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01-27-2008, 07:17 PM   #16
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A bit of history on my Macro lens usage.

Minolta film with Minolta 100mm/2.8 - focus ring stunk
Switched to Tamron 90mm/2.8 better focus ring (Minolta was sharper)
Switched back to new Minolta 100mm/2.8 D (nice focus ring)
Switched to Canon film and again bought the Tamron cause canon had no USM
Switched to Canon 100mm/2.8 USM and bought DSLR - didn't use macro cause it was too long
Switched back to Minolta for new DSLR - bought 100mm/2.8 D macro - (was too long)
Switched to Minolta 50mm/2.8 D macro - Nice!!
Swithed to Canon FF DSLR and bought 100mm/2.8 macro - cause only thing with USM (Really don't like it)

I will need a 50mm Macro with a cropped sensor. The Pentax 50mm/2.8 looks nice to me, but there is no focus limit switch on it.
I would also use a manual focus 50mm pentax lens, but I am not seeing any for sale.

01-27-2008, 07:29 PM   #17
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My 2-cents worth on the macro lens is the Tamron SP90mm Macro (the newest version for digital).

I haven't tried the Pentax 100mm Macro, so can't comment on it, but the Tamron SP90 is a classic of over 20 years standing, and is excellent. Not expensive either in the grand scheme of things.

I had the Tamron SP90 on my old Nikon film camera, and took a heap of great shots with it. As a relatively recent convert to Pentax digital SLR, one of the first lenses I bought was the appropriate version of the Tamron SP90.

Highly recommended.

The only other lens I can comment on is the Sigma 10-20mm rectilinear wide-angle. I have this lens as well as the Pentax 10-17 Fisheye. Now I know that everyone's methods and preferences are different, but I find that I only use the Fisheye occasionally for special effects, but the Sigma 10-20 is an outstanding landscape lens. Great lens, and with the PT Lens software to perform perspective correction if required, some absolutely stunning landscapes have been produced by others far more expert then me.

An excellent example, that I've quoted before, is Helga Kvam from Iceland (surely one of the most photogenic countries on the planet). She has now switched to a full-frame Canon 5D, so had to get rid of her Sigma 10-20, but most of the work in her online albums predates the change, and a large number are shot with the Sigma 10-20. Prepare to be amazed at the talent, if you're not familiar with Helga's work, and check out:

Flickr: Photos from hkvam

In particular, check out the set labelled "Your Favourites" - some amazing pics in there taken with the Sigma 10-20, one of the best being this one, taken at the 10mm end:

dawn over the fields on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Amazing stuff. Just goes to show it's the photographer rather than the lens that makes a photo work.....

Last edited by Derridale; 01-27-2008 at 07:38 PM.
01-27-2008, 09:19 PM   #18
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You can pick up the MC Zenitar 16/2.8 Fish Eye 16mm new for Pentax K for 175 bucks also thats suppose to be a great lens.
01-27-2008, 09:35 PM   #19
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I second Pete on the Tamron for casual macro work. If you're serious with macro, then you need to hunt down the Voigtlander 125mm (same league with Contax Zeiss 100mm Macro and Leica 100mm APO from what I heard). For macro work, unless still or document, i find 50mm is pretty darn close. And autofocus is non critical for macro so I would suggest to go with manual focus either to save money or to get more accurate result.

As for the 85mm, if you do mostly portrait work, then the FA* 85mm is best. I would go as far as saying it's the best 35mm portrait lens for any system. Otherwise, the 77mm limited is a better choice for distance work/general purpose use. The A* 85mm is arguably a little better than the 77mm but I don't think it would worth the premium price. Though if you check out 16-9.net, the A* can actually put up a good fight against the Canon 85/1.2.

From 24-70mm, I think the 3 FA limited should cover. You can add either a FA 50 (cheaper option) or a Nokton 58 for portrait with looser framing. I think the 43 or 31 is a much better choice for general purpose.

I don't shoot much above 105mm so I can't really vouch for any other lenses, but the Voigtlander 125mm and 180mm seem like excellent options.

For extreme wide, I would rather go with the Pentax 12-24 than the Sigma 10-20. This is just purely because the Pentax has better MTF, CA, Vignetting control (based on photozone data). However, Pete has provided such excellent demonstration, I guess Sigma would be the way to go.

Though, since you switched through many systems in the past, I would say if you really want to go to the extreme wide, Olympus offers excellent choices. But that would be beside the point.

I'm not making a living off photography, however, so weight is not really my major concern. However, if it's for you, then I would suggest the DA limited series in place of the FA limited instead. I, however, don't have any personal experience with the DA limited. Just from what I've read, they're not that behind from the FA limited quality-wise. They're also cheaper.

01-27-2008, 09:44 PM   #20
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Pentax curently offers the following macro lenses.

DA 35mm Macro Limited f2.8

DA F 50mm Macro f2.8

DA F 100mm Macro f2.8

I can vouch for the fact that both the 50 and 100 MF very well. I have no reason to expect the 35mm Limited will be any less pleasing to use.

Here's a link to all the current lenses offered by Pentax.

Pentax Digital SLR Cameras :: Lenses
01-27-2008, 09:52 PM   #21
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People are confusing my FF lenses with cropped form factor.

85mm on a FF is not the same as a 85mm on a cropped camera.
It is more like 135mm on the cropped camera, not what I want.

