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09-07-2012, 12:18 PM   #16
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I just picked up the 18-135 for my K5 and it exceeded my expectations for picture quality, sharpness, and quick focusing. I would either wait for the 18-135 to become available, if not too long, or pick up the 18-55WR to get your feet wet, so to speak, and find out what focal lengths you prefer before delving into the primes.

09-07-2012, 06:49 PM   #17
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Highly recommend you 35mm f2.4 AL. This lens is a real gem with that price !!!
09-07-2012, 07:13 PM   #18
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I don't own the DA35/2.4, but by all accounts it is an excellent lens in every regard, and a very useful focal length on APS-C. I doubt you will tire of it in a hurry.
A weather resistant zoom will be very useful in NZ, but I would wait for the 18-135 instead of getting the 18-55 up front.
09-07-2012, 07:16 PM   #19
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If you want a great starter lens, i would bypass the 18-135 weather sealed lens from pentax, i have read several bad reviews on it. In my personal experience i would choose a tamron 28-75 2.8 xr di lens. Although it is not weather sealed it will give you image quality right up there with some of the best lenses made, this is a super super lens for the price, 500 new us currency. i find i get bored with a prime lens and always wishing i had a little more zoom when i have them on my camera for a long period of time. you can read a million reviews on this lens and 999,000 or more will be very favorable. i do not think many will argue with me on this.

09-07-2012, 08:08 PM   #20
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I recently got the K-30 with the 18-135 and it exceeded my expectations also, I couldn't pass up getting that WR lens at the discounted kit price. But if you can't wait, the 35/2.4 is really good, although not WR. I have not owned the 18-55WR, just the DA 18-55mm AL, which was a solid lens but nothing special. The only con with the 35/2.4 is that they do not include a hood, so you need to add that also. You can get 49mm hoods very cheaply on ebay or from some camera stores.
09-10-2012, 02:41 AM   #21
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I bought a kit lens the good old 18-55, but got a good deal on a m 50 1.4 shortly after. The M lenses are really fun to use, super sharp and in some instances relatively cheap. Definetley try out some older prime options.
09-10-2012, 05:04 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by ramseybuckeye Quote
I recently got the K-30 with the 18-135 and it exceeded my expectations also, I couldn't pass up getting that WR lens at the discounted kit price. But if you can't wait...
Ditto, except I'd suggest the Tamron 17-50 2.8 (non VC, as it is smaller and cheaper).

The Tammy and the 18-135 are the two lenses I use most, with the former being my go-to indoor and night time lens, and the latter being my outdoor daylight lens.

I don't know what it would cost in NZ, but in HK I paid (actually my wife, it was a present) only about US$300:

Tamron SP AF17-50mm F/2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical [IF] (A16) - Lens ?? - ???? - ????? Price.com.hk
09-10-2012, 07:31 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by sahale Quote
I would wait for the 18-135 WR. It's weather resistant, covers all focal lengths you would generally need, and it's a lens you intend to buy anyways, right?

After you get the 18-135 and get to taking some pictures, check the EXIF data on the photos and it will show you what focal length you used to take that picture. Find the focal length you use most often and buy a prime based off of that.

I'm no expert, but that's what I would do.
I second sahale's advice. The store should restock on the K-30 + 18-135mm kit shortly (it's probably the one that sells more I think), and it's better place to start. And even as you evolve in photography and dip your fingers in primes (it's a wonderful journey ) a 18-135 will always be useful as a travel lens. Sometimes you and only bring one lens and a good zoom is very nice in these situations.

09-10-2012, 09:02 AM   #24
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One more vote for the 35/2.4 - for me a 50 would be too narrow as an only lens. I find 35mm to be a good all round focal length.

Buying a used 18-55 is also an option. You should be able to sell it later with little or no loss.
09-13-2012, 04:02 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by DSims Quote
The K-30 is a solid choice. I think I'd be happy to trade my K-5 for one right now.

