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08-27-2011, 11:58 AM   #1
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Pentax 50-135 vs Tamron 70-200 + 28-75

Hey Guys,

I would like to get your thought and experience on this. In order to do portraiture in studio and outside nature type of thing and also be able to utilize the lens for walk around and in terms of IQ, what do you guys recommend?

should I go with Pentax 50-135 ( already have sigma 17-70 )

or should I get Tamron 28-75 for walk around and portrait ( limited to 75 ) and 70-200 for longer focal length?

Thanks,

Derek


Last edited by dr_romix; 08-27-2011 at 03:04 PM.
08-27-2011, 12:08 PM   #2
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I'd go with the latter option. IMO, the Pentax is neither wide enough nor long enough, so it really frustrates me compared to a 70-200mm.
08-27-2011, 12:41 PM   #3
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My favourite people/portrait zoom is an old M42 Sears-Tokina 55-135/3.5 on either APS-C or 135/FF. I find that an excellent range for studio work. But it is NOT among my K20D's walkaround lenses, because as Adam said, that range is too long on one end and too short on the other. My main walkaround lens is the DA18-250; it's just so flexible! But it's not a portrait lens. Since you already have a 17-70, adding the 70-200 makes sense as a two-lens walkaround kit, or for two different portraiture styles. You may need to do some bullet-biting: both the 70-200 and the 50-135! Hay, it's only money...
08-27-2011, 12:46 PM   #4
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Thank you guys.. I really found 75mm f.2.8 on Tamron to be helpful ( playing with my friend's lens ) especially for it's2.8 bokah which I'm missing with my sigma 17-70 f.4.0 at its largest focal length. so I was thinking of keeping Sigma since it's a macro lens and buy those 2 tamrons? what do you guys think?

08-27-2011, 01:22 PM   #5
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Remember guys, the 50-135 is equivalent to the film 70-200 focal length.

I used to have the Tamron 18-250, before i gave it to my nephew, and the best pictures i sold from that lens were always equal to/or less than 135mm fl. When the 50-135 came out, i bought it immediately and have never regretted it.

The 50-135 is like a collection of primes, so sharp. Plus that long hood enhances the IQ by shielding the lens from extraneous light and rain. I've done head shots with it for actors and its splendid for portraits, indoors and out. great bokeh and creamy color.

The problem i see with the 60-250 and 70-200 lens is the weight;
a. the 60-250 is only an f4 but weighs 1120gm
b. a 70-200 f2.8 weighs 2.5 lbs, roughly the same as (a) above
b. the 50-135 is an f2.8 and weighs only 765gm, a big difference between this lens and the previous two.

You won't want to be using the 60-250 or a 70-200 for portraits for any length of time because of its weight and size.

I have the Tamron 28-75 but i wish i had a 17-70 lens like you do, nicely complements the 50-135 with the overlap.

So use your 50-135 for your portraits and your 17-70 for walk around photos. If you need to go long for, buy a much cheaper 55-300, thats what i plan on doing.

Last edited by philbaum; 08-27-2011 at 01:28 PM.
08-27-2011, 02:17 PM   #6
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dr_romix,
I have all 3 lenses. I would buy the 2 Tamrons that you mentioned. I would use the Sigma 17-70 for street photography and general photography and with a tele zoom like the Pentax DA 55-300 for vacations (sorry that's my LBA speaking ). The Tamrons I would use for weddings and special events like Comic con, model shoots or available light/ lower light situations.
08-27-2011, 02:45 PM   #7
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The choice for me is sophistication, small package, nice balance Vs tank. If you ever go fo a bigger lens, you will have no place to carry a 70-200 unless your are built like a Greek god. The 50 -135 is built for the pentax APC, the 70 - 200 is designed for a canon/nikon FF.

I use my 50-135 for events, people and a lot of landscapes. I use other lenses for wildlife.

