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05-26-2014, 03:43 PM   #1
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Spend my $:Pick My Lens

Hi folks,
New K5IIs is on the way to me and I have zero glass for Kmount.
For reference I am an experienced photographer, used to teach it,have art degree, blah, blah…so I know my way around the cameras( by the way K1000 film cameras were the "standard" back in my teaching days).
Any how…please give me your top 2-3( no more) must have lenses for the K5iis- I hear that she is very at resolving .

05-26-2014, 03:55 PM   #2
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Zooms or primes, and for what purpose? There really is a ton of great lenses out there.

Here are some of my favorites:
SMC Pentax-DA 15mm F4 ED AL Limited Reviews - DA Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database
HD Pentax-DA 35mm F2.8 Limited Macro Reviews - DA Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database (or the SMC version)
SMC Pentax-DA 40mm F2.8 Limited Reviews - DA Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database
SMC Pentax-DA* 300mm F4 ED [IF] SDM Reviews - DA Prime Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database
SMC Pentax-DA 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 ED AL [IF] DC WR Reviews - DA Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database (all-arounder)
SMC Pentax-DA* 60-250mm F4 ED [IF] SDM Reviews - DA Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database *
Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM (Art) Lens Reviews - Sigma Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database *
Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4 DC Macro HSM (Contemporary) Lens Reviews - Sigma Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database *

*If you were to ask me to put together a 3-lens kit, I would get the Sigma 35mm F1.4, Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4 "C", and Pentax 60-250mm F4.

See also our lens databases and in-depth reviews:
Pentax Lenses by Sigma, Tamron, Zeiss, and more - Reviews and Specification Database - Pentax Lens Review Database
Pentax Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database
Pentax Lens Reviews | Pentax in-depth reviews |
Sigma & Tamron Lens Reviews -

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05-26-2014, 04:03 PM   #3
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My top 3? FA43...DA300...DA18-135
05-26-2014, 04:05 PM   #4
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Reccomend getting the 55-300mm WR and a 17-50mm

05-26-2014, 04:19 PM   #5
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12-24 for one.
05-26-2014, 04:19 PM   #6
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Without any criteria, we can just make up our own. (@funguslens: don't spoil our fun by narrowing it down just yet!)

Budget Kit - $US500 budget, wide focal range, auto aperture, second-hand lenses
Pentax DA 16-45 (about $250) - highly rated, cheapest entry to wide angle, not fast but sharp and VG IQ
Pentax-A 50 f1.7 (about $50) (or if you want AF you might squeeze a DA 50 f1.8 into the budget) - nifty fifty great for portraits, low-light, walk-around, close-ups
Pentax DA-L 55-300 - unbeatable at the price (about $200)
Throw in a couple of diopters and you have budget macro as well.

Last edited by Des; 05-26-2014 at 05:00 PM.
05-26-2014, 04:22 PM   #7
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My top 3. All of these are pretty much always mounted on my cameras in various combination, unless I need super long or super wide

1- Sigma 35mm f/1.4 (art)
2- Pentax DA* 50-135 f/2.8
3- Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4.5 (version 1) but now it would be the 17-70 (contemporary)
05-26-2014, 04:23 PM   #8
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Do you like a small kit? Limiteds 15, 20-40 zoom and 70 are a great start. Add telezoom of your choice for speed, size or whatever most speaks to you; when in doubt get a copy of the 55-300, any version!

05-26-2014, 04:40 PM   #9
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Hey, welcome! Good choice with the camera, congrats!
What's your budget and what are your priorities?
Considering you have an art degree, I assume you won't be taking sports photos or travel snapshots. I suggest you start with the glass that makes Pentax interesting and exotic - the FA limiteds. Like the FA 43mm ltd. Its a great lens, so great Pentax even made it in Leica mount. And it has the kind of build quality you won't find in many new lenses these days! Metal instead of plastic! Even has aperture ring so it can be used on an old film camera like the K1000 (many if not most modern lenses don't have an aperture ring, its all automatic, chosen via the camera)

If you want something on the cheaper side, but still with high IQ, I suggest you look at the DA 35mm f2.4, DA 40mm (XS or ltd) and DA 50mm f1.8. These are more budget-friendly and are usually recommended to new users. Very sharp lenses, though, and fast AF.

