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01-08-2012, 06:03 AM   #1
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lens upgrade

Hello,

I have a kit -DA 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 AL WR for my k-5 and am looking for a possible upgrade + extension.

the more expensive alternative is a kombination of Pentax SMC-DA 16-50mm / f2,8 and Pentax-DA* 50-135mm F2.8 ED [IF] SDM which surely stretches the budget quite much.... does any of these two have the possibility for macro?

another alternative would be the SMC Pentax-DA 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 ED AL [IF] DC WR which would give greater zoom but I am not sure of the quality improvement over my kit lens in the 15-55mm area


a big plus for me is the WR since I live in Norway and weather is quite an issue here (not to mention condensation especially in winter)

any thoughts, maybe suggestions?
thanks for your help



david

01-08-2012, 06:08 AM   #2
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The other alternative is the DA50-200WR and the DA*16-50/2.8. I have the DA18-135 and it is tact sharp.
01-08-2012, 07:54 AM   #3
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The 18-135 is an improvement over the DAL18-55 optically and the added WR is a serious bonus. I looked at combination sets to go from 16-18 to 200 and realized that if I really need the water resistance that I would end up having to pick one of the two lenses and leave it on the camera or risk water intrusion into the camera by changing lenses in the field under poor conditions. That was what led me to finally select the 18-135WR lens - its not as long as the 50-200 or quite as wide as the *16-50 but it covers the essential range and does it in one lens thereby avoiding the issue of changing lenses under bad conditions.
01-08-2012, 08:01 AM   #4
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very good point!

thanks

01-08-2012, 09:50 AM   #5
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Glad for å være til hjelp. Good Luck.
01-12-2012, 05:11 PM   #6
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after a few days in this forum and browsing a lot of lens lens reviews, etc- I am getting more and more unsure where to start.

here's the deal: we're getting a baby soon and I will de needing a good lens for baby-shots or the grandparents, who all live in another country, will be severly disappointed to say the least. On top of that we're going on a 5 week Singapore/Indonesia trip in August, so I want to have one (or more) very good travel lens(es) since this will be a kind of "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity" (or at least the last one for a long time)
And, as I mentioned, I live in Norway, which kind of demands a wide lens as well....

I am not sure if I should go for 2 zooms or one very good prime + 1 zoom or just primes that cover the essential sizes.

when choosing 2 zooms I first thought about the DA* 16-50 and the DA*50-135

the sigma alternative is actually as expensive here as the above with 17-50mm F2,8 EX DC OS HSM and Sigma 70-200mm F2,8 EX DG OS HSM while giving me greater zoom - not sure if I am going to need it, but it surely won't hurt.

then there is the Sigma 24-70mm F2,8 EX DG HSM which is very expensive and would blow my budget together with the 70-200

to list all those prime-options is surely endless, so I would ask for a little advice here... is there something like a very good walk-around prime (ltd?) ? which maybe would make a zoom in this area unnecessary?

I would rather buy one very good lens to instead of 2 "all-right" ones to upgrade later... I already have an upgrade-disease to keep in check with my other hobby (Audio)

I researched a little into WR with other photoists here in Norway (as my biggest concern was condensation in wintertime) and with a little caution it is not strictly necessary .

I appreciate your help!
01-12-2012, 06:08 PM   #7
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the DA 35mm f2.8 Macro works wonders on this body, but so does a lot of other lenses too.... haha
01-12-2012, 06:13 PM   #8
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I've had that disease, among others.
At various times I have owned the 18-55wr, 18-135, 16-45 and Sigmas 17-70 (version1) and their newer 18-50 f/2.8-4.5*. In each case I was able to do head-to-head tests between two or more, and in each case the kit was 'good enough'. I do not examine 100% corner views at every aperture or anything, just shoot a few FL/apertures and look at 'em. My copy of the 18-135 is a very good 18-100, and it seems that others feel the same; without in-cam corrections or more PP later the fringing is too much once past 100mm. The 18-55 had the most distortions, but it exposed slightly better than the Sig 17-70 and focuses nearly as close. The 18-50 is nice and can be had for under $200 - but that would be an 'all-right' lens that you don't seek.

My overall champ would be the DA16-45, but no WR mark it down for me - and shading with the onboard flash might not serve you (though no baby should be hit with a flash for a few months in my mind, I hate seeing them wince).

* Edit - geez, I forgot the 18-200 Sigma was also in the mix. Certainly handy for anything, and needed just a pinch of sharpening to give excellent results to my eyes. I have not tried it out on a 16Mpixel sensor though.. not yet!



Last edited by jimr-pdx; 01-12-2012 at 06:27 PM.
01-13-2012, 06:11 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by slartibartfast Quote
to list all those prime-options is surely endless, so I would ask for a little advice here... is there something like a very good walk-around prime (ltd?) ? which maybe would make a zoom in this area unnecessary?
Yes FA31Ltd makes anything between 24mm and 50mm (possibly 70mm) obsolete Works for me

Without breaking the bank, I would keep the DA18-55WR, add the DA-L35/2.4 (plastic wonder; not the DA35Ltd) and add a telezoom like the DA55-300 (very good value for the money). And next you can make variations on the theme.
Replace kit lens with Tamron or Sigma 17-50 (see DA* 16-50mm vs. Sigma and Tamron 17-50mm F2.8 Comparison - Introduction - PentaxForums.com) or DA17-70 (has at least a seal on the mount so partially weather proof).
Replace the kit lens by a UWA zoom (DA12-24, Sigma 10-20) and use the DA-L35/2.4 as your standard lens.
Replace DA55-300 by DA50-200WR or DA*60-250 (if WR is really important) or by Sigma or Tamron 70-200/2.8 if you want faster.
Too much money? Replace DA-L35/2.4 by FA31Ltd.

