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09-07-2011, 07:58 PM   #1
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One thing I noticed about this community

I have been on several different message boards over the years and more recently ones focused on photography, What I have found elsewhere is they "highly" recommend staying with lenses made by the manufacturer of the camera. Various reasons and opinions for it but if you ever mentioned Tamron or Sigma 90% of the responses would be calling you the Devil.

I am amazed on the variety of lenses in use and even recommended by the experience here, It's refreshing because when I started out I bought based on needs and budget and found alot of my Off brand lenses worked just fine. Just thought I would throw that out there no need in being brain washed by a price tag, It also helps getting real world advice and the pictures to back them up.

Thanks again for a wonderful information resource


09-07-2011, 08:06 PM   #2
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Based on merit, there are a number of lenses by third party manufacturers that do very well optically. Some of them aren't up to scratch. Pentax DA lenses are generally all very good, better than rival lenses from Tamron and Sigma, but there is no DA 28-75/2.8 or 70-200/2.8 lens and Tamron 90 macro and Sigma 70 macro lenses are amazing optically.

It's more about finding the focal length/range and speed you're after in the lens than the brand...
09-07-2011, 08:17 PM   #3
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It goes even further than you think. Not only is there tolerance for 3rd party lenses here, there's a portion of the community that is vocally opposed to Pentax least those that have SDM autofocus motors. SDM aversion nothwithstanding, I find Pentax lenses to generally be over-priced.

The thing that attracted me to Pentax in the first place was how the Pentax K-x offered more in the way of features and quality, for less money than the competition. At a time when they were still hard to find in-stock, I returned a Canon t2i to buy my K-x. Since photography is just a hobby for me, I'm always trying to get the most for my money. That's why I'm glad there's companies out there like Tamron and, especially, Sigma that are making great lenses at reasonable prices.
09-07-2011, 08:27 PM   #4
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You couple all of this with the ability to utilize in some way every lens made for the K-mount (and M42) and you have quite a choice of glass to use and create with.

09-07-2011, 08:39 PM   #5
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Many of us are also heavily involved|invested in old manual 'legacy' lenses, not just modern AF glass. An amazing variety of such lenses are available, from many lensmakers, often a bargain prices. Canon cameras can use even more such lenses. (And they keep taking our Takumars!) Takumars are an older Pentax brand, from the time when Asahi Pentax was neck-and-neck with Leica as making the world's best lenses. But many other great brands can be more-or-less easily modified or adapted for Pentax. And many 3rd-party lensmakers produced superior glass for Pentax.

And as mentioned, Pentax doesn't currently make a complete line of lenses, so Pentaxians looking for new glass can't be brand-name snobs. Combine that with Pentax's historical lousy marketing. In many countries, Pentax products just aren't available in brick-and-mortar shops. Many of us came to Pentax via online research. We weren't just sold a package by a retail clerk, nor did we grab a kit at a big-box discounter. So we're often aware of the strengths and weaknesses of various brands. We ain't brainwashed fandroids, nope!

Last edited by RioRico; 09-07-2011 at 10:54 PM.
09-07-2011, 08:39 PM   #6
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Sometimes the non-brand name lenses are better. Sometimes they are cheaper. It just depends on what you are after.
09-07-2011, 08:41 PM   #7
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+1 for the above 3 replies.

I don't have the budget for the top end DA and DA* lenses but even if (or when) I do, I will not be buying ones with SDM (Unless Pentax confirm the issues are fixed) - being in NZ we a bit distant from support.

I do love the way you can use the great old Pentax glass though. I have some old M42 Taks that I love for their character (and even their performance is still pretty good IMO)!
09-07-2011, 08:55 PM   #8
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Sigma current makes more lenses for Pentax than Pentax do themselves. I think that says something

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09-07-2011, 10:41 PM   #9
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Does anyone know if the Pentax AF interface is easier to reverse engineer than those for Canon and Nikon (or maybe it is even open to third parties)? Most Canon and Nikon users that avoid third party lenses do so because of AF issues, so differences in this area are probably important in the different perception of third party products.

Also, it's not really surprising that Canikon users recommend Canikon - that's how most of them got there in the first place - by buying into a brand, not into a product.
09-08-2011, 12:14 AM   #10
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I look at it this way. Lenses all do the same thing. Collect and focus light. Some do it better than others. Personally I prefer to keep it in the family for a few reasons. The least of which it Does limit some options. That is, if I was concerned about filling every millimeter in the lens focusing range, I would quickly go broke. Some say Pentax lenses are overpriced and won't pay the Pentax Tax. Well, fine for them but I'm quite happy with my lenses bearing the 6 letter word. That isn't to say I don't or won't buy third party lenses but if there's a Pentax lens to fill my needs, I'll buy it. There's a Voigtlander 58mm f1:1.4 glued to my K5 this month, for the entire month (Single In September).

The bigger joke about it is, some of those canikonians bemoaning third party will buy the Pentax lenses and chop them to work on Their cameras. I pay very little attention to the brand wars. Show me a nice picture, tell me how you did it (if you choose to), and I'm happy. The Hound, Could Not care less what the brand name is of the glass pointed at him. He runs from All lenses equally fast.

He isn't even impressed with the FA43 f1.9

09-08-2011, 02:04 AM   #11
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Pentax also has in-camera shake reduction, which works for all lenses regardless of manufacturer or vintage. So there isn't the advantage of IS/VR that other brands put into their lenses which give them a big edge up on the third-party offerings
09-08-2011, 04:21 AM   #12
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Well, there are good lenses and not so good lenses and no manufacturer has a monopoly on the "good lens" market. I think Pentax's strong point really is its primes, although they have some pretty decent zooms as well. Still, one of the beauties of Pentax cameras is going out and getting a thirty year old lens for 20 dollars and getting great photos with it. Some of these older lenses have character that has been manufactured out of the newer lenses.
09-08-2011, 04:31 AM   #13
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For some reason all my AF lenses are Pentax. Don't really know why. I must be a fanboy?! I do think Pentax lenses look a lot cooler then any off-brand lenses though.
09-08-2011, 04:50 AM   #14
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Well there are orthodox Pentaxians among us for whom 3rd party lenses are an anathema but most of us are not so strict.
09-08-2011, 04:57 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Sigma current makes more lenses for Pentax than Pentax do themselves. I think that says something
And most of the newer Sigma lenses are really good. I've been thoroughly impressed with the build, image quality, and performance of my Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8 EX HSM II. So much so that I'm planning an all-Sigma line-up, starting with the 8-16mm, then the 17-50mm f/2.8, plus the 50mm f/1.4. (And if I can ever find one, the 100-300mm f4.) I would take every single one of those lenses over its closest Pentax counterpart, regardless of which costs more.

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