Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
01-04-2014, 08:54 AM   #1
Inactive Account




Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Leeds
Posts: 49
wanting to uprate from the standard 18-55 kit lens

time moves on and I need more reach than the 18-55 kit lens.

I'm fairly new to shopping around when it comes to lenses and would much rather have some advice my options.

so far I think the 17-70 and 18-135 are viable options. I do like the idea of the 18-135 as it is WR like my 18-55.

what about the 18-250 or 18-270? does the 18-135 have better image quality?

At the moment I have the 18-55 WR and the 50-500 bigma with the M50mm prime for general walking. I will be getting something like a pentax 12-24 or the sigma 10-20 for wide angle in the near future, but the lack of throw on the 18-55 is starting to bother me.

01-04-2014, 08:58 AM   #2
Emperor and Senpai
VoiceOfReason's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Nashville, IN
Posts: 5,121
I have the 18-135 and it seems to mostly live on my K5.
01-04-2014, 09:34 AM   #3
Site Supporter
rbefly's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Denver, Colorado
Photos: Albums
Posts: 2,030
First Stages Of LBA?

Hello Lancer,
What you're finding is a pretty normal experience for newer DSLR shooters; The limitations of a kit lens. Eventually, if you acquire some better lenses, the limiting factor will then become the camera body. Sorry, but it's true. More MP, faster burst rate, better high-ISO performance, more features or performance.
For now, most of the user reports and reviews say the 18-135 is a better lens overall than the 18-55mm, 18-250 and 18-270. It certainly will provide more telephoto 'reach' than the 18-55mm, if that's what you need.
But zooms generally, and superzooms especially, come at a cost. Slower max apertures, which means some other part of the exposure 'triangle' (Aperture, Shutter Speed, ISO) must be sacrified. For example, with the 18-135mm, you can now shoot objects farther away, say a bird in flight. The image will be larger, because the telephoto effectively magnifies the image.
But, the widest aperture you can shoot at (at full tele reach, 135mm) is f/5.6, the same max aperture as the 18-55mm at 55mm. If you bought a single-focal-length (Prime lens) 135mm f/2.8, you could take the same photo at f/2.8 (max aperture of the prime). This is two full f/stops faster (wider aperture) than f/5.6. What this means in real life is two stops faster shutter speed or two stops lower ISO, or perhaps, one stop of each. Lower ISO means less digital noise, better color rendition, higher contrast, better overall image quality. Faster shutter speed means less camera shake, ability to 'freeze' fast movement or action, less motion blur.
Which is why many of us have a mix of primes and zooms, for different purposes.
The 18-135mm sounds like a good solution for your needs right now. My point is that it probably won't be the ideal solution for everything you may want to try as your photographic interests develop and grow.
Good luck!
Ron
01-04-2014, 09:51 AM   #4
Pentaxian
MadMathMind's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Houston, TX
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,531
The Pentax 17-70 offers good image quality but a ticking time bomb with its SDM motor. Lots of people have reported failures just after the light 1 year warranty expired. It costs $200 to get it fixed, reportedly.

I have the Sigma 17-70 Contemporary. Superb lens. Its HSM motor has no reported problems. Compared to the Pentax, it has these upsides:
1) 3 year warranty
2) Reaches 2.8 at 17mm, 3.5 below 35mm, and whatever else I can't quite remember. The Pentax is a fixed 4 throughout its zoom range, so you only gain with the Sigma.
3) Looks nicer, will impress more people

Not sure how much you care about #3, though.

The downside is that it is not weather sealed. While unexpected rain can get you, unless you plan to shoot in bad conditions, you probably won't notice the lack of WR too much. Sharpness is better across the board, since 5.6 represents 1-2 full stops from the widest setting, where as it is always only 1 with the Pentax. I've found that sharpness at 6.3 (1.5 stops at <40mm or so) is fantastic.

01-04-2014, 10:08 AM   #5
Veteran Member
causey's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Arlington, VA
Photos: Albums
Posts: 3,758
QuoteOriginally posted by MadMathMind Quote
The Pentax 17-70 offers good image quality but a ticking time bomb with its SDM motor. Lots of people have reported failures just after the light 1 year warranty expired. It costs $200 to get it fixed, reportedly.

I have the Sigma 17-70 Contemporary. Superb lens. Its HSM motor has no reported problems. Compared to the Pentax, it has these upsides:
1) 3 year warranty
2) Reaches 2.8 at 17mm, 3.5 below 35mm, and whatever else I can't quite remember. The Pentax is a fixed 4 throughout its zoom range, so you only gain with the Sigma.
3) Looks nicer, will impress more people

Not sure how much you care about #3, though.

