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06-26-2017, 12:18 AM   #76
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Perhaps all that was required to make the D FA 50mm macro "digital" was updating the coatings. The optics are very good, the only "weakness" I can think of is the front focus design (but then, do we want IF in a macro lens?). The barrel needs a refresh.

Benefit of doubt should be offered by default; just saying.

06-26-2017, 05:08 AM - 2 Likes   #77
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I take issue with DPReview using "limited lens selection" as a cons for Pentax, despite the fact that one can choose from around 60 FF lenses for the K-1 that are readily available. Sony's E-mount FE lenses are probably equally limited (if not more so). Sony's longest E-mount lens is a zoom that tops out at 400mm and they don't have a fisheye with AF.

Of course one can use adapters on an A7/A9 series camera, but adapters come with their own host of problems. DPReview just recently posted their umpteenth article on the Sony A9, this time however not singing its praise but reporting on someone else's finding that the use of very long Canon glass is severely hampered by the adapter. In this case, the frame rate drops dramatically, questioning the A9's suitability as the ultimate sports camera.

Adapters can also severely reduce functionality (e.g., prohibit certain AF modes), can cause focusing issues (Michael Zelbel once had to abort a demonstration of his new Sony with a metabones adapter, as the lens just couldn't focus; he subsequently got rid off his Canon glass), introduce tilting of the optical plane, and make handling (lens changes) awkward. All this does not appear to be a topic at DPReview.

I also take issue with Pentax lenses being called "expensive" when the same courtesy is not extended to Sony's lenses. They are not exactly cheap, are they?

I furthermore feel it is wrong to call Pentax lenses "heavy" because first, they are not all heavy, and second, fast top-quality glass is not light. The good Sony lenses are "heavy" as well, are they not?

Yes, there is an argument to make about most Pentax FF glass not offering silent focusing, but silent AF is not the be all and end all of photography. One could equally dismiss the A7 series for anything but street photography with small pancakes because any bigger lens exposes their grip as the joke that it is. I'm not saying that, but if it is justifiable to say that Pentax glass is limited, heavy, and expensive, then it is justifiable to state that Sony mirrorless cameras are limited to be used with small lenses.
06-26-2017, 05:27 AM - 1 Like   #78
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QuoteQuote:
I'm not sure if a significant percentage of people would consider these lenses, "modern" or not.
The only people who care about this are those who think only modern lenses are good. This is simply a marketing ploy by people who want to sell you glass. The first part of advertising, convince you what you have isn't good enough. This is done by introducing terms like "modern." a loosely defined term seeming to mean "designed in the last 5 years" but with no standard based on optical quality or utility. It's used to avoid the terms like "excellent" or "good" and is particularly usefull for companies without legacy glass, like Sony.

Stores want you to be interested only in modern glass.
Someone truly interested in photography wants you to be interested in the best glass for what you do. Whether it's modern or not is irrelevant.
The simple fact is it's in the interest of DPR to keep you buying "modern" pretty much defined as latest and greatest. because what they are doing is selling cameras. 'Modern" is good, because they don't make any money selling legacy glass to pay for their website and staff.

They won't get into terms like "excellent optical qualities" because that's a term that can't be bandied about by sales staff. Modern, can apply to any trash some misguided person carelessly manufactures. Modern trash is a phrase that also sues the word modern. Without an identifier modern i itself implies nothing but new.

Those of who learned from text books and flesh and blood teachers have a very different take on this than the above, because we didn't learn photography from people who were selling us stuff at the same time they taught. They had no commercial interest in us. We paid on the way in the door.

So, I'm not sure people who would even use the term modern glass, are even worth listening to. Modern doesn't mean "best quality", it means most recently made, and really, why is that even an issue? The implication is that "modern" can't be bad. What load of crap. Would I use a DA 50-200 instead of my DA*200 because it's a more modern design? Stated that way, I would hope folks will see how ludicrous this attitude is. And you can't champion the use of terms like "modern lens" without implying that the various 18-50s, 55-300s etc. are better than the the old 50 macros, 200 macros, 200s, 300s also on. They simply aren't. A quality lens is a quality lens.

