-31-2007, 05:47 PM   #1
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FA 50 or DA 40? Which one?

ok, this may have been discussed threads back but i want to ask you guys which lens would you prefer. the 50 1.4 or the 40 2.8? i planning to use it for portraiture and probably walk-around lens. price difference isn't too much. and another thing, will it be better to get a DA70 instead of the 50 or 40? thanks.

05-31-2007, 08:05 PM   #2
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portraiture then I would say DA70, but then that isn't great as a walk around. For me the FA35 is the ideal walk-around. It is good enough in low light (f2.0) and the right FOV (equiv 50mm'ish)

I sold my 50 after I got the DA70.. It was very prone to blooming (well the combo of it and the K10d/k100d) and I found the DA70 was more consistant across the whole frame..
05-31-2007, 09:04 PM   #3
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Joele, can you give an example of blooming? I'm not sure what that is.
06-01-2007, 12:09 AM   #4
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I would have to search through my pictures at home for actual FA50 ones..

But blooming description

Blooming: Digital Imaging: Glossary: Learn: Digital Photography Review

Its hard to say if it was CA or blooming by the sensor, to be honest I think it was probably a combination of the two, I used the term a bit too loosely before.. But either way if something was strongly backlit there was purple everywhere. Worse than any other Pentax or Sigma lens I have owned or used... The FA28 comes second in this regard, yet the FA35 doesn't seem to have a real problem at all..


Last edited by joele; 06-01-2007 at 04:12 AM.
06-01-2007, 01:39 AM   #5
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I borrowed Joel's Fa 50 f1.4 for a period and this lens which is brand new produces beautiful images only when the setting is dark lit surrounding.

The lens is almost not usable in bright light, flare and fringeing terribly even stepping down the apertures.

Like Fa 24 f2, I would only use these old primes indoor or under an overcast sky.

I doubt Da 40 f2.8 would produce that effect but who is going to have a prime 40 mm (cheapest focal length to make) at aperture of f2.8 (many 3rd party zooms also have f2.8 producing similar quality of photos). I guess this Da 40 is for someone who loves something light and handy to carry

Cheers
06-01-2007, 06:04 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by roentarre Quote
I borrowed Joel's Fa 50 f1.4 for a period and this lens which is brand new produces beautiful images only when the setting is dark lit surrounding.

The lens is almost not usable in bright light, flare and fringeing terribly even stepping down the apertures.
i really have a hard time accepting that as truth unless he has the worst one ever produced by pentax; or it's user error.

if you're shooting wide open outside then use an nd filter. all of my pictures taken with this lens in a well lit scene lack ca and flare. all of my fa50 f1.4 pics
06-01-2007, 07:00 AM   #7
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I have to agree with Roentarre. I have the FA 50 f1.4 and I absolutely love it to bits. Dark lit setting photos have been a pleasure to my eye. In addition, I am generally pleased with the photos I have taken in day light.

My challenge however is the mix of bright and dark areas. For example, try taking a photo of someone sitting in front of a window. OK, I'm not a professional photographer and may be you will scream at me for composing such a shot since it is generally recommended that you take such a shot from the side not directly pointing at the window but this presupposes that you have the possibility or reorganising the subject or yourself. Sometimes u just wanna take a shot. In such circumstances, the FA 50 f1.4 has let me down


Thankfully, Attack11 has a two pics that show what I'm trying to say. Please allow me to use them to demonstrate my point

a. What I would like to shoot but have generally failed (I have tweaked the exposure but still I'm not convinced): Grandpa on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

b. How I try to deal with this lighting situation: Rocking on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Again, I'm just a regular guy so with a lot to learn so I will be watching (and hopefully learning)
06-01-2007, 07:48 AM   #8
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neither pic has chromatic abberation or sensor flare. that's just bad composition. i wasn't telling either to setup for the pic, i just took a snapshot of em.

if you actually expect inside to be the same as outside, you don't understand the light (metering). you'd need to take multiple exposures and merge into an hdr.

fyi, my gramps was shot with spot metering because the room was dark and that big window had the sun nearly directly outside. the rocking pic is with matrix metering.

if you don't meter for the scene, the results will not be what you want.


Last edited by attack11; 06-01-2007 at 08:03 AM.
06-01-2007, 07:56 AM   #9
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anyways, wide open at the sun will give you CA with the fa50 f1.4; and that's why i have nd filters

stop down the light without changing the aperture = what you want.
06-01-2007, 01:22 PM   #10
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I have the DA40 and the FA50 and I tend to agree that the 40 handles bright light better (no purple... wherever it comes from). Based on my concept of "overall image quality" (many factors involved), I'd keep the 40 if I could keep only one of the lenses. However, the 50 is physically much nicer to use (for manual focus) due to the tiny size of the 40. Also, if you need below 2.8, the 40 is out. Under uniform lighting conditions either is excellent, and I'm keeping both.
06-02-2007, 08:20 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by attack11 Quote
neither pic has chromatic abberation or sensor flare. that's just bad composition. i wasn't telling either to setup for the pic, i just took a snapshot of em.

if you actually expect inside to be the same as outside, you don't understand the light (metering). you'd need to take multiple exposures and merge into an hdr.

fyi, my gramps was shot with spot metering because the room was dark and that big window had the sun nearly directly outside. the rocking pic is with matrix metering.

if you don't meter for the scene, the results will not be what you want.
Thanks for both posts. Indeed, I am clueless on light metering and Like I said, I still have a lot to learn. Just got myself a copy of Bryan Peterson's Understanding exposure book today. I reckon my road to enlightenment just begun
06-02-2007, 06:07 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by attack11 Quote
anyways, wide open at the sun will give you CA with the fa50 f1.4; and that's why i have nd filters

stop down the light without changing the aperture = what you want.
Well, neutral density filter can dampen down the fringeing but even with 3+ strength is not sufficient to rid of its effect.

Stopping down the aperture to f5.6 or above would be a safer option but it sort of leaves little purpose of owning a fast prime like this.

BTW I believe the copy I had was not a bad copy and the ciritcism of this lens is common place. This is not to say Fa 50 is a bad lens. It is just demonstrating its strength and weakness when extra precausions are to be noted under certain circumstances.
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