However, I have to tell you that I started out as a beginner with the K100D Super that I bought new (closeout price) for about $200. It wasn't long until I bought a lens (FA 24-90/3.5-4.5) that was more expensive than the camera. It stayed that way when I sold it to get a K200D, then added a K-x. It was only when I bought the K-5 that I had a more expensive camera again.

I think I'm less satisfied with my K-5 than most people on this forum. That's because I saw little difference in the quality of my images when I sold my K-x to get it. And the reason for that was simple - I'd spent my money on quality lenses, so the camera body made little difference. Now my K-5 is worth less than half what I paid for it. I knew this would happen when I bought it, but it still hurts.


I'm still happy to shoot with my K200D, because I have the better lenses. But take away my quality lenses, and I don't care how good a body you give me - I'll be very frustrated!


If you can get a good bundle price with the K-30, then fine. But if you can save substantial money buying a K200D, K10D, or better, then consider it.



As a beginner, I think you'll appreciate the range of something like the DA18-135. Once I got the FA24-90, the DA18-55 just didn't get used anymore. I really liked having the longer 90mm end. Pentax has said they'll have an ~18-200 this year, and most people expect it to be ready about now and formally announced in the next week or so (but give up to a month or two to see it in stock). It's difficult to say you should buy today when so many announcements are due in the next 2 weeks. But I think you'll still want a Pentax, and quite possibly the K-30 as well.



So my advice is to skip the 18-55. Get the 18-135 or a similar lens with whatever affordable body you can. Then seriously consider getting some other reasonably priced lenses. Here are some of my favorites, all of which I still own (even though I have "better" lenses - because these are still almost as good):

A24-50/4 (or F version for AF)
A100/2.8 (or M version to save money and get used to manual aperture)
A50/1.7
Cosina 100/3.5 macro (listed on this site and sold under many brands)
F70-210/4-5.6 (or Takumar version (the one I have) - only half the price and just as good much of the time)


You can add the DA35/2.4 to this list. Consider the DA50 as well. Forget the DA40 unless you want the small size.
I will come back to this post in the future to check out all the lenses you recommended as I exit my "beginner phase." Thank you for your advice!

QuoteOriginally posted by ChooseAName Quote
The only lens mentioned here that I have personal experience with is the 35/2.4. But I did want to add that I came in to SLR photography using only the FA 50/1.4 for a year. So getting into SLRs with a prime is do-able. However, my main photographic subject was my baby (at the time) daughter, so not much movement for a while.

If you were going to consider a prime, I think it would depend on which of your interests you were most interested in. For sports high shutter stuff with your dog, I think the 50/1.8 would be the better choice of the three primes you listed; 50mm is the longest of the three, and the max aperture of 1.8 will help you get faster shutter speeds.

I don't believe any of the three primes are technically macro capable, but as an owner of the 35/2.4, I will say that that lens renders subjects very sharp up close, and not quite as sharp farther out (may be true of most lenses, I think). I've been pleased with closeups I've taken with that lens. I've attached a heavily cropped example.
Thank you for your advice, I think the general consensus on this post and in general is that it's fantastic!

QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
although many people complain about kit lenses being cheap etc, when you consider the trade off of $/performance, a kit lens is often the best buy you can ever make.

I would second the suggestion to get the 18-55 WR

as a first lens it lets you play enough to reinforce the things you have read over the past 6 months on exposure, and to become competent with the technical aspects of photography and with your camera. the range of focal lengths is a little limited, and you still may end up getting the 18-135, but at least you can start.

this is important before going out and buying a bagful of primes.

take your time, learn what you like , dont like, and what you need in terms of focal lengths first with the kit lens, and then get the specific primes you want.

