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04-17-2011, 09:18 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by tsweers89 Quote
I think im going to go with just the k-r with the single kit 18-55 lens and save my money and see what type of lens i should invest in down the road. To me the first and for most is that i get use to the camera and learn about set-up and such so i don't just leave it in auto all the time. I am a newbie so i have lots to learn. So i think ill start there and see were it take me.
That sounds like a great idea. Get a memory card and you'll be good to go. I don't think the K-r kit lens comes with the lens hood so here is a quick link for you:

Pentax PH-RBA Lens Hood 38741 B&H Photo Video

Kind of up to you whether you want a spare battery or camera bag. But really that is all you need to get started.

04-18-2011, 02:34 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by tsweers89 Quote
True but im completely new to photography so i figured i would not see the difference in a great lens compared to a ok lens. Also after reading reviews it seems that the kit lenses are not that bad. Im trying to get a good starting point without spending a fortune as i don't know how involved i am going to get in this hobby yet.
Depends what you want to photograph, if its slow moving in good light, scenery, portraits, family you will be blown away with the kit lens. I've had mine a week and amazed every time I use it. I took the shots below yesterday, now I'm sure they are imperfect, but **MAN** compared to what I was taken before its a different world. Picked up a 50-200 Samsung (rebadged Pentax DA AL kit lens) and a Pentax FA 80-320 f4.5-5.6 for less than $100 USD each on ebay (bear in mind UK price 20-40% higher than US), former is my favourite for running around with kids in the park as its small and light. Daughter pic is with the 50-200 kit lens and the orchid with the 80-320.

My opinion - the Pentax kit lenses are a great start.
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Last edited by SteveUK; 04-18-2011 at 08:13 AM.
04-18-2011, 09:41 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by SteveUK Quote
Depends what you want to photograph, if its slow moving in good light, scenery, portraits, family you will be blown away with the kit lens. I've had mine a week and amazed every time I use it. I took the shots below yesterday, now I'm sure they are imperfect, but **MAN** compared to what I was taken before its a different world. Picked up a 50-200 Samsung (rebadged Pentax DA AL kit lens) and a Pentax FA 80-320 f4.5-5.6 for less than $100 USD each on ebay (bear in mind UK price 20-40% higher than US), former is my favourite for running around with kids in the park as its small and light. Daughter pic is with the 50-200 kit lens and the orchid with the 80-320.

My opinion - the Pentax kit lenses are a great start.
Thos pictures look great, hope fully i will be able to capture some good ones like that.
04-18-2011, 09:41 AM   #19
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What do you guys recommend as far as tripods? Trying to keep it under $100.
What about this one:Vanguard Nivelo 204BK Tripod w/Rotating Tilt Head NIVELO 204SL

What about a camera bag, there are so many choices i dont know what to look for in one. Its hard to decide between a shoulder bad or a backpack type.

04-18-2011, 12:22 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by tsweers89 Quote
...What about a camera bag, there are so many choices i dont know what to look for in one. Its hard to decide between a shoulder bad or a backpack type.
What bag you need depends on what you want to put in it, where you want to go and .

I wanted a bag that would carry a few extra lenses, my laptop, and some extras like snacks if I was going out for the day with the family - didn't want an additional bag to the bags I already had to carry. I found the Lowepro fastpak 250 on offer at Amazon UK for 46 (about 70 USD) and its great, its about the size of a dell laptop rucksack and the lower half can side open to just take out the camera with large zoom attached, you can fully open it to access other lenses. A good buy for the money, if you want something that size.

You'll be taking great pictures in no time, I just used a couple of tricks :
- Aperture priority mode, set to lowest f number, i.e. "wide open", for narrow depth of field (fuzzy background)
- With the kids, set for repeat shooting, 6 frames per second and then delete the bad ones immediately
- PC package needed, I bought Paintshop Pro, Photoshop Elements is the more common choice, most of the time I'm going for the advised corrections, if you have blemishes/spots/scratches the tool to remove these is a real wonder, for these shots above I just did the smart correction and left it at that
- Used the following settings for bright vibrant pictures, not sure these are really advisable but currently experimenting with them :
Image tone - Bright
Hue - 0
Saturation - 2
High/Low Key - 2
Contrast - 2
Sharpness - 3

Last edited by SteveUK; 04-18-2011 at 12:38 PM.
04-18-2011, 02:15 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by HEEGZ Quote
That sounds like a great idea. Get a memory card and you'll be good to go. I don't think the K-r kit lens comes with the lens hood so here is a quick link for you:

Pentax PH-RBA Lens Hood 38741 B&H Photo Video

Kind of up to you whether you want a spare battery or camera bag. But really that is all you need to get started.
Is there a difference between a name brand hood and say something like this:
Amazon.com: Fotodiox Lens Hood for Pentax Ph-Rba SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL II Zoom Lens as 38741: Camera & Photo

I am not trying to be cheap but i also dont like waste money on something just because its name brand but will do the exact same thing.
04-18-2011, 05:09 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by tsweers89 Quote
Is there a difference between a name brand hood and say something like this:
Amazon.com: Fotodiox Lens Hood for Pentax Ph-Rba SMC DA 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL II Zoom Lens as 38741: Camera & Photo

I am not trying to be cheap but i also dont like waste money on something just because its name brand but will do the exact same thing.
The Pentax hood might be made of slightly thicker plastic. Not worth the extra $$.
04-18-2011, 05:40 PM   #23
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For me it is worth the extra money for the Pentax brand. I suppose the function will be about the same on the lens hoods, but my lenses came with the hoods. Two of the Amazon reviews said there were fit and finish issues as well as the guide line is missing, something I use every time I mount my lens hood.

