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12-25-2009, 08:54 AM   #1
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Pentaz A 28/2.8 VS FA 28/2.8 AL

I've came to like the 28mm perspective on the DSLRs very much. around 40mm equivalent for film, it would be my focal length of choice if I could have only one.
I have the manual focus A version and I like it very much, but I have the oportunity to get the FA version (a new lens, and expensive, but I don't see newer alternatives there).
So I'd like to know if there are big differences between teh two in terms of IQ, contrast, etc. I'd love to have the same lens with autofocus, because with teh regular screens critical focus is kind of a pain. But mainly I'd liek to know if, used on a K20D, the FA version has a correct exposure behavior. Because while theoretically the A version doesn't require green button metering it's still off and erratic depending on the aperture. If I can get good exposure and autofocus with similar IQ I'd go for the FA.
Opinions? (I've heard the FA has more field curvature, comments on that?)

12-26-2009, 02:19 AM   #2
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I had tried the FA28 and had chances to buy it some months ago but didn't since it focal length was already covered by my kit zoom lens. I only got interested in looking for a 28 again since I was unhappy on the images I was getting from my kit lens at 28mm. I had already a 12-24 which I was very satisfied all the way up to 24mm and have a 35mm, so the necessity for a 28mm was obvious.

the FA28 was a better and quite decent performer compared to my kit at 28mm. I don't think there is a real difference between the A and FA except for the AF capability. these are very good lenses, but if you can find yourself a 28/3.5, I would highly recommend that compared to it's f2.8 siblings.
12-26-2009, 02:34 AM   #3
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I have the FA 28mm f/2.8. Exposure in all exposure modes and apertures are spot on. AF is fast, definitely faster than focusing manually, which gives it the edge over the A version. Poor cousin to the more popular FA 35mm f/2 but I think it is a fine but underrated lens.

12-26-2009, 03:27 AM   #4
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An even better lens is the F28. We had a discussion recently:

12-26-2009, 06:36 AM   #5
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Original Poster
Thanks very much guys. I assume the IQ differences between lenses are marginal, and I could live with that. Knowing that with a little extra effort good results can be achieved is enough for specific demanding subjects as landscapes and such. What mattered most to me at this point is knowing if the FA lens would behave as a modern lens in terms of adjustment free photography, good autofocus, solid autoexposure, I love manual lenses, but at some points you need a solid auto performance (or you're lazy, that too!!)
12-26-2009, 09:15 AM   #6
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FA28/2.8 is the worst 28 mm lens of Pentax IMO. A bit better (or maybe not) than DA18-55@27 mm.

F28 is better in all aspects. A28 too. K28/3.5 is one of the best.

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