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05-12-2011, 04:41 AM   #1
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Should I buy a 21 or a 15??

I have used a K-R with sigma 30 1.4 for 4 months now and I am very happy with the sigma. Now I am coming across a 2nd hand 21mm at a reasonable price and I am looking to expend my lense collection...... should I buy the 21mm or should I save more for a brand new 15mm?? I am into pentax 'cause I love the DA & FA limited lenses and I am intend to do a lot of street photography with them

05-12-2011, 04:55 AM   #2
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Looks like you'll at some point get the two of them
If the 21 is reasonably price and in good condition it's a good opportunity..the 15mm won't dissapear. But you'll have to consider if you want to have soon the wider lens or the 21 lens...
The 21 may not be wide enough for some uses.
05-12-2011, 05:19 AM   #3
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Had the same dilemma and ended up going for the DA15LTD, so thats my pick. The wider the better, and you just cant ignore that great flare resistance!
05-12-2011, 05:27 AM   #4
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If you have the 30mm, the 15mm would be a better pair with it than the 21mm.

05-12-2011, 06:24 AM   #5
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I have the 21 so I can vouch for it (gladly) but I too think if you already have a 30 you should pass on the 21 and get the 15. Or sell the 30, and get both the 21 AND 15 (two better lenses by all accounts).
05-12-2011, 06:36 AM   #6
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Buy one and you will want the other. I'll go further and say that for any Limited. Buy one and you will want them all.
05-12-2011, 06:42 AM   #7
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I can't comment on the quality of these specific lenses. I *can* say that 15mm and 21mm are *quite* different focal lengths, so it couldn't hurt to have both, eh? But I have a manual Tokina 21 that doesn't see nearly as much use as do a zoom at 18 or a 24 prime. If money is an issue, I'd recommend the 15mm. It's easier to take two steps forward with a 15 to get a 21's AOV, than it is to step back with a 21, especially if cliffs are nearby.
05-12-2011, 07:44 AM   #8
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Thanks. It seems like the 15 is more of a logical choice.... but 21 is US$160 cheaper. Any one has both 15 & 21 but ended up leaving 21 in the storage? The reason to purchase 21 is that Sigma 30 is a bit to big & heavy to carry in my bag for everyday use..... so 15/21/40/43 all seems to have the size/weight that i am after & i am open for suggestion.

05-12-2011, 08:01 AM   #9
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Thanks everyone....... Actually I am very happy now. I just scan through pixel peeper and I think 21mm is not wide enough for my taste. You guys saved me from wasting unnecessary time & energy in the future to decide whether to keep/sell the 21mm.
05-12-2011, 09:45 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Artifarty Quote
Thanks. It seems like the 15 is more of a logical choice.... but 21 is US$160 cheaper. Any one has both 15 & 21 but ended up leaving 21 in the storage? The reason to purchase 21 is that Sigma 30 is a bit to big & heavy to carry in my bag for everyday use..... so 15/21/40/43 all seems to have the size/weight that i am after & i am open for suggestion.
My experiences:

(I don't have the 21 but I often use the kit lens as my 21mm).

1) DA 15 is crazy sharp and it's *possible* to crop to about 20mm without losing too much of your image size.

2) If you plan on taking wide-shots with people in them, the 21mm is much better suited to the task.

3) The 15 is best used for dramatic perspective, not "getting it all in". You can get it all in with any foal lengths if you move back far enough.

So yeah, the 15 is a great lens, but pretty special purpose. The 21 is great for wider shots with people ("environmental portraits / landscapes"), the 15 is great for drama / tight quarters ("perspective/pure landscape"). I personally think it's harder to take a good shot with the 15, but it's also more fun.

The main reason I got the 15 first? The kit lens could fill in as my 21 for now .
05-13-2011, 12:01 AM   #11
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I have both, and use the 21 a lot. When I travel it's generally with the 15, 21, 40 and 70, and sometimes the 35 Macro as well. For general travel shots, and most of the time it seems, the 21 is on the camera. Wider is nice, but not when there is a whole lot of boring sky for example.

I really like the 21.
05-13-2011, 05:07 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Artifarty Quote
The reason to purchase 21 is that Sigma 30 is a bit to big & heavy to carry in my bag for everyday use
Then sell the 30 and get both, seems like a no-brainer! The best lens is the one you carry with you!

The size of the 21 makes it an amazingly small travel lens.
05-13-2011, 05:22 AM   #13
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bdery..... I am planning to bring my gear to work and sigma 30 is a bit too big for weekday use. When I am with kids in the weekend, sigma 30 is a treat to use.
05-13-2011, 09:44 AM   #14
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If I'm understanding correctly why you want the lens and how you plan to use it, I'd go with the DA 21 (I own both...and love both). Reason: If you want something to carry while you don't carry the Sig 30, the 21 is more versatile. It is my standard lens when I'm travelling in cities.

However, if you want something to carry with the Sig 30, I think the 21 is close enough to the 30 to warrant getting the 15 instead.

With the two lenses you're considering I'd skip any discussions of quality as they are both top-notch. I'd go with what's going to be in your bag more often.
05-13-2011, 09:46 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
I can't comment on the quality of these specific lenses. I *can* say that 15mm and 21mm are *quite* different focal lengths, so it couldn't hurt to have both, eh? But I have a manual Tokina 21 that doesn't see nearly as much use as do a zoom at 18 or a 24 prime. If money is an issue, I'd recommend the 15mm. It's easier to take two steps forward with a 15 to get a 21's AOV, than it is to step back with a 21, especially if cliffs are nearby.
... every year up at the Grand Canyon, there are always tourists out taking pictures. Either posing (and being asked to back up), or taking a picture and backing up or stepping forward - its that last step can bring unexpected consequences... Unfortunately, they always seem to loose at least one tourist a year - to that last step....- note - not picking on any nationality, this just appeared as the latest occurrence.

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