How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?

Started Apr 3, 2012 | Discussions
Tom__Brown
Senior MemberPosts: 1,268
Like?
How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
Apr 3, 2012

I love the DA40L technically, but it's a useless lens. I'll just pull it out to test with, every time I get another camera body. lol!

I've heard others here lament the focal length. Why is it so useless? I've got quite a few some shots with a DA16-45 that were taken at 45mm. 45mm isn't so far from 40.

Strange then the 40L feels like such a fish out of water in DX format. I'm sure it would be one of my favorite focal lengths if I was shooting full frame.

-- hide signature --

-- Tom

ozdean
Forum ProPosts: 19,677Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Tom__Brown, Apr 3, 2012

I reckon its the perfect prime for what the K01 was designed for; a touch longer than normal.
--
Regards Dean - Capturing Creation
N.B. All my Images are Protected by Copyright

 ozdean's gear list:ozdean's gear list
Pentax MX-1 Pentax smc DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Pentax smc DA* 60-250mm F4.0 ED (IF) SDM Pentax smc DA 70mm F2.4 AL Limited Pentax smc D-FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR +7 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
John Cal
Regular MemberPosts: 307Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to ozdean, Apr 3, 2012

It's a great lens for many things. This is the lens that made me buy into Pentax coming from Canon and Nikon.

 John Cal's gear list:John Cal's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS1 Pentax K10D Pentax K-7 Pentax Q Pentax K-01 +14 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
timo
Veteran MemberPosts: 4,298
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Tom__Brown, Apr 3, 2012

I have one, and it works well.

I would feel better about it if there were a modern 28mm. If you have a 40, then 35mm seems a bit redundant and vice versa. And yet the 21mm is too far away.

More and more I find myself packing the DA21, the M28/3.5 and the FA50/1.7. A bit ironic, having spent good money on the 40 and the cheapo DA35.
--
tim
http://www.pbase.com/timotheus

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Roland Karlsson
Forum ProPosts: 19,539Gear list
Like?
The fish in the water barrel
In reply to Tom__Brown, Apr 3, 2012

This question reminds me of the fish in the water barrel riddle.

The riddle is something like this.

If you have a barrel full of water and put something in, e.g. a stone then some water from the barrel will spill over on the ground/floor.

The riddle is then - why does this not happen if you put a fish in the barrel?

Hard one - after some time some usually start to come up with explanations. Maybe the slime on the fish changes surface tension? Maybe the fish swallows the water? Maybe its magic?

But the answer is more simple than that. The riddle is false. There are no such effect.

And --- back to the 40 mm lens. You asked why it is not a good focal length. Yes?

 Roland Karlsson's gear list:Roland Karlsson's gear list
Canon PowerShot G10 Pentax K-5 Pentax smc DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Pentax smc FA 50mm F1.4 Pentax smc DA 21mm F3.2 AL Limited +6 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Ishpuini
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,018Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Tom__Brown, Apr 3, 2012

It comes down to personal preferences really.

I must agree that I never found 40mm an ideal focal length. But I never really liked 35mm on APS-C either. I always wanted slightly wider, hence the FA31 is better for me.

However, since I started increasingly shooting in the square format my preferences changed. Now I prefer the DA21/3.2 for a slightly wider standard, and my FA43 (close to 40mm) has become my mild tele of choice.

Wim

-- hide signature --

Belgium, GMT+1

 Ishpuini's gear list:Ishpuini's gear list
Pentax K-5 Pentax Q Pentax K-3 Pentax smc DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Pentax smc DA* 16-50mm F2.8 ED AL (IF) SDM +14 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
sterretje
Contributing MemberPosts: 660Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Tom__Brown, Apr 3, 2012

Tom_ Brown wrote:

... Why is it so useless?

Simply because it's not your focal length. And neither mine. And for others, it's a perfect focal length.