I will be using a 50mm/1.4 for my portrait lens. The same way I used a 50mm on my Minolta and Canon Cropped cameras. The same way I used a 85mm on my Minolta and Canon FF cameras.
01-27-2008, 10:05 PM   #22
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I'm aware that the 85mm on cropped sensor would be much tighter, but the FA* 85 is a very good lens. However, if you really need that 85mm equi., I would suggest the Nokton 58mm or the upcoming DA* 55mm. The 50mm is wider than what you would expect for the 85mm equi. Nevertheless, FA 50 is the best price/performance lens. I still wonder how pentax can price it so cheap for such fast, excellent AF lens.

QuoteOriginally posted by theedudenator Quote
People are confusing my FF lenses with cropped form factor.

85mm on a FF is not the same as a 85mm on a cropped camera.
It is more like 135mm on the cropped camera, not what I want.

I will be using a 50mm/1.4 for my portrait lens. The same way I used a 50mm on my Minolta and Canon Cropped cameras. The same way I used a 85mm on my Minolta and Canon FF cameras.
01-28-2008, 01:34 PM   #23
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The DFA 100mm macro is a fine lens, and got a good review in Amateur Photographer here in the UK, as did the 12-24mm.

If you want an ultra wide, go for the Sigma 10-20mm rather than the 10-17 fisheye. I did some checks before deciding on either, and went for the 10-20, due for better control of CA, and being more versatile. The Fisheye was a little too specialist and would not be in my bag as often. Mind you, once I save up more I might get one.

Also, remember that you dont have to get new for Pentax. I went to a second hand dealer here in Manchester and managed to get a fully manual Tamron 900mm F2.5 SP Macro, with a dedicated 2x converter, for the princely sum of 120. the optics were exceptional, with no fungus, and the results are superb.

A nice choice of lenses there, I hope you get a good 16-50 though due to reported QC issues.

Nice that you have joined the Pentax throng.

01-28-2008, 01:47 PM   #24
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I forgot, Flash,

I was at a flash workshop yesterday (surrounded by Canikon users) and my K10D and AF540 flash. I had no problems at all with the P-TTL, works a treat with the K10D. and the best thing? the Canon users had to plug in a wireless controller, yet I just switched on sorted the Flash to talk (straightforward - flash on hotshoe, switch on flash, switch on camera, half press shutter, remove flash from shoe, all talks.)

Metz I believe no longer makes a Pentax version, the tutor recommends the older Vivitar. So have a look at the auction sites, he has said that that the vivitar flash is the best you can get, better than some new flashes.
01-28-2008, 02:11 PM   #25
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For my kit, I'm just going for the DA 21/3.2 Limited, DA 35/2.8 Macro Limited, DA 40/2.8 Limited, and the DA 70/2.4 Limited. I have the F 50/1.7 coming, so that should cover low-light needs pretty well. Eventually, I'll add in the FA Limiteds and the DA* lenses, the 200/2.8, 300/4, 60-250/4, 55/1.4, 16-50/2.8, 50-135/2.8. To top that all off, the D FA 100/2.8 Macro and the DA 14/2.8. Yeah, it's a lot, but for the moment I just want the four DA Limiteds because that will cover most needs.
01-28-2008, 07:46 PM   #26
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I ordered some stuff last night.

K10D and Grip
10-17mm Pentax
50mm/1.4 Pentax AF
16-50mm/2.8 Pentax
40mm/2.8 Pentax


I still need to get the 50-135mm and a macro lens. I will probably get the 50mm/2.8 Pentax Macro or the Tamron 90mm/2.8 Di


I also need to figure out the flash...
01-28-2008, 08:12 PM   #27
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Do you want a dedicated macro lens ... or maybe save yourself cash ... and get extension tubes for your 50mm f/1.4 (which could be used on your other lenses as well).

Could work out handy.

I have the Tamron 90mm Di II SP macro .... and I can attest it is very sharp indeed ... also a very nice long portrait lens too.
02-02-2008, 07:06 PM   #28
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I have some of the lenses now... but no camera yet...

50mm/1.4 - No lens hood?? Nice and small compact lens compared to Canon
40mm/2.8 WOW nice and small... so I ordered the 21mm also
16-50mm/2.8 Smaller and lighter then the Canon - Lens hood is a joke
10-17mm Nice and compact for what it does, can't wait to try this one.
I bought the 1.7X AF adapter - to try with my Tamron 300mm
I ordered the K10D and Grip
2 fast 4gb SD memory cards to replace my CF cards

I went ahead and got the AF-540 - not sure how much I will use it. I really wanted to get the Metz, but with the rebate the Pentax was cheaper.

I need to get a K adapter for my Tamron 300mm/2.8

I need to buy the 50-135mm/2.8 also... Still looking.
The 55mm/1.4 will be on my buy list when it is released... really hope this one turns out good
02-02-2008, 08:14 PM   #29
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Regarding teleconverters, the AF 1.7 has the AF elements in the converter itself, so it will focus with Manual focus lenses. Pentax has a new teleconverter listed on their lens roadmap, but havn't released any info on it (magnification, price, availability) except that it will support SDM.
02-02-2008, 11:00 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by theedudenator Quote
Not sure on the Macro yet, are there DA versions?? Or I will just get a 50mm/2.8 macro
Possibly a 40mm pancake later on
Is there a 1.4X for the 50-135mm lens?? Think in the future??

I need to get a flash also, I like the Metz flashes, never used or read anything about the pentax flash.

The official pentax 'roadmap shows a aconverter' to be likely released this year
that will work your SDM lenses. do understand that a 50mm prime won't behave
like you are used to---because of the crop factor.

you can get a look at what's coming at : http://www.digital.pentax.co.jp/en/lens/roadmap.pdf

understand that pentax changed their dedicated flash system from a "TTL" to a P-TTL, and the latter is not widely supported by 3rd parties.
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