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02-14-2010, 10:31 AM   #1
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Lack of LBA

In the last few months, a very interesting phenomenon occured to me - lack of LBA.
After my recent purchases of the Tamron 70-210 SP 3.5 and the Samyang 85mm 1.4, I really honestly do not lust after more lenses, even ones that I had considered before.

A50 1.2? Nah, A50 1.7 is good enough.
Pentax DA* 60-250/4? Much bigger than the Tamron, do not need the wide end, not much longer.
Tamron 70-200/2.8? Well, it is faster by about a stop (the 70-210 is best starting at F4), but I would rarely need to use it.
31mm ltd? The 35/2 works just fine and the bokeh is good enough.

But, there are two reasons for this change:
a) The K-x and being able to shoot at ISO 1600 and 3200 without worries.
b) Installation of a split-focusing screen.

What I find is that for decent people shots, I usally need to dial-in F/2.8 anyway. In the past, I often went to F/2 because I did not have enough light for the K10D. For certain artistic shots, I have 3 focal lengths where I can go down to F/2 or better.

In any case, I am still impressed at how inexpensive some of the gear can still be (The Tamron Adaptall was rather cheap) and still get excellent results.

02-14-2010, 12:46 PM   #2
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wanting and needing are different from each other.
aside from LBA, lens acquisition also relies on the intended use and purpose that you need the lens for. factors such as focal length, DOF, condition, situation, lens function/capability/features, and etc... are considered.

here are my personal thoughts that regarding the lenses that you've mentioned. mind you that I both suffer from LBA and the necessity to have the lens as well.

any 1.2 lenses - acquired generally due to it's rarity and distinction and for bragging rights. aside from that, it is purchased by some due to it's shallow DOF, brighter, and it's special OOF wide open rendering that a 1.7 nor the 1.4 can replicate. this is a special purpose lens, but it is useful for general shooting as a standard normal lens for people who only want or need a single 50mm lens. it is great for portraiture as well and a great performer overall. although this is only advisable for people who could/would shoot manually. honestly, it's the best manual focus 50mm lens, IMO.

Pentax DA*60-250 - it's Weather-resistant, HSM and versatile. this lens is for those who want or need a 2 zoom lens setup. if you don't mind not having HSM and WR feature, the Sigma/Tamron 70-200 (+TC option) are better and cheaper alternatives. but you can also get a DA55-300 which is a very good lens for a much more cheaper price, if you don't mind the variable aperture.

Tamron 70-200 - for those who need a cheaper but superior IQ lens. also useful for a 2 lens setup. I might consider this in the future, because of it's constant aperture, IQ and most importantly, it's versatility. but right now, I'll pass on this one since I'm on a lens hiatus, unless I see one selling for $400 or less, I might get one immediately.

FA31 - I like and want to have the lens for it's sharpness, overall IQ, bokeh or OOF rendering, focal length, overall usability, build, compactness and ultimately it's AF function. but it doesn't make me want it so bad or even need it that I'm willing to pay for what it costs right now. the FA35 will do the sharpness rendering, while the 1.2 will deal with the bokeh rendering.




as far as my other lenses are concerned, here are my thoughts about them.

DA12-24 - ultrawide use. excellent IQ.
DA18-55 WR - WR, good IQ. versatility, might consider selling.
K28/3.5 - focal length, good bokeh rendering, got this for free
FA35 - autofocus, focal length, sharpness
A50/1.2 - OOF rendering, overall 50mm usability
FA50/1.7- sharpness, autofocus
Sigma 70/2.8 - macro sharpness, ideal short tele focal range usability for portraiture. got this cheap.
85/1.4 - shallow DOF, focal length
FA100 - macro and telephoto use.
FA135 - fast AF, street photography. find the 100mm short in some occasion.
DA55-300 - excellent versatility and very good IQ, light and small. downside, only crippled by it's slower variable aperture. the next big thing after the DA*60-250, if the Tamron/Sigma are not considered. otherwise, might get the Tamron.

update:

I forgot to mention 2 more lenses.

M50/2 - mistook it for an f1.2 when I first made the switch from Nikon. let's say I was unfamiliar with the Pentax lens setup during that time. I was then puzzled why it was selling cheap and not performing the way I was hoping it to be (IQ-wise, DOF). was also surprised when I checked the aperture ring starts at f2. darn print, Pentax should had made it F2 rather than 1:2. btw, I didn't like the overall resolution and color rendering. it's good up close but is a poor performer when given a task of shooting mid-full infinity.

K55/1.8 - got this one for free again. runs 2nd fiddle or as back-up to the A50/1.2. great resolution and overall rendering (bokeh and colors). much easier to focus compared to the f1.2. I use this for general walk-around when I don't need the f1.2 for creative shooting or afraid to scratch of dent the f1.2 in places that are deemed hazardous. the K50/1.8 is much better than the f1.7 when ultra-sharpness at wide open is not your concern but rather overall smooth rendering.

Last edited by Pentaxor; 02-14-2010 at 02:08 PM.
02-14-2010, 01:15 PM   #3
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Don't worry...LBA will return...it always does...


Steve

(BTW...You have a pretty plush setup. I have been tempted to do something pretty similar...)
02-14-2010, 01:55 PM   #4
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I thought my LBA was improving but then I brought 4 more lenses in 3 days (Shhhh, don't tell The Boss). However I finally got a helios 9 (which I have been after for some time) and for a sensible price so it isnt all bad.

02-14-2010, 02:18 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Don't worry...LBA will return...it always does...


