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01-09-2010, 12:11 PM   #1
Richie1978
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Don't know what to buy

Hi,

since weeks I can't decide what lense to buy.

Right now I have a Sigma 17-70 and Sigma 70-300. Since I used a USM lens (a friend of mine owns a Canon) I became addictet to the noiseless focusing.

I mainly do landscape shooting (mainly in the Southwest USA - where I go almost every vacation). This also means a lot of hiking.

So I can't decide between these two options:

Sell the Sigma 17-70 and buy the new Sigma 17-70 HSM because of the HSM
Sell the Sigma 70-300 and buy the DA 55-300 (because of the extra reach at the wide end).

Or:

Buy the Sigma 18-250 as a lens for traveling/hiking, sell the Sigma 70-300 (I don't need the Tele that often), and keep the Sigma 17-70 for the occasions where I can need the faster aperture.

The most reviews say that the Sigma 18-250 is about the same IQ like the DA 18-250. So if this is the case, do you think I will be disappointed by the image-quality compared to the lenses I own right now?

Thank you
Richie

01-10-2010, 04:59 AM   #2
Richie1978
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No one any suggestions?
01-10-2010, 05:24 AM   #3
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It is a very personal decision. I would not buy the 55-300 for the wide-end in your case, but the better performance in the long zoom range above 200mm. If you do not need that range, the point becomes moot.
The old 17-70 goes down in max aperture fast, and in the long range (55-70, I think), it is slower than the Pentax at 4.5. The new 17-70 has its slowest at 4.0, just like the Pentax.

I am not a huge fan of variable aperture zooms, except for the inexpensive long zoom I rarely use. Therefore I would get the 24-70/2.8 HSM, which likely blows the 17-70 out of the water in terms of IQ. But I already have the 16-50 from Pentax, which is quiet enough for me.

If I understand your shooting correctly, I am not sure why you would buy the 18-250. It sounds like you shoot slightly wide/normal/slight tele, which the 17-70 does. If the reason why you do not use the 70-300 is lens changes, then by all means, the 18-250 is for you. If the 17-70 does not satisfy you in terms of aperture later on, get the 24-70 HSM, which is rather pricey.
01-10-2010, 05:58 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Richie1978 Quote
No one any suggestions?
If you only limit yourself to SDM/HSM lenses, you give us little to recommend. DA 17-70 f/4 SDM is very good optically, but SDM is known to fail.

In any event, I have the (optically very good) Sigma 50 f/1.4 and its HSM still *works*...something I can't say about one of my SDM lenses.

Also, in landscape photography, you don't necessarily "need" AF, at all. So do consider primes without built-in motors.


Last edited by asdf; 01-10-2010 at 06:10 AM.
01-10-2010, 06:18 AM   #5
Richie1978
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QuoteQuote:
If I understand your shooting correctly, I am not sure why you would buy the 18-250. It sounds like you shoot slightly wide/normal/slight tele, which the 17-70 does. If the reason why you do not use the 70-300 is lens changes, then by all means, the 18-250 is for you. If the 17-70 does not satisfy you in terms of aperture later on, get the 24-70 HSM, which is rather pricey.
The main reason is, that on vacation we do a lot of hiking and it was sometimes really frustrating when you carry three lenses (10-24, 17-70 and 70-300) on a 12 mile hike in the backcountry of Utah (and I don't mean National Park, where there are food courts where you can rest, I'm talking about backcountry where you don't see a single human the whole day).

So the 18-250 would mean one lens less to carry around in such situation. I don't really need fast apertures as most of my pictures are made between f8 and f11 (somtimes f5.6).

But I'm a little bit afraid that the iq (in terms of sharpness) is much less than the Sigma 17-70.
This is what makes me unsure.

Regards,
Richie
01-10-2010, 06:27 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Richie1978 Quote
So the 18-250 would mean one lens less to carry around in such situation. I don't really need fast apertures as most of my pictures are made between f8 and f11 (somtimes f5.6).
A slow lens may hunt in bad weather because auto-focus systems don't like dim light/low contrast.

QuoteQuote:
But I'm a little bit afraid that the iq (in terms of sharpness) is much less than the Sigma 17-70.
This is what makes me unsure.
Sigma AF 17-70mm f/2.8-4.5 DC (Pentax K) - Review / Test Report

Pentax SMC DA 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 ED AL [IF] - Review / Lab Test Report
01-10-2010, 06:30 AM   #7
Richie1978
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I have seen that tests, but I must admit that I'm not really good in interpreting such numbers

I would interpret it that way, that the Tamron 18-250 is not really less sharp, than 17-70 + 70-300 but I'm not sure about that.
01-10-2010, 06:33 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Richie1978 Quote
I have seen that tests, but I must admit that I'm not really good in interpreting such numbers

I would interpret it that way, that the Tamron 18-250 is not really less sharp, than 17-70 + 70-300 but I'm not sure about that.
Too bad they didn't include sample shots for the super-zoom.

01-10-2010, 06:35 AM   #9
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Sounds to me like you should get an 18-250. Stopped down to f8, you would be hard pressed to separate the photos from a super zoom from your other lenses. The one exception is probably at the wide end where it will have more distortion than your 17-70. It certainly would be reasonable to get a Sigma with HSM if that is important to you, although the Pentax/Tamron 18-250 is quite a bit cheaper.
01-10-2010, 07:03 AM   #10
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the DA55-300 is a lot better than the sigma...
01-10-2010, 07:13 AM   #11
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Sell the 70-300 and get a DA55-300mm
If you use macro Keep the Sigma 17-70mm 2.8-4.5.. If not, The new Sigma 17-70 2.8-4 might be better
01-10-2010, 07:27 AM   #12
Richie1978
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This are two options im thinking about all the time:

Sigma 17-70 HSM instead of Sigma 17-70
DA 55-300 instead of Sigma 70-300

or keep the Simga 17-70 and the 70-300 and buy the 18-250 as an additional lens.
01-10-2010, 08:49 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Richie1978 Quote
This are two options im thinking about all the time:

Sigma 17-70 HSM instead of Sigma 17-70
DA 55-300 instead of Sigma 70-300

or keep the Simga 17-70 and the 70-300 and buy the 18-250 as an additional lens.
Why would you buy a 18-250 since you've got that range covered by the 2 zooms. if you're thinking of getting the 18-250mm why not sell the 2 zooms
and a couple of primes instead. It would be helpful in low light
01-10-2010, 08:57 AM   #14
Richie1978
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I know that primes get you the best possible image quality. But I personally prefer zooms. I very seldom shot in low light situations (probably sometimes landscapes but then I use a tripod. Primes are not an option for me.

If I buy the 18-250 I would keep the 17-70 just for the few cases where I could need the 2.8 - 4.5

Like I said I'm just afraid that the 18-250 lacks significant in terms of sharpness compared to 17-70 + 55-300
01-10-2010, 09:01 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Richie1978 Quote
I know that primes get you the best possible image quality. But I personally prefer zooms. I very seldom shot in low light situations (probably sometimes landscapes but then I use a tripod. Primes are not an option for me.

If I buy the 18-250 I would keep the 17-70 just for the few cases where I could need the 2.8 - 4.5

Like I said I'm just afraid that the 18-250 lacks significant in terms of sharpness compared to 17-70 + 55-300
Full-size sample photos from Pentax 18-250mm F/3.5-6.3
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