Pentax smc DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited


jon.dc

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 20:19
Does anyone have any experience on the Pentax smc DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited - Is it worth 216 new?

GlynM

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 20:51
I have one of these. It was on my must-have list as a pancake lens and at 216 certainly sounds very attractive.

However I hardly ever use mine. I prefer to use the FA50 or DA35 limited. The lens cap on the DA40 is a small screw-on disc, the hood is also screw on and these are a pain to remove quickly and I worry about loosing them. As a limited it is definitely very well made and performs well but I think a pancake is a bit of a gimmick. The focus ring is very, very, narrow. If I was starting afresh now I think I would hanker after a 43mm limited instead.

Glyn

Anvh

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 20:53
I've one, it's a very small lens some say too small but it's still quite a good lens to handle if you don't have very fat fingers.

Wide open it's average but close down a stop it's a sharp lens and it stay very constant a cross the frame so no drop off around the edges.
The AF is lighting fast, it's the fasted lens that I have. Focusing from one end to the other takes less then a second.

When buying the lens I had also the option to buy the DA35mm but ended up with the DA40 since it preforms just a bit better image wise, it was cheaper and I have the 100mm macro so the macro of the DA35 was not a real extra for me.
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ

Anvh

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 20:56
Glyn I simply use the hood only as protection when going into my bag it seems to offer more then enough protection (small hole and nothing in the bag that fits through it)

When using a filter I simply put it in the Leather bag, that offers also enough protection in my case.
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ
Last Edited by Anvh on 06/07/2009 - 20:56

GlynM

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 21:32
Stefan - I think the DA35 limited is a far superior lens. It has a beautiful sliding, integral, hood and a lovely push-on metal lens cap. It also has the space for a set of DOF markings that I expect to find on a quality lens. I've not got one but I believe the 43mm limited to be even better


When about with the camera I like to put the lens cap back on between shots and this a pain with the DA40. As an aside why do they print the Pentax name on the inside of the lens cap or is this just a quirk of my DA40?

Glyn

Anvh

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 21:41
Have you compared the IQ side by side Glyn, I never really could except those taken by others. I believe that the bokeh of the DA40 was better then the DA35 with in the normal focus range and that's one of the reasons I went of the DA40. Also the sharpness across the frame was very constant with the DA40 were with the DA35 you have quite a drop off near the edges.

The DA35 does have a better design like you said but is also more expensive... it's just what you need and want really.

The FA limiteds are all better lenses then the DA limiteds so no question about that although they are more expensive though.
The DA*55 does preform better then the FA43 though but is ofcourse quite a bit longer.

I never understood that either Glyn about the pentax marking but oh well, it's a nice small lens and it is perfect to make the canikons jealous for the size
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ
Last Edited by Anvh on 06/07/2009 - 21:42

GlynM

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 22:05
I have to admit that I have not done a detailed performance comparison between the two lenses. I had given up using the DA40 (bought in early 2006 when it cost 260UKP) long before the 35 limited was available. As a macro I knew that the 35's characteristics would be different but I got it, in August 2008, to create a similar frame coverage as a standard 50mm on a 35mm, ff, camera. Being a macro was a bonus and I've been very pleased with it. Its one of my few favourite, 3 or 4, lenses that get used often.

Glyn

Anvh

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 22:14
I used the DA40 a lot indoors, with portrait and in the studio with in combination with the DFA100 I had a nice duo to cover that but now that I've the DA*50-135 they both get hardly used and the DA40 is not that much sharper then the DA*50-135 at 50mm so don't really have a reason to use it except the wider angle.

The DFA100 is a macro lens and quite a bit sharper then the DA* so when I can I still carry that one with me.
Quite strange that I only need those a lens in that range to be happy, some have a lens coverage from 10mm to 600mm but never needed that, even shot wild birds with the DFA100

Why don't you offer your DA40 to Jon since you hardly use it?
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ

GlynM

Link Posted 06/07/2009 - 22:34
I don't know if its just me or an attribute of the British race but I've always liked to collect things and I think a Pentax fit lens collection must include a pancake lens

I only regularly use around 10% of my lens collection. Although I have to admit I have been considering selling one of my 4 mirror lenses, probably the Tamron 350mm, and have recently offered to donate one of my 4 camera bodies (k100D), with a pair of kit lenses to my father to get him started

Glyn

rparmar

Link Posted 07/07/2009 - 02:49
As someone who enjoys manual focusing I steer clear of the pancakes. I coughed up the money for the FA43 over the DA40 and the FA77 over the DA70 because the extra aperture matters. In fact I got both at a serious discount. I think it is worth saving for the very best, though the FA31 has so far eluded me, and at the new prices might for some time.

I am not necessarily a "collector" though I do have more lenses than I need. That came about as a byproduct of not knowing what I liked. I will soon rectify the situation with a purge.
Listen to my albums free on BandCamp. Or visit my main website for links to photography, etc.

George Lazarette

Link Posted 07/07/2009 - 20:46
40mm is a useless focal length on digital. A 24mm pancake would make much more sense.

G
Keywords: Charming, polite, and generally agreeable.

mikew

Link Posted 07/07/2009 - 22:29
George a trifle harsh surely? It's 60mm equivalent on film which isn't so far from 50mm which was considered standard although I always felt 35mm was a better standard/useful lens than 50. So while not agreeing it's useless I'd agree that a 24 is a better length so there's the 21 ltd to consider!

Mike
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You can see some of my shots at my Flickr account.

Anvh

Link Posted 07/07/2009 - 23:59
Don't you think that focal length is quite personal and also how can you agree that 24mm is better then 40mm, you don't even know where he wants to use it for
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ

mikew

Link Posted 08/07/2009 - 07:10
Stefan. I was merely relaying my experience that as a general purpose lens on film the 35mm length was better than 50 which I (and many others) found to be too narrow.

Have I been told what he wants to use it for? No.

I don't understand your problem with what I posted.

Mike
---------------------------------------------------

You can see some of my shots at my Flickr account.

Anvh

Link Posted 08/07/2009 - 11:34
Wasn't aimed at you Mike, sorry for that. I quite understand your reasona and you worded it right. George was quite blunt by merely saying that 40mm is useless and that 24mm makes more sense and it was a reaction on that.
Really sorry for that Mike.
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ
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