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01-04-2011, 03:47 PM   #1
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DA* 50-135 or DA 18-135?

Hey everyone, I've been planning on snagging the new 18-135mm WR lens this month but I took a peek at the marketplace here and now I'm wondering if I should try to snag a DA* 50-135mm instead.

I'm shooting with a K-X and have the 18-55mm kit lens, the new 35mm f2.4 AL and a 50mm f1.7. Since I bought the 50 and 35, the kit lens has become a paperweight, haha. I need something with a little more reach though, but I'm just not sure which zoom would a better decision. Any thoughts?

If I get the 50-135 I'll plan on getting a nice wide angle lens next to cover the lower end of things. So, it seems the 50-135 would be a better decision? Larger aperture, higher quality glass, better weather sealing... yeah?

01-04-2011, 04:28 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by jremick Quote
Hey everyone, I've been planning on snagging the new 18-135mm WR lens this month but I took a peek at the marketplace here and now I'm wondering if I should try to snag a DA* 50-135mm instead.

I'm shooting with a K-X and have the 18-55mm kit lens, the new 35mm f2.4 AL and a 50mm f1.7. Since I bought the 50 and 35, the kit lens has become a paperweight, haha. I need something with a little more reach though, but I'm just not sure which zoom would a better decision. Any thoughts?

If I get the 50-135 I'll plan on getting a nice wide angle lens next to cover the lower end of things. So, it seems the 50-135 would be a better decision? Larger aperture, higher quality glass, better weather sealing... yeah?
That would be my choice. While I have seen a few photos from the 18-135 that didn't look too bad, I've seen more that are, IMO, unimpresssive. OTOH, the 50-135 is pretty much universally praised for its IQ. I can't imagine ever parting with mine. The only caveats to that lens are the comparatively slow AF and the possibility of SDM problems. I have not personally had any problems with SDM on any of my three, but others are staunchly against it. I can only imagine getting the 18-135 for my wife, as she hates changing lenses and hasn't ever forgiven me for selling her 18-250.
01-04-2011, 04:40 PM   #3
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IQ = DA* 50-135mm
Faster AF = DA 18-135mm

I'd choose the former.
01-04-2011, 04:40 PM   #4
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Thanks for the input! I've been reading enough praise about the 50-135 that it seems to far outweigh the complaints of SDM issues. I'll be getting this lens unless someone can put up an argument as to why I shouldn't, haha. I keep reading great things about it's IQ and the larger aperture will definitely help me out.

Now I just need to crank out a big month (income) so I can get a wide angle and the K-5 soon.

Thanks again!

01-04-2011, 08:52 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by jremick Quote
Thanks for the input! I've been reading enough praise about the 50-135 that it seems to far outweigh the complaints of SDM issues.
After you go through a few motors and your warranty has expired, you'll come to your senses - but by that time it will be too late. Between reading this forum and dpreview I wouldn't waste my time with an SDM lens even if it was free. So good luck Chuck, you'll need it.
01-04-2011, 08:53 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by JHD Quote
After you go through a few motors and your warranty has expired, you'll come to your senses - but by that time it will be too late. Between reading this forum and dpreview I wouldn't waste my time with an SDM lens even if it was free. So good luck Chuck, you'll need it.
What lens would you recommend to cover the 50-135(+) focal range instead of the DA* with comparable IQ?
01-04-2011, 09:12 PM   #7
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JHD has been hating on SDM for awhile, but i feel that he was one of the unlucky one that struck with a SDM problem. I think the majority of its owners never really had any issues with focusing, so it is your call.

If you're sticking to primes, the 77mm or the 100mm WR Macro are both fine choices IMO. I'll still go with the 50-135mm though. =]

Cheers
01-04-2011, 09:15 PM   #8
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While others may have problems with the SDM lens. I have both DA* 16-50mm and 50-135mm, so far they are holding up quite well. I would highly recommend that.

01-04-2011, 09:28 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by JHD Quote
After you go through a few motors and your warranty has expired, you'll come to your senses - but by that time it will be too late. Between reading this forum and dpreview I wouldn't waste my time with an SDM lens even if it was free. So good luck Chuck, you'll need it.
Really, even if they were free? I think it would be hard to turn down a free DA*50-135


All kidding aside, it's quite clear you have no love for SDM, which is perfectly understandable given their less than stellar track record. That said, unless a potential buyer is super risk-adverse, it seems silly to completely dismiss a fantastic lens like the DA*50-135 just because it might break in the future. Just my two cents.
01-04-2011, 09:29 PM   #10
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Well, it'll be here thursday morning.

Decided to go with a brand new one so I have the security of a warranty and, you know, to enjoy that new lens-ness, haha. Can't wait to play with it!

Thanks for all the input everyone, much appreciated.
01-04-2011, 10:34 PM   #11
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If you can afford it, the 50-135.

I however cannot afford the 50-135, so I bought the 18-135 and absolutely love it
01-04-2011, 10:54 PM   #12
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I can't deny that some folks have had problems with their SDM lenses.

I have 2 SDM lenses, both over a year old, and they always work reliably for me, the 50-135 and the DA300. the 50-135 is a range where i use it much more frequently and would be the least likely to sell. optics on both are stellar. When it rains, the 50-135 always goes on. nice long hood keeps raindrops off the lens - which is no small advantage. I've sold photos from both.
01-04-2011, 11:02 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by jremick Quote
Hey everyone, I've been planning on snagging the new 18-135mm WR lens this month but I took a peek at the marketplace here and now I'm wondering if I should try to snag a DA* 50-135mm instead.

I'm shooting with a K-X and have the 18-55mm kit lens, the new 35mm f2.4 AL and a 50mm f1.7. Since I bought the 50 and 35, the kit lens has become a paperweight, haha. I need something with a little more reach though, but I'm just not sure which zoom would a better decision. Any thoughts?

If I get the 50-135 I'll plan on getting a nice wide angle lens next to cover the lower end of things. So, it seems the 50-135 would be a better decision? Larger aperture, higher quality glass, better weather sealing... yeah?
Sigma 70-200 or Tamron 70-200/2.8. the k-x is not weather-sealed.
01-04-2011, 11:11 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
Sigma 70-200 or Tamron 70-200/2.8. the k-x is not weather-sealed.
The K-5 is on the list, probably two months out after a couple other lenses. Weather sealing is important (I already risk the K-X enough as it is, lol).
01-05-2011, 06:51 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxor Quote
the k-x is not weather-sealed.
K-x + Ziploc bag + DA* have been working out perfect for me.
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