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02-26-2012, 03:57 PM   #1
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Suggestion for next lens?

Hi everybody,

I own a k-7 and Super program SLR. I used to have two lenses, one is the DA 15mm for landscape shotting and one is M50 F1.7 for portrait. However I found the DA 15mm is not worth that much for me; and M50 F1.7 is a good lens, but the MF sometimes is difficult to focus.
So in this way since I have already sold out the DA 15mm, I have some extra $ for another lens. My budget is like $850. In this way I'm thinking probably it's time for me to restart building my lens base...and here are some thoughts and concerning:
1) DA* 16-50 F/2.8: In fact the focal length of this one is perfect. It can cover 15mm (almost), 21mm, 40mm and 50mm; In this way functionally I don't need to think about the primes such as 21mm, 40mm and 50mm. However it is way too expensive than the DA 16-45 F/4.
2) DA 16-45 F/4 (used) + 50 F/1.4. A very balance combo of landscape and portrait. I do no worry about the performance of 16-45 at F/8 or higher; and the prime such as 50 F/1.4 will absolutely be a good choice.
3) DA 21mm F/3.2+ DA 40mm F/2.8: think this one can cover both landscape and portrait. However I'm not a DA 21mm fan for it's price and maximum aperture.

Any ideas?

Regards,
Bing

02-26-2012, 04:33 PM   #2
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Here is a link to the in depth review of the DA*16-50 and the comparable third party lenses. I have the DA*16-50 and use it a lot but for value the Tamron or Sigma equivalents deserve a look.

You need to decide if you want to go for zooms or primes. If zooms, take a look at the link for a short zoom (wide angle to normal) and then look at the DA 55-300 for a long zoom. Those two will cover everything you need for a long time. If you go with the Tamron you could get the 55-300 and still be within your budget.

Another one to look at is the DA 18-135, which covers most of the range in one lens.
02-26-2012, 04:39 PM   #3
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This is a simple no brainer.... Tamron 17-50..... it knocks the spots off the pentax for a fraction of the cost.
Combine it with Tamron 70-200..... All you could ever need !
02-26-2012, 04:57 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
Here is a link to the in depth review of the DA*16-50 and the comparable third party lenses. I have the DA*16-50 and use it a lot but for value the Tamron or Sigma equivalents deserve a look.

You need to decide if you want to go for zooms or primes. If zooms, take a look at the link for a short zoom (wide angle to normal) and then look at the DA 55-300 for a long zoom. Those two will cover everything you need for a long time. If you go with the Tamron you could get the 55-300 and still be within your budget.

Another one to look at is the DA 18-135, which covers most of the range in one lens.
Thanks Jatrax.
I have read the pentax-tamron-sigma zoom lenses introduction. In fact I would like to stick to the Pentaxs, however the price makes me think whether it worth that much or not.
I might probably think about the DA 55-300 and 16-45 for a compromise.

02-26-2012, 04:58 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by westmill Quote
This is a simple no brainer.... Tamron 17-50..... it knocks the spots off the pentax for a fraction of the cost.
Combine it with Tamron 70-200..... All you could ever need !
Thanks Westmill. However is Tamron 17-50 a good mechanical quality?
02-26-2012, 05:35 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by hongzhibin1987 Quote
Thanks Westmill. However is Tamron 17-50 a good mechanical quality?
In terms of mechanical quality is feels fine but nowhere near the Pentax. I would say half-way between the kit lens and the 16-50mm and slightly worse than the 16-45mm. But optically is it superior to all three.

Just to make your decision a bit more complicated, Pentax has indicated that they are coming out with a replacement for the 16-50mm sometime in 2013.
02-26-2012, 05:42 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sol Invictus Quote
In terms of mechanical quality is feels fine but nowhere near the Pentax. I would say half-way between the kit lens and the 16-50mm and slightly worse than the 16-45mm. But optically is it superior to all three.

Just to make your decision a bit more complicated, Pentax has indicated that they are coming out with a replacement for the 16-50mm sometime in 2013.

Nice reply Sol Invictus. Anyway the 16-50 is out. I'v read through most comment online and overall; basically is way more expensive then either Tamron or 16-45. And thinking about the price I don't think this is my first choice.
Instead I might go for 16-45 and 55-300. I'm not a "original product" fan so I might go both for a used one. 16-45 is sold like 28X on B&H used one, and DAL 55-300 might be much more cheaper.And none of these two has a bigger max. aperture. Instead, I might still go for 50 f1.4.
Anyway, any idea for a prime alternative of the 16-45 F/4?
02-26-2012, 05:47 PM   #8
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Coming back to your 3 options (below), I think that you need to include a fast prime (eg 50mm f1.4) for low light. I have also a K-7. The K-7 is a great camera IMHO, too often looked down by some. But its weakness is the high-ISO In turn, you need to have a fast prime to shoot in low light conditions. This is imperative.

