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12-07-2007, 06:54 AM   #1
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Looking for a new "main" lens for my istDs

I`m not quite happy with my 18-55mm DA kit -lens. Especially cause I feel the pictures often get a bit "dark" when its a little cludy or dusk, but also in general.I`m having problems deciding what lense to get to replace it.... this lense will be the one thats normally placed on my camera. I often take photos in situations where I dont have time to do adjustments, its just "pick a program (often sport-or green) and shoot. My main area of photography is fishing and landscape/nature, often with "action" pictures of f.ex landing fish, fighting fish etc, that needs good speed and ligh.... I`v been looking at these:


Pentax 16-45mm f4
Pentac 50mm f1.4

Tamron 17-50 f2.8
Sigma 18-50 f2.8

Any suggestions?

12-07-2007, 06:57 AM   #2
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Instead of spending a couple hundred bucks on more gear, get off Green/Auto mode! Learn WHY your pictures are dark. Sure, spending money is fun, but I believe you'll see a bigger improvement by LEARNING about photography rather than just buying more stuff. Especially with the FAST 50mm prime lens, you WILL NOT be able to get the most out of it using it in auto mode (especially in challenging situations)
My two cents...
12-07-2007, 07:12 AM   #3
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Egordon99 offers sound advice, but if you still want to spend some money I thoroughly recommend the Pentax 16-45 F4 -

I don't know about the Pentax kit lens as here in Australia we get the sigma as the kit lens. I found the 16-45 to be a huge step up in quality.
12-07-2007, 07:22 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by egordon99 Quote
Instead of spending a couple hundred bucks on more gear, get off Green/Auto mode! Learn WHY your pictures are dark. Sure, spending money is fun, but I believe you'll see a bigger improvement by LEARNING about photography rather than just buying more stuff. Especially with the FAST 50mm prime lens, you WILL NOT be able to get the most out of it using it in auto mode (especially in challenging situations)
My two cents...
Am I missing something in the OP's post? I see no mention of the Green button. Lots of people want to upgrade from the kit lens although I admit that the lens should expose correctly under all lighting conditions when used correctly.

As for an upgrade. Although I don't own one. Everyone that does highly recommends the Sigma 17-70 f2.8-4. Nice focal range and sharp images are being shown from it. I have the Tamron 28-70mm f2.8 Di more because I like the faster speed at all lengths and the lens is tack sharp. The other is the 16-45mm Pentax an excellent lens but not as fast as the other 2 and a shorter range. Personally I would stay away from the DA*16-50mm, just too many issues.

12-07-2007, 07:26 AM   #5
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QuoteQuote:
I often take photos in situations where I dont have time to do adjustments, its just "pick a program (often sport-or green) and shoot.
Also, his comment about pictures appearing "dark" leads me to believe he should first take some time to learn some basics before spending money.

I've seen folks plop down $800 on a high end lens, take a picture which comes out horribly overexposed (TAv mode wide open, slow shutter speed on a sunny day) and then proclaim that the lens is bad. I just think its a good thing to learn the basics. I mean if you care enough to spend $500 or more on equipment, you should care enough to pick up a book on photography and start to use some of the creative modes.
12-07-2007, 07:44 AM   #6
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I agree with egordon. I dont ever use the program buttons and I'm far from pro. I used that lens for a loong time b4 i upgraded to the sigma 18-50 f2.8 (which is a fantastic lens). But i still use the kit lens with the infrared permanently attached to it
12-07-2007, 07:57 AM   #7
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When someones screams "fish on" I dont have time to play with shutter and blender values, it soften a matter of seconds before the opportunity is gone. I dont have time to check the scrren to see how the images appear, or change values to safeguard some of the shots. Let me give you an example:



I got a phonecall saying "FISH ON" and ran- when I got there they were about to net the fisk. My camera stood on "green" and I got a few shots before the fish was in the net and the opportunity was gone. The light was better than it appears from the image. From I arrived tilll it was over there was perhaps 10-15seconds.
12-07-2007, 07:59 AM   #8
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egordon99, I stand corrected. Sorry I missed that line somehow, shouldn't post so fast without a better proof read...

