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08-01-2013, 10:53 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nick Vage Quote
Having looked further I have come across these

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Tamron-18-200mm-3-5-6-3-Aspherical-Pentax/dp/B0007XD...I2XSKBW8A458EL

Sigma 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 DC Macro HSM Lens for Pentax: Amazon.co.uk: Camera & Photo

Does anyone know if these would be better purchases than the Pentax 18-135mm, any opinions would be gratefully received.

Many thanks.
We have both the Sigma 18-250 and the Pentax 18-135... and I have to say, in terms of IQ, the Sigma is pretty close, the only thing that keeps it off the camera in many case is it's not WR. But they are both great walk around lenses with the caveat that there's no need to take the 18-135 off the camera from 22 to 30mm as no other lens available for Pentax except the Tamron 17-50) covers that range as well as the 18-135 unless you need ƒ2.8.

I have a thread here where I compared the Sigma 18-250 to the DA* 60-250 and you'll notice, most of the difference in a more corrected lens is in the out of focus areas, and that difference is huge, but is it $1200 huge? It's a personal decision. For the most part we love both the Sigma 18-250 and the Pentax 18-135. Often when we go out my wife Tess has the 18-250 and I have the 18-135 on our cameras. I also have the Sigma 70-300... you won't like that lens much after purchasing the Sigma 18-250. The 18-250 is much stronger in the long end (and the short end), but weaker in the middle where the 70-300 is very good. The one two combo of the 18-250 plus the Tamron 90 macro would be an awesome 1-2 punch. But, you're still going to need primes and DA*s for your best work. Lenses like the 18-135 and 18-250, are always going to have issues in the out of focus areas.

08-14-2013, 04:29 PM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
You always get folks that drift off topic or tell you how something else is better. We all own Pentax gear here (well nearly all) and so the 18-135 from Cannon is irrelevant.
It's quite relevant really as they cover the same focal range.
Having used all 3 lenses, the Pentax is very weak v the Sony and Canon lenses.

I really expected better, it's a real shame.
Ditto on the 18-55mm too sadly comes last out of all the makers in terms of optics.
No reason to not compare lenses to other mounts. Plenty of people did a v with the 35mm f2.4 against the Nikkor 35mm f1.8
08-14-2013, 05:27 PM   #33
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I just looked again at the comments in this thread, including my own. I still recommend Nick look at the photos on this Forum taken with the 18-135. There certainly are a LOT of them. At the same time, Nick might want to take a look at the F 35-70. I think this is a very nice 'people' lens that also has close focus (macro) capabilities. And the generous overlap with the K-r's kit lenses at least for me, greatly reduced lens swaps.

Not that the K-r isn't a very good camera (I liked mine), but the other question that begs to be asked is if it worth the cost of putting higher end lenses on this body - at what point would Nick be justified to match a better body to higher end lenses?
08-14-2013, 09:27 PM   #34
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I too have this lens and use it when I travel overseas for family holidays. I normally use the DA*16-50 as my kit lens for work. It's a good lens and I believe that y copy is sharp throughout.

08-15-2013, 06:58 AM - 1 Like   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mr Spocko Quote
It's quite relevant really as they cover the same focal range.
Having used all 3 lenses, the Pentax is very weak v the Sony and Canon lenses.

I really expected better, it's a real shame.
Ditto on the 18-55mm too sadly comes last out of all the makers in terms of optics.
No reason to not compare lenses to other mounts. Plenty of people did a v with the 35mm f2.4 against the Nikkor 35mm f1.8
Best to just point out that actually many believe the Pentax 18-55 to be the best of the kit lens offerings. And that the assertion that both the Sony and Canon 18-135s are better than the Pentax is offered without even minimal supporting evidence, or even a claim of impartiality... it's a statement of preference, nothing more. Others (including your own) preferences may be different.
08-15-2013, 10:13 AM   #36
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Well I'm not able to do a head to head test as I don't have a Pentax 18-135mm any more. But I did try a few copies and either I got really unlucky or I simply wasn't happy with the lens. Same for the 18-55mm I've used multiple copies of all the 4 main makers kit lenses and whilst they're simple kit lenses, the 18-55mm Pentax was awful above 35mm, even stopped down it was poor on the edges, and effectively unusable at f5.6 unless you like the soft focus effect. It's fair to say all the kit lenses struggle with the newer higher resolution sensors.

