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12-15-2015, 01:24 PM   #31
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WOW! this is all wonderful, man you guys stepped up and really provided so good thoughts and I find my limited experience identifying with much that is said. Thanks guys you actually helped me out in ways you don't know. This is a cool thread and I appreciate it. Got to go counsel some clients so can't write more at this time. Thanks again.

12-15-2015, 02:30 PM - 2 Likes   #32
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Gee, Norm, I think you perceived disagreement where there was none. And the very last thing anyone who knows me would say about me is that I'm not paying attention.

I'm also not too fond of having my opinions thrown into some generic "BS" category. That's rude and uncalled for, particularly in this instance.

I have, indeed, looked at your comparisons several times over several years and find them very informative. I'm glad that you've done them and appreciative of the work that went into them. And I've commented positively on your work more than once.

My comment was neither directed at yours nor at the idea that many zooms, if not all, can produce excellent images that people like. You will notice in my signature that I have -- and still use -- my kit lenses because they continue to create some stunning images that I am happy to have. For other images where detail is very important to me, I want the sharpest lens I can get. On many an occasion, that has been from a favorite zoom.

I am not a follower of "the general wisdom" and, after considering others' input, I make my decisions and prefer to rely on my own experience to decide what I like. I spend a lot of time in experimentation and respect the likelihood that others do as well. Your posture that others here are sheep and just follow the herd is offensive. You may know of such folks, but to express this kind of generality in such terms does not make for good relationships. You might not give a crap about this, but I do. Please don't pick fights where there is none to be had. For God's sake, it's photography. People are starving somewhere. I daresay our indignation is better placed elsewhere.
12-15-2015, 02:38 PM - 3 Likes   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I think you haven't been looking at the posted examples.

Reading reviews is info, but, I got some really good images with the kit lens. You have to be careful that differences aren't exaggerated.

You have to go extreme to get a soft zoom, like zoom ratios over 7:1, the 18-25 kind of lenses, and even those lenses can be quite sharp. The out of focus areas can be a little rough. IN fact in the past I've suggested clean out of focus areas are what you pay for in a lot of expensive lenses. But that's true in both zooms and primes.

The reason I posted example images, in this thread was to cut through the BS, and just have people pick their favourite image based on what they liked, not the preconceived biases they bring to these kinds of tests. And down that, the prime did poorly. Sure you can say if you analyse technically the prime images was better than everything bu the Tamron 17-50, but other still preferred other images, including me old 35-80. which garnered more votes than chance, because of other qualities, colour rendition and micro contrast.

The fact that a lens might be slightly technically inferior, and honestly, you can't see a difference of 150 lw/ph, the difference between great lens and an average lens. Other qualities are mor important.

I hate to keep going on about this. But if you really believe this stuff, do what I did and prove it. Get some images, post a blind poll, and check the results.

There is absolutely no way to fudge these numbers. People picked the image they thought was the prime, based on their expect that the prime would be the image they liked best.

The poll.
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/10-pentax-slr-lens-discussion/302815-35mm-find-prime.html

21% picked th prime, 79% did not.
28% thought the 35-80mwas the best image at web size, which totally goes against you idea that cheap zooms can't compete.
28% thought the Sigma 18-250 was the best image, pixel peeping. That totally goes against your ideas about long focal length zooms.

You'd also see that the most popular image in the 70mm thread was my DA*60-250, over my Sigma 70 macro, which I never would have expected. The 70 macro is an amazing lens, well corrected, and used by Imaging resources for their resolution tests whenever possible.

You're not paying attention here.

I'm not sure how despite the evidence, people can just continue to make these kinds of genreal statements, based on reviewers opinions. DO you believe reviewers, or do you believe your eyes?

