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12-07-2008, 09:31 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ole Quote
My most used lens has become the Pentax-FA* 28-70/2.8. The IQ is just incredible. It is frequently available second hand on ebay from a reputable seller in Japan. The 28-70 is a good supplement to the 12-24.

eBay Store - Matsuiyastore: Pentax: smc PENTAX A 50mm f 1.2 Brand new, Pentax SMCP-FA 50mm f 1.4 Lens

Naturally, they don't have one right now...
Hi Ole, there is a 28-78/2.8 available locally and I have been interested in this lens. I have been researching about his lens and I found a Popphoto review here: Popular Photography Tests
Do you agree that the 28-70/2.8 is as weak wide open at 50-70mm as this test suggests? Thanks for you input. Sorry for the OT.

12-07-2008, 09:41 PM   #17
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Hi Ned, welcome to the forum!

Good work generating this much interest on your first post. You've listed some good lenses there, and I'm sure you'll be happy with any of 'em. I just got a *16-50, and I pretty stoked on it, but I had to sell my k200d body (got the k20d recently), and a bunch of lenses to afford it. The 17-70s sound interesting for a walk around lens, and out of the two I'd go for the Pentax, but I'm just learning I prefer Pentax glass to Sigma (when I can get it - don't think I'll be replacing the bigma soon).

Since you have the 12-24, you could also consider a zoom starting at 24mm or 28mm, and one which springs to mind quickly is the Sigma 24-60mm EX DC, as you can get brand new ones for about $200. I had one, and found it very good, but I missed the wider range of a lens that dips into the teens and got myself the 16-50 .
12-07-2008, 09:46 PM   #18
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I'm curious why many of you are pushing him in the direction of a 24/28ish-70ish zoom. Sure, these are all very good pieces of glass you are recommending but its really about what range he would find more useful.

In my case, I've been using a sigma 24-60 for the past few months and while it does indeed produce some terrific images, I feel that the range isn't as ideal. For myself, it would be MUCH more useful to have a much wider angle on my wide angle- normal lens rather than more telephoto. If this is something that will always be on your camera keep in mind that you can always get closer to something or crop, but there's many situations where you have no ability to get farther away. I know that an extreme wide would help complement this, but I'd rather have a lens that would compromise between both of those functions. That is why I am going to be selling my 24-60 for a DA* 16-50. Again, this is just me and I know that the OP may differ with me in preferences. The point is though, that the emphasis shouldn't lie on what glass is the best optically or has the best value, but what would be the most useful for what you are shooting.

You also need to consider the extra features of the 16-50, which really sold me on the lens. The weather sealing There has been so many days with rain where I would have loved to go outside and shoot, but my equipment was limiting me from doing so. The 16-50 would allow me to shoot in entirely new environments, which for me is very important. Also, I feel like the value of SDM isn't often addressed in regards to this lens. I often photograph candids in an urban setting and the whirring of an in camera motor can undesirably attract the attention of your subject. When your goal is to be as unobtrusive as possible, silencing your camera would really go a long way in being able to take pictures without others noticing as much. In fact, most of the time I take these shots I just rely entirely on MF, so it would be great to have AF as an option.

To again state my point here, I'm not telling you that you should buy a 16-50 but rather determine which would aid you the most in your particular style of photography. Honestly, all the f2.8/4 zooms will provide you with great results if you can shoot and the differences will rarely matter as much as we make it seem here.
12-07-2008, 09:58 PM   #19
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I second this comment

QuoteQuote:
I have the DA* 16-50 f/2.8 and I find it to be my most used lens

Love this lens... hardly comes of my camera


Neil

12-07-2008, 10:11 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by touchmyichi Quote
I'm curious why many of you are pushing him in the direction of a 24/28ish-70ish zoom. Sure, these are all very good pieces of glass you are recommending but its really about what range he would find more useful.

In my case, I've been using a sigma 24-60 for the past few months and while it does indeed produce some terrific images, I feel that the range isn't as ideal. For myself, it would be MUCH more useful to have a much wider angle on my wide angle- normal lens rather than more telephoto. If this is something that will always be on your camera keep in mind that you can always get closer to something or crop, but there's many situations where you have no ability to get farther away. I know that an extreme wide would help complement this, but I'd rather have a lens that would compromise between both of those functions. That is why I am going to be selling my 24-60 for a DA* 16-50. Again, this is just me and I know that the OP may differ with me in preferences. The point is though, that the emphasis shouldn't lie on what glass is the best optically or has the best value, but what would be the most useful for what you are shooting.

