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08-07-2011, 04:35 PM   #16
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after struggling with decisions about lenses, buying and selling around i came out to a conclusion: Its not the length but a purpose you need to decide on.

ofc there are limitations with length but i had to decide to what i need to shoot with and then got lenses that fits my needs, for example i love shooting portraits and anybody would recommend 50-70mm for it, i do it with 135/2.8 old sears manual lens and i have few others that many ppl would say they are more suitable for it but 135mm works for me best, maybe length is little long but portraits are as i want them to be, for example i just bought 43mm and its a awe full length ( like 50mm its useless) but i see i can get used to the length but for purpose i do need it, serves ( or will be) what i want many ppl will ask whats the purpose, and i just came to conclusion that they do know what are the talking about :P

08-07-2011, 05:23 PM   #17
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Well, fafo, I'm not sure what you're saying. I already stated why I need something in the specific range. I don't do many portrait shots, vary rarely in fact do I shoot people. This birthday shoot I did was for a family member of a 1 year old boy. His first. I was happy with how it came out. The parents just got the finished product today so I have no idea of their thoughts. But if there is a next time, I want to be better prepared. I got the email about three hours before the shoot, them asking me if I would do it.
In September, I have a family function coming up, lots of people in different situations, all mingling with other family. My sister and her husband have this "party" every year and they rent a blowup slide for the kids to play on. In this situation, I use my 70-300mm for this, since I've been official photographer, starting 3 years ago. But this year, I'd like to get in closer without the usual crop that occurs with the big lens. I have to avoid the water splashes, at all costs. Some lens that would get me closer but not too close.
08-07-2011, 06:36 PM   #18
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DA*50-135/2.8 or DA60-250/4

50-135 maybe lil short ( depends how far you wanna stay) but its very compact and light

60-250 should be suitable and i wouldn't go with sigma to save 200 bucks in same tele range

and fixed lens wont do the job i think

and 150$ ? hmmm i think you will get what you paid for and ive went thru many cheap lenses and i kept none only one cheap one i use is M135/28 and its only till i get 60-250 in my hands ( i think) even kit lenses i dont use anymore cause i dont like outcome, maybe there are exceptions but you gotta pay for good lenses

also i was looking at photozone at 18-135 and 18-200 to get something universal to walk arround with, and after comparing those lenses i decided to buy fixed 43 for pentax and leave what i have for canon, because i dont wanted to downgrade with quality. plus latelly i wanted to find reason to keep my DA55-300 so i took it for a weekend and ive shot only at 55mm then next week i went with HSM17-50/2.8 and shot only at 50mm and i need no degree to tell you how bad is DAL55-300 plus ive used at least 10-12 lenses that ive sold, most M and A ( inexpensive used) and didnt like it ( in comparing to what i have) at all

Last edited by fafo13; 08-07-2011 at 06:47 PM.
08-07-2011, 06:56 PM   #19
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I have, as I said before, a 70-300mm Sigma AF Macro. I have a 100-500mm Samyang, I do not need another zoom lens, in long length. I have almost a month to find the lens I need, so I'll just keep looking.

08-07-2011, 08:22 PM   #20
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photolady,

Looking at your inventory and the situation that you want to shoot in, I could think of 3 lenses that might do for you under budget. The most versatile would be DA 50-200/4.0-5.6, it's AF, has long reach to stay far enough away and still be close. Downside of this lens is it's mostly indifferent IQ, except in the centre.

Next would be Pentax A 35-105/3.5 zoom lens, which is very highly rated by the forum members (I am a Tamron nut and opted for SP65A, 35-105/2.8), and it covers near wide to near tele focal range, overlapping and covering over the gap in your current inventory.

Finally, a Jupiter 37a 135/3.5 m42 lens. This is a Soviet copy of Zeiss Sonnar lens formula and it is very sharp, with pleasing colours - it has what some would describe as a 3D look to the image. If you are looking for a 135mm lens I would highly recommend this. I believe all of the above lenses are available for under your budget of 150.00, with the Jupiter 37A being the least expensive of them all.

Hope this helps,
08-09-2011, 05:56 AM   #21
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excanonfd, Funny you should mention the 35-105 because I found a Tokina in the same focal length for less than $50. I'm going to get this if it doesn't disappear on me before the first. I checked reviews on it here.
08-09-2011, 10:13 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by photolady Quote
excanonfd, Funny you should mention the 35-105 because I found a Tokina in the same focal length for less than $50. I'm going to get this if it doesn't disappear on me before the first. I checked reviews on it here.
Yes, I think you should be looking for a 35-105, 35-135, 28-105/135 zoom lenses of good quality legacy lenses. Coupled with your K-x's high ISO capability, shooting at maximum apertures of f3.5~4.5 shouldn't pose too much of a challenge even as evening turns to night.

