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06-15-2014, 02:46 AM   #1
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I'm going to make the 645 jump, now a lens question...

I'm going to get a shiny new 645Z as soon as I can (I live in NZ so will be pretty hard, going to UK later this year so might be cheaper and easier to buy over there).

Anyway, I'm looking at glass and I had a quick search and looked at the lens reviews but I'm having trouble with the A and FA thing, I shoot portraits and staged product/art stuff. Should I be chasing A or FA lenses? There are some good deals around for both and the 75mm and 120mm are going to be the first ones I get.

Just wanted to ask the people here about what the big differences would be and if one is obviously better than the other in terms of A vs FA for overall image quality.

Thanks

06-15-2014, 03:05 AM   #2
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I went for 90mm D-FA, otherwise I would go for 120mm Macro or 200mm, but both of them are older designs and I am not sure how will they works on 645Z. But I will try them as soon as my Z arrives.
06-15-2014, 03:25 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ouroboros Quote
Just wanted to ask the people here about what the big differences would be and if one is obviously better than the other in terms of A vs FA for overall image quality.

A lenses are manual focus, an FA lenses are autofocus, but I'm sure you knew that already. The optical characteristics of each lens vary greatly, so I'd recommend referring to the lens reviews for the verdict on each lens. When you do get the 645Z, though, I'd also recommend picking up one of the modern lenses, such as the 55mm or 90mm.

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06-15-2014, 03:44 AM   #4
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I have several A and FA lenses that I've used over the past 3.5 years of shooting on the 645D. In general, both variants work well when the basic lens quality itself is okay. There are some dud lens designs like the 45mm that simply don't perform, but that doesn't have to do with auto vs. manual focus. Of course if you're buying second hand lenses you do need to ensure you get good ones, not ones that have been abused. I've purchased several through KEH.com and found each one to be in excellent condition.

I have both the A 75mm and FA 75mm, and find them similar in optical quality. I tend to use the FA more because of the particular purpose I have for this lens, which is casual and street type stuff where autofocus is helpful. I also have the A 120mm and it's great. The FA 120mm is reputed to be even better but I haven't gotten around to tracking one of those down.

Of course we don't know for sure yet how any particular lens will perform on the new 645Z but I'm betting that any lens that's acceptable on the D will be acceptable on the Z. The main issue I can foresee is the amount of chromatic aberration that may be present in older A lenses, some of which may be corrected for with FA lenses. But it has been a non-issue for me to date.

For your purposes, the new DFA 90mm could be very useful. It's a fully modern design, also image stabilized. Of course it's also quite pricey. For the cost of the DFA 90mm alone, you could kit yourself out with a decent array of other A or FA lenses. The DFA 90mm is one of the few lenses I'd like to have that I currently don't, mainly just an issue of cost. I'll have to keep putting it off as I look at upgrading a pair of 645D's to Z's; the budget can only take so much. The A or FA 120mm also would be useful, choice between them really just being based on how much you value the convenience of auto-focus vs. purchase price.

A dark horse to consider might also be the 67 format 105mm f/2.4, used via the 67-to-645 adapter. I have that as well and it's a great portrait lens. Manual focus of course. Some folks out there have done a tremendous amount of lovely portrait work with the 67 105mm on the 645D. A good copy of the lens can be had for a song, so it could be worth trying.

06-15-2014, 08:17 AM   #5
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Whether you get the A or FA 120, you will like the results. The only difference seems to be the AF. I had the 67 105mm, but changed it for the A 120--it is sharper and more versatile. With the 105mm, you only have aperture priority and manual exposure, center weighted metering, and the AWB does not work as well.

I had an A 75mm for a short time. It was OK.
06-15-2014, 05:23 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ouroboros Quote
I'm going to get a shiny new 645Z as soon as I can (I live in NZ so will be pretty hard, going to UK later this year so might be cheaper and easier to buy over there).

