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Old Mar 15, 2008, 8:52 AM   #1
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I really like my 50mm 1.4, but want something longer with similar capabilities. For the most part, this seems to point to the 77 limited, but ouch, what a price tag. Of course, anything longer is even worse, cost/availability-wise (85 1.4). I may wait for another season of rebates on the limiteds before I get serious.

So....can anyone comment on the cost vs. user experience of the 77 limited? Thanks!
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Old Mar 15, 2008, 1:10 PM   #2
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Can't comment on the 77 Lim, but my experience is that cost is soon forgotten, while lens quality keep reminding of it's presence.

Kjell
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Old Mar 15, 2008, 3:47 PM   #3
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bilybianca wrote:
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Can't comment on the 77 Lim, but my experience is that cost is soon forgotten, while lens quality keep reminding of it's presence.
Hi pwithem,

I don't own one either. My needs are pretty much met at this FL by my Tamron 28-75/2.8 XR Di. . . and the DA*50-135, and the zoom range of either is important to the purpose I put these lenses to. A prime would be better, IQ-wise, but much less practical in my use. The zooms work for me, and while I'd love one (who wouldn't?), I don't use the FL enough to justify the cost of a premium prime.

I'll go along with Kjell here. The 77Ltd has a stellar reputation (and among Pentax glass, that really means something), but there's a lot to recommend the DA70/2.4. You can read test of both at Photozone

http://www.photozone.de/pentax

I've read that at least a few very credible street shooters have chosen the DA70 Ltd, even after having and liking the FA77 Ltd. I understand part of their decision was the size and cost, but these are generally guys who place a premium on IQ.

I don't think that you could go wrong with either. As Kjell said, the cost is soon forgotten when you get a truly great lens -- the payback is the potential for great images, and that just keeps on producing.

The one drawback is that once exposed to a truly great lens -- the bar of expectations from your glass gets raised -- and LBA starts to really get expensive. . .:O

Scott
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Old Mar 15, 2008, 4:14 PM   #4
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I had looked at the DA 70, but I think i'd want the extra stops on the 77. Also, a part of me would like to stick to full frame glass for that future day when pentax makes a full frame body.
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The one drawback is that once exposed to a truly great lens -- the bar of expectations from your glass gets raised -- and LBA starts to really get expensive. .
This is part of my problem with the 50 1.4. I was taking pictures of a dinner/speaker event for a grad student club with my DS and K10. Lighting was very dim and I had my 50mm 1.4 and a 28-105 3.2-5.6. I only had internal flashes, so I knew I had get to in people's faces if I want to expose a shot. the 28-105 was almost useless at f3.2 unless i was really right in people's faces. My wonderful 50mm did a respectable job with the internal flash and could even get a few decent shots without flashing.

So, from this I could simply get a flash - which is not a bad idea in general - or I could delay that and put that money plus a bit extra in another beautiful lens, which is more representative of the shooting I like to do (i.e., non-flash photography).

I think my mind's made up, but I'll wait a bit to see if any rebates show up.

Pat
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Old Mar 16, 2008, 10:06 AM   #5
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I don't have the 77 limited, but I got a chance to shoot with one before Christmas (the Pentax rep was at my local camera store and had one he let me use). It's a lovely lens, has nice color, incredibly sharp and all that speed. I compared it to my DA*50-135 and was surprised at how well my zoom lens did compared to it. It convinced me that for what I do, the DA*50-135 would be the better solution, and I couldn't notice what little I was giving up in quality by going with the zoom. That doesn't change the fact that I'd really like to ownthis lens, just because its a work of art, easy to use, lighter than the zoomand there's something intangeable about itthat makes my mouth water. I can't logically explain it at all. I doubt I'd get it any time soon - too many other things I want to buy that I feel a need for, rather than a desire.
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Old Mar 16, 2008, 10:26 AM   #6
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thanks, that's good to know. The other lens I've been thinking about is the DA*16-50, which I thought I could treat as a "prime" wide lens - which would be a bonus, as I'd mainly want it for the weather sealing. Unfortunately, that lens isn't cheap either. Now if I could just coin a new lens-related affliction I'll be well on my way to scoring some free lenses...
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Old Mar 16, 2008, 11:52 AM   #7
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I have not used the 77mm; I have only lusted after it. For shooting indoor action, the extra light is sometimes a necessity. I love to shoot basketball with my DA*50-135, but most of the high school gyms in which I shoot don't have enough light for me to shoot with it. Thus, I have to drop to the FA 50mm f1.4. It's a great lens, but the reach just isn't what I need.

The 77mm is currently about #3 on my wish list behind the K20 and the Bigma. (I already have the Tamon 70-200 f2.8 on order.)
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Old Mar 16, 2008, 12:17 PM   #8
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I have the 40 2.8 Limited & and the DA 21 3.2 Limited. These are the two best lenses I have ever used-bar none. The limited series is an engineering marvel. I also havea DA 16-45 (never use it-way too soft) and the DA 50-200. I consider these an investment-build quality exceeds all expectations. Over the past 25 years I have owned about 25 different lenses for Pentax (Terminal LBA) including Sigma, Tokina ATX, & Tamron. They all moved to second place once I bought the Limited Series.
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Old Mar 16, 2008, 4:54 PM   #9
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i have the fa 77 limited and it is a wonderful lens. personally i don't think there is another lens in pentax's lineup that compares to it. as for the cost, mine was $689 (i had to look that up) which at the time was the most i had ever spent on a single lens. was it worth it... i'd say so. once i started using the lens i quickly forgot how much it cost and even forgot to send in the rebate, doh!!

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Old Mar 16, 2008, 5:01 PM   #10
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I've been tempted for the DA 40 because of it's size and the good things I've heard, but since I've already got a 50 1.4, I tell myself I'm better off getting something I don't currently have (i.e. 77 limited). Also, the 77 limited has what I really want: similar aperture range as the 50 1.4 but with extra reach.
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