Thanks,
08-09-2011, 10:43 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by excanonfd Quote
Yes, I think you should be looking for a 35-105, 35-135, 28-105/135 zoom lenses of good quality legacy lenses.
I have (but don't much use) a Tokina RMC 35-135/3.5-4.5 in NI mount (modded for PK) with OK IQ, but the one-touch action is just too loose, sliding all over the place. I have (and MUCH use) a Sears Tele-Auto (Tokina) 55-135/3.5 in M42 mount -- built like a tank, with 3-ring control that's almost as solid and silky as a Takumar or Tomioka, with superb IQ. It's my favourite 'portrait' zoom. (At least I think it's Tokina, but maybe is *IS* Tomioka!)

Each of those cost under US$10. If I didn't sweat the SR, I'd probably look for more M42 short zooms with fixed maximum apertures. A zoom with a fixed max of f/4 or f/4.5 is likely better than a f/3.5-4.5 floater. (Hmmm, another US$10 wonder, a Tokina SD 35-200/3.5-5.6, should arrive any day now. I'll see if it fits the pattern.)

08-09-2011, 11:32 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
the one-touch action is just too loose, sliding all over the place
What is one touch action mean? I'm not familiar with that.

The Tokina I'm looking at is also macro. Is yours, RioRico?

I checked KEH for their screw mounts but didn't find anything in the length I was wanting. Lots of long lengths, but no in betweens. And others, mostly 50mm and I already have a one of those.
In manual there is a Sigma 35-135mm. Not sure about that. The last Sigma I got from KEH had fungus and it did affect photos.
08-10-2011, 01:32 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by photolady Quote
I have the following lenses; M 28-80mm; AF 18-55mm, two long zooms; AF 70-300mm and M 100-500mm, plus one M 50mm. What would be a good go between from the 28-80mm to the 70-300mm? I was thinking a long prime, but I need your input to help me decide. Bear in mind, I'm on a fixed income so price should be not more than $150.

Thanks in Advance.
I'll start in the other end and give some advice on good lenses on a budget.
You are not that specific on what actuall lenses you have. There are for example a mountain of different 50's, and zoom lenses in these ranges. And quality can differ a lot.

The SMC Pentax-M 50mm f1.7 and the SMC Pentax 55mm f1.8 are probably the most quality for the least money when it comes to 50mm options. Much cheaper than the f1.4 versions. Pictures from the 50/1.7 and 55/1.8 also comes out rather different, the 1.7 generally sharper, and the 1.8 warmer in colors. You should be able to get either of them for about 50USD or less.

The standard set of primes before zoom lenses took over was a 28mm, a 50mm and a 135mm, so they were sold in great numbers and hence there are inexpensive options for them all. Today on a APS-C DSLR the crop factor turns the 28mm into a normal lens, the 50mm into a portrait lens, and the 135mm into a 200mm proxy, which was also a standard prime focal length back then, and usefull for example for indoor sports, outdoor portraits, domestic or zoo animals etc etc.
For examples of 135mm lenses (and shots with them), see the 135mm lens club. On your budget, the best K mount Pentax 135mm would be the SMC Pentax-M 135mm f3.5, followed by the SMC Pentax 135mm f3.5 (these are very different optics). The SMC Pentax 135mm f2.5 is better than both these, but is typically out of reach of your budget. Though with a bit of patience you might find it (I got mine for about 150 USD a couple of years ago, but I was lucky...and patient). There are numerous non-Pentax 135mm. Look at the 135mm club to get an idea of what is good or bad. The Sears "macro" version you have is a lemon, unless you want soft images as a special effect. Most 135mm lenses are way sharper than that.
Are you comfortable with using screw mount lenses with an adapter? That would add many bargain options. You may also run into the Takumar bayonet 135mm f2.5. Allthough it has a similar optical solution as severall other Pentax 135mm lenses, it has a simpler coating and therefore less contrast and is prone to flare, but with a good lens hood you can get good results anyway. The Takumar bayonet should go for less than 50USD (I payed about 20USD for mine), but some sellers try to give the impression that is is a SMC Pentax 135mm f2.5 they are selling and asks for 100-150USD. Just ignore them.

