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comparing primes wide open
Posted By: rparmar, 05-25-2009, 03:05 PM

Some posts in other threads made me decide to check out several of my lenses wide open. Even though I generally stop down at least one to tighten up the sharpness, I thought it might be good to reacquaint myself with how well the lenses do when sucking in as much light as possible.

I used my default processing with some sharpening, curves and levels. I don't see any point comparing RAW images right out of the camera, as that is not realistic in any way.

I shot with the 50/1.2, 43/1.9 and 77/1.8, three staples of my collection.

I started by going out to the garden, but there was enough wind that I gave up for the FA77 and moved back inside. So it's not all coming up daisies!


daisy at 50mm
By area this image is about 1/9 of the original frame. It has of course been sized down further from that for posting here.

smc Pentax 50mm F1.2
f/1.2
1/750s
ISO 100
manual mode
centre weighted metering
manual focus




daisy at 43mm
This image is also about 1/9 of the original frame.

smc Pentax FA 43mm F1.9 Limited
f/1.9
1/350s
ISO 100
aperture priority
multi-segment metering
auto-focus




lenses at 77mm
By area this is about 70% of the original frame. This is part of my Vivitar Bestiary.

smc Pentax FA 77mm F1.8 Limited
f/1.8
1/125s
ISO 200
-1 EV
aperture priority
multi-segment metering
auto-focus




collection at 77mm
By area this is about 80% of the original frame. Focus is on the business end of the key.

smc Pentax FA 77mm F1.8 Limited
f/1.8
1/125s
ISO 100
+1 EV
aperture priority
multi-segment metering
auto-focus


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05-25-2009, 03:09 PM   #2
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I think the FA lenses acquit themselves very well, But then again, I have always known that. The 50/1.2 is best used wide open as an effect. In fact, that's why I don't consider it redundant in this line-up... it has a different look that can be very useful. It also has a noticeable blue tint, even after my post-processing. Stopped down it is as sharp as the FA Limiteds.
05-25-2009, 05:20 PM   #3
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yes the K50mm f/1.2 is a spectacular lens, especially when it is stopped down. I find the bokeh settles down at f/2.8 and it can produce a smooth blur reminiscent of the FA31 limited. At f/4~ f/8 it matches the resolving power of my FA77Limited comfortably.


though I will warn you it does suffer from transverse chromatic aberration at closer focusing distances (blue fringing) I prefer to use the FA77 limited for close up work anyway because it has FREE and it's a bit longer, and gives you space between you and your subject.

one handy thing is when you're using a AF540FGZ flash set it to "a" mode and set the aperture to f/2 ISO 100 set your camera to Iso 100 and the lens to f/1.2 and you can get away with firing the flash in bounced mode at 3FPS. and my 540 hasn't skipped a single frame when I have done this.

one of my images with the K50mm f/1.2 wide open.

05-25-2009, 07:39 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
yes the K50mm f/1.2 is a spectacular lens, especially when it is stopped down. I find the bokeh settles down at f/2.8 and it can produce a smooth blur reminiscent of the FA31 limited. At f/4~ f/8 it matches the resolving power of my FA77Limited comfortably.
I hardly use my F50mmF1.7 wide open at all as I find the DoF even at F2 is just too little

I agree that my 200mmF2.8 has the best of both world in sharpness and bokeh. It is just dreamy





I generally do not believe in shooting lens wide open unless for sp effect. It still has creamy bokeh even at F4/F5.6



Daniel

05-26-2009, 04:08 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
one of my images with the K50mm f/1.2 wide open.
Yes, the lens does especially well when the CA is removed in a monochrome process. There is a nice smooth look to the images. This is fitting content -- well done!
05-26-2009, 07:06 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by rparmar Quote
Yes, the lens does especially well when the CA is removed in a monochrome process. There is a nice smooth look to the images. This is fitting content -- well done!
actually there was very little CA in that image, I changed it to a toned black and white so I could get away with boosting the midtone without the image looking artificial.


here is the original... Pentax K 50mm f/1.2 ISO100 1/125s @ f/1.2

Last edited by Digitalis; 08-31-2010 at 05:22 PM.
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