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02-12-2010, 08:44 AM   #1
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what next?

Over the past few years I've grown to love my Pentax more than I could have ever hopped... and that love started when I finally started buying some new lenses.

I now have a nice little kit of lenses and would like to expand, but don't know what to get next...

I usually hunt for shots at live music venues, car shows, or holidays. I got a miniature train set I photograph quite a bit, and I have those days where I just like to go out and take photos of random things.

My kit consists of:
K20D
DA* 15-50mm F2.8
DA 50-200mm F4
DA 18-55 F3.5
DA 10-17mm Fisheye
M 28mm F2
M 50mm F1.4
Lens Baby

and two other old lenses, a 45 and a 100-250... I think both by Vivitar.

I'm trying to decide between a 70mm or 40mm Limited lens. Both got great reviews, but I'm having a hard time choosing.

I usually shoot in the 50-100 range when I'm wandering around, so I'm thinking a good prime might be a good idea. However, I also do not have a macro lens.

The biggest problem is, that my local stores carry very limited Pentax... most stuff is special order.

02-12-2010, 09:33 AM   #2
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For the days where you just like to go out and take photos of random things; how about an 18-250? One lens, no muss no fuss. I recently bought the Sigma. I chose it over the Tamron for its HSM but I find I also like the IS as it stabilizes the image in the viewfinder as well as at the sensor. The Sigma and my FA 31 Ltd are the only two lenses I have used since I got the Sigma. As far as the 40 vs 70 dilemma; Think about the situations in which you would likely be using it and ask yourself which would be easier in those situations; getting closer to your subject or getting farther away. I find that I am usually able to get close enough to get the shot I want with my 31 or 40, but in some situations it is very difficult to get a shot from farther away with a longer lens, especially in crowded areas, or indoors.
02-12-2010, 10:07 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
I usually shoot in the 50-100 range when I'm wandering around, so I'm thinking a good prime might be a good idea. However, I also do not have a macro lens.
The lack of a macro lens would definitely be my first priority, specifically a D FA 100mm macro, preferably WR. It's not just great for macros, it also works beautifully as a medium telephoto; compact, sharp, great colour and contrast.

I agree with Parallax, an 18-250 is a lot of fun and very convenient. You could replace the 18-55, 50-200 and Vivitar zoom with an 18-250 for equivalent IQ and improved convenience and portability.
02-12-2010, 10:25 AM   #4
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if I compare your kit and mine (perhaps not fair because of the length of time I have been shooting and the amount of stuff I have collected) I see 2 areas that come up short (Pun intended)

you don't seem to have a good setup for wildlife or sports, getting out to 400mm at F5.6 or faster, and your middle range above 50mm is a little slow,

Sure you have the 16-50 F2.8 and a 50mm F1.4, but above 50mm you are at F4 and for indoor shows, and serious sports you need faster than what you have.

Just an observation.

the other thing I notice, and it is not a bad thing, is that you have two good fast manual primes, the previously noted 50mm F1.4 and the 28mm F2.

Have you thought about expanding you manual collection? perhaps an 85mm F1.8 or F1.9, or 135F2.5? there are some excepllent lenses out there, expecially for the times you just feel like taking pictures.

Although I have a good collection of AF zooms (pentax sigma and tamron) I also have a manual focus K mount kit and an M42 kit.

Most of my K mounts are SMC Pentax with a sprinkling of Kiron at the wide end. All fast and sharp. They are great specific use lenses and for low light.

My M42 kit is, for the most part not as fast but with different characteristics, including 2 tele's with 16-18 blade apertures and quite different bokeh.

These are the go out and play lenses. the primes are in all cases faster than my zooms, but take more time to work with, since exposure and focus are manual.

02-12-2010, 10:30 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
I'm trying to decide between a 70mm or 40mm Limited lens. Both got great reviews, but I'm having a hard time choosing.
The 40 is very good but it's a bit long and slow for a standard lens. Get the 70mm (you mentioned you shoot 50mm-100mm). Just don't buy the superzoom.
02-12-2010, 12:35 PM   #6
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yea i know my 50-100 is weak for faster lenses... which is why I'm thinking i could use a nice good fast prime in the longer focal lengths... especially for shooting live bands.

low light is usually my biggest thing, and right now i find I use the 50mm prime the most for anything low light just because of the IQ and how open i can get it.

I am leaning towards a 70mm limited, and also the 50mm Macro only because I don't got a lot of room to back up when shooting my model trains and I can get pretty close to them if need be.

I don't shoot sports, and I don't shoot wildlife, so theres no need for a long reach there.
02-12-2010, 12:40 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
yea i know my 50-100 is weak for faster lenses... which is why I'm thinking i could use a nice good fast prime in the longer focal lengths... especially for shooting live bands.

low light is usually my biggest thing, and right now i find I use the 50mm prime the most for anything low light just because of the IQ and how open i can get it.

I am leaning towards a 70mm limited, and also the 50mm Macro only because I don't got a lot of room to back up when shooting my model trains and I can get pretty close to them if need be.

I don't shoot sports, and I don't shoot wildlife, so theres no need for a long reach there.
if you want a real low light option why stop at the 70mm F2.4?

I would look into an 85mm F1.8 or F1.4. or perhaps an FA 77mmF1,8
sure the 85's are all MF but in low light AF performance will not be that great any way and you will gain at least a stop on exposure
02-12-2010, 05:44 PM   #8
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Good call, manual focus is fine too as I use my 50mm most of the time anyways!

02-14-2010, 05:09 PM   #9
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I've found a local guy who's willing to sell me his Tamron 70-300mm Di F4 MACRO fpr $120 CAD


would this put me on the right track?
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