Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
03-04-2010, 07:18 PM   #1
Forum Member




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Salisnury, Canada
Posts: 68
Which 50mm manual focus is best

There is so much information on this forum to search, that I better ask this question.
Could somebody give me their opinion, which of he following three 50 mm manual focus lenses, which I happen to have in my "oldies" collection, would be best with Pentax DSLR:
SMC Pentax KA 1:2 50mm, Made in Taiwan
SMC Pentax-M 1:1:7 50 mm, Made in Japan
Super Takumar 1:1.4 50 mm, Made in Japan
How do they measure up with the standard kit lenses like the 18-55 DA in terms of resolution and contrast?
Thanks,

03-04-2010, 07:35 PM   #2
Veteran Member




Join Date: Sep 2006
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,713
I own both the Super Takumar 1:1.4 50 mm and the M-mount 1:2 50mm, and they're honestly both good lenses.
I use the Super tak for more artistic stuff, however when I want a reversed lens for close up photography it's the M-mount that I'll grab first.
I did get them both for free, however they've both earned me a fair amount of $.
03-04-2010, 08:31 PM   #3
Pentaxian
JohnBee's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: front of computer
Posts: 4,598
I find the SMC-A 1.4 to be the best blend of cost and performance. It has punch, great bokeh and sharpens right up there with the best of them. However, if money was no object, then I'd say the SMC-A 1.2 is a hands down winner.
03-04-2010, 08:34 PM   #4
Veteran Member
GoremanX's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Georgia, VT
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,653
Personally, I don't think there's any comparison between the kit lens and a Super Takumar 50mm F1.4. The ST has vastly superior resolution and contrast. Here's an example from a scene I was working on earlier. Both of these were taken from the exact same tripod position and both were focused manually very carefully. The first is from my Super Takumar:
Name:  GORE5835.jpg
Views: 3004
Size:  201.3 KB

And the second one if from my 18-55 WR kit lens:
Name:  GORE5836.jpg
Views: 4259
Size:  158.7 KB

The first thing that strikes me between these two pictures is that the angle of view is slightly different. My kit lens at 50mm gives me a slightly wider field of view than my Super Takumar. I tend to think the Super Takumar is more accurate in this case. Unfortunately, the kit lens picked up an annoying border along the top as a result.

The second thing I notice is that reflections are picked up differently by the two lenses. Look especially at the front wheel of the car in the background. The Super Takumar picked up some reflections differently than the kit lens did. They're much brighter with the Super Takumar. It also blurred them into hexagonal bokeh, since that's the shape of the aperture iris. This can be less pleasing in some cases.

As far as contrast, the kit lens made the car seem darker than the Super Takumar did. It tends to look more bland with the kit lens, while it pops out from the background better with the Super Takumar.

As far as resolution, you can't really see that in low-res web pictures, so here are some 100% crops of the above pictures. This is from the Super Takumar:
Name:  GORE5835-100.jpg
Views: 2944
Size:  62.6 KB

And this is from the kit lens:
Name:  GORE5836-100.jpg
Views: 4262
Size:  45.2 KB

Of course, the kit lens is at a big disadvantage here because both shots were taken at F5.6. For the kit lens, that's wide open. For the Super Takumar, that's a few stops down. For this shot, F5.6 is the smallest I could go, otherwise the car in the background wasn't blurred the way I wanted. The difference is clear.

03-04-2010, 08:44 PM   #5
Senior Member
JesseDavis's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Yokohama
Photos: Albums
Posts: 180
I have the k-mount manual smc 50mm 1.4. When I had it out in pentax forum, the pentax guy said that the lens right before it in mfging order, the 'p' model, was the best pentax 50mm 1.4. I think he was still talking about the k mount and not the m42 thread version.
03-04-2010, 08:49 PM   #6
Veteran Member




Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Deep Forest
Posts: 630
The question is best answered yourself. Try your own tests with subjects you choose. Which lens do you think is best? That's all that matters here.

Imho, they are all fine lenses, much better than the kit lens.
03-04-2010, 09:29 PM   #7
Loyal Site Supporter
monochrome's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Kirkwood (St. Louis) MO
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 19,987
Here's a link to at least partly answer your wuestion

The Normal Lens Shootout Photo Gallery
03-04-2010, 09:46 PM   #8
Pentaxian
Just1MoreDave's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Aurora, CO
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,838
Pentax 50mm lenses are kind of like race cars. The Pentax-A 50mm f2 is going to come in last in the race. The kit lens is like your street car - general purpose. But you don't want to race even a last-place race car with it.