-- hide signature --

WimS

 sterretje's gear list:sterretje's gear list
Pentax K100D Pentax K10D Pentax K-5
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Roland Karlsson
Forum ProPosts: 19,539Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to sterretje, Apr 3, 2012

sterretje wrote:

Simply because it's not your focal length. And neither mine. And for others, it's a perfect focal length.

OK - is it bad on both FF and APS-C?

In that case would 60 mm be bad on FF and 28 mm bad on APS-C. Is that so?

 Roland Karlsson's gear list:Roland Karlsson's gear list
Canon PowerShot G10 Pentax K-5 Pentax smc DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Pentax smc FA 50mm F1.4 Pentax smc DA 21mm F3.2 AL Limited +6 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
LWW
LWW
Regular MemberPosts: 406Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Roland Karlsson, Apr 3, 2012

Stop moaning, get over it, chuck it in the bin, sell it. If you are not up to getting the most from it - your problem

 LWW's gear list:LWW's gear list
Canon PowerShot G10 Pentax *ist D Pentax K10D Pentax K20D Canon EOS 7D +28 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Roland Karlsson
Forum ProPosts: 19,539Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to LWW, Apr 3, 2012

LWW wrote:

Stop moaning, get over it, chuck it in the bin, sell it. If you are not up to getting the most from it - your problem

Hmmmm .. evidently I was not clear enough.

I have no problems with 40 mm lens - neither on FF nor on APS-C.

I was just asking the guy that had. If it was the focal length or the FOV he did not like.

 Roland Karlsson's gear list:Roland Karlsson's gear list
Canon PowerShot G10 Pentax K-5 Pentax smc DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Pentax smc FA 50mm F1.4 Pentax smc DA 21mm F3.2 AL Limited +6 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
snake_b
Senior MemberPosts: 4,680
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Ishpuini, Apr 3, 2012

The DA21 is nice, but too slow, really.

The X100 made it especially obvious that the DA21 is too slow, especially for the price that is being commanded for it.

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
LWW
LWW
Regular MemberPosts: 406Gear list
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Roland Karlsson, Apr 3, 2012

Apologies Roland,

Did not intend to direct my reply to you, more the original post. I can not understand how the focal length really is of any consequence once you are the owner. Just move the feet a bit. My DA40, hardly ever is used for a single frame, but as a optic for a vertical (portrait) stitched panorama - superb. both for image quality and perspective.
Just a matter of fit to purpose.

 LWW's gear list:LWW's gear list
Canon PowerShot G10 Pentax *ist D Pentax K10D Pentax K20D Canon EOS 7D +28 more
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
13thBagel
Contributing MemberPosts: 878Gear list
Like?
Huh??
In reply to snake_b, Apr 3, 2012

snake_b wrote:

The DA21 is nice, but too slow, really.

The X100 made it especially obvious that the DA21 is too slow, especially for the price that is being commanded for it.

You can compare a complex part to a system and expect to make a categorical judgment that's credible...? Kinda like comparing a MINI headlight to a Volkwagen...? OK, they're German products, but what's your point?

Help me understand... M

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
snake_b
Senior MemberPosts: 4,680
Like?
Re: Huh??
In reply to 13thBagel, Apr 3, 2012

Ok. The DA21 is a slow lens.

13thBagel wrote:

snake_b wrote:

The DA21 is nice, but too slow, really.

The X100 made it especially obvious that the DA21 is too slow, especially for the price that is being commanded for it.

You can compare a complex part to a system and expect to make a categorical judgment that's credible...? Kinda like comparing a MINI headlight to a Volkwagen...? OK, they're German products, but what's your point?

Help me understand... M

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Paphios
Regular MemberPosts: 394
Like?
Re: How come 40mm is such an irrelevant focal length?
In reply to Tom__Brown, Apr 3, 2012

For years in film photography a MicroNikkor 55mm was my main prime lens rather than the usual 50. For me the 40mm focal length on APS-C seems pretty natural

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Matthew Miller
Senior MemberPosts: 1,248Gear list
Like?
Re: Huh??
In reply to 13thBagel, Apr 3, 2012

13thBagel wrote:

snake_b wrote:

The DA21 is nice, but too slow, really.

