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03-01-2014, 10:45 AM   #1
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Advice on travel kit...

I will be traveling to the Philippines in a couple weeks time for 10 days. I am looking for some advice on what kit you would take from my existing lenses. I have a K30 to pair the lenses with. I want to travel fairly light...but want to cover my bases on what lenses I'll need for diffSMCerent situations while there.

The two different kits I'm considering are as follows (but I'm open to any suggestions):

Option A...
Pentax DA 10-17 fisheye (fun and versatile lens when traveling from past experience)
Tamron 28-75 f2.8 (for versatility)
SMC Takumar 50 1.4 (low light)
Either my M100 f2.8 or M135 f3.5 for a little more reach

Option B...
DA 21 Limited (wide angle)
DA 40 Limited
Tamron 90 f2.8 macro (for length and portrait work...plus may use macro)
And maybe throw in the SMC Takumar 50 1.4 for speed

I have a couple weeks to decide but have been gong back and forth between versatility of a couple zooms or the compact/sharper primes. Any thougths...suggestions would be welcome. Thanks!

03-01-2014, 10:50 AM   #2
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21 40 and the 1.4

The rest you can leave at home IMO.

It will also force you to take pictures with what you have and not let your mind wander into what you wish you had at any given moment.
03-01-2014, 11:19 AM - 1 Like   #3
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Put the 50mm on the camera, keep the DA-21 in your pocket, and wrap up the 135 so you can keep it in your luggage and feel good that you have it, "just in case".
03-01-2014, 11:25 AM   #4
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It's going to depend on what you're wanting to shoot also. Are you checking out buildings and landscapes? people/events? animals/nature? You can optimize the kit based on what your goals are.

If you want an all around good for anything kit based on what you listed, I'd say:
21 for wide/landscapes,
28-75 for walk around and versatility,
90 for reach/macro.

If you're traveling alone it'll be easier to throw in the fully manual lenses. if you are traveling w/ a partner of any kind, in my experience, they are not always patient enough to let you go full manual for every shot. If you're going to take guided tours, this also will limit your freedom to linger. That's why I suggest the autofocus/auto aperture lenses over the others.

Since you have a WR body, you may want to invest in a DA 18-55 WR. You currently don't have any WR listed. It can be had for under $150. It's an underrated performer and a good walk-around. You can stick it on there, go out in the rain/humidity, and abuse it because it's so cheap. It's my travel landscape/versatile lens and I take it when I don't want to screw up my primes. At that price, I could smash it on a rock hiking and not have it ruin my trip.

last suggestion: tripod.

and a tip: When I travel, I choose a lens based on what the day entails and what I think I'll want to shoot. Then I stick with it all day and make shots work within the limitations of that choice. If I'm in doubt, I'll choose a little longer in the range and stitch if a situation arises where I need a wider shot. I don't like switching lenses mid day in a new place. it takes time out of seeing the sights and is an unnecessary distraction.

03-01-2014, 11:42 AM   #5
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10-17, 21, 28-75. Wide enough, long enough, close focusing.

Last edited by SpecialK; 03-01-2014 at 02:17 PM.
03-01-2014, 12:18 PM - 1 Like   #6
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I might mix up things across your Option A and B. I'm assuming your trip will include a mix of rural and urban settings. Note that I like wide angle so I might do things differently than you. The 75mm is long enough for portraits so I would leave the 100, 135, and 90 at home. Use the extra bag space to take both of your wide angle lenses; they are very different lenses and aren't redundant.

10-17, DA21, 28-75 for walkaround, 50 1.4 for handheld low light.
03-01-2014, 01:24 PM - 2 Likes   #7
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21, 40, 70 with Pentax Limited Case 2
03-01-2014, 04:12 PM   #8
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I'd go with:
Pentax DA 10-17 fisheye
21
Tamron 28-75 f2.8
The 90, 100, or 135

03-03-2014, 03:34 PM   #9
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I would just take the 21 and the 40 or for a super light kit or else buy the 18-135.

Or maybe just take the DA40 and make the most of it.
03-03-2014, 05:46 PM   #10
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I recently did 12 weeks in Ireland & Sweden with the 18-135 and the 16-45, about %90 of my shooting was done with the 16-45
03-04-2014, 01:38 PM   #11
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Everybody's needs are different. If I don't have at least an 135 available, then I'm definitely feeling out of reach. To me half the fun is bringing distant subjects closer. Plus the Pentax 135s are so compact.

If you like the fisheye and you said it's fun, take the fisheye with you. Plus the 21 which won't add much weight to your bag, and the 40 and you're set.

So:
10-17 Fisheye
21 Limited
40 Limited
M 135 3.5

The key here is that if you ever feel like walking around with little or no weight, you can leave the fisheye behind and take 1 lens on your camera and 1 or 2 in your pockets easily.
Now if Macro is important, just substitute that M 135 3.5 for the Tammy 90 2.8. you might not miss having a longer lens, as I would.
There's so many combinations of lenses in that set up, only you know what's really important to you.
03-04-2014, 02:00 PM   #12
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I'd say either this, if photography is an important part of your holiday, and you don't want to buy anything new:

QuoteOriginally posted by DeadJohn Quote
10-17, DA21, 28-75 for walkaround, 50 1.4 for handheld low light.
Or this:

QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
Buy a 18-135 and be done with it.
For me it's easy. When on holiday my first priority is to enjoy myself, photography is not my main reason for going on holiday. So I'll always take my 18-135 - so versatile, and all-weather. (And I'll put the 15 Ltd in my pocket since it's so small.)
03-04-2014, 03:29 PM   #13
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I took the DA18-135 to Disneyland last weekend. I also had the DA15 Ltd. with me. I felt secure knowing the 18-135 was in my pocket, just in case. I never took it out even once. Your mileage may vary.
If you're going to take a zoom (as most folks would), the DA18-135 may as well be the one. It has wide range, an improvement in quality over the lesser pair of kit lenses, and WR. The constant zoom-creep (since new) isn't too bad because the lens isn't that long. I won't sell mine because the Limiteds aren't WR, but it also doesn't rain much here.

If I was manly enough to haul around a zoom for a few weeks, it would be the DA*50-135, but I can't even do a whole day at the zoo with it. The 18-135 is certainly lighter.
03-04-2014, 05:57 PM   #14
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Check the weather, Philippine may still in raining season. I was in Bali recently and 16-50 was all that's needed in any weather. Like others have said, if it isn't a photography focused trip, it's better to put versatility ahead of quality.
03-04-2014, 08:12 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by AquaDome Quote
Put the 50mm on the camera, keep the DA-21 in your pocket, and wrap up the 135 so you can keep it in your luggage and feel good that you have it, "just in case".
I fully agree with this plan. I was out of the country for a year and 1/2 with nothing but a M-50/f1.4 on a K-7 and a Ricoh GRDIII (28mm equivalent) in my pocket. There were VERY few occasions I ever slightly wished for more... Weight isthe thing as is simplicity. Take less and learn how to use it more.

---------- Post added 03-04-14 at 07:14 PM ----------

(keep in mind that occasions to really use the 135 will be few and far between for a number of reasons... weight, bulk, carry-around hassle, eye-magnet...etc.)
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