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05-01-2012, 07:54 PM   #1
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Which zoom to keep or get

When I first got my K-5 I bought it with a Sigma 17-70 (see sig). Since then, I have become primarily a prime shooter and haven't touched Sigma for quite a while. Until there was one day when I was out playing with my kid and it started to rain. Since I didn't have a WR lens or rain cover at the time, I had to put my camera away and missed few good shots.

I have since bought a DA 18-55 WR and few of those cheap rain covers but now I am wondering whether I can consolidate 18-55WR with Sigma 17-70. I have several options: (i) return 18-55 and stick with the Sigma but use a rain cover the next time; (ii) keep both and use 18-55 for pouring rain and 17-70 for light drizzel (with rain cover); (iii) return the 18-55 and get the 100 WR; or (iv) get rid of both zooms and replace with a new zoom (e.g. 18-135??)

For sake of budgeting, we need to keep the purchase, if any, at less than $1k.

05-01-2012, 08:06 PM   #2
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How often will you shoot in the rain? If the answer is a few to a lot, you may be best to consider the DA18-135 (WR) as an all-around WR zoom lens. Your prime lenses would complement nicely your 18-135mm all-around lens while the zoom range will give you more flexibility than your 17-70 & 18-55 lenses IMHO.

I think that it does make sense to keep both 18-55 and 17-70mm, even just for WR sake. The DA18-135mm WR would work nicely with your WR K-5, giving you a complete WR setup (body + lens). If you need better IQ, your primes would be perfect complements of the DA18-135mm.

Hope that the comment may help.
05-01-2012, 08:25 PM   #3
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I don't think I will shoot in the rain very often, probably on the order of less than 15 days a year.
05-01-2012, 08:46 PM   #4
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The 18-135 seems like the best answer but to be honest I have both the 18-55 (not WR though) and the Sigma 17-70 and both have their uses.

The Sigma is a great makeshift Macro lens and is nice and fast for wide indoor shots- also goes to f4 right up to 60mm.
I have used mine in 'Pouring Rain' with my K7 aswell with no fault although it is the non-hsm/OS version.

Due to the Sigmas size I often grab the DA18-55 for a light wide lens when I don't want the bulk but its abit odd on the K7 as it is from my Red Kx!
Its also great when we are shooting straight to Jpeg as it auto adjusts in body and has warmer out of lens colours than the Sigma. Of course this aspect may be replicated by the 18-135.

05-01-2012, 09:06 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by chesebert Quote
For sake of budgeting, we need to keep the purchase, if any, at less than $1k.
With that budget, I would sell the 17~70 and just go all out and get a DA*50~135; this will leave you with 2 WR lenses with one giving you IQ as good as the primes in your kit...
05-01-2012, 09:28 PM   #6
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We all speak about the lenses we know. If the 18-55 wr is a good range for you, then sell the sigma and get the da* 50-135. You will gain some length that is not currently in you bag and it is 2.8 which is nice too. Zooms are great and the da* line does get you closer to the look you are getting with some of your current primes. Since your budget allows, I would definitely go with the da* line over the 18-135 (get a used one on the forum marketplace). I would actually most recommend the da* 60-250, but that is out of the $1000 price range unless you get a deal and get a nice price for the sigma. I have all 3 da* zoom and the 60-250 is by far my favorite.

That said, my dfa 100 wr macro arrives tomorrow. If you are truly happiest with primes, then you should probably go in this direction. It expands on your current gear and has wr and macro (which you lose in options of buying pentax zoom). It is said to be truly equivalent to the da ltd line. It is an equally good option.
05-01-2012, 10:24 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by joe.penn Quote
With that budget, I would sell the 17~70 and just go all out and get a DA*50~135; this will leave you with 2 WR lenses with one giving you IQ as good as the primes in your kit...
The sad truth is that I was just about to get the 50-135mm but couldn't quite pull the trigger before the doubling of the price. Very sad now thinking about it. Now, I believe it's out of my price range even if I can sell 17-70 for a decent price. I would also be concerned with buying an used SMD lens (I found two selling locally from the 2007 era for around $900ish)

The 50-250 would be nicer, but it's severely out of my price range subsequent to the increase.

Does anyone think DFA 100 WR would be a reasonable walk-about lens for the rainy days? I am having trouble envisioning that.
05-02-2012, 12:37 PM   #8
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I don't shoot in the rain much, but appreciate being able to. I'm also a prime guy. My solution is to rely more on my cheaper lenses - "M" series rather than Limiteds - and also to keep a rain cover in my bag. Takes no space and it's extremely easy to stick one over the camera and lens. The camera is a K200D, which is WR, so I focus more on protectng the lens than the body. Given that I don't do it much and mostly use lenses that have no electronics and won't cost mich to replace, I don't worry.

05-02-2012, 12:57 PM   #9
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100mm is quite long for a walkabout lens. If the 18-55 serves you well, keep it for the WR capability. If you're looking for better IQ, stick with the Sigma and the cover (or consider the DA*16-50). If budget's an issue, then also consider the DA 50-200 WR for telephoto WR capability, but its IQ isn't great - hence the 50-135 suggestion. A lens that would take care of both short and long is the DA 18-135. Better than the 18-55 and not as expensive as either DA* lens.
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