Turn your head away from the sales desk and start talking photography.

For this of you intent on the modern glass thing.. I'll trade you a DA 70 for you FA 77 and DA 35 2.4 for your 31 ltd. Lets see how many people really believe in "modern glass."

I'm guessing I'm not going to get a single offer on my modern DA 35 2.4, modern though it may be.

There is really little in this world more offensive than writing off glass available on other systems as not modern. No one care. People care about whether or not there is quality glass available for their system at affordable prices. The optimal word being quality, not modern.

Last edited by normhead; 06-26-2017 at 05:57 AM.
06-26-2017, 05:35 AM   #79
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Using double standards is not something new. Particularly, people are very forgiving when it comes to MILCs. With Pentax? It's usually "this is Pentax, I don't like them, I'll think hard of the reasons why". IMHO.

So, with Sony, their lenses are fast and excellent - even the ones that aren't. According to Photozone, though, even G lenses can be "a little" disappointing - while a tested GM lens gets 3 stars for its optics.

Michael Zelbel's story is an interesting one, and a win for Sony. A customer who maybe was convinced to switch by the promise of being able to use his lenses; and when he couldn't, guess what, Sony sold him a bunch a new lenses.

---------- Post added 26-06-17 at 04:01 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
The only people who care about this are those who think only modern lenses are good. This is simply a marketing ploy by people who want to sell you glass. The first part of advertising, convince you what you have isn't good enough. This is done by introducing terms like "modern." a loosely defined term seeming to mean "designed in the last 5 years" but with no standard based on optical quality or utility. It's used to avoid the terms like "excellent" or "good" and is particularly usefull for companies without legacy glass, like Sony.
Since I am occasionally using this term - and request more such lenses from Ricoh Imaging.
The definition "designed in the last 5 years" is no good. Instead, how about "lenses with optics designed for high-resolution imaging sensors (as opposed to film), with high measurable qualities while (preferably) also having a pleasing rendering, and with silent, reasonably fast in-lens AF motors"?
This is more about the end result than an arbitrary time limit. I want lenses to match my K-1 and its replacement; it's as simple as that.

The 50-200 is out; pedestrian optics, screw drive and it also predates the DA* 200mm by 3 years. The DA* 200mm is almost there, except for the somewhat high PF and the slow SDM motor. We can consider the DA* a modern lens, albeit one needing an update. The DA* 300mm's only weak point, IMO, is the slow SDM motor.
And of course, you shouldn't be comparing lenses in different classes. The 55-300 RE PLM doesn't have to beat the DA* 300mm's sharpness and rendering.

Of course, I've seen the term being used in the wrong way - just like you say, manufacturer with "modern lenses" even though some of them are nothing special, optics-wise. Watch out for sheep in wolves' skins.


Last edited by Kunzite; 06-26-2017 at 06:03 AM.
06-26-2017, 06:13 AM   #80
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I understand the
QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Instead, how about "lenses with optics designed for high-resolution imaging sensors (as opposed to film), with high measurable qualities while (preferably) also having a pleasing rendering, and with silent, reasonably fast in-lens AF motors"?
I don't really care what a lens was designed for. Many film lenses have made the transition to digital quite well. screw drive or electric doesn't bother me either. I shoot with both.

My current WA lens for the K-1 is an FA-J 18-35, rated 7.72 out of 10. Probably one of the worst rated lenses I own. Yet it performs admirably on a K-1. It performed poorly on my K-3 so obviously, that little bit of size difference in those higher res. K-3 pixels pushed it over it's resolution limit, but that being said. I'm not currently thinking of adding another lens to cover that range. It's good enough for what i do. Film are, yes, modern? no. Good enough for the K-1, yes. Screw drive, I don't care. Digitally optimized, no. When I need UWA it goes with me and it' does what I need.