There are plenty of reviews around, I've no brand bias I take it as I find, not overly fond of Canon or Sony as it happens, but when they do a decent lens or product I'll take a look at it.
I always suggest looking at the real world samples of a lens, not just review sites:

Full-size sample photos from Pentax 18-135mm F/3.5-5.6

Clearly the weaker points of this lens are obvious, the CA is very bad in some cases. The lens has no real bite either. Believe me when I borrowed a Sony body and 18-135mm lens I didn't expect a lot, but that lens smokes the Pentax it's stunningly sharp esp in the middle really cuts you down.
I'm no Sony fan, far from it but that's how it stacked up. The Canon is next best pretty good but doesn't have that magic contrast of the Sony.

It will be interesting to see how the new Nikon 18-140mm stacks up optics wise.
For me anyway the Pentax 18-135mm was a real let down.
08-15-2013, 11:13 AM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mr Spocko Quote
Well I'm not able to do a head to head test as I don't have a Pentax 18-135mm any more. But I did try a few copies and either I got really unlucky or I simply wasn't happy with the lens. Same for the 18-55mm I've used multiple copies of all the 4 main makers kit lenses and whilst they're simple kit lenses, the 18-55mm Pentax was awful above 35mm, even stopped down it was poor on the edges, and effectively unusable at f5.6 unless you like the soft focus effect. It's fair to say all the kit lenses struggle with the newer higher resolution sensors.

There are plenty of reviews around, I've no brand bias I take it as I find, not overly fond of Canon or Sony as it happens, but when they do a decent lens or product I'll take a look at it.
I always suggest looking at the real world samples of a lens, not just review sites:

Full-size sample photos from Pentax 18-135mm F/3.5-5.6

Clearly the weaker points of this lens are obvious, the CA is very bad in some cases. The lens has no real bite either. Believe me when I borrowed a Sony body and 18-135mm lens I didn't expect a lot, but that lens smokes the Pentax it's stunningly sharp esp in the middle really cuts you down.
I'm no Sony fan, far from it but that's how it stacked up. The Canon is next best pretty good but doesn't have that magic contrast of the Sony.

It will be interesting to see how the new Nikon 18-140mm stacks up optics wise.
For me anyway the Pentax 18-135mm was a real let down.
You tried "a few copies"? I really like mine but I will say it didn't wow me until I noticed it was de-centered which Pentax gladly fixed and quickly. It's happily on my camera all the time.
08-15-2013, 11:49 AM   #38
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Hmmmm....my relationship with this lens was and remains a happy one from day one, I do believe that the basic design is just about right for a lens of this type.

But hearing other's not-so-happy accounts sometimes makes me wonder what became of those golden, self-adheasive stickers "QC PASSED" that were so common on Japanese lenses back in the 80'ies. And I wonder what it would add to the cost of this type of ('affordable') lenses to get those stickers back?

This, of course, is a general, neither model- nor brand specific thought of mine.


Last edited by Stone G.; 08-15-2013 at 11:54 AM.
08-15-2013, 12:42 PM   #39
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I have used two copies of this lens (from my brother and dad) and both were pretty decent. No other sealed super zooms out there, as far as I know. Anyway, the only complaint I could see with it would be that the border sharpness tends not to be there past 70mm, but center sharpness still seemed good. However, I really think copy variation is all over the map with this lens. Looking at the copy Photozone reviewed, it was just terrible.
08-15-2013, 04:43 PM - 1 Like   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mr Spocko Quote
Well I'm not able to do a head to head test as I don't have a Pentax 18-135mm any more. But I did try a few copies and either I got really unlucky or I simply wasn't happy with the lens. Same for the 18-55mm I've used multiple copies of all the 4 main makers kit lenses and whilst they're simple kit lenses, the 18-55mm Pentax was awful above 35mm, even stopped down it was poor on the edges, and effectively unusable at f5.6 unless you like the soft focus effect. It's fair to say all the kit lenses struggle with the newer higher resolution sensors.

There are plenty of reviews around, I've no brand bias I take it as I find, not overly fond of Canon or Sony as it happens, but when they do a decent lens or product I'll take a look at it.
I always suggest looking at the real world samples of a lens, not just review sites:

Full-size sample photos from Pentax 18-135mm F/3.5-5.6

Clearly the weaker points of this lens are obvious, the CA is very bad in some cases. The lens has no real bite either. Believe me when I borrowed a Sony body and 18-135mm lens I didn't expect a lot, but that lens smokes the Pentax it's stunningly sharp esp in the middle really cuts you down.
I'm no Sony fan, far from it but that's how it stacked up. The Canon is next best pretty good but doesn't have that magic contrast of the Sony.

