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08-10-2017, 02:57 AM - 1 Like   #16
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I went all over the USA last Spring and going to Japan won't be different. Take any wide angle between 15mm to 24mm ( I had the 21mm) , a 50mm and a long telephoto (I had the 55-300). You will be surprised that a 300mm would be used quite a lot.

08-10-2017, 04:50 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote
Most of the time I manage with the FA*300, albeit that I do crop significantly. Fortunately the K-3II's 24MP amply allows for that. Actually, the FA*300 got me some great bird shots in Nicaragua last November. Still not sure I'm willing to take it for a handful of shots though.
Yes, you do...! I know I missed sth a little longer in Kamikochi. That's why I decided to get the DA* 60-250. Still contemplating the DA 1.4 TC as I find it a bit expensive, but might as well go for that...


QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote
Hmm, that's the choice I make most of the time, i.e. 20-40 plus a wider prime (mostly the Samyang 16/2). For UWA I prefer the Samyang 10/2.8. However, the DA*16-50/2.8 is better sealed against the elements and covers a wider angle, which I have found practical on long travel. Also, it has a 77mm filter size, which is the size of all my filters. Since I intend to do quite a bit of long exposures, that's an important point too. Unfortunately the Sigma 8-16 doesn't take filters, so I would need to add the Samyang 16/2 to have the 16mm FoV with filters (=my favourite FoV).
I know 16mm is your sweetspot, but I thought since you already take the Sigma with you The 20-40 LTD would suffice. Now you explained, I understand.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote
You would be surprised. I tested yesterday when I was cleaning lenses for an upcoming weekend trip. The Everyday Backpack 20L (still my pre-production review sample looking as new as ever after about 10 months of daily use) easily takes the FA*300/4.5, Sigma 8-16 and DA*50-135/2.8 (in that order bottom up), leaving enough room along the latter two to hold the K-3II with the DA*16-50/2.8. That leaves the entire top compartment free. With the camera out of the bag I could even add two lenses in the space thus freed up (those lenses could be in an expanded top during transfers). So that brings the DA10-17 and the DA35/2.8 macro back into the picture, even with the FA*300 in the bag...

Tx for your thoughts!

Wim
I cannot believe you will make a lot of shots with both the Sigma and the 10-17, but then I am not a big fan of UWA. One idea is to leave the Sigma at home and take the Samyang 10mm instead? I know I would love to have the 10-17 again but I am not all that certain I would take it with me to Japan. Of course that is all just me. One word of advice, take the 50 macro instead of the 35 LTD. You will have a little more working distance and it is not that much bigger or heavier...
08-10-2017, 06:04 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jonathan Mac Quote
I recently went on a trip to Japan and used my DA limited lenses for almost everything. The vast majority of my shots were taken with the DA 35mm and the 21mm, with a bit of use of the 70 and 15 and for two days almost everything was shot with the 18-55 WR because it rained all day.

Using primes was enjoyable and produced great quality images (as always with the DA ltds) but did require a lot of swapping. A DA 20-40mm would maybe have been ideal but I don't have that and it's a very expensive lens for what it offers. I had some old primes with me too (M 50/1.7, A 28/2.8 and M 120/2.8) because I also shot film but I rarely used those on the K3 and after a few days the 120mm stayed at home because it wasn't getting enough use to merit carrying it all day.
I love shooting primes as well. Actually, this is the reason why I love the DA20-40 so much. I see it as a 30mm prime with some framing flexibility, not so much as a zoom. However, the risk of rain is the most important reason for the two DA*'s; both of which have been tried and tested in soaking wet circumstances.

QuoteOriginally posted by Jonathan Mac Quote
As with everything, what you need will depend on your shooting style and preferences (and maybe the weather) much more than on where you're going.
I agree shooting style is the most important decision factor for lenses. For all subject matter except wildlife... Hence my main question relating to the FA*300/4.5.

---------- Post added 10-08-17 at 15:07 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by mannyquinto Quote
I went all over the USA last Spring and going to Japan won't be different. Take any wide angle between 15mm to 24mm ( I had the 21mm) , a 50mm and a long telephoto (I had the 55-300). You will be surprised that a 300mm would be used quite a lot.
I can see why a trip to the USA would see much use for a 300mm. Any trip I would undertake to Northern America would be very wildlife oriented. Thing is I'm not so sure about Japan. I'm not much of a fan of extreme tele except for wildlife. But having tested the capacity of the bag I will be taking, I'm inclined to take the FA*300/4.5 regardless.

