I have consolidated my DA 40mm f/2.8 limited and FA 50mm f/1.4 into one single prime with Pentax FA 43mm f/1.9 limited. After trimming my DA limited trio with 21, 40 and 70, I am down to 4 limited lens with two DA limited and two FA limited.
- 15, 35, 43 and 77
and I find the 43mm limited to be a great replacement for my DA 40mm f/2.8 limited. The 40mm limited is an under-rated limited lens but the 43mm stands out in speed and color. I found the 40 limited sharp even wide open but the gain of speed in the 43mm is especially useful in indoor and low light shooting. Though it is not pancake small like the 40mm limited, it is a delight to use with aperture ring and a removable lens hood that is not adding too much bulkiness to the lens. It has a charming factor on its own rights.
When I used it in a weekend in an Art & Wine festival and an indoor night club shooting with Pentax K20D, I was very impressed with its sharpness, color and small form factor like the other limited lens.
A big crop to see the Love Bird in f/5.6
wide open in f/1.9
soft but usable
soft but usable
1/6 sec, f/1.9, iso 800, 43mm, +0.3 Ev, K20D
1/8 sec, f/1.9, iso 800, 43mm, +0.3 Ev, K20D
Impressions & Notes
- I find it a good replacement for consolidating my two lens with DA 40mm f/2.8 limited and FA 50mm f/1.4 into one.
- Not pancake small like the DA 40mm f/2.8 limited but it actually is small like the 21mm and its lens hood is reasonably good in size and removable. I actually don't mind and find the size quite ideal for both digital and film. It is smaller and more compact than the FA 50mm f/1.4.
- It beats the DA limited with an aperture ring and well suited for film bodies as in Pentax MX or my Ricoh xr-p. You can call me old school but I always prefers lens that work with both digital and film bodies.
- AF is not as fast as the DA 40mm f/2.8 limited.
- In the night club shooting, I had a very difficult time with AF assisted light from flash and it took a second or two to lock on focus. The difficulty had more to do with my K20D
- The gain of speed in f/1.9 offers tremendous help to my K20D shooting as I tried to avoid iso 1600 and I shot in iso 800 with f/1.9 for the test shots above. Though wide open maybe soft but I much rather have that option instead of bumping up ISO alone
- Lens is very sharp like the 77mm and it is cutter than the 77mm in terms of size. Color rendering is vivid and rich and it lives up to the expectation and positive experience with 77mm limited.
- Highly recommended limited lens