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06-12-2011, 09:47 AM   #1
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Choice of lense

Hi,

I'm looking for a new lense, which will my primary lense, but I have a lot of conditions:ugh::
  • I have no huge budget
  • I want it to be versatile (landscape to portrait)
  • It has to be lightweight, will spend a lot of time in my backpack so it has to be sturdy also. Probably the only lense on a biking trip from Prague to Ghent.
  • Prime > zoom (I like primes more than zooms cause it's more challenging in a way and the IQ is mostly better, I know this makes my versatility condition difficult)

Tzadaam

I took a look at these already
Sigma 17-70
Pentax 35mm 2,4 and 2,8
Pentax 40mm
Pentax 21mm
Pentax 50mm 1,4

I can't decide! I need experienced people to help me out a bit. If you were looking for a lense with the conditions above which one would you pick (from the above or others).

Thanks in advance,

Kind regards

06-12-2011, 09:56 AM   #2
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Posts: 468
I have the 35mm 2.4 and I think it will suit you perfectly. 35mm is wide enough to take landscapes with and as a "normal" lens its easy to stitch together panoramic shots with it. The lens is also great for portraiture by zooming with your feet and it can focus very near the subject.

Its also very cheap and very lightweight. I think it ticks all the boxes
06-12-2011, 10:58 AM   #3
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If I were to go on such a trip, IMHO an all in one is what I would take; but that’s me. It isn’t necessarily “lightweight” or compact but I’d probably take my DA 18-250 alone. I’ve done bike trips with it on my K-x in a back pack and didn’t really bother me…albeit not 470-mile trip like you’re planning. (BTW: There is a Tamron version on the market place right now.)

I cannot give a user comment on the DAL 35mm 2.4 as I do not have one…yet! But it seems to meet your requirements (Size, Cost, and Prime) and most reviews/ user comments I’ve come across are positive.

Have you considered the 18-55mm WR? It may not rival primes but it produces fairly decent IQ and lightweight (to me) with focal range suitable for landscape and portraiture plus the benefit of WR. That in addition to your 40mm f2.8 and K5 (both listed on your profile) would be a good “kit” for such trip, IMHO.

Cheers!
06-12-2011, 11:02 AM   #4
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Location: London
Posts: 35
QuoteOriginally posted by Graisin Quote
  • I have no huge budget
  • I want it to be versatile (landscape to portrait)
  • It has to be lightweight, will spend a lot of time in my backpack so it has to be sturdy also. Probably the only lense on a biking trip from Prague to Ghent.
  • Prime > zoom (I like primes more than zooms cause it's more challenging in a way and the IQ is mostly better, I know this makes my versatility condition difficult)

I took a look at these already
Sigma 17-70
Pentax 35mm 2,4 and 2,8
Pentax 40mm
Pentax 21mm
Pentax 50mm 1,4
Sigma 30mm f1.4. Its f1.4 is good enough for casual portraits. It's 45mm equivalent which is more normal than the 35mm so better for landscape. The only thing that it can't do is macro and wide angle (by nature, a normal lens is not a wide angle lens).

I would suggest you to sell the 35mm f2.4 and/or the 35mm 2.8 and/or the 40mm (presumably Ltd?). You only need 1 lens in those 3. And use the cash to buy a longer portrait lens like 85mm or 70mm or even Tamron 90mm macro which can also serve as a very good portrait lens.

And to be 100% honest. You DO NOT need another lens. The 17-70 is good enough for landscape and portrait with very good IQ.

06-12-2011, 11:26 AM   #5
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I would say your best bet would be the DA 40 2.8.

It's just long enough for portraits (not head and shoulders, but you can do wider portraits), it's sharp as hell and therefore great for landscapes, and it's tiny as can be. If you throw the DA 40 on your camera, you can put that in your bag and have something nice and light for your trip.

If you don't have a camera body yet, consider the KX or KR, as they are great with low light and rather compact for an SLR, too.

Of the lenses you listed I have owned the 50 and the 40, and I have tried the DA L 2.4.

I would suggest that the DA 21 would be great for landscapes, but less useful for portraits. It's more specialized than the 40.

The 50 is better for portraits specifically, but had it's shortcomings and might not be as well-suited for landscapes due to poorer corner sharpness and flare rejection.

The DA 35's are good lenses, but honestly not my favourite focal lengths. The macro function of the 2.8 never really interested me, but that lens is very good. The DA L 35 is also a very good lens, but significantly larger than the 40 (if you have a hood attached to it), so I would think that the ultra-compact DA 40 would be your friend on a bike trip.

The sigma 17-70 would be a really great lens, but I can understand why you would not want to lug a bulky zoom on a bike trip like that. The DA LTDs are *made* for the kind of stuff you want to do... and the DA 40 is very inexpensive for what it is, too!
06-12-2011, 11:41 AM   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Ghent
Posts: 33
Original Poster
@testdasi: i don't have any of the lenses i listed - I wish i had

@all: thank you very much for your comments. things are getting clearer.
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