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01-24-2013, 08:28 AM   #1
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Tamron 17-50/2.8 or...

My parents bought me the Tamron 17-50/2.8 for Christmas. I had to REM due to the lens having a bad focusing problem that in camera fine adjustments couldn't fix. My new copy should arrive at my parents' house tomorrow afternoon and my dad will ship it to me at school. Hopefully I'll have it back by middle of next week

If the second copy of this lens is showing bad signs of focusing issues as well, I'm considering returning it to B&H and just getting the $500 credit and grabbing something else. My question is: What should this something else be, if I do decide to do this? I've been wanting to make the switch to primes for a while now, and am considering picking up 2 primes with the $500 credit. Would the DA-L 35/2.4 and the DA 50/1.8 be a good choice for this? I was considering grabbing the 35/2.4 with some of my own money I've earned as a wedding photographer assistant.

I like having the range of 17-50 available, and would likely still keep my 18-55 on hand for that reason, but I really am in need of something faster and sharper than what the kit lens can offer me. From what I've seen, both the 35/2.4 and 50/1.8 have great sharpness, and definitely are much faster than the 18-55. What are some other options I could consider staying with this $500 budget?

My main needs are:

1. Basic cataloging of events (Low light lectures, concerts, events, etc.)
2. Portraits
3. Children

01-24-2013, 09:27 AM   #2
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Why not wait and see how the new copy of the Tammy works out?

I've used mine a lot on the K-x, which doesn't have any official BF/FF adjustment.
For critical focusing, I found that contrast detect AF in live view, slow as it is, really hits the spot.

Another trick is to focus at 50mm, and then zoom out.

When you get it focused, it's a great lens.
01-24-2013, 09:29 AM   #3
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Yea, I'm definitely giving the new Tammy a try. I've heard great things about the lens, and from seeing how sharp my old copy was when focusing in live view, I really would like this one to work out! I still might snag the DA-L 35/2.4 just to have a solid prime to play around with. I'll let y'all know how the new copy turns out next week after I have a chance to play around with it.
01-24-2013, 09:56 AM   #4
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The Tamron 17-50/2.8 is a little quirky. I've had focus issues with it on my K-r as well, but I had no problems with the same lens on a K100D. I didn't have problems with the K-r and other lenses. When I switched the focus mode on the K-r to AF.S, the problems pretty much went away. AF.A was almost always choosing AF.C (continuous), and AF.C was guessing wrong. Just something you might want to try.

01-24-2013, 10:54 AM   #5
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I've never had a chance to play with the tam 17 - 50 2.8 but I do have the cheaper 28 - 75 2.8 that I use for events, it's the only zoom that I have in my arsenal, and the only reason I use it is because of how versatile it is. I'm a prime shooter myself, but doing events with a prime lens is quite a pain. Anyway the 35 2.4 is a good cheap prime; it's sharp and is a wonderful lens, I had one before but I ended-up selling it. I never had the chance to play with the 50 1.8, but seeing the reviews, and testimonials from other users, I would not hesitate to get it(And I love how that it has the rounded aperture blades, for those round bokeh highlights).
01-24-2013, 01:09 PM   #6
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Your stated needs sound like a good match for the FA77. Too bad it's a bit more expensive, though!

You could consider a Samyang/Bower/Rokinon 85/1.4 plus a DA35/2.4.

However, you eventually want to have a fast zoom as well. I built up a good collection of primes first, and I'm glad I did it that way. But in retrospect, I waited a little too long to add the DA*16-50 (purchased at the used price, of course). After you get a quality zoom you won't feel an urgent need to fill in all the focal lengths with primes.
01-24-2013, 01:16 PM   #7
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I'm not a huge fan of manual focus, honestly. I can't see very well through the K-r's viewfinder. The image seems kind of dim and I can't tell very well if it's in focus or not. My keeper rate with my ST 55/1.8 is probably like 10%.

The FA77 is a dream of mine to own. Maybe one day!
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