I have used my sigma 17-70 a lot as it is so convenient and not bad, but to bring my photography the next step, I had to hide it and replace it with Pentax primes

If you want reach consider a K5 60 - 250 pentax combo. You don't need big apertures with a K5. Nice thing about pentax is the light and compact size.
08-27-2011, 04:15 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bob from Aus Quote
The choice for me is sophistication, small package, nice balance Vs tank. If you ever go fo a bigger lens, you will have no place to carry a 70-200 unless your are built like a Greek god. The 50 -135 is built for the pentax APC, the 70 - 200 is designed for a canon/nikon FF.

I use my 50-135 for events, people and a lot of landscapes. I use other lenses for wildlife.

I have used my sigma 17-70 a lot as it is so convenient and not bad, but to bring my photography the next step, I had to hide it and replace it with Pentax primes

If you want reach consider a K5 60 - 250 pentax combo. You don't need big apertures with a K5. Nice thing about pentax is the light and compact size.
Thanks Bob. which primes are you using ?

08-27-2011, 05:09 PM   #9
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10mm Sigma fisheye
15mm pentax Ltd
21mm pentax Ltd
35 mm macro pentax Ltd
(don't often bring out the 50mm 1.4)
100 mm macro WR
70 mm sigma macro does not go travelling any more, but use it as a portrait lens (too bulky for backpack compared to 100mm macro)
500 sigma is almost in the post
Very tempted to get sigma 150mm macro when it comes out

And PS just got a vest to keep my small primes in. Giving it a test drive this afternoon.
08-27-2011, 05:14 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bob from Aus Quote
10mm Sigma fisheye
15mm pentax Ltd
21mm pentax Ltd
35 mm macro pentax Ltd
(don't often bring out the 50mm 1.4)
100 mm macro WR
70 mm sigma macro does not go travelling any more, but use it as a portrait lens (too bulky for backpack compared to 100mm macro)
500 sigma is almost in the post
Very tempted to get sigma 150mm macro when it comes out
Do you recommend sigma 50mm or 70mm prime for portrait?
08-27-2011, 05:25 PM   #11
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I have not used the sigma 50mm. I do use my sigma 70mm macro f2.8 for portraits in a formal or controlled situation. I am actually more impressed with this lens for portraits than for macro. I am not tempted by any other lens of this focal legnth. (Every review raves about this a great macro lens. I prefer my pentax 100 WR any time for sharpness and capturing colour.)

Looking back I probably would have made more use of the pentax 50mm macro than my 50mm 1.4

Most of my people photos is more casual such as events and then i exclusively use my 50-135
08-27-2011, 06:38 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bob from Aus Quote
I have not used the sigma 50mm. I do use my sigma 70mm macro f2.8 for portraits in a formal or controlled situation. I am actually more impressed with this lens for portraits than for macro. I am not tempted by any other lens of this focal legnth. (Every review raves about this a great macro lens. I prefer my pentax 100 WR any time for sharpness and capturing colour.)

Looking back I probably would have made more use of the pentax 50mm macro than my 50mm 1.4

Most of my people photos is more casual such as events and then i exclusively use my 50-135
Thanks Bob. well explained. Derek
08-27-2011, 07:40 PM   #13
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28-75: It took a long time for me to decide between using a 17-50 and the 28-75. I would have loved to have a 17-75 f2.8 but it does not exist. I had to decide between whether I wanted to do portraits or wide angle more. In the end I prefer to take pictures of people. I went with the 28-75 as my walkaround lens. Most people though go with something wider and shorter or go with the superzooms like 18-250-but I shoot a lot in low light and these are too slow.

50-135: When I want more reach this my favorite lens though. The big advantage is the smaller size with great image quality. I had a hard time carrying the 70-200. Just too big and heavy. I use the 50-135 a lot for indoor and outdoor events. Anything bigger would be hard to point at people. Even this is pushing it.

