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03-12-2013, 07:06 PM   #1
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K-01 and Sigma 8-16mm

Hi! I'm new here, but I've been stalking for quite a bit. I just got my new K-01 (w/ 40mm) a few days ago. I've been wanting one for months but was waiting to see if the price would drop even more, but ended up grabbing it once I heard it was discontinued!

So I couldn't find a thread about the K-01 with 8-16mm. I have seen a few posts that there are issues with focusing with this pair. I'm wondering how bad it is and if there are any other issues. I'm mainly wanting a super wide for landscape/architecture so autofocus isn't a huge concern for me.

My main camera is a Pansonic Gh2 and I have been eyeing the 7-14mm for quite some time. The Olympus 12mm has been my main landscape lens and I love it, but I would like to go wider. After getting the K-01 and being blown away by the quality of photos it seems a bit absurd to so much on the 7-14mm when there are less expensive and probably just as good or better options for Pentax.

So what do you guys think? Anyone using this combo? Thanks for the help, this forum has been a great resource.

03-12-2013, 09:09 PM   #2
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IQ from this combo is great. AF speed is very fast.
My only nitpicking is the weight balance. The 8-16 is a pretty big lens.
03-13-2013, 01:59 AM   #3
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I love the 8-16mm lens. Although I agree with kesong that it's pretty heavy hanging from the front of the K-01 it's not the end of the world. I actually enjoy the Sigma 14mm f/2.8 even more than the 8-16mm and the 14mm f/2.8 is a heavier lens.

I also use the OM-D E-M5 with the Olympus 12mm f/2 ... the Olympus lens is sharper from edge to edge than either the Sigma 8-16mm or the 14mm but the angle of view from the Sigma lenses (~114 degrees for both) is wider than the 12mm (~84 degrees) and so the sigmas give you a more "dramatic" (and distorted) wide angle perspective.

If you want the widest FOV possible then the Sigma 8-16mm is the way to go and it's considerably less expensive than the Panasonic 7-14mm. Also the K-01's image sensor is so much nicer in comparison to the GH2 that it's probably silly to buy the 7-14mm lens unless you really like the experience of shooting with the GH2 more. Granted, that would be fair (there are times when I like using the OM-D more than my K-01) but from the viewpoint of wide angle image quality the 8-16mm on the K-01 is probably the best choice.
03-13-2013, 02:32 AM   #4
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make no mistake the Sigma 8-16mm f/4.5-5.6 ASPH is a BIG lens, especially when compared to the diminutive DA15mm f/4 ED ASPH Limited:


Apart from providing better image quality in the corners the sigma 8-16mm lens isn't anywhere near as versatile as the the DA15 is. In my mind the DA15 lens that offers greater versatility, high flare tolerance, jewel-like construction, small size and the 49mm filter thread should never be overlooked. Also I find that the 8mm setting on my sigma lens doesn't get used all that much, I prefer to stick around the 10-14mm range because the wider a lens gets the harder it is to make a strong composition. There are filters that you can get for the sigma 8-16mm - just be prepared to part with $600, a high quality 49mm circular polariser for the DA15mm f/4 shouldn't set you back more than $70~80 and ND filters are also generally cheaper.

Also I use the Sigma 8-16mm on a K5IIs and it is unbalanced enough as it is - on the K-01 it would be cumbersome to say the least.


Last edited by Digitalis; 03-13-2013 at 03:02 AM.
03-13-2013, 02:49 AM   #5
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Also keep an eye on the upcoming Samyang 10mm, if you aren't in a hurry to get something.
03-13-2013, 08:01 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by JJJPhoto Quote
I love the 8-16mm lens. Although I agree with kesong that it's pretty heavy hanging from the front of the K-01 it's not the end of the world. I actually enjoy the Sigma 14mm f/2.8 even more than the 8-16mm and the 14mm f/2.8 is a heavier lens.

I also use the OM-D E-M5 with the Olympus 12mm f/2 ... the Olympus lens is sharper from edge to edge than either the Sigma 8-16mm or the 14mm but the angle of view from the Sigma lenses (~114 degrees for both) is wider than the 12mm (~84 degrees) and so the sigmas give you a more "dramatic" (and distorted) wide angle perspective.

If you want the widest FOV possible then the Sigma 8-16mm is the way to go and it's considerably less expensive than the Panasonic 7-14mm. Also the K-01's image sensor is so much nicer in comparison to the GH2 that it's probably silly to buy the 7-14mm lens unless you really like the experience of shooting with the GH2 more. Granted, that would be fair (there are times when I like using the OM-D more than my K-01) but from the viewpoint of wide angle image quality the 8-16mm on the K-01 is probably the best choice.
This is very helpful. Yeah, the Gh2 I originally bought 99% for video, but over the time I've had it that percentage has drastically changed. Especially after getting the 12mm and 45mm, which I barely ever leave home without.

