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11-11-2013, 03:41 PM   #1
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Buy 25mm DA now or wait for new wide zoom?

Hi all,

So I really need a lens wider than the 28mm eq. of the 35A that I currently have.

I would love to buy the 25mm DA but only really need a 21mm-24mm eq focal length.

I see that there is a new wide zoom approx 24-35mm eq due to be released some time in the next 12 months, which would be perfect.

Also, I use grad filters and big stopper filters a lot, so the 25mm could be a problem there.

Could anybody chime in with some advice or experience with the 25 or their thoughts on what is coming?

Thanks, Scott

11-11-2013, 03:46 PM   #2
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Don't you mean the 21mm DA? There isn't a 25mm in the Pentax line up- infact many users would go crazy if there was a 24mm released!
11-11-2013, 04:29 PM   #3
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OP - no thoughts for you as the 35A is my widest lens as well. I'd love one of the 25 primes or a wide zoom, but it's going to take some time to generate the cash.

QuoteOriginally posted by Tonto Quote
Don't you mean the 21mm DA? There isn't a 25mm in the Pentax line up- infact many users would go crazy if there was a 24mm released!
645 system lenses.

Pentax 645 Wide-Angle Primes - Lens Reviews and Specifications - SLR and Interchangeable Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database
11-11-2013, 05:08 PM   #4
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If you need the lens soon, I'd buy it now; the road map is under revision since Ricoh has had second thoughts about 645D development (still committed to the system, it's probably a sensor issue, but I would not expect a new zoom any time soon before a new body). You might also buy a film body and use that 35mm as it was intended, with scanning, for the interim

11-11-2013, 06:51 PM   #5
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First I'd encourage you to consider buying the 25mm DA. It's very expensive, but for me it has been worth it. It's a terrific lens. I'd guess it might trump the zoom, but that's pure speculation. The zoom would be practical, but likely in the same price range.

Second, I'd expect to hear rumors about the future of the 645D system at CP+. The wide angle zoom was slated for 2013 or later, and I'd be fairly confident Pentax will deliver in 2014. The 645D system is a good match for Ricoh as a company. Too bad it's taking them so long. There was this Russian Pentax interview, and based on that, Ricoh might have succeeded in finding a sensor manufacturer that meets their demands.
11-11-2013, 06:59 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lacunapratum Quote
First I'd encourage you to consider buying the 25mm DA. It's very expensive, but for me it has been worth it. It's a terrific lens. I'd guess it might trump the zoom, but that's pure speculation. The zoom would be practical, but likely in the same price range.

Second, I'd expect to hear rumors about the future of the 645D system at CP+. The wide angle zoom was slated for 2013 or later, and I'd be fairly confident Pentax will deliver in 2014. The 645D system is a good match for Ricoh as a company. Too bad it's taking them so long. There was this Russian Pentax interview, and based on that, Ricoh might have succeeded in finding a sensor manufacturer that meets their demands.

This one?


DK: What do you think about cameras like Nikon D800, with a 36Mp full frame sensor, and you have a bigger camera 645D with a 40Mp sensor. Do you consider Nikon as a competitor, or is it much lower compared to 645D?

SW: As we said, we are thinking about the evolution of the technologies, so someday in the near future... The APS-C sensor has improved a lot, as full frame sensors has also evolved a lot. That's why the full frame sensors are coming in the image quality closer to medium cameras. We launched the 645D two or three years ago. If we use new technologies for the sensor, we would make the image quality much better than Nikon.

DK: You mean you have plans to replace this model?

SW: Yes, we are thinking of a successor of the 645D.
11-11-2013, 08:04 PM - 1 Like   #7
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I have the DA 25mm myself and it's a great lens. Very expensive but I wouldn't give it up for landscape and architecture work. Your first sentence said, "So I really need a lens wider than the 28mm eq. of the 35A that I currently have." If that's true, there is only one lens option right now -- the DA 25mm. You have a processing option via stitching, but you may or may not want to put up with that. If no to stitching, then the only two questions are can you afford the 25mm, and how long are you prepared to wait for the zoom?

