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08-09-2019, 08:40 PM   #1
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Lenses for London

In October I'll be going to London, staying there for about 5 days, taking the train to Paris on one of the days. I plan to go very light, KP and maybe two lenses, possibly three if small enough. I'll use my ThinkTank Turnstyle 5 small sling, which I have not yet reconfigured for the KP. It is currently configured for the smaller Sony a6000. (Edit changed Turnstyle 10 to Turnstyle 5)

My current lenses are listed in the signature below. The current lenses I'm considering are the DA 15, DA 18-135, or F 50. I'm also considering acquiring a DA 21 or DA 20-40. I have wanted a DA 21 for some time, but the DA 20-40 may be a better option being a WR lens and a bit faster. Also thinking the 20-40 is faster and has better IQ than the 18-135, but of course a much more limited range, budget wise it would be at the top. Of course there may be totally better options.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.


Last edited by ramseybuckeye; 08-11-2019 at 05:32 PM.
08-09-2019, 11:02 PM   #2
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From what you already own, I'd suggest the Sigma 17-50mm for the fast constant aperture (good for low-light shots), and the 55-300mm PLM for the long distance shots (as long as you dont need the constant aperture), both lenses should give you a good covered range to shoot with.
08-09-2019, 11:05 PM   #3
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you might want to consider the option of renting equipment for the trip

Information on Businesses that offer cameras and lenses for rent - PentaxForums.com

I rented the 20-40 limited from LensRentals.com and took it with me to Tanzania

I would suggest you purchase the maximum protection package they offer.
08-10-2019, 12:07 AM   #4
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What's your list of places to visit/subjects to shoot? London's hugely diverse photographically, as is Paris.

08-10-2019, 12:52 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by JohnX Quote
What's your list of places to visit/subjects to shoot? London's hugely diverse photographically, as is Paris.
Agree, I've never quite understood these questions. To me it sounds like "I'm going outside, what lenses should I use?". Whatever you bring with you, you'll always leave the one lens you at some point desperately need at home. On the other hand, bringing everything almost guarantees you won't leave the hotel for fear of either breaking your back or having your hotel room ransacked. I'd almost quote 1949 Danny Kaye's Inspector General: "Be elegant, be arrogant, be smart!"
08-10-2019, 03:33 AM   #6
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Last time I was in Paris, I took 2 primes to save space:

Primes in Paris - PentaxForums.com

The DA15mm is a must. I would suggest a fast 50 as second prime.

My 5 cents.
08-10-2019, 04:06 AM   #7
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Reading your gear list, and if you want to keep it light and compact, I would go DA15 (wide/ultra-wide), DA35 (standard), and DA55-300 (telephoto). Doesn't break your back, gives you loads of options, and impeccable IQ (focus on primes). I nearly always pack my DA50, too, since it weighs next to nothing and gives me a fast, brilliant short telephoto.

But, as newmikey has so eloquently suggested, ultimately only you can decide what works for your personal shooting style.

Of course, a DA21 wouldn't hurt, and if you can use your trip as a pretext for acquiring it, well, ...

I have also used my DA10-17 Fisheye to some effect on my London trips. Below are some shots from my most recent one.


















Last edited by Madaboutpix; 12-28-2019 at 04:52 AM. Reason: Embedded links
08-10-2019, 05:15 AM - 1 Like   #8
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DA15 and DA18-135 will do for just about everything.

BUT

DA10-17



DA55-300



08-10-2019, 05:32 AM   #9
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I’d recommend the 18-135, 55-300 and the f50. Primes are nice but versatility is most important.
08-10-2019, 06:18 AM   #10
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London's has some nice wide open spaces and vistas, and not just along the river, so the 18-135 would be a good choice for telephoto as well as general walk around lens to make the most out those opportunities as well as more closed in street scenes. I really like my 20-40 and can't recommend it enough (I stitch in post if I really need a wider view). A fast prime is a nice to have, but I get more use out of my 10-17 fisheye because it's just such a fun lens, and you can always de-fish it if you want an ultra wide view.
08-10-2019, 07:14 AM - 1 Like   #11
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When travelling I usually bring zooms, but when visiting cities only I tend to stick to a few (wide-ish) primes and a GR. Of the lenses you list there's only one I know I wouldn't go without - the DA15.

I agree with the guys mentioning the 10-17 as it is a hugely fun lens to use. With some practice it can produce some wonderful images, as demonstrated by Marc and Sandy above.

Not from London, but this is one of my better attempts with the 10-17, I think.


