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02-27-2010, 12:47 PM   #1
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pentax 12-24mm, sigma 10-20mm, or...?

Hello,

I was just hoping to get some opinions from people on rectilinear lenses in the low mm area, 10-15. I'm slightly lost on which to purchase, is the Pentax 12-24 really twice as good as the Sigma (it costs twice as much in the UK). Alternatively there seems to be a rumour about 10-15 and I'd get that in an instant but is that just a rumour or is there any substance to it whatsoever? I'm not at all averse to primes either, as my dear wife knows, but 14 mm isn't quite the 10-12 I'm looking for.

Many thanks in advance

02-27-2010, 01:22 PM   #2
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You pose an interesting question. I considered the Sigma 10-20 about 20 months ago. Almost pulled the trigger, however I was about to leave on a trip and just decided to go with what I had. I wound up later acquiring the DA 12-24 and have been happy. Some say that the 12-24 is not sufficiently wide, but the 2mm additional translates in to about 2+change degrees in additional width, which for me is essentially a wash.

The operative question is cost, at twice the cost, is the Pentax twice the lens. Well for me the price difference was I think about 25% at the time and I just held my breath and went ahead. At twice the price, I think I would probably be now - shooting with a Sigma lens.

I have seen some wonderful images from the Sigma lens. I do not think that its inferior to say the least. From what I have observed, I saw wonderful colors and no distortion that I could not live with. In the end they are both fine lenses, and it does come down to cost. Unless you are a professional, its a hobby, after all....

02-27-2010, 01:28 PM   #3
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OK next person to post this question has to buy the next round, it's been asked a BILLION times on both forums.
02-27-2010, 02:44 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
OK next person to post this question has to buy the next round, it's been asked a BILLION times on both forums.
Thanks, very helpful. I did search around but some other lens might have come into existence in the meanwhile, hence the question, and hence it'll keep getting asked.

interested_observer - very good point. Although there's a certain 'cachet' with the Pentax stuff, I wonder if the sigma 10-20 is really "SO" awful

02-27-2010, 03:04 PM   #5
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Ive never tested the Pentax 12-24, its far to expensive for me. At least here in Sweden.
I own a Sigma 10-20 4-5,6 and I just love it. Maybe Ive been lucky ang bought a good copy but anyway it really delivers great results. Many others here also uses the 10-20, check out the 10-20 Club. https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/84539-sigma-10-20mm-club.html

Last edited by PFH; 02-28-2010 at 07:53 AM.
02-27-2010, 03:17 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nass Quote
interested_observer - very good point. Although there's a certain 'cachet' with the Pentax stuff, I wonder if the sigma 10-20 is really "SO" awful
The Sigma 10-20 is not "so awful" at all. Many Pentaxians - highly experienced and relative newcomers - are happy owners of the Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 lens. If you haven't yet... check out the Sigma 10-20 Club message string:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/84539-sigma-10-20mm-club.html

I currently have all Pentax glass in my kit. And while part of me would really like to keep it that way, I find it very difficult to spring just over $700 (street price, U.S. dollars) for the 12-24... while the Sigma 10-20, at well under $500, can give me the kind of images seen in the message string above. The Pentax is a fine lens but the Sigma is no slouch either - and represents much better value. Just make sure you go for the older f/4-5.6 version, not the newer, more expensive f/3.5 version.

There is talk of a new ultra-wide angle Pentax zoom coming soon - possibly a 10-16mm or something in that area. While that would be great, I've seen nothing yet. And people have been begging for a Pentax-branded version of the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 for years - to no avail. For that reason, I'm not holding my breath. There are a few photo shows due in early and mid-March (mostly in the U.K. and Europe). If Pentax has nothing meaningful to announce at those events, I'd buy the Sigma and never look back.

