Pentax DA 16-45mm 1:4 ED/AL review
The 16-45mm features a decidedly utilitarian design, with far more attention to functionality than aesthetics. It feels reasonably well-made, with construction quality very similar to, and perhaps a notch above, the 18-55mm kit lens (which for once is no bad thing). The lens mount is metal, and the body constructed from metal and high-grade plastics. The extra-wide zoom ring, with its deeply ribbed hard rubber grip, is especially welcome, and a decent manual focus ring with distance scale completes the package. At a lightweight 365g, this is also a lens which you can easily carry on the camera all day long. However it’s not built quite up to the standards of Pentax’s high-end F2.8 SWM zooms, and is not weather sealed to match the K10D or K20D camera bodies.The most unusual feature of this lens is its ‘reverse zoom’ design, meaning that it is shortest at 45mm telephoto and extends substantially to the 16mm wideangle position. This is rare in a lens of this class, and more usually found in professional-level F2.8 standard zooms. A practical impact is that this gives rise to some shadowing of the built-in flash at wideangle settings.
On the camera
The lens feels well-balanced on the K10D used for testing; the wide zoom ring provides a natural grip for the left hand, and the manual focus ring can be operated readily with just the forefinger. Overall it is a delight to use.
Autofocus is driven by a screw-drive system from the camera body, so AF speed, noise and accuracy is fundamentally dependant on the camera used. On our K10D test body, we found focusing to be generally fast and accurate under most conditions, although with a certain tendency to struggle a bit in low light. Here the faster than usual F4 maximum aperture at the telephoto end confers a noticeable advantage over the 18-55mm kit lens.
Lens body elements
Reported aperture vs focal length
With its constant maximum aperture, the lens gives a maximum aperture of F4, and a minimum of F22, at all focal lengths.
Jan 28, 2008
Jan 26, 2011
Jan 26, 2011
Jan 20, 2011
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