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11-27-2013, 10:34 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
Ron, I cannot agree with you. 16-50 might not be a perfect lens, but given Anre's requirement on getting weathersealed camera, there are not that many choices. In my opinion, 18-135 optical quality is not acceptable. Once I bought it and decided to return after I watched the first shots I took with this lens. 16-50 plays in a different league, it has way superior optical quality (than 18-135), and it is a fast zoom unlike 18-135. It will be a good companion in both harsh weather and dim museum rooms. And all after all, there is also 18-55 WR, which is very inexpensive. I don't think it will be optically any worse than 18-135, but it's much cheaper thus easy to upgrade in future.

11-27-2013, 10:43 AM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
People either seem to love or hate that DA 16-50. If I had the money I'd buy one, just to give it a go. I tried one out at the Pentax Booth at Henry's EXPOsure and analyzed the images after, and it just didn't impress me. Ended up going with the Tamron 17-50 and Sigma 8-16. But so many people really like it, I have to think there must be something about it.
I found the lens had its flaws - distortion and vignetting and soft corners - but also found that DxO fixes all that for me without my input, and the lens has that Pentax cachet to its images. It's fast for a zoom, its focal length range is close to our FA 24-90 (24-75) which is the lens my wife has welded to our MZ-S.

In film days I had a darkroom for a while, and did not enjoy that end of things at all. I don't enjoy post processing, either. DxO works while I have a couple of Alexander Keith's India Pale Ale after a hard day schlepping around with the 40 pound backpack. Works for me. There's a couple of trial images on my Flickr site that show what DxO can do for the 16-50.
11-27-2013, 10:55 AM   #33
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Lots of great ideas already.

As someone who shoots in museums (and in the collections behind the scenes) I'd recommend fast and definitely wider than 50mm for any display or artifact shooting. Getting far enough away to fit in whole displays or objects can be tricky in some cases. The biggest problem I find tends to be edge to edge sharpness when photographing artifacts (few lenses can deliver this wide open in any mount). The other issue is getting a deep enough depth of field for certain things and wider lenses also offer more there. The 31 1.9 is about the best. The new 1.8 zoom Sigma is also a great recommendation and the extra angle of view would be a real benefit to me (I'm not sure yet about its edge to edge sharpness through the range though). Stopping down a fast wide lens tends to get better edge to edge sharpness at a wider aperture than a slower lens. I sometimes use a Sigma 30 1.4, but for artifacts that fill the frame I need to stop it down to 2 or so to get the edges sharpened up enough. I will seriously consider the Sigma 1.8 zoom when it is in Pentax mount. It might solve a lot of problems in one package.

For mostly people in the museum the Sigma 30 1.4 is ideal for smaller rooms. There are loads of examples of excellent candids taken with this lens on the internet. It produces consistently pleasing results for that. For medium sized rooms a 50 1.4 (I use FA -- often a bargain used these days) is a terrific length to isolate heads and shoulders/waist-up of a few people in a crowd without being too close. I don't find 2.8 fast enough (unless I am doing flash/group shots with large depth of field which isn't so much my thing), but that's me, my shooting style, and the look I like.
11-27-2013, 11:19 AM - 1 Like   #34

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to be honest, the OP posted that he is new to the "realm" of dslr.
Thats why i plead for a good basic & not too expensive setup, in order for him to learn where his main interests are.

To be honest, it seems 18-135 + DA35 2.4 ,a polarizer and he'll be able to do what he wants...
There is no way a "first time dslr user" can choose out of all high quality glass what he needs.

Same for the body, but that is his call. But as some point out, nothing wrong with a K50 either...

11-27-2013, 11:28 AM   #35
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Here's another opinion for you to consider. You have two main scenarios - first: indoors, artifacts, displays, architecture, etc. I would use the DA 21mm LTD. Discreet in size, sharp, quick, reasonably close-focusing and what I find is a nice focal length for that kind of photography. Secondly, outdoors, the two best weather-sealed options are the DA* 16-50mm f2.8 zoom and the brand new 20-40mm LTD. Both are pricey, but to stay on budget a less expensive body like the K-5ii, K-50, etc. will help there while still providing an excellent imaging sensor. As has been stated earlier in this thread, the 16-50 is not optically spectacular (I have one and I see this, too) so if the new LTD zoom is better in this regard, I'd go with that. If I was to buy one lens to start with it would be the DA 21, but that's just me. I just like mine sooo much.

I feel the same way about going with good gear right from the start. I hate seeing lenses end up on the shelf gathering dust and growing fungus because I was never happy with them. I enjoyed my superb lenses on my K10D and still love using them on my K-3.
11-27-2013, 11:45 AM   #36
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I don't know about zooms and cheaper slower primes as the best place to start. I started many years ago in film and the best place to start was considered a fast prime 50mm (at least 1.8 but better 1.4). I stand by that (a 30 now in APSC) since it is how I learned and what I still love. But yes, an 18-135 plus I would say a Sigma 30 1.4 would fill almost all the immediate needs. Fast, full range, and not too expensive.
11-27-2013, 12:24 PM - 1 Like   #37
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Increasing your budget would be to purchase cheaper:

Foto Looman - Productgroepen

A good shop, I can contact the owner for you. He also delivered my K-3 Silver.

