Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

Started Aug 28, 2006 | Discussions
ljv Regular Member • Posts: 383
Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

I can buy both lenses, both MF for my D's', what would be the better choise or must i buy both.

I already have a Sigma 50/200 and the Pentax 80/320 but want to buy some good glass from the older day's.

ljv

brandrx Forum Pro • Posts: 28,337
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

I would opt for the Pentax SMC A 70-210mm f4 if it were me.

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Ron ~ Retired

Don Allison Veteran Member • Posts: 6,163
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

The A 70/210. No question about it. If you check some past links, you will see that this is one very sharp lens notwithstanding the fact that it is an older zoom.
--

'Nothing could-be-finah-than-to-be-in-Carolina-in-the-morninnnnnn...'

BudH Contributing Member • Posts: 543
+1 on the A 70-210/f4 {nt}
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Bud - CP5700, PZ5KAF, GX-IS, EF500 Super, various pieces of Pentax glass.

OP ljv Regular Member • Posts: 383
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

Don Allison wrote:

The A 70/210. No question about it. If you check some past links,
you will see that this is one very sharp lens notwithstanding the
fact that it is an older zoom.
--

'Nothing could-be-finah-than-to-be-in-Carolina-in-the-morninnnnnn...'

But what about the saying that a prime lens has more sharpness?

ahilgaz Regular Member • Posts: 333
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

ljv wrote:

But what about the saying that a prime lens has more sharpness?

70-210 is almost as sharp
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Ahmet
*ist-anbul +2GMT

Caat Senior Member • Posts: 2,229
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

ahilgaz wrote:

ljv wrote:

But what about the saying that a prime lens has more sharpness?

70-210 is almost as sharp
--
Ahmet
*ist-anbul +2GMT

And has a tiny bit longer reach, is a zoom, has a 'macro' mode and can be used in all modes.

J North Regular Member • Posts: 310
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

I have the 70-210 but not the 200. I like mine. It was the third lens I bought (the summer it was released). Some people's 70-210 slide too easily for their liking. I guess I got lucky with mine. It barely has any creep at all, and I actually kinda like that slide to zoom instead of twist to zoom. I've always been happy with its capturing ability. If you take the zoom just make sure you can check out the zooming on the lens to see if it is something that you are comfortable with.

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What if the Hoky-Poky really was what it's all about?

alex wetmore Senior Member • Posts: 1,394
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

ahilgaz wrote:

ljv wrote:

But what about the saying that a prime lens has more sharpness?

70-210 is almost as sharp

My A 70-210/4 is sharper than the M 200/4. Only get the M if you want compact size.

You can find my tests at http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/lens-tests/200mm/

I compared my M 200/4, A 70-210/4 and Sigma EX 70-200/2.8 with and without teleconverters. This photo shows what I tested:

alex

Anastigmat Forum Pro • Posts: 12,677
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

ljv wrote:

I can buy both lenses, both MF for my D's', what would be the
better choise or must i buy both.
I already have a Sigma 50/200 and the Pentax 80/320 but want to buy
some good glass from the older day's.

ljv

Since you already have the Sigma 50-200 and the Pentax 80-320, spent your money on something else, instead of another lens in the same focal length range. The Sigma APO Tele Macro 70-300 f4-5.6 zoom is also a good choice in this range.

brandrx Forum Pro • Posts: 28,337
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

Anastigmat wrote:

ljv wrote:

I can buy both lenses, both MF for my D's', what would be the
better choise or must i buy both.
I already have a Sigma 50/200 and the Pentax 80/320 but want to buy
some good glass from the older day's.

ljv

Since you already have the Sigma 50-200 and the Pentax 80-320,
spent your money on something else, instead of another lens in the
same focal length range. The Sigma APO Tele Macro 70-300 f4-5.6
zoom is also a good choice in this range.

Read above: He said, "want to buy some good glass from the older day's."

Both of his choices meet that criteria.

Cheers.

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Ron ~ Retired

volosong Veteran Member • Posts: 4,318
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

Alex,

You spent quite a bit of time and a whole lot of work taking your images with various lens combinations and aperture settings. It would be very difficult to download all the full-res images, keep them organized, and compare them side-by-side.

Do you have a short write-up on your conclusions? Your impressions and thoughts on your test results?

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Steven
GMT -8

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Pentax K-1 Pentax FA 28-105mm F3.5-5.6
T e o Regular Member • Posts: 134
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

Hi Alex.

I'd be very glad if you do this, too.

Thanks
--

hugs,
Rafael Garcia

alex wetmore Senior Member • Posts: 1,394
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

volosong wrote:

You spent quite a bit of time and a whole lot of work taking your
images with various lens combinations and aperture settings. It
would be very difficult to download all the full-res images, keep
them organized, and compare them side-by-side.