03-04-2010, 10:34 PM   #9
Veteran Member
RioRico's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Limbo, California
Posts: 11,264
QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
Pentax 50mm lenses are kind of like race cars. The Pentax-A 50mm f2 is going to come in last in the race. The kit lens is like your street car - general purpose. But you don't want to race even a last-place race car with it.
Of course, driving that race car in heavy urban stop-and-go traffic isn't going to do its engine any good, and you don't want to stuff it with kids & dogs & groceries, etc.

As GoremanX noted, his comparison isn't quite fair bacause the f-stops aren't really equivalent -- like driving a 50mm prime in 3rd gear (out of 7) and the kit lens in 1st gear (out of 3). Put them both mid-range, say f/11, and the kit's sharpness probably won't look bad at all. And for all the prime's sharpness, it's not so useful when the only way to get that wide shot is to back up over the edge of the cliff.
03-04-2010, 10:51 PM   #10
Pentaxian
JohnBee's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: front of computer
Posts: 4,598
QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Here's a link to at least partly answer your wuestion

The Normal Lens Shootout Photo Gallery
Wow, so much work put into that!
To bad he didn't have the SMC-A 1.4 to include in the tests too because alot of people own that one.
03-04-2010, 11:13 PM   #11
Veteran Member
Steve Beswick's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Ontario, California
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,484
The A series lens is going to meter properly on the DSLR, unlike the other two.
03-04-2010, 11:24 PM   #12
Senior Member




Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 173
I've used FA50 1.4, A50 1.7, SMC Tak 1.4, and K 50 1.4

As far as handling goes, Tak beats them all, however I just bought the K50 to replace my Tak since bayonet is so much more convenient. I've put up my Tak on eBay and I'm already missing sleep because I'm afraid I'll regret selling that lens.
03-04-2010, 11:49 PM   #13
Pentaxian
JohnBee's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: front of computer
Posts: 4,598
QuoteOriginally posted by VaSA Quote
I've used FA50 1.4, A50 1.7, SMC Tak 1.4, and K 50 1.4

As far as handling goes, Tak beats them all, however I just bought the K50 to replace my Tak since bayonet is so much more convenient. I've put up my Tak on eBay and I'm already missing sleep because I'm afraid I'll regret selling that lens.
I've never handled the 1.4, but I do have others(28, 35, 55's) and though they are all nice the all metal K's feel just as good in my hands whereas the A's and seem to have more plastic in them.

So you may not regret replacing your Tak with a K, they feel and perform really well imo. I've been replacing my M42'2 with K's and so far its been really nice especially on the 35mm end of things.
03-04-2010, 11:54 PM   #14
edl
Veteran Member




Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 457
QuoteOriginally posted by luma Quote
There is so much information on this forum to search, that I better ask this question.
Could somebody give me their opinion, which of he following three 50 mm manual focus lenses, which I happen to have in my "oldies" collection, would be best with Pentax DSLR:
SMC Pentax KA 1:2 50mm, Made in Taiwan
SMC Pentax-M 1:1:7 50 mm, Made in Japan
Super Takumar 1:1.4 50 mm, Made in Japan
How do they measure up with the standard kit lenses like the 18-55 DA in terms of resolution and contrast?
Thanks,
Of those lenses listed, I would use the M50/1.7 just because it's easier to mount and unmount.

But the M42's meter better in A mode. So if you had an adapter, the Tak is an easy choice. I'd also recommend the SMC Tak 55/1.8, that's a very affordable and highly underrated optic.
03-05-2010, 01:31 AM   #15
Site Supporter




Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: North
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3,868
Between the M50/1.7, M50/2; A50/2, A50/1.7 and FA50/1.4, I've never found any to be wanting nor the slower 50s to be inferior to the 1.4.

In other words, I'd be happy if I only had any one of them.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
50mm, focus, japan, k-mount, lenses, mm, pentax, pentax lens, slr lens, smc
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Wanted - Acquired: SMC - A 50mm 1.7 or 1.4 (Manual Focus) jgmankos Sold Items 1 05-23-2010 07:55 AM
For Sale - Sold: Pentax-K 50mm f/1.2 Manual Focus Lens MikeDubU Sold Items 17 02-10-2009 03:22 PM
Old 50mm A Manual Focus PentaxDan Pentax DSLR Discussion 1 10-03-2006 12:39 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:03 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top