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09-02-2019, 01:53 PM - 1 Like   #16
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I would stand in the pop up top vehicle and use a cushion/bean bag for support and the last time I went I added this:


moman mini tripod

moman mini tripod reviews - Pentax Camera Accessory Review Database

Moman Mini Tripod - Greatest $30 Purchase in Last 5 Years! - Page 4 - PentaxForums.com

to set on the bean bag and help spread the weight and better handle the 150-450

it worked very well

09-02-2019, 02:34 PM   #17
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Well, the Bigma is certainly a beast, but a good beast. Most experts say some dust within will not affect performance. The DFA 150-450mm is also a beast, but an even better beast for performance- yet not for having the additional zoom range convenience, and you already have and know the Bigma. As to a 300mm f/4 lens, why not acquire a 1.4 or 1.5 TC that matches well with your Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 lens? That would save a lot of weight. Then all you need is the short end of the range.

I understand why you take your slow Sigma 18-250mm lens- to serve mainly in its shorter range where its quality is best, then turn to the Sigma 70-200mm. It is not very large or heavy. However, the real purpose served well by such a lens is for social events such as lawn parties, graduations, etc. where you can use it to zoom back and forth to get good grab shots from your location. The upper end of image quality is not an issue. A perfect tool.

A better choice for your purpose here, as I see it, would be the DA 18-135mm DC WR lens. AF is fast, quiet and accurate. It can hold to f/3.5-4.5 out to 70mm with very good to excellent quality. Edge performance diminishes as it is zoomed to its longer tele range, but central sharpness remains exceptional. And it is remarkably compact but very well built. It is a favorite among my arsenal. Then you'd at least have one good all-around lens with WR.

Another recommendation would be the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC lens, which can be had at a remarkably low price. I bought mine last year from B&H and love it. This would be an excellent coupling with your Sigma 70-200mm especially for low light and/or action situations.

So my vision of your kit would be- your very versatile but beastly Bigma when you'd need more reach. And the DA 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 for lighter use when you need less reach, combined with your Sigma 70-200mm, possibly with the TC on or kept handy. And the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 for use instead of the DA 18-135mm for low light or action scenes. This is a 4-lens kit plus TC, with excellent range, versatility in shooting, and fine quality.

You could skip the DA 18-135mm and just go with the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8, a very fine lens, but you'd be changing lenses more often, and have no WR lens. Having both, I can testify to the advantages of having both. Neither are large lenses in terms of carrying along.

As you are considering, you could indeed rent the DFA 150-450 for its fine quality and having WR, but the comparative downside is you'd not have the Bigma's ability to instantly zoom to a shorter FL if the need should quickly arise, and its reach is not quite as long. Your call. With your past experience, your judgment is better than mine between the two!

Last edited by mikesbike; 09-02-2019 at 02:39 PM.
09-02-2019, 02:51 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mary Lippold Quote
. . . The other reason, is that I have started seeing some dust inside my 50-500; inside the front of the lens. It has not yet affected my photos, but it is there and in a place where I can't get at it to clean it. I understand that happens no matter how much you try to protect your lenses while driving around in the dirt. . . . .
dust in your lens

perhaps this blog entry might help your fears:

QuoteQuote:
Apocalypse (from the Greek apokálypsis; “lifting of the veil” or “revelation”):

An event involving destruction or damage on an awesome or catastrophic scale.

A disclosure of something hidden from the majority of mankind.

How appropriate the word apocalypse is for this little article. At least once a week I see a post somewhere from a fairly inexperienced photographer who thinks a definition 1 apocalypse has occurred: “OMG, my lens has dust inside!!!! How did it get there??? What will I do?? My shoot is ruiiinned!!!!!”

Pretty soon a more experienced photographer posts a definition 2 apocalypse to try to calm the first photographer down: “Lens dust is insignificant, you can never see it, it has no effect on your pictures.”

Well, the second post is far more realistic than the first. Every lens has dust inside and you can almost never see it in a picture (99% of the time you can’t). But obviously there must be some point where dust is either big enough or there’s just enough of it to become visible, otherwise we could fill our lenses with mud and then go take pictures. . . .