---------- Post added 10-08-17 at 15:17 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxke Quote
Yes, you do...! I know I missed sth a little longer in Kamikochi. That's why I decided to get the DA* 60-250. Still contemplating the DA 1.4 TC as I find it a bit expensive, but might as well go for that...
Ok, ok, Having testing the capacity of my bag, I'll take the FA*300/4.5.

QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxke Quote
I know 16mm is your sweetspot, but I thought since you already take the Sigma with you The 20-40 LTD would suffice. Now you explained, I understand.
I knew you would. Let's hope I'll find the opportunities for those long exposures.

QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxke Quote
I cannot believe you will make a lot of shots with both the Sigma and the 10-17, but then I am not a big fan of UWA. One idea is to leave the Sigma at home and take the Samyang 10mm instead? I know I would love to have the 10-17 again but I am not all that certain I would take it with me to Japan. Of course that is all just me.
Well, the Sigma 8-16 will be great for interiors at least. Also, I generally include some panoramic street views in my photo books (8:3 ratio), and the 8-16 allows me to capture these in one go. But the Samyang 10/2.8 would do as well of course, and it lets in more light (astro: who knows there might be an opportunity?). It is slightly larger and heavier though... The DA10-17 is for carefully selected effect shots. Last time I used it, I took it to Myanmar three years ago and only shot 2 or 3 images with it, but all were among my favourites of the trip. Think I *will* go for the 10/2.8 and the DA10-17...

QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxke Quote
One word of advice, take the 50 macro instead of the 35 LTD. You will have a little more working distance and it is not that much bigger or heavier...
Good point. I see I will need some more thinking to decide which prime will take the last spot in the bag...

Tx again all!!

Wim

Last edited by Ishpuini; 08-10-2017 at 06:38 AM.
08-10-2017, 06:51 AM   #19
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You won't regret the FA*300. It's so tiny (for what it offers) you really have nothing to lose - even if it only comes out for a couple of shots when 135mm is way too short.


Last edited by Sandy Hancock; 08-10-2017 at 07:10 AM. Reason: typo
08-10-2017, 06:59 AM   #20
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Astro: depends on where you go and what weather you have, but should be (more than) possible. Kamikochi would have been great for that, but the rain decided sth completely else...

On a sidenote: both DA* need the screwdriver thingy fix I think? You say when we do that (my K-5's are waiting for ya...)
08-10-2017, 07:09 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxke Quote
On a sidenote: both DA* need the screwdriver thingy fix I think?
My DA*16-50 is converted to crew drive, but my DA*50-135 is still going strong five years down the track....
08-10-2017, 07:31 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
You won't regret the FA*300. It's so tiny (for what it offers) you really have nothing to lose - even if it only comes out for a couple of shots when 135mm is way too short.
True. I never found it particularly small until I saw what others carried for 300mm on a wildlife photography workshop, and even more when I purchased the DFA150-450... Now it almost feels like a pancake...

---------- Post added 10-08-17 at 16:34 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxke Quote
Astro: depends on where you go and what weather you have, but should be (more than) possible. Kamikochi would have been great for that, but the rain decided sth completely else...
One can only hope...

QuoteOriginally posted by Pentaxke Quote
On a sidenote: both DA* need the screwdriver thingy fix I think? You say when we do that (my K-5's are waiting for ya...)
I managed MF on both in Nicaragua, with only a handful of miss focused images, but AF would be great. I'll contact you soon... Tx!!

---------- Post added 10-08-17 at 16:45 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Sandy Hancock Quote
My DA*16-50 is converted to crew drive, but my DA*50-135 is still going strong five years down the track....
Unfortunately both my 16-50 and 50-135 started squeaking and requiring an ever longer wake-up protocol about 3 years ago, so had them both serviced, which bought me 2 more years of functioning SDM. Until last November in Nicaragua, first day out and both refused AF for the entire 3 week trip, except for the 50-135 briefly reviving the very last day. Since I'm used to using manual focus I managed allright, but would have preferred otherwise... Still, I'm converting them both. BTW, both lenses are celebrating their 10th year in my possession as I write (I received them half August 2007)...

