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05-22-2007, 10:31 AM   #1
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Some Quick SLR to DSLR Lens Questions?

Hey all.

After doing some extensive research and weighting, I've decided that my first drop into the DSLR world from film would be with the Pentax K10D – this decision would keep Pentax as an exclusive in my arsenal. However, upon looking at B&H Photo, the only lens they couple the body with on the cheap is the SMCP-DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6.

Now, for as long as I've been using Pentaxes (especially my K1000), I've grown accustomed to my worn-in SMC Pentax-M 50mm f/2.0. I'm completely at a loss as to if the SMCP-DA 18-55mm would behave like my old SMC P-M.

Any insight into Pentax's confusing digital lenses / analog compatibility schema would be pretty awesome. This is my first time really delving into lenses seriously.

05-22-2007, 10:55 AM   #2
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It's confusing? Not really.

I see two things in your post that can be easily adressed:

* Buy the FA35/2 and think about it as the direct replacement for your old M50/2, just better, sharper and with higher contrast.

* Don't pass on the kit lens.

As the sensor is a bit smaller than the 24x36mm frames a 35mm lens will roughly give you the same the field of view (FOV) as the 50 used to do.

The kit lens is good for the money, it has decent close-up capabilities and it will let you try different focal lengths (FL).

This is a good start as you get a cheap way of learning new stuff, like compose with a moderate wide (the kit at 18mm gives you a the same FOV as an 28mm lens in the old money), learn the camera and so on, at the same time as you are pretty much set for anything.

Then I think you'll have to be a bit more specific with your questions - or are you asking for a crach course in everything about Pentax lenses?

good luck,
05-22-2007, 11:16 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jonas B Quote
It's confusing? Not really.

I see two things in your post that can be easily adressed:

* Buy the FA35/2 and think about it as the direct replacement for your old M50/2, just better, sharper and with higher contrast.

* Don't pass on the kit lens.

As the sensor is a bit smaller than the 24x36mm frames a 35mm lens will roughly give you the same the field of view (FOV) as the 50 used to do.

The kit lens is good for the money, it has decent close-up capabilities and it will let you try different focal lengths (FL).

This is a good start as you get a cheap way of learning new stuff, like compose with a moderate wide (the kit at 18mm gives you a the same FOV as an 28mm lens in the old money), learn the camera and so on, at the same time as you are pretty much set for anything.

Then I think you'll have to be a bit more specific with your questions - or are you asking for a crach course in everything about Pentax lenses?

good luck,
That's really great help, thanks a lot! I have a few more questions, if you'd be so kind.

* What is the FA35/2, exactly?

* What is the kit lens that you're referring to, specifically?

Excuse my noobishness.
05-22-2007, 11:44 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by msprout Quote
That's really great help, thanks a lot! I have a few more questions, if you'd be so kind.

* What is the FA35/2, exactly?

* What is the kit lens that you're referring to, specifically?

Excuse my noobishness.
The FA35/2 is a 35mm lens with automatic aperture functions (letting you use all available ways of measuring the light and all automatic modes available as well). It is known for being very good (good resolution and contrast) also wide open, has good contrast, doesn't flare easily, is somewhat hard to get by right now but can still be found at some retailers, will be replaced some time later this year by a DA35/x. All the details about the FA35 are available at Bojidar's place:
Bojidar Dimitrov's Pentax K-Mount Equipment Page
MaybeI should have linked to Bojidar's in my first reply...

The kit lens is the lens you were talking about; the SMCP DA18-55

05-22-2007, 12:08 PM   #5
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And let's not forget to mention in case you don't know, your old Manual lenses will work just fine on the K10 also. I just did a starfield shot last night of Venus with my old m50/1.7 and it came out wonderful!
05-22-2007, 01:04 PM   #6
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The bazillions of old manual lenses out there make Pentax ideal for DSLR photography on the cheap. The only problem you'll find yourself running into, if you're a prime lens lover (that is, a lover of prime lenses, not...well never mind ) is the dearth of wide angle lenses out there. The kit lens, so far as I can tell, is just about the only cheap wide angle out there for Pentax, thanks to the 1.5x crop factor (i.e., a 20mm lens on a DSLR is equivalent to a 30mm lens on a film camera). So go with the kit lens for now, if for no other reason than to have the wide angle capability. That's pretty much all I use it for.
05-22-2007, 04:01 PM   #7
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Thanks guys! You've all been a really great help. I can't wait to get shooting with my K10D.
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