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02-02-2016, 10:24 PM   #1
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A four lens kit

A friend and fellow Pentaxian who also shoots a little of everything minus sports was showing me his gear one day. I just loved his setup - a K-3 with 4 primes - the DA 15mm f/4, FA 31mm f/1.8, the DA*55mm f/1.4 and the DA 100mm f/2.8. Light, compact and beautiful IQ. While i have a few fast zooms and all the primes excluding the 31, I'm wondering what folks think of his setup. Also what are the four lenses you would keep if that's all you could keep?

02-02-2016, 10:34 PM   #2
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Your friend was lucky to keep his LBA to 4 lenses. I think many on the forum fainted when reading this question !!!
02-02-2016, 10:38 PM   #3
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My most used kit at the moment is: DA15 f4, FA35 f2 and DA 70 f2.4
Sometime I also take a FA50 f1.4

Good enough for most situations. Although sometimes crave having something like a DA21 though.
02-02-2016, 10:40 PM   #4
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I would tend to support your friend's approach, although I have more lenses. His choice is excellent IMHO.

When I travel and have enough luggage space, I would aim for a 4 lens kit consisting of:
- an all-around zoom lens (DA18-135mm or DA18-250mmm/DA18-270mm)
- DA15mm
- Voigtlander Nokton 58mm f1.4 or FA31mm f1.8 Ltd
- FA77mm f1.8 Ltd

Good quality prime lenses have outstanding IQ and do give me a higher keeper rate. Thus I like to have as many primes as I could, although they lack the versatility of an all-around zoom.

As you can see there are two common lenses between your friend and my list.....

My 5 cents.

02-02-2016, 10:42 PM   #5
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K3 with 5 lenses: FA 31 f1.8, FA 43 f1.8, FA 77 f1.7, DA* 200 f2.8 (sigma 17-70 f2.8)
02-02-2016, 10:44 PM   #6
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Primes or zooms or any?



Prime only: DA 15, FA 31, FA 77, DA* 200
Zoom only: DA 12-24, DA 18-135, DA* 50-135, DA* 60-250
Mixed nuts: DA 12-24, FA31, FA77, DA*60-250

That's tough to think out.
02-02-2016, 10:52 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by sumitkar1971 Quote
A friend and fellow Pentaxian who also shoots a little of everything minus sports was showing me his gear one day. I just loved his setup - a K-3 with 4 primes - the DA 15mm f/4, FA 31mm f/1.8, the DA*55mm f/1.4 and the DA 100mm f/2.8. Light, compact and beautiful IQ. While i have a few fast zooms and all the primes excluding the 31, I'm wondering what folks think of his setup. Also what are the four lenses you would keep if that's all you could keep?
well in about 10 hrs I will have all the da primes short of the two big ones plus the 100 macro and the fa31...if I had to roll with just 4 they would be 15, 21, 40 and 100macro.
my running kit now is going to be the K3 with 21 or 40 on it in the bag. my K5II with da35 macro hand carried, the rest of the ltd's in the bag with the 55-300 because I learned the hard way that sometimes you just need to reach out...
02-02-2016, 10:55 PM   #8
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If money was not a factor, my ideal 4 lens kit for APS-C would include the HD DA 15mm f/4 ED AL Limited, HD DA 35mm f/2.8 Macro, SMCP-FA 77mm f/1.8 Limited, and the HD DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED WR. If Lomography made a Petzval 50mm or 85mm f/2.2 for Pentax mount, I'd swap the 77mm for that.

For my 645 film system I'd keep my SMC-A 35mm f/3.5 and SMC-A 75mm f/2.8, and add a SMC-A 120mm f/4 macro and SMC-A 300mm f/4 ED.

NOTE: In Japan, and much of Asia, the number 4 is considered bad luck or related to death. So anyone who knocks on wood, avoids walking under ladders, or is extra careful when a black cat crosses in front of you, I recommend you have a 3 or 5 lens kit. What happened to the Nikon D400? How many times have Pentax named a model with the number 4 in it?