For myself, I never make plans based on vaporware unless some kind of credible info indicates that a new product is truly imminent (i.e. within a handful of weeks). None of us are getting any younger, and I generally like to spend my time making work, not playing what-if with the vendors. The 645D lens roadmap is very non-specific, and Pentax / Ricoh have been somewhat late to market with the few lenses that have come from it. There's no real reason to believe the additional lenses on the roadmap have been shelved, but also no reason to believe they're coming at any particular time. If it was me, I'd get the tools available now that let me do my work now, and worry about whatever new stuff happens later, whenever it finally comes...

Last edited by Royce Howland; 11-11-2013 at 08:45 PM.
11-11-2013, 11:02 PM   #8
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I think Royce has some good advice.

Pentax tends to specialize in primes, so why not get the prime that's really good now, rather than the zoom that might be barely good enough later?

After all, I think your situation (with the crop factor) is exactly why they made the DA25 in the first place.


Last edited by DSims; 11-11-2013 at 11:08 PM.
11-12-2013, 02:30 AM   #9
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Thanks everybody, you have raised some valid points.

Well if I were to purchase the 25DA, it would be after xmas. The CP+ show is in February and I can wait till then. If nothing by then I think I will get the 25mm DA. I am happy for the moment using the 35 and still making great images

My main concern is using my lee filters on the 25mm, due to not having a filter thread. I may have to get a slip-on holder machined to fit over the lens from the rear so that when I screw on an adapter ring it holds in place.

Is the CA as bad on the DA as people have stated on the D FA version?

Scott
11-12-2013, 04:58 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by 2351HD Quote
Is the CA as bad on the DA as people have stated on the D FA version?
From my experience they are basically the same - in terms of distortion and CA. I kept my original D-FA version , which will be handy should pentax ever decide to upgrade to a larger sensor size in the 645D. But at any rate, if you know how to correct for CA and distortion it is one of the best MF wide angle lenses going - it is optically superior to the Mamiya 28mm f/4.5 LS-D lens.
11-12-2013, 07:33 AM - 1 Like   #11
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I purchased the 25mm D FA in may of 2012 from a member here on the forum. (the older full frame version released in non-usa). It's a great lens, VERY sharp from about f/11-f/16 and I haven't found the CA's all that bothersome like some report. I had to make my own front filter for GND's using a rubber PVC joint that I cut down with a box knife, some Velcro, and a cokin Z filter holder that I turned around backwards. It holds 1 4x6 filter with no vignetting, though I'm weary to use it in high winds near a cliff (nearly lost the whole deal shooting in Bryce Canyon last fall!)







It's not winning any design awards, but it gets the job done!
11-12-2013, 07:38 AM   #12
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I used double sided tape and some window stripping to build up the rubber part to the outside dimensions of the Cokin Z filter holder. Then I used sticky backed hook Velcro to create a surface that could be attached using loop Velcro ...pretty much all stuff I had laying around!
11-12-2013, 07:41 AM   #13
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Also, I chose rubber/weather stripping over plastic because it's unbreakable and things can sometimes take a beating...I also chose not to use glue because in my experience anything that glues plastic eventually comes apart...the Velcro also allows me to take it apart into smaller pieces should I need to for packing my bag to fly on an airline.
11-12-2013, 09:52 PM   #14
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I remember hark Lee showed a nice DIY filter holder in his 645D review.

Regarding the 25mm lens, I have the DFA version which is really great. I do not have any more or less trouble with CAs than I do with any other UWA or fisheye on K mount, it is a given there will be some. Regardless, the CA is completely and easily correctable in camera raw.
Also the internal filter holder is a real win on this lens.
Good luck making that big decision!!
11-13-2013, 06:00 PM   #15
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Another option, albeit a seemingly cheesy one, is the use of a wide angle converter. Schneider Optics Century Wide Angle Converter Lenses attached to front of the lens converting the lens to an ultra wide angle.
Costing around $600 USD, they're far from cheap, but a bargain compared to the 25mm price tag of $4,999.
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