The SMC Pentax 28mm f3.5 is one of the sharpest lenses Pentax made, and should be just within reach for your budget. A fantastic landscape lens. The SMC Pentax-M 28mm f2.8 and f3.5 (completely different optics than the non-M version) are not as good, but also much cheaper, and for the price good options. Otherwise there are an endless number of different 28mm lenses in K mount or screw mount, both lemons and gems.

The SMC Pentax-A 35-105mm f4 that someone mentions is indeed a very good zoom, better than most, works well for portraits, and has constant max apperture. Should go for about 150USD.
But the best hidden secret among Pentax zoom lenses is the SMC Pentax-FA 28-70mm f4 (constant f4). It was sold as a slightly more expensive alternative to the cheap kit zooms on bodies like the Pentax MZ5 and similar. It turned out however that it was one of Pentax best designs ever in this range. People says it performs comparable to the way more expensive SMC Pentax-FA* 28-70/2.8. It is built very plasticaly, but is an optical gem, a truly great lens, but it yet go for very little, 100USD perhaps.

Another cheaply available prime option is the 200mm lenses. Pentax best bargain is probably the SMC Pentax-M 200mm f4, while the non-M version is a simpler optical solution that is not entirely up to the M version. Also here there are numerous non-Pentax K mount alternatives as the 200mm was probably the fourth most common focal length (after the 28+50+135).

If you go longer than 200mm you most likely end up outside your budget. A decent 400mm that is just inside your budget is the Tokina 400mm f5.6, but it has less contrast than the Pentax 400mm f5.6.
08-10-2011, 01:36 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by photolady Quote
What is one touch action mean? I'm not familiar with that.

The Tokina I'm looking at is also macro. Is yours, RioRico?

I checked KEH for their screw mounts but didn't find anything in the length I was wanting. Lots of long lengths, but no in betweens. And others, mostly 50mm and I already have a one of those.
In manual there is a Sigma 35-135mm. Not sure about that. The last Sigma I got from KEH had fungus and it did affect photos.
One touch action is when the zoom and focus is combined into one single controle ring. You turn it to focus, and push it forward and backward to zoom. With some training this is a very fast way to work. Best Pentax examples of this is the SMC Pentax-M 80-200mm f4.5 and the SMC Pentax-A 70-210 f4 lenses. What RioRico refers to is that these rings sometimes with age go very loose, with the effect that if you tilt the camera forward, the lens will from its own weight zoom out to its maxima extension.
08-10-2011, 02:39 AM   #27
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I always called that one touch, push pull and know the focus is on the barrel. My Samyang is that way so is the J.C. Penny 28-80mm, if that's what you mean.

The 50mm is a Ricoh. The 70-300mm is a Sigma, non DG. And the 18-55mm is Pentax, which is also the second version, DA L ll.

I know the Sears lens is a piece of crap and it's nothing like the one I had in '98 or earlier. I can't remember exactly when I bought it but I was still in college and asked my photography professor about it. He said is was normally used for portraits. But it was better than this one i have. I took a lot of good photos with it.
And I'm not looking for something in the 200mm range right now. I was thinking portraits, kids birthdays, etc, so 200mm would be a bit too much lens. Though faster, would be nice. The Sigma and the Samyang are both slow lenses with f on the Sigma 6.3. and the Samyang f7.1. But the Sigma's widest is f4.6.

And prices for a 50mm f1.4 or f1.7 is more than i can pay right now. They are not cheap here in the USA.
08-10-2011, 03:02 AM   #28
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A fast look at ebay reveled several M50/1.7 "buy it now" within your price range. The f1.4 is a different deal that goes for more. But as you already have a Ricoh 50mm this is probably not your first target. Most Ricoh 50's I've seen has been fine.

You weren't very specific so I focused on good lenses that can be had for low prices. A sheap lens is no help for your photo development if it is crap.
08-10-2011, 03:33 AM   #29
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I guess I didn't make myself clear enough for you to understand. The lens I buy will be used for a family function. It has to be more than a 50mm. As I already have the Ricoh, and the 18-55mm I wanted something in the range of more length but not real long length. That's why I mentioned either 135 or 105. I could pull the 70-300 down to 100 and use it that way if I have to, as far as that goes it also has 135mm. But I've only used this lens at 70 and 300mm so I don't know the IQ on the other settings.
08-10-2011, 03:49 AM   #30
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Pentax-F 35-135mm F3.5-4.5 Reviews - F Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Complete Lens Database

This lens is underrated. It can be a little hard to find however.
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