Do you have a short write-up on your conclusions? Your impressions
and thoughts on your test results?

I didn't upload full resolution images, just crops from full resolution images in both the center and corners. You can easily pick two from lenses that you are comparing and make your own decision.

For instance if you care about wide open performance without a TC compare these three images:

http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/lens-tests/200mm/center/Pentax-M-200-4@4.jpg

http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/lens-tests/200mm/center/Pentax-A-70-210-4@4,210.jpg

http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/lens-tests/200mm/center/Sigma-EX-70-200@2.8,200.jpg

If you want f8 then compare these three:

http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/lens-tests/200mm/corner/Pentax-M-200-4@8.jpg

http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/lens-tests/200mm/corner/Pentax-A-70-210-4@8,210.jpg

http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/lens-tests/200mm/corner/Sigma-EX-70-200@8,200.jpg

I'd rather let others draw their own conclusions (including "Alex isn't good at focussing" if that is the right conclusion) instead of foisting my conclusions upon you. A newspaper test like this only tells us a little bit about the lenses (resolution at a fairly close focus range).

This is the result of an hour of work or so. It turns out that it is very easy to mount a lens on a camera pointed at some newspaper and adjust the f-stop. I converted the images using PSE, then wrote a script to make the crops and rename them.

alex

Reps Contributing Member • Posts: 951
Short: Pentax (n/t)

Best as always, JR

T e o Regular Member • Posts: 134
Re: Short: Pentax (n/t)

Ok,

My conclusions are:
The sigma is better in all the tests.

The SMC 70-210 is better than the SMC 200 at f4
The SMC 200 is better than the SMC 70-210 at f8.

But it's pretty strange that the SMC 70-210 looks better at f4 than at f8.

Alex, thanks for the test!
--

hugs,
Rafael Garcia

alex wetmore Senior Member • Posts: 1,394
Re: Short: Pentax (n/t)

T e o wrote:

My conclusions are:
The sigma is better in all the tests.

Agreed. If you want to carry it you need to be ready for the weight though.

The SMC 70-210 is better than the SMC 200 at f4
The SMC 200 is better than the SMC 70-210 at f8.

But it's pretty strange that the SMC 70-210 looks better at f4 than
at f8.

The f8 shots were corner samples and it is possible that there was a slight focus error.

FWIW, I don't think that resolution is the most important quality in a lens. I did a bokeh test for my lenses that had a focal length of 35mm to 50mm and found that to be more enlightening.

http://phred.org/~alex/pictures/pentax/bokeh/

When I'm looking at photographs (especially online where they are reduced quite a bit) I tend to notice the rendering out of focus areas much more than the resolution. This was a difficult test because I put highlights (xmas lights) in the background to see what types of halos developed. The zoom lenses tend to be much harsher than the primes.

FA 28-105/3.2-4.5 @ 50mm:

vs

A 50 @ 50mm:

The zoom lens (top one) puts a sharp edge at the outside of out of focus areas. On the lights this shows up as a halo. On the background plants this shows up as a very noisy bokeh. The A 50 does a much nicer job.

I never did the same test with my 200mm lenses, but probably should have.

alex

wadam Senior Member • Posts: 1,066
Re: Pentax SMC A 70/210 f4 against the Pentax SMC M 200 f4

I'm going to go against the grain and recommend the M200/4. I don't own a 70-210, but in my experience the 200/4 is very sharp and has beautiful bokeh. Here are a couple of samples, taken a couple of days ago, at f4:

pog Regular Member • Posts: 451
+2 on the A 70-210/f4

Only my incurable LBA keeps me lusting for something better than this lens... objectively speaking, its quality exceeds my photographic ability.

However, I am often in situations where I could use an extra stop of viewfinder brightness and narrower DoF... I am eagerly awaiting the release of the 50-135 f/2.8. My wife/wallet are less enthused but I can always compromise with the latter after bribing the first. LOL!

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Pentax K-3 Pentax smc FA 50mm F1.4 Pentax smc DA 16-45mm F4 ED AL Pentax smc FA 77mm 1.8 Limited Sigma 28mm F1.8 EX DG Aspherical Macro +3 more
wjwncpro_Ds Veteran Member • Posts: 3,984
Real world test

I don't normally shoot newsprint; instead, I just shot a couple from out my hotel door...

Both shot jpg, and f8, with same amount of sharpening on both, resized for web, no other PP...
M200/f8, 1/500, iso200

A70-210 at 200/f8, 1/350, iso200, EV+1/2

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My Pentax *ist DS galleries http://www.pbase.com/wjwncpro/wjwncpro (GMT-5)

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