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Which Lens? Old or New?


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Which Lens? Old or New?

5 Dec 2016 10:20AM   Views : 787 Unique : 541

I was looking through one of my older hard drives and found all my Pentax *istDS and K10D images backed up there, plus some projects I did way back then. One interesting thing was an impromptu lens comparison test, done long before I tested lenses more scientifically, but nonetheless interesting. I thought I'd share the comparison, which shows shots wide open and closed down to f/8 for several Pentax lenses. These are the SMC Pentax-A 24-50mm f/4, SMC Pentax-A 35-70mm f/4, SMC Pentax-A 50mm f/2, SMC Pentax-DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 (First version) and SMC Pentax-FA 24-90mm f/3.5-4.5.

First, let's see the images at open aperture:
24-50mm at f/4

35-70mm at f/4

50mm at f/2

18-55mm at f/4

24-90mm at f/4

Then all stopped down to f/8:

24-50mm at f/8

35-70mm at f/8

50mm at f/8

18-55mm at f/8

24-90mm at f/8

It's clear that there are differences, particularly wide open, although for many users they might be seen as subtle and not significant in a small print or on screen. The older lenses have done very well against the newer one, surpassing it really, and also have proved very consistent in their quality.

Which one would we buy? Your choice, but I might be tempted by that 24-90mm, which always had a good reputation and could have a new lease of life as a useful range on the new K-1. What a pity I sold mine many years ago.

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