It will be interesting to see how the new Nikon 18-140mm stacks up optics wise.
For me anyway the Pentax 18-135mm was a real let down.
Any chance you could explain to us how your evaluations are done? I've looked at the photozone evaluations for the Canon and Pentax, (they didn't have the Sony) and I don't see where you are coming from. There are areas where the Pentax could be stronger than the Canon, especially for center sharpness. At 24 mm the Pentax is clearly the superior lens, in every aspect. So, basically, I have no idea what you're looking at or where you are coming from. If you could maybe post a couple links to images that would demonstrate your point, since that seems to be the way you are going. I see fill resolution Pentax 18-135 images all the time.. but a few images showing how the Canon is better. I agree with you with the CA, when CA rears it's head the images are pretty ugly. Not an issue. However that is typical of most super zooms, and it's not an issue all the time. I tend to look at lenses looking at what the best an accomplished photographer can accomplish with it. Not by it's weaknesses. You can't have everything in a lens. There are always trade-offs. Personally I like the trade offs Pentax made in the 18-135. it gives me prime quality from about 22-45 mm, and it can fill the gap until the 60mm where my DA* 60-250 can take over... both are WR, so that pretty much gives me 18-250 with enough overlap to keep lens or camera swapping to a minimum, at near prime quality over most of the range in two lenses.
I'm not sure Canon , Nikon Sony have a 1-2 punch anything like that at anywhere near the price.
08-17-2013, 04:04 PM   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mr Spocko Quote
Well I'm not able to do a head to head test as I don't have a Pentax 18-135mm any more. But I did try a few copies and either I got really unlucky or I simply wasn't happy with the lens. Same for the 18-55mm I've used multiple copies of all the 4 main makers kit lenses and whilst they're simple kit lenses, the 18-55mm Pentax was awful above 35mm, even stopped down it was poor on the edges, and effectively unusable at f5.6 unless you like the soft focus effect. It's fair to say all the kit lenses struggle with the newer higher resolution sensors.

There are plenty of reviews around, I've no brand bias I take it as I find, not overly fond of Canon or Sony as it happens, but when they do a decent lens or product I'll take a look at it.
I always suggest looking at the real world samples of a lens, not just review sites:

Full-size sample photos from Pentax 18-135mm F/3.5-5.6

Clearly the weaker points of this lens are obvious, the CA is very bad in some cases. The lens has no real bite either. Believe me when I borrowed a Sony body and 18-135mm lens I didn't expect a lot, but that lens smokes the Pentax it's stunningly sharp esp in the middle really cuts you down.
I'm no Sony fan, far from it but that's how it stacked up. The Canon is next best pretty good but doesn't have that magic contrast of the Sony.

It will be interesting to see how the new Nikon 18-140mm stacks up optics wise.
For me anyway the Pentax 18-135mm was a real let down.
QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Any chance you could explain to us how your evaluations are done? I've looked at the photozone evaluations for the Canon and Pentax, (they didn't have the Sony) and I don't see where you are coming from. There are areas where the Pentax could be stronger than the Canon, especially for center sharpness. At 24 mm the Pentax is clearly the superior lens, in every aspect. So, basically, I have no idea what you're looking at or where you are coming from. If you could maybe post a couple links to images that would demonstrate your point, since that seems to be the way you are going. I see fill resolution Pentax 18-135 images all the time.. but a few images showing how the Canon is better. I agree with you with the CA, when CA rears it's head the images are pretty ugly. Not an issue. However that is typical of most super zooms, and it's not an issue all the time. I tend to look at lenses looking at what the best an accomplished photographer can accomplish with it. Not by it's weaknesses. You can't have everything in a lens. There are always trade-offs. Personally I like the trade offs Pentax made in the 18-135. it gives me prime quality from about 22-45 mm, and it can fill the gap until the 60mm where my DA* 60-250 can take over... both are WR, so that pretty much gives me 18-250 with enough overlap to keep lens or camera swapping to a minimum, at near prime quality over most of the range in two lenses.
I'm not sure Canon , Nikon Sony have a 1-2 punch anything like that at anywhere near the price.
Still waiting.....
08-17-2013, 07:12 PM   #42
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I haven't experienced too much softness with my 18-135, where at f/5.6-8 its really good, and my 18-55 did pretty good too. Maybe his had FF/BF issues?
08-29-2013, 06:23 AM   #43
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Field use it what I go on. I see a poster on DPR is comparing the Sony v the Pentax lens, and maybe he'd like to shoot at different focal lengths and not a woven puppet on a chair, because the copies I had of the Pentax were poor tele end, and nothing to shout about wide end either.
08-29-2013, 07:25 AM   #44
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Check the samples we've posted on here. Mine is pretty sharp and renders pretty nicely.
08-29-2013, 02:36 PM   #45
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As the song goes... trolling, trolling, trolling - Walleye! Fish 'em up, eat 'em up. Walleye!

I think we are still waiting for a decent response to normhead's inquiry.
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