Last edited by Ishpuini; 08-10-2017 at 07:47 AM.
08-20-2017, 11:54 PM   #23
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Update to the screw drive conversion. I did both the 16-50 and 50-135 using a K-5 body (tx Pentaxke for your help in providing the camera!!). It worked like a charm. I think I had both lenses' screw drive AF working in under half an hour. A bit more noise, but at least I'm done with MF on these... Never minded MF on fixed focal lengths, but on zooms that's two rings to turn, which is one ring too many for fast photography.

Wim

08-21-2017, 01:07 AM   #24
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Glad I could be of help, Wim. I was also surprised at how fast you got them converted...!
08-21-2017, 02:14 AM - 1 Like   #25
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Weather in general:
As I live around Tokyo, so I will mainly talk about Tokyo… well, Japan is not a continent like the USA, so weather will be pretty much similar from Tokyo down to Osaka.

Early October is still had one of its foot in the rainy season. Good news is you will get fewer changes to see Typhon days. It usually comfortable warm to cool and low humidity. The trees start to change color. WR lens like 20-40 is good. However, October rain is not heavy. I often use prime during autumn’s raining day, a palm of hand is enough to protect lens from the rain unless it is Typhon, but you don’t want to walk outside during typhoon is spinding above our head anyway.

November will see less to no rain. It is the best month of the year, IMO. It will be very colorful everywhere. I don’t think you have to worry about rain during November.

I didn’t see Kawakuchiko in your list! I might miss it but If you don’t have it in your list, put it there. You will like it. If you have a lot of time, spend a night or two there.

Lens;
You can pack as many as you want and selectively use it based on place you go each day and leave the rest in hotel room. Or don’t pack too many and buy it as you go. As far as I can see, every camera store carries Pentax lenses. Shinjuku has a lot of second hand shop. IMO, 21 and 50 can do every city / landscape shot for me. I prefer pack light so that I can walk longer = more chances to shoot. Do you have tripod in your list? If you plan to do night photo, I would add a tripod to the list too. Something like gorilla pod is good. ( In tight space Tokyo, It can be better than a full size tripod.) But again, you can buy it here when / if you need it.

Other;
Find an opportunity to go out for night photography too. Japan is incredibly safe (talk from a foreigner perspective). So walking at night shouldn’t be a concern. But make sure you have google map in your phone. Offline google translate apps can keep Japanese / English for offline use. It can be handy when order food or ask questions.
Last, check out my blog, I have walking map and photographing spots in Tokyo there. It might be helpful for you.
If you are in Tokyo and want to go out for a night shooting during a weekend, feel free to PM me on my Facebook page or Instagram a few day or week earlier, If time permits, I will be happy to meet and show you some places.


Last of the last, when you are in Tokyo, check out 1:1 size Gundam in Odaiba. They are building it since last week and it should be done soon. I will go snap a few photos may be later this week. The old one looks like this, the new one will be a Unicorn! I am not joking; the robot name is Unicorn Gundum. I am not a fan so I am not sure about its full name, but whatever comes with word Unicorn in its name, I expect it to be beyond awesome!


Last edited by pakinjapan; 08-21-2017 at 02:33 AM.
08-21-2017, 03:26 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Weather in general:
As I live around Tokyo, so I will mainly talk about Tokyo… well, Japan is not a continent like the USA, so weather will be pretty much similar from Tokyo down to Osaka.

Early October is still had one of its foot in the rainy season. Good news is you will get fewer changes to see Typhon days. It usually comfortable warm to cool and low humidity. The trees start to change color. WR lens like 20-40 is good. However, October rain is not heavy. I often use prime during autumn’s raining day, a palm of hand is enough to protect lens from the rain unless it is Typhon, but you don’t want to walk outside during typhoon is spinding above our head anyway.

November will see less to no rain. It is the best month of the year, IMO. It will be very colorful everywhere. I don’t think you have to worry about rain during November.

Good to know tx!!

QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
I didn’t see
QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Kawakuchiko in your list! I might miss it but If you don’t have it in your list, put it there. You will like it. If you have a lot of time, spend a night or two there.
We are indeed planning to go there on a day trip from Tokyo. Haven't planned spending a night there though, but we might reconsider.

QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Lens;
QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
You can pack as many as you want and selectively use it based on place you go each day and leave the rest in hotel room. Or don’t pack too many and buy it as you go. As far as I can see, every camera store carries Pentax lenses. Shinjuku has a lot of second hand shop. IMO, 21 and 50 can do every city / landscape shot for me. I prefer pack light so that I can walk longer = more chances to shoot. Do you have tripod in your list? If you plan to do night photo, I would add a tripod to the list too. Something like gorilla pod is good. ( In tight space Tokyo, It can be better than a full size tripod.) But again, you can buy it here when / if you need it.
Indeed, that's what I always do: leave the lenses I won't use in the hotel room or put them protected in my main luggage. However, I need to be able pack it all in the camera bag for the flights. I've known luggage to go (temporarily) lost in airports too many times, and don't want to risk losing camera gear.
I will probably take my 3LT Leo tripod for the purpose of night photography. I'm also packing some ND filters for daytime long exposures BTW.

QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Other;
QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Find an opportunity to go out for night photography too. Japan is incredibly safe (talk from a foreigner perspective). So walking at night shouldn’t be a concern. But make sure you have google map in your phone. Offline google translate apps can keep Japanese / English for offline use. It can be handy when order food or ask questions.
Last, check out my blog, I have walking map and photographing spots in Tokyo there. It might be helpful for you.
If you are in Tokyo and want to go out for a night shooting during a weekend, feel free to PM me on my Facebook page or Instagram a few day or week earlier, If time permits, I will be happy to meet and show you some places.
I've had very different reports on the usefulness of Google Maps in Japan. I'm used to downloading off-line maps of areas I travel to, but it seems for Japan it would come in Japanese script only, which I do not read... Adding off-line translation might help indeed.
Thanks for the offer, not sure we'll be in Tokyo on a week-end though. Will update...

QuoteOriginally posted by pakinjapan Quote
Last of the last, when you are in Tokyo, check out 1:1 size Gundam in Odaiba. They are building it since last week and it should be done soon. I will go snap a few photos may be later this week. The old one looks like this, the new one will be a Unicorn! I am not joking; the robot name is Unicorn Gundum. I am not a fan so I am not sure about its full name, but whatever comes with word Unicorn in its name, I expect it to be beyond awesome!

Seems a fun subject indeed. If we're in the area, I'll make sure to go and have a look! tx!

Tx for your tips!
Wim
08-21-2017, 03:41 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote

I've had very different reports on the usefulness of Google Maps in Japan. I'm used to downloading off-line maps of areas I travel to, but it seems for Japan it would come in Japanese script only, which I do not read...
It could be depend on your Google account language setting too. I am a tipical foriener here, which mean I can not a read most Japanese alphabet / Kanji. I have no problem using the map. It comes in both English and Japanese. But in Japan, google doesn't offer save offline map. If I need offline map, what I am doing is going to the map on the area I plan to go while I still have the connection and zoom in + move around the area a bit so that the phone will keep that part of map's information in the cach. GPS still works with map wihout internet. and usually every subway and large department store has free internet.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote

Seems a fun subject indeed. If we're in the area, I'll make sure to go and have a look! tx!
Odaiba is a man made island infront of Tokyo, On the west side of the island is Tokyo. It is the place you can get to see sunset behind tokyo skyline. If you have ever seen a video clip of Japan big earthquake a few year back, some dude video the ground moving up and down with wather shooting up from the gap right infront of him, that taken from a park in Odaiba
Toyota main and larget show room is also there. (If you like car)

Last edited by pakinjapan; 08-21-2017 at 03:46 PM.
08-21-2017, 04:40 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ishpuini Quote

I've had very different reports on the usefulness of Google Maps in Japan. I'm used to downloading off-line maps of areas I travel to, but it seems for Japan it would come in Japanese script only, which I do not read... Adding off-line translation might help indeed.
Thanks for the offer, not sure we'll be in Tokyo on a week-end though. Will update...


Google Maps don't have a license for downloading offline maps for Japan. I use the MAPS.ME app that works pretty well, you can edit maps to put in particular points of interest before you go & then use your GPS once you're there.


I've also read that you can export a Google Maps map in kml file format and then import with another offline map app, e.g. OsmAnd or MAPS.ME. I haven't tried this yet, but I will for my trip in October.
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