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02-25-2018, 12:39 PM   #1
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Owning both a 18-50 WR and an 18-135 WR

I recently bought a KS2 with the 18-50 WR lens. I think I would rather have the 18-135 WR for an all round lens. I believe I can probably trade the dealer for the new to new difference in price, about $320, or I can buy a used 18-135 EWR in great shape for about$250 (both CDN dollars) and then perhaps sell the 18-50. Is there any really good reason to own both lenses?

02-25-2018, 12:50 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dean2 Quote
I recently bought a KS2 with the 18-50 WR lens. I think I would rather have the 18-135 WR for an all round lens. I believe I can probably trade the dealer for the new to new difference in price, about $320, or I can buy a used 18-135 EWR in great shape for about$250 (both CDN dollars) and then perhaps sell the 18-50. Is there any really good reason to own both lenses?
It's smaller and lighter, Dean, isn't it? People have been known to swap brands for that reason.

02-25-2018, 01:14 PM   #3
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The only reason is it fits in your pocket. I am going out soon and rain is quite possible. I am taking my 40xs and my 18-50. If or when it rains i can easily switch them. Without another pocketable lens it would not matter to me.
02-25-2018, 01:15 PM   #4
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Have you considered 16-85? It's more expensive, but significantly outperforms 18-135 in terms of IQ.

02-25-2018, 01:16 PM   #5
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I recently bought the 18-50 after owning the 18-135 for many years. I haven't shot with it yet, but i got it both for the size and the fact it was cheap. My expectation is that the size isn't enough of a reason to carry it in most situations where the 18-135 would work for me. When I want to go really small I use M43.


Edit: the 18-50 that is included in kits is typically the DAL which is not sold by itself so the price difference may be more than expected.
02-25-2018, 01:24 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentageek Quote
Have you considered 16-85? It's more expensive, but significantly outperforms 18-135 in terms of IQ.

Is it a WR. The reason I ask is; this KS2 was bought specifically for shooting outdoors in bad conditions like Africa, Northern Canada, and places that are not nice to regular cameras.

Your comment that it is slightly smaller is valid, however, the camera is carried in a bag, along with the spare gear, or under my Gortex jacket or pull over in a Bino case when not in use. Rarely would I put a DSLR into a pocket, one they are too large to fit comfortably and two, far too much chance they will suffer a really big hit on vehicles, rocks etc as one moves around.

---------- Post added 02-25-18 at 01:26 PM ----------

Is there a way to edit posts on here once submitted. I figured out how to edit the subject or header line but not the body of the post. The last post should have said those that commented it is smaller, rather than Your ......
02-25-2018, 02:18 PM   #7
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In case you quoted correct post - yes, 16-85 is WR, for details please check forum lens database. If you want to use the camera in harsh environment, maybe prime would be better option? Less parts which can break and minimal (if any) 'breathing effect' what means less air getting in and out of camera and lens.
02-25-2018, 02:40 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dean2 Quote
Is it a WR. The reason I ask is; this KS2 was bought specifically for shooting outdoors in bad conditions like Africa, Northern Canada, and places that are not nice to regular cameras.

Your comment that it is slightly smaller is valid, however, the camera is carried in a bag, along with the spare gear, or under my Gortex jacket or pull over in a Bino case when not in use. Rarely would I put a DSLR into a pocket, one they are too large to fit comfortably and two, far too much chance they will suffer a really big hit on vehicles, rocks etc as one moves around.

---------- Post added 02-25-18 at 01:26 PM ----------

Is there a way to edit posts on here once submitted. I figured out how to edit the subject or header line but not the body of the post. The last post should have said those that commented it is smaller, rather than Your ......
To the lower right of your post there should be an "Edit Message" button. If you need more than a simple edit, inside that dialog box is a "Go Advanced" button.

02-25-2018, 02:53 PM - 2 Likes   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentageek Quote
Have you considered 16-85? It's more expensive, but significantly outperforms 18-135 in terms of IQ.
Well, no it doesn't from 85mm to 135 mm the 18-135 significantly out performs it. Thats a range of 50mm. From 16-18 the 16-85 out performs the 18-135, that's a range of 2 mm, however it may be an important consideration.

The 16-85 is almost as bad at 16mm as the 18-135 is at 18

The 18-135 is better at 24mm

At 50 mm the 16-85 is better at ƒ4.5 and at ƒ8 the 18-135 is slightly better

At 85mm the 16-85 is better.