My problem with lenses like you are describing is simply cost. I didn't buy into Nikon when the D800 came out because I couldn't afford the trinity. I bought into the K-1 when it came out because I didn't have to. I already had almost everything I needed.
06-26-2017, 06:37 AM - 1 Like   #81
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I agree with Class A. The things listed as negatives for Pentax really do apply to a great extent to Sony. Size and weight are relatively small with lenses like the 31, 50 macro, 55, and other primes.

The biggest negatives with older lenses is PF and screw drive noise, if that bothers you. Modern lenses will have less PF and may be sharper in the corners wide open. I say may be, because not all Sony modern primes are great with regard to edge sharpness and vignetting.

All that said, number scores given in different years are not equatable and it is reasonable for DP Review to call this a tie.
06-26-2017, 06:44 AM   #82
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Perhaps all that was required to make the D FA 50mm macro "digital" was updating the coatings. The optics are very good, the only "weakness" I can think of is the front focus design (but then, do we want IF in a macro lens?). The barrel needs a refresh.
I'm not sure about the 50mm macros, but the internal focus designs on 100mm macros of Canon/Nikon are outright enormous compared to the DFA100mm, so no, I don't think we always want IF.

Perhaps it is time for a no-holds barred ultra modern macro with all the bells and whistles, but I wouldn't want to see the tiny macro options of Pentax vanish entirely. We're overdue for a 200mm macro refresh though, so this could fill the hole. Just paint a "D" onto the barrel of the FA*200mm macro and that would probably be a good enough refresh for me...oops, I'm going back to older optical designs again.
06-26-2017, 07:19 AM   #83
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QuoteOriginally posted by BrianR Quote
I'm not sure about the 50mm macros, but the internal focus designs on 100mm macros of Canon/Nikon are outright enormous compared to the DFA100mm, so no, I don't think we always want IF.

Perhaps it is time for a no-holds barred ultra modern macro with all the bells and whistles, but I wouldn't want to see the tiny macro options of Pentax vanish entirely. We're overdue for a 200mm macro refresh though, so this could fill the hole. Just paint a "D" onto the barrel of the FA*200mm macro and that would probably be a good enough refresh for me...oops, I'm going back to older optical designs again.
And that's exactly the issue. I didn't buy into Nikon when the D800 came out because of cost. I wasn't looking for a Pentax version of those lenses. And I won't be4 buying the Pentax versions.SO far, I'm avoiding added cost almost entirely. If I sold my K-1 today, everything but my FA-J 18-35 would be kept for use on the K-3, and are continually being used on the K-3 and K-5. The three lenses I bought when I bought the K-1, the DFA 28-105, the Tarmon 300 2.8 and the 50 macro, all performance, amazingly well on the K-3 and K-5. I don't need a K-1 to justify them.

06-26-2017, 07:37 AM   #84
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Norm, I'm not saying that you (or anyone else) should necessarily go for "modern lenses". What I'm doing is trying to get a sensible definition of said "modern lenses" - after that, it's everyone's choice.
I'm more concerned with size&weight, by the way. The acquisition price... I'd pay that once; the size&weight price, every time I'd be using that lens.

BrianR: yes, that's what I'm talking about - and IF design have shorter FLs the closer they're focusing.
I have nothing against excellent optics in a modern (WR/AW, DC/PLM) barrel. It's the end result that matters. OTOH, with the "modern lens" used the way normhead was describing, the end result didn't mattered that much.
06-26-2017, 07:39 AM   #85
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QuoteOriginally posted by SGOMMO7 Quote
Originally posted by rod_grant
"both" means all five lenses have the same two qualities - each one is both heavy and expensive.
Ha, Ha, So that's what he meant!

Though in my defense the word, 'both' can be used as either an pronoun or a conjunction. If it's being used as a conjunction in this sentence –

“If you're starting from scratch, be aware that there are just a few modern Pentax full-frame lenses, and they're both heavy and expensive.”

