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05-13-2014, 02:03 PM   #1
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Buy it or rent it?

I wanted to rent a Pentax 55-300 for a week but it isn't available. I can rent a 18-250 instead which would be less but I don't know if I should bother since that only gives me 50mm more than what I already have. I was told the rental company would give me a deal on renting the 60-250 instead.

So I guess my question is should I rent the 18-250 even though it will only give me an extra 50mm or should I buy the 55-300 (or something else) and maybe decide I don't like it and return it?

This is for kids' little league baseball in broad daylight/evening so I don't really need a really wide aperture. This is the season when I use my long lens the most and if I were going to spend $400 on a lens I don't know that this would be the next priority on my list.

05-13-2014, 02:23 PM   #2
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rent the 60-250
05-13-2014, 02:25 PM   #3
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+1.
05-13-2014, 02:30 PM   #4
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Take the rental deal on the DA*60-250, unless you're planning to buy a lens. It'll give you the best results.

A used DA55-300 isn't all that much to buy, especially a DA L version. It's not the ultimate sports lens, but it works - especially when you're starting out.


From your comment, I presume you already have the DA50-200. It's OK, but it's one of Pentax' weakest lenses (perhaps the weakest currently in production).

On a "perfectionist's" scale of IQ (1-10), the DA50-200 is about a 2, the DA55-300 is a 5, the DA*60-250 is a 7 or 8, and the * primes are 9s or 10s.

05-15-2014, 12:12 PM   #5
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I'm a big fan of renting lenses for specific occasions for us amateurs. We want good results, but cannot justify the expense of a $1200 lens even if we can afford it.
05-15-2014, 01:21 PM   #6
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I rented the DA* 60-250 a few weeks ago. It is a beautiful lens that performs very well. I shot a lot of every day stuff with it, too. Kids sports, my dog, walk around the zoo and some more artsie stuffz as well. Physically, it is much longer of course than other lenses you list; if that is something you need to think about.
05-16-2014, 12:32 PM   #7
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Buy the 55-300 used. Take seriously the caution about the 60-250 weight, it's a beast in comparison. That lens is worth renting before buying since it's more expensive.
05-16-2014, 03:18 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
Buy the 55-300 used. Take seriously the caution about the 60-250 weight, it's a beast in comparison. That lens is worth renting before buying since it's more expensive.
You may be right, but it's funny how our brand typically has lenses that are lighter than the competition, yet many of us still complain about the weight!

05-16-2014, 05:02 PM   #9
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Well after some hot words with UPS it arrived today. And it is monstrous. Luckily these kids' baseball games don't last very long and I can definitely sit down anytime I need to so hopefully the weight won't be too much of a problem. I won't have to really be walking around with it much. Thanks for all the recommendations. I can't wait to try it out.
05-16-2014, 05:34 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by allexinwonderland Quote
Well after some hot words with UPS it arrived today. And it is monstrous. Luckily these kids' baseball games don't last very long and I can definitely sit down anytime I need to so hopefully the weight won't be too much of a problem. I won't have to really be walking around with it much. Thanks for all the recommendations. I can't wait to try it out.
I assume you mean you rented the DA*60-250?


You can get monopods awfully cheap. You don't even have to extend one out all the way, but it can support the weight either sitting or standing, or you can take it off whenever you want and set it aside without having to worry about the expense or size of a tripod. Also, they're allowed many places that restrict tripods, since they don't have extended legs for people to potentially trip over. Also, you often can use one without a ball head (or other type of tripod head) so it keeps it simple and keeps the cost low.
05-16-2014, 05:47 PM   #11
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An outdoors store like REI will likely have a monopod perhaps a walking stick with the option, or look online. It is a very good idea with this lens.
05-19-2014, 08:55 PM   #12
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Thanks for the tips. I'm on my third full day of the rental of the 60-250 and it's awesome. I finally took a look at some of the baseball shots I took today and over the weekend. Definitely a huge quality improvement and even just 50mm more is noticeable and pretty much adequate given how close I'm able to get to the field. Having a lot of fun with this one but it is exhausting since it is pretty heavy for me.
05-21-2014, 07:10 AM   #13
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I'd love to be able to test a 60-250 one day, but what I paid for my Tamron 70-300 LD DI (80 dollars) is probably less than what you're paying for the rental of the 60-250...

I find that while the Tamron looks huge extended out and with the hood on, it's still pretty light so I can spend a couple of hours taking baseball shots with it with no problems. Even my A 70-210, although quite heavier, still isn't a problem. Both of these lenses can give good results based on my realistic expectations that I'll get professional shots out of them. But I set them at F8 and ISO 400 and with good light I get good shutter speeds and very clean images. I do like the old A lens better but the AF on the Tamron is needed for some types of shots.

Maybe you could post some of the pictures you got with the 60-250, so that I can see how much I'm missing by using my consumer zooms? I'm especially interested because I've also been taking quite a few pictures of kids baseball.
05-22-2014, 10:32 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
I'd love to be able to test a 60-250 one day, but what I paid for my Tamron 70-300 LD DI (80 dollars) is probably less than what you're paying for the rental of the 60-250...

I find that while the Tamron looks huge extended out and with the hood on, it's still pretty light so I can spend a couple of hours taking baseball shots with it with no problems. Even my A 70-210, although quite heavier, still isn't a problem. Both of these lenses can give good results based on my realistic expectations that I'll get professional shots out of them. But I set them at F8 and ISO 400 and with good light I get good shutter speeds and very clean images. I do like the old A lens better but the AF on the Tamron is needed for some types of shots.

Maybe you could post some of the pictures you got with the 60-250, so that I can see how much I'm missing by using my consumer zooms? I'm especially interested because I've also been taking quite a few pictures of kids baseball.
Your lens is only slightly less expensive than the rental. So keep watching for a deal 30% off or more comes around once in a while. Not sure if I will be able to post any. I haven't tried it yet.
05-24-2014, 04:16 AM   #15
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I would suggest renting theDA* 60-250. I used it to shot at my grandson's late afternoon rugby match. You can see some of the shots here.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/122-lens-clubs/73997-da-club-4.html#post2800784
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