A Tale of Two Pentaxes...

Discussion in 'Pentax' started by thebokehking, Nov 4, 2006.

  1. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest

    While at the Javitz show on Thursday I had the opportunity to sample
    both the 43/1.9 Limited lens in black (Yum!) and the somewhat rare to
    find (or buy) 50mm f/1.4 FA - unfortunately I was only able to test
    these on a K10 (DSLR) body (and a K100?) so with the 1.5 crop factor I
    did not get the chance to see the true difference in angle of
    view/coverage I would have gotten had I used a full frame 35mm SLR
    (mine unfortunately was not with me at the time). The 43 had very nice
    bokeh but the 1.4's bokeh was "sublimeish". I am trying to choose
    between the two lenses, can't afford to get them both (and even getting
    one might take a bit of saving too). I am aware of the 43's "sublime"
    micro-contrast and 3D bokeh, but only through web examples. I also know
    that it is less than sharp wide open but improves a stop or two down
    and that it has fall off in focus/slight exposure darkening arond the
    edges?/corners. As just said the 50mm 1.4 has sublime bokeh but its
    bokeh (to me) doesn't appear as three dimensional in its transition as
    the Limited lens (again from web examples only - that's all, besides
    the show, that I have to go on other than other's opinions). I have
    also been to Stan Halpin's site (pardon my English/spelling) and the
    PDML (not to mention read posts in this group on the subject - but I'll
    mention it anyways ;-)). Cost (when/if I can afford them) is not a
    factor (or won't be when I have the money ;-)). I can't decide on which
    lens I should get first and I am equally torn between both lens's bokeh
    rendition and am not sure whether the 7mm difference will or won't
    afffect my shooting style (mainly half shots of people w/ a selective
    focus background and some environment (which leaves out the 77 Limited
    and 85 lenses in their various incarnations) and a wide range of
    general usage). I'd flip a coin to decide but it would probably stand
    on edge ;-).

    Any thoughts (both from Pentaxian users/others)?

    Thanks in advance :).
    thebokehking, Nov 4, 2006
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  2. thebokehking

    Tony Polson Guest

    The problem is that people will prefer one lens or the other according
    to their personal taste. They are very different lenses, and their
    differences are pretty clear cut. So your problem is actually in
    deciding what your personal taste is. :)

    On maximum aperture, the 50mm f/1.4 wins with almost a whole stop more
    useable aperture. If you shoot in low light, the f/1.4 will allow you
    to make the shots you simply couldn't get with an f/1.9 maximum

    On sharpness, the 43mm Limited wins. Wide open, it is significantly
    sharper than the 50mm FA. However, at f/4-5.6 there is little to
    choose between them, and at f/8, the 50mm FA is very sharp indeed.

    On bokeh, the 50mm FA wins. Wide open, its background bokeh is as
    smooth as any lens I have ever used, including a selection of Leica
    glass known for its bokeh. The 43mm Limited has bokeh that is (in my
    opinion, but based on extensive tests) slightly on the harsh side of
    neutral. Specular highlights are rendered brighter on the edge than
    in the middle, and that type of bokeh can never be described as

    On 3D micro-contrast, the 43mm Limited wins. The 3D rendering is
    similar to that of classic Zeiss lenses. The 50mm FA does not have
    the same ability to separate elements of the shot at differing
    distances from the lens.

    So it's up to you. Decide what is more important, and make your

    My own choice was the 50mm f/1.4, in my case the A version. That's
    because I value smooth its superior wide-open bokeh over the 43mm
    Limited's superior 3D micro-contrast. The only way to get both is to
    buy Leica lenses, which is what I did.