You are indeed correct. Green should never be a quick fall back setting. I think they put it there for P&S shooters and it's a lousy setting on any body. Once you learn how to use the camera and the cameras other settings you can shoot just a fast and get much better results.

If I were to try and teach a new shooter (god help them!!) I'd say get the excellent book: Understanding Exposure by Bryan F. Peterson and shoot only in M mode for the first 500 frames of so. Then try Tv or Av. But if not at least switch the camera to Av and learn that

12-07-2007, 08:21 AM   #9
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Yep, I ALWAYS recommend Peterson's book.
Karl - Once you understand how ISO/f-stop/shutter speed work, you can definetly grab shots like the ones you posted. Keep it on Av, pick an f-stop based on how much DOF you want. Point, half-press to activate meter, if shutter speed is too slow, bump up the ISO. I have my K10D to have the ISO set by the front dial, so it doesn't take long.

I don't think a better lens would help you with that shot as it appears the shutter speed was too slow. If the light was decent, you should have been able to get a faster shutter speed and/or bumped up the ISO. I've never used auto modes, so don't know how they work. But I'm pretty sure the 16-45mm f/4 would give you similar(ly bad) shots if you stick with auto mode.
12-07-2007, 10:31 AM   #10
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Here`s another example-this picture is taken with the "action" programme. I have my rod in my left hand my camera in my right....



Maybe I`m asking to much, maybe its not possible to get what I want without "working" the camera. But as I say-.in some situations there just aint time to do so.
12-07-2007, 10:43 AM   #11
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That picture looks better, composition aside (is that YOU actually catching the fish?), seems like the shutter speed was fast enough (look at the water drops flying off the fish's tail).

I understand your issue with setting up the shot, but I don't think a different lens will overcome the issues with using the Auto/Scene modes. Now, a different lens will perform better, IF the exposure settings are correct, but then you would need to get out of the auto modes so you are in control.

Hope that makes sense! What kind of fish is that?
12-07-2007, 11:01 AM   #12
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It makes a lot of sense, what you and Peter has taken time to answer me

As I have understood it, the auto-programs will choose the best setting as the camera can determine it under the current conditions. I then thought a better lense (especially concerning the light sensibility) will give better result when I hit the button.

That is me catching the fish yes, its a salmon, a runaway caged salmon that is. I had the camera around my neck when it hit my lure, so i wriggled it to "action" and when the fish got a bit tired I tightened my reel-brake and held the fish with the rod in my left hand. As you can understand, the composition kinda had to "be what it could" as I couldnt raise the camera to my eyes.

This was under very good conditions, but I should have had a polaroid-filter on. In a larger definition the fish gets a little "unsharp"
12-07-2007, 11:26 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Karl Inge S Quote
When someones screams "fish on" I dont have time to play with shutter and blender values, it soften a matter of seconds before the opportunity is gone. I dont have time to check the scrren to see how the images appear, or change values to safeguard some of the shots. Let me give you an example:



I got a phonecall saying "FISH ON" and ran- when I got there they were about to net the fisk. My camera stood on "green" and I got a few shots before the fish was in the net and the opportunity was gone. The light was better than it appears from the image. From I arrived tilll it was over there was perhaps 10-15seconds.
Sorry Karl, but I have to disagree with that. After a little practice you'll do fine with what you have in that sort of situation.
I know first hand.

This picture was taken using an Entirely Manual 50mm f2 lens
12-07-2007, 12:05 PM   #14
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Dont see how the situations are the same- your photo is taken in sunlight-like this one of mine
When theres good light there is no problem.

12-07-2007, 12:27 PM   #15
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Karl,
The DS has a tendency to underexpose, especially in harsh lighting.

Next time you have the opportunityTry this; preset the camera in P mode and add +1/3 to 1/2 stop EV before you get to the site. The problem with the green mode or the scene modes are, it does not allow you any adjustments. P will do almost the same thing, but allow you to set your own settings such as ISO, and EV. The trick is to set it up before you hit the water.
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