1) DA* 16-50 F/2.8.
2) DA 16-45 F/4 (used) + 50 F/1.4.
3) DA 21mm F/3.2+ DA 40mm F/2.8.

Although I may understand your preference to have Pentax, I am not sure that it is the more efficient approach. For example, I have 7 lenses, with only 2 true Pentax lenses (FA31mm f1.8 & FA*300mm f4.5) and one Tamron lens rebadged Pentax (DA18-250mm). Al my other lenses are non Pentax and they are great

Coming back to your needs, the Tamron 17-50mm with a fast prime (50mm f.14) could be possibly the better option.

Food for thought. Hope that the comments may help.

02-26-2012, 05:54 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by hcc Quote
Coming back to your 3 options (below), I think that you need to include a fast prime (eg 50mm f1.4) for low light. I have also a K-7. The K-7 is a great camera IMHO, too often looked down by some. But its weakness is the high-ISO In turn, you need to have a fast prime to shoot in low light conditions. This is imperative.

1) DA* 16-50 F/2.8.
2) DA 16-45 F/4 (used) + 50 F/1.4.
3) DA 21mm F/3.2+ DA 40mm F/2.8.

Although I may understand your preference to have Pentax, I am not sure that it is the more efficient approach. For example, I have 7 lenses, with only 2 true Pentax lenses (FA31mm f1.8 & FA*300mm f4.5) and one Tamron lens rebadged Pentax (DA18-250mm). Al my other lenses are non Pentax and they are great

Coming back to your needs, the Tamron 17-50mm with a fast prime (50mm f.14) could be possibly the better option.

Food for thought. Hope that the comments may help.
The pentax perference and the efficient approach cannot exist simultaneously, I totally got that =).
And in this way the fast prime (50mm F1.4) seems to be sure to get. And absolutely I'll make a decision between the Tamron and Pentax 16-45 (although Tamron is still like $200 expensive than the used 16-45 ones. the used 16-45 was sold as 284 on adorama).
Again, thanks for your food
02-26-2012, 05:56 PM   #10
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The tammy is a great lens you gotta test to see if it back or frontfocuses but for the price you won't get better..it definitely feels a lot better than the kit lens and it's got a decent build quality to resist the use as a main workhorse...it's a an Aps-c lens though...the 28-75 is FF and as good with a price tag as appealing but would lack wideness for your digital camera...
Buying any of those you could complement it with another lens...the sigmas 10-20 or 8-16 are nice lenses too...I would probably buy one of the Tammys and a pentax prime.
02-26-2012, 06:10 PM   #11
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Are you sure you will be comfortable with zoom(s)? Start with the one and see. I personally find them great for theatre, but that is different, If the need is there they are a powerful tool. For anywhere else (for me) I find the zoom inhibiting. Of course these are private likes--but odd you have or at least speak only of using 2 primes.
02-26-2012, 06:15 PM   #12
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For landscapes I find that f4 is more than sufficient - and even at night, my shutter speeds just extend (using a tripod). I have the 16-45 and find it to be a very good lens. I also have the 55-300 and it covers its range nicely supported by a 50mm/f1.7 and an 85mm/f2.8. Most of my shooting is wider than 50mm.

Most landscape photographers shot at 28-30mm, in that distortion is virtually non existent. Also, as you go wider, the center of the image is push into the background to make room for the additional field of view being pulled in along the edges. I tend to do quite a bit of stitching - in that solves most of these problems. I can go as wide as I want, without relegating the main subject of the frame in to the background. I also have gone for f4 glass since I really do not need fast. That said I have splurged on two primes (f2.8) from Contax (Carl Zeiss) the first one to see what the difference was and the second one since the first was so good and I found the 85 for a good price.


Last edited by interested_observer; 02-27-2012 at 06:42 AM.
02-26-2012, 09:06 PM   #13
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Thank you all for your advises. Considering the budget ---I don't have to spend them all to satisfy myself----so I ordered a used 16-45 from adorama.
It is right that I spent too much time on thinking about the lens but not thinking about how to take photos. Hope this one won't let me down.
And next week I'll start looking a prime such as 50/1.4. Anyone has any ideas about it difference between 50/1.7?
Many thanks

Bing
02-27-2012, 06:47 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by hongzhibin1987 Quote
... M50 F1.7 is a good lens, but the MF sometimes is difficult to focus. ...
If you find the f1.7 difficult to focus, you will find the f1.4 even more difficult. The one thing you could do is a focus screen - like the katzeye. I have read that the 1.7 is as good as the 1.4....

02-27-2012, 08:39 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
If you find the f1.7 difficult to focus, you will find the f1.4 even more difficult. The one thing you could do is a focus screen - like the katzeye. I have read that the 1.7 is as good as the 1.4....

have already ordered one. =)
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