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04-27-2007, 04:28 AM   #1
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One way of choosing lenses...

Hi all

After seeing a few "which lens do I get?" threads and been thru a few LBAs myself (20+ lenses), I started thinking which _essential_ lenses I would get if I was to start all over again. After drawing a few things on paper I came up with this table.



The 1st row is just six categories that classify lenses.
The 2nd row is the typical focal lengths that we find in 35mm
The 3rd row is the the focal lengths that would give you the equivalent FOV on a 1.5x crop sensor.
The 4th row is the closest existing focal lengths.
The 5th row is what I would get if I was to get just one lens in each of the six categories.

So if I have got unlimited fund and choosing only lenses that are in production, then I will get:
DA14/2.8, DA21/3.2, FA31/1.8, DA70/2.4, Sigma 105/2.8 (or DFA100/2.8), and Sigma 180/3.5

And if choosing from what I have:
Tokina 17/3.5, Missing FL, FA35/2.0, K85/1.8, M100/2.8, M200/4

What do you think? What is your way of choosing your lenses?

cheers
Kenny

04-27-2007, 04:36 AM   #2
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Original Poster
Here is another table for the zoom lenses:


cheers
Kenny
04-27-2007, 05:19 AM   #3
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I like what you've done, and I'm sure it will help some future LBA.

However, since I never used 35mm film the whole FOV talk is nonsensical to me. I don't ever sit down and think about what this 'used to look like' because to me it didn't look like anything!
I think it is a foolish marketing move by Pentax, when everyone really wants an 80-200/2.8 and they release a 50-135/2.8 saying that it is 'equivalent'. To the vast DSLR buyers out there, it isn't 'equivalent' to anything, it just is what it is. Especially since people can go out and buy an 80-200, they get used to that longer reach. Dividing by 1.5 isn't going to work.

(Just IMO, of course.)

Edit to add:
If I were building a kit to use today, it would be:
17/4 FE, 24/2, 28/3.5, 50/1.2, 85/???, 90-ish Macro, 135/2.5, and 300/2.8.

Last edited by carpents; 04-27-2007 at 05:25 AM.
04-27-2007, 06:25 AM   #4
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Hi carpents

QuoteOriginally posted by carpents Quote
I like what you've done, and I'm sure it will help some future LBA.

However, since I never used 35mm film the whole FOV talk is nonsensical to me. I don't ever sit down and think about what this 'used to look like' because to me it didn't look like anything!
I know what you mean. For example, personally I prefer 28mm as my "standard" lens even though according to the table above, 31mm should be the closest. The 35mm is a little long for me, don't know about 30 or 31 since I have never owned them. I guess what I am trying to do is to give a rough conversion table that someone might find useful when they try to decide which lens to get next.

QuoteOriginally posted by carpents Quote
I think it is a foolish marketing move by Pentax, when everyone really wants an 80-200/2.8 and they release a 50-135/2.8 saying that it is 'equivalent'. To the vast DSLR buyers out there, it isn't 'equivalent' to anything, it just is what it is. Especially since people can go out and buy an 80-200, they get used to that longer reach. Dividing by 1.5 isn't going to work.

(Just IMO, of course.)
Again I am with you here. I have been trying to find a reasonable 70-200/2.8 lens but can't. Argh!!

QuoteOriginally posted by carpents Quote
Edit to add:
If I were building a kit to use today, it would be:
17/4 FE, 24/2, 28/3.5, 50/1.2, 85/???, 90-ish Macro, 135/2.5, and 300/2.8.
Another combination that I quite like that came up while I was doing the table above is this:
14/2.8, 20/21, 28, 50, 85, 100/105 Macro, 135, 200

Apart from the two wide angles lenses and the 100/105 macro lens, I have got the rest in one form or antoher.

Thanks for commenting!

cheers
Kenny

04-27-2007, 06:47 AM   #5
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The best thing i found to help me decide what focal lengths i wanted was to get a super zoom, i know blasphemy for suggesting one, but look at it this way you buy an 18-200, and use it for a couple of months and then sit down and analyse your shots, and think about what you wanted but couldn't get and what you use a lot.

For example:

i found 18 to be to narrow, so i bought a 10-20

I was taking a lot of shots at between 40 and 60 mm, so i bought a FA 50 f1.4

I found that my technique was improving but my shots weren't getting any sharper in the 18-50 range (limited by the quality of the lens), so i bought a 16-45.

I found that i was shooting a lot at 200mm, so i bought a 50-200 (and will be buying a DA* 200 f2.8)

I found that 200mm was some times not long enough, so i will be buying a DA* 300 f4

I found that, i wanted closer focusing so i will be getting a macro lens.

I found that i wanted more low light capability at the long end, so i am getting a 50-135 f2.8

By doing this you buy the lenses you need rather then what is cool or fashionable, plus i also have a backup lens at every focal length, it may not be great but it is still better then having no lens at all.
04-27-2007, 07:58 AM   #6
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Yea the DA*50-135 is a tad short. People like the idea of a film 70-200mm because with the conversions, it brings them up to 105-300m while keeping the same aperture.

Pentax trying to save $$ I guess, like they did with the Crippled KAF-->FAJ-->DA-->DA*
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