So what did we learn today?

The biggest surprise I got (it shouldn’t have been, I just didn’t think about it) was putting a fairly large foreign object on a rear element may keep the camera from autofocusing.
Does it have real world implications? I don’t think so, although perhaps heavy rear element dust could interfere with autofocus accuracy.

Individual dust particles have to be HUGE before they can show up under almost any conditions. By HUGE I mean bigger than dust. Think an insect part or a small screw (I’ve seen both of those in lenses. It happens.)

Even something large probably won’t show up at wide apertures (f4 or wider probably).

A wide angle lens shows front element objects more than a moderate telephoto.

The moderate telephoto showed rear element objects more dramatically.

Remember, though, that what we really did here was look at big objects on the front and rear element of the lens. Internal dust might behave a bit differently if it was near the focal plane of the lens internally, or perhaps just in front of or behind the aperture. I’m not so curious that I’m going to take a lens apart and put a sticky note on an internal element and reassemble it to take test shots. Not yet anyway. Maybe in the winter when things are slow.

Does any of this have any real world implications? Nah. Unless you get a bug inside your lens there’s not much need to worry about dust. Until there’s so much dust that it interferes with contrast or light transmission. When is that? Well sounds like another article coming up, doesn’t it? But it would be a lot of dust
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09-02-2019, 03:14 PM   #19
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I will retract suggesting the hd da 1.4x assuning you'll have to change it on/off in dusty environmental conditions.

09-02-2019, 04:14 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mary Lippold Quote
. So, I'm looking for the best replacement for either longer range zoom or a prime lens to complement the 18-250 and 70-200. And remembering this is a crop sensor camera, I remind myself that the actual reach of the lenses is x1.5 the mm of the lens.
I think the Pentax 70mm f2.4 prime Limited lens would be a nice compliment for portraits or a mid-tele lens for your trip Its quality build, relatively fast open aperture and relatively small size allows you to take it along. I use it often my my K-3ii and it never disappoints.

Enjoy your trip !!
09-03-2019, 02:45 AM   #21
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If you need to take pics in the dark (like while driving out from camp, or at the camp fire) then AF is not accurate. Go MF. I ended up with my A50/1.7 wide open in those situations in Kenya.

Seb

Last edited by bassek; 09-03-2019 at 02:57 AM.
09-03-2019, 07:59 AM   #22
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You might want to keep your eyes on the market place and should you find a SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro, SMC Pentax-FA 100mm F2.8 Macro or SMC Pentax-F 100mm F2.8 Macro
for a good price

consider getting an excellent macro and short telephoto lens which shares the same optics ( different shape of aperture blades ) as the newer SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro WR
09-03-2019, 01:12 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by aslyfox Quote
I agree with this recommendation with one exception

consider the DA 20-40mm limited, instead of the DA 21 limited and the DA 35 Limited
While I love my DA 20-40 the purpose for recommending the DA 35 Ltd was macro which it doesn't address - and speed. At 35mm the 20-40 is closer to f4 than 2.8. For everyday carry I like the 20-40 and the 50-135 pair but that wouldn't make sense on Safari I suspect. The 20-40 is just too limited. The 16-85 or 18-135 on one body and the 150-450 or 55-300 on the other is sensible.

Another option might be a fast shorter zoom like the 17-50 or 16-50 variants at f2.8 constant and the 1.4x (I'm flip flopping) stuck on the 70-200 f/2.8 - the difference in this case being that you wouldn't swap the 1.4x on and off - you'd leave it on while outside. The 70-200 then becomes 98 - 280 f/4 essentially a 100-300 f/4 - which is quite useful.

