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07-31-2011, 03:45 PM   #1
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31 lmt or 35 marco and UWA

Hi all, newbi here, have K5 as my first Dslr, with the kit 18-55 as it was all I could afford at the time.

Pretty new to it all, but was not very impressed with IQ I was getting so I tried adjusting for the back focusing, but still kinda soft results, untill I found a lesson on sharpening with PS that I find helps alot.
Still it would be nice for sharper images to start with.

Reading these forums I wonder if I just got a bad copy of the 18-55 ,,, hard for me to know, so I started saving for a better lens.

I paint for fun, just love the way light plays with things. I got the camera as a way to capture those scenes I find exciting and want to paint later on, but don't always have time to sit and sketch.

So color rendition is high on my lens need list.
The K5's ISO performance makes aperture speed negotiable, tho being able to play with bokkeh may be fun.
I shoot mostly landscape and street right now but light and shadow on anything attracts me.
I.E. Everything and anything is a possible subject.

So next week I'll finally have enough money for the 31mm limited, yeah!!!
I figured why not start with one of the best.

Been setting my zoom on that focal length my last two outings and find it works 90% of the time for what I see. The other 8% is wider.
And with the recent buy out happening soon I figured I should grab the 31mm before the prices go up.
It will be at least another year before I can afford any more camera equipment.

Problem is that B & H are out of stock, got the K5 from them and am quite happy with their service.

Do you think I should get on the waiting list for one from B & H, or try Adorama which have it in stock. Has anyone dealt with them, are they OK?

Or should I go for the Da 35mm/2.8 marco, close enough in focal length to the 31 with close focusing; and either the Sigma 10-20 , Tammy 10-24, or Da 15mm as I think I will eventually want to go wider.

Thanks in advance for any input and I apologize for taking so long to get to the point.

07-31-2011, 03:53 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by dannyial Quote

Problem is that B & H are out of stock, got the K5 from them and am quite happy with their service.

Do you think I should get on the waiting list for one from B & H, or try Adorama which have it in stock. Has anyone dealt with them, are they OK?

Or should I go for the Da 35mm/2.8 marco, close enough in focal length to the 31 with close focusing; and either the Sigma 10-20 , Tammy 10-24, or Da 15mm as I think I will eventually want to go wider.

Thanks in advance for any input and I apologize for taking so long to get to the point.
Adorama are excellent, I've bought a couple of lenses from them. I actually prefer them to B&H due to their 30 day return policy.

I would buy the FA31. The FA31 has gorgeous colours (FA limiteds are all terrific for this) and it is sharp sharp. 1 1/3 stops is a signfiicant speed advantage for the FA31. The smooth bokeh on the FA31 is unbeaten by any Pentax lens, it's certainly much nicer than the DA35.

As for the wide option, well there's tons of choice. I have the Pentax 12-24 & the DA15 and far prefer using the DA15 due to it's size/weight and flare resistance.
07-31-2011, 04:04 PM   #3
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+1 with twitch. Go for the FA31mm f1.8 Ltd. This is a fabulous lens and you will not regret it. The lens IQ is outstanding and it is a real pleasure to use this 'gem'. Worth every $.

I used both B&H and Adorama, and both are very well-respected stores. They can be highly recommended and I will use them again.

Hope that the comment will help.
07-31-2011, 04:15 PM   #4
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Congratulations! Especially on saving up for a 31. The 31 is everything everyone has indicated and more. One aspect of the kit lens is its ability to provide a wide range of focal lengths so that you can adjust to the scene and determine what your likes and dislikes are. After receiving the 31 you might send the kit lens in for servicing given that its probably within the 1 year warranty period.

Where to acquire the 31 - B & H, or Adorama, I have used both and each have provided great service. You can not go wrong with either.

On the topic of going wider, I would suggest you try your hand at stitching. You really do not need a wide angle lens with this technique. This is a way to combine a number of images together resulting in a larger image. It is quite easy, and you can use any lens.




Last edited by interested_observer; 07-31-2011 at 04:25 PM.
07-31-2011, 04:35 PM   #5
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Thanks for the help folks looks like I'll give Adorama I try and get the 31 while i can.... had to sell some guitars to get here but I have plenty of others...

Now to hope for Wednesday to hurry up and get here...lol
08-01-2011, 02:39 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by dannyial Quote
Thanks for the help folks looks like I'll give Adorama I try and get the 31 while i can....
If you need any after-sales support I'm only a email away! Helen@adorama.com

PS Thanks for all the great feedback for Adorama - I'll be sure to pass it on to all the guys & girls in sales, CS & shipping!

Last edited by Helen Oster; 08-01-2011 at 02:54 AM.
08-01-2011, 02:57 AM   #7
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If I was you I would go for the FA31 and DA15 for the wide, that would be a killer two lens combo with the some of the best IQ and rendering you can get not mention quite compact and discreet!
08-01-2011, 04:35 AM   #8
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I picked the DA35 because of the macro Later I will add the FA43 Together they are cheaper than the FA31.. FA31 is still magical

08-01-2011, 04:42 AM   #9
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i also vote for FA31....
08-01-2011, 10:02 AM   #10
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+1 for the 31

I had both for a while and finally decided to sell the DA 35. Excellent lens, but I liked the extra speed of the FA 31 and the "pixie dust" the DA 35 does not show.
08-01-2011, 10:16 AM   #11
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The FA 31mm f/1.8 and DA 35mm f/2.8 are not comparable price-wise. The FA 31mm f/1.8 is about twice as much.

I pondered these two lenses as well and went with the DA 35 f/2.8 for its versatility and cost savings. I ended up getting a DA 55-300mm at the same time. Both lenses were about the same price as a single FA 31mm f/1.8.

If you just have the kit I suggest doing what I did. Getting a DA 55-300mm will give you coverage from 18-300mm. The DA 35 f/2.8 is a pretty good first prime, too.

Last edited by krebsy75; 08-01-2011 at 10:25 AM.
08-01-2011, 10:27 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by dannyial Quote
Hi all, newbi here, have K5 as my first Dslr, with the kit 18-55 as it was all I could afford at the time.
....

Thanks in advance for any input and I apologize for taking so long to get to the point.
The Pentax lenses you mention are simply outstanding. I haven't used them much on the K5 yet but I'm getting to them (the 31 is on the camera right now). If you have your heart set on the 31, then get it. You won't be happy until you do. That was my experience a few years ago anyway. You might want to look into a Used one however unless you are Really concerned about getting a 'bad' copy (I guess they do exist just like anything else).

The argument that you can also pick up the 35 and the 15 for (about) the same money also would carry a lot of weight. I would be asking myself though how much I was going to use the 15 (and I Do have one). Many people make the mistake of thinking you need an ultra wide angle lens for landscapes but it simply isn't true. The 15 Will do it but it isn't required.

The 35 is also a great lens. Some will tell you that the macro capability is useless. Well, BS. I guess if you're trying to sneak up on a nervous bug for a 1:1 shot, then yes, it may be but otherwise, no.

I really don't think you can go wrong with any of them but were I in your place (and I was once), I would start with the FA31.

Pentax FA 31mm Limited - a set on Flickr

Pentax DA35mm Limited - a set on Flickr

Pentax DA15mm Limited - a set on Flickr

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