My combination with two zooms (and an eye on the finance) would always include the DA55-300. Combined with the Tamron 17-50/2.8, you will have an affordable combination leaving money for a decent flash (something that you more than likely are going to need somewhere along the line). I would prefer the DA17-70 for it's reach but I think it's more expensive.

Note: I only own the DA18-55, FA31Ltd and the DA55-300 from the above mentioned lenses.

Last edited by sterretje; 01-13-2012 at 06:36 AM.
01-13-2012, 11:46 AM   #10
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If you're looking at the 16-50 + 50-135 (ca. US$1,600) and it stretches the budget a bit then I'm guessing the budget is around US$1,200 - 1,300 ? It would help us to know exactly what it is of course ! Also how do you feel about MF only lenses ?

Firstly for your budget, 2 lenses and intended use I think I'd stick with two zooms, even though personally I prefer primes. For baby shots you either want a low light monster or to bounce flash off the walls (never, with a newborn, directly at the baby - even with a softbox) so maybe a nice manual flash like the Yongnuo 560 (about 50 euros) should be included in your budget.

Both of these kits are light enough to carry them around all day.

Lenses Option 1 - Two Zooms - US$1,100
Tamron 17-50/2.8 is an excellent zoom, fast, sharp and would fit very nicely into your budget (ca US$400).
Pentax 55-300 is really incredible value for money for a sharp lens in good light (Asia) (ca. US$250)
and then you have plenty left over to add a wonderful low light lens for baby, portraits and street, the Sigma 30/1.4 (ca.US$450) and your Yongnuo 560 flash.

Alternatively the 50-135/2.8 (US$800) with the Tamron (US$400).

Lenses Option 2 - Primes - US$1,230
Sigma 30/1.4 (US$450)
Pentax 70/2.4 Ltd (ca. US$530). IMO the 77 Ltd is more at around $800 but worth every penny
Pentax 55-300 (US$250) just to cover the long end.

n.b. The 70-200 lenses from Tamron and Sigma are great .. but a bit heavy to be carrying around all day on holiday and overkill inside the house (if you have the required space) !
01-13-2012, 06:24 PM   #11
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thanks for your input!

MF is fine with me

The DA* combo is around 1500€ or 1900 USD here in Europe

Option 1 would be around 600€

1000-1200€ is quite acceptable and option 2 would fit nicely there

I was thinking about the Sigma 24-70mm F2,8 EX DG HSM plus maybe the DA 55-300 ? would be around 1200€ with a Metz Mecablitz 48 AF-1

an extra wide lens would come sometimes later...
01-13-2012, 11:46 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by slartibartfast Quote

1000-1200€ is quite acceptable and option 2 would fit nicely there

I was thinking about the Sigma 24-70mm F2,8 EX DG HSM plus maybe the DA 55-300 ? would be around 1200€ with a Metz Mecablitz 48 AF-1

an extra wide lens would come sometimes later...
The Tamron 28-75/2.8 is considered a better lens than the Sigma 24-70 and is the wedding togs go-to lens - you can not go wrong with that one (US$450).

The Metz 50 AF-1 has replaced the 48 and is the one you should go for there, if buying a Metz (I have the 50 - it's very good).

I see the FA50/1.4 is on sale in the UK at the moment for about US$200 - that's a no-brainer for your low light lens when you don't want to, or can't, use flash - get in there quick !
01-14-2012, 12:22 AM   #13
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Versatile Tamron 28-75/2.8

My Tamron 28-75/2.8 is almost over 4 years old, my first lens and still most used. I use it for portrait sessions ( including kids), head shots, dancers and ballet rehearsals. Also my backup for my 12-24 on the wide end and 50-135 on long end. Minimum focus distance is 12", nearly a macro, great for babies. I could keep my business going with just this lens. Great for travel.
01-14-2012, 12:48 PM   #14
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Tamron AF 28-75mm 2,8 XR DI LD ASL SP Macro
+ Pentax SMC-P DA 55-300mm / f4,0-5,8 ED
+ Tamron 10-24mm F/3,5-4,5 SP Di II LD ASL IF
+ Metz MB 50 AF-1

does that sound ok? bang on budget if new ...
01-14-2012, 01:11 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by slartibartfast Quote
Tamron AF 28-75mm 2,8 XR DI LD ASL SP Macro
+ Pentax SMC-P DA 55-300mm / f4,0-5,8 ED
+ Tamron 10-24mm F/3,5-4,5 SP Di II LD ASL IF
+ Metz MB 50 AF-1

does that sound ok? bang on budget if new ...
Sounds terrific. If budget gets too tight you can find the DAL version of the 55-300 for less and you loose metal mount, quick shift for manual focus, and hood, but keep the same optical formula. Hoods can be had for <$10. It could save you $100 or so, again if things are tight.
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