    There is another possibility; the Pentax 50mm f/1.7 FA has even better
    sharpness than the 50mm f/1.4, and the bokeh is very nearly as good.
    Its 3D micro-contrast is somewhere between the 50mm f/1.4 and the 43mm

    It is also much cheaper to buy - alas it is no longer available new,
    but used versions can be picked up on eBay for very little money. The
    SMC-F and SMC-A versions are even cheaper. That's the lens I would
    recommend if you want a strong compromise between the 50mm f/1.4 FA
    and the 43mm Limited, and especially if the high cost of the those
    lenses presents a problem at this time.

    Good luck with your decision. Let us know how it goes.
    Tony Polson, Nov 4, 2006
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  3. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest

    Thanks Tony. An excellent, detailed and thoughtful reply. My response
    folloows sandwhiched between your response below...

    I prefer coffee and chocolate over vanilla, but that wont help me here

    Or may be it will... If the 43 is coffee and the 50/1.4 is chocolate
    then I prefer the Jamoca Almond Fudge... Well that worked -- not ;-)
    Very true. But on the other hand I wouldn't be adverse switching from a
    slower (ie. 200) to a faster (ie. ISO 400) speed film when/if the
    light requires it.
    Good to know. That surprises me, from what I heard about the 43's
    softness wide open I was expecting the 50/1.4 to be better in this

    However, at f/4-5.6 there is little to
    Its a poor man's Leica bokeh or "Polkeh" for short - bring in the
    accordians, LOL. :)

    The 43mm Limited has bokeh that is (in my
    Actually at the show the (specular lights I saw in the distance had
    neutral bokeh (a flat evenly illuminated disc) no "bell syndrome"
    (bright ringing along the edges). However I had the lens stopped down
    to about f/2.8 I believe. Ironically I did see a posterization/rings
    around the hilights in a K100 (or K110, I forget which) inkjet sample
    image (shot of a parked bicycle on a street sidewalk at night with
    people walking in the background) but this was probably due to poor
    camera processing of an extremely bright light against a darkish

    If only there were a 50mm Limited combining the best of both the 43
    (micro contrast, 3D bokeh and build quality with the sublime almost
    liquidy soft backgrounds of the 50/1.4 (and 1.7 too).
    The more I know the harder it gets to choose -- how's the bokeh on a
    pinhole lens?,I hear they're cheap and they only come in one flavor -

    I guess there's no Leica to Pentax adapter. Don't want to have to buy a
    Canon EOS (with adapter) just to get a Leica lens ;-).

    I actually tried the Pentax 50/1.7 FA (a friend has it and I've shot
    with it). It has excellent/soft bokeh and good sharpness wide open (and
    slightly stopped down if I remember my prints/data correctly but I
    personally find the micro-contrast as normal (maybe its just the way I
    respond to it) as opposed to the 43's more etched Leica-like

    Have you shot with the 43 wide open much? Were you aware of any
    softness, exposure vignetting and/or lack of sharpness wide open? If so
    what was the subject matter, lighting conditions, etc. and did they
    have any influence over what defects you saw (ie. if you take lots of
    available light shots with either plain walls or bright skies in the
    background you'd be more likely to see exposure fall off, if you take
    shots of the sides of buildings, bridges or other intricately detailed
    shots you might be able to notice edge sharpness fall off and/or

    It was actually a three-legged race in the beginning - the 50/1.7 being
    the third lens/leg of the race - but once I saw how sublime the bokeh
    was of the 50/1.4 I figured that a slight drop in sharpness wide open
    (if any?) would be a good trade off for sublime bokeh and the price
    difference wouldn't make or break me one way or the other so that
    narrowed it down to just the two legs of the 43 (and its micro
    contrast/3D bokeh) vs. the 50/1.4 (and its sublime bokeh). From past
    experience I'd say most of the time I'd be using either lens between
    wide open and f/4 to get a selective focus (depending on distance to
    the subject and the background) effect.

