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05-12-2008, 04:30 PM   #1
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medium telephoto (say, 28-90)?

Tried a quick search but found so many replies that I could not sort 'em out, so I apologize if this has been asked and answered. If you've got a link to another thread, I'll be grateful to take that as a reply.

I'm looking for a better lens for shooting informal outdoor portraits. Right now I'm using the Sigma 17-70 macro, which is pretty nice, pretty close to what I want. Would like something a tad longer, though, would not mind having fixed aperture (f/4 would do), and of course I'd want it to have high image quality. I have the Pentax 16-45 f/4 and like it but it's not long enough. I want a zoom, so I'm not considering, say, the Pentax 70mm. What I want is something like the Pentax 16-45 f/4, but with a range more like 28-90. Auto-focus is a must, too, I'm afraid.

I used to own the Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 and it was a nice lens, but at the tele end 75mm is not a significant improvement over the Sigma 17-70 that I have now, and of course I lose the wide-angle capability of the Sigma. I don't need to go to 17 with this new lens, if I can get something in exchange at the other end. I think 28-90 would be just about perfect.

Does it exist? I've searched and can't find it. Maybe it's out there and I'm just missing it. It seems like a lens that LOTS of other folks would want, too.

Thanks,

Will


Last edited by WMBP; 05-12-2008 at 05:11 PM.
05-12-2008, 07:01 PM   #2
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Will

That is a tough order to fill. On the Pentax end there is the FA 24-90. This would probable fit the bill for you but it is not in production. You would have to find a good used copy.

Tamron also makes new a zoom in the range of 24-135. Tokina may have sold one also.
05-12-2008, 07:04 PM   #3
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do you really want that much overlap

what about 50-135/150 either pentax or sigma?

it would be much more useful as a compliment to your existing lens,.
05-12-2008, 07:44 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by WMBP Quote
Does it exist? I've searched and can't find it. Maybe it's out there and I'm just missing it. It seems like a lens that LOTS of other folks would want, too.
Pentax FA 28-105 f/4.0-5.6 Power Zoom. Older lens. Heavy and ugly, and a tad slow, but it takes really nice pictures. Good 1:3 macro/close focus. Inexpensive. Comes up on eBay all the time.

For reviews see: 28-105 f/4.0-5.6 FA (p)

Here's an old auction just so you get a good look at this lens. SMC PENTAX-FA 28-105mm f4~5.6 ZOOM LENS!! WARRANTY!! - eBay (item 230249623722 end time May-11-08 11:03:00 PDT)

I like it. Here are a couple of close focus shots I took with it recently. I know you probably are not looking for these kinds of pics, but I assure you the non-close focus shots are quite crisp too...






woof!

05-12-2008, 07:49 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by WMBP Quote
Tried a quick search but found so many replies that I could not sort 'em out, so I apologize if this has been asked and answered. If you've got a link to another thread, I'll be grateful to take that as a reply.

I'm looking for a better lens for shooting informal outdoor portraits. Right now I'm using the Sigma 17-70 macro, which is pretty nice, pretty close to what I want. Would like something a tad longer, though, would not mind having fixed aperture (f/4 would do), and of course I'd want it to have high image quality. I have the Pentax 16-45 f/4 and like it but it's not long enough. I want a zoom, so I'm not considering, say, the Pentax 70mm. What I want is something like the Pentax 16-45 f/4, but with a range more like 28-90. Auto-focus is a must, too, I'm afraid.

I used to own the Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 and it was a nice lens, but at the tele end 75mm is not a significant improvement over the Sigma 17-70 that I have now, and of course I lose the wide-angle capability of the Sigma. I don't need to go to 17 with this new lens, if I can get something in exchange at the other end. I think 28-90 would be just about perfect.

Does it exist? I've searched and can't find it. Maybe it's out there and I'm just missing it. It seems like a lens that LOTS of other folks would want, too.

Thanks,

Will
The Pentax 28-80/90 was not a particularly good lens, nor a particularly bad lens, for that matter. I have one, and the power zoom switch is stuck on with packing tape. This appears to be a common flaw. I have never used power zoom, so it doesn't bother me.

The FA 24-90 is a very good lens. I've had mine for nearly eight years now, having bought it with the MZ-S, and it has taken a many great pictures for me. As a walk-around, it is a bit long on the digitals. For indoor work, it might be a bit slow unless you bump up the ISO.
05-12-2008, 07:50 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
do you really want that much overlap

what about 50-135/150 either pentax or sigma?

it would be much more useful as a compliment to your existing lens,.
Lowell,

I already have the Pentax DA* 50-135. Nice lens. But I am not looking for a complement to an existing lens. When I shoot weddings, I put the Pentax 16-45 f/4 or Sigma 18-55 f/2.8 on one camera and the Pentax DA* 50-135 f/2.8 on the other camera, and that pairing works very well in the church. But I'm looking now for a single lens for a single purpose that I'd use on a single camera. Looking at the shots I've taken during the last several dozen portraits over the last couple of weeks, I almost never go to 17mm - but I find myself at 70mm a good bit and wishing I could step back a couple feet more.

It's possible I ought to try using the 50mm f/1.4 and just zoom with my feet, as they say. But that's hard. If I'm 10 ft away and I see something that makes me want to come in tight, I want to do it quickly - and besides, being a little farther away makes subjects less self-conscious. Getting closer seems to work for children, as they pay more attention to what's right in their face. But it has the opposite effect on some adults, who would prefer that I get out of their face so they can relax.

Will
05-12-2008, 07:52 PM   #7
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Nice pictures, woof!

What's "power zoom"?

Will
05-12-2008, 08:30 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by WMBP Quote
Nice pictures, woof!

What's "power zoom"?

Will
Some Pentax lens and camera combinations have a power zoom capability. By sliding the zoom ring forward and back, you can switch between manual and power zoom. I have a power zoom 28-80. Have a look for Pentax power zoom in Google - you'll find out more than you can ever use. A brief set of highlights:
  • Three speed zooming
  • Set two zoom points and switch between them with a button press
  • Take neat pictures where the lens zooms all by itself from one end to the other during the last half of the exposure.
It didn't go over all that well. When I bought my lens, it was to go on an ME body for a European cycling trip in 1991. It fit nicely in a back pack. Obviously it would not power zoom on the ME. It wouldn't auto focus, and it wouldn't shoot in anything but aperture priority either. It still worked fine, and my wife took some really great images.

05-13-2008, 05:55 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Canada_Rockies Quote
Three speed zooming
Set two zoom points and switch between them with a button press
Take neat pictures where the lens zooms all by itself from one end to the other during the last half of the exposure.
CR's summary above is a good one... I tend to only use the power zoom as a zoom... none of the other funky little features seem to work on my K10D, nor would I use them if they did. Actually, even there most of the time I use the zoom in manual mode. Power Zoom just drains the battery that much faster.

There is a lot of functionality there that is not of much use and this undoubted adds to weight. However, there were at least three (3) iterations of 28-105mm though, and I can ONLY vouch for the power zoom version. It's a pretty decent lens in the range you are looking for with a price that can't be beat... mine was very clean and I got it for $100.00.

Kind regards,

woof!
05-13-2008, 09:57 AM   #10
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Canon 24-105mm f/4 IS on a 40D


QuoteOriginally posted by WMBP Quote
Tried a quick search but found so many replies that I could not sort 'em out, so I apologize if this has been asked and answered. If you've got a link to another thread, I'll be grateful to take that as a reply.

I'm looking for a better lens for shooting informal outdoor portraits. Right now I'm using the Sigma 17-70 macro, which is pretty nice, pretty close to what I want. Would like something a tad longer, though, would not mind having fixed aperture (f/4 would do), and of course I'd want it to have high image quality. I have the Pentax 16-45 f/4 and like it but it's not long enough. I want a zoom, so I'm not considering, say, the Pentax 70mm. What I want is something like the Pentax 16-45 f/4, but with a range more like 28-90. Auto-focus is a must, too, I'm afraid.

I used to own the Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 and it was a nice lens, but at the tele end 75mm is not a significant improvement over the Sigma 17-70 that I have now, and of course I lose the wide-angle capability of the Sigma. I don't need to go to 17 with this new lens, if I can get something in exchange at the other end. I think 28-90 would be just about perfect.

Does it exist? I've searched and can't find it. Maybe it's out there and I'm just missing it. It seems like a lens that LOTS of other folks would want, too.

Thanks,

Will
05-13-2008, 10:15 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by egordon99 Quote
Canon 24-105mm f/4 IS on a 40D
Yeah, I know. I'm afraid this shows, once again, one of the disadvantages of the Pentax platform - a smaller selection of lenses. What we've got tends to be very good, I know, but it would be nice to have more options.

Right now I think I'm going to stick with my Sigma 17-70. Thanks to everybody for your responses. I'm not going to purchase any of the suggested lenses at this time but I'm glad to learn about them.

Thanks,

Will
05-13-2008, 10:19 AM   #12
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I'll go along with the individuals supporting the FA 24-90. I had this lens and regrettably let it go when I upgraded to the DA* 16-50. While the DA* was a nice replacement, I would have to say you were not losing much at all in the FA 24-90. The lens has very good to excellent sharpness and the contrast and color balance were second to none. The FA did feel a little "loose" and "plasticky" but it never failed to produce a quality image.

One in very good condition should be able to be obtained for roughly $300.00.

Stephen
05-13-2008, 10:31 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by SCGushue Quote
I'll go along with the individuals supporting the FA 24-90. ...
Yeah, this sounds just about right. But keh.com doesn't appear to have one right now. I'll keep looking. Thanks,

Will
05-13-2008, 10:55 AM   #14
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I can't really recommend the FA 28-90. It's got excellent colour, lovely contrast, and good sharpness in the middle. But the corners are very soft, the build quality is poor, and the front element rotates, so filter use is a major pain.

I can recommend the Sigma 24-135 2.8-4.5. I got it to replace the 28-90 and use it in much the same manner you desire. A people/portrait lens that reaches a little bit longer than normal. By avoiding the ridiculous multiplication factor of a super zoom (18-250 or 28-300) the Sigma is sharp throughout the range.

You can read my review of the lens here: PentaxForums.com Third-Party Pentax Lens Review Database - 24-135mm F2.8-4.5 Aspherical IF
05-13-2008, 11:25 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by filmamigo Quote
I can recommend the Sigma 24-135 2.8-4.5. I got it to replace the 28-90 and use it in much the same manner you desire. A people/portrait lens that reaches a little bit longer than normal. By avoiding the ridiculous multiplication factor of a super zoom (18-250 or 28-300) the Sigma is sharp throughout the range.
Hey, amigo, this sounds pretty interesting. Thanks for the suggestion and for the link to the review page here.

Unfortunately, it's out of stock at sigma4less.com, and neither Amazon nor B&H seem to carry it. But I'm going to keep my eye out for it. I'd prefer to have a constant f/4 rather than f/2.8 wide and f/4.5 tele, but that's okay, I'll take what I can get!

Thanks,

Will
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