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12-14-2012, 05:59 PM   #1
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10-20 mm Range, Any Use Other Than Landscape?

I should start off by saying that I don't do a lot of landscape shooting. As a matter of fact, I've probably taken less than 5 pictures of any type of landscape in the last year. I spend most of my time taking photos of people (portraits), food (the wife's baking), and sports (teams I coach). For a while now, I've been eyeing something in the 10-20 range. I don't know if this is just my LBA acting up again, or if it might actually be something I could use on a regular basis. In my head, I can probably do some really creative stuff with a lens like that, but spending a few hundred dollars for a lens that I might only use a few times doesn't sound too wise. Does anyone own anything in this range that they use for shots other than landscape? If so, anyone care to share?

This next part is kind of a mixed bag.

If something that wide wouldn't really suit me, then I'd rather get something else that can go a little wide (right now the widest lens I own is a Tamron 28-75 mm. I also have the 18-55 DAL, but that tends to stay on my wife's camera) but also give me more practical uses. I know I want to get a new lens in the next couple of months, but I don't know what to go with. I have also been debating the Pentax 18-55 WR, the 18-135 WR, and even the Sigma 17-50 2.8. I know this list doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but let me explain my logic (or lack thereof).

I just got a K-30, so I'd like a WR lens, however, I'm also pretty concerned about IQ. I hear really good and really bad things about both of the Pentax lenses I just mentioned, so I don't know if they're worth the investment. If they're not, the Pentax 16-50 is another option. I have noticed people don't really seem to recommend that lens very often, so I wonder if the Sigma 17-50 2.8 (I know it's not WR) would be a better choice.

Wow, this stuff is complicated. If only I had unlimited funds. I know someone will come through, thanks.

12-14-2012, 06:09 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by reivax Quote
I should start off by saying that I don't do a lot of landscape shooting. As a matter of fact, I've probably taken less than 5 pictures of any type of landscape in the last year. I spend most of my time taking photos of people (portraits), food (the wife's baking), and sports (teams I coach). For a while now, I've been eyeing something in the 10-20 range. I don't know if this is just my LBA acting up again, or if it might actually be something I could use on a regular basis. In my head, I can probably do some really creative stuff with a lens like that, but spending a few hundred dollars for a lens that I might only use a few times doesn't sound too wise. Does anyone own anything in this range that they use for shots other than landscape? If so, anyone care to share?

This next part is kind of a mixed bag.

If something that wide wouldn't really suit me, then I'd rather get something else that can go a little wide (right now the widest lens I own is a Tamron 28-75 mm. I also have the 18-55 DAL, but that tends to stay on my wife's camera) but also give me more practical uses. I know I want to get a new lens in the next couple of months, but I don't know what to go with. I have also been debating the Pentax 18-55 WR, the 18-135 WR, and even the Sigma 17-50 2.8. I know this list doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but let me explain my logic (or lack thereof).

I just got a K-30, so I'd like a WR lens, however, I'm also pretty concerned about IQ. I hear really good and really bad things about both of the Pentax lenses I just mentioned, so I don't know if they're worth the investment. If they're not, the Pentax 16-50 is another option. I have noticed people don't really seem to recommend that lens very often, so I wonder if the Sigma 17-50 2.8 (I know it's not WR) would be a better choice.

Wow, this stuff is complicated. If only I had unlimited funds. I know someone will come through, thanks.
A 20mm on APS-C can definitely be used for close-ups, but the problem is that with a zoom, you aren't going to get the best bokeh. The 15mm F4 is better for those kinds of things. Here are some samples of what people do with the 10-20mm, though:

Sigma AF 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC | Sample Photos for Pentax Cameras & Lenses - PentaxForums.com
Tamron SP AF 10-24mm F3.5-4.5 Di II LD Aspherical [IF] | Sample Photos for Pentax Cameras & Lenses - PentaxForums.com
Sigma 10-20mm F3.5 EX DC HSM | Sample Photos for Pentax Cameras & Lenses - PentaxForums.com

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12-14-2012, 06:30 PM   #3
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It's awesome inside places to get rooms in the shot! I found my Tamron 10-24 was awesome for that while I was looking at houses.
12-14-2012, 06:57 PM   #4
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I have a 10-17 and 12-24 and seldom use them for landscapes. Just get close to your subject (maybe not people) and make a nice composition.

