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12-12-2012, 04:56 AM   #1
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Pentax Q lens recommendations

Hi all, first time poster and new Pentax Q owner (bought on sale for $200AUD in Aus).

From research conducted, it appears that many different lenses and mounts are available to be used on the Q....

These including:
Macro 4/3
T2 / M / D / K / F / mounts
m42
leica m / 39mm / R lenses

As Iím only recently getting into the Q and photography in general, Iím looking for the best bang for buck and cheapest way of increasing my Q camera kit (more lenses). Some posts and threads mention good prices on C-mount (cctv) and m42 lenses that work well with the Q via mounts with prices <$100 and some for under $20!
Iím trying to go this route as some prices for official Pentax lenses cost as much as what I paid for the camera, which I am trying to avoid.

Any recommendations for which mounts are more affordable, lens brands to research (m42, c-mount etc), focal lengths to get me started, zoom lens options (similar to the offical Pentax 5-15mm), where to look to buy these from (Iíve used b&h in the past who ship to Australia but noticed that Ebay seems to have a lot of options), would be greatly appreciated.

Regards,
Matthew

12-12-2012, 11:21 AM   #2
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Welcome Matthew!

I won't provide a pedantic response (as sadly, that's already been done), but rather actually answer your question about which lenses are most affordable. In general, those would be "C-mount." (Avoid CS-mount, since they generally won't fit unless you are handy at hacking them!)

The C-Q adapter is about $10 on eBay, and the lenses can be had, as you mention, for less than $20 sometimes. They won't be spectacular in quality, but lots of fun, and some of them offer a "look" you can't get with the 01 prime: "hazy soft-focus" for any that are f/1.2 or lower, "fisheye" for most that are under 6mm, and "affordable super-tele" for cctv lenses like a 12-75mm (that's a 66-400mm lens on the Q). And, yes, eBay is where you'll find these! Search this forum and you'll find posts by people who have experience with lots of different c-mounts.

Enjoy your Q and photography!

Last edited by panoguy; 12-12-2012 at 11:54 AM.
12-12-2012, 12:46 PM   #3
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Hi Matthew,

Welcome!

Your question is really a tough one. The problem is that just about every mount has their gems and dogs -- and the only answer is to do the research so you can take advantage of the gems and avoid the dogs.

You first have to determine what and how you want to shoot, and choose lenses that will meet your needs. The vast majority of 35mm SLR lenses will be telephoto, ultra tele, or super tele on the Q because of the extreme 5.58x "crop" factor (8.5mm is "normal" for the Q, but an ultra ultra wide on APS-C or 35mm, and very unusual -- and certainly not cheap).

I'd suggest that you explore local sources first, since in-person you can examine the lenses before you commit to purchasing them. If you have B&M camera stores in your area, this would be a good place to start. Pawn shops, resale stores (Goodwill and such), and especially camera shows and swap meets can also be sources. Just visit and look around and ask questions. You'll find which mount types are the most commonly available and get a good idea of pricing.

Do the research!!! There is an abundance of information on lenses on the 'net. It can be very specific, so you need to be very detail-oriented to really make the best of the information that's out there. A good example of how specifics can make a difference is to look at the Vivitar Series One 70-210 zooms. There were, IIRC, 5 different variations, and 3 manufacturers, and they range from mediocre to excellent optically depending on the variation that you get. This is pretty much the extreme though, and in OEM lenses (offered by the camera mfgs), there are fewer variations, and you can usually get a good idea of the optical quality of a given lens from the user comments posted on various sites.

Personally, I shoot Pentax DSLRs, so the choice is pretty simple -- K mount lenses, so I can use them with my DSLRs. I already have a pretty extensive range of lenses since I've been acquiring them over the past 7-8 years. If you may consider getting a DSLR kit in the future, this might be a consideration for you -- get lenses that will be compatible with the DSLR that you'd most likely choose. Be aware that with all of the other brands (Canon, Nikon, Sony [Minolta], Olympus), the older manual focus lenses might not be compatible (might not control aperture, might not meter, or might not even mount) with (at least some of) the DSLR bodies so this might be another area to research. With Pentax, it's easier because Pentax DSLRs will be able to use just about any lens that was made to fit any of their cameras, past and present (sometimes an adapter is needed though).

In the Q system lenses, I can wholeheartedly recommend the 01 prime, the 06 tele zoom, and the 03 Fisheye -- all top quality lenses IMO. The 02 wide-tele zoom is only competent IMO, and right now, the best alternative if you want to shoot wider than the "normal" (captures a scene pretty much as you see it) 01 prime.

Congrats on getting a Q -- you are obviously a sensible person . Have fun with your new camera. . .

Scott
12-12-2012, 04:34 PM   #4
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I recently purchased a Q to F-Mount adapter for 20 USD on Amazon. I like it although I did have a few F-Mount lenses to use before I purchased it. I don't think I would have been happy with the results if I had to spend money on all the lenses. I suggest doing a little browsing on the forums here and see what other results people are getting. I recently just posted a thread with my current set up. I have heard that my 200mm lens is a "dog". I don't really mind because I wouldn't dish out so much cash for a telephoto lens anyway. It gets a pretty good result at the cost of 20 dollars. So, this really comes down to what you want.

Here is the thread I mentioned earlier: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-q/208068-q-w-f-mount-adapter-photos.html

12-14-2012, 08:08 AM   #5
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A related question.... Is it really necessary to buy the Pentax Q-K adapter? It's $250 while the Fotodiox is around $25 and both have the aperture ring. What is the difference between the two, and is it compelling enough to spend the extra 200+ on it? I would think not but want to get the best bang for the buck. I think the 3rd party adapter also has a tripod ring? I could see that being important for a big lens on a tiny body.

Has the new firmware improved focusing aid for these "manual" lenses?
12-14-2012, 09:01 AM   #6
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Ok, so I just read the thread comparing the two adapters, and I see no compelling reason to spend $250 on an adapter when the whole camera/lens was $250 :-)

Putting a K-mount lens on the Q would be for fun anyway, as extreme tele is not usually something I find I need that often. It will be fun to play around and if I get serious with macro I can always upgrade.
12-14-2012, 10:08 AM   #7
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I have the 3rd party adapter with aperture ring and it is fun to play with K lenses. For me the only down side of the non Pentax adapter is the camera electronic shutter will sometimes distort my image, if I move the camera quickly or have a fast subject motion on a lower shutter speed. Some here refereed to as the jello effect. It's something I only see in a few of my images. I have yet to use flash on an adapted but I hear the flash sync on an adapter without built in shutter sucks, but I have no reason to use an adapted lens with flash.

Hans

Last edited by hnikesch; 12-14-2012 at 12:46 PM.
12-15-2012, 07:10 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by hnikesch Quote
I have the 3rd party adapter with aperture ring and it is fun to play with K lenses. For me the only down side of the non Pentax adapter is the camera electronic shutter will sometimes distort my image, if I move the camera quickly or have a fast subject motion on a lower shutter speed. Some here refereed to as the jello effect. It's something I only see in a few of my images. I have yet to use flash on an adapted but I hear the flash sync on an adapter without built in shutter sucks, but I have no reason to use an adapted lens with flash.

Hans
Is this the effect you are talking about? I have seen it in like 1 out of every 30-40 shots I have taken.



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