And one with the DA15, although I'm sure you already know what it's capable of
08-11-2019, 03:30 PM   #12
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Cities (and especially London) cry out for wide-angles, tall buildings & narrow streets packed with people mean the closer you can get to your subject the better, I'd see no need for the 55-300. For me the DA15 or Tamron 10-24 is a given (I know nothing about the Tamron and I'm curious as to why you haven't mentioned it), the F50/1.7 gives you a good, fast mid-tele option, I'd consider the F35-70 (it really is small) or perhaps an M135/3.5 if you need a compact longer option.

If I was doing this with the lenses I have on my K-5: DA10-17FE & DA17-70/4 (I have no wider lenses), FA28/2.8 (my 'standard' on APS-C) & FA50/1.4. If I had a DA15 & DA20-40 I'd take those instead of the DA17-70. I prefer not to carry bulky 'walkround' zooms if I can help it, the DA17-70 is my limit and only because I have no wider lenses.

Last time I went to London I had my P67 with me, I took two lenses: 45mm (approx. equivalent to a DA15 on APS-C) and 165mm (approx. equivalent to a 50mm on APS-C), the two gave me a good spread that covered most of my needs.
08-11-2019, 06:08 PM   #13
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Original Poster
Thanks to all of you for the replies to date, a lot of good suggestions!

QuoteOriginally posted by disconnekt Quote
From what you already own, I'd suggest the Sigma 17-50mm for the fast constant aperture (good for low-light shots), and the 55-300mm PLM for the long distance shots (as long as you dont need the constant aperture), both lenses should give you a good covered range to shoot with.
The Sigma would be a good option for low light, I just wish it were weather sealed. The two of those may be more "bulk" or size than I want to take. The versatility and quality of the PLM is unmatched in my lens collection, but I'm not convinced yet that it will be useful on this trip, but honestly I'll have a hard time not taking it. It may come down to the fit test. I edited my initial post to change the sling bag to the Turnstyle 5, which is smaller than the 10 that I usually use with the KP. I'm afraid if I use the 10 I will take too much gear.

QuoteOriginally posted by aslyfox Quote
you might want to consider the option of renting equipment for the trip

Information on Businesses that offer cameras and lenses for rent - PentaxForums.com

I rented the 20-40 limited from LensRentals.com and took it with me to Tanzania

I would suggest you purchase the maximum protection package they offer.
That is a good suggestion, even if I'm looking for an excuse to buy the 20-40. If I do I will definitely get the insurance. I also want the 21 so I may have to start a thread to see if it's worth having both.

QuoteOriginally posted by JohnX Quote
What's your list of places to visit/subjects to shoot? London's hugely diverse photographically, as is Paris.
Some of the places on the plan are the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, St Pauls, Royal Observatory, Emirates Stadium (just the tour - international break), Abbey Road, Buckingham Palace, Windsor, a river cruise, and various museums and walks. The weather in October will dictate what we do day to day. We will be staying pretty close to Hyde Park.

QuoteOriginally posted by newmikey Quote
Agree, I've never quite understood these questions. To me it sounds like "I'm going outside, what lenses should I use?". Whatever you bring with you, you'll always leave the one lens you at some point desperately need at home. On the other hand, bringing everything almost guarantees you won't leave the hotel for fear of either breaking your back or having your hotel room ransacked.
Of course it's totally my choice, but it doesn't hurt to ask others who may have been there and have experience to share. I always enjoy these threads because you can gain a little knowledge from other Pentaxians that love to share, kind of what this forum is known for.

QuoteOriginally posted by johnha Quote
Cities (and especially London) cry out for wide-angles, tall buildings & narrow streets packed with people mean the closer you can get to your subject the better, I'd see no need for the 55-300. For me the DA15 or Tamron 10-24 is a given (I know nothing about the Tamron and I'm curious as to why you haven't mentioned it), the F50/1.7 gives you a good, fast mid-tele option, I'd consider the F35-70 (it really is small) or perhaps an M135/3.5 if you need a compact longer option.

If I was doing this with the lenses I have on my K-5: DA10-17FE & DA17-70/4 (I have no wider lenses), FA28/2.8 (my 'standard' on APS-C) & FA50/1.4. If I had a DA15 & DA20-40 I'd take those instead of the DA17-70. I prefer not to carry bulky 'walkround' zooms if I can help it, the DA17-70 is my limit and only because I have no wider lenses.
Wide angle is what my initial thoughts were. Many here have suggested the 15 and I'm pretty sure it will go. The Tamron 10-24 is under consideration but I probably won't take it because it takes a lot of space. It uses a 77mm filter and the hood width extends quite a bit more, it's actually a little larger than the 55-300 PLM, but the hood is quite a bit wider. My son has taken the Tamron to Europe a few times and he may take it this time. The F35-70 is a good consideration too, because of it's small size, but the WR of the 18-135 will probably win out there.
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