    Speaking of which, have you shot any close (5 feet or less) shots of
    people/objects with either lens and has their been a great or at least
    significant difference in selective focus blurring of the background
    between the longer/faster 50/1.4 and the shorter/slightly slower (just
    under a stop) 43 Limited?
    I'll let you know. I'm still deciding how to decide right now :) Its
    like deciding whether I want to keep my left or right arm... perhaps
    Ill go with prosthetics... ;-)

    Thanks again and in advance for your reply/ies, Tony.
    thebokehking, Nov 4, 2006
  4. thebokehking

    Tony Polson Guest

    I do try. But I'm not the Pentax expert here; Peter Boorman
    (Bandicoot) has knowledge that I am never likely to equal, let alone
    surpass, especially as I only use my small remaining Pentax outfit
    when my Canon EOS outfit (with Canon, Leica and Carl Zeiss glass) lets
    me down ...
    OK, I will try to keep my replies brief.
    OK, understood. That's almost a pity, because the advantage of an
    f/1.4 lens extends far beyond low light shooting. If you want to
    separate a sharply focused subject from a defocused background, a 50mm
    at f/1.4 does it vastly better than a 43mm f/1.9, especially one with
    bokeh that is less than smooth.
    I am assuming that the FA version is optically similar to the A
    version, which is the one I tested in detail. I expect it has the
    same optical formula but different, better coatings.

    The A version is a gem. It is significantly sharper than the
    apparently identical M version, which is very soft wide open. The
    optical formula was slightly changed for the A version, and coatings
    improved. Outside the Leica range, I think this is probably the
    finest 50mm f/1.4 lens ever made.
    There's nothing "poor man" about this lens. It is optically superior
    to every version of the Leica M 50mm f/1.4 Summilux except the current
    ASPH version. That is high praise. My only slight criticism is that,
    like most Pentax lenses, the rectilinear distortion is higher than I
    would like, for example in architectural photography.
    A 6 MP DSLR is so far away from the resolving power of film that I
    would prefer not to judge lenses on their performance on that type of
    camera. Subtle out of focus effects are easily smudged by noise
    reduction and then don't reappear after unsharp mask is applied.
    I think the 50mm f/1.7 comes very close to that ideal. It also has
    lower rectilinear distortion than either of the other lenses.
    I realise you are not serious here, but used Leica R bodies are very
    cheap now, and so are the older R lenses. Only if you want the very
    latest 3-cam/ROM Leica R glass does it get expensive. An R5, R6 or R7
    body and three lenses is now a realistic proposition for those still
    using film.
    I don't disagree about the 50mm f/1.7, although I feel that the
    micro-contrast is more apparent than with the 50mm f/1.4. But the
    only people who would describe the 43mm as Leica-like are Pentax
    enthusiasts. It is not remotely up to Leica standards. Its
    micro-contrast is interesting but it falls down in too many areas to
    justify comparison with Leica glass.

    For example, compare the 43mm f/1.9 Limited with the inexpensive 1970s
    40mm f/2 Summicron-C for the Leica CL. The Summicron beats the
    Limited in every single aspect - sharpness, distortion, bokeh, 3D
    micro-contrast, and even price! Leica M users find the 40mm Summi
    compares very well with the (justifiably) much-lauded 35mm Summicron
    which sells for several times the price.

    A Leica CL outfit with 40mm f/2 Summicron-C and 90mm f/4 Elmar-C
    lenses is a very good buy and offers a very low cost entry to Leica
    ownership. But be warned, you would probably be hooked!
    My comparison shots are long gone. Once I made the decision to go
    with the 50mm f/1.4 there was no need to keep them. But I recall
    being impressed with the wide open performance. From memory, the
    sharpness was very good in the centre - better than the 50mm f/1.4 but
    not the f/1.7 - and good at the edges. Vignetting was OK, if I recall
    correctly. I cannot recall how the lenses compared at f/2, which is a
    major omission. I'm sorry. I suppose the availability of f/1.4
    weighed fairly heavily when I made my decision.
    I recall that I found that, compared with the 50mm f/1.4, the 43mm had
    "Limited" ability (sorry!) to defocus backgrounds when used wide open,
    partly because of the "Limited" maximum aperture and partly because of
    its very disappointing harsh rendition of out of focus highlights.
    That was more than enough reasons for me to reject the 43mm lens.

