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11-17-2011, 08:58 PM   #1
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Tell me I am crazy -- new lens choices

You guys have lots of opinions on lens choices. I have been paying attention.

I just bought a used K-5, moving from a Canon 20D. I have budgeted 2K for lenses, which will require selling some gear from other systems. I want at least one weather resistant lens. I do some street, landscape and casual portraiture.

With my canon, the three lenses I used most: 28mm 1.8; 50 mm 1.4 and 70-200 f4.

With my roughly 2k, my choices are.

Pentax DA 55mm 1.4
Pentax DA 50-135 2.8
Tamron 17-50mm 2.8

I would love the 31 mm 1.8, but it is a budget buster and I might still crave something wider.

Tell me I am crazy. Spend my money any way you want. I will pull the trigger in a couple of days.

Curtis (chicurt)

11-17-2011, 09:41 PM   #2
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Sounds like a pretty good setup. If you'd like the 31mm, maybe get the FA 50 and then save up for the 31mm?

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11-17-2011, 09:44 PM   #3
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I agree with Adam, and the cost difference between a DA*55 and FA50 is huge compared to the small improvement in IQ (if review test results can be trusted, which is not always the case LOL).

I wonder if you could buy a Sigma 30 f1.4 & a FA50/1.4 for the cost of a DA*55? Probably, and if so it would be a better way to go IMHO. Or just a FA50/1.4 and save towards a FA31 as Adam suggests. If you buy well secondhand you won't lose much if you change your mind.
11-17-2011, 09:57 PM   #4
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I had not considered the sigma 30mm 1.4. This is why I asked. Thanks.

11-17-2011, 09:58 PM   #5
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You're crazy but go for it anyway. Sanity is something I've never seen much of around here. Welcome to the club.

Pentax DA*50-135 SDM - a set on Flickr

Pentax DA*55mm SDM - a set on Flickr

11-18-2011, 01:01 AM   #6
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You did not have 17mm with your Canon (it's an APSc camera as well), so why go for it now? You're also going to sacrifice part of the longer end?

With that out of the way
FA31Ltd + DA*50-135 to start with; use it for a while and see if you really have a need for a fast fifty (while you're saving for it)
11-18-2011, 02:04 AM   #7
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Or you can get DA35/2,4 instead of FA31. It does 4/5th of the job for 1/5th of the price.
11-18-2011, 02:40 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
the cost difference between a DA*55 and FA50 is huge compared to the small improvement in IQ (if review test results can be trusted, which is not always the case LOL).

.
Not always the case
After my short time with the FA50 (quite a while ago), I found it very "meh".
The DA*55 is truely some thing else.
I wouldnt say that its a "small improvement", its quite a difference

QuoteQuote:
Whatever the chosen f-stop and lens placed in competition, the DA * 55 is always the best defined and most creamy: it is a success. From f1.4, the quality of its definition creates a unique feeling in the floor with the gray areas: a delight for the portrait.
The FA 50: its sharpness is less striking, its bokeh is not as creamy. It remains a safe bet on a base of € 250/300 but it is fair to say that with a price two times, the DA * 55 is well to give two times the image quality.
The logic is respected and the Pentax such a budget that will invest in the DA * 55 will know that its results will be truly unique in the Bokeh.
Heres the link-
Google Translate



11-18-2011, 02:59 AM - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by TOUGEFC Quote
Not always the case
After my short time with the FA50 (quite a while ago), I found it very "meh".
The DA*55 is truely some thing else.
I wouldnt say that its a "small improvement", its quite a difference

Come on Simon, don't tell me that, I've got a FA50 on the way to me in the mail
11-18-2011, 04:27 AM   #10
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I too really love the DA *55 and never really connected with the FA 50.