09-03-2019, 01:21 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
While I love my DA 20-40 the purpose for recommending the DA 35 Ltd was macro which it doesn't address - and speed. At 35mm the 20-40 is closer to f4 than 2.8. . . . .
my thought about using the 20-40mm limited zoom was in consideration of changing the 20mm limited and the 35mm limited in an area where there was dirt/dust issues

________________________-

as far as macro goes, I recommend a longer focal length than 35mm or 50mm for macro in the field

I use the D FA 100mm F2.8 and the bonus is that it is a very sharp medium telephoto as well

I do admit that I am a very amateur macro photographer
09-03-2019, 02:10 PM - 1 Like   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by aslyfox Quote
my thought about using the 20-40mm limited zoom was in consideration of changing the 20mm limited and the 35mm limited in an area where there was dirt/dust issues

________________________-

as far as macro goes, I recommend a longer focal length than 35mm or 50mm for macro in the field

I use the D FA 100mm F2.8 and the bonus is that it is a very sharp medium telephoto as well

I do admit that I am a very amateur macro photographer
Well, I think I've hit the jackpot for all the good advice and the reasons behind your suggestions. I'm very grateful. Now I will digest all this, maybe consider buying another lens and renting a couple to play with before our trip. I'm also grateful for the reminder that the dust particles I see inside my lens are not likely to show up in photos. I had heard that before, but had forgotten. I knew it hadn't affected my pix so far, but for some reason started worrying that if it built up more dust then it might be a bad thing for this next trip.
Since we're not going until summer 2020, I now have great advice and plenty of time to play with lenses. And I will look at the moman mini tripod. The initial look at the page describing it seems very interesting. It might have to get purchased to fill out my kit. Now, let's see......how much money can I spend on new/used lenses? Hmmmmm. Thanks again everyone.
09-03-2019, 04:08 PM   #26
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One other thing to consider Mary, is that there has been a number of recent reports out of South Africa about camera gear theft. If you do rent, it would be good to see how you stand with insurance. And, if goes without saying - do not let your camera bag out of your sight if you're in a public place. In fact, use a bag that does not look like a typical camera bag if you go walkabout.
09-03-2019, 04:18 PM   #27
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good point to check when one rents equipment

but at least one US company does sell an optional " insurance " program that does cover if the equipment is lost from theft:
QuoteQuote:
When purchased, the Lenscap+ plan limits Lessee’s liability in the case of damage or loss on covered equipment.

On equipment covered by the optional Lenscap+ plan, Lessee’s maximum liability of damage is the lesser of 10% of the replacement cost of the equipment.
Liability for unreturned equipment is only limited when it is impossible for the Lessee to return the equipment to Lessor due to one of the following conditions:


Theft;
Fire;
Lightning;
Windstorm;
Earth Movement;
Flood, including dropped into a body of water;
Breakage;
Dropped from or fell off aircraft.
Lessee must provide any documentation required by Lessor to substantiate the circumstances causing the Lessee’s inability to return the equipment to Lessor.
LensRentals.com - Rent Lenses and Cameras from Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Sony, Leica, and more

also, Lensrental.com does allow its equipment to be taken out of the country
09-03-2019, 04:55 PM - 1 Like   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by bassek Quote
If you need to take pics in the dark (like while driving out from camp, or at the camp fire) then AF is not accurate. Go MF. I ended up with my A50/1.7 wide open in those situations in Kenya.

Seb
The very fine Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 EX DC has a very handy AF/MF switch, as good or better than Quick-shift. It delivers very good results even wide open, and even yet better at edges with just a little stop-down to f/3.2 or so. A very useful lens, and a bargain to boot.

Unlike the DA* 50-135mm f/2.8 It is apparently not a fully internal-focus design, so although the filter end does not rotate upon focus, the focus collar does rotate in both MF and AF. So you must be mindful of keeping your fingers out of the way during AF. This is not really inconvenient, as this is not a tiny lens like the screw-driven limiteds, so once mindful it is still easy to hold. An advantage could be not having the "focus-breathing" factor, so there'd be no reduction in effective focal length for portraits or closeups. And, its close focusing capabilities are exceptional, even for wide angle!

---------- Post added 09-03-19 at 04:57 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
The 20-40 is just too limited.

Excellent pun, UncleVanya!

Last edited by mikesbike; 09-03-2019 at 05:05 PM.
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