    Perhaps you should try to borrow both lenses and conduct a trial of
    your own in exactly the conditions you find most important. In the
    end, there is no substitute for conducting your own tests!
    You're welcome. I would very much like you to have Peter Boorman's
    opinion on these lenses, as I know he has a rather more favourable
    opinion of the 43mm Limited than I do. In the interests of balance, a
    contrary view would be welcome. Bandicoot, where are you?

    Tony Polson, Nov 4, 2006
  5. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest

    Some quick responses to your much appreciated responses... :)


    I'm anxious to here what Peter (as well as anybody else with
    experience) has to say too.

    I don't know exactly how Zeiss/Leica glass would let you down, even
    Canon (regular not L stuff) is adequate for most uses.

    But on the other hand I wouldn't be adverse switching from a
    Hilight rendition aside, 1 stop makes _that_ much difference with
    regards to selective focus effects?

    Outside the Leica range, I think this is probably the
    Better than the 50mm/1.4 Zeiss Planar Pop raved about a few years back?
    High praise indeed. I meant nothing ill-fitting about the Pentax lens,
    what I meant was that its price (in relation to a Leica lens of the
    same aperture/focal length) made it a "Poor man's Leica bokeh" lens
    (ie. something normal folks without multi-digit bank accounts could
    afford, used or new.

    My only slight criticism is that,
    Fortunately, the people I photograph have few straight lines :).

    Most? if not all were probalby taken at 2.8 at the show I might have
    taken a few wide open but can't recall. Should have brought a digital
    media card (and definitely should have brought at least my ZX-5n.

    Ironically I did see a posterization/rings
    Even though what you say is true about the resolving power of a 6MP
    DSLR, especially for large blow-ups, there was something ver funky
    (read "strange"/"weird" about the way it was processing some of the
    background areas in the shot with its posterization effects. The
    average person wouldn't know what to look for or even care if they saw
    it, possibly, but I would. If I wanted strange color effects I'd play
    with curves (or whatever) to get it.

    On an unrelated note, they had a large 20x? 200x? crop comparison
    between the K10 with 16-45 lens and the D80 with either the 18-70 or
    18-50? lens. The Pentax smoked the Nikon. (I'm only reporting what I
    saw, so no flames, please, Nikonians). From what I believe they told me
    were unaltered digi files, the Nikon's rendition with its kit lens (I'm
    pretty sure lens here plays as much of a factor as camera in this
    instance) was bluish, contrasty, lost hilights and details not only due
    to contrast but lack of resolution. The Pentax's lens' color rendition
    was not only warmer and possibly more saturated but it had a clarity
    (detail and possibly presence too) the Nikon lens couldn't touch. Sorry
    if I gross anyone out here but the Pentax showed "gobs" more detail in
    the pores on the nose (on the Nikon most of those pores vanished
    completely which might make it a better lens for portraiture if the
    color rendition were better and it was less "soot and chalk" contrasty)
    and somewhat more detail on her small eyelashes. For anyone that cares,
    the model was Asian (Japaneese?) and she had some out of focus folliage
    and a small piece of sky in the background. Conditions were overcast.

