Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
02-08-2008, 07:52 AM   #1
Veteran Member
dazman's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 1,950
In need of lens advice - Help me Obi-One

Hi All,

I’m new to the world of digital slr and have just put a deposit on my first d/slr (round of applause)…the Pentax K10D – more than enough camera for a newbie like me to learn the craft on. The camera is packaged with 2 lenses: Sigma 18-50 f/3.5-5.6 DC & Sigma 55-200 f/4.5-5.6 DC, at only AUD$195 extra than buying the K10D body only. However, after reading many photo magazines and posts on this site, I’m wondering if I should forget the package lenses and spend a bit more (not a lot more) on getting some better quality glass?? And if so, I’m finding there are TOO many options and which option is the best for me???...This is where I need your assistance.

What I’ll be taking photos of:
*I’ll be travelling in the near future – landscapes, cityscapes, people, night/low light
*When not travelling, same as above + some sports…will experiment with close up in the future
*I’d like the option of going up to 250-300mm, if needed…will need for sports and some travel.

One lens I know I want is an ultra wide angle. The Sigma 10-20 sounds like a winner over the Tamron (although slightly cheaper in Oz) and Pentax (too expensive). Any comments welcome

Now things get confusing for me.
My Options:
#1 - Package lenses stated above
#2 – Pentax or Tamron (w Macro) 18-250
#3 – Sigma 17-70 macro + Tamron or Sigma 70-300 macros
#4 – Tamron 17-50 + either above 70-300 or wait for the Pentax 55-300 DA
#5 - Wait for new Pentax 18-55 II and 55-300…only buying on good reviews
#6 –Any other suggestions you may have

I apologize for another “help the virgin slr user” post, but after reading through similar posts I was getting more confused. I wasn’t going to trust the salesperson at the store, as they seemed as confused as me. Money doesn’t grow on trees in my backyard (damn magic beans), so I want my first purchase to be a smart one, hence my seeking your help. I’d appreciate all and any advice.

All the best
Daz

02-08-2008, 11:19 AM   #2
Forum Member
TheWengler's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Brisbane, CA
Posts: 79
Landscapes - For this usually wide is the most desireable. You'll want to stop down to f/16 or f/22 for a large depth of field (DOF) so having a fast (read: large aperture) lens isn't really too important here. Tripods can also help a lot if you don't have ideal light.

Cityscapes
- Similar to landscapes but distortions of ultra wide zooms are a lot more noticeable in buildings than in landscapes. A prime might do more for you here.

People/Portraits
- For a single person portrait you'll want something that's between 50mm and 85mm and at least f/2.8. If there's multiple people in the shot or you don't want to blur the background as much then you use a smaller aperture (f/5.6 or something like that)

Night/Low light
- Ideally for night landscape type shots you'll need a tripod. If you just try to use a fast prime then you'll end up with a shallow DOF and lots will be out of focus. If you're taking shots of people at night then I'd recommend a flash. External flashes take quite a bit of work to perfect though. You also need to understand ambient light exposure first before you can understand how it works with a flash exposure.

My set up is a 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 zoom paired with a 50mm f/1.4. This gives me most of the coverage I need for now. I also have a Sigma 530 Super flash so that I can use my zoom lens indoors and a tripod so I can shoot low light landscapes.

EDIT: What is your budget?

Last edited by TheWengler; 02-08-2008 at 11:25 AM.
02-08-2008, 11:33 AM   #3
Forum Member




Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Alberta, Canada
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 85
My .02 (C$)

I'm not nearly as concerned with ultra wide now that I have switched to digital, although there are times when I still like it. For most times when I want a wide shot I'll take 2 or more overlapping shots and stitch them together with software. It's a piece of cake to do and you get the pano picture without the wide angle distortion.