You also need to consider the extra features of the 16-50, which really sold me on the lens. The weather sealing There has been so many days with rain where I would have loved to go outside and shoot, but my equipment was limiting me from doing so. The 16-50 would allow me to shoot in entirely new environments, which for me is very important. Also, I feel like the value of SDM isn't often addressed in regards to this lens. I often photograph candids in an urban setting and the whirring of an in camera motor can undesirably attract the attention of your subject. When your goal is to be as unobtrusive as possible, silencing your camera would really go a long way in being able to take pictures without others noticing as much. In fact, most of the time I take these shots I just rely entirely on MF, so it would be great to have AF as an option.

To again state my point here, I'm not telling you that you should buy a 16-50 but rather determine which would aid you the most in your particular style of photography. Honestly, all the f2.8/4 zooms will provide you with great results if you can shoot and the differences will rarely matter as much as we make it seem here.
Well, since I'm one of those who advocated something starting at 24mm, let me address you're comment...

I wholeheartedly agree! 100%!... I just did that same thing, sold the 24-60mm, and got a DA* 16-50... But since the OP already has a 12-24mm, he might be fine combining that with some other lens to give him more reach and/or save money instead of springing for the * lens right now. Just another option since there's so much overlap with 12-24mm if he got the 16-50.
12-08-2008, 12:05 AM   #21
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As a kind of wildcard entry, howabout the Tamron 17-50 f2.8?

I just purchased this lens to replace my Sigma DC 17-70. I did the whole research thing and it pretty much came out on top for me (unless I had almost double the money, in which case the Pentax 16-50 may have won out - SDM rocks). For me, a wide aperture was very important, as is IQ.

Of course seeing as you have a 12-24 you may find more use from something in the 20ish-60ish or 30ish to 70ish range. That is the first question to consider I think.

If you want something in the 16ish to 50ish range then I would highly recommend the Tamron. The colours are amazing and it is very sharp, even wide open. I shot a wedding on the weekend and was very happy with the results (plus my new Sigma 70-200 did really well too ;]).

Let me know if anyone wants to see sample pics.
12-08-2008, 12:08 AM   #22
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Oh one more thing, you listed the Sigma as f2.8. In fact, the Sigma DC 17-70 is f2.8-f4.5 (meaning wider angle gives wider aperture). This was a real bummer for me as it makes things more difficult than they should be when zooming in high pressure situations.

Constant 2.8 all the way I reckon
12-08-2008, 11:13 AM   #23
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Thanks for all the great feedback

Greetings from chilly Pennsylvania.

Thanks to everyone who provided his/her opinions and other thoughtful responses to my original post. This is a great forum! I did use the search function and read a lot here before posting, but didn't find any threads directly comparing the three different zooms I listed.

Based on what I've read so far, the DA* 16-50mm seems to be a very popular lens and is the best pick if you eliminate the risk of getting a bad one. I'm going to take a chance and buy one of them.

Next lens will be a fixed length, maybe the DA 14MM F2.8, realizing that such focal length is covered by my 12-24mm zoom. To clarify, I have the Sigma 12-24, not the Pentax DA lens. It was the only one available when I bought my *ist DS a few years ago. If both were available then, I probably would have opted for the Pentax on general principle, unless reviews of the Sigma had shown better IQ (which is not the case).

Just to have the option, I'd also like to get a longer zoom, like the DA* 50-135mm, DA* 60-250mm, DA 50-200mm or DA 55-300mm, although I fear any such lens will spend most of its time in the case.

I realize I could "kill two birds with one stone" by opting for the DA 18-250mm, but since I shoot mostly extreme wide angles, I don't want to compromise on the wide end just to get an extra long lens. Make sense, or is the 18-250mm worth considering?

People refer to the 18-250mm as a good travel lens, but I like to travel light (usually on a motorcycle) and will use a Lumix LX-3 for that.


Last edited by Neducati; 12-08-2008 at 11:19 AM.
12-08-2008, 12:20 PM   #24
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My feelings on the DA 18-250 I had are that the short end produced decent pictures while the long end was muddy and low in contrast... Since you don't need the short end and don't want a 1 lens solution for travel, I'd steer you away from it.

My feeling on the long zoom debate is that the 50-135 doesn't compare to any offerings which reach 200 or further, but that's because I like telephoto, so for me 200mm is a minimum long end. Don't get me wrong, I covet the 50-135, but more for portraits/events rather than as an outdoor general tele-zoom. In that category, I'd compare the *60-250, and the Tamron and Sigma 70-200/2.8s and the Sigma 100-300/4. I have the Tamron 70-200/2.8 and consider it equivalent to a * lens (without SDM or wx. sealing unfortunately).

OTOH, if the long one will just hang out in your bag, you might want to get a used cheaper model for $100-150 out of the marketplace here, and play with it enough to decide if it's worth investing in top level glass in this category. You could always sell it for what you paid for it when you're ready to commit to a nicer lens, and you'll get a feel for the focal lengths you use (maybe you only need a 50-135 ).
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