Steve

(BTW...You have a pretty plush setup. I have been tempted to do something pretty similar...)

akh... I hope not.

which pretty similar path? lens hiatus or lens line-up?

btw, I like you FA77.
I just might replace the 85/1.4 and Sigma 70/2.8 with it. but not soon, unless someone sells one for $400 or less.

reasons: small/compact size, build, IQ and overall rendering, fast AF, and the f1.8 aperture speed (1/2 stop slower) will do. as long as subject isolation is rendered nicely and also display a nice pop (3d effect) on the image.
02-14-2010, 02:27 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote

...which pretty similar path? lens hiatus or lens line-up?

btw, I like you FA77.
I just might replace the 85/1.4 and Sigma 70/2.8 with it. but not soon, unless someone sells one for $400 or less.

...
Similar path. I have considered keeping the FA 35/2 and FA 77/1.8, selling most of the rest, and getting the DA* 50-135 and DA*16-50. Of course, LBA says to keep all of the rest because I can use them on film and getting the DA 15/4 Limited and DA 10-17 Fisheye just for the hang of it

As for the FA 77...I really like the lens. It is one of the few purchases I have made that truly lived up to the hype.

Steve
02-14-2010, 02:28 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by MattGunn Quote
...However I finally got a helios 9 (which I have been after for some time) and for a sensible price so it isnt all bad.
The price is always sensible, you know that!

Steve

BTW...what is a Helios 9? That is a new one to me. Diving torch/lamp?
02-14-2010, 02:59 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
The price is always sensible, you know that!

Steve

BTW...what is a Helios 9? That is a new one to me. Diving torch/lamp?
Doh!, should have read Jupiter 9, one of the other recent aquisitions was a Helios 28mm (also I was investigating the Helios 40 but but don't have the cash - yet).

02-14-2010, 03:03 PM   #9
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my self-imposed conditions on acquiring a lens inorder to control LBA or avoid buying a lens inappropriately or indiscriminately and also put into effect my lens hiatus are the ff:

* lens must be atleast half the price of the market value. half-price value must not go beyond $700. like if the lens market price costs at around $1300-$1500. and must be according to the lens market price in the U.S. , not Canada. lens prices here are way jacked-up.
lens acquisition exceptions also are the SDM zoom lens which I'm not willing to buy even at a bargain.

* usability. do I really need the lens at such focal length/s. zoom,prime, speed.

* rarity. must go along with usability and price.

so far, I don't need a 17-50,24-70, 28-75, 70-200, 100-300, and 50-500.

the only reason or time that I would get a 17-50, 70-200 and a prime 300 is when I would sell all my existing lenses. well, probably I'll keep one prime like the FA35/2 or buy a DA40/2.8 for the same price I'll be selling the FA35/2. need a small prime lenses for casual situations.
02-14-2010, 03:20 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Similar path. I have considered keeping the FA 35/2 and FA 77/1.8, selling most of the rest, and getting the DA* 50-135 and DA*16-50. Of course, LBA says to keep all of the rest because I can use them on film and getting the DA 15/4 Limited and DA 10-17 Fisheye just for the hang of it

As for the FA 77...I really like the lens. It is one of the few purchases I have made that truly lived up to the hype.

Steve
I forgot to mention one of the most important thing why I might consider the FA77 is it's focal length. I find the 70mm a lil short sometimes and hope that I had that extra mm reach to get the shot. an additional 7mm would do the job, IMO. also the fact that the lens is very flexible when used with an APS-C camera and a FF dslr for wider FOV.

here are my options if ever I'll sell most of my entire lens lineup. Tamron 17-50/2.8, FA35/2 or DA40/2.8, Tamron 70-200/2.8, Tamron 1.4x AF TC or FA*300/4.5 (if available), or else DA*300/4. so I'll probably end up with 3-4 lenses which is great, IMO.
02-14-2010, 03:24 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by MattGunn Quote
Doh!, should have read Jupiter 9, one of the other recent aquisitions was a Helios 28mm (also I was investigating the Helios 40 but but don't have the cash - yet).
I think it would be wise to save for an FA77 instead. manual focusing can be increasingly difficult as time goes on.

also, you might find that auto-metering is extremely critically useful when the demand for it arises. you can't expect to stop down meter all of the time with the Helios, do you? the price you pay for such convenience.
02-14-2010, 03:55 PM   #12
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FA77 would b nice but is 750 with discount in UK and the Jupiter 9 was 40, although I will have to fix the aperture before I can use it. If I had the money for a Helios 40 I'd probably go for the Samyang or something completely different.
02-14-2010, 05:04 PM   #13
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Shooting with fast shutter speeds is only one reason to have fast lenses. The ability to get narrow depth of field is another. LBA is a disease that afflicts different people in different amounts. I would say that I have a mild case. There are lenses that I want/am saving for, but I am unlikely to sell any of my kids to get them.

On the other hand, it is amazing how different your camera will shoot with one lens versus another on it. The bokeh, the rendering. It is like you have a different camera when all you have done is change the lens.

I would say that I envy most, not other's lenses, but their ability to capture such beautiful photos with the lenses they have.
02-14-2010, 05:41 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by MattGunn Quote
FA77 would b nice but is 750 with discount in UK and the Jupiter 9 was 40, although I will have to fix the aperture before I can use it. If I had the money for a Helios 40 I'd probably go for the Samyang or something completely different.
I dunno how much the Helios 40 costs there, but on eBay, the Helios 40 and Samyang price aren't that far-off from each other. I think the Helios is $50 more. the only thing that you should consider is to choose between better overall IQ versus auto-aperture and metering control.
02-14-2010, 05:56 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Don't worry...LBA will return...it always does...


Steve

(BTW...You have a pretty plush setup. I have been tempted to do something pretty similar...)
The FA 77mm and DA* 300mm slowed me way down. Although it could just be that I'm broker than shit.

Edit: I did pickup a 44-2 but that don't count since it was only a few bucks.
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