Last edited by Alex645; 02-03-2016 at 04:07 PM.
02-02-2016, 10:59 PM   #9
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Working: DA 12-24, DA*16-50, DA*60-250, DFA 100mm macro
Out & about: DA 16-85, F 70-210, F 50mm f/1.4
Landscape: DA 15mm, DA 21mm, DA 12-24, DA 16-50

Primes are nice, but if I could only four lenses: DA 12-24, DA 16-85, DA 60-250, DFA 150-450
02-02-2016, 11:47 PM   #10
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hmmmm....looking at what i actually have, it would depend on the intended use. for travel, i think DA15/4, F50/1/4, DA18-135 WR, and DA 55-300 HD WR,, although i would like to have a macro in there as well..hmmmm...could trade the F50/1.4 for the A50/2.8 macro...at least until i get the D FA100/2.8 macro...
02-02-2016, 11:58 PM - 1 Like   #11
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My kit usually varies between 3 and 5 lenses depending on lighting, what I'll be shooting, and whether I'm going to be away from home long.

Indoor social events in low light - Sigma 18-35, FA77, DA*55 and maybe the FA43
Hiking or other outdoor activities - DA16-85, DA12-24 or DA10-17, DFA100WR, DA55-300WR
Portrait work - DA*55, FA77, DA*50-135 (though there's usually another bag with lighting kits)
City stuff - DA12-24, DA35 macro, Tamron 28-75
Just messing around, daytime - Q7 with the 01, 02, 06, and 08

Lens selection is tricky - you don't want to be weighed down by tons of gear, but you also want to avoid thinking "I wish I had X lens!" Anticipating what you may want to photograph and how you would want the photograph to look will tell you what you need. Of course if I'm with my wife, I'll just bring the Q with a couple lenses and say "Good enough!"
02-03-2016, 01:08 AM   #12
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haha... my kit is pretty humble compared to the ones posted already. On average it is like this:

K-50 with:

Kalimar 35-135mm f3.5 Macro (1:2),
DA L 18-55mm WR,
DA 35mm f2.4 OR DA 50mm f1.8
DA L 55-200mm WR

That's exactly what's in my bag right now, with the 35mm not the 50. I've oly recently acquired the 35 so I am using that one more. It has made me appreciate how great the 50 is for some things though like portraits, and its nice to have the 35 for every day stuff because it is a much easier/ natural focal length to use o aps-c.
02-03-2016, 02:22 AM   #13
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I recently took the DA15, FA31, and DFA100 on a two week trip, so yeah mostly agree.
02-03-2016, 05:33 AM   #14
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I think your friend have an excellent set of lenses, although I think its a little tight between the 31 and 55mm, and I would miss an allround zoom.

For FF I would choose: Sigma 20mm f/1,4, Pentax 50/1,8 or 55/1,4, a unknown fast 135mm, and an unknown 28-200/3,5-5,6 zoom.
For APS-C I would choose: Samyang 8/3,5, Sigma 18-35/1,8, Pentax 100/2,8 and Pentax 18-135mm WR.

I already have the bold ones (The 28-200 being an old Tamron, but I would like something better)

Last edited by Simen1; 02-03-2016 at 07:46 AM. Reason: Bold
02-03-2016, 06:14 AM   #15
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I like your friend's set-up although it's a little short for the way I like to shoot. I don't have these lenses, but I'd tend to go something more along the lines of 15mm, 35mm macro, 77mm, 200mm. Or maybe 15mm, 43mm, 100mm macro, 200mm. Of the lenses I own, that would translate to 16mm Zenitar, 50mm f4 Pentax macro, 85mm f2.0 Pentax, 200mm Pentax f4 or f2.8 (depending upon whether I wanted speed or light weight). If we're allowed to include zooms, my "small" kit these days is the 16-45 f4, 50mm f4 macro (or 35-105mm), and an 80-200 f2.8. The zoom kit is the one I carry most.
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