For tripods, my first nice one will probably be the Slik brand, maybe the Sprint style light weight ones to take hiking with me. There are too many options though, IMO.

For camera bags I bought a Lowepro Slingshot 220. When full of gear it is almost too heavy to comfortably carry, so I would probably recommend the smaller size for lightweight use. It won't hold as much but then it won't hurt your shoulder as well. There are really just so many options here it might pay to visit a camera shop and see what suits your fancy.

04-18-2011, 06:05 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by SteveUK Quote
....

Used the following settings for bright vibrant pictures, not sure these are really advisable but currently experimenting with them :
Image tone - Bright
Hue - 0
Saturation - 2
High/Low Key - 2
Contrast - 2
Sharpness - 3
Better still, shoot in RAW and then you can make all the adjustments you need in PP.
04-18-2011, 06:42 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by HEEGZ Quote
For me it is worth the extra money for the Pentax brand. I suppose the function will be about the same on the lens hoods, but my lenses came with the hoods. Two of the Amazon reviews said there were fit and finish issues as well as the guide line is missing, something I use every time I mount my lens hood.

For tripods, my first nice one will probably be the Slik brand, maybe the Sprint style light weight ones to take hiking with me. There are too many options though, IMO.

For camera bags I bought a Lowepro Slingshot 220. When full of gear it is almost too heavy to comfortably carry, so I would probably recommend the smaller size for lightweight use. It won't hold as much but then it won't hurt your shoulder as well. There are really just so many options here it might pay to visit a camera shop and see what suits your fancy.
Not any camera shops around here, so i may have to just go off of reviews of camera bags and such, I do know id like a backpack and not a bag. I feel its easier to carry around your shoulder then like a briefcase.
04-18-2011, 07:23 PM   #26
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IMHO, a bag is to carry the camera and all your stuff. At the moment, it sounds like you're going to have a camera with the kit lens already attached. I'd say, go cheap, get something small, and get out and shoot. As you start to learn what you like doing with the camera and what accessories and lenses you'll need to accomplish that, then you can start looking for the right bag to carry it all. In my case, I just "borrowed" a bag from my old Hi8 camcorder. That was a free temporary solution. If you like the backpack route, there's a bag insert thingy I saw on Amazon that (if it's actually any good) would let you convert a current backpack into your camera bag for $20. Again, not thinking permanent , long term solution here because newbies like us have no idea what we're going to want to carry around with us a year from now.
04-18-2011, 07:50 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by HockeyDad Quote
IMHO, a bag is to carry the camera and all your stuff. At the moment, it sounds like you're going to have a camera with the kit lens already attached. I'd say, go cheap, get something small, and get out and shoot. As you start to learn what you like doing with the camera and what accessories and lenses you'll need to accomplish that, then you can start looking for the right bag to carry it all. In my case, I just "borrowed" a bag from my old Hi8 camcorder. That was a free temporary solution. If you like the backpack route, there's a bag insert thingy I saw on Amazon that (if it's actually any good) would let you convert a current backpack into your camera bag for $20. Again, not thinking permanent , long term solution here because newbies like us have no idea what we're going to want to carry around with us a year from now.
This is true but i don't like buying things little at a time and replacing with better things as i go along. As in the end your end up wasting more money than if you just bought all the good stuff to begin with.

I think this is the backpack im going with, has great reviews:
Kata 3 in 1 Sling Backpack, Medium KT D-3N1-20 B&H Photo Video
04-19-2011, 01:15 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Qiki Quote
Better still, shoot in RAW and then you can make all the adjustments you need in PP.
My PP skills need some work there, for now those in camera JPEG settings plus PSP smart fix is producing better photos than I could quickly with Raw, I have tried and I do understand the benefit in terms of correcting bad exposure.
04-19-2011, 05:55 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by tsweers89 Quote
I think im going to go with just the k-r with the single kit 18-55 lens and save my money and see what type of lens i should invest in down the road. To me the first and for most is that i get use to the camera and learn about set-up and such so i don't just leave it in auto all the time.
Good for you!! Sometimes beginners get carried away with the technical aspects and forget to simply shoot and learn.

The only thing I did different was buy an 18-200 all-in-one lens. Mostly because I was not sure what focal lengths I would end up liking to shoot.

In the end I found out that I like shooting portraits and family pics and sometimes landscapes. Then I was able to buy some better lenses. Both sigma and tamron makes 18-250 length lenses. Pentax had one too in the past. These lenses are not as sharp but are very versatile and make good travel lenses. Disadvantage: the kit lenses when bundled with the camera cost next to nothing so its kind of a waste not buying the kit lens...
04-19-2011, 06:23 AM   #30
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i think you'll be happy with the kr and the 18-55mm lens.

i can fit my kr with the 18-55mm lens, my 55-300mm DAL and a small prime lens in this bag:
Tamrac 5766 Velocity 6x Sling Pack (Black) 576601 B&H Photo

i like the bag since it holds just enough, isn't too big and easily slips to front/side/back for use on the go.
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