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04-08-2010, 04:24 PM   #16
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DA 21 should be first considered, if you have a film SLR, you will understand what I said. Otherwise, you may get it when you have both 21 and 40.

04-08-2010, 06:11 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by henryjing Quote
DA 21 should be first considered, if you have a film SLR, you will understand what I said. Otherwise, you may get it when you have both 21 and 40.
I don't get it. The DA 21mm won't work on a film slr.
04-08-2010, 07:22 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by clipsed Quote
I will be making my first big investment in lenses and would like to hear some advice . When i use my 18-55mm lens i seem to almost always be shooting at either the long or short end.

I was thinking about the tamron 17-50mm.

OR

Going for primes.

I would really love the image quality and would think maybe a 43mm or 40mm limited as my first real lens purchase, followed by a 15mm/21mm limited for landscape.

Is going primes satisfying/necessary for great image quality? ? or will the tamron give me the image quality i desire. thanks!
I think the nature of any zoom is you use the 2 ends the most...

The 17-50 is a constant f2.8, so at the long end it will be 2 stops faster than the kit, and also provides a thinner depth-of-focus for a blurrier background. And, better image quality.

Personally, I don't think you can go too wide, and the 12-24 is a very useful range.

Last edited by SpecialK; 04-10-2010 at 04:58 PM.
04-08-2010, 08:44 PM   #19
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QuoteQuote:
Tokyoso: +1... the difference between 18-55 and tamron 17-50 may not be great enough to justify the price tag. I got myself a DA prime because it's smaller, its easy to walk around town with, and it looks nice on the camera.
I own the 18-55wr ($100) & the Tamron 17-50 ($440, though can get cheaper now) and I feel the difference in $$ spent is justified, though of course this would not be true for everyone.

In tests I've seen done here (indoors and at very short subject distances, along with reduced-sized pics) the 2 lenses appear similar. But @ full resolution, shooting longer distances, a pic from each lens, put side by side, reveals an amazing difference in quality and resolution. Of course, to take advantage of this, one needs to print larger than 4 x 6. Every once in a while I fall in love with a shot, or someone I know does, & it is most assuring to know I can print that shot large and extra large and still maintain excellent IQ.

Also, as already mentioned, having more speed, at constant aperture & access to shallower DOF is a nice thing. For me, this focal range is my most important, so I am usually reluctant to shoot the 18-55, unless I know for sure the shots will be meaningless.

However, dollar for dollar, the 18-55 is a great choice, and no accident it is found in the Pentax kit package.

04-08-2010, 08:49 PM   #20
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Rio Rico: Our preferences reflect our financial and emotional investment in what we each have. It's risky to base a solid analysis on the emotions of others.
You make an excellent point, and one which is usually ignored here in discussions: many comments on equipment are underpinned by an emotional element. That emotional element is non-transferable.
04-09-2010, 07:46 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jewelltrail Quote
You make an excellent point, and one which is usually ignored here in discussions: many comments on equipment are underpinned by an emotional element. That emotional element is non-transferable.
While that is true, I think some of us can put emotions aside. I have certainly bought many lenses I wish I hadn't. The mere fact I bought them does not make me think any better about them. And there are lots of lenses I know are great but can never afford. That doesn't make me hate them.
04-09-2010, 08:38 AM   #22
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rparmar: While that is true, I think some of us can put emotions aside. I have certainly bought many lenses I wish I hadn't. The mere fact I bought them does not make me think any better about them. And there are lots of lenses I know are great but can never afford. That doesn't make me hate them.
Sure & +1 for you, but many people can not. Often new members come here seeking advice, and disentangling facts from non-facts in these threads must be difficult for them. The emotional turbulence appears to stem much more from the love end of the spectrum than the reverse, from what I can see.

That is why I find Rio Rico's observation so important: it brings this normally subconscious element to the surface, if only for a moment.
04-09-2010, 10:24 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jewelltrail Quote
Often new members come here seeking advice, and disentangling facts from non-facts in these threads must be difficult for them. The emotional turbulence appears to stem much more from the love end of the spectrum than the reverse, from what I can see.
In our discussions and recommendations here, we talk/write about what we know and what we THINK we know. "It ain't what we don't know that hurts us, but what we know that ain't so." --Mark Twain?

Some factors are entirely quantitative -- we can measure physical and optical characteristics, or we can rely on others' measurements (I'm not counting lines-per-millimeter by myself, thanks!). Some are entirely subjective -- we like or don't like our experience with something, including its price and feel as well as performance. Some are a blend -- compilations of user ratings, for example.