To me, it looks like a decent set up. As the others have said, if you truly want to emulate your Canon set up, you could chose the Sigma 30 and even consider the Tamron 70-200. The Tamron is obviously a different range from the Pentax 50-135, but it is plenty sharp throughout. Biggest downside to me with it is losing the wide end (and it's quite a bit bigger).
11-18-2011, 05:29 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by chicurt Quote
You guys have lots of opinions on lens choices. I have been paying attention.

I just bought a used K-5, moving from a Canon 20D. I have budgeted 2K for lenses, which will require selling some gear from other systems. I want at least one weather resistant lens. I do some street, landscape and casual portraiture.
Based on that, I'd go:

DA 21 Limited - small and compact, great for street and 'scapes, great walk-around lens
DA* 55 - your portrait and low light lens
DA* 50-135 - for portraits & long lens 'scapes, for street it's big and bulky, and I don't recommend long lenses for street, but if you prefer long lens street shooting then this can be very flexible.

Comes out to USD $1998 on B&H as of a few minutes ago.

Still trying to wrap my head around US prices. Here in the Philippines, that trio comes out to over USD $3K.

You get a small compact Limited (size=one of the reasons I love Pentax vs NiKanon), and you also get 2 fast & weather sealed DA*'s.

Cheers.
11-18-2011, 05:59 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I too really love the DA *55 and never really connected with the FA 50.
I agree very much. I sold my Fa50 after trying out the DA*55. Sigma 50/1.4 may comapre better, but still I'd say the DA*55 is the best portrait solution for APS-C.
11-18-2011, 07:46 AM   #13
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Oh here we go .... our favourite game, spending other people's money on lenses for them !

Some very solid suggestions already. So maybe something just a touch different (prices quoted are from B&H's website) - I've excluded MF lenses as you don't indicate you are comfortable with them otherwise the options would be even more varied :

Pentax 15 Ltd : I bought this a few months ago and it is totally addictive (check out the dedicated 15 Ltd thread here on PF). Just a fantastic lens, maybe it could convert you too. US$510

Tamron 17-50/2.8 - this is a wonderful lens and unbeatable for the money. US$450

Sigma 30/1.4 - this is just an amazing lens, if you want a landscape lens then this isn't it (though it'll do the job) but for creativity, portraits and street shooting it is near perfect and damn near focuses and shoots in the dark. US$490

Pentax 35/2.4 (EDITED thanks to dgaies) offers superb IQ for an unbelievable low price - it should be in everyone's bag regardless of what else you have around this FL. US$170

Pentax DA 70 Ltd - much better than the 77 Ltd across the frame with centre sharpness not far off. Superb value for money. US$550

Pentax 50-135/2.8 - I'd like to say the Sigma 50-150/2.8, which IMHO is a better lens than the Pentax, but since it's discontinued (and replaced by a monster) you can only buy it used though it's just superb if you can find it. Otherwise the lovely 50-135 for US$850

The 31 Ltd seems definitely over-priced for what it is - there's far more you can do with the money and get 99% of the IQ ..... or better.

So that gives you quite a few to choose from, personally I'd go for the 15Ltd, 17-50, 30/1.4 and 50-135 to get you started for US$2,300.

Though to keep within your 2k limit it'd be 17-50, 30/1.4, 35/2.4 and 50-135 totaling US$1,960 and offering you fantastic IQ, creativity galore and WR from 50 thru 135mm for when it rains !

Last edited by Frogfish; 11-18-2011 at 08:12 AM.
11-18-2011, 07:48 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
Pentax 35/2.4 is a WR lens offering superb IQ for an unbelievable low price - it should be in everyone's bag regardless of what else you have around this FL.
I agree with everything in that statement, except that the 35/2.4 isn't a WR lens
11-18-2011, 08:07 AM   #15
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A different approach. When you don't use for portraits the f1.4 to f2.5 apertures then you could also skip the DA*55mm. Use the DA*50-135mm for portraits (wich it can do perfectly) and your walk in the rain lens. Pick-up the FA31mm and of you go. If there is still biudget left over then maybe something wider in the future.
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