You can see one I did up quick here and another here

They are both done with handheld jpeg output from a *ist DS, no tripod. The first one is 4 images stitched together and the 2nd is 3. Mind you there are times when a wide angle is more suitable and you don't neccesarily want a pano type picture.

cheers
02-08-2008, 11:41 AM   #4
Veteran Member




Join Date: Sep 2006
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,713
QuoteOriginally posted by TheWengler Quote
Landscapes - For this usually wide is the most desireable. You'll want to stop down to f/16 or f/22 for a large depth of field (DOF) so having a fast (read: large aperture) lens isn't really too important here. Tripods can also help a lot if you don't have ideal light.
I don't think that I've ever used anything higher than f11 for a landscape, and I've never seen anyone complain about the DOF I'm getting

I usually use a 28mm for them as well, although I've been known to use 35mm, 50mm, 55mm, and once even a 400mm lens.

02-08-2008, 11:58 AM   #5
Forum Member
TheWengler's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Brisbane, CA
Posts: 79
QuoteOriginally posted by little laker Quote
I don't think that I've ever used anything higher than f11 for a landscape, and I've never seen anyone complain about the DOF I'm getting

I usually use a 28mm for them as well, although I've been known to use 35mm, 50mm, 55mm, and once even a 400mm lens.
My descriptions certainly aren't all inclusive. It's a general summary to help someone who doesn't know what they need to look for in lenses to meet their needs.
02-08-2008, 02:14 PM   #6
Inactive Account




Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: London
Posts: 1,067
Hi Daz

My personal vote of confidence goes to:

#2 – Pentax or Tamron (w Macro) 18-250mm

As an all-round travel lens with maximum picture taking opportunities and minimal (i.e. zero !) lens swapping, I find it hard to envisage anything with as much inherent flexibility or practical focal length (28 - 375mm in equivalent 35mm film terms) & overall image quality for the money.
Try the link below which contains some images that I have taken with my Tamron 18-250mm.....I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions......

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/171724-post3.html

...and for an example of a macro photograph check this one out below. It's not 1:1 but quite acceptable IMHO !:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/136007-post15.html

Best regards
Richard

Last edited by Confused; 02-08-2008 at 04:13 PM.
02-08-2008, 11:20 PM   #7
Senior Member




Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 181
The Sigma 17-70 and 70-300 make an excellent kit to start with, they are both good lenses. The 17-70 is very sharp and a relatively fast lens, it has great overall image quality. The 70-300 is a great lens, thats sharp up until right at 300mm where it gets a little soft, the exception to this is the 1:2 macro at 300mm, which gives simply amazing results, that alone makes it a lens worth owning. Also, in my opinion, the image and build quality of the Sigmas are superior to the Tamrons.
02-09-2008, 05:10 AM   #8
Veteran Member
heatherslightbox's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Gainesville, FL
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,594
Have you thought about getting the current Pentax 18-55 kit lens? Since you mentioned that money doesn't grow on your trees (neither does it mine), what you could do is just get the body and then either go to the Marketplace on this forum or Fleabay and pick up a kit lens for $50 (US) or so plus shipping. The same could apply to a telephoto. While I don't have the kit lens, I've seen some impressive images taken with it. If you're lucky, you might be able to pick up both kit and tele lenses for $200 or so gently used.

The 18-250 is a good lens, if you tend to take more tele-type pics. I had one of these for a short while and one of the reasons that I got rid of it was that I wasn't too happy with the performance on the wide end (significant vigenetting when used with a UV filter). If you're on a budget, it's not the most cost-effective lens. It (or the Pentax version) runs $450-500 new while you can pick up both the kit and 70-300 brand new for $250 or less.

While I don't have the 50/1.4 myself, I do know it does a good job with low-light, and for around $200, you can't beat it with a stick.

