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01-19-2011, 09:46 AM   #1
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Help! Lens Selection for Cruise

I am fortunate enough to be going on an Alaskan cruise with my wife in July. It will be a pretty basic 7 day cruise with maybe one offshore tour. I am assuming that most photography will be done from the ship. I am already planning my lens selection and would like some input from some who may have done an Alaskan cruise.
My lens list is as follows.
Pentax K5
Pentax DA 10-17 fisheye
Pentax DA*16-50mm
Pentax DA*50-135mm
Pentax DA 55-300mm
Pentax DA*300mm
Tamron 18-250mm
Sigma 50-500mm
Kenko 1.5x Teleconverter


I am also planning to bring a backpack along with a Lowepro Toploader to carry around daily. I am thinking I would like to keep the lens count down to 3 or 4. Any opinions would be much appreciated.

01-19-2011, 11:25 AM   #2
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I posted a somewhat similar query last month. You may want to check out the answers on that one with the link below.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/125247-cruise-...lp-needed.html

I went to the Caribbean, not Alaska.

I am only a hobby photographer but for my trip I took 2 camera bodies as I hated changing lenses in the field. The K2000 and the K5. The K2000 is pretty tiny so I did not mind the extra body. I had the 16-50 and the 50-135 but I pretty much used the 16-50 on the K5 for the majority of the time.
01-19-2011, 11:39 AM   #3
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The 16-50mm & 50-135mm seems to be the best general purpose range before one starts having specific (specialty) shots in mind. Or you could take the 16-50mm & 18-250mm if you need more reach on the long.
01-19-2011, 11:50 AM   #4
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I would think the 16-50 would cover most situations and I'd take the 55-300 for the rest. Enjoy your cruise. I really enjoyed mine.

01-19-2011, 11:53 AM   #5
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I would take a good general regular to portrait length lens and the best long zoom you've got. My folks did that type of cruise years ago and 90% of your shots will either be fairly close up shots of the ship and the people or animals and scenic stuff WAY off in the distance. My Dad didn't have an SLR, just a pocket camera and while his on the ship shots were fine, he never got one shot of anything that they saw off the ship because it was often so far away. A 300mm plus zoom would be a must pack for this one.
01-19-2011, 12:09 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies. I was considering taking the Bigma or the DA30 but I am afraid packing them around would get old. I believe the 16-50, 55-300 and maybe get the new DA35mm f2.4 prime for something light.
01-19-2011, 02:29 PM   #7
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Your selection in the last post is what I would suggest. I went on the Alaska cruise in 2009 and attended a wedding on board. Most of my shots were with the Sigma 18-50 2.8 and the Da 55-300.

I did have the Bigma with me as we sailed from Vancouver, BC and I did not have to worry about any flight restrictions. The Bigma did come in handy at the glacier but I could have obtained most of the shots with the 55-300. The DAL 25 2.4 would have been nice to have on that trip for a light compact system. Most of the shore excursions I took the 18-50 and the 55-300 for longer shots. You want to enjoy the trip as well as get some great photos.

I am going to Hawaii later this year and plan on taking the K5 with the 18-135 the 55-300 and the 35 2.4 On another cruise I would take my Sigma 18-50 2.8 again for a faster lens for on board shots in addition to the three mentioned.

Have a great cruise.
01-19-2011, 02:46 PM   #8
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Based on your list, what's your question?

Just bring everything you own, and spend half the cruise changing lenses.

01-19-2011, 03:11 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
Based on your list, what's your question?

Just bring everything you own, and spend half the cruise changing lenses.
LOL! that is what my wife says.
The brown truck just delivered the DA*300. I sure would like to take it..... Probably not though. I'll save it and the bigma for my summertime wildlife shots. .I have a Kenko teleconverter coming too. Might play with it and see if it might be worth taking for possible use with the 55-300.
01-19-2011, 07:26 PM   #10
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I would not be going on a vacation without the 10-17. With the choice of your other lenses I'd also take the 16-50 and 55-300.
01-19-2011, 08:34 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by GaryH Quote
LOL! that is what my wife says.
The brown truck just delivered the DA*300. I sure would like to take it..... Probably not though. I'll save it and the bigma for my summertime wildlife shots. .I have a Kenko teleconverter coming too. Might play with it and see if it might be worth taking for possible use with the 55-300.
I just don't think you need anywhere near that many lenses!
01-19-2011, 09:15 PM   #12
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Nice! Where are you stopping? I just did a cruise last May, I had a great time. Some great vistas and wildlife in Alaska, and my gf said that the whale watching and sea otter excursion she did (I get seasick on small boats) was the best she'd ever been on.

I would bring the 16-50 and the 55-300. The former for walking around, any excursions, and vistas from the boat. The latter for wildlife, which will mostly be from the boat (unless you do a specific wildlife excursion like whale watching).
01-19-2011, 10:40 PM   #13
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I went on a cruise in December.

My kit consisted of:
Pentax K-7
FA 31mm Limited
DA 14mm f2.8
DA 50-200mm WR

Results:
Flickr: dslrninja's stuff tagged with cruise2010

I also have my blog postings where I talk about the cruise/photography here:
cruise | photographybanzai.com

Good luck and I hope you manage some fabulous images.

Edit,
After looking at your lens selection I think you could get by with the Pentax DA*16-50mm and Pentax DA 55-300mm, but I think bring the Pentax DA 10-17 fisheye as well would be fun for you to play with.

Last edited by sjwaldron; 01-19-2011 at 10:56 PM.
01-20-2011, 12:06 PM   #14
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My suggestion:

QuoteQuote:
Pentax DA 10-17 fisheye
Pentax DA*16-50mm
Pentax DA*50-135mm
Pentax DA 55-300mm
Pentax DA*300mm
Tamron 18-250mm
Sigma 50-500mm
Kenko 1.5x Teleconverter
Much as I love my DA18-250, I'd leave it behind if I had the rest of your kit. But, have you any faster glass? Some old Fast Fifty maybe? Because some cruise fun happens indoors, or ashore in the evening. Based upon my past (lousy) cruise experience, where I took 25 lenses but used about 5 of them, I'd say that ultrawide/fisheye, ultralong superzoom, and faster primes, are just the ticket. I have no DA* nor Ltd lenses; my current cruise kit (were I to subject myself to that again) might include:

DA10-17
Tamron 10-24
Zenitar 16/2.8
DA18-250
Vivitar 24/2
FA50/1.4
MacTak 50/4
Nikkor 85/2
Tak 135/2.5
Sigma 170-500

Why take a bunch of lenses cruising? Because you CAN! Why did I take MANY lenses on my previous cruise? Because I went on a multi-month drive afterwards. Why do I have so many wide lenses on my list? Because I LIKE wide; and because each is a different tool for different situations.
01-20-2011, 12:07 PM   #15
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I have decided on 3 lenses.
10-17
16-50 and the
55-300
these should cover most anything I might want to shoot and will fit in my Lowepro Classified 160
I have had great fun with the 10-17 and it is hard to leave it behind.
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