    Of the 10MP cameras I've seen, best results came from the Sony a, which
    amazingly, in both detail/clarity, color rendition and saturation as
    well as overall "look" came the closes to film (if not real life) I've
    ever seen in the 13x19" Epson? inkjet sample book I perused at the Sony
    booth. Just amazing quality. Probably due in part to its new "Bionz"
    color engine. Unfortunately the autofocus seemed somewhat slow under
    the dim conditions and longish zoom I had on the camera and the
    viewfinder, of course, was rather darkish (which, admittedly may also
    be due tosome extent to the slow aperture of the zoom and the lowish
    light levels around the booth, at least compared to the seemingly more
    brightly and evenly lit Pentax booth. The Sony a is based on the Maxxum
    5D body. What they really need is the innards/AF module of the Maxxum 7
    (film camera) in the same sized body. Street price, supposedly, is in
    the high fives for the body USD so it would seem a bargain, given the
    limitations I've just mentioned. Some Zeiss lenses are being made for
    it (16-45 zoom as well as some fixed focal length teles, no normal
    lens, unfortunately).

    On the K10 Pentax besides the same? sensor as the Sony (at least both
    are 10MP and have built-in anti-shake and sensor cleaning) I liked the
    TAV mode (which allows one to switch to aperture or shutter priority
    and the camera bumps up (or down) the ISO automatically when the
    shutterspeed/aperture is insufficient for the light level (brilliant
    idea if you are shooting quickly on the fly and want to make specific
    settings of aperure and/or shutterspeed without having to reset the
    ISO) and it also has a SV (sensitivity) mode that allows you to set ISO
    within a range just by the use of the thumbwheel. I also liked its in
    camera color wheel that allows you to move a dot between quadrants to
    fine tune color balance exactly.
    I want less equipment/systems not more, though it rarely seems to work
    out that way...
    Yes, but can you Krazy (super) glue it to a Pentax K mount?
    I probably would, except for the fact that I can't stand not seeing the
    bokeh so a rangefinder camera or lens, no matter how great is out of
    the question for me - please don't suggest a Leica M8 as a solution
    unless you plan to buy one for me ;-).
    That's OK, thanks forthe other coments, though.
    7 little mms of difference and one f/stop, who would have thought that
    the selective focus effect would be that marked.
    Yes, definitely but there are no "Pentax candy shops" around here, my
    friend only has the 50/1.7 (and I know how that looks already) and my
    finances can't swing buying both lenses from a camera shop and
    returning the one I don't like as much minus the restocking fee. But
    good idea...

    "Calling all Bandicoots" are you there? ;-) :)

    Thanks again.
    thebokehking, Nov 4, 2006
  6. thebokehking

    Tony Polson Guest

    I've never had problems with the lenses, it is just that the camera
    body occasionally lets me down.
    Yes, because the Pentax has far superior bokeh. Zeiss has always
    optimised designs for sharpness, low distortion and 3D micro contrast.
    Good bokeh has been delivered by luck or by accident. ;-)
    Way back in the days of SMC Takumars, the price differential between
    the SMC Takumar 50mm f/1.4 and the Leica Summilux 59mm f/1.4 was not
    that great. Since then, Pentax has embraced composite plastics and
    mass production; Leica still makes lenses largely by hand.
    So that's why Pentax lenses are a good choice for people photography!
    Some months ago I read an article about the difference between the way
    Japanese people looked at an image and the way Americans regarded it.
    A much higher proportion of Japanese valued the quality of the areas
    away from the subject.

    Do you have Japanese blood? :)
    Exactly. Or you might buy a Konica Minolta 7D.
    That's interesting. I haven't had a chance to try the K10D or the D80
    but the Pentax 16-45mm is a very good lens. I was at the Pentax
    dealer earlier this week and he was offering this lens at an excellent
    price. I was sorely tempted, but as I said before, my Pentax gear
    only gets called out when the Canon fails me and I can use the money
    better elsewhere.

