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08-20-2008, 08:00 PM   #1
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K200d & 18-250 zoom. Did I do the right thing?

I have just picked up a K200d and the 18-250 zoom. I am off to Africa later in the year and decided that I needed a digital SLR for the trip. I also have been told that space and time are at a premium and therefore only minimum camera gear (ie no tripods etc) is the order of the day. With that in mind I got the setup mentioned above. In looking at some other websites and blogs it appears that I might have shortchanged myself in regard to the length of the zoom if I am to take advantage of any possible animal sightings. (Please note that the photography will have to take a back seat to other activities).
Would a teleconverter be of any use? If so I would appreciate any tips from anyone regarding the best way to use it on my set up.
(I think we need a new smilie - for bewilderment)

08-21-2008, 02:39 AM   #2
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First of all, your choice is great! I would have take 18-250 if it was possible when I was buying my camera, but I had to stick with 18-55/50-200.
And for going to Africa, some * lens would be much better, but Pentax doesn't make them with such zoom range. And are MUCH more expensive anyway
And I mean becauseof weather sealing of those lens. Otherwise, you could try to make some protection for 18-250, mostly due to dust and humidity. And about that, some home made nylon wrap, which wouldn't obstruct lens using (zooming and focusing)
And also get some UV and PL filters...
08-21-2008, 03:57 AM   #3
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I have the Tamron version of this lens and just walked the Kokoda Trail in PNG with it on my K10D. Might be a little short for wild-life shots, but the versatility of this lens is great and not having to change lenses can be as important for getting that quick shot that an animal or bird isn't going to wait around for. I didn't have any trouble with moisture or dirt and we went to some fairly muddy and wet places. I suggest getting a 4 litre dry bag so that it always has somewhere safe to go while you are travelling.
08-21-2008, 07:36 AM   #4
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I think you'll love the combo. No matter what lens you have, there will always be shots that you can't take. However, with the 18-250, you've vastly increased the number of shots you can take.

Also, I've read about some of the photo safaris, and the animals can get really close. One of the pro's in one of the magazines was shooting with a 70-200 and an elephant charged the truck. He wasn't able to zoom wide enough to capture all the action. Your 18-250 would've been perfect in that case.

I've taken numerous trips with just this lens and I've never felt like I missed a shot.

08-21-2008, 09:45 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by gtk Quote
Would a teleconverter be of any use?
Sure, but I wouldn't expect it to produce better results than simply cropping the images you take without it. If you aren't printing *huge*, the K200D has more than enough resolution for that. And if you are printing huge, that would probably just expose the inherent weaknesses of the TC/lens combo.
08-21-2008, 09:58 AM   #6
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This is a great outdoor combo, you'll be happy with the results.
08-22-2008, 03:21 PM   #7
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Thanks for the input from everyone. The dry bag sounds like a good idea as I will be in Africa during the wet season. Thanks again
08-22-2008, 04:00 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by rfortson Quote
I think you'll love the combo. No matter what lens you have, there will always be shots that you can't take. However, with the 18-250, you've vastly increased the number of shots you can take.

Also, I've read about some of the photo safaris, and the animals can get really close. One of the pro's in one of the magazines was shooting with a 70-200 and an elephant charged the truck. He wasn't able to zoom wide enough to capture all the action. Your 18-250 would've been perfect in that case.

I've taken numerous trips with just this lens and I've never felt like I missed a shot.

Per the above, we'll keep our fingers crossed that you have the good fortune of being charged by an elephant. Just kidding!!!
Bottom line is that there is no single lens that is fast enough, short enough, long enough, small enough, cheap enough, sharp enough to do it all. I've got the 18-250 which I took to Disneyworld and the beach and it worked great. I've found it to be a very good all around out door zoom. Will it be fast enough to catch a running animal? Depending on the speed of the critter, the extent of the zoom, and the amount of daylight, you should be pretty good (certainly for the charging elephant.) Congrats on your purchase. Learn how to use it as it sounds like one of those rare opportunity trips, and you'll want some great shots/memories!

PS I've got a LowePro (sp?) that has a built in raincover which has proven to be handy (depending on how wet you plan on getting.)

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