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01-21-2007, 10:21 PM   #1
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mm versus $$$

First note: We do professional photography with our Pentax cameras. Weddings, Events and Portraits.

Second note: I second-shoot for my husband, as I am training. His primary camera is currently the *ist-D. My primary camera is currently the K100D (previously *ist-DL). We are hoping to eventually get the K10D.

I am getting highly frustrated at sharing lenses in our arsenal. We have ONE Tokina 28-70, 2.8 lens which Joe needs more. I am also getting highly frustrated at the amount of "out-of-stock" lenses everywhere I look.

I think I need to duplicate the 2.8 lens above at the very least. Here are the choices I found available tonight.

Sigma 24-70, 2.8 - $429

Sigma 28-70, 2.8 - $329

Tamron 28-75, 2.8 - $379 - $10 Rebate = $369

I do tend to prefer getting "tighter" compositions, while Joe tends to get "wider" compositions. In situations like this weekend, where we are working in a multi-room party (baby shower in someone's home), the 70-300 lens is useless. Yet, at times, I do wish for a little more tighter than the 28-70 allows. That would point me in the direction of the 28-75. So would price.

I would be grateful for input on facing this choice. I ended up using the 18-55 kit lens the most while Joe was using the 28-70. No comparison. All of these are technically above our budget, but I am willing to make a way for this situation.

Also, where can I look for an affordable, but in-stock prime lens? I need it to be high aperture, auto-focus, and possibly in the 40-50mm range. This is for the primary purpose of shooting without a flash in a hospital labor and delivery room, professionally (birth photography). We have a 50 mm, 1.4 manual lens, but I am searching for autofocus (in low light situations).

Thank you in advance.

01-21-2007, 11:47 PM   #2
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If I had to pick from the 3 f2.8 zooms, I'd go for either the Tamron or the Sigma 28-70. The Sigma 24-70 is bigger and takes a bigger filter. So if you want to use a wedding/portrait filter, you may need to spend more $. I've got the Sigma EX 28-70/2.8, it's a nice lens.

If you want a fast 40-50mm prime, I'd reach for a FA43/f1.9 Limited or the FA50/f1.4. I really like using the FA43 and even the technicians at the photo shop have commented on images made with that lens, and they don't say anything about pics made with my F50/1.4. However the FA50/1.4 is cheaper (with rebate) and is reported to have less barrel distortion. So it's a matter of personal preference in the end... why don't you try out both lenses... you may end up buying one of each!

I do not own the DA40 Limited lens, so I can't comment on it. But that's another option.
01-22-2007, 12:01 AM   #3
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I looked for the Tokina you are referring to. I'm assuming it's the ATX 287 Pro SV? 28-70 mm f2.8, angle of view is approx 75-34 degrees through the range.

Then I took look around my local shop's website for references:
Henry's Camera Canada Photo - Video - Digital Camera's

The two Sigmas you mention are not in stock at my local shop. Special order item, but this particular Sigma 18-50 mm f2.8 DC EX popped up in stock so I checked its specifications in further detail.

It does not have as much length but I don't understand why it is tighter (about 69-38 degrees - helpful for you). It's in stock at my local shop at about $430 USD but I know they should be cheaper around you (especially when the 24-70 is selling at $512 USD at my shop - ouch).

I don't know much about this lens, but the 18 mm should be more helpful in those tight room situations you speak of and you don't want to use flash. With my kit lens, I often find myself shooting around 18-24 mm in a tight room situation.

So I find this 18-50 mm would be a little more versatile for your needs. I'd give it a try or see if Joe is willing to switch to this lens in exchange for the Tokina, since he prefers the wide shot anyway.

A couple online reviews I found:
Sigma 18-50 mm f/2.8 DC EX Lens Review
Sigma 18-50/2.8 Lens Review

As for the prime in the 40-50 mm range. It's going to be tough finding the autofocus 50 mm f1.4 Pentax lenses in stock. I'd keep hammering the websites and snap at the first opportunity. Alternatives - have you tried checking the Pentax 43mm f1.9 limited or DA 40?

Hope this all helps!
01-22-2007, 04:54 PM   #4
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Will the 4mm wider (28 vs 24) or the 5mm tighter (70 vs 75) make a difference? I'm leaning towards wanting the 75 mm.

Will that 5mm additional focal length worth the $40-50 difference in price?


01-23-2007, 01:34 AM   #5
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4 mm on the wide are very noticeable, while on the tele side, from 70 to 75, just barely. You need to jump to 90 to really see a difference. Else you can just crop the picture as you print.

For the fast lens, the 40 is f2,8, so it would give you no advantage over the zoom. Look for the 50 f/1,4.

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