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01-08-2011, 04:14 PM   #1
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F1.4 SMC-A lens question

Hello all - I have a K10D and still struggle with getting photos in low light conditions. I am looking to buy a Pentax F1.4 SMC-A lens from an individual. The lens is in great shape but I just don't know much about these lens. The lens reviews do not review this lens. What I would like to get is ya'll thoughts on this lens. He is asking $175 for this lens. Thanks in advance for your input.

01-08-2011, 04:22 PM   #2
Ole
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This lens is optically the same as the FA 50/1.4, with better mechanical build quality. Since it is an 'A' lens, it will work in all exposure modes. You cannot go wrong with it. Yes, I do own a copy and have had good results with it!

There are actually many reviews of this lens:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/lensreviews/SMC-Pentax-A-50mm-F1.4-Lens.html
01-08-2011, 04:24 PM   #3
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SMC Pentax-A 50mm F1.4 Lens Reviews - Pentax Lens Reviews & Pentax Lens Database

Do you mean This lens?

01-08-2011, 05:26 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ole Quote
This lens is optically the same as the FA 50/1.4, with better mechanical build quality. Since it is an 'A' lens, it will work in all exposure modes. You cannot go wrong with it. Yes, I do own a copy and have had good results with it!
I didn't realize the were better than the FA version...

They're about 160 GBP over here if it helps... The A-f1.7 can be had for between 50 and 80... again UK prices

01-08-2011, 06:21 PM   #5
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What lens are you using now that results in problems in low-light conditions? What sort of problems? It is important to take a closer look at that sort of thing to determine if the 50/1.4 by itself is going to solve them. For example, if the problem you're having is poor autofocus, this lens isn't going to fix it. If it is a problem of needing a wider aperture, it will fix that, but probably introduce some new problems such as manually focusing a razor-thin DOF in low light on a stock K10D focus screen. If it is a problem of shutter speeds being too long in low-light conditions, this lens will help somewhat(while introducing the new problem just mentioned) but it may be that the answer is to use a tripod.
01-08-2011, 09:54 PM   #6
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I shot with both the A and FA 50/1.4 before I sold the FA. I know they are the same optical formula, and I never did a direct comparison, but my impression is that the A lens is higher contrast, and somewhat sharper as well.
I kept my A lens instead of the FA.
01-09-2011, 01:33 PM   #7
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Ole - Thank you for sending me the lens review you did! That was very helpful. I am such a rookie that I would have never made the connection.
01-09-2011, 01:48 PM   #8
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Hello Mike - My problems are not with the AF hunting but rather the long shutter times and the subsequent movement from hand holding the camera. A great example of my frustration came on Christmas morning when I didn't capture the images I wanted because I didn't want to use the cameras flash and got blurry photos. I certainly understand the thin DOF issues that will accompany an f/1.4 setting if I am shouting with the aperature wide open. Like you said, I might be trading one set of problems for another. I certainly need to think through this. Thanks again for your questions.

01-10-2011, 07:43 AM   #9
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If you decide to get it, I have the same series A 50mm 1.4, and it's my favorite lens, at least when I want wide angle. I also have a couple of M series f2, a 1.7 and a 1.4, but the A is the best of the bunch, I use it all the time for macro and low light shooting, and at f1.4 it doesn't have a lot of depth of field, but when I can peg the focus it gets a very nice shot.

One thing though, that price seems a bit high, you might poke around online a bit and see what you can find, seems you should be able to get a better deal with a bit of shopping.
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