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03-06-2013, 10:19 PM   #1
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45-85 fa

How does the 45-85 stack up against some of the primes in it's range? I've pulled the trigger on a FA 75 2.8 but want something in the 45-55 range. I've heard bad things about the fa 45 2.8 and the D FA 55 2.8 is out of my budget. Before I look at manual focus glass is the 45-85 worth investing in?

03-07-2013, 12:40 AM   #2
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It certainly is, and I can confirm that it is better than the A 55mm and many say better than the 45mms or even the DFA 55mm. Regardless of the comparisons, it is simply a very good zoom, which helped change my view of zoom lenses, it is very usable, will not disappoint, but for me it is a tad heavy.
03-07-2013, 06:00 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Smolk Quote
I can confirm that it is better than the A 55mm and many say better than the 45mms or even the DFA 55mm
Eerrr... The FA 45-80 is strangely enough (considerably) faster focusing than the DFA 55mm; especially considerint that it's both a full frame variation and (worse) is a macro with a very long focusing range - in some cases exceeding two seconds.
03-07-2013, 07:32 AM   #4
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The FA 45-85mm is a fine lens, it's one of my most heavily used options for landscapes (critical sharpness with manual focus) and general walking around (convenience with accurate autofocus). I found it definitely better than the FA 45mm prime @ 45mm. And I had a new DFA 55mm but took it back; it wasn't there in the corners compared to the 45-85mm, especially for the money involved. The 45-85mm is generally good throughout the focal range. If I was to blue-sky things a bit, I'd wish the 45-85mm was a bit lighter perhaps, and a stop faster. But other than that a good copy of the lens would be a fine addition to cover the standard focal range, in my opinion.

Don't forget to check the lens database here:
SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5 Reviews - 645 Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database

03-07-2013, 12:57 PM   #5
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45-85 is my favorite lens... or I guess it was, until I sent it to Pentax and they trashed it. But I will get another. I have never owned a 45 or 55 primt but I sold my 75mm FA after I got it.
03-07-2013, 01:13 PM   #6
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I have the 45-85 FA, and the 35 A, 55 SDM and the 75 FA.

When comparing, the 35mm is the best.
The 55mm and the 75mm are quite similar when stopped down to f/8 or f/11, very sharp to the corners, but not reaching the 35mm. The 45-85mm ist a little bit softer at these stops.
On the other hand, border sharpnes a bit more open is better on the 45-85mm, espacially when comparing to the 55mm SDM. The 55 SDM is compensating this weakness with good center performance fully open at f/2.8.

If you want a flexible lens with good quality, the 45-85mm is a good choice. If yu don't need AF, you can go fpr the old A version, too.
If you want the best picture quality that is affordable, get the 35 A, the latest version of the 67 55/4 and the adapter 67 to 645. Off course, no AF.
03-24-2013, 10:03 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by donesteban Quote
I have the 45-85 FA, and the 35 A, 55 SDM and the 75 FA.

When comparing, the 35mm is the best.
The 55mm and the 75mm are quite similar when stopped down to f/8 or f/11, very sharp to the corners, but not reaching the 35mm. The 45-85mm ist a little bit softer at these stops.
On the other hand, border sharpnes a bit more open is better on the 45-85mm, espacially when comparing to the 55mm SDM. The 55 SDM is compensating this weakness with good center performance fully open at f/2.8.

If you want a flexible lens with good quality, the 45-85mm is a good choice. If yu don't need AF, you can go fpr the old A version, too.
If you want the best picture quality that is affordable, get the 35 A, the latest version of the 67 55/4 and the adapter 67 to 645. Off course, no AF.
they say the 45-85mm is better than the 45mm,i have both and can't see the diference. the 45-85mm requires a tripod. i like the 45mm and the 75mm for hand held shooting.
03-25-2013, 02:34 PM   #8
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All I can add is: the 45-85 zoom lens is one of the best 645 lenses I have used and I think it is as good as prime lenses within the range, if not better.


Last edited by slau; 04-01-2013 at 01:19 AM.
03-29-2013, 11:34 PM   #9
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I don't use the 45-85 on the 645D. The positive thing about using a zoom would be less lenses to carry around. It doesn't replace the 35mm, so I need this anyway. My 120mm Macro is not that sharp with the 645D at very distant objects like the landscape photography I do. So the original intention 35, 45-85, 120, 200 doesn't work. And when replacing the 120mm by the 150mm, I miss something in between. So from my current setup, the 45-85 would replace the 55 SDM and the 75mm only. But those are light lenses, the 75mm is very small. In total, they are not taking less space than the 45-85mm would. So I use 35/55/75/105/150/200 on the 645D.
I use the 45-85mm when taking photos with the 645N. There, the 120mm Macro is behaving a little bit better, and I normally don't need a lens with less than 45mm. 45-85/120 and maybe a 200mm if needed is a perfect and quite small set.
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