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07-14-2013, 06:20 AM   #1
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Pentax Macro/Telephoto lenses for K-7

Hello to all,

Recently, I got Pentax K-7 and I'm truly impressed with that camera.
I also have Pentax 18-55 DA, 50-200 DA, Cosina 70-210 (Manual focus) and Tokina 28 (MF). That Cosina has Macro mode, but not 1:1, and with manual focus is quite hard for shooting Macro.
So, for all of you experienced photographers, I have question. Do you have any advice for Telephoto/Macro with AF lenses (70-300?) that would good choice with reasonable price? It hasn't be new. Also, what's best choice for wide angle landscapes?
Thanks in advance and best regards.

07-14-2013, 06:43 AM   #2
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Long + Short?

Hello SkipperRI,
First off, you seem to be using 'Macro' and 'Telephoto' as if they were the same or interchangeable; They're not.
A macro lens is a specific design (many times it's around 100mm, but not always, there are macro primes of 35mm, 50mm and even 200mm) made for close-up work. It can also function as a normal lens, but that's not the strong suit, it is a secondary function. Some are better than others at performing both functions.
If you're truly interested in macro photography, my best advice is get a Macro prime. You will never get great macro results using a telephoto zoom, that's generally a publicity designation made to sell more lenses.
If you don't mind manual focus and manual aperture control, a good bargain is the Pentax M 100mm f/4.0 macro. These can be found for around $100 USD and will yield very good results when used properly. As you look into more modern designs with auto features, the price goes up.
Another thing to consider is that even with an auto-focus macro prime, you will find yourself 'tweaking' the final focus with MF. Macro focus is a fine art and sometimes the AF will pick a point of sharp focus that doesn't agree with yours. A good after-market focusing screen is a great help for this problem. Even the best AF lenses need help occasionally with extreme closeup work.
Wide-angle primes are a little tougher to find; lenses of 24mm to 28mm focal range are available used for reasonable prices, but the wider you go, the more expensive things get. An older Pentax, Sigma or Miranda 24mm will cost about $150-$200, usually manual focus and auto aperture ('A' designation in Pentax) and occasionally you can find an auto-focus with auto-aperture lens, but it (again) will cost more. That's about as wide as you'll find for under $300, unless you're very lucky. You could also look into a qualiy WA zoom of 16-45mm, 18-50mm, used it will run $200-$300.
Hope this helps!
Ron

Last edited by rbefly; 07-14-2013 at 06:52 AM.
07-14-2013, 06:50 AM   #3
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Hey, Ron, thank you for detailed reply. I know that Macro and Telephoto are different "techniques", but there some lenses I found that have booth capabilities. What do you think about this:
http://pages.ebay.com/link/?nav=item.view&id=261244737413

And I prefer Auto Focus.
07-14-2013, 07:05 AM   #4
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Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 DL Macro Lens Reviews - Sigma Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

A Raynox might work better for you.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/lens-clubs/74221-raynox-macro-club.html

07-14-2013, 07:05 AM   #5
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Ummm...Not The Best

Hi Skipper,
That Sigma won't be much better (if any) than what you now have. I don't own this lens, but Sigma does make some good products. According to the Lens reviews here, this isn't one of them. 23 Pentax user reviews, overall score 6.55 out of a possible 10. You can do better for around $150-$200.
Another good deal is the Pentax FA 100mm f/3.5 Macro. The f/2.8 version is highly rated and the price reflects it. But a 1/2 stop slower f/3.5 version sells for much less and works very well. This is auto-focus, auto aperture and 1:1 magnification. I've posted many macro shots using this lens, but don't have the links handy.
If you want a general-use telephoto zoom, there are many available. But don't count on the 'macro' function as being anywhere near good enough. About the best zoom with macro function I've used is the Pentax F 35-70mm f/3.5-4,5. About $50-$60 USD.
Ron
07-14-2013, 07:09 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by rbefly Quote
Hi Skipper,
That Sigma won't be much better (if any) than what you now have. I don't own this lens, but Sigma does make some good products.
The DL macro in that eBay auction gets an average of 8.89 from 9 reviews here...there are many different versions of the Sigma Purple Monster.
07-14-2013, 07:13 AM   #7
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My Bad!

Thanks for the correction, Boris. I (obviously) looked at the wrong reviews!
Sorry Skipper, check out the link, this might be a good deal. I should be more careful.
Ron
07-14-2013, 07:17 AM   #8
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Thanks for the answer. Where can I get Raynox and what's the price?






