Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Pentax 70 2.4 DA - a few samples

I've had this lens for a few days, mounted on Pentax k10d. The first impression was great, a very small and light, but very well built lens (metal). Filter size is just 49 mm, its size is 26x63 mm and it weights only 130 g (even lighter than Canon EF 50 1.8 which weighs 5 g more and is completely made out of plastic). It has also an integrated lens hood (or it it a screw on design, I'm not sure but it was already on a brand new lens). A joy to have for a walkaround lens, I personally don't like big, bulky, heavy equipment.

But when it comes to the image quality, all I can say is, that it's substandard for a fixed focal lenght. It's soft up to f3.5, so I've shot with it mostly on f4 (I usually never go above that, I mostly shoot in the f1.8-f2.8 with fast lenses). So I don't really see the point in buying a fast lens, which is not only soft wide open, but all the way up to (including) f3.5. Besides that it has the noisiest AF motor I've ever hear, pretty annoying. I didn't test it thoroughly, so I can't say much about colours, contrast and bokeh, although my first impression was that they were good.

And at the end we come to the price. It costs over 500 euros in Slovenia, what is in my opinion way too much for the image quality and AF it offers.

Lets get to the photos. All of the colour photos are unprocessed, I just added a bit of USM after resizing. The second and third photo also show low dynamic range of the Pentax k10d. All of the shots were taken in cloudy weather, so there were no harsh shadows/contrast transitions, so therefore blown out parts of the photo shouldn't occur. I never had such experiences with any of Canon (tested the whole lineup) or Nikon (I've mostly shot with D70) Cameras. It's a shame, because k10d is otherwise a nice camera, with a very competitive price (good value). Unfortunately I haven't had luck with the weather, so I had to use ISO 250-800 and AS too (but from what I've seen AS doesn't affect sharpness (much)).

f4, 1/60, ISO 400, AS on

f4, 1/60, ISO 250, AS on

f2.4, 1/100, ISO 800, AS on

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