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02-14-2009, 12:56 AM   #1
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Don't want to spend too much

So I'm wondering what would be a better combination for my *ist DS.

Either:

Pentax 18-55mm ($50) + 50-200mm ($125)

Or:

Sigma 18-125mm ($170)

Or:

Tamron 24-135mm ($200ish?)

Not sure which ones are of better quality, or if any others could be suggested that have wide angle up to a larger zoom. I only want to spend around $200 on whatever I end up getting, and I want the best image quality as possible.

02-14-2009, 01:21 AM   #2
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I personally find the 18-24mm indispensable for landscapes, but for cityscapes a 24mm seems to be wide enough These days I find less and less use for my 50-200 since I find 135 and above hard to shoot without a tripod on indoor lighting. It's a great combo with the Raynox though. My tip is to get a used 18-55 and see if you never use the 18-24mm range and/or at times crave for longer lenghts. Then you can resell it if necessary and buy what you need.

my 2c
02-14-2009, 02:19 AM   #3
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Lol, I guess it might help to say that I'm not a noob when it comes to cameras. I know what all focal lengths are like, I've been using Canon DSLRs for a long time, but I was just wondering which lenses worked best with Pentax cameras. I also think 24 is wide enough, but I would prefer 18 just because of the wider angle it has.
02-14-2009, 05:13 AM   #4
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I only own the DA18-55 and DA50-200. They are light weight, compact, and very good for the price. Examples are available at the link in my signature.

Tim

02-14-2009, 11:56 AM   #5
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Ah, sorry. I misinterpreted your question as asking about focal length I can't speak for the other two lenses that you mentioned, but the DA18-55 and 50-200 are great for the price. Focuses quite fast and very light like the previous poster said. I think for the price you can't go wrong with those two.

Although my impression has been that the 18-250 are better than both in IQ, so you might want to consider that one too.

If you'd like to consider manual glass, take a look at the takumars and the A series zooms, although getting one sub-28mm will be hard there. One thing with manual glass is that you will almost have to invest in split screen (and maybe o-me35 / kps / nikon dkm 21) so the entry fee is not just the lens.

Last edited by Andi Lo; 02-14-2009 at 01:16 PM.
02-14-2009, 01:56 PM   #6
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I've heard nothing but bad things about the 18-125, and wasn't even aware the 24-135 existed - suggesting it isn't a very popular lens. Your best best for IQ in the $200 range is probably to try to find a good deal on the Sigma 17-70, or if that ends up stretching the budget too much, the DA 18-55 + 50-200 combo. You could of course also get better IQ by going with a more limited focal length range. The 16-45, for instance, and the Tamron 28-75/2.8 are both only "a little" more than these.
02-14-2009, 02:56 PM   #7
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I have some MF lenses on my DS, don't need a split focus screen...

Yeah, The problem is I want the full zoom range, so I'm really considering the kit lenses for now. Maybe if I ever sell my Canon gear I'll buy the 16-45.
02-14-2009, 11:09 PM   #8
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I guess the pentaprism is really much brighter than pentamirror then? I can't manage to MF properly with my K100D

02-15-2009, 02:53 AM   #9
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Yeah, it is.

Came across a deal for a Sigma 24-135 for only $100...but the Pentax 50-200 was the same price...can't decide!
02-15-2009, 04:03 AM   #10
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Gah, I've come down to this:

Pentax 18-55mm + Pentax 50-200mm = $155

Sigma 18-200mm = $155

Why must they be the same price? Makes things so much harder for me.
02-15-2009, 04:18 AM   #11
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I googled things up just because I was interested in that Sigma 18-200 lens. It has lots of quirks but looks pretty usable if you get a good copy. If you want to test your luck make sure you can return it. The fact that it's not so popular in Pentaxland is probably due the the existence of Pentax / Tamron 18-250. I'd still say go with the kit lens as they are easier to resell (at almost the same price).

The DPR thread that has multiple views on it http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1029&message=24225345&changemode=1
02-15-2009, 10:51 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Andi Lo Quote
I guess the pentaprism is really much brighter than pentamirror then? I can't manage to MF properly with my K100D
I frankly didn't notice much of a difference at all in practice between my old DS and my K200D (same viewfinder as K100D). At least, not with my manual focus lenses, which are all brighter than the kit lens to begin with. With a decently bright lens, the *size* difference is more noticeable than the *brightness* difference, and the O-ME53 magnifier attached to the K100D viewfinder solves that nicely.

But MF is a skill, and a slightly larger or slightly brighter viewfinder doesn't give you that skill magically. It takes practice, and when trying to fopcus at apertures of f/2.8 or greater, an appreciation for the fact that you;re going to end up with *less* in focus than the viewfidner shows, just because of the focus screen design. So you have to learn how to place your subejct within the zone of apparently accetable sharpness. Installing a split prism screen helps for a lot of people, but now that I am well-practiced, I don't have enough problems with my K200D to want to bother.
02-15-2009, 10:59 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by sflights Quote
Gah, I've come down to this:

Pentax 18-55mm + Pentax 50-200mm = $155

Sigma 18-200mm = $155

Why must they be the same price? Makes things so much harder for me.
Is that the 18-55 I or II? Seems surprising to me you'd get the two DA zooms for that price, even used, if you're talking about the 18-55 II. But if you've managed to find a source at that price, great! If it's not the II, I'd spring the extra for it. I wouldn't dump an existing I for a II, but if you have neither, the II is worth whatever the price difference is.

I personally prefer the two-lens approach, all else being equal, for two reasons. One, it means the lens on my camera is significantly lighter. Two, it gives me more flexibility in terms of lens selection. I can choose to take both zooms with me, or just the 18-55, or the 18-55 plus a faster/sharper telephoto prime, or a couple of wide/normal primes plus the 50-200. It also leaves open the possibility of upgrading on or the other zooms at some point (like replacing the 50-200 with a 55-300, or the 18-55 with the 16-50) without forcing me to replace both at once. But of course, it also means changing lenses, and for those who can't stand that thought, the 18-200 would I'm sure make a fine compromise (even if it by all accounts isn't quite as good in IQ as the 18-250 or the 18-55 / 50-200 pair).
02-15-2009, 04:45 PM   #14
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Well it looks like they were both sold before I could get my hands on them.

Does anyone else have any $200 lens combo suggestions?
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