Pentax HD DA 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6 ED DC WR - Review / Test Report - Analysis
Pentax SMC-DA 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 ED AL [IF] WR - Review / Lens Test - Analysis

So in terms of "Significantly outperforms", no, definitely not. It out performs in some areas, but it is completely dependant on how you plan to use the lens. I use it as a walk around and as an all purpose lens it's better just because it's longer. The 18-135 is also centersharp through it's whole range. Meaning for portraits or pseudo macro etc. it's actually quite good, everything but edge sharpness in the long end. If you carry a 60-250 as well, that becomes irrelevant as the DA*60-250 is excellent centre and edge throughout it's entire range.

So where does the 16-85 excel? When you are in urban (or closed in) environments and wider is more important than longer and you are only taking one lens. The 18-135 is a much better all purpose walk around. It covers a much wider zoom range, more flexible, and fewer lens changes when it's on the camera.

The top lw/ph measured on the 18-135 are 2683 at 24mm ƒ5.6 and 2649 kw.ph, at 18mm ƒ5.6
The top lw/ph measured on the 16-85 is 2621 at 24mm ƒ4 and 2612 at 24mm ƒ5.6

Best to best, the 18-135 is better, make whatever arguments you want to make your claim but, that doesn't change the fact, someone else could argue the opposite just as effectively. Any advantage to the 18-135 can be made up for by taking the 15 ltd. The disadvantage of the 85 can be made up for by taking the 100 macro and the 1.4 TC. It all depends on what you value and what you can do without.

I have so little respect for the folks who bad mouth this lens, I hope it doesn't come through too much. I always feel like saying. if you want to promote your lens fine, if you have to put down mine, that's not acceptable. Especially if you just repeat the nonsense posted by reviewers who don't use the lens every second day.

The 16-85 is1:5.3. The 18-135 1:7.5. They are designed using different design philosophies the 18-135 in the long end being excellent centre sharp but not caring much about the edges in the long end, the 16-85 being better edge to edge throughout it's entire range except of course at 24mm where the 18-135 just surpasses it, and that's it's best focal length.

So what do you want? 1:5.3 better in a few areas but not in absolute sharpness, or 1:7.5 centers sharp every where excellent at 24mm. The 16-85 gives you better average overall sharpness at the expense of flexibility, and absolute sharpness. It's your choice, but it shouldn't be based on one being significantly better than the other. It's actually a predictable trade off. The OP has to choose which set of trade offs suits him. Personally I've never considered changing. Part of that is owning the DA*60-250. That lens is so much better than either of them, in the OPs position I'd just keep the 18-50 and get a 60 -250. After all, if the 16-85 is only bit more than the 18-135, the 60-250 is only a bit more than the 16-85 by that logic. Now there is an awesome lens. 1:3 zoom, constant ƒ4, excellent throughout it's range which nicely complements the 18-50. Lets get real. You'll take either of them off the camera to use the 60-250, at least I would,

http://www.opticallimits.com/pentax/479-pentax_60250_4?start=1

Last edited by normhead; 02-25-2018 at 08:05 PM.
02-25-2018, 05:29 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by clackers Quote
It's smaller and lighter, Dean, isn't it? People have been known to swap brands for that reason.
This is no doubt the smallest, lightest-carrying general-purpose zoom lens for an APS-C DSLR on the market. I do own both. Yes, the DA 18-135mm is a great versatile zoom lens with a substantial zoom range. Very quiet, accurate and fast AF. I had already owned this very useful lens for quite some time when I decided to replace my old K-r with the K-S2 as my most compact body, and the little DA-L 18-50mm was offered with it as a kit at a great price I couldn't refuse. Now I'm glad I spent that under $50 to get this little lens that "I didn't need". Mounted upon the very compact K-S2, it is a zoom ensemble I can actually fit into a sizable jacket pocket! Imagine that- a very capable APS-C DSLR AND a zoom lens of 18-50mm in my pocket! (about 28-75mm on 35mm film or a FF DSLR) And having WR to boot! I was also surprised at how well the quiet AF performs, and the very good general imaging performance of this petite lens as well. Much better than the old 18-55mm WR kit lens, and it cost me less!

