A weak lens...


QuestionableCarrot

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 18:06
Someone told me before buying the M 28 2.8 that it was Pentax's poorest piece of glass and that I should go for a 35mm instead.

I looked at a lot of my street photography pictures and 21 to 31 seemed to be the best length for me. So I bought a 28mm for around 35 quid.

After shooting with it extensively for three months I have to agree with my friend. Its quite poor only getting reasonably sharp at F5.6.

It does however suit black and white if that makes sense? For my eye anyway the tonality is much better.

My search for the perfect street lens continues.

A DA 21 might just be on the cards after all
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johnriley

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 18:14
Maybe a Ricoh GR? The 18.3mm lens could be just right for you and it's far less obtrusive than any of the DSLRs.

Just a thought, otherwise the 21mm seems a pretty sound choice.
Best regards, John

DrOrloff

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 18:28
The DA21 is pretty slow at f3.2 for street photography. I too would recommend the GR or perhaps, even better, the GRDIV, which is f1.9. It will be noisier but that doesn't really matter for street, often adds to the mood. The smaller sensor can work to your advantage with a greater depth of field too.
You can see some of my photos here if you are so inclined

QuestionableCarrot

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 18:40
Thanks guys the GR crops up quite a lot. I must check it out
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QuestionableCarrot

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 18:50
Does anyone have experience with the Q for this kinda thing?
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DrOrloff

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 19:23
Well the Q with the long promised and never forthcoming wide angle prime would have been good. The 01 lens is 47mm equivalent which certainly has a use but I often find it too long as a single street lens solution. The classic combination of wide and normal on the Q would have made for a very good street combo. The 01 on the larger sensor Q7 comes out at 35mm which is ideal for a single lens option, but I feel rather cheated by Pentax on the Q front so won't be investing in the Q7. There is always the zoom but I find it too big and a prime for grab shots works much better for me.
You can see some of my photos here if you are so inclined
Last Edited by DrOrloff on 20/02/2014 - 19:24

QuestionableCarrot

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 19:37
thats a great help - good to know someone else out there is shooting the streets

What lenses or setup do you use?
Learn how to live and you'll know how to die; learn how to die, and you'll know how to live.

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DrOrloff

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 19:50
I don't much but when I do then I find the best option is my Ricoh GRDII which I bought it as a tryout for a GR. I am still undecided as I would ideally like a 35mm equivalent. I want something that is suitable for street and is compact enough to take absolutely everywhere but will also give me top class landscapes. I also want an APS-C sized sensor as a minimum (although that probably is a little irrational since micro4/3rds is probably good enough) The Fuji X100 almost fits the bill but is too big. The Sony RX1R is beyond my budget. I read in some interview somewhere that Ricoh might bring out further GR variants so I am procrastinating as I think the GR is stellar.
You can see some of my photos here if you are so inclined

weinelm

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 20:17
+1 for the GR

And thats from someone whose favourite lens was the DA21.. well when just taking out a single prime anyway. However all that said I don't find the A version of the 28mm f2.8 too bad. Sure, it lacks a bit of contrast and flares a lot, but it's not a terrible lens. Is the A different to the M version maybe?
Panasonic GX80, Pentax MX, Mamiya 6. My Flickr

weinelm

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 20:23
DrOrloff wrote:
I am still undecided as I would ideally like a 35mm equivalent.

If you're happy with 10MP the GR has a nice 35mm equ crop mode, which still gives around the same sensor area as m4/3. There's also a 47mm crop, but that might be pushing it a bit far...

DrOrloff wrote:
I read in some interview somewhere that Ricoh might bring out further GR variants so I am procrastinating as I think the GR is stellar.

I'd certainly buy a "normal" focal length GR. Imagine the love child of an FA43 and a GR
Panasonic GX80, Pentax MX, Mamiya 6. My Flickr

Jonathan-Mac

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 21:06
Which version of the M do you have? I had a version 1 (the more common) and agree entirely. It's the poorest Pentax lens I've used. I now have a version 2, which has the same optics as the later A series model, and it's far superior. On film it has some barrel distortion but on digital much less.

Having said that, I'm likely to sell it quite soon because I now have an M 35mm f/2, which will replace the 28mm as my main wide lens for film, and serves as a very nice fast standard prime for digital. I still have the K 28mm f/3.5 and Vivitar 28mm f/2 to choose between for 28mm
Pentax hybrid user - Digital K3, film 645 and 35mm SLR and Pentax (&other) lenses adapted to Fuji X and Panasonic L digital
Fan of DA limited and old manual lenses
Last Edited by Jonathan-Mac on 20/02/2014 - 21:08

JonSchick

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 21:15
Alistair if you like the focal length, I think you might want to check out the f3.5 versions of the lens - which are quite a step up in image quality. I also have the SMC 35/2M and that's great, but the SMC 35/2.8 is pretty decent too and cheaper when you can find it (just slightly less interesting).
Jon

Some occasional random stuff at The Photographers Block: link

giofi

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 21:23
JonSchick wrote:
Alistair if you like the focal length, I think you might want to check out the f3.5 versions of the lens - which are quite a step up in image quality. I also have the SMC 35/2M and that's great, but the SMC 35/2.8 is pretty decent too and cheaper when you can find it (just slightly less interesting).

+1 for the 28 3.5. This is agreat lens, and very reasonably priced.
Giorgio

Pentax Photo Gallery

McGregNi

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 21:27
weinelm wrote:
.... However all that said I don't find the A version of the 28mm f2.8 too bad. Sure, it lacks a bit of contrast and flares a lot, but it's not a terrible lens. Is the A different to the M version maybe?

It sound to me like the same lens - the 'a' presumably refers to it having the a setting on the aperture ring. As I understand it the original 'K' lenses did not have this, then the 'M' series came along with it.

I agree the 'M' (or a) 28 f2.8 is excellent. Davidstorm has often reported that the f3.5 version is better, but I believe he still finds the f2.8 very good, although like me maybe he doesn't shoot often wide open? I've never found sharpness an issue - the only issue of note I've seen is a fair bit of CA / PF in backlighting, but I guess this is in common with many lenses of the era.

Here's one with mine at f3.5 ...







And a couple at f5.6 .....









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Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver
Last Edited by McGregNi on 20/02/2014 - 21:29

QuestionableCarrot

Link Posted 20/02/2014 - 22:32
Thank you all for commenting- just in through the door...

Im not sure what lens I have whether its 1 or 2. Is there something on it to indicate so? I dont have it to hand.
Dont get me wrong - its sharper than the kit lens but when I walk around with the K-5 and M 50 1.7 combo, its just head and shoulders above everything else as you all know.
David Storm has told me on numerous occasions about the 3.5 and expect I will probably buy that. I just wish there was a fast Da lens in and around that aperture. Its not that money is a problem for the DA 21 its just not the right length for me

Interesting times ahead on the street
Learn how to live and you'll know how to die; learn how to die, and you'll know how to live.

Check out ones photographs on Flickr!

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