QuoteOriginally posted by rbefly Quote
Hi Skipper,
That Sigma won't be much better (if any) than what you now have. I don't own this lens, but Sigma does make some good products. According to the Lens reviews here, this isn't one of them. 23 Pentax user reviews, overall score 6.55 out of a possible 10. You can do better for around $150-$200.
Another good deal is the Pentax FA 100mm f/3.5 Macro. The f/2.8 version is highly rated and the price reflects it. But a 1/2 stop slower f/3.5 version sells for much less and works very well. This is auto-focus, auto aperture and 1:1 magnification. I've posted many macro shots using this lens, but don't have the links handy.
If you want a general-use telephoto zoom, there are many available. But don't count on the 'macro' function as being anywhere near good enough. About the best zoom with macro function I've used is the Pentax F 35-70mm f/3.5-4,5. About $50-$60 USD.
Ron
Once again, Ron, your answer is great! Thanks a lot. According to you, this Sigma is not good deal?




QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
The DL macro in that eBay auction gets an average of 8.89 from 9 reviews here...there are many different versions of the Sigma Purple Monster.
boriscleto, yes, I see these reviews, and according to that, this Sigma is pretty fair.

07-14-2013, 07:21 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by rbefly Quote
Thanks for the correction, Boris. I (obviously) looked at the wrong reviews!
Sorry Skipper, check out the link, this might be a good deal. I should be more careful.
Ron
No problem, Ron. I was little surprised, because I read that review earlier, and then you scared me.
But, I'll look for that other lenses from your previous post.
07-14-2013, 07:23 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by SkipperRi Quote
Thanks for the answer. Where can I get Raynox and what's the price?
The Raynox comes in 2 versions the DCR-150 and DCR-250. It is a snap on corrected diopter. The 150 is around $70 and the 250 is around $75 on eBay.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/152336-cheap-macro-b...lose-work.html
07-14-2013, 07:29 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
The Raynox comes in 2 versions the DCR-150 and DCR-250. It is a snap on corrected diopter. The 150 is around $70 and the 250 is around $75 on eBay.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/152336-cheap-macro-b...lose-work.html
Boris, thank you so much for the tip! Based on your experience, should I go on that solution. With Raynox, AF working?
07-14-2013, 07:40 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by SkipperRi Quote
Hey, Ron, thank you for detailed reply. I know that Macro and Telephoto are different "techniques", but there some lenses I found that have booth capabilities. What do you think about this:
http://pages.ebay.com/link/?nav=item.view&id=261244737413

And I prefer Auto Focus.
Hi SkipperRi. I don't know what the magnification is on your Cosina, but the Sigma 70-300 is 1:2. According to the lens database, the same is true for Pentax M macros including the one mentioned above. Newer Pentax macros are 1:1. The Sigma macro mode only works at 300mm with a minimum focus distance of 5 feet. It is much easier to work with a shorter focal length like 100mm unless you know you won't be able to get any closer than 5' anyway. I may have a different variety of the Sigma 70-300, but I assume what I wrote is true for the one in the eBay listing as well. Your 18-55 DA focuses surprisingly close for a magnification of 1:3. You could probably experiment with that to give yourself an idea of how important the minimum focus distance is to you.
07-14-2013, 07:47 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by SkipperRi Quote
Boris, thank you so much for the tip! Based on your experience, should I go on that solution. With Raynox, AF working?
Maybe ask in the Raynox club. I don't have any direct experience with the Raynox, I use a manual focus Sigma 50mm macro (1:1) & the DA 55-300 at 300mm (1:3 or so). I have considered getting the DCR-150 for the 55-300 because that is my main walking around lens. (I mostly shoot birds these days)
07-14-2013, 07:50 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gaberlunzi Quote
Hi SkipperRi. I don't know what the magnification is on your Cosina, but the Sigma 70-300 is 1:2. According to the lens database, the same is true for Pentax M macros including the one mentioned above. Newer Pentax macros are 1:1. The Sigma macro mode only works at 300mm with a minimum focus distance of 5 feet. It is much easier to work with a shorter focal length like 100mm unless you know you won't be able to get any closer than 5' anyway. I may have a different variety of the Sigma 70-300, but I assume what I wrote is true for the one in the eBay listing as well. Your 18-55 DA focuses surprisingly close for a magnification of 1:3. You could probably experiment with that to give yourself an idea of how important the minimum focus distance is to you.
Thanks Gaberlunzi, for the answer. My Cosina is 1:4.

QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
Maybe ask in the Raynox club. I don't have any direct experience with the Raynox, I use a manual focus Sigma 50mm macro (1:1) & the DA 55-300 at 300mm (1:3 or so). I have considered getting the DCR-150 for the 55-300 because that is my main walking around lens. (I mostly shoot birds these days)
Boris, I'll try. Thank you. Your's Sigma is almost like this one on eBay. Difference is DA vs DL.
07-14-2013, 08:28 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by SkipperRi Quote
Thanks Gaberlunzi, for the answer. My Cosina is 1:4.


Boris, I'll try. Thank you. Your's Sigma is almost like this one on eBay. Difference is DA vs DL.
The 55-300 I have is the Pentax DA L 55-300. It does not have a macro switch like the Sigma.
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