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08-10-2013, 07:22 AM   #1
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Help a clueless newbie :)

Hey gang I have had a K200 for several years and I enjoy taking pics LOL I am just not that good My theory has alway been if you take enough pics you are bound to get a good one Well I have had the itch for a new lens I currently have the kit lens and a telephoto lens. I mostly shoot my kids both indoors and outdoors (our 8th trip to Disney is coming up) and I love macro shooting. All that said I am thinking a prime lens. At first I was thinking a DA 50mm f/1.8 but after reading it sounds like its not the best choice for indoors (to much zoom) so then I found a 35mm DA L F2.4 AL Lens but the first seems better for low light which I seem to encounter often. I know I should buy both but for now my budget allows one. Sooooo all this being said what do you experts think something totally different??? My budget is 300ish. Thanks for any pity you can take on me

08-10-2013, 07:47 AM   #2
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I think you would be better off with a used Tamron 28-75mm F/2.8. A prime isn't really ideal for a vacation situation.

Tamron 28-75mm F2.8 AF XR Di LD Macro SP Lens Reviews - Tamron Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

Something like this...

Tamron SP AF 28 75mm F 2 8 XR Di LD Macro for Pentax EXC 4960371004310 | eBay

If you really have your heart set on a prime, look for a used FA 35/2. They are really overpriced on evilBay right now, but you can find them for less than $400...

http://www.keh.com/camera/Pentax-Autofocus-Fixed-Focal-Length-Lenses/1/sku-AP06999048589R?r=FE

Last edited by boriscleto; 08-10-2013 at 07:55 AM.
08-10-2013, 08:01 AM   #3
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I agree, if you can only have one lens, the Tamron 28-75 is a great one. It's also a serviceable macro. It's not very heavy either.
08-10-2013, 08:02 AM   #4
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A Couple Options?

Hello Lookin4deer, welcome to the Forum!
I have a couple of suggestions for you, and I'm sure there will be others!
First, the DA 35mm f/2.4AL is a great all-around lens and will be an substantial upgrade in image quality from the kit lens in that focal length. The f/2.4 maximum aperture is plenty fast enough for lower-light work, I've used it hand-held in very dim lighting conditions with no problem. For a better idea of the uses and quality of this lens, I suggest you check out the 'Plastic Fantastic' thread on the Lens Club forum.
I also own the DA 50mm f/1.8. It is very sharp and fast, but would be tight in length for indoor use.
If you just want to stick your toe in the water with macro and also have a shorter, faster zoom with macro function, a great choice would be the F 35-70 f/3.5-4.5 zoom with macro function. These sell for $50-$70 used and are easily available on eBay and elsewhere. It would be a slight upgrade in I.Q. from the kit lens, faster, smaller, VERY fast AF and a 'starter' macro (actually, 'close focusing') lens.
Another idea; The DA 35 is starting to come down in price, you can pick one up (new) for under $200 it seems. And there is also a fine bargain macro (1:2 ratio, not 'true' 1:1, still very useful) that was made in two nearly identical versions. The Pentax FA 100mm f/3.5 Macro (about $150 used) and it's re-badged first cousin, the Cosina 100mm f/3.5 Macro (about $100 used). Except for the SMC coating, they're the same lens.
So, for roughly $300, you could get the DA 35mm f/2.4 and the Pentax/Cosina Macro, giving you a sharp, fast normal length prime and a good macro that can also be used as a 100mm telephoto.
Just some ideas for you, good luck!
Ron

08-10-2013, 08:19 AM   #5
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Although it's not a fast lens f4-5.6, I have had very good results using the Tamron 28-105 ( Tamron AF (IF) 28-105mm F4-5.6 Lens Reviews - Tamron Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database ).

It gives you a decent wide angle and medium telephoto with good image quality (at least with my copy) and it's fairly inexpensive. Autofocus is reasonable and it's not especially loud like some other lenses are.

At between $50 and $60 dollars used it's inexpensive enough that you could pick up a faster prime.
08-10-2013, 08:56 AM   #6
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I would try the DA 35 fantastic plastic. We did a Disney trip (our 4th) this spring and I used the DA 21 3.2 ltd almost exclusively around the parks. The only time I used a different lens was the 55-300 at Animal Kingdom.
With the prime you will have a nice light kit for walking around. It will change your perspective on pictures as you will need to zoom with your feet. That said, I looked at the parks completely different without a zoom lens. Even with a max aperture of 3.2 I had plenty of light even in the Hoop de doo review.
Buy the prime and have some fun.
08-10-2013, 09:19 AM   #7
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The 35/2.4 doesn't get the respect it deserves optically, it's a sweet little lens. I've done WDW many times and the 18-135 has been my walk around lens with the 35/2.4 in the bag for lower light. The 28-75 is a fine lens, is f2.8 throughout its range, is a wee bit wider and longer so it is more versatile, but it also costs more and is larger.
08-10-2013, 11:20 AM   #8
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It's safe to assume your budget is around $200 USD? I'd suggest the 35mm 2.4 and a set of cheap macro extension tubes from eBay. They'll turn your 35 macro when you want it. I got mine for less than $10. This way you get your prime, your IQ, your low light performance, and your macro within budget.

08-10-2013, 11:24 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by geomez Quote
It's safe to assume your budget is around $200 USD? I'd suggest the 35mm 2.4 and a set of cheap macro extension tubes from eBay. They'll turn your 35 macro when you want it. I got mine for less than $10. This way you get your prime, your IQ, your low light performance, and your macro within budget.
That's a good suggestion. He could also try a reverse ring for the 35/2.4 or for an inexpensive M50/2 and still have spent very litle for lots of versatility.
08-10-2013, 11:58 AM   #10
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Get the DA 35 2.4 and you could have the kit lens for a backup. Personally I shoot most of my vacation shots with a normal prime and don't find myself limited many times. I tend to carry a couple other Limiteds (15,21,70) in a small bag and rarely miss a zoom. The better IQ is a bonus and my primes are compact and light. I prefer to focus on quality more than being worried about needing every focal length covered.
08-10-2013, 12:31 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
That's a good suggestion. He could also try a reverse ring for the 35/2.4 or for an inexpensive M50/2 and still have spent very litle for lots of versatility.
The 35/2.4 is pretty much worthless reversed. There is no aperture ring.
08-10-2013, 12:48 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
The 35/2.4 is pretty much worthless reversed. There is no aperture ring.
Same problem with the extension tubes. Forgot about that little detail .
08-10-2013, 07:06 PM   #13
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For low light around $300, the Sigma 30/1.4 is a real winner. It's a stunning lens. However, close focusing is NOT it's strong suit. For a little more money, the DA35 Limited Macro is a nice compromise. Short enough to use indoors, f2.8 is OK indoors, but I don't know how good the K200 is with higher ISO. Also a true 1:1 macro, though you have to be practically touching the subject at 1:1.

With the Sigma, it will require focus adjustment. If your body doesn't allow focus adjustment, Sigma will do it for you.
08-11-2013, 06:59 AM   #14
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Thanks for the advice everyone it gives me a lot of info to go through.
08-11-2013, 07:47 AM   #15
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I'll chime in here since the reverse ring and extension tubes were ruled out.

If you really want to do "macro" with the 35/2.4, you could use a close up kit.

I know it will harm your optical quality, but they're super cheap (especially given the 49mm filter thread), and they do work.
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