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10-17-2007, 10:41 AM   #1
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Help me choose my next lens, standard zoom

Hello all,

I had great advice the last time I posted, and ended up purchasing a couple great manual focus lenses which I've been using with great abandon. However, the convenience of a fast zoom is needed and so I am looking for your input and experience.

My wife and I had our first child (3 weeks, 2 days early) and I've been using my M50/1.4 a great deal, but my wife just can't get the hang of it and the kit lens has been killing her (she compares the images side by side and wonders if I'm doing something to the camera so she can't use it).

The primary use is to allow my wife to take good pictures in the widest variety of circumstances. I intend to buy a wide zoom, telephoto zoom (Bigma) and a Macro lens later.

I'm considering the following (in my order of preference):

Sigma 24-60 f/2.8 EX DG (I have two friends with this lens, it's amazing)
Sigma 28-70 f/2.8 EX DG (This is rated by PopPhoto almost as well as the above)
Sigma 18-50 f/2.8 EX DC Macro (Also rated well)

Please share your thoughts. Keep in mind my future purchase intentions and it must be a fast auto zoom in the $400-450 (street) price range. If price was no object, I'd grab the new limited pentax lens.

Thanks in advance for your input!

10-17-2007, 11:16 AM   #2
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Hi. For the "widest variety of circumstances", for me, it would have to be the 18-50mm. 28mm just wouldn't be anywhere near wide enough for me, 24-60 slightly better but still a bit limited in range.
10-17-2007, 11:25 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by ZaphodB Quote
Hi. For the "widest variety of circumstances", for me, it would have to be the 18-50mm. 28mm just wouldn't be anywhere near wide enough for me, 24-60 slightly better but still a bit limited in range.
Thanks... that's the kind of logical thinking I need before making a highly emotional LBA fueled decision like this.

Anyone else?
10-17-2007, 11:38 AM   #4
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Do you absolutely want a constant f/2.8 ? If not, you may want to consider the Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8-4.5. It is very well built, provides great IQ, and has a better reach the the 18-50mm. It should also be a bit cheaper.

If you do get the 16-50mm, make sure it is the newer "MACRO" version, it is significantly better than the previous incarnation of this lens.

10-17-2007, 11:41 AM   #5
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I was debating between the Sigma 18-50 f/2.8 and the DA 16-45 f/4, and finally decided on the Pentax when I saw a used one for a price I couldn't pass up. Otherwise, I would have gone for the extra stop on the Sigma. Looks like a great lens.
10-17-2007, 11:51 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by RBellavance Quote
Do you absolutely want a constant f/2.8 ? If not, you may want to consider the Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8-4.5. It is very well built, provides great IQ, and has a better reach the the 18-50mm. It should also be a bit cheaper.

If you do get the 16-50mm, make sure it is the newer "MACRO" version, it is significantly better than the previous incarnation of this lens.
Thanks for the input... I like the idea of a constant aperture lens but it's not critical. There have been times in the past couple weeks since we had our baby, that a longer focal length with a wider aperture would have been beneficial. I have looked at the 17-70 and if I change my mind about constant aperture... it's on my short list of contenders.

QuoteOriginally posted by Finn Quote
I was debating between the Sigma 18-50 f/2.8 and the DA 16-45 f/4, and finally decided on the Pentax when I saw a used one for a price I couldn't pass up. Otherwise, I would have gone for the extra stop on the Sigma. Looks like a great lens.
Thanks... another vote for the 18-50. I'm getting similar feedback at work. It's just so practical... it's like buying a Sedan instead of a Convertible, but I think it's a wise choice.
10-17-2007, 11:59 AM   #7
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Don't forget to check out the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8! That would make a great "new baby zoom"

Then add a Sigma 10-20mm for those W-I-D-E shots (use the kit lens while you save up)
10-17-2007, 12:04 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by egordon99 Quote
Don't forget to check out the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8! That would make a great "new baby zoom"

Then add a Sigma 10-20mm for those W-I-D-E shots (use the kit lens while you save up)
Thanks... you brought up something I forgot to ask. The tamron doesn't do as well on the short end but does significantly better than the three sigmas I mentioned on the long end (according to popphoto). I seem to recall several people raving about the tamron here... anyone else really like the tamron here?

10-17-2007, 12:13 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by matiki Quote
Thanks... you brought up something I forgot to ask. The tamron doesn't do as well on the short end but does significantly better than the three sigmas I mentioned on the long end (according to popphoto). I seem to recall several people raving about the tamron here... anyone else really like the tamron here?
I would advice you to consult also other sources like PhotoZone. If you dont find the lenses tested for pentax, you will in the nikon section. Both systems used the same sensor although slightly different processing so the results shouldnt be very different.
10-17-2007, 12:34 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gruoso Quote
I would advice you to consult also other sources like PhotoZone. If you dont find the lenses tested for pentax, you will in the nikon section. Both systems used the same sensor although slightly different processing so the results shouldnt be very different.
Thanks Gruoso... I'm going through their reviews now. So far they seem to parallel everyone else in terms of what they conclude, but they are arriving at their conclusions through different results. To be expected I guess. They are more favorable of the Tamron though...
10-17-2007, 12:45 PM   #11
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I agree with RBevallance. The Sigma 17-70 is a great lens with 'everyday walkaround' capabilities.
I really love this lens myself. Use it a lot.
10-17-2007, 02:28 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bramela Quote
I agree with RBevallance. The Sigma 17-70 is a great lens with 'everyday walkaround' capabilities.
I really love this lens myself. Use it a lot.
Thanks Bramela.

I've read more reviews at fred miranda and photozone and I think I'm farther from a decision than ever.

So far I've had two recommend the 17-70 macro, two for the 18-50/2.8 and one recommendation to check out the tamron 28-75... any other thoughts out there?

Thanks everyone for the advice so far.
10-17-2007, 02:46 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by matiki Quote
So far I've had two recommend the 17-70 macro, two for the 18-50/2.8 and one recommendation to check out the tamron 28-75... any other thoughts out there?
The Tamron 28-75mm seems like a great lens. But keep in mind 28mm is not wide at all on an APS-C sensor. That may or may not be a problem, depending on your style of shooting.
10-17-2007, 03:48 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by RBellavance Quote
The Tamron 28-75mm seems like a great lens. But keep in mind 28mm is not wide at all on an APS-C sensor. That may or may not be a problem, depending on your style of shooting.
Thanks... I don't think that is as much an issue for my indoor shooting. When I'm outdoors, I love to get close to big things... a wide angle is critical. The 18mm focal length of my kit lens was too long for the fair.
10-17-2007, 04:08 PM   #15
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You mentioned Sigma's 24-60 f2.8 and the 28-70 f2.8..... why not do what I did and get the Sigma 24-70 f2.8? haha
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