I often recommend thinking about covering 10-200mm with 3 zooms, (i used to say F2.8 but with todays high ISO perhaps F4 is OK) and experience all aspects of photography. then, and only then, start into primes at the focal lengths you really like..
I completely understand and believe that the 18-55 will not be a limiting factor to my ability to begin with and probably for some time after that. The only reason I am trying to stay away from it is because I think it will be economically inefficient for me to purchase it and have it sit on the shelf later after purchasing the 18-135 WR due to inability to sell it. I appreciate your advice!

QuoteOriginally posted by Pablom Quote
YES! Absolutely!

being your only lens you will probably prefer a focal lenght that is considered 'normal', around 35mm.



It will be limiting in terms of focal length range, but in the same way you might find the all purpose zoom limiting in IQ, low light capability and depth of field control. It is for you to decide what is it your willing to trade off. There is always a trade off.
I gathered this lens (and that focal length) is very good for a general walk-around prime, and have seen the term "the plastic fantastic" thrown around too! This will be one of my first few lens purchases I am certain!

QuoteOriginally posted by loco Quote
Welcome and I think you'll love the K-30! It's my second Pentax and a big improvement over my K-r, which was already a very good little camera.

I think since you really seem to want a walkaround lens, you should get the 18-135, but it seems you are in a hurry. If you can't wait for the kit to come back in stock, go ahead and get the 18-55 WR. It'll give you the ability to take advantage of the weather resistance of the K-30 and also give you some versatility while you are learning more about photography and getting comfortable with your new camera. The 18-55 is not a bad kit lens at all. A few of my very favorite shots were taken with the older version of it., which isn't even as good as the WR version.

If you get a prime to start with, that's fine. But the conventional wisdom is to get an idea of what focal lengths you like to shoot at and aim at primes in that range. Good luck and I know you'll love the K-30, no matter what lens(es) you end up with!
Not so much of an actual hurry, more due to the fact I have used up all my patience through months of anticipation! :P I am aware that the 18-135 is the better buy which discourages me from purchasing the 18-55 WR :/.

QuoteOriginally posted by msatlas Quote
I vote for the DA 35/2.4. It's a great, great lens to start with. Very sharp right from wide open, and has a field of view similar to 50mm lenses on 35mm film/full-frame digital. 50mm lenses were the kit lenses back in the day.

I just upgraded from the 35/2.4 to the FA 35/2 which is optically very similar, but costs almost double. The DA is a steal at how cheap it is.
Thanks for your advice!

QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
I would second that opinion. It's a lens you can use all day. Sure, you might miss some bird shots or a superwide landscale but it doesn't take long to see shots you can take. The lens is good enough to use for a long time as an addition/complement to the 18-135.

The 18-55 WR is a fine lens but a lot of us have one that's been replaced by something else. I think it makes more sense to wait for the 18-135 so you don't immediately face this redundant lens problem.

QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
While I agree to some extent on the 18-55' maybe there is another approach. Get the body and an older 18-35 for about $40 used. At that price who cares if you replace it, and it isn't all that bad, compared to some other $40 offerings out there

I picked up the 18-55 and 50-200 as a pair for $90, just to have a light weight set of lenses for my daughter to use with one of my spare bodies, without being burdened by a bunch of primes or The weight of a few F2.8 zooms to conver the same length. You can explore an awful lot with that pair, while refining what you really need, and in the end, I bet you will save money, just by avoiding one wrong focal length purchase
I have taken your advice in, the only reason I am not venturing into other lens choices is because the weather resistance is a quality I am after- not that I am some sort of Bear Grylls running around splashing in mud and sleeping in torrential rainfall on a daily basis, but rather to provide me with the peace of mind. As well as you can never plan for the weather here, and one thing we do around here is try and not let the weather stop us from doing anything! :P