So now, if I need the expanded versatility, I usually take the DA 18-135mm. If needing as small and light as possible zoom lens on my small and light but very capable KS2, I most happily take the DA-L 18-50mm! It will also fit into a "fanny-pack" type belt case of the right size, which is great for social events and other circumstances where having a barely noticeable kit is desirable.

Last edited by mikesbike; 02-25-2018 at 05:39 PM.
02-25-2018, 05:53 PM   #11
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I've not owned the 18-50 RE WR so take this with a grain of salt. Sample images and what I'v read about the lens makes me think it has two advantages over the 18-135; it's quite small, even when compared to a pretty compact (for what it offers) lens like the 18-135. The other is that it's cheap. It needs to be; the build quality and general fit & finish of this lens is not impressive. I hate to call a lens "disposable" but this is kind of up there. I don't think it performs that well unless it's stopped well down. I think I'd rather have a DA 18-55 WR over the -50 RE.

My two cents, worth about as much.

p.s. I agree with Norm again like usual.
02-25-2018, 06:04 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentageek Quote
Have you considered 16-85? It's more expensive, but significantly outperforms 18-135 in terms of IQ.
+1 for this /\
P.S.I disagree with Norm,like usual!

Last edited by timb64; 02-25-2018 at 06:11 PM.
02-25-2018, 08:08 PM - 1 Like   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by pres589 Quote

p.s. I agree with Norm again like usual.
QuoteOriginally posted by timb64 Quote
+1 for this /\
P.S.I disagree with Norm,like usual!
I agree with pres589 and disagree with timb64 as usual

Exactly how many times have we had this conversation? I'm saving my post, so i don't have to thinks so hard next time.
02-25-2018, 11:23 PM   #14
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Dakight, Interestingly, no edit box shows up on my posts.

For the rest of you, thanks for all the great thoughts and opinions. I had searched the subject before I posted and was not aware it had been discussed many times before as the discussions did not show up in the search. My apologies for rehashing old ground but I really do appreciate those that took the time to provide their input. Normheads info on the 60-250 was a great counter point to sticking with the 18-50 and not going to the 18-135 but at $1100 for a used 50-250 I think I may wait on that a while. It will still make a great combo with the 18-135.

It is clear that there are many on here that believe more lenses and gear the better. Personally, where we travel, the less kit you need to pack the better off you are. If you can figure out how to get one tool to do 4 jobs, that is far better than 4 separate tools. From the info presented it seems pretty clear the 18-135 fits well wit the desire to have one tool do more than one job. I will take your advice and get a cheap used 18-135 and sell the 18-50 or if I can get the dealer to do it cheap enough, I will swap with him. Thanks again.

---------- Post added 02-25-18 at 11:31 PM ----------

Dakight, Interestingly, no edit box shows up on my posts but by clicking on "Go advanced" I can access the post and edit it..

For the rest of you, thanks for all the great thoughts and opinions. I had searched the subject before I posted and was not aware it had been discussed many times before as the discussions did not show up in the search. My apologies for rehashing old ground but I really do appreciate those that took the time to provide their input. Normheads info on the 60-250 was a great counter point to sticking with the 18-50 and not going to the 18-135 but at $1100 for a used 60-250 I think I may wait on that a while. It will still make a great combo with the 18-135 later on.

It is clear that there are many on here that believe more lenses and gear the better. Personally, where we travel, the less kit you need to pack the better off you are. If you can figure out how to get one tool to do 4 jobs, that is far better than 4 separate tools. From the info presented it seems pretty clear the 18-135 fits well wit the desire to have one tool do more than one job and takes very good pictures across it full range. I will take your advice and get a cheap used 18-135 and sell the 18-50 or if I can get the dealer to do it cheap enough, I will swap with him. Thanks again.
02-26-2018, 07:23 AM   #15
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I don't believe 'the more the better' when it comes to the number of lenses I own. My travel kit in the past has been a DA 18-135 and a DA 15. I think it best to have a few lenses that I'm really good at using and have a clear purpose for (one of which is "excellent all-around zoom"). A trip I'm planning for sometime next year Is probably going to be the 18-135 and a Samyang 14mm f2.8 for low light / astro shooting.

The DA 18-135 isn't so great for two things, in my experience; it's not a light grabbing f2.8 or faster lens, and somewhat relatedly it's not great for portrait work. Again, in my experience. The DA 40XS or DA 50 1.8 can be added to a kit to handle those tasks for not a lot of money, weight, or space.
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