12-14-2012, 07:12 PM   #5
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If you have a reasonably static landscape, panning and stitching with a 28 or 31 mm lens is the best way to go. 10-20 is great for interiors and groups of people. Don't be afraid to get close.
12-14-2012, 08:36 PM   #6
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Architecture and interiors...nuff said...

Portraits can be a bit problematic. I believe the term is volume anamorphosis? Think distorted features due to how a rectilinear lens handles natural perspective when you are VERY close to the subject. There is also the matter of freaking out your subject...


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12-14-2012, 09:08 PM   #7
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Ditto stevebrot's comment. Also check out the Sigma 8-16. It's a beauty.
12-14-2012, 09:44 PM   #8
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Groups of people, informally. Not posed portraits.

12-15-2012, 12:43 AM   #9
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Perspective!!

I believe your answer lies in considering perspective. Get close to something at 300mm then shoot the same target at 16mm and notice the difference IF the target is rendered at the same size.

The key to understanding FL difference is understanding the distance to the subject you shoot and the effect on the BACKGROUND and DoF that results.

Use a zoom lens. Fill the AF brackets with a subject in the fore ground at a long FL. Then duplicate that shot at a substantially wider FL.

It's not magnification, it's perspective!!!! And relative depth of field.!!! Explore the difference with the focal lengths you have available and compare for yourself.

12-15-2012, 05:50 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by reivax Quote
.... I know I want to get a new lens in the next couple of months, but I don't know what to go with....
Serious LBA. I'm sure most understand how it feels.

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Architecture and interiors...nuff said...
+1 Agreed, very useful for this stuff, and comes into its own when travelling.

QuoteOriginally posted by pacerr Quote
I believe your answer lies in considering perspective...
+1<<18mm starts giving wicked perspective, which can be fun to play with.

Some other general ideas: Star trails; Crowds/Street shots;

And perhaps one benefit that hasn't been mentioned, but can be handy, large very DOF at moderate f/stop

As @Professor Batty mentioned, static landscapes are sometimes better stitched from a normal lens. ie losing the wicked perspective component

If you haven't already looked at it, for ideas of what can be achieved, take a look at the Sigma 10-20 club at https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/lens-clubs/84539-sigma-10-20mm-club.html
12-15-2012, 09:29 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by reivax Quote
For a while now, I've been eyeing something in the 10-20 range. Does anyone own anything in this range that they use for shots other than landscape?
I use the DA 15 for general reportage.
If you're not used to wide angles, it may seem strange at first,
but unless you suffer from serious tunnel vision,
it actually captures pretty much what you see.
12-15-2012, 10:23 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
unless you suffer from serious tunnel vision,
it actually captures pretty much what you see.
This is a very interesting observation. Strangely though, what people see is not what they perceive! Some tend to view the world at a fairly narrow angle and others with a much wider view. I suppose that probably explains a lot of what happens in traffic


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12-15-2012, 10:24 AM   #13
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Well I have used 10mm fisheye for "macro":


(Believe or not, this is taken with 10mm fisheye)









This can produce interesting backgrounds as the FOV is so wide. This is sigma 10mm/2.8 fisheye, wide open at MFD or very close to it. EXIF most likely shows Sony NEX-C3 as I have used this PK fit lens on it with adapter as it has tilting screen.
12-15-2012, 10:40 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Strangely though, what people see is not what they perceive!
Very true, although one of the major benefits of photography is to help you perceive what you see.

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I suppose that probably explains a lot of what happens in traffic
That and cell phones.
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