The downside is that it is not weather sealed. While unexpected rain can get you, unless you plan to shoot in bad conditions, you probably won't notice the lack of WR too much. Sharpness is better across the board, since 5.6 represents 1-2 full stops from the widest setting, where as it is always only 1 with the Pentax. I've found that sharpness at 6.3 (1.5 stops at <40mm or so) is fantastic.


How is the Sigma 17-70 C at the borders, compared to Pentax DA 18-55mm, if you don't mind? I hear it's has border softness at any aperture in the 17-24mm range. (Tried a copy of the Sigma 17-50mm, which had an AF problem, and found it optically great. I'm undecided between the two Sigmas...)
01-04-2014, 10:37 AM   #6
BWG
New Member




Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Monterey County, California
Posts: 20
I have the 18-135 and love it, for what it is. A very good daylight walk around lens. It's slower aperture makes it harder to use in low light.
01-04-2014, 10:57 AM   #7
Site Supporter
6BQ5's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Nevada, USA
Photos: Albums
Posts: 3,064
I have the DA 18-135mm WR lens. It's a good lens - very sharp, quick focusing, and good handling. The lens is heavy which makes it durable but also tiring to carry around all day. I like the zoom range. You can get nice wide angle shots at 18mm and crisp telephoto shots at the far end without the absolute need of a tripod. The bottom line is that this lens I versatile and of good value. Because of that it is a popular upgrade and somewhat in demand. That raises the price both new and used. I would not consider this lens inexpensive. Let me offer you an alternative. Check out some of the older used FA 28-105mm lenses. They are fair weather lenses (but somehow we managed in the weather back then), a bit limited in zoom range, and some have many plastic pieces in them but they are much more inexpensive, offer excellent color rendering, and are still plenty sharp for our cameras.
01-04-2014, 02:17 PM   #8
Veteran Member
sterretje's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Roodepoort, South Africa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,534
QuoteOriginally posted by MadMathMind Quote
2) Reaches 2.8 at 17mm, 3.5 below 35mm, and whatever else I can't quite remember. The Pentax is a fixed 4 throughout its zoom range, so you only gain with the Sigma.
No, you don't only gain. There are disadvantages to a variable aperture when using flash without pTTL. Having said that, the 17-70 Contemporary is high on my wishlist when I ugrade my wife's K100D to a K50(0).

01-05-2014, 02:36 PM   #9
Senior Member
scole's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Everett, WA
Posts: 216
I've been using an older copy of the Sigma 17-70mm since 2010 (bought it used off another PF member). Generally, I like it a lot & it's the third lens that's always in my bag (DA12-24 my primary & then DA55-300mm for tele). Is it soft in the corners? It took me a while to realize it but now I will say yes. Because it is F2.8 at the wide end, I've been using it for night sky landscapes and that's what finally made me realize it.

It is a zoom so there will always be trade offs. I'm looking to retire it from night shots whenever Sigma releases that 18-35 F1.8 lens but this lens will still be a mainstay in my bag for all other work. Living in the Pacific Northwest, I've used it constantly in rain & snow without any issues. Painfully, on New Years Day, the zoom ring broke so it's currently on its way back to Sigma for repair.
01-06-2014, 11:24 AM   #10
Pentaxian
MadMathMind's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Houston, TX
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,531
For those interested in the Sigma, see my reply for some sample photos vs. the kit lens (kinda) in this thread:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/10-pentax-slr-lens-discussion/247551-sigm...ml#post2639554

It's not a perfect comparison because I no longer have the kit lens in my possession. It was strapped to my old K110D and given away to a family member, after I upgraded to the K-5IIs and this Sigma.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
k-mount, kit, lens, options, pentax lens, slr lens, wr
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Q. about the kit 18-55 lens dmfw Pentax DSLR Discussion 8 03-27-2013 08:55 AM
going to the grand canyon armed with my k-30 and an 18-55 mm kit lens...any pointers? spectamaniac Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 48 02-27-2013 04:52 PM
Buying a K5 - but with 18-135mm lens kit? Or an 18-55 + 50-200mm lens kit? robinfaz Pentax K-5 12 06-04-2012 01:44 PM
need to replace my 18-55 kit lens... what should i get?? lguckert79 Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 9 02-22-2012 04:49 AM
For Sale - Sold: WTT Pentax 18-55 AL II kit lens for 18-55 AL kit lens + money wallyb Sold Items 2 11-11-2009 02:26 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:08 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top