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01-11-2011, 09:02 AM   #16
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Couple days ago I received the 645 FA 120 Makro and FA 45-85 mm zoom.
I did some testing and I really like the 120 makro, nice sharpness all over, auto focus works perfectly as well.
The FA 45-85 mm is a different case, the right bottom side is not sharp at all, while the other sides looks very good - at 45 and 55 mm setting. At longer settings, 75-85 mm,
sharpness goes down.
The FA 75mm looks good, but so far the FA 120 mm is the best lens I have tested, but as I can see, the others on this forum having the same experience.
I purchased the 645D specially for landscapes, so the saga will go on, to find one good wider angle lens. I love the Pentax, but my Leica M9 pictures with the wide angles are just beautiful and I hoped, the Pentax will beat the Leica, but so far is not my case.
Hopefully, is only my experience and the other Pentax 645D users are happier.
May be some one has a nice wide angle , tested on 645D for sale....ha, ha, ha,

01-11-2011, 10:08 AM   #17
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Location: Park City, Utah
Posts: 208
Oh boy,
Your results have been identical to mine, Though I am waiting my for my 45-85mm FA zoom, now I am loosing hope, at least on the WA side of things, Like yourself I am in the exact same boat, I have an M9 also, with there entry level wa lenses and the WA on it smokes the 645D.. I Don't get it, I don't even want super wide, I would be happy with a 35mm uquiv, FOV on the 645D which the 45mm lens should have, but sharp, not just in the center.

I will keep you posted on when I get my 45-85mm FA, I maybe the lucky one who gets a good copy.
Though i am not holding my breath. My 45mm FA fixed, great in the center but lousy in the corners.

I have to admit, I probably drank the Pentax coolaid like a lot of other people did when the 645D came out, I wanted to believe that after I drop the 10K on the body which btw is a gem IMHO,
I though I could go out and buy soma used glass and be all set, like you said besides the 120, and the 75, oh yeah my 200mm FA seems to be OK to, but everything below 75mm does not work and it's not like I can return theses used lenses, not like buying a new lens at B&H try it out and if there is a problem send it back for another copy.
With Pentax at this point we are stuck.

01-11-2011, 10:43 AM   #18
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Has anybody compared the new DFA 55mm to the old 645-A 55mm?
01-11-2011, 10:48 AM   #19
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Hi Steven
I discussed Today this lens issue with our local distributor. He believes that brand new Pentax Fa 45-85 should be optically OK. So he will order one and one Fa 35 mm as well, we are going to test it together. For the test definitely I will take my Leica as well. I was ready to invest to longer lenses, but I will wait, no more investment until I do not find the right wide angle.
I sold most of my Nikon gear to finance the Pentax in a hope to step up in Quality, but thanks God I kept my best Nikon lenses, just in case and I can borrow my good friend D3x.

So, landscape shooters, be honest, are You really that satisfied....and we knew that might happen
Sorry for my English


01-11-2011, 12:06 PM   #20
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Location: Park City, Utah
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"Brand New" FA 45-85, I was told they stopped production on all FA lens over 1.5 years ago from Pentax USA, and my dealer here in the states had a "new" FA 35 and I thought the results were bad.
I just got off the phone with Pentax USA 645D tech guy and he said, basically with the FA lens out there it's pretty much a crap shoot. His odds on getting a good copy of a WA lens was about 20%, not very good odds at all.

This landscape shooter coming originally from a D3x, then to a H3D, then to a M9 and now also have a 645D my answer so far is "not really to happy"

01-12-2011, 08:18 AM   #21
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Location: Chicago
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Original Poster
As I mentioned at the top of this thread, my 45-85 had symmetry issues. That was a "new" lens, and therefore presumably under warranty, so I sent it in to Pentax to see if they can fix it. I expect they'll have it a while. In the meantime, I picked up a second one. This one is used, even has a little ding or two, but looks to be a better copy optically, good enough that I've decided to keep it. When the other one comes back, I'll test both, keep the best one and sell the other.

I've also decided to keep the D-FA 55mm, despite its sharpness problem away from center. Because that particular problem seems to plague everyone who's tested one of these, I consider it to be, effectively, a design problem. No point looking for a better copy.

And landscape is not really my thing. I think this lens can work well for a lot of what I might use it for, where edge matter are out-of focus anyway. And having the focal length also available in a zoom that's sharper in the corners, I feel I'm covered.

So I have a nice little set of lenses that, for now, I'm happy with, as a group: FA 75mm/2.8, FA 120mm/4, D-FA 55mm/2.8, FA 45-85mm/4.5, FA 80-160mm/4.5

Tim Wilson

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