This has to be evaluated lens by lens, circumstance by circumstance. If the people in my test had just gone by the general wisdom, 79% of them wouldn't have bought the lens they like best. That is a pretty dismal piece of general advice.
But the point is, Norm, that you chose situations that deliberately did not stress your lens. This is a FA 77 at f2.2 iso 500 and 1/100 second and I would have no difficulty at all picking it out from your 18-135 shot at 70-ish mm and f5.6 (I think that's the max aperture at 70mm).



The same thing is true if you are shooting right into a bright light source with a lens like the DA 15 or DA 21.



I like zooms a lot and use them most of the time, but I do think we need to be honest about times when primes shine and when you want one on your camera and times when you use a zoom. Zooms are flexibility. Primes are for faster apertures, decreased flare and usually maximal sharpness.
12-15-2015, 03:08 PM   #34
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One of the reasons I went for primes was due to size. If I have the 35 2.4 on my camera it is like there is no lens one it and in a small bag designed for compact cameras I have the DA 15 and the DA70. Any two of those three fit into the bag which straps onto my belt or can go into a jacket pocket, especially in the winter once the togue and gloves are being worn. I also decided that I wanted to have a carry around zoom sometimes plus neither my wife nor myself had a WP lens so I picked up the 18-50 WR and it can replace the 35 2.4 in my walking about. I think for the most part the 15/35/70 covers most of my needs unless there is wildlife or sports involved. I do also have the F50 1.7 which I stopped carrying about when I got the 70.

I do not have the DA 21 but did use the Fuji X100 with a 23 mm so I think the 21 and 50 would also make a nice pair of lenses. I cannot speak of the new fast primes as have no interest in owning them and in many cases of paying for them

12-15-2015, 03:55 PM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I looked at your images and I don't see what you're talking about in terms of distortion, which is why a blind test is so valuable. The big question should be " am I seeing something other people are seeing, or am I just going with my biases because I know which is which?
Norm, not meant to be argumentative, as my main focus in photography is "people" shots, so I am just a bit more aware (and less tolerant) of lens distortions than others.
I include here a photo of mine and another one (not mine so I need to remove it soon) to show what I mean. Most lens distortions as some suggested that it can be corrected during post processing (Silkypix, LR etc.) which I agree, although some are, but not always as in this example below (not sure if this one is even possible?).



As I said I am quite happy with my 20-40 (which I consider it as a stack of primes)... here is an example,

12-15-2015, 04:00 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by hcc Quote
The FA Limiteds and DA Limiteds are two very-well regarded series of Pentax prime lenses that you should consider.

Without much info on what you are shooting, one can only suggest some personal preferences. For me, I would suggest the DA15mm Ltd, FA31mm f1.8 Ltd and DA*55mm f1.4.

My 5 cents...
It's not 5 cents . . . probably closer to $2,000 U.S.!

---------- Post added 12-15-15 at 06:14 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
If you can actually see it.
I've had fisheye images come out where the distortion was completely masked by the terrain being photographed. Distortion is not a problem on modern zooms. Like the above data, a prime may be better, but can you see it in the image comparing side by side? It's a technical security blanket, that may or may not improve your image, depending on what you are photographing.

IN practice sometime you'll have an image negatively affected by distortion.
Sometimes you'll have an image positively and more natural looking because of distortion.

Most of the time, it makes no difference. Remember, the human eye distorts images, your eye is used to correcting for it. Sometimes if it's not there, the subject looks artificial, other times just really weird with wide angle aspherical lenses.

