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01-12-2012, 02:40 AM   #1
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pentax K5, lenses for traveling

Hi , I am buying Pentax K5 (not only) for my upcoming trip. Could you please help me with suggestion satisfying this criteria: max of two lenses, covering macro, portrait, wildlife and landscape. After reading the lens reviews I realize that a compromise will probably have to be reached covering this situation. Also what size memory card would you suggest. Thanks for your help, Danny

01-12-2012, 03:42 AM   #2
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Hi Danny.

As many storage cards as you can lay your hands on, is my suggestion. Last time I travelled abroad, I carried several fast 4GB cards (bigger was much more expensive then, especially in Europe, as I found out), and a slower 16GB just in case. I also carried several USB sticks (which are a lot cheaper, of course) to back up to. I tagged and processed every night, with my little MacBook Pro, so transfer between storage cards was easier (next time I might take my iPad and a connection kit).

I took several lenses on that trip, but found myself using the FA31 and DA14 the most. Now I've got a DA18-135, I'd probably take that for general walk-around outside shooting, but I'd still use the FA31 for critical work, and the DA14 for wide indoor work (mind you, the DA15 is a lot lighter and easier to handle, and with the K-5, the loss of a stop isn't so much of an issue - my last trip was with a K20D). Some people here were critical of the 18-135 when it first appeared, but I've found it to be pretty good for a general zoom. You can't beat primes for high quality work, especially if you want maximum opportunity to crop detail from a bigger shot, but the zooms are obviously easier to work with with you're travelling.

I hope that helps.
Rob
01-12-2012, 04:03 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by zdeneczech Quote
Hi , I am buying Pentax K5 (not only) for my upcoming trip. Could you please help me with suggestion satisfying this criteria: max of two lenses, covering macro, portrait, wildlife and landscape. After reading the lens reviews I realize that a compromise will probably have to be reached covering this situation. Also what size memory card would you suggest. Thanks for your help, Danny
18-135 + 55-300 + raynox 150 (turns 55-300 into a kind of macro)

Shooting RAW I budget on filling a 32GB card every week I'm away. So I take as many 32s as weeks long my holiday is.
01-12-2012, 04:44 AM   #4
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Good all round lenses suggested by twitch. I agree, or if money doesn't permit, then the 18-55 + 55-300 +/- Raynox.
If you review your images everyday on computer, then 8-16GB may suffice - depends on how prolific you shoot.

01-12-2012, 05:51 AM   #5
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If you really insist on macro and 2 lenses:
Sigma 17-70 but consider the pentax 17-70 or the sigma 17-50 for a better image. the macro on the Sigma 17-70 is quite respectable but the other 2 lenses will do a better job.
You can't go past the 60-250 Pentax for a quality zoom.

best value for money on the market I think are the 8G cards. get fast cards so the motor drive can do its job.
01-12-2012, 05:56 AM   #6
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For "covering macro, portrait, wildlife and landscape" with two lenses, you must cheat a little. My minimalist kit for such is the DA18-250, FA50/1.4, and a Raynox close-up optical adapter.

Ah, the Raynox is the cheat: the DCR-150 has a focus range of around 165-205mm / 6.5-8in, while the DCR-250 works at about 125mm / 5in. The focus range is independent of the focal length of the host lens. My DCR-250 weighs 70g, the most lightweight way to approach macro work.

I recommend the DA18-250 or its Tamron twin because that's just the most flexible all-purpose lens EVER! No longer in production, but widely available used. And I recommend the FA50/1.4 as a portrait lens, and for action and low-light shooting -- it's my gotta-get-the-shot lens.

For a minimal 3-lens kit, I recommend adding a Tamron 10-24; others may push other ultrawides like the DA12-24 or one of the Sigmas. I won't argue their comparative qualities right now. But if you find yourself in spaces too tight for a 16-17-18mm focal length, consider an ultrawide.
01-12-2012, 06:33 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
18-135 + 55-300 + raynox 150 (turns 55-300 into a kind of macro)

Shooting RAW I budget on filling a 32GB card every week I'm away. So I take as many 32s as weeks long my holiday is.
I also like that suggestion for a two lens solution. For a smaller, much cheaper kit, the 18-55 and 50-200 works if your light is good. The 55-300 is a superior lens, but it is much larger, and the difference in quality may or may not be noticeable depending upon where one shoots and what one does with the photos. I have both, but the 55-300 has yet to make a long trip with me.

