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06-07-2016, 11:12 PM   #1
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Lenses with Pentax Mount that are Fast, Well-Corrected, and Sharp Wide-Open

I have another question:

What lenses in the Pentax mount are well-corrected (APO or close), fast, and sharp wide open? I am looking for close-up lenses.


Last edited by MichaelErlewine; 06-08-2016 at 12:14 AM.
06-08-2016, 12:03 AM   #2
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Wide, tele or both?

Having read an article you wrote linked off Lloyd Chambers site I think you know about the Voigtlander APO's, very nice lenses, but they are not particularly fast
06-08-2016, 12:15 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by NZ_Ross Quote
Wide, tele or both?

Having read an article you wrote linked off Lloyd Chambers site I think you know about the Voigtlander APO's, very nice lenses, but they are not particularly fast

Good question. I am looking for close-up lenses. The CV-125mm APO-Lanthar is f/2.5, which is pretty fast.
06-08-2016, 12:33 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by MichaelErlewine Quote
I have another question:

What lenses in the Pentax mount are well-corrected (APO or close), fast, and sharp wide open? I am looking for close-up lenses.
The Sigma 35mm F1.4 is good, for macro you have the D FA 50mm, D FA 100mm, and FA* 200mm (though the latter isn't very fast).

The Sigma and Pentax FA* 85mm are also quite sharp, but not good for close-ups.


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06-08-2016, 12:45 AM   #5
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D FA 50mm

D FA 50mm is so sharp you can cut yourself with it if you are not careful, so don't use it to take photos of women unless they are unusually beautiful (or have on lots of makeup).
I also like it for macro, although nowadays I like my Pentax-M 100mm f 4.0 a little better for macro. It is not AF but I do not use AF for macro shots anyway.
06-08-2016, 12:48 AM   #6
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I believe that the fastest lens is the Pentax 50mm f1.2 (eg A50mm f1.2). However, as indicated, what focal length to you need? Zeiss has some 35mm f2, 28mm f2. Voigtlander has the VL58mm f1.4, as well as the VL125mm f2.5 (not as fast as the VL58mm).

Certainly both Voigtlander and Zeiss lenses are very sharp.

My 5 cents.
06-08-2016, 12:53 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by MichaelErlewine Quote
The CV-125mm APO-Lanthar is f/2.5, which is pretty fast.
Reputedly a very good lens, but also quite rare, sought after, with prices to match

FA 50/2.8 Macro is another very sharp lens that may be worth looking at. Being a Macro lens it focuses close with a very flat field.

The Zeiss ZK 28/2 is top notch, fast enough, and reasonably close focusing - Lloyd Chambers is testing one at the moment if you follow his blog
06-08-2016, 12:57 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
The Sigma 35mm F1.4 is good, for macro you have the D FA 50mm, D FA 100mm, and FA* 200mm (though the latter isn't very fast).

The Sigma and Pentax FA* 85mm are also quite sharp, but not good for close-ups.
Thanks, I have ordered the Sigma 35mm ART lens, scratch and all.

I have the Voigtlander 90mm APO-Lanthar (old and new versions), the 40mm Ultron, and I had a Voigtlander 125mm APO-Lanthar in Pentax mount, but the "A" position on the aperture ring did not work.

As mentioned, I am looking for close-up/macro lenses that are fast wide open, well-corrected (APO), and sharp.

06-08-2016, 03:34 AM   #9
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Sigma 70/2.8 macro?
06-08-2016, 03:53 AM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by MichaelErlewine Quote
looking for close-up/macro lenses that are fast wide open
You mean have a low F-number like 1.4 or that have fast AF?
06-08-2016, 05:36 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by MichaelErlewine Quote
What lenses in the Pentax mount are well-corrected (APO or close), fast, and sharp wide open? I am looking for close-up lenses.
You should consult some sites that actually test lenses:
- Lenstip
- DxOMark
- Imaging Resource

Plus make sure you select a lens that has good lens/body profile in Lightroom or DxO Optics Pro, if you really want to get the best out of it.
06-08-2016, 06:05 AM   #12
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May I ask what you're trying to shoot? Close up and fast is an intriguing combination of attributes.
06-08-2016, 06:16 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by D1N0 Quote
You mean have a low F-number like 1.4 or that have fast AF?
No, fast wide open will means a lens that when it's wide open, it is "optically" fast.

A fast lens is one that allows a lot of light in - as in f/1.2, f/1.4, whereas slow is f/4, f/8.
06-08-2016, 06:35 AM   #14
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Apo - so aberrations are a primary concern?

In most photography it is easy to overlook a small amount and reasonably easy to correct in post.

I'm not sure many of us even worry about it. I would love some detailed shots showing the best apo corrected lenses against those that are not quite as good. At least in your workflow... It would be interesting and give context to why you need this.
06-08-2016, 08:18 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by MichaelErlewine Quote
As mentioned, I am looking for close-up/macro lenses that are fast wide open, well-corrected (APO), and sharp.
Good resource here.
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