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05-20-2011, 08:48 PM   #16
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I have taken my Sigma 17-70mm with me three or four times to China and it will cover most of your shots while touring; so borrow your friend's. The Sigma 10-20mm will work well when you need really wide as Francis mentioned above. I don't see it on your list, but the Pentax 15mm prime is a lens I ended up using more than my 17-70mm last June. The 15mm is so small and light, and is very useful around the small street markets. In warm weather those zooms tend to get heavy, so a prime is nice. I have a Pentax 21mm prime on order and can't wait to try it on my next trip over there.

05-20-2011, 10:39 PM - 1 Like   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by ducdao Quote
Hi guys - I started the thread "Going to Siem Reap - what to bring?" and your suggestions really helped me to take the right equipments with me for the trip so I would like to ask for your help once again

I'm heading to China in a couple weeks with my wife - June 07th 2011 to be exact. I'll be on a tour with about 20 other people. My tour lasts 7 days and 6 night and we will be visiting 4 cities - Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou and Suzhou.

I would like to travel light if possible so by having a look at the equipment that I have listed in my signature, could you please recommend which body and lenses to bring with me?

Many thanks in advance!
Hi
I was in Siem Reap only just last week. Please be aware currently it is their off season and there are not a lot of tourists about because it is unbearingly hot and humid. It is just the beginning of the monsoon months and in June July you will be right in the middle of it so you will be most likely facing a lot of rain.

As far as photography is concerned there is one important thing to look out for. You will be staying in an air conditioned hotel (if you are not don't count on a good night sleep) and when leaving your hotel room in the morning your camera will be instantly covered in dew, and I mean dew. The water will literally run off your camera. I checked this, yes your sensor will also be covered with a good covering of dew. So if you want to start shooting straight away you are in for a lengthy delay until your camera and lens have recovered. In my case this has never been possible in under 30-40 minutes. (My colleague's NIKON D3000 actually failed under this dew attack but recovered later on) My K5 had no problems.

When going to Angkor Wat you will most definitely in my opinion need a wide angle, I have the SIGMA 10-20, because you would want to take pics from close up of those magnificent stone carvings while covering a wide area.

Also, don't count on a clear day in Shanghai. In the four days I was there the sun shone but there was never a clear blue sky and it was always very hazy, so tele shots in those conditions don't really work very well. (China outside Shanghai in the country is a different story.) See attached photo.

Greetings from sunny Melbourne

Last edited by Schraubstock; 07-24-2011 at 11:41 PM.
05-21-2011, 02:58 AM   #18
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Good point about the air conditioning & humidity, Schraubstock--thanks for the heads up! I've been in Guanzhou in August and you're right--the humidity is incredible (and I'm from Baltimore!) I'm planning to wrap a plastic bags around the camera to protect it during the temperature equalization process.
05-22-2011, 05:13 PM   #19
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My dad is in china with my pentax. I packed up my af lenses for him. I'll let you know the results when he gets back with my gear. However I'm guessing the wide range and probably 35mm will be the lens of choice.

05-23-2011, 01:14 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by dadipentak Quote
Good point about the air conditioning & humidity, Schraubstock--thanks for the heads up! I've been in Guanzhou in August and you're right--the humidity is incredible (and I'm from Baltimore!) I'm planning to wrap a plastic bags around the camera to protect it during the temperature equalization process.
Wrapping a plastic bag is not much use. Use an airtight zip lock bag and put the camera in it before you enter air conditioned room and when you leave.
05-23-2011, 02:57 AM   #21
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When I went on tour in China last year, in July, my tour took me through the Three Gorges, which was the tip top of humidity (think the thing said 90%). We were on one of those river boats of theirs which are airconditioned. I didn't do the ziplock stuff and my lens was not WR. I didn't have any problems with dew/moisture/etc. Same thing with the cities. I must say I did get worried at times. One night it was raining pretty hard and I wanted to take some night shots. I was thinking, here's a good WR test. Got my photos, etc... then I remembered my lens is not WR lol. Didn't have a problem in the end, just funny.
05-23-2011, 03:03 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by selar Quote
Wrapping a plastic bag is not much use. Use an airtight zip lock bag and put the camera in it before you enter air conditioned room and when you leave.
Actually, done right, the wrap method works better going from cool environment to hot: a zip-lock traps too much insulating air. Going from a hot to cool environment, OTOH, I want the camera to 'breathe' in order to dissipate any internal condensation asap.
05-23-2011, 03:29 AM   #23
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Unless you are going on a photo assignment that's paying for the trip, I suggest you leave your Pentax gear at home and take a nice snapshot P&S. High humidity and condensation can wreck havoc and there's not much you can do to provide adequate protection. A perfectly adequate weather sealed P&S will cost less than half a good lens.

Other than bragging rights ("Yep, took it with a K-? paired to my fancy DA-??"), why risk ruining your good stuff?

