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02-09-2015, 03:34 PM   #1
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Help ! SMC DA 16-45 f/4 or ...

Hello,

I'm on a budget but I would like to improve my gear beyond kit lens.
I already read a lot of posts and reviews and I'm considering a DA 16-45 to join to my actual DA 55-300. Later i can buy a DA 50mm f/1.8 and I'm done ...

Other options are:

- DA 17-70 is expensive and it seems to have HSM probs.
- DA 16-50 seems good by also expensive.
- DA 16-85 is out of budget.
- Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 have very good reviews is fast but I like Pentax colors.
- Sigma 18-250 to stop this crazy indecision, sell kit lens and DA 55-300.

I like macro ( Yeah I know Tamron 90 mm ...) Some samples here: Fotos recentes de Artur P Oliveira Supercilios - Olhares.com

Usually join photo groups going around the city or country side shooting.
Also I like motosports specially car racing this why i get the DA 55-300.

I would like to have your advices or opinions.

Many thanks in advance.

Happy Shooting.


Last edited by art_oliver; 02-10-2015 at 01:20 AM.
02-09-2015, 03:39 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by art_oliver Quote
Hello,

I'm on a budget but I would like to improve my gear beyond kit lens.
I already read a lot of posts and reviews and I'm considering a DA 16-45 to join to my actual DA 55-300. Later i can buy a DA 50mm f/1.8 and I'm done ...

Other options are:

- DA 17-70 is expensive and it seems to have HSM probs.
- DA 17-50 seems good by also expensive.
- DA 16-85 is out of budget.
- Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 have very good reviews is fast but I like Pentax colors.
- Sigma 18-250 to stop this crazy indecision, sell kit lens and DA 55-300.

I like macro ( Yeah I know Tamron 90 mm ...) Some samples here: Fotos recentes de Artur P Oliveira Supercilios - Olhares.com

Usually join photo groups going around the city or country side shooting.
Also I like motosports specially car racing this why i get the DA 55-300.

I would like to have your advices or opinions.

Many thanks in advance.

Happy Shooting.
Have you considered the Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4 "C"? It's very good for close-ups.

Adam
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02-09-2015, 04:06 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by art_oliver Quote
I'm on a budget but I would like to improve my gear beyond kit lens.
I already read a lot of posts and reviews and I'm considering a DA 16-45
I've had the same conundrum myself. Much depends on how much you can get that DA 16-45 for. If it's a real bargain, then it might
be worth getting.

I tried one out once, but found it had serious CA. I thought there may have been something wrong with that copy, as it didn't seem to outperform
the kit lens I had at the time by much of a margin, so I returned it. In retrospect, I'm discovering that I had a very good copy of the kit lens,
so perhaps there was nothing wrong with it.

I currently have the Tamron 17-50. I'm satisfied with the performance, but I do wish it had more of a Pentax build quality, as well as QS + WR, but
for the price, it's hard to complain.

Once the price of the 16-85 comes down, I may wish I had that instead ( though it is slower ).

The Tamron is not a bad choice if budget is a concern. Or you could keep an eye out for a used DA*16-50 with broken SDM, buy it cheap, and perform the screwdrive
conversion on it.

If you are thinking of shooting closeups with this lens, then perhaps the Sigma that Adam mentioned is a better choice.
02-09-2015, 04:49 PM   #4
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The kit 18-55 is pretty good. What would be "better" in your use - wider? More resolution? Silent focus? WR? Size? IQ? Sure you can get better but we need to know which of these factors is where you want improvements.

---------- Post added 02-09-15 at 06:56 PM ----------

Also budget...

02-09-2015, 05:11 PM - 2 Likes   #5
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I went for the 16-45 because I wanted something better than the kit lens and also wider. I was very happy with it and I think it's able to take great pictures. Only problem is that I found myself using it at 16mm most of the time... so now the poor thing is standing in the closet doing nothing because... DA 15mm Limited happened. I would use it as a walk-around lens if not for the aperture, I feel that sometimes I need something faster than f4 and I have the Sigma 35mm f1.4. I know I should sell it but I just can't - I got emotionally attached :P One of those days I have to give it some time on my camera it feels like.