The X100 made it especially obvious that the DA21 is too slow, especially for the price that is being commanded for it.

You can compare a complex part to a system and expect to make a categorical judgment that's credible...? Kinda like comparing a MINI headlight to a Volkwagen...? OK, they're German products, but what's your point?

The X100 has a 23mm f/2 lens.

-- hide signature --

Matthew Miller « http://mattdm.org/ »

 Matthew Miller's gear list:Matthew Miller's gear list
Pentax K-5 II Pentax smc DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Pentax smc DA 40mm F2.8 Limited Pentax smc DA 70mm F2.4 AL Limited
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Matthew Miller
Senior MemberPosts: 1,248Gear list
Like?
I like it.
In reply to Roland Karlsson, Apr 3, 2012

Roland Karlsson wrote:

But the answer is more simple than that. The riddle is false. There are no such effect.

Exactly. For me, it's very convenient; it's within the range of

"normal", but slightly narrow, tending to make composition more focused. And that same extra length makes it a bit nicer for portraits than a wider normal would be. Altogether, this means that it stays on my camera most of the time.

-- hide signature --

Matthew Miller « http://mattdm.org/ »

 Matthew Miller's gear list:Matthew Miller's gear list
Pentax K-5 II Pentax smc DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Pentax smc DA 40mm F2.8 Limited Pentax smc DA 70mm F2.4 AL Limited
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
mervis50
Regular MemberPosts: 209
Like?
Try it. You'll like it.
In reply to Tom__Brown, Apr 3, 2012

You're asking a question based on an opinion which is based on a fallacy. Yes, it's unusual compared to what we think is standard, but in and of itself, it's just another focal length. Just because it's not widely popular doesn't make it wrong or 'irrelevant.

It's really a marvelous piece of glass - a pleasant surprise. And only $150 as part of the K-01 kit. I'm finding it to be a very nice street lens. Brings you in a little closer when necessary; gives more focal separation between subject and background than a standard; mild foreshortening for portraits.

Don't diss this lens!
--
Cheers from Vancouver, Canada

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Ari Aikomus
Veteran MemberPosts: 5,768
Like?
Yep, and 55mm Takumar...
In reply to Paphios, Apr 3, 2012

Paphios wrote:

For years in film photography a MicroNikkor 55mm was my main prime lens rather than the usual 50. For me the 40mm focal length on APS-C seems pretty natural

I agree. 55-60mm is quite nice FF (fullframe) focal lenght range .

I use my old m42 Takumar 55/1.8 all the time with FF Canon 5D:

cheers,

Ari

-- hide signature --

  • Ari Aikomus -

'Why should I feel lonely ? is not our planet in the Milky way?'

Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Photonom
Regular MemberPosts: 133Gear list
Like?
Ari Question
In reply to Ari Aikomus, Apr 3, 2012

Ari Aikomus wrote:

Paphios wrote:

For years in film photography a MicroNikkor 55mm was my main prime lens rather than the usual 50. For me the 40mm focal length on APS-C seems pretty natural

I agree. 55-60mm is quite nice FF (fullframe) focal lenght range .

I use my old m42 Takumar 55/1.8 all the time with FF Canon 5D:

Ari,

Do you have any problem with the mirror of the Canon 5d hitting the back of this lens or any other M42's you may have.

Thanks, Robert

-- hide signature --

  • Ari Aikomus -

'Why should I feel lonely ? is not our planet in the Milky way?'

 Photonom's gear list:Photonom's gear list
Pentax K110D Pentax K20D Pentax smc DA* 200mm F2.8 ED (IF) SDM
Reply   Reply with quote   Complain
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads