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11-28-2010, 03:45 PM   #1
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Building a Pentax system

Hello there! My name is Ole. I've been shooting Canon for the past two years, but now I'm longing home for Pentax. My very first DSLR was a Samsung GX-10 (basically a K10D), and I even had the 43 ltd. for a while. However, back then, the GX-10 couldn't compare with the 5D, and alas, I made the jump.

Now I want to come back. The new K-5 looks like a fantastic camera. Very capable at high isos, built in IS and high DR makes this an attractive camera to me. The small size and lightweight options are also tempting for the kind of shooting I do - I mainly shoot people. Both staged and candid shots. You may have a look at my flickr if you wish. Having a compact kit is something I've learnt to value over these years, and my Canon 5D doesn't really provide it.

The K-5 looks like it will be excellent for my type of photography. A lot more silent than my 5D, smaller, less obtrusive, lighter, better at high isos, built in IS, rugged build (quite important up here in Norway!).

However, I'm not sure which lenses to get for the K-5. I've been using my 5D almost exclusively with the 35mm f/1.4L. That lens gives a very nice fov for me on the FF 5D. The eq. for Pentax would be a 24mm, but there seems to be a hole in Pentax' lineup here.

I also want a longer lens, and I've pretty much decided on the DA 70 due to it's tiny size.

I'm considering to get the legendary 31mm ltd. as well, to act as a normal lens.

Basically, this leaves me:

Wide: ???
Normal: FA 31mm ltd.
Tele: DA 70mm ltd.

I would love suggestions on how to solve this. By the way, I'm not entirely sure if this is the right place to post this - if it isn't, please, tell me.

Thanks in advance!

11-28-2010, 03:56 PM   #2
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do you have to go exclusively with pentax lenses?

i think sigma lenses can definitely fill in the holes in the pentax lineup.
11-28-2010, 03:59 PM   #3
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well if you want a wide prime then the DA 15 Limited would be the obvious choice ... although I must warn you, it is very small, very cool, likes the sun and can control minds
11-28-2010, 04:02 PM   #4
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Big part of the reason going with Pentax in the first place are their lenses, especially the Limiteds with their metal build, and the pancakes.

I've owned a Sigma 18-50/2.8, and I didn't like it. I hate the finish, the colours are dull and very prone to flare. So I would rather not walk down that path again.

I should also mention that I'm a prime guy!

11-28-2010, 04:08 PM   #5

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I feel this darn hole myself. 35mm equivalent deserves fast prime lens.
I have purchased a second hand FA*24 that still works well. You may be lucky to find it too. Sigma 24/1.8 exists, but I don't like it (my GF uses it in Canon mount) for the character and overall IQ. Is is also very large lens.
Otherwise there is a DA21 but you won't get much DOF control with slow f3.2 aperture.
11-28-2010, 04:22 PM   #6
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The DA 60-250 is an excellent tele imo, and the 100mm macro can fill that slot as well:
SMC Pentax-DA* 60-250mm F4 ED [IF] SDM Lens Reviews - Pentax Lens Review Database

smc PENTAX-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR Lens Reviews - Pentax Lens Review Database
11-28-2010, 04:33 PM   #7
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For wide, the 15 makes the most sense if you want primes. The 12-24 if you want wider potential and some flexibility.
11-28-2010, 06:08 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
+1 with Adam on the 100mm.

I could suggest a fast prime about 50mm (~50mm f1.4). There are the Carl Zeiss 50mm f1.4 () and Voigtlander Nokton 58mm f1.4 (Voigtlander 58mm f1.4 Lens Reviews - Pentax Third-Party Lens Review Database), for example, that are both known for their IQ.

Food for thoughts...

11-28-2010, 06:33 PM   #9
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the 100mm WR is incredible
11-29-2010, 12:23 AM   #10
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Thanks for the suggestions everyone.

The 60-250 is probably a nice lens, but it's not very interesting for me because of it's size and weight. I probably won't need more tele than the DA 70/FA 77 provides. Nice to have the option anyway though!

hcc: The Nokton in particular looked interesting, with a FOV almost equal to my current EF 85 1.8 on FF. But that would make the DA70 redundant.
11-29-2010, 12:58 AM   #11
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I've got a hankering for the DA 15mm f/4 Limited. The DA 14mm f/2.8 might also be something which would interest you... but it is larger and heavier than the Limiteds.
11-29-2010, 01:34 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lovold Quote
hcc: The Nokton in particular looked interesting, with a FOV almost equal to my current EF 85 1.8 on FF. But that would make the DA70 redundant.
Voigtlander has stopped to manufactured its length with K-mount. A pity, but the lenses will become classics: they are well liked by pentaxians.

The Voigtlander Nokton 58mm f1.4 is a really interesting lens. It is also very sturdy and that is a great advantage when you shoot outdoor.

I understand however your dilemma with DA70. In my case, I have a 90mm, the 58mm and soon the 31 mm...
11-29-2010, 02:12 AM   #13
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As you're looking for a 35mm equivalent, DA21 might be an option.

Combined with the "longer" pancakes lenses, the DA 40mm f/2.8 Limited and DA 70mm f/2.4 Limited, you'd have a complete yet very unobtrusive fix-focal lens setup for street photography.
The FA31Ltd is a beautiful bitch. After about a year, I'm still trying to tame it. If I get it right, it's absolutely amazing but that's not happening often enough.
11-29-2010, 04:33 AM   #14
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During a workshop I took this past August I shot alongside a pro who used a 5Dmk2 with a short L zoom and a nice 14mm prime. I wouldn't say his camera was louder than my K200D nor that the camera body itself was significantly larger. Have you exhausted all of the lens options for your 5D? I imagine a 35/1.4L is rather big in size so that's a given but have you taken a good look at the size of the K-5 compared to your 5D? Perhaps there is another system which would give a greater reduction in size overall.
11-29-2010, 04:40 AM   #15
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hcc: What a shame!

sterretje: I've looked at it. Seems a bit slow though.

B Grace: The size and weight reduction is quite significant and becomes apparent when using the camera everyday.

Ideally, I'd opt for Leica - but I'm not really that rich, although I could afford an M9 body and a Nokton from what I get from selling my 5D system and lights.

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