I don't really know what to advise, maybe you can think more about what exactly you want to do with it as others said. In my case I knew I was going for wide angle and I didn't have the money for a superior wide angle prime at that time.

Some samples with the DA 16-45:





02-09-2015, 05:38 PM   #6
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I had a 16-45 which got a reasonable amount of use. Had to trade it to make the lay buy payment on my 300mm F4. Considering how little money it brought, I am now wishing I had kept it.

It is sort of macro and I got some nice flower shots with it. Some OK landscapes too.

It is nothing special but, for the price, it is a pretty good buy.
02-09-2015, 06:05 PM   #7
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Where did you see the DA 17-50?Or did you mean DA*16-50?
02-09-2015, 06:24 PM   #8
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DA 15 plus an 18-xxx lens is a nice combo - it's what I use.
In my case the 18-135, but the 18-55 would work also.

02-09-2015, 06:32 PM   #9
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I have had this lens for many years and it is by far my most used lens, probably because it suits my shooting style, but also because it is significantly better than any of the three 18-55's we have in the household, sharper and with better contrast. There is some chromatic aberration (CA), but Lightroom takes care of that quite easily. The extra 2mm wider than the kit is significant - don't let anyone tell you otherwise. The best about it, though, is the value for money, the fixed f4 is a bonus for me, not a drawback. There are better lenses out there, obviously, but I'd have a hard time letting this one go. Hattifnatt's pics are a great example of what the lens can do. I'd certainly not replace a DA 55-300 and a DA 16-45 with a Pentax or Sigma 18-250, that's for sure...
02-09-2015, 10:26 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by art_oliver Quote
- Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 have very good reviews is fast but I like Pentax colors.
- Sigma 18-250 to stop this crazy indecision, sell kit lens and DA 55-300.
See, you're like me (you like Pentax colors), so you're stuck with Pentax glass (plus a few odd lenses from other brands).

I liked my DA17-70. I didn't have any problems with the focusing motor, though I'm sure it can happen. I'd go for that or the DA16-45. See how Hattifnatt's examples pick up beautiful light?

The constant f/4 aperture is nice to have. The DA17-70 did very well at f/4.5 - I believe the DA16-45 does as well. Much better to be able to set the aperture and then zoom without fear of it automatically changing. You see, wide-open is seldom optimal for a lens, so while an f/3.5-f/5.6 lens might give good IQ at a wide angle at f/4.5, when you zoom in to the long end and the camera automatically adjusts the aperture to f/5.6 you suddenly get significantly compromised IQ. This really stinks, because the lens probably does well at f/7.1 at the long end, but the camera won't make this adjustment for you. Yet you don't want to shoot at f/7.1 at the wide end. See the problem? A lens that gives good IQ from 17-70mm (or 16-45mm) at f/4.5 is a good thing to have.

Even if you liked the colors from the Tamron, I believe it's better stopped down to about f/4 anyway. Certainly many Sigmas need to be stopped down a full stop or more. You probably don't want that. This makes many "slower" Pentax lenses just as good as many "faster" third-party ones.



As far as macro goes, you can actually afford one soon. Just get a Cosina 100/3.5 (sold under many brands, with both AF and Manual Focus versions available). IMO nothing between it and an F/FA or D FA 100 WR macro is worth the increase in price. The Vivitar Series 1 105/2.5 MF (also under other brands as well) is an exception with its beautiful images, but it was too heavy for me to leave it in my bag all the time. Thus it got left home most of the time, rendering it almost useless in practice. Perhaps I slightly preferred its images even over my D FA 100 WR, but the 100 WR is better in every other way, and it goes with me whenever I might need it!

