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09-04-2015, 09:01 AM   #1
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Wedding Zoom Lens!

Hey everyone,

I am in need of a telephoto zoom f2.8 for weddings, concerts, and portrait sessions. I am inbetween the Tamron and Pentax lenses.
  • First, the 50-135 DA lens would be awesome, EXCEPT... Lots of people say focusing is slow, dog slow. Also, they say the SDM may fail.
  • Second, (I am leaning towards this one) the Tamron 70-200 f2.8. This lens is bright, sharp, and resonable at focusing per the reviews I have read. Also, very affordable in the used market.
  • Third, the sigma 70-200 2.8. Not likely I can find this one and not pay a lot for it. Its discontinued and for this price I might as well get the future pentax 70-200
  • Forth and not really on the table, Pentax 70-200 f2.8. It will probably cost too much for me to jump on it when it gets here.

Can anybody speak to shooting live events with the Pentax 50-135? Is it quick enough to catch people?
How about the Tamron, can I shoot wedding, concerts, moving things with relative accuracy?

Thanks!

09-04-2015, 09:28 AM   #2
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I love love love love love my DA* 50-135. Sure the SDM might fail, so what? Buy it with a warranty or be ready to convert it to screw drive and enjoy one of pentax's best lenses for IQ. AF has been accurate and fast enough for weddings for me. It's the lens Pentax designed for shooting people, portraits, and weddings and it shows.

Last edited by skierd; 09-04-2015 at 09:42 AM.
09-04-2015, 09:53 AM   #3
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The Tamron is VERY noisy. The pictures are gorgeous. Doesn't seem a great choice for a wedding. Believe me, it is twice as loud as any other lens. Focus sounds like ten lenses focusing all at once. Even the aperture makes a big ker-chunk noise. I do love mine, but I don't need quiet.
09-04-2015, 10:22 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blacknight659 Quote
Hey everyone,

I am in need of a telephoto zoom f2.8 for weddings, concerts, and portrait sessions. I am inbetween the Tamron and Pentax lenses.
  • First, the 50-135 DA lens would be awesome, EXCEPT... Lots of people say focusing is slow, dog slow. Also, they say the SDM may fail.
  • Second, (I am leaning towards this one) the Tamron 70-200 f2.8. This lens is bright, sharp, and resonable at focusing per the reviews I have read. Also, very affordable in the used market.
  • Third, the sigma 70-200 2.8. Not likely I can find this one and not pay a lot for it. Its discontinued and for this price I might as well get the future pentax 70-200
  • Forth and not really on the table, Pentax 70-200 f2.8. It will probably cost too much for me to jump on it when it gets here.

Can anybody speak to shooting live events with the Pentax 50-135? Is it quick enough to catch people?
How about the Tamron, can I shoot wedding, concerts, moving things with relative accuracy?

Thanks!
The 50-135mm is quick enough for weddings, and quiet too. I love my 50-135 for close portraiture. A 70-200mm lens is, imho, too long and heavy to use indoors, or where you are able to get physically closer (e.g. at a garden reception). The 50-135 is also fairly compact without the hood, and can appear less intimidating. The DA* 55mm is also good to have, when you find the light has suddenly gone away.

09-04-2015, 10:37 AM   #5
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I would want the 50-135. In the 80-200 f/2.8 realm there is also the Pentax FA* - one is on Ebay now for about 1K which is low for that lens. It is noisy and heavy - however it makes great pictures. I also think the focal length may be too long.

Even the 50-135 needs to be augmented by another fast zoom to cover the situations that demand wider shots.
09-04-2015, 11:29 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
I would want the 50-135. In the 80-200 f/2.8 realm there is also the Pentax FA* - one is on Ebay now for about 1K which is low for that lens. It is noisy and heavy - however it makes great pictures. I also think the focal length may be too long.

Even the 50-135 needs to be augmented by another fast zoom to cover the situations that demand wider shots.
So I am hearing yes it can be a bit slow… but… it isn’t that slow. And it will certainly be quick enough for weddings / portraiture.

Can anyone compare the focusing of the 50-135 to the 55-300? I have the 55-300 and know it has a long and slow focus throw.

Whichever lens I get will pair up with my Sigma 17-50 f2.8. I LOVE it. I am spoiled by the silent focusing and the sharp sharp sharp photos. I have the pentax 35mm 2.4 and the 50mm 1.8 plastic fantastic lenses in the event 2.8 isn’t quite fast enough. In fact, I once shot an entire wedding with my 35mm. Very awesome lens.
09-04-2015, 11:36 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blacknight659 Quote
Can anyone compare the focusing of the 50-135 to the 55-300? I have the 55-300 and know it has a long and slow focus throw.
I've owned both. I don't think the 50-135 is all that slow - unless you have action you are tracking. The two lenses seem so different without both in hand I can't say much. I have my 50-135 on permanent loan to my dad and so I can't compare directly.
09-04-2015, 12:49 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by skierd Quote
I ... love my DA* 50-135. Sure the SDM might fail, so what?
Let's hope it does not fail in the middle of your wedding shoot. That is nothing to say so-what about, no? When my SDM failed, it was really at a bad time. It sucked.

09-04-2015, 12:50 PM   #9
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When you go to a wedding you'd hope the bride or the bridgegroom aren't running too fast. So I don't see why you'd need super-fast focus. Focus hunting, on the other hand, could be a problem.

Too bad that the Sigma 50-150 is a bit rare. It's a good alternative to the Pentax 50-135.
09-04-2015, 12:57 PM   #10
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I just found a 50-135 in the fourms at a wonderful price. I sent a PM on it. Hopefully the deal goes through and I have me a nice zoom!

Does anyone have a link on how to convert to the screw drive if the SDM fails?
09-04-2015, 01:10 PM   #11
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I had the tamron and used it for many weddings in the past and anyone saying its too long is kinda right and kinda wrong it is great for when you are in a church that doesn't let you close but then at the reception you need something shorter.
09-05-2015, 09:12 PM   #12
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The Sigma 50-150 HSM is the answer to your problem, but they are few and far between.
09-05-2015, 09:51 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Blacknight659 Quote
I just found a 50-135 in the fourms at a wonderful price. I sent a PM on it. Hopefully the deal goes through and I have me a nice zoom!

Does anyone have a link on how to convert to the screw drive if the SDM fails?
It's definitely accessible on the forum here, given the right search. I know I've seen the 16-50 instructions.
In general the lens acts upset several times before it drops dead, from what I've read - and lack of use tends to come before it acts up. Check with the seller to ensure it's been getting some use in recent months. I had one for a while and never felt anything amiss with it, and focus speed was fine for what I'd think you need. I've a Sigma 18-50 HSM and that's not speedy either, but I'd prefer silence to ultrafast at most indoor events.
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