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View Poll Results: Which zoom for the holster bag?
Pentax DA 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 ED AL IF 2640.00%
Tamron 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 AF Di II LD IF 1929.23%
Tamron 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 AF XR Di II 34.62%
Tamron 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 XR Di LD 23.08%
None of the above. 1320.00%
None of the above, buy mine from the marketplace! 23.08%
Voters: 65. You may not vote on this poll

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06-11-2008, 11:47 PM   #1
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Which Utili-Zoom?

LBA is starting to itch again and while I intend to slowly build up a couple specialty lens kits over time what I am finding would be most handy right now is a utility/workhorse zoom that I can put in the holster bag - maybe with the 1.5TC - and be set for short outings with the wife and 2mo son. With all the kid gear that we have to haul plus juggling him at the same time I really don't want the added challenge of switching lenses out when I'm switching modes.

Based on focal range and budget I've narrowed things down to these four:
+ Pentax DA 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 ED AL IF
+ Tamron 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 AF Di II LD IF
+ Tamron 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 AF XR Di II
+ Tamron 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 XR Di LD

The two 18-250's are my likely suspects, I think. The other two having some tradeoff in cost and range. None of them are 'fast' but I'll mostly be using the lucky winner for outdoor/daylight shooting. I do about 50/50 MF vs AF so I will easily trade off a little AF speed for a smooth focus ring. As for other characteristics like sharpness, contrast and creamy bokeh ... yes please.

The local camera shops are no help; about all they carry for Pentax are the 18-55 and 50-200 (if even that). So without being able to demo these in person y'all are getting the tap for advice.

06-12-2008, 01:05 AM   #2
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Tamron/Pentax 18-250 is an excellent outdoor walkaround lens.
06-12-2008, 10:58 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Tamron/Pentax 18-250 is an excellent outdoor walkaround lens.
The Pentax version is a re-branding of the Tamron, correct? So literally the same lens with a slightly altered barrel "design" and different stickers? Amazon has the Pentax for about $50 less than the Tamron which threw me off a little.
06-12-2008, 11:07 AM   #4
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The Penron (or Tamrax, whichever you go for) 18-250 has been getting quite good reviews.

But if I had to pick for my own "trip", I'd surely go for the 28-300. I never use wideangle. My favourite focal lengths are 100 mm and up.

06-12-2008, 11:11 AM   #5
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I'm not a big fan of superzooms, but since your mind is set up on one, I would advice you the Tamron/Pentax 18-250. Whichever of the two is cheapest...
06-12-2008, 11:27 AM   #6
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Funny you should ask! I ordered the Pentax on the 10th and it's supposed to be delivered tomorrow (the 13th). So I guess you know which one I voted for. BTW: best price I found (from s reputable dealer) was $419 delivered.
06-12-2008, 12:11 PM   #7
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The 18-250 seems to be the undisputed "king of superzooms", buy which ever one is the best deal (warranty & price)

06-12-2008, 02:22 PM   #8
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I took none of the above.

The reason, I already have the entire range covered with 4 zooms

Sigma 10-20
Pentax 18-35 FA-J
Tamron 28-75 F2.8
Sigma 70-200 F2.8

It is not a big deal to carry these, plus my *istD and K10D.

If I want to cut down, I drop the 18-35, and the 70-200, and pack my 135 F2.5 for a mid telephoto.

Generally, I have found that there is not normally much need to go from wide to tele that often.

In fact, When touring in cities, my 10-20 spendds a lot of time on the camera. I also find that the 18mm wide end is just not wide enough. This has been my criticizm since the onset of zuper tele zooms.

When I shot film, i had a 24mm, and it was never wide enough. 18 on a DSLR is 27 on film (equivelent FOV), again just not wide enough for my tastes.

06-12-2008, 03:46 PM   #9
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Pick what you'd like more. Longer Tele, or wider Wide.
The 18-250 is slightly better optically, so i wouldn't bother looking at the 18-200

not that it's a bad lens, i might add. i've got one and love it. but i got mine when the 18-250s weren't out, and i needed wider wide
06-12-2008, 04:16 PM   #10
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I am waiting for the self-propelled 1-1000mm with auto-composition.

06-12-2008, 04:18 PM   #11
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I totally get where you're coming from Lowell, and in general agree with you.
Unfortunately or fortunately depending on how you look at things, for the next year or two when I go out to the zoo, or park, or whatever I have a little tiny boy with me who doesn't walk, poops in his pants and brings a metric ton of accessories along with him.
I have a very nice backpack and I could carry 3 or 4 lenses, 2 bodies, filters, flash and a 15" widescreen laptop plus a tripod and monopod strapped on to boot. I could, I just don' wanna.
For these very informal outings I just want one (1) lens and my K10D so I don't have the bulk and I don't have to think past that single setup. Basically, I'm looking for the simplicity of a P&S here but I just can't stand using a P&S - they don't fit my hands.
So a super/wide zoom, while it probably isn't sharp enough for the pages of NatGeo or terribly fast, I think should work well. I'm compromising a tad bit of IQ for a tidbit of sanity is all.
06-12-2008, 04:29 PM   #12
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Really appreciate the input so far from everybody.

Dan - The extra 50mm on the 28-300 tempts me I'm just concerned I may miss the extra 10mm on the wide end.

Tom - that's pretty close to what I'm seeing as well on price for the Pentax.

Nakey - thanks for the heads up on the optics. I wondered if there was more to the price diff there than just 50mm of reach.

Chris - You mean the constant f/1.2 one that Holga is working up, right?
06-12-2008, 05:40 PM   #13
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Tamron 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 AF XR Di II

I am not a huge fan of my Tamron 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 AF XR Di II

I am a beginner, but comparing it to my kit lenses, I've ben struggling with everything from color, to sharpness. It was a life saver on trip.

I am selling mine on eBay and thinking of buying the Pentax 18-250

Can any of you guys/gals compare the:

Tamron 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 AF XR Di II


Pentax DA 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 ED AL IF

I wouldn't mind having one of these "travel lenses" but if the Pentax is only marginally better than the T 18-200, then I'll just do without.

06-13-2008, 01:33 AM   #14
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I voted "None of the above" although I could buy Pentax.
Unfortunately none meet my requirements for a good, glare resistant, no CA lens for harsh lighting conditions.
So I wait changing lens ... and sometimes don't taking the pictures I would like
06-13-2008, 02:51 AM   #15
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Hi Venturi

Click on the link below, which will take you to a number of subsequent links in that post, enabling you to view some photos that I've taken with my Tamron 18-250mm. I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions......

Best regards

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