One caveat: With the very latest Pentax DSLRs - i.e. the K-7 and K-x - there is a setting that minimizes distortion when used with Pentax DA and D-FA lenses. If that's important to you, then go for a Pentax lens. But I've read posts that say the anti-disortion program is not that dramatic - and even works with third-party lenses (although theoretically it's not supposed to). Perhaps some Pentaxians who own those cameras can fill us in. Good luck.
02-27-2010, 03:51 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nass Quote
is the Pentax 12-24 really twice as good as the Sigma (it costs twice as much in the UK).
I too am looking for lenses in this range. In Australia the Pentax lens is only 30% more expensive than the Sigma, which is helpful

If it's useful to you, both lenses are the subject of technical reviews here:
Pentax DA 12-24mm f/4 AL ED [IF] - Review / Test Report

Sigma AF 10-20mm f/4-5.6 EX DC (Pentax K) - Review / Test Report

In IQ terms there doesn't seem to be much between them, in resolution, vignetting, CA etc.

Another option may also be the Tamron 10-24.
02-27-2010, 05:02 PM   #8
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You guys are lucky.

In the UK the pentax 12-24 is quoted at 900 (US1384) and the sigma at 400 (US$615).

It is cheaper for me to fly to f*ckng Canada and back from the UK, buy one there, than to buy a goddam lens here.

Stupid.

02-27-2010, 05:46 PM   #9
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QuoteQuote:
Nass: I'm slightly lost on which to purchase, is the Pentax 12-24 really twice as good as the Sigma (it costs twice as much in the UK).
Actually, here in the states, the 2 lenses cost about the same, so long as you buy the Tokina 12-24 in Canon or Nikon mount. If the Pentax is the better lens, it is not because of price.
02-27-2010, 05:51 PM   #10
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No experience with the Sigma, but the 12-24 is an amazing lens...
02-27-2010, 05:56 PM - 1 Like   #11
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It isn't about which lens is best--it is about which lens is best for YOU, and your needs, which change from individual to individual. For example, do you need a constant aperture, faster lens? For the lenses you are considering, do you already have some of the focal ranges covered? Which end of the range (long or short) better complements your shooting style? Are you already used to and sold on a particular brand? These are just some of the questions you need to answer, before you can decide which lens is best for you.
02-28-2010, 07:36 AM   #12
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I never even considered the pentax 12-24mm - way too expensive. After thinking long and hard I decided to try the Tamron 10-24mm. The reviews were not great and I have not tried the Sigma 10-20mm but I have no complaints about the Tamrons performance. I have not managed to get any shots of the same standard as have been posted in the Sigma 10-20mm club but that is down to my abilities, not the lens. I have found the lens to be a bit soft wide open but it is sharp stopped down a bit. The colours are great, the long zoom range is very handy and the close focus can be quite fun. The sigma has achived cult status but I think that for the same money (in the UK) the Tamron has a lot to offer.
02-28-2010, 07:48 AM   #13
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I've posted this before but I've owned the Sigma 12-24mm and it's a great lens. Sold it because of the hood arrangment that really doesn't allow filters (like ND's). Then followed by a Sigma 10-20mm. Nice lens and very sharp in the center but the wider you go, the softer this lens gets in the corners. I also found it had more distortion and vignetting than I liked at wide FL's. Photozone seemed to see the same things I did.

So I sold it for the 12-24mm Pentax. Clearly the superior lens in every respect. Distortion is better controlled (curved lines at wide apertures) and the lens is sharp across the frame even when wide open. It costs more but if you demand the best, it can't be beat.
Too bad the price is so high in the UK. Almost double the price here.
02-28-2010, 08:30 AM   #14
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I suggest you also consider the Tamron 10-24mm. It's a bit cheaper, has done a little worse in the reviews than the Sigma until stopped down, however, it's also got a 109 view as opposed to the Sigma 102. If you're trying to create exaggerated perspectives, that additional 7 is something to consider.

It also helped my decision at the time that Amazon Warehouse Deals had one of the Tamrons in stock for super cheap.
02-28-2010, 08:35 AM   #15
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The fact is, if you're looking for sheer quality, The Pentax 15mm limited is where it's at. If you want zoom and more range, the DA* 16-50mm is the bomb (when you get a good one).

If you're looking for unique, artsy pictures, you may not be as concerned about some vignetting and CAs at the edges, or you may be able to stop down, in which case the Tamron is fine.
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