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10-26-2009, 02:09 PM   #1
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Ultra-Wide Choices?

Hey all,

Got a K-7 a few months ago, and then the DA* 50-135 for some fun. Now I'm kind of lamenting my lack of glass on the wide side

What are the best choices when it comes to ultrawides? Both Tamron and Sigma make the 10-22/24, but from some research it looks like sharpness is a huge issue with those.

Anybody got any recommendations in the 9-14mm range (preferably closer to 9 than 14)? I'm ok with manual focus and primes - I really just want something that is *really, really* wide.

10-26-2009, 02:39 PM   #2
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There's no cheap 8-14mm film-age rectilinear prime. The fisheyes on that range (Zenitar 16, Peleng/Opteka 8) are pretty cheap though. Although personally I find them uncomfortably close (50%) to the price of DA 10-17 that I tend to recommend that lens instead.

The cheapest wide angle option below 18mm (kit lens) is the DA 16-45, Sigma 10-20mm and DA* 16-50mm.

Or if you have access to a nikon / canon body, the Pentax clone, Tokina 12-24mm can be had for cheaper than the sigma.
10-26-2009, 03:27 PM   #3
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I'm not overly concerned about price - up to $1K is palatable, nor would I object to film-age lenses that require manual focus In fact, if a film-age lens is the best way to go I'd do it.

[edit]I'm not looking for a fisheye, definitely looking for rectilinear.
10-26-2009, 03:44 PM   #4
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The Pentax DA 12-24 f:4 is an outstanding lens. Distortion control is above average, and IQ can rival the best from Nikon or Canon.

10-26-2009, 03:47 PM   #5
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Just to throw it out there, if you dont mind a sigma lens and want to play with super (like SUPER) wide, get the Sigma 12-24mm If news of pentax going FF next year is true, then you'll have the widest rectilinear on the planet (IINM).
10-26-2009, 04:14 PM   #6
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Any thoughts on the Sigma 10-20 or Tamron 10-24? I don't really need anything into the 20s, and I'd like to go as wide as possible (i.e., 10mm better than 12mm). Reviews on the Tamron seem to indicate a really soft lens, even at f/5.6. Anyone with experience?
10-26-2009, 04:32 PM   #7
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The Sigma 10-20 is a fine choice - I give the edge to the Pentax 12-24 for IQ, but the 10-20 is still very good. And of course the 2mm on the wide end is a big difference in perspective.

Can't say anything about the Tamron 10-24, but if any of their other lenses are a comparison, I'd say it would even trump the Sigma... Tamron really know how to make lenses (for optical quality).
10-27-2009, 07:21 AM   #8
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The concensus is that the Tamron, while focusing closest, and having the largest focal range is very poor in sharpness and has extreme field curature.

I just got a new DA 12-24mm f/4 with 2 year CND warrenty for $700 after taxes and I must say I love it. Sharper than my sigma 17-70mm and seems like the perfect walkaround lens.

10-27-2009, 07:27 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by omega leader Quote
I just got a new DA 12-24mm f/4 with 2 year CND warrenty for $700 after taxes and I must say I love it. Sharper than my sigma 17-70mm and seems like the perfect walkaround lens.
I echo your sentiments about the DA12-24, but wow! where did you get it at that price ? It has been well over 1000$ for the past several months in Canada.
10-27-2009, 08:45 AM   #10
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Your other choices are:

DA 15 and DA 14 - best overall I.Q. but not zooms

Sigma 12-24 (full frame, sharper than the one above, actually, probably almost as sharp as the DA 14 and 15)

A 15 (full-frame prime, used ones go for ~$800 on ebay)
10-27-2009, 03:58 PM   #11
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Primes are ok - but 15 and 14 do not seem wide enough for what I want to do. Are there any 10mm primes - manual or autofocus?
10-27-2009, 04:35 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by potatolicious Quote
Primes are ok - but 15 and 14 do not seem wide enough for what I want to do. Are there any 10mm primes - manual or autofocus?
only fish eye AFAIK

sigma has a few... the widest is 8mm if I'm not mistaken
10-28-2009, 05:34 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by kristoffon Quote
only fish eye AFAIK

sigma has a few... the widest is 8mm if I'm not mistaken
Widest is 4.5mm, full circular fisheye for APS-C
10-29-2009, 07:14 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by omega leader Quote
The concensus is that the Tamron, while focusing closest, and having the largest focal range is very poor in sharpness and has extreme field curature.
The Photozone test of the Tamron 10-24 (in Nikon mount) just came out: Tamron SP AF 10-24mm F/3.5-4.5 Di II LD Aspherical IF - Review / Test Report

Seems very ordinary.
10-29-2009, 07:53 AM   #15
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just a quick recommendation for that Pentax DA12-24 f4... I made this decision just a few weeks ago. I was really trying to decide between it and the sigma, but I'm glad I spent the extra money. Its a lovely lens!
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