    The Nikon 18-70mm is a fine performer, much better than the average
    kit lens, so I suspect most of the difference you saw is likely to be
    in the post-processing. I have tried the D200 and was very impressed;
    it certainly beats the EOS 30D. But the D80 is a bit of an enigma.
    The Sony a100 is a remarkable achievement. It follows two truly
    woeful efforts from Konica Minolta who deserved to go bust. Instead,
    they got rescued, and Sony have done well with the a100.
    The Zeiss 35mm f/2, 50mm f/1.4 and 85mm f/1.4 will apparently be
    available in the Sony mount before long.
    I think the Pentax K10D uses a similar sensor to the D200, not the
    D80. They are all 10 MP.
    I understand. I was merely pointing out that Leica R ownership
    recently got much cheaper.
    I'm buying one for myself, so that must come first. ;-)
    The effect of the two combined is significant.
    In this case, eBay could be your friend. Many of my comparisons were
    done by buying the relevant lenses on eBay and re-selling the one(s) I
    did not want. But the 43mm was a loaner from my friendly Pentax
    You're welcome.
    Tony Polson, Nov 4, 2006
  7. thebokehking

    Bandicoot Guest

    I'm told that the F is the same design as the A, but that slight changes
    were made for the FA that made it slightly sharper, without, supposedly,
    affecting the bokeh or contrast. I haven't used an FA 1.4 enough to be able
    to say if this is true. Most FA lenses are the same formula as their A
    equivalents, so this is an exception to the rule.

    Apologies, I was at a party ;-)

    Will write some thoughts in a separate post....

    Bandicoot, Nov 5, 2006
  8. thebokehking

    Bandicoot Guest

    I guess you've not had to photograph Grace Jones then....


    Bandicoot, Nov 5, 2006
  9. thebokehking

    Bandicoot Guest

    Well, not easy to add a lot to this thread now, but here's my experience.
    Note that (like Tony) the 50mm f1.4 that I know is the A version. The FA is
    supposed to be slightly sharper, but otherwise almost identical.

    I have and use both (the other 50s I use, though less often than these two,
    are the f1.7 M - I may replace it with an A one day - the f1.2 A, and the
    f2.8 Macro in both A and FA versions).

    I feel the Limited is slightly the sharper of the two, and tends to be my
    preferred lens for subject matter with DoF that extends from front to back.
    Such subjects can lack the 3D feel, and the 43 Limited is very good at
    keeping the sense of depth in a picture without needing to use out of focus
    backgrounds to achieve it. ie., it's a great landscape lens. I think it
    also has slightly less distortion than the f1.4 50mm, though have to admit
    that this is a subjective view, since I haven't tested it properly for this.
    (If I need ultra-low geometric distortion in a 50mm I will use one of the
    macros, for preference.)

    I don't find the Limited to have 'bad' bokeh, but I don't like the way it
    renders OoF highlights, and avoid it for such subjects. However, it has
    very good coma correction, so it is a very good lens for (especially off
    centre) specular highlights that ARE in focus - this makes it a good lens
    for night-time shots of city scenes, industry, etc. (The 31mm Limited is
    even better in this regard.)

    The 50mm f1.4 deals better with OoF highlights, and has generally 'creamier'
    bokeh I feel, but doesn't impart quite as much 3D 'separation' to different
    planes of the image when both are 'in focus' as the 43mm does. For me this
    makes it the better lens to use when using DoF to isolate a subject, and
    _very slightly_ less good as a landscape lens. I emphasise that this is a
    slight thing: some people might not feel there was much difference, or maybe
    place them in the other order.

    The angle of view of the 43mm does 'feel' a lot more different to that of a
    50mm than that small (14%) difference would suggest. I like it a lot.
    Because the lens works so well for subjects that are sharp front to back,
    and because of its AoV, it is very nice for the sort of street or crowd
    photography where you pre-set the aperture to give plenty of DoF.

    The difference in FL combined with the speed difference does also make a
    significant difference in how shallow you can make the DoF by shooting wide
    open. Basically, if you want to throw a background 'significantly' out of
    focus, it needs to be a fair bit further behind your subject if you use the
    43mm than with the 50mm.

    Somewhere I have posted a link before to a shot I did at f1.2, if you want
    to see what really shallow DoF is like. The difference between this shot
    and what you can do with the f1.4 is, I would say, less than the
    difference - in terms of DoF - between the 50mm f1.4 and the 43mm f1.9.