...my 2 cents...

05-23-2011, 03:48 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Michaelina2 Quote
Unless you are going on a photo assignment that's paying for the trip, I suggest you leave your Pentax gear at home and take a nice snapshot P&S. High humidity and condensation can wreck havoc and there's not much you can do to provide adequate protection. A perfectly adequate weather sealed P&S will cost less than half a good lens.

Other than bragging rights ("Yep, took it with a K-? paired to my fancy DA-??"), why risk ruining your good stuff?

...my 2 cents...
Thanks for your suggestion but I for one think the equipment must be well used and not be pampered. A great capture is priceless and good gear help me achieve that.

No, it's not about bragging, in contrary I find my Pentax gear pretty humble compared to the Leica and Canikon folks. It's only a matter of using the right equipment at the right time to achieve best quality possible.
05-23-2011, 03:57 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by Michaelina2 Quote
Unless you are going on a photo assignment that's paying for the trip, I suggest you leave your Pentax gear at home and take a nice snapshot P&S. High humidity and condensation can wreck havoc and there's not much you can do to provide adequate protection. A perfectly adequate weather sealed P&S will cost less than half a good lens.

Other than bragging rights ("Yep, took it with a K-? paired to my fancy DA-??"), why risk ruining your good stuff?

...my 2 cents...
What's the point of owning a decent camera if we leave it at home when we travel? Sorry but I completely disagree, the camera is a tool not an end in itself, the result (pictures) is more important than the tool (camera).
05-23-2011, 04:03 AM   #26
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Gents,

All reviewing all your suggestions, here is what I think that I will bring with me to China:

1) K200D: because it's the lightest body that I have and weather sealed
2) Wide angle: DA14, for low light situation that my Sigma 10-20 can't handle
3) Sigma 10-20
4) Sigma 17-70
5) DA35 for macro, although the Sigma 17-70 can achieve some great macro shots too
6) K50/f1.4 for low light situations
7) Lots of Eneloops, charger and SD cards
8) Nikon SB-28 speedlight as it's light and reliable
9) Silica gels and zipploc bags

The Sigma 10-20 and 17-70 will probably spend 80% on the body but we will see
Probably take my K20D as a backup body but leave it in the hotel to travel light.
05-23-2011, 04:04 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
What's the point of owning a decent camera if we leave it at home when we travel? Sorry but I completely disagree, the camera is a tool not an end in itself, the result (pictures) is more important than the tool (camera).
+1 well said.
05-23-2011, 04:31 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Michaelina2 Quote
Unless you are going on a photo assignment that's paying for the trip, I suggest you leave your Pentax gear at home and take a nice snapshot P&S. High humidity and condensation can wreck havoc and there's not much you can do to provide adequate protection. A perfectly adequate weather sealed P&S will cost less than half a good lens.

Other than bragging rights ("Yep, took it with a K-? paired to my fancy DA-??"), why risk ruining your good stuff?

...my 2 cents...
Sorry, doesn't make any sense to me. Why buy a good camera like the K5 and good glass in the first place. If you want to keep your camera in an absolutely pristine state perhaps you should always leave it at home. Come to think, why not just buy postcards, this way you don't do any damage. (Not even to your P&S)

I have been on photo shoots in the most diabolical locations, temperatures of 35-40C in both directions, humidity so high you could drink the air, snow, ice, rain, hail, wind dust you name it and my PENTAX cams and lenses including non PENTAX glass have come out the other end without any major sings of wear. In fact I sold my K7 body here in the market place only recently and the buyer e-mailed me thanking me for selling him such a well looked after body.

Just use your Photo gear with a bit of respect, use your brain when on location and shoot away.

To leave your cam home just because a bit of dew may befall it is absurd, never heard anything like it.

Your last "bragging rights" paragraph really bothers me.

Greetings from sunny Melbourne

(I am really quite a nice guy, if I had any friends they could confirm this)
05-23-2011, 05:21 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
What's the point of owning a decent camera if we leave it at home when we travel? Sorry but I completely disagree, the camera is a tool not an end in itself, the result (pictures) is more important than the tool (camera).
An emphatic +1! I regard this as a once-in-a-lifetime photographic opportunity.
05-23-2011, 05:45 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by ducdao Quote
...here is what I think that I will bring with me to China:

K200D: because it's the lightest body that I have... (etc...)
Sounds like a plan... Enjoy your trip...

QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
What's the point of owning a decent camera if we leave it at home when we travel? Sorry but I completely disagree...
QuoteOriginally posted by Schraubstock Quote
Sorry, doesn't make any sense to me. Why buy a good camera like the K5... (Er, not taking a K-5... )
Psssst, gotcha... You guys are way too serious...

If he were me, I'd be inclined to take a K-5 and DA*55/1.4 with a stash of fully charged batteries and a handfull of SD cards. That's all...
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