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05-10-2012, 07:59 PM   #1
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I just bought a K-r and 5 random lenses HELP!

Fist a little background, if you would like to, you can skip down to ďlensesĒ which outlines my specific questions.

After much deliberation between Nikon, Canon, and Sony, I decided not to go with any of them. My primary reason for choosing Pentax was the backwards compatibility with old lenses. Iím essentially brand new to the DSLR scene, (upgrading from a point and shoot Fujifilm s7000). I know that the k-r is going to be quite an upgrade! I had it rushed shipped and it arrives tomorrow!
When I started researching different types of photography I realized that I already wanted several lenses and I hadnít even bought a camera yet! My primary interests right now are bokeh, macro for insects, and telephoto for birds. Learning that that Pentax was backwards compatible with old lenses sealed the deal. After all, as a novice im most interested in playing and discovery, I donít yet know exactly what I want out of a lens and camera combo.


In my haste I purchased a set of lenses off of craigslist today, I may have over paid or bought lenses that Iím not interested in (im not sure), but I only paid $55 for 5 lenses so I figured what the heck..

I ended up with the following: They are all manual focus. And are all K mount. And all look to be in very good shape.

Vivitar 75-205mm 1:3.8 (Macro Focusing Zoom) with a Hoya HMC 62mm SKYLIGHT(1B) filter

Auto Chinon multi-coated 1:2.8 28mm with the same filter mentioned above

Five Star 35-70mm 1:3.5-4.8 (it says macro on the side of the body) this lens has a cokinlight skylight 1A filter on it. Says Auto-Zoom on it as well.

Auto Chinon 50mm 1:1.7 with a Hoya Skylight (1b) filter mounted on it.

And a Vivitar MC Tele Converter 2x PK-A/R-PK

I know itís probably foolish to have a set of lenses before the camera even arrives but I couldnít resist.
I have gathered that the 50mm 1:1.7 is good for bokeh but as for the rest of them, I have no idea what im looking at or where to start researching. Honestly the amount of lens options is staggering and I donít know where to start.
I was hoping you could point me in right direction, like what type of photography each of these lenses can be used for? Additionally, what would be some good lenses for me to look out for in the future given my interests? Are there any must-haves for the novice photographer? And when I buy in the future, should I look for better quality lenses than these? Or will these off brands suffice for a beginner?

Thank you so much for any advice!

05-10-2012, 08:20 PM   #2
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This lens:
Vivitar 75-205mm 1:3.8 (Macro Focusing Zoom)
is a freakin' awesome lens! I own it. It's very sharp on anything within 40-50 feet. Will edit this post with some example pics from it.

Here they are!

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The only problem this lens has is some purple fringing, especially when all the way zoomed out, and at stuff a few hundred feet away it's a bit on the soft side, but hey, it was a 20 dollar lens. I love it, and I've had in in my bag plenty of times. I think you will be fairly happy with it.

Last edited by VoiceOfReason; 05-10-2012 at 08:34 PM.
05-10-2012, 08:32 PM   #3
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Here are the lens reviews from the Forum's lens database. For a total of $55 it looks like you made a wonderful deal.

PS - on the teleconverter, check out to see if it has the dreaded Rico pin BEFORE mounting it on you camera body.
05-10-2012, 08:42 PM   #4
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If any of the lenses have an "A" setting you will be able to use the camera to control the aperture in AV mode.
I had a five star 35-70 that was that type, it was a very good mid zoom.
In any case go to the Beginners forum and read through the sticky "using manual lenses on a DSLR" if you haven't already.
You'll need to know to enable a setting for "allow aperture ring", it's explained in the sticky. Welcome!

05-10-2012, 09:01 PM   #5
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Thanks for the input everyone. I’m happy to see that the lenses aren’t all that bad! I’m extremely happy I discovered Pentax before making my final purchase!!

interested_observer, I can’t tell from the link if my lens has the pin you speak of. Can you by any chance tell if it does?

Here is the lot of them.

Again, thanks everyone for the info!

Last edited by dmbaile2; 05-10-2012 at 10:23 PM.
05-10-2012, 09:11 PM   #6
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Scratch that, it looks like I do indeed have the superfluous pin... Thanks for the heads up! Ill keep an eye out for those in the future.
05-10-2012, 09:26 PM   #7
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Nice haul! These and the Kr's kit lens will take you far. Yes, you'll want to remove the Ricoh pin on the TC. Those skylight filters are roughly equivalent to UV 'protection' filters but add the slightest bluish 'cooling' tint. Have fun!
05-10-2012, 11:54 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by dmbaile2 Quote
Scratch that, it looks like I do indeed have the superfluous pin... Thanks for the heads up! Ill keep an eye out for those in the future.
That's not a pin, that's a ball. When it's the same design as the other Pentax balls there's no need to remove it. (Proof: Two of the Pentax balls also pass over the AF screw every time you mount a modern lens, and it's no problem.)

(As a lucky owner of a lens with an actual Ricoh pin I will also tell you that there is little risk of mixing them up visually.)

05-11-2012, 12:14 AM   #9
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I'm with drougge, I don't see a bad pin on the teleconverter.

If you care to post pictures of the mounts on the other lenses we can tell you if there is anything to worry about.
05-11-2012, 04:06 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by drougge Quote
That's not a pin, that's a ball. When it's the same design as the other Pentax balls there's no need to remove it.
I have three of these KA/KR teleconverters and while I removed the Ricoh contact on the first two I got just to be on the safe side, I didn't bother with the third and I can confirm that it shows no signs of getting stuck to the camera.
05-11-2012, 05:13 AM   #11
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welcome to the LBA club. Now that you've started, in a few years you will end up like RioRico with several hundred lenses

But seriously, you have a good start to a range of different focal lengths.

Just a couple of quick pointers. Look closely at the zooms, With Zoom lenses typically they took a little liberty with the use of the word macro, to include anything that could reproduce an image 1/4 life size on the sensor/film true macro really is in the range of 1/2 to life size reproduction on the sensor, but these lenses will let you get started in close up work.

depending on your shooting taste, you may find two additional things,
-first 200mm is not long enough for wildlife, and you will see this when you start shooting and when adding the teleconverter. Ultimately you may want something faster than the F6.8 the zoom plus TC gives you but that can wait.
- second, you may want something wider than even the kit lens goes, and definitely wider than 28mm of the MF lenses you now own.
Just something to think about.
05-11-2012, 05:23 AM   #12
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Hi Folks,

I'm expecting delivery of a K-5 today, and just ran across this thread. So, I picked up two of my lenses that I'm planning to use on the new camera (my first DSLR), and examined them. Both appeared to have the pin. One is much smaller than the other. So, I removed the mounting disk from the Vivitar 100mm 1:3.5 Macro lens, lifted the brass flange with my fingernail, and the pin dropped out. I saved it. Well, that was easy, I said to myself.

So, I picked up the Sigma 70-210mm 1:4-5.6, removed the three mounting screws, and things started going wrong. The f-stop ring came off, there were lots of things sticking out of the mount, and it was immediately obvious that I couldn't remove the pin (actually looks more like a ball) without extensive disassembly. Further, I had mentally orientated the screws to the f-stop ring for reassembly, and now I had both in my hands! Oops. Well, I fiddled with it and was able to get it back together. But there is an up side. The f-stop ring has always been just about impossible to move on this lens. Before I tightened the mount screws I noticed that it moved very easily. Once tight, it was stiff again. So now I know, if I want to use the lens manually, just loosen the screws an eighth of a turn, set the f-stop, and tighten. I have it set on A now, where it will probably stay.

Thanks for the information.


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