    The 50mm f1.4 is very flare resistant - it will blow away probably any
    non-Pentax lens in this regard. However, the 43mm is, I think, possibly
    even a little better. This is something else I haven't tested by
    side-by-side comparison though, so it is just an impression (at this

    I think the colour rendition of my 43mm may be a _tiny_ bit cooler than with
    my 50mm f1.4. Both are attractive, and this is rather a subjective view.

    Both lenses sharpen as they are stopped down, and by f4 possibly, and f5.6
    pretty certainly, you couldn't separate them in terms of resolution. Both
    also do have some light fall-off into the corners when shot wide open - all
    fast 'normal' lenses do - and again with both it disappears on stopping
    down: I'd say it's gone by f2 or f 2 1/3 with the 50mm f1.4, and by around
    f2 1/2 with the 43mm. In neither lens would I say the fall-off was
    excessive (there's much more in the f1.2, and I don't find it particularly a
    problem there either.)

    I hope that is some help. It's not an easy choice and does depend on both
    what you shoot and your personal preference for how you render your
    subjects. I have both these lenses, but if I could have only one, even
    though the 43mm is perhaps the better lens for more of what _I_ shoot, it
    would be the 50mm f1.4 that I would choose. The 50mm f1.4 is more of an
    all-rounder, while the 43mm f1.9 is very good at what it does best.

    Bandicoot, Nov 5, 2006
  10. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest

    Surprised! :)

    Why do you think they call it "Bendtax"? ;-)

    ....they're all comedians. Sorry, had to get that one in there ;-).
    No, I'm just not a fan of posterization unless its done on purpose! LOL
    Actually, I forget who does/did the Sunday Morning Photographer column
    on photo.net/etc., but he loved the life-like color of the 7D and said
    so in one of his articles.

    My bad. I believ ethe Zeiss soom is a 16-80 not a 16-45.
    A (likely) guess? Knowledge? Desire? The 35mm f/2 if they hot the bokeh
    right, would make a fantastic normal lens for the Sony and its crop
    I didn't know that. Are you sure?

    I was merely pointing out that Leica R ownership
    I understand. Thanks.
    I'm almost envious (since I can't afford it anyways) ;-)
    Unfortunately my friendly Pentax dealer is in Colorado though eBay
    might be doable... eventually...
    thebokehking, Nov 5, 2006
  11. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest

    Some of the people I've photographed look more like Chuck Jones (old
    white male animator) ;-)

    Tony has given some excellent comments, can't wait for what you'll have
    to say too, hope you enjoyed the party :).
    thebokehking, Nov 5, 2006
  12. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest


    Thanks, Peter, and of course, Tony, too for both of your detailed
    excellent comments/opinions/experiences. I am now equally fully
    knowledgable/confused ;-). What I'll probably end up doing is start
    saving for a used 43 off of eBay or some such when/if my finances
    improve and shoot with it until I know how well I can get along with
    its positive points (3D bokeh and smooth transition of focus and great
    micro-contrast) and its negative points (not nearly as capable of
    selective focus effects as the 50/1.4, wider angle of view (could be a
    positive or a negative, depending on the situation) and not as useful
    in low light). If I don't like it and/or it doesn't suit my needs I can
    always put it up for sale again and try to answer that other great
    Shakespearean question -- ..."To Pentax 50/1.4 or not to Pentax 50/1.4
    (but to 50/1.7 instead), that is the question"... my apologies to
    Shakespeare and The Dead Poets Society ;-).

    Regards and, Again, thank you both from the bottom of the top of my
    bottom... and then some! ;-)
    thebokehking, Nov 5, 2006
  13. thebokehking

    Tony Polson Guest

    Just a thought ... why not spend a *very small* amount of money now on
    the 50mm f/1.7 A (the best manual focus option if you have or intend
    to buy Pentax AF or digital bodies) or M (even cheaper but still
    optically superb good) and then consider whether the 43mm Limited or
    50mm f/1.4 would be the better later addition? In the meantime, you
    will have an optically outstanding 50mm f/1.7 to use and enjoy ...