Regarding wider angles, the DA 15mm ltd is a well-loved lens due to the way it renders a scene. The DA 12-24mm is another option, if you prefer the flexibility of zooming and more standard rendering. Or the slightly funky DA 10-17mm fisheye zoom! Can take some very dramatic photos, and can be digitally de-fished to look like a rectilinear ultra-wide angle. Lots of people love its character.

Pentax also makes three lenses that focus down to true 1:1 macro! All three of them are great performers, macro or otherwise: DFA 50mm, DFA 100mm, and DA 35mm ltd. Macro lenses, as you probably know, tend to have amazing sharpness, flat field of focus, high contrast rendering. Not as much 'character' as some other Pentax lenses, since they follow other priorities (brutal efficiency and all that)

Portraits? DA* 55mm f1.4 - made for good skin tone rendering and pretty bokeh.

Or do you want a single "do it all" lens? Then consider the DA 18-135mm. Not as amazing IQ as the other lenses mentioned here, but it has a nice zoom range, it is WR, decently fast AF.. many users like how convenient it is, and it is no slouch in IQ considering the price

Many Pentax lenses are also Weather Resistant, if you want that kind of kit (of course, both camera and lens need to be WR if you want to use them in bad weather).

A good thing with Pentax cameras is that the lenses you used on your K1000 will also fit on your modern DSLR! Sure, they might not have AF or auto aperture (depending no how old the lens is), but K-mount lenses will fit your camera even if they were made in the 70s. (Just beware a rare few lenses that have the infamous Ricoh pin sticking out the back)

Last edited by Na Horuk; 05-26-2014 at 04:54 PM.
05-26-2014, 04:52 PM   #10
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Come on, where are all the people advocating the great heritage lenses? Until the OP narrows it down you have a free hand!
05-26-2014, 05:11 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Des Quote
Come on, where are all the people advocating the great heritage lenses? Until the OP narrows it down you have a free hand!
OP already knows what is needed
05-26-2014, 05:37 PM   #12
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OP is surprised that there are so many varied responses.I need to be specific.
I like speed and I like to push the bokeh.I can't even see purple well cause I am colour blind
I also like the feel of nice stuff(who doesn't)- as long as it works.I had a Noctilux once(sold) and while it was supposed to be the super lens of all super lenses, focusing was nearly impossible with it,thing weighed a ton, and really did not make too many great shots unless the cosmos aligned, everybody stayed relatively still, and I nailed the moment or got lucky.

I thought everyone would tell me to get the FA31mm & FA77mm !??- are they not the cat's ass?
I like the way the sun looks with the DA15mm- no?
I will shoot anything- but can K5iis handle sports?- thought AF was not quick enough?… and then what do you stick on it, the 200mm f2.8?
OK- I need to make this more challenging- Top two lenses and I have $1200 to spend. Period.Wife will be watching!
05-26-2014, 06:01 PM   #13
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DA 35 Limited, FA 77 Limited, D FA 100 Macro WR - my current three faves.
05-26-2014, 06:05 PM   #14

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F*300, FA*85, and FA*24 are my essential kit. I've discovered I'm not the only one here who thinks this.

The FA135 is an affordable alternate that can work with (or in place of) the 85 or 300 at times.

The DA*16-50 and (especially) DA*50-135 are my kit when I need zoom. The F*300 and/or DA10-17 will often go with them.
05-26-2014, 06:24 PM   #15
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If you limit yourself to 3, the FA 31, 43 and 77 would be amazing.

For me, personally, though, I like the DA 18-135, because it's got a nice zoom range, nice pictures, and it's weather resistant. A great combo.
For a fast normal, I've got the Sigma 30mm/1.4. It's nearly always with me.
My third favorite is the Tamron 70-200/2.8. When I really really want beautiful rendering, and don't mind the weight, and have room to move back, this is THE lens for me.

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