DA 70mm: This is a great portrait lens. I used to use it all the time. It was the lens that got me interested in taking portraits. They say its not the lens but the photographer and that's true but boy does a lens like this make a difference. That said, since most of my photography is off the cuff I had to change to a zoom. When I first got the 28-75, I almost returned it. I was used to the build quality of the Pentax and this lens was loud, felt like plastic and even though the images were great I did not like the feel of it. But I have gotten used to it and in fact, I dont use ithe DA 70 as much anymore. I limit it to when I know that I am only going to take a portrait and I dont want to use the large 50-135.
08-28-2011, 05:17 PM   #14
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If you're going to be shooting portraits in a studio, do yourself a favor and buy the Tamron 28-75mm. It's inexpensive, and it also makes a great walk-around lens. And because of its price, it won't break your heart if something happens to it on one of those so-called "walk-arounds".

My two main lenses are the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8, and the Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8. But in my home-studio, I only use the Tamron. The focal length range is perfect for working with people in a studio. Without moving around, I can zoom out to get a group shot, or I can zoom in for a head & shoulders shot. The sharpness is outstanding; sharp at f/2.8, and razor sharp beyond. Plus, you never have to worry about distortions or vignetting slowing down your work process.

It's also the lens I use for all of my eBay pictures, since it can focus on objects quite close...like, within a few inches of the front element. My Sigma 50-150mm has trouble when things get closer than a meter, and really performs best at 3 meters or more. I've heard that the 50-135mm and 70-200mm lenses are similar in that regard. But then again, they're telephoto zooms, so what do you expect.

As far as the longer option, I think the major question is whether you don't mind the extra size and weight of the 70-200mm, or would prefer the more compact 50-135mm. The 70-200 will obviously give you more reach, but just make sure you understand how truly massive it is. My recommendation would be the Sigma 50-150mm, if you can find it. That's been getting hard since it was discontinued a few months ago, but somebody posted a link a few days ago to a place that still had it in stock for $750. I can probably find it if you're interested.

If I have time a little later, I'll post some full-size samples from my home studio with the 28-75mm for your pixel-peeping pleasure.

Last edited by Edgar_in_Indy; 08-28-2011 at 05:28 PM.
08-28-2011, 06:19 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edgar_in_Indy Quote
If you're going to be shooting portraits in a studio, do yourself a favor and buy the Tamron 28-75mm. It's inexpensive, and it also makes a great walk-around lens. And because of its price, it won't break your heart if something happens to it on one of those so-called "walk-arounds".

My two main lenses are the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8, and the Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8. But in my home-studio, I only use the Tamron. The focal length range is perfect for working with people in a studio. Without moving around, I can zoom out to get a group shot, or I can zoom in for a head & shoulders shot. The sharpness is outstanding; sharp at f/2.8, and razor sharp beyond. Plus, you never have to worry about distortions or vignetting slowing down your work process.

It's also the lens I use for all of my eBay pictures, since it can focus on objects quite close...like, within a few inches of the front element. My Sigma 50-150mm has trouble when things get closer than a meter, and really performs best at 3 meters or more. I've heard that the 50-135mm and 70-200mm lenses are similar in that regard. But then again, they're telephoto zooms, so what do you expect.

As far as the longer option, I think the major question is whether you don't mind the extra size and weight of the 70-200mm, or would prefer the more compact 50-135mm. The 70-200 will obviously give you more reach, but just make sure you understand how truly massive it is. My recommendation would be the Sigma 50-150mm, if you can find it. That's been getting hard since it was discontinued a few months ago, but somebody posted a link a few days ago to a place that still had it in stock for $750. I can probably find it if you're interested.

If I have time a little later, I'll post some full-size samples from my home studio with the 28-75mm for your pixel-peeping pleasure.
Thanks for your output. Right now, I wanna do mostly outside portrait and later inside. ( still working on my inside equipment ) 70-200 is too heavy to hold for portrait for long hours. I have sigma 17-70 which I mainly use for portrait but I think 2.8 would be better and perhaps the quality is not razor sharp. have you tried 50-135 and compare to IQ to tamron?

pls post some of your photos or if there is a link, I would be happy to take a look.

Regards,

Derek
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