K-01: Samyang 85mm f/1.4 or Tamron Adaptall-2 90mm f/2.5?

Started Feb 12, 2013 | Discussions thread
EArenz Contributing Member • Posts: 608
Re: K-01: Samyang 85mm f/1.4 or Tamron Adaptall-2 90mm f/2.5?

I've got the Tamron. Actually I've got 2 because one developed the strange "spot" at certain appertures. c.f. UnresponsiveCanvas . It's a very good optical formula.

I've had a number of the various incarnations of the Tamron SP 90mm Macro AD-2 (at least 7 copies).  So far none have had the purple spot?  If I may hazard a guess, was it the first generation (model 52B with 49mm filter size)?  If so, the front element is right at the end of the lens and a lens hood is advised.  On the next generation (model 52BB, 55mm filter size), the front element was recessed a bit more.  I still use a lens hood.  The other model I have is the 72B which is also 55mm filter size, goes to 1:1 and because of the larger body needed to allow it to reach 1:1, the front lens element is deeply recessed.  It also comes with a lens hood for extra measure.

I like it, and because I can still focus manually I take it to concerts where its speed at just the right focal length (for APS-C) works well. Someone questioned the coatings on a lens as old as this but I don't see any flare spots from stage lights.

No flare problems here either.

It was a great portrait lens for film, but you have to stand back a bit too far for my liking to use it on APS-C and depending on the age of your grandchildren and the setting for pictures, painstaking focus setting may not be the ideal.

As I understand it this lens was designed with a dual purpose:  to be a bit soft at f2.5/2.8 in the manner that works well for portraits.  Many people love this characteristic and 90mm was a great FF portrait FL.  Stop down from f2.8 and it becomes very sharp quickly.  So a dual purpose lens.  Not much macro is shot at f2.5/2.8.  See the Adaptall-2 link at the bottom of the post for resolution charts and commentary.

The Tamron can be found fairly cheaply, but expect it to have the wrong mount on it, you may have to buy a lens you don't want to get a PKA mount (or a PK - but get the A if you can), and then sell the wrong lens/mount combo.

These mounts used to go for more money but recently have seen them on eBay now and then in the $50 dollar range.  Having the P/KA mount allows you to also use all the other ADII lenses.  The 90mm SP is a very good lens.  Don't lets someone who had a bad or damaged copy put you off.  There are few lenses in this focal range that are of 90mm SP quality for anywhere near the cost. Interesting link to info on many Adaptall -2 lenses including the 90mm SP:

Adaptall-2 lenses

Tamron 90mm SP


 EArenz's gear list:EArenz's gear list
Pentax K-01 Pentax K-5 II Pentax smc DA 55-300mm F4.0-5.8 ED Pentax smc DA 18-135mm F3.5-5.6ED AL [IF] DC WR Pentax smc DA 40mm F2.8 XS Lens +17 more
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