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07-31-2013, 03:55 AM   #1
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First 50mm manual lens?

My beloved has delayed for now my purchase of a F1.2 lens with a cold hard dose of common sense
Deep down I know she is right as a fully manual F1.2 lens is a hell of a step up for me. We have come to a compromise to satisfy my raging LBA, so Im going to buy a manual lens to practice with and see if it the whole thing is a good idea.
Im thinking either the Pentax M F1.4 or the M F1.7, obviously the F1.4 is slightly more, but can still be had for around the 50 quid mark.
If Im learning fully manual would I be better off getting the 1.4 lens as it is nearer to what I want eventually (F1.2) or should I save myself some cash and just get the F1.7 50mm to practice on as both lenses seem to be well regarded according to the database.

07-31-2013, 04:02 AM   #2
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Get anyone of them, they are all nice! There are so many well made 50's and I even miss my Chinon 50/1.7.
07-31-2013, 04:06 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by VisualDarkness Quote
Get anyone of them, they are all nice! There are so many well made 50's and I even miss my Chinon 50/1.7.
+1. Get started on manual lenses any way you can. If going to simply play, unless you really want super fast, and want the really narrow DOF of the 1.4 over the 1.7 the 1.7 will do everything you want, and is smaller lighter and cheaper
07-31-2013, 04:07 AM   #4
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The M50/1.7 is sharper than the M50/1.4 and still gives you excellent low-light and shallow DOF possibilities. And it's about half the price of the 1.4. It's also tiny. Can't go wrong with either lens (both are excellent lenses and excellent value) but in your shoes I'd go for the 1.7.

07-31-2013, 04:16 AM   #5
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I think pretty much any manual 50mm will give you a pleasant surprise. You can even get one that isn't Pentax brand, if it will be any cheaper. I have a plastic Miranda 50mm f1.9 ($25) and its almost as sharp as the M 50mm f1.7 (though, its overall rendering is very different)
But I think if you get the M 50mm f1.7 with a lens hood, you'll be golden. The f1.4 might be worth it if you find it for a good enough price or if you really need f1.4. Keep in mind that you probably won't be shooting wide open most of the time. I enjoy my M 50mm f1.7 tremendously, was the first manual lens I bought for a DSLR. You can get an A series for some more automation and less work for you, but the full manual lenses are great to start on.
07-31-2013, 04:24 AM   #6
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I recommend the A series lenses if you also want to use the flash - otherwise get the M series ...
07-31-2013, 04:32 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
I think pretty much any manual 50mm will give you a pleasant surprise. You can even get one that isn't Pentax brand, if it will be any cheaper. I have a plastic Miranda 50mm f1.9 ($25) and its almost as sharp as the M 50mm f1.7 (though, its overall rendering is very different)
But I think if you get the M 50mm f1.7 with a lens hood, you'll be golden. The f1.4 might be worth it if you find it for a good enough price or if you really need f1.4. Keep in mind that you probably won't be shooting wide open most of the time. I enjoy my M 50mm f1.7 tremendously, was the first manual lens I bought for a DSLR. You can get an A series for some more automation and less work for you, but the full manual lenses are great to start on.
I seems like the way to go is the F1.7 then, my thoughts with the 1.4 was that my eventual aim is a F1.2 lens which I would only be shooting wide open, so I was thinking that it would give me experience of thin DoF which I know I will get with the F1.2, but actually have no experience of?
07-31-2013, 04:41 AM - 1 Like   #8
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Believe me, f/1.7 gives a thin DOF on a relatively close-in subject. And the Pentax f/1.2 lenses aren't just for shooting wide open -- they are excellent all-rounders, too.

Another thing to consider is that the stock focusing screen on your K30 isn't going to show you what that shallow DOF looks like, even with the 1.7 lens. You can use focus confirmation and/or Live View, but you might also find yourself wanting to buy a focusing screen better tuned to fast lenses.

07-31-2013, 05:02 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
Believe me, f/1.7 gives a thin DOF on a relatively close-in subject. And the Pentax f/1.2 lenses aren't just for shooting wide open -- they are excellent all-rounders, too.

Another thing to consider is that the stock focusing screen on your K30 isn't going to show you what that shallow DOF looks like, even with the 1.7 lens. You can use focus confirmation and/or Live View, but you might also find yourself wanting to buy a focusing screen better tuned to fast lenses.
OH, thats not good news as I really don't fancy taking my camera apart.
The object of my desire is the Cosina 55mm F1.2, and I will only be using that creatively at 1.2, really don't intend to use it for normal photo's.
I think then that I better get the 1.4 and go off and google for focussing screen info/suppliers as I had never even considered that.
Thank you Baro-nite for the heads up..
07-31-2013, 05:21 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by edgedemon Quote
OH, thats not good news as I really don't fancy taking my camera apart.
The focusing screen is a user-serviceable part; you just take off the lens and there it is. You do have to be careful, though, to avoid scratching the screen (or anything else).
07-31-2013, 05:25 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
The focusing screen is a user-serviceable part; you just take off the lens and there it is. You do have to be careful, though, to avoid scratching the screen (or anything else).
Yeah, you have to be cautious and take it slow, but it's not hard since even I've managed to do it a couple of times.
07-31-2013, 05:48 AM   #12
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Are katzeye the best or is focusingscreen.com OK?
So many different designs, what is the best compromise for manual focus on a K30? Im slightly concerned as the Katzeye states that you can get darkness after F11 and I like my landscapes at F13 or above?
Would that mean I have swap out screens depending on what Im shooting?
07-31-2013, 06:06 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by edgedemon Quote
So many different designs, what is the best compromise for manual focus on a K30? Im slightly concerned as the Katzeye states that you can get darkness after F11 and I like my landscapes at F13 or above?
Would that mean I have swap out screens depending on what Im shooting?
I use the Canon S-type screen from focusingscreen.com and have been very happy with the purchase (twice, once for each of my DSLRs) and with the screen itself.

The issue with darkening in the viewfinder depends on the wide-open aperture of the lens, not the aperture you're shooting at (unless you're using a preset lens). And IMO it's not really an issue; I've used some pretty slow optics (such as an f/5.6 lens on a 2x teleconverter, effectively an f/11 lens) and found it reasonable. It can become an issue in really dim light with a slow lens, so YMMV. I for one tend not to use slow lenses in really dim light.
07-31-2013, 06:16 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
I use the Canon S-type screen from focusingscreen.com and have been very happy with the purchase
Am I missing something here, why are you buying a canon screen for a Pentax camera when they do Penax screens?

Would you mind sending a link so I can see the one you have please?
07-31-2013, 06:45 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by edgedemon Quote
Am I missing something here, why are you buying a canon screen for a Pentax camera when they do Penax screens?

Would you mind sending a link so I can see the one you have please?
Because the Canon screen is made for critical manual focus with very fast lens, the Pentax is made for f4-5.6 lenses.
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