Anyway, I'm looking at glass and I had a quick search and looked at the lens reviews but I'm having trouble with the A and FA thing, I shoot portraits and staged product/art stuff. Should I be chasing A or FA lenses? There are some good deals around for both and the 75mm and 120mm are going to be the first ones I get.

Just wanted to ask the people here about what the big differences would be and if one is obviously better than the other in terms of A vs FA for overall image quality.

Thanks
Im the same as you, but live in Australia. Planning on buying the 645Z when funds permit. I have been collecting a few lenses since the early announcement of the Z and trying to get in quick before prices spike for the old lenses again (like they did with the 645D was released). So far I have got the 45-85 FA Zoom, the A 35mm , and the 120mm FA Macro (arrived today). Im very eager to test these lenses, but unfortunately I can only look and hold them until I get the camera Body. One thing I noticed is that the 35mm A feels ALOT better in the hand with incredible built quality and the glass just looks amazing! The FA's also feel good, but somewhat more flimsy than the older 35mm A?

Tom
06-16-2014, 12:42 AM   #7
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Tom - you have bought some fantastic lenses there and, from my experience on the 645D, you will not be disappointed when using them on the Z. The 45-85FA is brilliant on the 645D from 45 to around 65, and good from 65-85. The 35mm A is superb - one of my main 'go-to' lenses and never lets me down. I have the 120 A (optically the same, I think, to the 120FA, but manual focus only) and it also is superbly sharp (though I am not a fan of the bokeh in some circumstances). You should look forward with confidence to using all of those lenses!

---------- Post added 06-16-14 at 05:49 PM ----------

The 150mm FA is also very good indeed. The new 55 that is sold with the 645D/Z is very good (though not world class). And the 25, while pricey, is very nice. I am not a fan of the 200mm (having tried the 645A, the 645FA and the 67 versions, none of them blow me away). However, the 6x7 300mm EDIF and 75mm f2.8AL are absolutely first rate.
06-16-2014, 01:20 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ouroboros Quote
I'm going to get a shiny new 645Z as soon as I can (I live in NZ so will be pretty hard, going to UK later this year so might be cheaper and easier to buy over there).

Anyway, I'm looking at glass and I had a quick search and looked at the lens reviews but I'm having trouble with the A and FA thing, I shoot portraits and staged product/art stuff. Should I be chasing A or FA lenses? There are some good deals around for both and the 75mm and 120mm are going to be the first ones I get.

Just wanted to ask the people here about what the big differences would be and if one is obviously better than the other in terms of A vs FA for overall image quality.

Thanks
I have the 90mm DFA and its excellent. I use it for landscape and for product shots for ebay etc. It is so damn sharp and well corrected.

However..........

For product shooting I am not sure that a 645d/z is the right tool, really you would want a tilt lens. For the cost of the 90DFA you can get a Schneider PC TS Macro 90mm in Sony/Canon mount and use it on a Sony A7r and get better results mainly to do with the movements and the medium format type use.

BUT....

For portraits the 645D/Z would be great. I would get the 645Z with maybe the 120 FA or 90mm DFA. The main reason for the 90mm would be the stabiliser, it works great.

06-16-2014, 01:25 AM   #9
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That 90mm does look to be a thing of beauty. Would love to have it, but it's a focal length I don't use all that much (and have covered with the 6x7 90mm f2.8m which works very well), so the ROI just doesn't seem to make sense for me... Doesn't stop me lusting after it though!
06-16-2014, 04:02 AM   #10
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In reality I should have bought the 25mm first, but I had an insurance credit and it had to be spent. I was concerned about getting the 25 due to not being able to use my lee filters. Being a landscape shooter I struggle to find uses for the 90 Dfa and will most likely replace it and the 150FA with whatever tele zoom is on the roadmap if and when it comes out.

Damn it's nice though.
06-16-2014, 04:49 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ouroboros Quote
I'm going to get a shiny new 645Z as soon as I can (I live in NZ so will be pretty hard, going to UK later this year so might be cheaper and easier to buy over there).