Only the quantitative is objective fact, but facts aren't uniform. Not all lenses and cameras of the same model were built equally, especially Russian 6x6 bodies made on Mondays. Everything is built within tolerances, and sometimes new and used items go out-of-tolerance. Or each individual piece may be at the edge of tolerance, but together they aren't compatible. Then we say, THIS SUCKS!

Some qualities that we notice, we don't measure, such as tones and saturation imparted by glass, which may change as it ages -- have you checked your lenses' spectral transmission curves lately? Or the torsion required to turn a ring, which we may just call loose or tight or grungy. If we don't measure, then we just slip back to the subjective -- we like it or we don't.

Example of the last: My Industar-50 has a really grungy-sticky focus ring. I hated it. Then I found it was apochromatic, and I put it on extension tubes, and it's the sweetest little macro performer around. I love it. Moved to a context where the stickiness doesn't matter, it's great.

Financial investment colors our emotions. If we bought something for a LOT (or very little) and it performs adequately, we may value it more than something at a midrange cost that performs better. We tell ourselves that the high price was A Good Investment, or the low price was A Real Deal -- and now we're emotionally involved. Is my US$1000 Sigma APO DGL 175-500/5-6.3 really 8x better than my US$120 Pentax FA 100-300/4.7-5.8? I try to tell myself it is... and I'll brag about the super-duper heavy long tele I have. But I'll carry the plastic Pentax around more. [Don't tell me I was an idiot to buy the Lil'Bigma; that was obvious all too soon.]

So, all recommendation here should be viewed skeptically. Especially mine.

04-09-2010, 02:18 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
I don't get it. The DA 21mm won't work on a film slr.
I think his point wasn't that it was a good lens for film users, but rather, that people who have a background in film will probably already be familiar with the FOV of a 31mm or 35mm lens, and presumably like it enough to instantly see the value of a DA21 on APS-C. Me, I find that a difficult focal length range to get into.
04-09-2010, 02:49 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jewelltrail Quote
I own the 18-55wr ($100) & the Tamron 17-50 ($440, though can get cheaper now) and I feel the difference in $$ spent is justified, though of course this would not be true for everyone.

In tests I've seen done here (indoors and at very short subject distances, along with reduced-sized pics) the 2 lenses appear similar. But @ full resolution, shooting longer distances, a pic from each lens, put side by side, reveals an amazing difference in quality and resolution. Of course, to take advantage of this, one needs to print larger than 4 x 6. Every once in a while I fall in love with a shot, or someone I know does, & it is most assuring to know I can print that shot large and extra large and still maintain excellent IQ.

Also, as already mentioned, having more speed, at constant aperture & access to shallower DOF is a nice thing. For me, this focal range is my most important, so I am usually reluctant to shoot the 18-55, unless I know for sure the shots will be meaningless.

However, dollar for dollar, the 18-55 is a great choice, and no accident it is found in the Pentax kit package.
point well taken.

i noticed that the tamron 17-50 and 28-75 have lowered in retail prices lately, probably in anticipation of new lens releases? I'm inclined to pick up the 28-75mm since I dont have one in this range...

Last edited by tokyoso; 04-09-2010 at 02:55 PM.
04-09-2010, 02:57 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
I think his point wasn't that it was a good lens for film users, but rather, that people who have a background in film will probably already be familiar with the FOV of a 31mm or 35mm lens, and presumably like it enough to instantly see the value of a DA21 on APS-C. Me, I find that a difficult focal length range to get into.
Ok, now it makes sense. I used a Minolta Hi-Matic G with fixed 35mm lens for fourteen years. I used digital p&s cameras for several years with 35mm as their widest angle, so I am very comfortable with that FL. That's one reason I can't close the door on the DA 21mm. The other reason is that it just doesn't seem right to shoot Pentax and not have a single pancake lens.
04-10-2010, 02:55 PM   #27
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You're right - it's not right :-)
04-11-2010, 07:07 AM   #28
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Interestingly the DA 21 does not get a good average review in some of the japanese boards. (ex: 価格.com - ペンタックス smc PENTAX-DA 21mmF3.2AL Limited レビュー・評価) - scores 4.32/5 out of 52 reviewers. the DA 15 scores a 4.67/5 in comparison.

Probably not a FL issue but more in comparison to other pentax lenses.
04-11-2010, 07:39 AM   #29
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As you have the full range covered with your zooms, I suggest prime. FA31 Ltd if you can afford it, DA35 Ltd if not. I only shoot with two lenses anymore. I have two K20Ds; one has a 31 ltd mounted and the other a Sigma 18-250 IS HSM.
04-19-2010, 09:56 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
it just doesn't seem right to shoot Pentax and not have a single pancake lens.
QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
You're right - it's not right :-)
I had a weak moment on the weekend.... one DA 40mm Ltd, on the way.
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