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11-30-2012, 01:34 AM   #1
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Lens decision - help needed!!!

Hi All

Xmas time is approaching and I am planning to expand my lens line up. My current one covers wide area quite well with 10-17, 35, 16-50. Already for a while I have decided that I would need and upgrade to the longer end. But what puzzles me is - which lens to go. And this now becomes difficult.

What I would like to have is the lens that I could use for close ups, portraits, street and also some daily tele. I know there is no universal lens, but would like to find the best starting point.

1) DA* 50-135 2.8 - would cover most, add the flexibility, only bit lacking in tele side. But is the most expensive.
2) Sigma 70 DG Macro 2.8 - overall would suite very well according to reviews, but is limited on tele side. So probably not that much fun there.
3) Tokina 80-200 2.8 or Tamron 70-200 2.8 - overall coverage of the whole desired range, but might be too challenging for portraits due to size and weight. Also have no clue how these would work with close up shots.

last but not least…

4) Samyang / Walimex 85 mm 1.4 MF - definitely tempting lens. Would fit into my desired range. Very fast aperture, which is tempting, but I have no experinece with MF lenses. Also the cheapest of all.

Any comment about your experience which lens in range you have selected and why would be highly appreciated.

I am not a pro - just a guy who likes to make fun of making pictures - so even though I am not on very tight budget, I would still like to understand the benefit of spending high bucks

Maybe there some other option that I am not aware of?

Thanks
Superdavis

11-30-2012, 03:11 AM   #2
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I have a 50-135 and can happily recommend that, with good image quality, a useful range that covers portrait work quite nicely (although maybe a little short on the tele end) and a constant f2.8.
I'm looking at the 60-250 next, and will then decide whether or not it's worth keeping them both.
11-30-2012, 03:59 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by percy Quote
I have a 50-135 and can happily recommend that, with good image quality, a useful range that covers portrait work quite nicely (although maybe a little short on the tele end) and a constant f2.8.
I'm looking at the 60-250 next, and will then decide whether or not it's worth keeping them both.
Thanks Percy - I guess this is one of the best, but also one of the most expensive options.
11-30-2012, 04:17 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdavis Quote
Hi All

Xmas time is approaching and I am planning to expand my lens line up. My current one covers wide area quite well with 10-17, 35, 16-50. Already for a while I have decided that I would need and upgrade to the longer end. But what puzzles me is - which lens to go. And this now becomes difficult.

What I would like to have is the lens that I could use for close ups, portraits, street and also some daily tele. I know there is no universal lens, but would like to find the best starting point.

1) DA* 50-135 2.8 - would cover most, add the flexibility, only bit lacking in tele side. But is the most expensive.
2) Sigma 70 DG Macro 2.8 - overall would suite very well according to reviews, but is limited on tele side. So probably not that much fun there.
3) Tokina 80-200 2.8 or Tamron 70-200 2.8 - overall coverage of the whole desired range, but might be too challenging for portraits due to size and weight. Also have no clue how these would work with close up shots.

last but not least…

4) Samyang / Walimex 85 mm 1.4 MF - definitely tempting lens. Would fit into my desired range. Very fast aperture, which is tempting, but I have no experinece with MF lenses. Also the cheapest of all.

Any comment about your experience which lens in range you have selected and why would be highly appreciated.

I am not a pro - just a guy who likes to make fun of making pictures - so even though I am not on very tight budget, I would still like to understand the benefit of spending high bucks

Maybe there some other option that I am not aware of?

Thanks
Superdavis
Hi Superdavis

First of all to have a manuel or autof. lens not mean that your are pro or amat. Depends you. Some people enjoy with manuel some with af.
If you are beginner, suggest you with manuel. Manuel is not easy don`t forget it that. I have samyang 85 1.4. Sharpest lens I have ever used. Amazing quality also. But if you wanna take sports, racing etc. can be very hard with manuel.
You can make great praktise with manuel. It is very good price also.
If you take control with manuel, then you can choose easly. manuel or af. But learn manuel first.