Anyway, I'm looking at glass and I had a quick search and looked at the lens reviews but I'm having trouble with the A and FA thing, I shoot portraits and staged product/art stuff. Should I be chasing A or FA lenses? There are some good deals around for both and the 75mm and 120mm are going to be the first ones I get.

Just wanted to ask the people here about what the big differences would be and if one is obviously better than the other in terms of A vs FA for overall image quality.

Thanks
there's no real difference between the a and fa as far as iq is concerned. the real problem id that the zooms are heavy as hell. all of a sudden the supply of used lenses is drying up and those availiable are going up in price. the new lenses made for the 645d and z are priced out of site.
06-16-2014, 03:50 PM   #12
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I was curious if anyone has compared the FA 120mm against some of the other leading medium format lenses such as the Hasselblad HC Macro f/4 120mm II Lens. My intention in asking is not to try to see if I could adapt the Hassy for the Pentax, it's just that I've used the Hasselblad 120mm extensively and love it... it's my goto lens for portraits, extremely sharp with nice contrast and bokeh - It's my personal reference. My reason for asking is that I'm thinking of possibly getting the 645Z but I'm concerned that the lenses won't measure up to the lenses I've grown accustomed to (I know I'll loose the benefits of the leaf shutter - I'm concerned with IQ, Bokey, Sharpness, Contrast...). Any input from those that have used both would be most appreciated.

Last edited by stillsandvideo; 06-16-2014 at 04:10 PM.
06-16-2014, 04:25 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ed Hurst Quote
Tom - you have bought some fantastic lenses there and, from my experience on the 645D, you will not be disappointed when using them on the Z. The 45-85FA is brilliant on the 645D from 45 to around 65, and good from 65-85. The 35mm A is superb - one of my main 'go-to' lenses and never lets me down. I have the 120 A (optically the same, I think, to the 120FA, but manual focus only) and it also is superbly sharp (though I am not a fan of the bokeh in some circumstances). You should look forward with confidence to using all of those lenses!

---------- Post added 06-16-14 at 05:49 PM ----------

The 150mm FA is also very good indeed. The new 55 that is sold with the 645D/Z is very good (though not world class). And the 25, while pricey, is very nice. I am not a fan of the 200mm (having tried the 645A, the 645FA and the 67 versions, none of them blow me away). However, the 6x7 300mm EDIF and 75mm f2.8AL are absolutely first rate.
Hi Ed, Im was wondering about if I should get the 55mm (kit Lens) or not. I think the only lens I would benefit from now is the 25mm and possibly a Telephoto like the 300 or maybe 400FA. , but geez that 25mm is expensive. Maybe ill have to Stitch a couple shots from the 35mm A to get a wide wide scene.

tom
06-16-2014, 06:24 PM   #14
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I find the 55mm lens very useful to have. But YMMV. I have the 25DA and 35A - both are stunning. If I didn't shoot lots of water, I'd say stitching with the 35 would work fine (and be much cheaper). But for me, the 25mm helps a lot...
06-17-2014, 12:08 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by stillsandvideo Quote
I was curious if anyone has compared the FA 120mm against some of the other leading medium format lenses such as the Hasselblad HC Macro f/4 120mm II Lens. My intention in asking is not to try to see if I could adapt the Hassy for the Pentax, it's just that I've used the Hasselblad 120mm extensively and love it... it's my goto lens for portraits, extremely sharp with nice contrast and bokeh - It's my personal reference. My reason for asking is that I'm thinking of possibly getting the 645Z but I'm concerned that the lenses won't measure up to the lenses I've grown accustomed to (I know I'll loose the benefits of the leaf shutter - I'm concerned with IQ, Bokey, Sharpness, Contrast...). Any input from those that have used both would be most appreciated.
I am also interested in this comparsion. Please let me know if you manage to get more info on this.
Hass 120/4 costs 4 times more than same Pentax FA. So, is there any difference in IQ?
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