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04-09-2016, 06:30 AM   #16
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The DA 18-135 is the only thing that fits the bill for you it seems, and I have seen one used on here in the 200 dollar range before.

04-09-2016, 06:46 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by hal55 Quote
but it must be capable of magazine quality work. I have been published in "Camera for Enthusiast" magazine in Australia and write occasional travel pieces, which is the reason I'm after a step up from the kit lens without breaking the bank.
You might want to check out this thread.
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/10-pentax-slr-lens-discussion/316760-reso...ven-close.html

It would suggest that getting an appropriate range and aperture is your only real concern. Being good enough for magazine images isn't really an issue these days. Being good enough for a 60" x 40" print is, the going concern.

If you're going to shoot a lot indoors, you need at least ƒ2.8. You mention the embroidery show. I might even look at something like Tamron 17-50 for that.
If you're mentioning sand dunes, in sunlight, that DA 18-135 or DA 16-85 with weather and dust seals , and the ability to shoot without changing lenses is important. There is not much that is worse than dust from out door lens changes, in gritty environments.
04-09-2016, 07:10 AM   #18
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DA* 16-50 offers weather sealing and f/2.8, however it is expensive, heavy, and prone to motor failure (but can be converted to screw drice). DISCLAIMER: I don't own this lens, I have only used a few samples for test shots.

Personally I love my 18-135.

Other options none weather sealed, none really low light friendly:
DA 18-200
DA 18-250
FA 28-200
DA 18-270
F 35-135
04-09-2016, 10:31 AM   #19
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I compared most of these and ended up with the tamron 17-50. Here in the states it is cheap. It is very light. I shoot it mostly wide open and it is very good. Stopped down it is excellent for landscape. Clearly better than the kit in all ways except chromatic abberation which can pop up sometimes but is easy to fix. My only niggle is inconsistent focusing on the K50. It usually hits but it also has some wild misses that I don't see with my Pentax lenses. I think this is partly the K50 struggling with f2.8 though. The longer variable zooms are just too slow for much of my shooting and wouldnt be ideal indoors without a good flash but if I could make better use of a lot of f4+ then my choice might be different.

04-09-2016, 10:37 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by mgoblue Quote
Clearly better than the kit in all ways except chromatic abberation which can pop up sometimes but is easy to fix. My only niggle is inconsistent focusing on the K50. It usually hits but it also has some wild misses that I don't see with my Pentax lenses.
Interesting, in my own testing the Tamron was the most reliable in terms of percentage of sharp focus hits, except for one day when I couldn't get anything from it and had to focus it manually. The the next day it was fine again. If you can do without the weather and dust seals and the long end it might work for you, but I'd also look at the Sigma 17-50, which may or may not be even better. Without a hands on evaluation, I'd go with which ever one is cheapest.

Right now the Sigma is on sale at B&H for $250 off, and is $419. You could pay more for a used one. Looks like the best deal out there at the moment.

But unless you need ƒ2.8 for indoor or low light, the 18-135 or 16-85 are very close in IQ over that range, and offer much more useful ranges.

Last edited by normhead; 04-09-2016 at 03:13 PM.
04-09-2016, 02:56 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by hal55 Quote
Some excellent recommendations, but so far they are panning out more expensive than the Sigma barring a good second hand example coming up, which is something I'll keep my eye out for.
Many PF members suggested the DA18-135mm, a WR lens that would fit nicely the rainfall pattern at Tamborine Mountain (1400 mm annual rainfall for last 6 years).

However you seem committed for the Sigma. Go for it, it is a great lens and you should not be disappointed. Just use TLC (tender, love & care) with your lens.

Last edited by hcc; 04-09-2016 at 07:59 PM.
04-09-2016, 05:10 PM   #22
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You can, of course, go full manual on any lens. There's no code going on in the glass.

If publishing is your aim, then scrimping on glass is no way to go. Much better to find the lens that does what you need then work out how to pay for it, than start with a budget and choose a lens to match.
04-09-2016, 06:01 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
For the price the Sigma 17-70mm ("C" version) is probably going to be the best value
I continue to love my Sigma 17-70 (C), though I would caution that it is not a piece of lightweight kit and the FOV at 70mm and moderate distance is closer to that of a 50mm prime due to heavy "focus breathing". You might want to consider an AF prime for your K-50. I have a FA 35/2 that I use as a compact/light walk-around. I have found it to be a competent performer and useful for many subjects.

FWIW...The DA 35/2.4 has similar optical design at a lower price point with hood and pouch being additional cost.


Steve

04-09-2016, 06:10 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by hcc Quote
However you seem committed for the Sigma. Go for it, it is a great lens and you should not be disappointed. Just use TLC with you lens.
Absolutely! Though the Sigma 17-70 (C) is not particularly fragile or susceptible to wet. While taking the photo below, both lens and camera were quite saturated by mist and I had to wipe the front element several times while trying various compositions. It did not occur to me until I was hiking out that I could have seriously damaged the Sigma.




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04-10-2016, 12:16 PM   #25
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You can't go wrong with the 18-135 for outdoor conditions - and even well-lit indoor ones. I keep it on my camera on the shelf, handy to pick up for something out the window or a walk in the park. I can't imagine not having it.

Used, they hold up really well and sport affordable prices. Here's just one example from the forum:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/24-photographic-equipment-sale/318534-sal...a-16-50-a.html
04-13-2016, 07:11 PM   #26
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Thanks to all for the advice, there are several good suggestions at different price points. I've started listing surplus film lenses on ebay and will see where the funds finish up once the sales are complete. Hopefully K50s will still be available once the auctions finish and Paypal's three week retaining period for funds expired. Didn't know anything about that unfortunately till I started listing.

Hal55
04-13-2016, 08:40 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by hal55 Quote
Thanks to all for the advice, there are several good suggestions at different price points. I've started listing surplus film lenses on ebay and will see where the funds finish up once the sales are complete. Hopefully K50s will still be available once the auctions finish and Paypal's three week retaining period for funds expired. Didn't know anything about that unfortunately till I started listing.

Hal55
What three week retaining period? Paypal can hold money and they do sometimes if they don't fully trust the transactions. But routinely they don't as a rule hold all inbound money from auctions or other sources for any set period of time.
04-13-2016, 11:19 PM   #28
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I am surprised no one has suggested the cheapish kit alternate - the DA16-45. More breadth and good constant F4 through the range. Quite cheap. But quite large.
04-17-2016, 03:42 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arjay Bee Quote
I am surprised no one has suggested the cheapish kit alternate - the DA16-45. More breadth and good constant F4 through the range. Quite cheap. But quite large.
Probably because it is not exotic enough ...

Flickriver: kh1234567890's photos tagged with smcpda1645mmf40edal
04-17-2016, 04:38 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by kh1234567890 Quote
Probably because it is not exotic enough ...

Flickriver: kh1234567890's photos tagged with smcpda1645mmf40edal

It would seem a very sound upgrade.
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