The size/weight shouldn't be a huge problem for me (I hope) since it will mainly stay on my tripod. While I've never owned a super-wide, I imagine it's the type of lens that would benefit from spending a few minutes setting up and composing things and not for street photography.
03-13-2013, 08:12 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
Apart from providing better image quality in the corners the sigma 8-16mm lens isn't anywhere near as versatile as the the DA15 is. In my mind the DA15 lens that offers greater versatility, high flare tolerance, jewel-like construction, small size and the 49mm filter thread should never be overlooked. Also I find that the 8mm setting on my sigma lens doesn't get used all that much, I prefer to stick around the 10-14mm range because the wider a lens gets the harder it is to make a strong composition. There are filters that you can get for the sigma 8-16mm - just be prepared to part with $600, a high quality 49mm circular polariser for the DA15mm f/4 shouldn't set you back more than $70~80 and ND filters are also generally cheaper.

Also I use the Sigma 8-16mm on a K5IIs and it is unbalanced enough as it is - on the K-01 it would be cumbersome to say the least.
I just found a pic of the 8-16mm mounted on a k-01 and it is... very big.

As for the DA15, I really want something much wider. The Sigma 14mm or Pentax 15mm would just be too close to what I already have with the Olympus 12mm on m4/3! I don't really care much for filters, I only really use them for daytime timelapses or video, which I can do on my GH2 perfectly fine

I am worried about the size, but I only really have the funds to get one really good landscape lens. That and once I find a decent M42 adapter for my few Takumars, it should make for a pretty sweet setup.

The new Samyang 10mm could be perfect.. but could be.. There doesn't seem to be any definite information about it yet and I hate waiting so I'm going to try not to consider it until it comes out.
03-13-2013, 09:04 PM   #8
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The Sigma 8-16 is one of my most often used lenses with the K-01. I have found that autofocus gets things close and is fast, but it is almost never "spot on". I think this could just be the nature of an ultrawide angle. I had sold my previous Pentax DSLR, so I don't know how much better or worse it is with a DSLR like the K5.

Can anyone who has a K5, a K01 as well as the sigma 8-16 comment on the difference in focusing between the K5 and the K01?

03-13-2013, 09:16 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by brettgaddy Quote
While I've never owned a super-wide, I imagine it's the type of lens that would benefit from spending a few minutes setting up and composing things and not for street photography.
You are correct, but I also feel like it's a common mistake to pigeonhole super-wide lenses exclusively for landscapes. Yes, the perspective can help you capture some grand vistas, but sometimes those extreme wide angle views allow you to add drama or simply a creative angle to your images.

Sometimes I have fun getting close to my kids with the Sigma 14mm f/2.8:




The other reason I like using the 14mm -- even though I've owned wider and sharper lenses -- is the f/2.8 aperture. Yes, if you're shooting landscapes you want more DOF, but these super-wide lenses allow you to do some very creative background blur while still capturing the feel of the surroundings. This next shot isn't mine but it illustrates my point perfectly:
First Day of Summer Break: Well Spent!-10/52 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Long story short ... it's almost a sin to only use a super-wide for landscapes.
03-13-2013, 09:42 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by JJJPhoto Quote
Long story short ... it's almost a sin to only use a super-wide for landscapes.
That is very true. My favorite lens for dog photography has to be my Olympus 12mm f2.0 (which has a min. focus as 20cm). Looks like the minimum focus distance on the 8-16mm is 24cm, that should be a crazy perspective I can't wait to mess around with.

But of course at f4.5 it won't be quite the same.
03-14-2013, 01:10 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by brettgaddy Quote
I don't really care much for filters, I only really use them for daytime timelapses(sic) or video....I am worried about the size, but I only really have the funds to get one really good landscape lens.
Most landscape photographs benefit from the use of polarisers or ND filters, an in that case the DA15 or a sigma 10-20 f/3.5* might be a better choice - though the sigma lens uses rather expensive 82mm filters, so the DA15mm f/4 with its small 49mm filter thread is certainly a winner there. Also bear in mind for time lapse photography flare can be a very difficult issue to predict, so I think it would be prudent to get a lens with the best flare tolerance possible and that is an area where the DA15 wins hands down.

the DA15mm f/4 can produce some very interesting bokeh:


Pentax K-7 - Pentax DA15mm f/4 ED ASPH Limited - 1/640th f/5.6 ISO 100

Also a demonstration of the DA15's flare resistance:

Pentax K7 - Pentax DA15mm f/4 ED ASPH Limited - 1/60th f/11 ISO 100



* the f/4.5-5.6 version of the 10-20 is worth a look but it uses large 77mm filters - so you don't gain much when filters are concerned.

Last edited by Digitalis; 03-14-2013 at 01:24 AM.
03-14-2013, 05:35 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Crust Quote
Can anyone who has a K5, a K01 as well as the sigma 8-16 comment on the difference in focusing between the K5 and the K01
Very little difference between the two cameras mentioned in terms of focusing ability and speed.
03-14-2013, 08:19 AM   #13
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Not shot with the K-01, but the Sigma 8-16mm is a great lens.

I won't think you would be too hindered by the lack of polarizing filter, I find it generally has the coatings to provide for an excellent set of colours:







I think you would find the sigma and the K-01 an excellent combo.
03-14-2013, 08:42 AM   #14
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Some great shots by everyone!
03-14-2013, 07:41 PM   #15
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Can someone do me a favor? Can you post a photo with the Sigma 8-16 at 16 mm wide open outside in a well lit location focused on an object around 6 feet away? Can you please post it as-is from the camera (jpeg mode default) with no sharpening, etc?

Thank you so much.
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