QuoteOriginally posted by rbefly Quote
Hello Mr008, Welcome to the Forum!
An interesting dilemma, about to get a camera body but no lens...yet.
One thing that's pretty clear to me, and has been voiced by several posters here, is that if you listen to the inner urge and get the "available now" lens, the 18-55mm, you'll tire of it, sooner or later. Most of us started with the kit lens and later gave it away, shelved it or sold it off.
It is a very good kit lens. Period.
But if you get a good prime lens now, and later get the 18-135mm, ANY prime will be redundant, unless it's a 15mm or 200mm.
Or at least, seemingly so. Primes are never really excess baggage. They are (virtually always) sharper, faster, lighter, smaller, better in any measurable way, than a zoom set at the same focal length.
Say you wander upon a breathtaking scenic view. Landscape, city view, ocean scene, whatever it may be. You have the 18-55, the 18-135mm and the 35mm f2.4AL with you. By looking through the viewfinder with a zoom, you find the perfect composition is framed by a 39mm setting. What lens to you use?
Right! So the 35mm wasn't redundant at all.
Now, I realize the "perfect" composition might just as easily be 23mm or 71mm. In that case you'd use a zoom.
But you might also consider getting a wider prime or a longer prime. For next time. Happens to everyone.
Take a look at the thread "Plastic Fantastic" here on the Forum. The 35mm f2.4 AL is one of the best all-around primes going and is inexpensive.
Face it, you're going to end up with several lenses anyway. We are talking about interchangable lens cameras, after all. May as well start off with a great one!
JMO,
Ron
I am happy to see my worries are not baseless! I am worried about potentially "wasting" my funds dedicated to this hobby on a lens I already know now I will be wanting to replace (18-55 WR). The 18-135 seems like the better purchase on all grounds. As for my primes roadmap, I am putting the 35mm f2.4 AL on my wishlist . Thanks for your post!

QuoteOriginally posted by sahale Quote
I would wait for the 18-135 WR. It's weather resistant, covers all focal lengths you would generally need, and it's a lens you intend to buy anyways, right?

After you get the 18-135 and get to taking some pictures, check the EXIF data on the photos and it will show you what focal length you used to take that picture. Find the focal length you use most often and buy a prime based off of that.

I'm no expert, but that's what I would do.
Thanks for the advice, that's a good way to analyse my shooting style and definitely something I should do.




So Pentax Singapore got back to me and said they do not have information on when their 18-135 unboxed lens will be back on stock. This means I have to look elsewhere if I want to purchase this lens. I know eglobal (the HK based online retailer) are selling it for about the same price, is it a "relatively" safe bet (gamble) to purchase it from them? I understand they have issues with following up on warranty, I will purchase my camera body from Pentax Singapore, but is the 18-135 prone to issues? I am trying to convince myself I will get the lens (and that it won't be a refurbished one) and will hopefully not have to deal with them again (about that particular lens).


Do not worry, I will not hold you accountable: would you purchase it from them? -Because otherwise I cannot purchase that lens atm and will have the 'settle' for another (be it the 18-55 WR from Pentax Singapore or another).


Thank you to all those that replied, sorry I took time to get around to responding, I was neck-deep with uni work!

Last edited by Mr008; 09-13-2012 at 04:56 AM.
09-13-2012, 05:07 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by lenic Quote
I just picked up the 18-135 for my K5 and it exceeded my expectations for picture quality, sharpness, and quick focusing. I would either wait for the 18-135 to become available, if not too long, or pick up the 18-55WR to get your feet wet, so to speak, and find out what focal lengths you prefer before delving into the primes.
QuoteOriginally posted by Omnis Quote
Highly recommend you 35mm f2.4 AL. This lens is a real gem with that price !!!
QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
I don't own the DA35/2.4, but by all accounts it is an excellent lens in every regard, and a very useful focal length on APS-C. I doubt you will tire of it in a hurry.
A weather resistant zoom will be very useful in NZ, but I would wait for the 18-135 instead of getting the 18-55 up front.
So 18-135 and the 35 prime are on my lens-purchases roadmap! Thanks for the input guys!