    .... just a thought!

    Another thought - be grateful that you don't own Nikon or Canon
    bodies, because you would be forced to choose between the mediocre
    Nikon and Canon 50mm lenses.


    Of course you could always get a Pentax SMC Takumar 50mm f/1.4 to fit
    the Canon via an adapter!

    Tony Polson, Nov 5, 2006
  14. thebokehking

    Mojtaba Guest

    It was done by Mike Johntson on luminous- landscape.com

    Mojtaba, Nov 5, 2006

  15. ""My favourites are the 20mm f/2.8, 24mm f/2.8, 35mm f/2, 50mm f/1.8,
    85mm f/1.8 and 180mm f/2.8 AF Nikkors. They are all superb lenses...""
    Tony Polson, Feb 3, 2001

    Polson: try to keep your stories straight and please post the cover you
    did for "Paris Match" back in the 70's.


    Stranger than fiction, Nov 5, 2006
  16. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest

    Thanks Tony. I already have an MZ-S and a ZX-5n. Time to save up for
    the AF lens I've always wanted, but a cheap MF 50/1.7 is something
    definitely to consider in the meantime...
    thebokehking, Nov 5, 2006
  17. thebokehking

    thebokehking Guest

    Right you are Mojtaba, thanks. But I believe its also on photo.net too
    if I'm not mistaken, at least it was in the past before (and after?) he
    stopped writing it.
    thebokehking, Nov 5, 2006
  18. Hi Tony!

    Have you compared the CZJ 35mm f/2.4 to the older 35mm f/2.8?
    If find the f/2.8 very sharp (sharper than), but not "monumental"
    looking like the Schneider Curtagon 35mm or the Pentax 35mm f/3.5.
    I haven't decided what to take yet, but if you see another guy shooting
    hopelessly outdated film equipment in Paris in mid-late November, it
    might be me!


    Chris Loffredo, Nov 5, 2006
  19. thebokehking

    Tony Polson Guest

    Tomorrow morning I am leaving for two assignments lasting a total of
    three weeks. It's rare for me to shoot 100% film but both assignments
    call for it, so I will be taking my Pentax 35mm and Rollei medium
    format gear. I will take a back-up digital (Sony DSC-R1) just in case
    I need it.

    I have been packing my equipment today and I am delighted to be taking
    the MX, MZ-3 and some of my favourite Pentax lenses ... 50mm f/1.7A,
    35-105mm f/3.5A, 70-210mm f/4A plus Carl Zeiss Jena 20mm f/2.8 and
    35mm f/2.4, and a 500mm f/8 mirror lens which I use so rarely that I
    am not sure why I still keep it :).

    I really like the Canon EOS 5D and give it a lot of use, but I am
    pleased to be leaving it and most of my Leica gear behind, although I
    am taking my favoured M3 and 3 Leica lenses (24mm, 35mm, 50mm) to
    shoot some black and white film in Paris just for pleasure. If I like
    the results I might make some black and white prints for Christmas
    presents to friends and family.

    By the time I get back I expect you to have bought a 50mm f/1.7.

    Don't disappoint me!

    Best regards,

    Tony Polson, Nov 5, 2006
  20. Interested to hear about the 35 - 105 lens. I've been considering a
    manual focus zoom in the area of 28/35 - 105/135 mm. Pentax M or A line,
    that is. I do have a Tamron 28 - 105 autofocus but that has been a
    disappointment. So, would You recommend that 35 - 105 or something else?
    Autofocus is not important, I currently use my KX more than MZ5n.
    Ahhh... Paris...

    Väinö Louekari
    Väinö Louekari, Nov 5, 2006
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