Apr 18, 2017

HD Pentax-D FA 15-30mm F2.8 ED SDM WR

Introduction

With the launch of the K-1 full frame camera, Pentax released three constant aperture lenses covering a large range, from ultra-wide to telephoto. We already reviewed the 70-200mm F2.8 and 24-70mm F2.8, and found them to be excellent performers. Today we continue this series with our test of the D FA 15-30mm F2.8 lens.

With this trio of fast, professional lenses, Pentax aims at gaining market shares in the full frame market. While only the 70-200mm is a STAR lens, all three are full-featured products, with silent autofocus, weather sealing and modern coatings.

Like the 24-70mm, the 15-30mm is in mostly a rebranded Tamron lens. The optical design is identical to the Tamron version. The only differences are the external appearance and the use of Pentax coatings. This is not a bad thing : the Tamron lens is well-regarded, and using a proven design allowed Pentax to offer more full frame lenses near the launch of their first full frame body.

Just like the Tamron version, the Pentax 15-30mm is generally appreciated, with a using rating averaging at 9.13/10 in our user database, beautiful samples in our lens club and samples photo archive. Like the other Tamron rebadged lens, the 15-30mm does not bear the "star" designation, but still comes with high expectations. 

In this 14-page review, we will look in detail at the 15-30mm. As always, we will describe its physical characteristics and test its optical performance. Read on to find out how we liked this new lens!


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