11-30-2012, 04:38 AM   #5
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About the Sigma 70/2.8 I will add: excellent lens, but IMO a bit large for street (although it's the smallest of the three lenses you list), and sharper than desired for many kinds of portraiture (it is a dedicated macro lens, after all). It is an outstanding macro lens, but not necessarily a good match with your needs.

You might also consider the DA70 limited. Small hence unobtrusive for street and portraiture. I haven't used one, but from samples posted here it is an excellent portrait lens.

You've framed the choices well -- you will have to compromise. Decide what's most important to you, and consider whether you are better off doing it all with one lens, or getting a separate lens for tele work.
11-30-2012, 05:02 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nordlys Quote
I have samyang 85 1.4. Sharpest lens I have ever used. Amazing quality also.
Thx Nordlys for your comments. I have to admit that this lens is tempting for me because, I also want to learn and improve manual focusin rather thatn rely all the time for AF. I do not do sports or similar (excpect my 1 year old sun ). On which camera you use it and do you use original focusing screen or have you replaced that?

QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
It is an outstanding macro lens, but not necessarily a good match with your needs
Hi baro-nite
Rather that I would have been my first choice to go. It is good, decently prices and overall great IQ, but .. I am afraid that I will be stuck only to Marco with it as for portraiture this could be too sharp.

QuoteOriginally posted by baro-nite Quote
ou might also consider the DA70 limited.
yep, was looking at it as well and you remined me good point about it being small and light = perfectly fitting street and still good for protraits.
11-30-2012, 05:11 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdavis Quote
Thx Nordlys for your comments. I have to admit that this lens is tempting for me because, I also want to learn and improve manual focusin rather thatn rely all the time for AF. I do not do sports or similar (excpect my 1 year old sun ). On which camera you use it and do you use original focusing screen or have you replaced that?



Hi baro-nite
Rather that I would have been my first choice to go. It is good, decently prices and overall great IQ, but .. I am afraid that I will be stuck only to Marco with it as for portraiture this could be too sharp.



yep, was looking at it as well and you remined me good point about it being small and light = perfectly fitting street and still good for protraits.
Hi again superdavis
I am using K-5 and using original focusing screen. I don`t know what yo uare using as a body but if you have K-5, just trust it, It s like a rock.

And again, I suggest Samyang 85 1.4. Night shootin`...bang on! Don`t think that it s big, heavy. yes big and heavy.
Fe: I like street photografing and I have A 50mm F/2 . But I need af. I like to see people in the real life soo need af. I will buy Sigma 50mm 1.4 or FA 50mm 1.4 Havent decieded yet but I thing I gonna go to Sigma. It s terribly huge but I don`t care. people say sigma is very big, can`t use for street...bla bla bla.
Don`t listen soo much what people says, just go to market , take on your hand then you can say this one or that one.
Read the articles, reviews but last decision should be yours.
Nice day
11-30-2012, 06:10 AM   #8
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I own two of the lenses you are considering, the 85/14. and the Tamron 70-200/2.8. The 85/1.4 is an amazing lens but it is Manual Focus and can be a very demanding lens when it comes to wide-open focusing. It can take a good while to get just right but when I do, it's amazing The Tamron 70-200 is large physically, no doubt about that, but it is also sharp and has good colors. It's the only 70-200/2.8 that will close focus at 95 cm - which is darn close for such a large lens. The Tokina, which is a fine lens, has a minimum focus distance of 1.8 meters and is heavier. Given your setup I'd go with the Tamron if you need low light and telephoto or I'd consider the Pentax 55-300 if low light is not as big a consideration. Too many dismiss that lens because it is offered in kits from Pentax, but it is a very good zoom with serious reach on an APS-C camera. It is, however, a bit slow but is also MUCH smaller and lighter and costs <1/2 what the Tamron goes for these days. I have both the Tamron and the Pentax 55-300 and find that I use each in difference circumstances.