I looked at your images and I don't see what you're talking about in terms of distortion, which is why a blind test is so valuable. The big question should be " am I seeing something other people are seeing, or am I just going with my biases because I know which is which?
Normhead. What you said, land forms completely masks the distortion. I have definitely noticed that, for example, at a lake, you can sometimes frame a shot so that the shoreline contours are quite distorted, but not at all different in appearance than how the lake COULD have appeared.
12-15-2015, 04:51 PM   #37
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QuoteQuote:
But the point is, Norm, that you chose situations that deliberately did not stress your lens. This is a FA 77 at f2.2 iso 500 and 1/100 second and I would have no difficulty at all picking it out from your 18-135 shot at 70-ish mm and f5.6 (I think that's the max aperture at 70mm).
I have said many times aperture is whole different issue. So ya, one lens, any lens at ƒ2.2 is going to look different than itself at 5.6 forget about any other lens. (duh) Pullease. But thanks for explaining that. I guess I need to expand on every little detail exponentially and not leave anything out, every time I post. However that being said if you're talking a da 50-135 image taken at 2.8 and 70mm, probably not so much difference. I could turn it around and say The Sigma 18-35 ƒ1.8, ƒ1,8 will produce a different looking image at 21mm, than my 21 ltd (prime) at ƒ3.2 and that is exactly my point. It's not a zoom vs prime issue. Its a lens versus lens issue.

I can't see how you're going to win this, but then you don't spend the time in research and testing that I do. Maybe when you retire. I can see you've got your hands full doing real life things over at your place. I miss that stuff.

QuoteQuote:
I like zooms a lot and use them most of the time, but I do think we need to be honest about times when primes shine and when you want one on your camera and times when you use a zoom. Zooms are flexibility. Primes are for faster apertures, decreased flare and usually maximal sharpness.
You're enough to make a guy tear his hair out. Wait, i don't have much hair, well if I did have hair.

Look over the numbers for the SMC FA* 24mm ƒ2

Take your pick, vignetting (and this an FF lens on APS-c, borders CA, even distortion. The lens does hold a candle to the DA 18-135 except of maybe ƒ2 and ƒ2.8 if you don't look at the borders. What you aren't seeing is, if you pick horrible zooms, and I pick horrible primes , we can keep a this all day. The fact is for most of the range of the Sigma 18-35, it's the best option. You really should just give up and quit comparing 1000 dollar primes to 400 dollar zooms. That's just nonsense. It's a shame I have to point that out.

Why y'all want to make this so damn difficult. If the guy wants a prime I say go for it, but make it an educated decision. Don't buy into this "primes are so much better" non-sense. Buy the lens you need for what you want to do. Prime or zoom, don't get caught up in that.

The only accurate statement is, you have to buy the lens that's best for what you want you want. Zoom or prime has not much to do with that. If you want fast from 18-35, apart from 31mm the Sigma 18-35 is your lens. Sometimes the primes are faster, sometimes they aren't. Sometimes the primes are sharper, sometimes they aren't. Sometimes the distortion matters, sometimes it doesn't. It's case by case.

Last edited by normhead; 12-15-2015 at 05:24 PM.
12-15-2015, 05:44 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
B) 21ltd, 40ltd, 70ltd
+1

Flickriver: kh1234567890's photos tagged with da21
Flickriver: kh1234567890's photos tagged with da40
Flickriver: kh1234567890's photos tagged with da70

Don't bother with the DA15 unless you are into shots of empty landscapes, converging roads, distorted people and naff sunset skies

And a cheap kit WR zoom for when it is raining ...

Flickriver: kh1234567890's photos tagged with smcpda1855mmf3556alwr

No doubt others will come up with more exotic suggestions.

12-15-2015, 05:52 PM - 1 Like   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I have said many times aperture is whole different issue. So ya, one lens, any lens at 2.2 is going to look different than itself at 5.6 forget about any other lens. (duh) Pullease. But thanks for explaining that. I guess I need to expand on every little detail exponentially and not leave anything out, every time I post. However that being said if you're talking a da 50-135 image taken at 2.8 and 70mm, probably not so much difference. I could turn it around and say The Sigma 18-35 1.8, 1,8 will produce a different looking image at 21mm, than my 21 ltd (prime) at 3.2 and that is exactly my point. It's not a zoom vs prime issue. Its a lens versus lens issue.

I can't see how you're going to win this, but then you don't spend the time in research and testing that I do. Maybe when you retire. I can see you've got your hands full doing real life things over at your place. I miss that stuff.