I sold every macro I had except the 100 WR and the Cosina, because they both create nice images and are good values - both worth what they cost. Get the Cosina. Oh yes, it's also small and light enough to have with you!

Last edited by DSims; 02-09-2015 at 10:37 PM.
02-09-2015, 11:08 PM   #11
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I just bought the 16-85 and took it over the 16-45 because of the longer reach (single travel lens option for my daughter ) and WR .

The 16-45 has a good reputation, and the extra mm or two at the wide end counts for a lot. If paired with the 55-300 it seems reasonable, you won't mis the 10mm gap at45-55mm
02-10-2015, 01:33 AM   #12
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Thanks a lot everybody for your fast (you own all primes :-D) and valueable input!

@Adam - Nice suggestion but this extended the options ;-) ... added anyway.

@UncleVanya - At this time better will be => IQ (Sharpness), Wider and Range (I'm afraid about 45mm being to short ...)
Of course I can keep the money and still with my 18-55mm ... I find myself sometimes shock with my back against the wall because is not wide enought ...

@Hattifnatt - Beautiful pictures ! Thanks for share. I'm almost convinced ... but not yet.

@bschriver11 - You right, my mistake I mean DA 16-50. Corrected.

@demondata - Like your directness.

@DSims - Colors one of the reason why I choose Pentax. I find Tamron sometimes a bit "Brownish" and Sigma to "Cold".
It could be "just my imagination".

When I have a decision I'll share.

Thanks once again.

Last edited by art_oliver; 02-10-2015 at 01:38 AM.
02-10-2015, 04:05 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by art_oliver Quote
@DSims - Colors one of the reason why I choose Pentax. I find Tamron sometimes a bit "Brownish" and Sigma to "Cold".
It could be "just my imagination".
No, it's not your imagination. You'll keep noticing it when you own the lenses.
02-10-2015, 04:50 AM   #14
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You could consider also the Sigma 17-50 f2.8. Just bought it and is very sharp even wide open, although it shows some vignetting. I couldn't tell the difference in colors compared to my 18-55WR. Autofocus is fast and silent, but you have to get used to turn the focus ring in the opposite direction as you were familiar with Pentax lenses and to attach the lens without having an index mark on the mount.
02-10-2015, 10:00 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by art_oliver Quote
Colors one of the reason why I choose Pentax. I find Tamron sometimes a bit "Brownish" and Sigma to "Cold". It could be "just my imagination".
Not your imagination, your eyes are just extra sensitive to color. I find the biggest issue with both Tamron and Sigma lenses is their rendering of green tones. Green can be difficult because the human eye tends to be more sensitive to differences in green tones than any other color, so even if a lens is a little bit off, it can have an affect on the image. To my eye, Sigma lenses tend to render green tones with a slight yellow tinge. When attempts are made to correct this, the images wind up looking cold. Tamron lenses tend to render green a bit darker, more toward the aqua end of the spectrum.

I've owned both the DA 16-45 and the DA 17-70. The DA 16-45 is a good lens, a very nice step up from the 18-55 kit lens. Some have complained about barrel wobble when the DA 16-45 is extended (unlike most zoom lenses, it extends for the wide end of the zoom). The wobble sometimes can lead to decentering (or so it is claimed: I never had an issue with it). Used prices of this lens are often around $200 (which is a very good price for a lens of this caliber).

The DA 17-70 is the better of the two lenses. The biggest difference is lens contrast. Images from the 17-70 just have more bite, pop -- call it what you will -- in the end, they tend to look better to human perception than images from the DA 16-45. Used prices for the DA 17-70 are around $300+.

Some have complained, not merely about the SDM of the 17-70, but AF accuracy. I've run into AF accuracy issues with the 17-70 as well -- mostly when focusing at things at a distance (longer than 10 feet). But honestly, I experienced very similar AF issues with the DA 16-45.
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