11-30-2012, 06:38 AM   #9
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Short Zoom?

Hello Superdavis,
Some good suggestions and advice so far.
I'll just throw another (very inexpensive) option into the mix, a walk-around and street lens that is a favorite of myself and many others on PF.
The Pentax F 35-70 f/3.5-4.5mm zoom.
This little gem is hardly bigger than a fifty prime, has very good sharpness, rendition, color and nearly the fastest A/F I've seen on a zoom. It features a "Macro" (close-focus) function on the 70mm end that's useful for those "one-lens" outings.
The crop factor makes this more like a 52-105mm, so it's really a short tele lens. It fills the gap between your 35mm, 16-50mm and (maybe?) a 70-200mm longer tele, which might change the choices you're facing.
All this for about $50.00 USD.
Here's a selection of various-type photos taken with the tiny wonder;
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/lens-sample-photo-archive/184051-f-35-70m...ur-photos.html
Ron
11-30-2012, 06:49 AM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by rbefly Quote
The Pentax F 35-70 f/3.5-4.5mm zoom.
Hey Ron
Great suggestion. To be honest when I switched from Sony/Minolta - 35-70 F4 Minolta was one of my favorite lenses. It was like you describe. Maybe it IS good idea to go for 70-200 and get this cheaper option to close 50-70 gap

QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
It's the only 70-200/2.8 that will close focus at 95 cm - which is darn close for such a large lens. The Tokina, which is a fine lens, has a minimum focus distance of 1.8 meters and is heavier
Hi Docrwm .. yes, I have been also looking to that - 95 mm is darn close for 70-200 lens could work good for some close ups. About 55-300 Somehow I feel that it IS nice walkaround lens, but lacks the bokeh and IQ when it comes to close ups & portrets. The extra 100mm are not that decisive for me.

QuoteOriginally posted by Nordlys Quote
I am using K-5 and using original focusing screen. I don`t know what you are using as a body but if you have K-5, just trust it, It s like a rock.
yes, I also have K5 - very very tempted - somehow I have a felling this will/could rock - only patient is needed with MF
11-30-2012, 07:03 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdavis Quote
Hey Ron
Hi Docrwm .. yes, I have been also looking to that - 95 mm is darn close for 70-200 lens could work good for some close ups. About 55-300 Somehow I feel that it IS nice walkaround lens, but lacks the bokeh and IQ when it comes to close ups & portrets. The extra 100mm are not that decisive for me.
I understand, if you want it for portraits and closeup then the 70-200 from Tamron is a very nice choice. I have several portraits with it that are outstanding. The 55-300 is also useful for full daylight sports, bum if the extra 100mm is not important and the cost is something you can manage then the 70-200 sounds like it fits you much better. If cost is an issue and you don't mind MF then you might look at some of the 135s - my M135 is small (very small), has a built in hood, is f3.5 and is a pleasure to shoot. There are lots of choices but I find the 70-200 to be a very flexible lens with its single drawback being its size and weight (although its a lot lighter than the Tokina). The 35-70 is a real gem of a lens and it has a Macro setting as well. A nice copy can go for as little as $40. I like mine but don't use it much as the range is pretty limiting and I have primes in the 35-70 range.
11-30-2012, 11:35 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
the cost is something you can manage then the 70-200 sounds like it fits you much better
I am always condsidering, that extra buck might be worth to spend if you really get what you want, rather than having lens that are "cheaper" but with no use.
Thanks for your advices, they are very useful
11-30-2012, 11:41 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by superdavis Quote
I am always condsidering, that extra buck might be worth to spend if you really get what you want, rather than having lens that are "cheaper" but with no use.
Thanks for your advices, they are very useful
Best of luck in finding the lens that best suits your needs.
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