You're enough to make a guy tear his hair out. Wait, i don't have much hair, well if I did have hair.

Look over the numbers for the SMC FA* 24mm 2

Take your pick, vignetting (and this an FF lens on APS-c, borders CA, even distortion. The lens does hold a candle to the DA 18-135 except of maybe 2 and 2.8 if you don't look at the borders. What you aren't seeing is, if you pick horrible zooms, and I pick horrible primes , we can keep a this all day. The fact is for most of the range of the Sigma 18-35, it's the best option. You really should just give up and quit comparing 1000 dollar primes to 400 dollar zooms. That's just nonsense. It's a shame I have to point that out.

Why y'all want to make this so damn difficult. If the guy wants a prime I say go for it, but make it an educated decision. Don't buy into this "primes are so much better" non-sense. Buy the lens you need for what you want to do. Prime or zoom, don't get caught up in that.

The only accurate statement is, you have to buy the lens that's best for what you want you want. Zoom or prime has not much to do with that. If you want fast from 18-35, apart from 31mm the Sigma 18-35 is your lens. Sometimes the primes are faster, sometimes they aren't. Sometimes the primes are sharper, sometimes they aren't. Sometimes the distortion matters, sometimes it doesn't. It's case by case.
The question was asked if modern zooms were so good, were primes necessary. The answer is clearly that if you shoot at f5.6 or f8 all of the time, then zooms are more than adequate. I shoot my primes at f2 and f2.8 a lot and yes, they are sharper than my DA * zooms at f2.8. The Sigma 18-35 f1.8 would certainly take the place of a lot of wide-ish primes, if it weren't for the focusing issues that seem to plague it.

I am not sure about the FA *24. I've seen great shots from it, but it is often disparaged in reviews. I hope Pentax releases a new 20mm f2 prime when they release the K-1. I own the DFA 24-70 f2.8 and that is a chunk of glass...
12-15-2015, 10:34 PM   #40
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12-15-2015, 11:58 PM   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
The only accurate statement is, you have to buy the lens that's best for what you want you want. Zoom or prime has not much to do with that. If you want fast from 18-35, apart from 31mm the Sigma 18-35 is your lens.
that zoom has gotten some bad press over it's weak af consistency, and it's big and clumsy compared to small primes like the sigma dn series, which also have better pq... whoops, can't get that cheap dn glass in k-mount things are getting complicated...

QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Sometimes the primes are faster, sometimes they aren't. Sometimes the primes are sharper, sometimes they aren't. Sometimes the distortion matters, sometimes it doesn't. It's case by case.
so the solution to your hypothetical "case by case" is to own one of everything, both good and bad, then have to think about what to use, so that you don't make the mistake of bringing the wrong lens for the right job?

when you know enough about photography to understand what lens should be used where, in other words you can see the difference, you'll only want to own good glass, that works well for all situations.

but you'll have to compromise because of price, size, weight, convenience, and pq considerations.
12-16-2015, 01:29 AM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by osv Quote
that zoom has gotten some bad press over it's weak af consistency, and it's big and clumsy compared to small primes like the sigma dn series, which also have better pq... whoops, can't get that cheap dn glass in k-mount things are getting complicated...
Better PQ?

Such a bluffer.

Unluckily for him, I actually own all three of those DN lenses - again, Osv doesn't know what he talks about.

But that never stops him.

Last year in order to defend the E-mount lens availability he claimed there were six of them.

That's because he counted the silver and black versions. ☺ (thumbs down).

Last edited by clackers; 12-16-2015 at 01:48 AM.
12-16-2015, 02:02 AM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by mhsp Quote
How do you post a photo on the forum?
Check out THIS THREAD
12-16-2015, 02:15 PM   #44
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Thank you Sandy I appreciate it
12-16-2015, 02:26 PM   #45
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Geez! The guy asked a simple question, must it turn into a mud wrestling event?
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