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04-17-2010, 06:20 AM   #1
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Full frame Lens vs DA lens(APS)

I see a big disadvantage in buying DA lens who are made to work with APS-C if in the future if I decided to buy a full frame . Price will come down like all electronics and there I will be stuck with lens that I will loose image on the edges

I am right thinking that way by paying more for the long run ?

04-17-2010, 06:54 AM   #2
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The FA lenses with the exception of the FA50 are all high quality glass and designs. So you are paying a premium on that, not on the size of the circle it creates. If you decide to shoot film in the future then buying the FA lenses will make sense. If you are never going to shoot flim then you will have great glass on APS-C DSLR bodies. Do not predicate your lens decision on the assumption that Pentax will make a Full Frame DSLR. Pentax has stated for the last 5 years or so that they are commited to the APS-C path.
04-17-2010, 06:55 AM   #3
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the truth is that we don't know if pentax will go full frame. pentax doesn't have the kind of money or the numbers of staff to start mass production of the FA series lenses*. so if they did come out with a full frame camera this year or next year they would be shooting themselves in the foot IMO

*it would be nice if they did,though.

Interms of image quality you don't really gain much, the corners of the image field are sharper than they would be with a lens having a smaller imaging circle - but that is simply common sense. as to whether it's worth the extra $500 or so price differential between DA and FA glass - it's up to you, Only an experienced photographer would actually notice a difference.

"Pentax has stated for the last 5 years or so that they are commited to the APS-C path"

- I recall nikon said the same thing too once....
04-17-2010, 07:49 AM   #4
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Thank you for your answers, that a pretty point of view. I will still keep my FA28-200 in case Pentax change course

04-17-2010, 09:20 AM   #5
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I dunno, but building the 645D sounds more expensive to me rather than building an FF lens. if ever Pentax doesn't make one, there's no choice than to buy another FF brand with the help of an adapter and go fully manual focus.
04-17-2010, 09:29 AM   #6
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I have a mix of ASP-C and full frame lenses.

Basically, this happened by accident because of the fact that I shot film for years before shooting digital, and for 2 years shot a mix of both.

The only 2 ASP-C sensor based lenses I have are the sigma 10-20 and a samyang 8mm fisheye.

The sigma vignettes on full frame until aboout 12-13mm, I have not tried the fisheye.

the reason I have these 2 lenses is that they extend wider than the lenses I had for film, on full frame.

My widest full frame lens is an 18-35 zoom. the 10-20 fills in below that range for digital.

but the advantage I now have is that if the totally unthinkable happens, I could easily go to full frame. BUT, personally, I like the crop factor that the sensor has, and use it to my advantage for shooting wild life. I accept the resolution and quality of my 10-20 and see no need for a wider FOV therefore for me, I see no reason to go full frame in digital unless it is all pentax is willing to offer at some point
04-17-2010, 09:42 AM   #7
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About half my lenses are "full frame" lenses. My regret about the DA lenses is not that they may not work on some mythical FF digital camera, but that they don't work on my old film bodies, which I still enjoy.
04-17-2010, 10:49 AM   #8
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I just checked my lens database/spreadsheet. I see that the current count of lenses I can use on my K20D, not including those I hope to sell, is around 60. (Don't ask.) Of those, about 20 are PK-mount. Of those, exactly THREE are DA's. I think this indicates my priorities, eh?

On reason: I also shoot a ZX-M and various M42 film cameras. All those non-DA lenses work on both PK bodies, and the 40-odd M39's and M42's are sufficient for the screwmount classics. Will Pentax ever make a FF dSLR? Maybe so, maybe no. I don't care. Even cheap FF lenses present their sweet spots on APS-C bodies, so even if I never shoot another 135 frame, I'm still ahead. And if the K-FF-D ever does appear, I'm ready.

DA lenses have their place, for sure. I'm quite happy that my initial kit consisted of the DA10-17, DA18-55, and FA50/1.4. I'm quite happy that I later got a DA18-55 cheap, to use as a mount for all sorts of interesting filters and gear. The only DA lens that temps me at all now is the 18-55WR, so I can go crawling in mud & muck. I'm quite quite happy that all my other lenses can be used on other platforms. I don't like limitations and constraints. FF lenses allow for expansion.


Last edited by RioRico; 04-17-2010 at 05:42 PM. Reason: clerical error
04-17-2010, 12:03 PM   #9
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Frannkly I think that now with 645 out we will not see FF for "a while".
Still, looking at my line up, only Sigma 10-20 is APSC based lens.

My main reasons for buying older glass are (and in order of appearance):

1- MF. This is nobrainer IMO. Some DA lenses are decent for MF (DA* for example) but even they can't rival old glass in MF. And with the size of Safox's cross sensors, not the best/fastest AF on K10 and varying AF precision under different light the MF just makes perfect sense when using faster glass

2- speed. There is only one f1.4 lens in DA line up! And to get it new, I'd have to sell 2-3 of my current lenses.
besides only substitute for speed is MORE speed. And my K10 comes to play again as it's higher ISO performance is well documented.

3- budget. Older and therefore FF is usually cheaper.
f.e.: DA*55 is around 600GBP these days. K50/1.2 and K55/1.8 together cost me just above 300.
and in case IF FF happens, I don't have to change my lenses, just get usedd to new FOW which won't be problem as my 31 becomes my 24, 43 becomes 31 and 55 becomes 43. I just need 77/85 which will later on FF be usedd the way I use 50/55 now.....

4- gaps in line. Hence my K24/2.8. There simply isn't anything like that inn DA line...

5- sweet spot behaviour. Despite many DA lenses having great IQ the FF lenses use only their central portions on APSC sensor and are effectively filtering out the "weaker corners"

my 2p

Peter
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