That is also about my shooting pace, but I try to keep the cards down to 8g, so that one card failure doesn't hose half my trip. An EEbook at about $200 is a great way to get 250gigs of storage along.

Last edited by GeneV; 01-12-2012 at 06:42 AM.
01-12-2012, 06:49 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by zdeneczech Quote
Hi , I am buying Pentax K5 (not only) for my upcoming trip. Could you please help me with suggestion satisfying this criteria: max of two lenses, covering macro, portrait, wildlife and landscape. After reading the lens reviews I realize that a compromise will probably have to be reached covering this situation. Also what size memory card would you suggest. Thanks for your help, Danny
Hi

I am not into video and don't usually shoot rapid fire machine gun style so I don't use the really big cards. I use lots of 4 or 8GB which suit my requirements. Let me explain why.

When traveling I figured there is an increased chance of theft or absentmindedness resulting in total loss of your precious photos if everything is on one big card.

Last year I witnessed a sad case in Cambodia. An American woman was very distressed when she realised she had lost her P&S. Apparently she had bought something in a shop and when she was at the counter to pay put the camera next to her on the counter and promptly walked away and out of the shop and of course left her cam behind. Fifty metres down the road she realised what had happen, raced back to the shop but her camera was gone.

There was a 32GB card in the cam with two weeks of holiday snaps as well as pictures of her grandchildren she had just visited in Shanghai. All gone. Don't put all your eggs in one basket is good advice not only when investing money.

Changing cards is quickly done (unlike changing film in the old days) and is no big deal. When full store them away in different places, loose one but not all. Anyway this is how I go about it and it suits me.

Greetings

Greetings

01-12-2012, 07:47 AM   #9
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I use medium cards in all my digicams, and smaller overflow cards. I travel with an old sub-laptop (with DVD burner) and a tiny portable 1/2TB drive. At the end of each day, I update-copy all the digicam cards to the external drive. When a card fills, I move its contents to DVDs. I haven't lost any cards yet, over the past decade, but if I *did* have a loss, it would only be one day's worth.

NOTE: I practice extreme paranoia with cameras, cards, computers, etc. Always look at where they are and where they're going, and anticipate what could happen to them. Cards and batteries go into a zipped pouch inside my carry bag. I always assume a camera or bag strap could catch on something, and move it so it won't. Except for a pickpocketed wallet, I've always brought everything back from journeys. (Good thing the thief only got my wallet, not my P&S!) Paranoia is the best loss prevention program.

Last edited by RioRico; 01-12-2012 at 09:42 AM.
01-12-2012, 08:02 AM   #10
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2 lenses covering macro could be DA35 and DFA100
2 lenses covering portrait could be FA31 and DA*55
2 lenses for wildlife could be DA*300 and DA*60-250
2 lenses for landscape I propose DA15 and DFA50.

That completes a very nice kit. But of course you could probably live with less lenses after all... Or try to get some discontinued jewels.
01-12-2012, 09:51 AM   #11
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No, I can not help you.
Get the DA 24 and 40 and see how it works for you. At the end of the trip you will know what you are missing for landscape, macro, wildlife, portrait - in two lenses. May I suggest a tripod?
01-12-2012, 10:24 AM   #12
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12-24 and (28-75 portraits) or 55-300 (wildlife). Portraits is an over-used term now commonly used for general people shots, so if that is what you mean, then the 55-300 would be OK there, too.
01-12-2012, 08:13 PM   #13
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Having tried several different combinations on several different trips, I've boiled it down to this: DA 15 (wide), DA 18-135 (general use, walking around), and DA 55-300 (long). Plus a tripod, or at least a monopod. I have other lenses that are arguably better for a particular thing, e.g., I like the 18-135 but it's not as good as a DA Ltd prime. But to minimize the number of lenses, to take lenses that aren't too big, and (most importantly, to me) to be able to get it all in a bag that I can carry onto an airplane, this combination does the job well.
01-12-2012, 09:26 PM   #14
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Unless WR were vital, perhaps a 17-70, 90/100 macro and 55-300. If by macro you don't mean 1:1 reproduction you will save space & weight without a dedicated lens; the Sigmas 17-70 get mighty close if that's enough. If you need more wide shots than a 12-xx or 10-xx lens may be in order? And you may be shooting interiors, so fast glass may be needed... guess we need to know more than 'trip' to be better choosers!
01-13-2012, 06:13 AM   #15
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DA18-135 + 55-300 would suffice, unless you want WR for all lenses
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