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Thread: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

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    How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    I have the FA 75/2.8 and was thinking of using this Zoom*lens and selling my 75. I use the 75 as my walk around lens but like to not switch lenses from the 75 to either the 120 or 150 I also have. Thank you. Also, I know its heavier but I will be using it outdoors mainly so I can shoot with 1/250 and reduce chance of blurring . Thanks

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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    Quote Originally Posted by rollsman44 View Post
    I have the FA 75/2.8 and was thinking of using this Zoom*lens and selling my 75. I use the 75 as my walk around lens but like to not switch lenses from the 75 to either the 120 or 150 I also have. Thank you. Also, I know its heavier but I will be using it outdoors mainly so I can shoot with 1/250 and reduce chance of blurring . Thanks
    I've been curious about this lens, too. I have a gap between 55mm and 120mm that I'd like to fill, and this seems like a good fit, but I've read mixed reviews on it. I wish they'd release a new one built to the 28-45mm standards, but then again, I don't know if I'd want to drop 4k on it!

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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    The lens is great at the short end but not so at the long end. Heavy and with a very bulky hood, but well constructed, all metal design.
    Too much to list, let's just say I have a bad case of GAS.........

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    Senior Member Joe Colson's Avatar
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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    I loved that lens over its entire focal length range. I've sold my 645Z kit, including all the lenses, but thought the 45-85mm was one of the best performers of the group. I made sure that the one I bought was like-new ("gently used") and had no mechanical or cosmetic flaws. This gallery on my website has several photos from May 2015 that were taken with that lens. Look at the EXIF for individual photos using the "i" icon in the lower left of the screen. Hope this helps.

    Joe
    _________________________________
    Joe Colson Photography

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    Senior Member Ed Hurst's Avatar
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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    In my experience, the lens is pretty good from around 45 to 65 (though not stellar); beyond that it's moderately good only.

    For my money, if you want to make the most of the Z, I would go for some primes instead. Or wait for the new zoom (whenever that comes out!).

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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    Thank you. I have primes 35, 75 120 and 150. I like these but was trying to get more convenience with a zoom. Thank you

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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    Not too much I can add that hasn't been said already in this thread. In my original post a number of years ago of Pentax 645 lens tests and also since then, I've tested numerous samples of this lens and consistantcy in performance between samples is fairly close. Whereas the short end of the zoom is exceptionally good and can be used at apertures wider than f8, the long end benifits from stopping down considerably more.

    I'd say excellent samples of the zoom at 85mm are mealy good-very good but performance appears to fall off somewhat beyond 65mm as pointed out.

    Again as noted by others, the zoom is substantially bigger and heavier than the single focal lenses it its general range. No doubt the new zoom when released will excel much like the current 28-45mm zoom but at what expense and size.

    With regards to Joe's post above in viewing his images taken with this lens....not sure what specific info it will yield as all of Joe's photos taken with any lens (or camera) including those taken thru coke bottles, are always pretty spectacular.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Member David Duffin's Avatar
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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    Like Joe, I have no quarrel with the sharpness of the 45-85mm throughout its focal range. If I were to sell my 645 lenses this is the last I'd let go. It's indispensable.

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    Super Duper
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    Re: How is the Image quality SMC Pentax-FA 645 45-85mm F4.5

    Quote Originally Posted by David Duffin View Post
    Like Joe, I have no quarrel with the sharpness of the 45-85mm throughout its focal range. If I were to sell my 645 lenses this is the last I'd let go. It's indispensable.
    Aside from some minor sample variation where many of these legacy lenses do suffer from when used on a digital body, it also depends what ones intent on output is, especially say on thr longer end of this zoom. Mine for most purposes were very substantial size large format prints, which most definitely acentuated any reduction of flaws in performance.

    I forgot to mention that one has to choose what focal length to pick in the zoom range for AF fine tuning this lens on a 645 D or Z body. This greatly helped if AF fine tuning was performed at 85mm and allow the depth of field at wider forcal lengths cover up any focusing descrepancies. This too might account for differences seen by different users of this lens.

    Dave (D&A).

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