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Lens review

2011-03-18
 

Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR

11. Summary

Pros:
  • original, solid and sealed casing,
  • sensational image quality in the frame centre,
  • very good image quality on the edge of the frame,
  • practically zero distortion,
  • slight coma,
  • low astigmatism,
  • negligible vignetting.

Cons:

  • slow, noisy and averagely accurate autofocus.

The results of the tested lens don’t give us almost any reasons to complain. If only the producer decided to use the focus limiter the tested lens would be really beyond reproach. Even in the current situation the overtone of our summary can be only positive because the Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR is an instrument with splendid optics and very original look to boot.

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The fierce competition in this segment might be its only problem – almost every manufacturer on the market offers nowadays a macro lens which is optically very good and features a focal length ranging from 90 to105 mm. The cheapest Tamron 2.8/90 can be bought for about 150 $ less than the Pentax. Not much more expensive than the Tamron is the Tokina 2.8/100, a really splendid device optically as well as mechanically. The Sigma 2.8/105 is a bit more costly than the Tokina but still 120 $ cheaper than the Pentax. The Canon 2.8/100 Macro which is older and lacks stabilization, can be bought for about 1000 $. The only lens which features autofocus, lacks image stabilization and is more expensive than the Pentax at the same time is the Sony 2.8/100.

If the Pentax, like the Tamron, the Sigma or the Tokina, was manufactured in Japan we could understand its high price. However, Pentax decided to cut costs and move the production to a Vietnam factory but its lens is still more expensive than the rivals. It might incline some owners of Pentax reflex cameras to buy a product of independent producers instead.


Sample shots

Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/11.0, exp. 1/20 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.58 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/11.0, exp. 1/50 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.08 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/11.0, exp. 1/30 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 6.54 MB
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/14.0, exp. 1/20 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 8.07 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/16.0, exp. 1/20 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 6.5 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/16.0, exp. 1/13 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 6.06 MB
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/320 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.81 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/400 s, ISO 400
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 8.59 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.94 MB
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/2000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 9.49 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 6.1 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.5 MB
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 320
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.96 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 320
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.96 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/2500 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 8.83 MB
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 640
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 8.17 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 640
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 8.38 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/500 s, ISO 400
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 8.57 MB
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Pentax smc D FA 100 mm f/2.8 Macro WR - Summary
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/60 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.9 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/8.0, exp. 1/180 s, ISO 1250
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 8.78 MB
Camera: Pentax K-5
Parameters: 100 mm, f/8.0, exp. 1/50 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 4928×3264 pix, 7.29 MB

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