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11-03-2011, 01:44 PM   #16
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50-135 is pure magic, only zoom i ever regreted selling! Size, weight, handling and the optical quality are great! The range is imho perfect. That lens has this shimmery and crisp feeling, it kinda places soft and sharp in the right places where you want it to be soft and sharp. Got some great looking bokeh to!

Highly recomended!

11-03-2011, 02:46 PM   #17
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Can`t speak for the 50-135 but the 16-50 is a "tool". I would recommend it.
11-03-2011, 02:56 PM   #18
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I say, throw caution to the wind and get all 3 da* zooms
11-03-2011, 11:09 PM   #19
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For my style, I would go for DA 16-45mm instead of DA* 16-50mm. (by optimization!) I cannot agree more how excellent DA* 50-135mm is. It's just ...... AWESOME!!!

Generally, I only carry 2 lenses, DA 12-24mm and DA* 50-135mm, and feel like they cover all situations I against. (Sometimes bring 1 more which is FA 50mm)

11-04-2011, 04:46 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by brosen Quote
I am looking for better DR
The lenses you are looking at are excellent, a step above the 18-135 for sure. but if you're really looking for more dynamic range then it's a camera issue, not a lens issue.
11-05-2011, 02:54 PM   #21
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Hi Brosen,

I don't/didn't have the 18-135mm but have the 18-55 mm WR and the 55-300 mm and just got both those DA* today. I can tell you that both are quite close to my fixed focal length (DA 21, DA35 macro and DFA 100). I'm actually really happy with these and probably should have got them sooner! This might not be what you want to hear though...

Also, not sure what you meant by more DR (more a camera/sensor thing as mentioned by bdéry) but I think I understand what you mean. The f2.8 makes a HUGE difference, at least to me, compared to the f3.5-5.6 range of opening.

Let us know what path you took.
HPH
11-05-2011, 03:52 PM   #22
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I followed the recommendation of one of the forum members and rented the 18-50, 50-135 and 60-250 all DA* lenses. I am not a professional so any comment or opinion, please it's from a very basic amateur who likes and enjoy photography, but does not know a lot about photography and has limited experience. All the tests were performed with the K-5 in P mode, Auto ISO and Center Focus.

Regarding AF: The 60-250 is by far the fastest of the three and the 50-135 is the slowest, the 18-50 was OK but not super fast, I have to agree that SDM is NOT the fastest AF out there, maybe is super silent but not fast, I compared AF with the 18-135 non SDM lens and I would say after some basic tests, the 18-135 is fast and consistent AF, maybe on par with the 60-250.

From a Color Rendition and Sharpness perspective, I did not notice huge differences in my Apple 30" Cinema Display at full resolution 2560 x 1600 and brightness. It was not super sunny outside (MN weather) so I was not able to fully use the DA* lenses, but I can say that the 18-135 lens is a VERY GOOD lens for the price ~$400.

Conclusion: I will keep for now the 18-135 WR, 100 Macro WR, 50-200 WR and 40 Limited, those four lenses support 90% of my current needs without a huge investment.

I will use the money to buy the upcoming NEX-7 with a Pentax adapter and start doing some tests at 24M pixels.

Thanks for all your comments and support, I really enjoy this forums.
11-08-2011, 05:53 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by brosen Quote
I compared AF with the 18-135 non SDM lens
The 18-135 is SDM, but a "new" version of the SDM system.

11-08-2011, 05:54 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
The 18-135 is SDM, but a "new" version of the SDM system.
Are you sure the 18-135 is SDM ?, I thought it was screw drive, thanks
11-08-2011, 09:44 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by brosen Quote
Are you sure the 18-135 is SDM ?, I thought it was screw drive, thanks
It is not screw drive, there is a motor in the lens. It is termed DC by Pentax, not SDM. It does have silent focus like SDM, and seems more reliable. At least I haven't heard of any failures with the new AF system.
11-08-2011, 10:22 AM   #26
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The 50-135mm is a must-have (but I'd definitely get the extended warranty), but personally I would probably pair it with the Sigma 17-50mm or the Tamron 28-75mm.

I've never been that impressed with the full-size images I've been able to pixel-peep from the Pentax 16-50mm, and the SDM is definitely a question mark. Fortunately, there are very credible alternatives in the form of the Sigma 17-50mm and Tamron 17-50mm. They both have much longer warranties than the Pentax and don't have any particular stigma attached to them for unreliability. In the case of the Pentax 50-135mm, there is currently no direct competitor since Sigma discontinued the 50-150mm HSM f/2.8.

If you go with the 28-75mm, you could later add a super-wide zoom like the Sigma 10-20mm or 8-16mm. The 8-16mm would also pair very well with the Sigma 17-50mm.
11-08-2011, 10:28 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Edgar_in_Indy Quote
Fortunately, there are very credible alternatives in the form of the Sigma 17-50mm and Tamron 17-50mm. They both have much longer warranties than the Pentax and don't have any particular stigma attached to them for unreliability.
I don't know about that. I have honestly never seen a lens with more complaints of auto-focus issues than the Tamron 17-50mm.
11-08-2011, 10:56 AM   #28
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I don't know much about that, and I don't own the Tamron 17-50mm. I did own one briefly, and didn't notice any AF issues, but returned it due to that fact that it did not seem to be a true f/2.8 (seemed more like f/3.3). But it seems to be one of the most popular after-market lenses, so just the fact that there are so many copies out there could contribute to a larger volume of complaints. Just imagine how many Tamron 17-50mm lenses are out there compared to the Sigma 16-50mm.

The Tamron 17-50mm is also a popular first lens for newer photographers, so maybe some of the so-called issues would not be issues in the hands of an experienced photographer. Just speculating.

But all that aside, the low price of the Tamron makes it a popular value pick. With the money one saves with the Tamron, they could get a super-wide zoom to go along with it.
11-08-2011, 10:59 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
It is not screw drive, there is a motor in the lens. It is termed DC by Pentax, not SDM. It does have silent focus like SDM, and seems more reliable. At least I haven't heard of any failures with the new AF system.
The DC lens is pure KAF3, with no screw 'backup' for AF. Some (all? anyone?) of the SDM lenses at least have the screw AF as well, although the screw drive isn't able to be used on more current bodies. For the $, this is either customer abuse in making yet more planned obsolescence $ lenses, or just stupidity. Maybe Pentax will surprise in a nice way and enable to screw drive to be used with a firmware update in the future. This is a main reason I'm not considering a set of SDM lenses in my future at this point.

I'd love to see a 'DC2' that retains the screw-drive (let's face it, this isn't a huge additional cost) along with a firmware update that allows user selection between DC (or SDM) or the screw drive. That would, at least for me, put the SDM/DC lenses much more strongly into my future considerations.
11-08-2011, 11:09 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by rtpguy Quote
The DC lens is pure KAF3, with no screw 'backup' for AF. Some (all? anyone?) of the SDM lenses at least have the screw AF as well, although the screw drive isn't able to be used on more current bodies. For the $, this is either customer abuse in making yet more planned obsolescence $ lenses, or just stupidity.
All of the DA* lenses with SDM also have screw drive. The DA 17-70 has SDM but no screw drive. The 17-70 and 18-135mm won't AF on K100D or *istD bodies. It's not such a big deal, there are plenty of lenses that will work. I would recommend a body upgrade for the oldest cameras rather than upgrading from the kit lens to a 17-70 or 18-135mm.

Last edited by audiobomber; 11-08-2011 at 11:15 AM.
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