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04-30-2014, 12:26 PM   #1
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Pentax 50-200 bargain

I've just started doing some studio photography and currently use the 18-55 WR kit lens plus my old SMC 50mm F1.7 manual lens from my ME Super days. I had planned to add a 50-135mm F2.8 and Tamron 17-50mm F2.8 to the kit bag in that order but I opened up camerpricebuster this morning to see that Currys are selling the 50-200mm Pentax WR lens for 89.95 which is less than half their normal price.

I decided to go for it on the basis that it will be quite a flexible home studio lens and used at F8 might be acceptably sharp. Also I've spent rather a lot on equipment of late - iLUX studio light set, Black Rapid sport strap, SD card holders, Flash/light meter, backdrops, backdrop stands etc.

I know the 50-200 is probably going to fall some way short of the 50-135 in image quality and read quite a damning review Photozone did but also found more positive reviews on Pentax 50-200/4-5.6 Lens Review - and other places.

I bought over the internet so I can send it back if I don't like it rather than buying in store.

Really quite excited - haven't bought a lens in a long while - so any other people on here got experience of the 50-200? One thing I am curious about is just how visible the difference between a 50-135mm v a 50-200mm will be if I am enlarging say to a 30 inch print by someone like Loxley off a K5 raw file?? I'm not into pixel peeping particularly but I don't want anything that's obviously soft even at F8.

Within the next year I do plan to add a 50-135mm and SRS will be where I buy it along with the tamron 17-50, just needed to let the credit card cool off a bit this month!!


04-30-2014, 12:54 PM   #2
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Congrats on the upgrades to your kit. The 50-200 has its adherents and I've seen many fine shots from it. I had a copy (version I) that was not sharp, even at f/8, but I now think that must have been a poor copy. Give it a good test and if you aren't happy with it you might have better luck returning it for a different copy.
04-30-2014, 01:27 PM   #3
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I owned the first version of the 50-200 and felt that it was a very nice lens but it got replaced with the Tamron 70-200 f4 and later the DA*50-135 f2.8. My main problem with it was that I wanted a constant aperture zoom which the DA 50-200 isn't. Image quality was always quite nice with the 50-200. I believe you will be pleasantly surprised by it.
04-30-2014, 01:50 PM   #4
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Thanks guys,

Really looking forward to this - the last lens I bought was the Pentax 12-24mm around this time last year but ignoring kit lenses that came with cameras before that the last lens I bought was the Tokina ATX 80-400 in 1998!! I can't believe I've only bought two lenses in 16 years!!

Rest of the kit comprises (in chronological order)
Pentax 50mm F1.7 SMC-M series (came with ME Super) 1981
Tamron Adaptall 2 80-210 F3.8-4 around 1984
Tokina ATX 80-400mm 1998
Pentax DA 18-55 WR (came with K5) 2013
Pemtax 12-24mm F4 2013
Pentax 50-200 F4-5.6 2014

Planning to buy the Tamron 17-50mm F2.8 and Pentax 50-135mm F2.8 in the next 12 months depending on how finances go.

I see that compared to many of you I'm incredibly slow to upgrade and somewhat behind the curve really - finances are always a limiting factor for aspirations...

Thanks for the positive vibes! Lets hope the 50-200 proves a fine example of the breed!


04-30-2014, 04:38 PM   #5

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Although true, I think it's disappointing that we have to hope for "a fine example of the breed." We generally don't tolerate that in other products we buy. Not just Pentax, but other manufacturers that I'm familiar with (Sigma, Tamron) too. Normally when you buy a product you expect to get the advantages of disadvantages of the design, but with a lens, you really have no idea what you'll end up with.
04-30-2014, 04:55 PM   #6
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I had a regular version some time ago. It was nothing special IQ-wise, though nice and compact, and cheap. That got sold off quickly when replaced by the much better 55-300 (subsequently sold as well).

I've subsequently gotten the WR version as an open-box deal for under $100, and it seems much better. One or two samples (or reviews) is almost worthless to determine the general quality. However, this lens has a spot in my collection, and I am planning to use it in futility at an airshow this weekend as the 150-600 is still on back order :-)

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