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07-10-2008, 07:29 AM   #1
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Specific Wide Angle (20-26) Advice Sought

I am shooting on a K20D

Over the past 20 years or so I really haven't done much wide angle photography for pleasure and certainly none for business. But now that I am traveling more, and have more time on my hands, I am noticing the desire to go a bit wider (than 40mm), specifically to shoot more scenic landscapes and candid street photography, and maybe a few interesting interiors of historic type buildings.

I had borrowed a wide angle zoom (Pentax DA 16-45) and noticed that the range I am looking for is around 20 to 26. I am looking for a prime or a zoom, as long as the zoom renders this range well and is faster than the F4. I am looking for detail to fit with the K20D and nice contrast and color.

All comments and opinions welcomed...

I currently have the DA40 ltd., FA43 ltd., and DA35 Macro ltd. in the below 50mm range as a bunch of lenses longer than that. I like the way the DA35 renders up close but detail seems lost when shooting at infinity. I like the DA40 and FA43 a lot for this purpose and would like to find something similar but shorter than 40. And not a Fish-Eye...

I was thinking about :
DA 21 ltd.
DA*16-50
DA 12-24
???


Thank you

07-10-2008, 07:36 AM   #2
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I would think the DA21 Ltd would be a natural progression based on what you already have in your kit. The 16-50 would probably be a better choice of you wanted to go wider.

The 24mm/2.8 Sigma Super Wide (AF-version) is a fantastic lens in that range. There's also a manual focus version if AF is not important to you. If you can find one, it'll run in the $150ish range on eBay.
07-10-2008, 07:41 AM   #3
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I agree with Maxwell. The Sigma Super wide II 24mm is a very good lens if you can find one. If not the Pentax 21mm is the logical choice. Everyone that owns one likes it. It's a bit slower than you might want but a good lens. Another option might be the Sigma 18-50mm f2.8 EX macro version. Theres one on our marketplace right now and that is reported to be an excellent lens.
07-10-2008, 07:49 AM   #4
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i have a DA21 and i think it's an alright lens. not the greatest performer, but it works well and the small size is very handy and great for indiscrete street photography. if you're interested in trying it out, I can bring it out to the meet on Sunday and you can check it out.

also consider the Sigma 10-20 and the soon to be out Tamron 10-24. (but they are not fast)


Last edited by k100d; 07-10-2008 at 08:13 AM.
07-10-2008, 07:58 AM   #5
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Have the DA21 and it is a very good lens. Very unobtrusive and great for candids. The other option I like in the focal range is the FA 20-35mm f/4 of which there is one in the B&S. This lens is exceptional in colour rendition and is pretty compact too. If you don't want to spend a lot, the DA18-55 II kit lens is very cheap and better than it's predecessor. The DA16-45mm is also pretty good and can be picked up pretty reasonably.
07-10-2008, 08:20 AM   #6
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are you sure of the range 20-26mm?

I note your interests, and historic building interiors is something I do quite regularly when travelling. For those, I rely almost exclusively on a sigma 10-20mm, and also for exterior shots, because in most cities you can't get back far enough.
07-10-2008, 08:54 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by k100d Quote
i have a DA21 and i think it's an alright lens. not the greatest performer, but it works well and the small size is very handy and great for indiscrete street photography. if you're interested in trying it out, I can bring it out to the meet on Sunday and you can check it out.

also consider the Sigma 10-20 and the soon to be out Tamron 10-24. (but they are not fast)


Thank you, I'd like to check it out. Might work out well for walking around

QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
I note your interests, and historic building interiors is something I do quite regularly when travelling. For those, I rely almost exclusively on a sigma 10-20mm, and also for exterior shots, because in most cities you can't get back far enough.


You are right about that, for this purpose, even going down to 16 I didn't get all the shots I wanted to and most that I did were 16-20 range!

Maxwell and Peter:
I hadn't thought about a Sigma prime, I appreciate the tip on the 24 Super Wide, I'll check into that.

So, it's seeming like this will turn into more than one lens, perhaps an ultra-wide zoom for when I get into tighter spaces or larger areas to cover and then a good rendering prime for landscapes.

I appreciated all the replies!
07-10-2008, 09:06 AM   #8
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Consider the whole travel package

I think, given the last comment given by the OP that it is time to consider the entire travel package.

you need really to get from 10 mm to 150mm (135 may do) and if you add wildlife, to perhaps 400mm with as little weight as you can, while (in my opinion) covering from somewhere in the 20mm range up to 150/200mm at F2.8

Depending on your feelings about 3rd party vs pentax lenses there are ton's (sometimes litterally in terms of lens weight) of ways to achieve this.

My basic travel lens kit is 4 zooms plus 2 TCs
Sigma 10-20
Pentax FA-J18-35
Tamron 28-75 F2.8
Sigma 70-200 F2.8 (plus 1.4x and 2X TCs)

if I want to travel lighter, and I have no nature shots, I drop the 70-200 and the 2 TCs but add my 135F2.5 (MF) (it is actually smaller and lighter than the tamron 28-75)

Lighter still I drop the 18-35 and accept the 20mm to 28 mm gap

It is all based upon how you want to cover the range, but I have found the 10-20 indespensible for visiting historic sites.

07-10-2008, 09:30 AM   #9
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regarding the DA 21 Ltd

this is my own unbaised test where i took the time with both lenses to try and get the best pictures, you can read my conlusions in the third last post.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/31453-some-wide-angle-tests.html

Last edited by Gooshin; 07-10-2008 at 09:39 AM.
07-10-2008, 10:05 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gooshin Quote
regarding the DA 21 Ltd

this is my own unbaised test where i took the time with both lenses to try and get the best pictures, you can read my conlusions in the third last post.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/31453-some-wide-angle-tests.html
Pictures speak a thousand..... Well done tests. For me the purpose of having a prime is to outperform the zoom when you want or need it to. As far as a small form factor I have the FA43. So I might raise some money for the FA31 as my prime (especially if it is like my FA43 and FA77) and then get a ultra-wide zoom. Just not decided whether or not I need the DA*16-50 or not on top of all that.

A couple zooms and a prime or two for walk around would be easy to do.


Thanks for the link
07-10-2008, 11:15 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by augustmoon Quote
Pictures speak a thousand..... Well done tests. For me the purpose of having a prime is to outperform the zoom when you want or need it to. As far as a small form factor I have the FA43. So I might raise some money for the FA31 as my prime (especially if it is like my FA43 and FA77) and then get a ultra-wide zoom. Just not decided whether or not I need the DA*16-50 or not on top of all that.

A couple zooms and a prime or two for walk around would be easy to do.


Thanks for the link
i am currently saving for the DA*16-50 because this will give me a good "tourist" lens. Like when you are out with friends for the night, or if you go travelling, and leave the FA Ltd's for actual project work.
07-10-2008, 12:06 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by augustmoon Quote
Pictures speak a thousand..... Well done tests. For me the purpose of having a prime is to outperform the zoom when you want or need it to. As far as a small form factor I have the FA43. So I might raise some money for the FA31 as my prime (especially if it is like my FA43 and FA77) and then get a ultra-wide zoom. Just not decided whether or not I need the DA*16-50 or not on top of all that.
everyone can use an FA31. it's just sooo good.
07-10-2008, 12:14 PM   #13
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Hi, augustmoon!

Although you seem to made up your mind I want to tell you that DA 21 has trully a "limited soul". It has some flaws too (some CA, some distorsion) but it has many qualities too. I have mine for 2 days and in some informal tests it's the most "atmosferic" lens I have so far. It all boils down to your style but for its size and build quality I say it's worth it.

Hope it helps,
Radu
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