HTH,
Heather

02-09-2008, 05:21 AM   #9
Senior Member




Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Perth Australia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 293
I am also new to DSLR - but a lifetime with film.
Bought K100d with 18-50 kit lens and spent the next few weeks looking at the FL of my photos and noting the occasions when I wished I had more or wider reach.
Kit lens is back in the box for when I trade the body up.
Day lens is now Tamron 18-200 and indoor/evening outdoor lens is Sigma 28-70 constant f2.8 EX DF (full frame). The sigma f2.8 zoom easily makes my 50mm f2.0 Pentax A lens from the film body redundant.
Garth
02-09-2008, 05:54 AM   #10
Veteran Member
roentarre's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 11,794
QuoteOriginally posted by TheWengler Quote
My descriptions certainly aren't all inclusive. It's a general summary to help someone who doesn't know what they need to look for in lenses to meet their needs.
Diffraction kicks in after f8 and all the MTF charts for most lenses do deteriorate badly after f8

On a film SLR, I would use f32 for all the landscape shots
02-09-2008, 07:11 AM   #11
Veteran Member
lapeen's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: bangor, maine
Posts: 379
I vote #2. But I would add in the Pentax AF 50mm 1.4 for low light, crisp portraits and compact size.

Money does not grow on trees here in Maine either So I started out with the kit lens, and then bought some M and A prime lenses to save $$. I only ended up spending MORE money (that I will be able to get back when I sell the Ms and As, but that's not the point ) because I really missed having the AF and ended up buying the Pentax 18-250, and 50mm 1.4 anyway.

NOW I am satisfied and very happy with the contents of my camera bag
02-09-2008, 11:12 AM   #12
Forum Member
TheWengler's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Brisbane, CA
Posts: 79
QuoteOriginally posted by roentarre Quote
Diffraction kicks in after f8 and all the MTF charts for most lenses do deteriorate badly after f8

On a film SLR, I would use f32 for all the landscape shots
so you never go past f/8?
02-09-2008, 11:51 AM   #13
Inactive Account




Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: London
Posts: 1,067
Hi Lukas

Re your question:
QuoteQuote:
so you never go past f/8?
Well, it's not something I'd admit to in polite society and if the wife ever found out, I'd be in serious trouble.....LOL !!

Best regards
Richard
02-09-2008, 12:12 PM   #14
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Bronx NY
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 5,599
Check out the Zenitar 16mm for the ultra wide

QuoteOriginally posted by dazman Quote
Hi All,

*snip*

One lens I know I want is an ultra wide angle. The Sigma 10-20 sounds like a winner over the Tamron (although slightly cheaper in Oz) and Pentax (too expensive). Any comments welcome


All the best
Daz
Hi Daz
I can heartily recommend the Zenitar 16mm F2.8 fisheye for your ultra wide. Yes it has fisheye distortion, but it's fairly mild and with careful framing and cropping you will hardly know it's there. Of course if you want it the same applies, with careful framing it's "fishyness" is readily apparent. Besides being relatively inexpensive the Zenitar is a FUN lens to have.

If you can find it down in Oz I'd recommend the Pentax 18-55 kit lens. There are some drawbacks to it, (slow, some vignetting and distortion, and flare prone) but it has decent IQ and it a great buy for the money. Leastwise up here in the states. Even tho I have a whole bunch of lenses, I still use mine from time to time, and you can't beat the price.

NaCl(look seriously at the "Z" it's a blast to use)H2O
02-09-2008, 08:43 PM   #15
Veteran Member
dazman's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 1,950
Original Poster
Thanks to everyone for your advice. It has helped (option #2 leading the way) and has given me another lense to include...Pentax 50mm 1.4.
Regards
Daz
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
future, k-mount, lenses, macro, option, options, package, pentax, pentax lens, sigma, slr lens, tamron
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Lens advice SebastianP Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 6 10-20-2010 10:44 AM
Advice for lens please fekish Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 9 09-12-2010 08:44 AM
lens advice bsod Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 19 06-05-2009 09:08 AM
Need advice on a lens robcap13 Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 11 03-04-2009 06:33 AM
Lens Advice please... Amanda Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 9 11-14-2008 04:17 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:03 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top