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06-16-2010, 07:47 AM   #1
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What To Get as My FIRST Macro Lens?

My current lens lineup is the FA 50mm, DA 10-17mm, and I'm waiting for my DA 12-24mm to come this week. I also own the DA* 55mm and DA 18-250mm but hardly used it since I gave my K200d to my friend as an attempt to lure her into the Pentax world. So far so good, she's impressed at what good lenses can do for pictures rather than what brand is on the camera (she may still end up going Canon and shooting with kit lenses but at least I tried). Anyway, on to my point...

Normally I just shoot landscapes, cityscapes, architecture and portraits and since I'm a bit of noob I'm now realizing I need a macro to get ridiculously close to those bugs in the flower shots which none of my current lenses can do, obviously (or have I not tried hard enough?).

I currently have my eyes on the 100mm WR as my first macro to add some focal range to my collection. I'd say I would like to get as close to the subject as possible but would the 100mm focal length be too much anyway? I probably would have to let go of the FA 50mm 1.4 if I considered the D FA 50mm 2.8 but I don't see it being something I want to do.

This leaves me at my other option at the DA 35mm. This is also attractive to me since it's a limited lens but then again I plan on getting the DA 40mm in the future as well. I'll probably end up with all 4 limited at some point but not so soon.

Looking at all the pics here and flickr is making this decision tough. Should I go with the 100mm or the 35mm first? I honestly need input on this one.

06-16-2010, 07:55 AM   #2
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Are you sure you want to stick with Pentax brand? I have never used it, but I hear that the Tamron 90mm Macro is simply amazing. At least, that's what I've heard. I'm sure others here can verify...

However, the Tamron will run you at least $200 cheaper. Therefore, you'd have at least $200 to put towards another lens, like the 35mm limited.

Just a thought anyway.
06-16-2010, 07:55 AM   #3
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100 is perfect--you don't have to get right on top of the subject.

Also take a good look at the 90 Tamron Macro. I have it, and it's a highly respected lens.

Some people think it feels a little cheap (I don't)...and the manual/autofocus mechanism is a weird push/pull thing...but I absolutely love it.

Fantastic for portraits too.
06-16-2010, 07:58 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ron_Man Quote
I'm now realizing I need a macro to get ridiculously close to those bugs in the flower shots which none of my current lenses can do, obviously (or have I not tried hard enough?).

I currently have my eyes on the 100mm WR as my first macro to add some focal range to my collection. I'd say I would like to get as close to the subject as possible but would the 100mm focal length be too much anyway?
None of your current lenses will do true macro. You could add a Raynox adapater to increase their magnification, but this is a bit of a compromise compared to a true macro lens.

Both the D FA 100mm and the DA 35 Ltd do 1:1 macro, so the image size at closest magnification will be equal. What changes is the working distance (lens-to-subject distance). For insects you will want the much longer subject distance afforded by the 100mm lens. It also seems to fit your kit better right now, as it's a pretty spiffy telephoto too.

06-16-2010, 07:59 AM   #5
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Here are a few I did with mine. Does macro, and more:





06-16-2010, 08:14 AM   #6
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I was looking for Tamron 90mm too (Sigma 105 also), but at the end I went for Pentax 100mm WR. I bouht it last week and I managed to do those two photos among others.
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06-16-2010, 08:15 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ubuntu_user Quote
Are you sure you want to stick with Pentax brand?

Just a thought anyway.
I wondered the same thing but I absolutely love Pentax lenses. It's kind of the reason why I haven't switched to Canon since I can get great lenses. I figured if I were to shoot with off-brands than I might as well shoot Canon or Nikon. I guess I choose to be biased in this regard.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
100 is perfect--you don't have to get right on top of the subject.

Also take a good look at the 90 Tamron Macro. I have it, and it's a highly respected lens.

Some people think it feels a little cheap (I don't)...and the manual/autofocus mechanism is a weird push/pull thing...but I absolutely love it.

Fantastic for portraits too.

QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
None of your current lenses will do true macro. You could add a Raynox adapater to increase their magnification, but this is a bit of a compromise compared to a true macro lens.

Both the D FA 100mm and the DA 35 Ltd do 1:1 macro, so the image size at closest magnification will be equal. What changes is the working distance (lens-to-subject distance). For insects you will want the much longer subject distance afforded by the 100mm lens. It also seems to fit your kit better right now, as it's a pretty spiffy telephoto too.
QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
Here are a few I did with mine. Does macro, and more:

THANKS! I thought the 100mm would suffice. I figured the 35mm wouldn't be a long enough reach anyway so thanks for the insights! I think I'm sold on the 100mm
06-16-2010, 08:35 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by trco Quote
i was looking for tamron 90mm too (sigma 105 also), but at the end i went for pentax 100mm wr. I bouht it last week and i managed to do those two photos among others.
nice!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

06-16-2010, 09:19 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ron_Man Quote
I gave my K200d to my friend as an attempt to lure her into the Pentax world.
Giving chicks free cameras. Nice marketing.
06-16-2010, 09:20 AM   #10
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Or go cheap

And get a Pentax M100/4 or M50/4 for practically no money. AF doesn't matter much when shooting macro anyway, and optically they're both great. Also, it'll let you find out if you really like macro shooting with practically no investment.


/jens
06-16-2010, 09:22 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ron_Man Quote
I wondered the same thing but I absolutely love Pentax lenses. It's kind of the reason why I haven't switched to Canon since I can get great lenses. I figured if I were to shoot with off-brands than I might as well shoot Canon or Nikon. I guess I choose to be biased in this regard.
I totally understand, because I'm the same way! I went with the 100mm instead of the tamron. Maybe one could call it being a "loyalist." But I think not... Like you say, Pentax glass is simply stellar.
06-16-2010, 09:33 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by jensm Quote
And get a Pentax M100/4 or M50/4 for practically no money.
I hate when people state such things. It is always false, especially if you must pay shipping. The advantage of cheap pentax lenses is long gone. Currently old Pentax lenses are overpriced unless you inherit them or get from some friend. For the skyrocketed price they currently go, it is more wiser to spend money on modern lens with AF, correct metering and flash support.
06-16-2010, 10:02 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by jensm Quote
And get a Pentax M100/4 or M50/4 for practically no money.
They're only 1:2 macro, like a lot of zooms. Real 1:1 is a different world.
06-16-2010, 10:10 AM   #14
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i had the same issue being stuck between the tamron 90 and the dfa 100 wr. in the end, i bolted for the WR and i just cannot imagine using the tamron anymore. the size is small, the built is superb, and the quality, OMG!!!!

But it does cost around 600, so it is your call.
06-16-2010, 10:18 AM   #15
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I swear by my Sigma 50mm 2.8 EX macro lens. It cost only about $275.
and has wonderful color, sharpness, bokeh and you can get up real close
for flower shots . I prefer it over my DA40mm ltd. lens because you can
get really close for macro shots with the Sigma. Check out some of my
shots in the macro forums. Freddy
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