QuoteOriginally posted by eastkywildlifeman Quote
If you want a great starter lens, i would bypass the 18-135 weather sealed lens from pentax, i have read several bad reviews on it. In my personal experience i would choose a tamron 28-75 2.8 xr di lens. Although it is not weather sealed it will give you image quality right up there with some of the best lenses made, this is a super super lens for the price, 500 new us currency. i find i get bored with a prime lens and always wishing i had a little more zoom when i have them on my camera for a long period of time. you can read a million reviews on this lens and 999,000 or more will be very favorable. i do not think many will argue with me on this.
I will check out the lens and read up on it, unfortunately though, WR is a quality I am after!

QuoteOriginally posted by ramseybuckeye Quote
I recently got the K-30 with the 18-135 and it exceeded my expectations also, I couldn't pass up getting that WR lens at the discounted kit price. But if you can't wait, the 35/2.4 is really good, although not WR. I have not owned the 18-55WR, just the DA 18-55mm AL, which was a solid lens but nothing special. The only con with the 35/2.4 is that they do not include a hood, so you need to add that also. You can get 49mm hoods very cheaply on ebay or from some camera stores.
Will look into it, thank you, my previous post indicates my current dilemma with placing my order.

QuoteOriginally posted by EJMzagsfan Quote
I bought a kit lens the good old 18-55, but got a good deal on a m 50 1.4 shortly after. The M lenses are really fun to use, super sharp and in some instances relatively cheap. Definetley try out some older prime options.
QuoteOriginally posted by Unsinkable II Quote
Ditto, except I'd suggest the Tamron 17-50 2.8 (non VC, as it is smaller and cheaper).

The Tammy and the 18-135 are the two lenses I use most, with the former being my go-to indoor and night time lens, and the latter being my outdoor daylight lens.

I don't know what it would cost in NZ, but in HK I paid (actually my wife, it was a present) only about US$300:

Tamron SP AF17-50mm F/2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical [IF] (A16) - Lens ?? - ???? - ????? Price.com.hk
Thanks for the input guys, I am looking for WR as my immediate purchase, but later all those suggestions will become more relevant. Out of interest, how does the Tamron you guys suggested compare with the sigma 17-70?

QuoteOriginally posted by luizpaulo Quote
I second sahale's advice. The store should restock on the K-30 + 18-135mm kit shortly (it's probably the one that sells more I think), and it's better place to start. And even as you evolve in photography and dip your fingers in primes (it's a wonderful journey ) a 18-135 will always be useful as a travel lens. Sometimes you and only bring one lens and a good zoom is very nice in these situations.
The only issue is that they seem to have taken the 18-135 unboxed option off their list of available items. At the current stated price for the 18-135 it is a bit expensive for me. Please see my new dilemma in the post above and let me know what you think about going through with a purchase from eglobal :S.

QuoteOriginally posted by savoche Quote
One more vote for the 35/2.4 - for me a 50 would be too narrow as an only lens. I find 35mm to be a good all round focal length.

Buying a used 18-55 is also an option. You should be able to sell it later with little or no loss.
Thanks for your input!

My new dilemma:
"So Pentax Singapore got back to me and said they do not have information on when their 18-135 unboxed lens will be back on stock. This means I have to look elsewhere if I want to purchase this lens. I know eglobal (the HK based online retailer) are selling it for about the same price, is it a "relatively" safe bet (gamble) to purchase it from them? I understand they have issues with following up on warranty, I will purchase my camera body from Pentax Singapore, but is the 18-135 prone to issues? I am trying to convince myself I will get the lens (and that it won't be a refurbished one) and will hopefully not have to deal with them again (about that particular lens).


Do not worry, I will not hold you accountable: would you purchase it from them? -Because otherwise I cannot purchase that lens atm and will have the 'settle' for another (be it the 18-55 WR from Pentax Singapore or another).


Thank you to all those that replied, sorry I took time to get around to responding, I was neck-deep with uni work!"

Last edited by Mr008; 09-13-2012 at 06:15 PM.
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