Then its appearance is superfluous as the word, 'both' can simply be eliminated from the sentence without changing the meaning –

“If you're starting from scratch, be aware that there are just a few modern Pentax full-frame lenses, and they're heavy and expensive.”

So its inclusion should indicate that it's being used as a pronoun relating to the, "few modern Pentax full-frame lenses" that is just priorly mentioned.
"Both" is unambiguously being used as an conjunction for emphasis in the review. When they use the term "a few", that indicates that the number of lenses is more than two, so "both" doesn't apply to the lenses as a pronoun. If they said "few" instead of "a few", that could possibly be referring to two, kind of in a sarcastic way.
06-26-2017, 02:30 PM   #86
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Norm, I'm not saying that you (or anyone else) should necessarily go for "modern lenses". What I'm doing is trying to get a sensible definition of said "modern lenses" - after that, it's everyone's choice.
I'm more concerned with size&weight, by the way. The acquisition price... I'd pay that once; the size&weight price, every time I'd be using that lens.
I'm not saying it's not a good thing. Obviously a lot of people count on those lenses. I just wish they'd put put a series of ƒ4-5.6 lenses for the masses.
06-26-2017, 02:37 PM   #87
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Maybe the tele zoom on the roadmap is precisely that - a nice pair for the 28-105. All that would be left is a wide angle zoom.
And moderate aperture primes.
06-26-2017, 02:59 PM   #88
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
Maybe the tele zoom on the roadmap is precisely that - a nice pair for the 28-105. All that would be left is a wide angle zoom.
And moderate aperture primes.
Rght now I have my 60-250 paired with the 28-105. I'm not planning on changing that anytime soon. Of the four walk around lenses, standard kit, 18-35, 28-105, 60-250, and 50 macro, (with the 40 XS tucked away in a pocket somewhere} only the 18-35 is up for replacement when possible. The others with varying degrees of modernity are all completely acceptable.

Last edited by normhead; 06-26-2017 at 03:07 PM.
06-26-2017, 03:22 PM   #89
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kunzite Quote
BrianR: yes, that's what I'm talking about - and IF design have shorter FLs the closer they're focusing.
Same for the DFA100mm, it's closer to 75mm at the minimum focusing distance. Lens elements move relative to one another as the focusing distance changes (specifically, the rear element doesn't move with it's fixed rear-element extension or "FREE" system). This would have been a 'modern' design 'improvement' back in the late 80's. I think it was on Pentax's first 100mm macro that hit 1:1 magnification, and the design is also supposed to improve performance at all distances. It had the advantage of not making the lens monstrous in size, so from my perspective, it's a definite improvement.

But yes, I get what you're saying. Not all design changes/improvements are going to be desirable to all users. It's inevitable with lenses where it's a push and pull of various compromises and everyone favours different traits.

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I'm not saying it's not a good thing. Obviously a lot of people count on those lenses. I just wish they'd put put a series of ƒ4-5.6 lenses for the masses.
The 55-300mm PLM is relatively new, so I think there's hope they haven't abandoned the lightweight philosophy. With the K-1 being a relatively low cost FullFrame, I think a package of quality slower zooms designed for it makes sense. Hopefully Pentax thinks the same way and everyone can eventually be reasonably happy.
06-26-2017, 09:00 PM   #90
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QuoteOriginally posted by leekil Quote
"Both" is unambiguously being used as an conjunction for emphasis in the review. When they use the term "a few", that indicates that the number of lenses is more than two, so "both" doesn't apply to the lenses as a pronoun. If they said "few" instead of "a few", that could possibly be referring to two, kind of in a sarcastic way.
I've always understood, "a few" as meaning 2 or more but usually less than 7.

Checked on Google, first thing that came up –

While many people would agree that "a few" means three or more, the actual dictionary definition of
"a few" is, "not many but more than one." So, "a few" cannot be one, but it can be as low as two.

Quantity Terminology on the LSAT | PowerScore
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