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11-25-2010, 09:35 AM   #1
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Considering Pentax DA 10-17mm

I have a new k-r (upgrade from k100d) on a truck on it's way to my house and am in a new toy buying mode ;-).
On a forum I frequent I can get the aforementioned lens at a good price.
I am curious if anyone with this lens can comment on it's abilities as a straight up wide angle at 17mm. Can it truly replace a wide angle?
Or is it really more of a one trick pony lens?

11-25-2010, 11:30 AM   #2
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I have this lens and love it. At 10mm you can get pretty creative, and 17mm it's a great lens for just about anything. At 10mm, you get a 180 degree view, really amazing. This lens really gathers light and is great for low light situations. I use it to shoot interiors with no flash, the results are great. IMHO, this lens is not a "one trick pony." The limits are up to the photographer. When I got the lens, my challenge to myself was to use it exclusively for 30 days so that I would be forced to learn how to use the lens under all sorts of conditions. It's a great exercise, I have some great shots and use this lens regularly. I highly recommend it. Also, below is a link to a very intersting artical about fish eye lenses.
Fisheye Photos and Theory

Hope this helps.
11-25-2010, 12:16 PM   #3
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The lens also exhibits some fish-eye distortion at 17mm. If you need a rectilinear lens, the 10-17 is not for you unless you are up to correcting the fish-eye effect in post processing.

But is is a fun lens to use!
11-25-2010, 02:04 PM   #4
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I looked at this about 5 years ago and decided then rightly or wrongly for the sigma 10-20. the selling pitch of the pentax was the software to correct for the distortion, but all that is history now.,

I am happy with my decision, but have since bought an 8mm samyang fisheye

11-25-2010, 02:20 PM   #5
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Amazing lens. Whenever I take it on a trip I end up using it more than any other lens. As David said, it's extremely versatile once you learn how to use it. The close focusing ability is great fun, too.
11-25-2010, 02:29 PM   #6
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Here is a comparison shot I post on occasion. I wish I had shot one at 10mm, but it's too late now...

I would never travel without the 10-17.

11-25-2010, 03:27 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ole Quote
The lens also exhibits some fish-eye distortion at 17mm. If you need a rectilinear lens, the 10-17 is not for you unless you are up to correcting the fish-eye effect in post processing.

But is is a fun lens to use!
The distortion at 17mm is not too bad and is easily fixable in software (e.g. PTLens) if needed. With most shots you probably won't bother.





As a fish-eye, the possibilities are endless ! - 10-17mm Fisheye SmartSet - a set on Flickr
11-25-2010, 04:51 PM   #8
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Like others have said, if your main goal is normal wide angle shooting then the 10-17 is not for you. The distortion is really evident at 10mm and still a bit at 17mm and that is why I always shoot at 10mm for the creative aspect. If you want a wider angle than the kit lens and don't want to break the bank I suggest the 16-45. But all in all the 10-17 is a REALLY fun lens to use, as long as you know it's limits.

11-25-2010, 05:05 PM   #9
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I always carry this lens when traveling. It is great for pictures where you want to take it all in.
Hoover Dam last month......
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11-25-2010, 05:13 PM   #10
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Here are two from NASA in Florida. Both taken from same place. First at 17mm second at 10mm. You can get an idea of the distortion at each focal length.
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11-25-2010, 05:42 PM   #11
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It appears that you have received some good advice. I picked up the lens over 4 years ago with somewhat the same idea. I am happy with it, however it is not a full replacement for a non fisheye or rectilinear lens. I would suggest that you download a copy of PTLens (its free) and get a copy of a 10-17 image with exif data so that you can play with the conversion, to see what you want to do.

Overall, as others have written, its a lens that when you have really large items or are really very close to something, its a lens that always comes through. I also have the 12-24 and the two paired together complement each other very well.

hope that helps...

11-25-2010, 07:23 PM   #12
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Simple solution is to rent before you buy.

Camera Lens Rentals is your friend.
11-25-2010, 08:11 PM   #13
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QuoteQuote:
The distortion at 17mm is not too bad and is easily fixable in software (e.g. PTLens) if needed.
Makes no sense. Why would you "correct" the designed result of the lens?
If you don't like the effect then you should not be buying the lens.
11-25-2010, 09:26 PM   #14
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I've owned the 10-17 for over a year now and love it. It does show some distortion across the full zoom range but not much at 17mm. I agree with SpecialK, why try to correct the design of the lens? On a few rare occasions I have cropped out some of my shots or corrected them in software because I didn't have time to change lenses. That's ok, we all have to make due with the lens that's on the camera at the moment sometimes. This lens is a little cheaper but don't buy this lens with the intention of de-fishing it in software. It won't work all the time and you won't be happy. I bought mine in the Marketplace from an unhappy user who thought it would be suitable as a normal wide angle. If you can't live with the distortion, buy the DA 12-24 or DA 15. Better yet, buy them all!
11-26-2010, 01:19 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
Makes no sense. Why would you "correct" the designed result of the lens?
If you don't like the effect then you should not be buying the lens.
The point being that the 10-17 is usable both as a fisheye and as a near rectilinear wide angle.
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