To get closer to your budget:
K-3 = 1299 euro | K-5 II = 725 euro | K-30 with 18-135mm is 729 euro | K-30 with 18-55mm is 529 euro

Not in shop, but for order:
20-40mm = 879 euro | 50-135mm = 909 euro

Maybe some discount for the lot of body with lenses.
11-27-2013, 12:32 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by psychdoc Quote
Spend more money on lenses rather than the camera.

Camera: Get the K5 or K5ii or iis instead and use the savings to get better lenses.
Lens: for travel-18-135
Lens: for museums-you need a lens that will shoot well in low light and wide; get the Tamron 17-50 if you need a zoom [its sharper than the pentax 16-50 but noisier] or if you prefer prime lenses there are at least three 35mm lenses by pentax that are fast. If you have money left over, the Pentax 50-135 is outstanding as a telephoto lens and its relatively small.
+1 on that.
Bodies come and go but (good) lenses stay. It`s the glass that makes the body shine, not the other way around.
And, since you are new to DSLR you won`t be running into the limits of the K5 (II) soon

11-27-2013, 12:40 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Byrd-2020:
QuoteOriginally posted by normhead:
Everyone has their say.. we are so good at spending other people's money. My advice would be K-5 IIs, 18-135 for outdoors , and Tamron 17-50 for your indoor work. If you want a longer lens later go for a Sigma or Tamron 70-200 2.8, or DA*60250. I'm not sure what you shoot in the museum, but if you want macro get a Tamron 90 macro. Great for close up detail. Those are all lenses that will give you great results on a budget. (If you don't include the DA*60-250, definitely not a budget lens.) My choice for outdoors is DA 18-135 WR and DA*60-250 ƒ4 WR. A lot more range than the 16-50 and 50-135, for the most part better IQ and probably cheaper. Indoors I prefer the Tamron 17-50 to the DA* 16-50, and it's less than half the price.
I agree with Normhead. Save money on the body. The K-5iis will be very close in performance to the K-3. The 18-135 is a great outdoor lens. If you prefer zooms to primes, the Tamron 17-50 is also a good choice, as is the macro. If you need low-light performance, though, you might want to look at one of Sigma's f1.4 offerings. I would probably go with the 18-135 combined with the Sigma 50mm f1.4. Just a thought.
I agree with both these posters. Get a K-5IIs with the 18-135mm WR lens. Add to it the DA 50mm f1.8 and you'll be well set up. Since this is your own first DSLR then going for the K-5IIs should not hold you back in any way and should fill your needs for at least a few years.

If you've already tried the K-5IIs and truly prefer the K-3, then I suggest a K-3 with the 18-135mm WR and the 50mm f1.8.

EDIT: Or if the longer focal length is an issue for your low-light needs, look at the DA 35mm f2.4 instead of the DA 50mm f1.8.

Last edited by kcmadr; 11-27-2013 at 12:49 PM.
11-27-2013, 12:50 PM   #40
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You don't need to start with a K-3. Buy a K-5II with a DA 18-135mm and a FA 50 f1.7 (for low light and DOF control), and a Metz 50 flash. You'll be on budget with great performance potential.
11-27-2013, 12:54 PM - 1 Like   #41
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How about this: K5IIs (to save money for lenses) + Sigma 18-35 f/1.8 + Pentax 50-135 f/2.8.

I have neither lens, but by all accounts each is superb. The Sigma would take care of all your museum needs, the Pentax is weather-sealed (for rainy days outside) and together you have the combined 18-135mm range so most of your landscape needs would be covered - with optics that are (from what I've heard) vastly superior to the Pentax 18-135. You lose portability, because both of these lenses are fairly large and heavier than the Pentax 18-135.

The Sigma is not yet available for the Pentax mount, but should be soon.

I don't know if this combo falls within your budget, but you can certainly save some money by purchasing the 50-135 used (Caveat - watch out for SDM failure).
11-27-2013, 03:02 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arne Bo Quote
At the museum it is usually forbidden to use any flash within the exhibitions. So a lens with good low light qualities would be nice.
None of the kit/bundle options will address this need.

If you can afford the Sigma 18-35/1.8, it would be a great choice. Not available yet, though, and sometimes there can be unforeseen delays.

Another recommendation that has been made that I can fully support is the Sigma 28/1.8 EX DG Macro. It is "fast" (i.e., bright = good for low light photography) and very versatile because of its close focusing ability. The latter means in a museum you can get really up close to a subject and fill the frame with it. Most lenses have a minimal focusing distance that will prevent you from getting close enough for smaller subjects. Please read my review of the Sigma 28/1.8 EX DG Macro in which I go into further detail and also refer to the fact that this a great so called "normal" lens on an APS-C camera.

Regarding the camera body, I support your tendency to go for the best immediately, if you intend to keep the body for as long as possible. If you already know that you will replace it with the latest and greatest soon then for now I would go for a K-5 II as the latter would allow you to get better lenses straight away. Whatever you do, don't go back too far down the history. I recommend to stay away from anything older then the K-30. Only starting with the K-30 (hence including K-5 II, K-5 IIs, K-50, K-3), Pentax managed to combine great sensor performance with an AF system that is accurate under any lighting situation and works up to -1 EV or even -3 EV (depends on the model). You don't want to deal with any of the inferior AF systems that were used before, in particular not if you are planning to shoot in dim artificial light.

QuoteOriginally posted by Arne Bo Quote
I plan to buy lightroom to learn working with raw.
Very good choice.

You may curse it every now and then because Adobe has poor QC and their programming is lacking at times, but overall it is a very good solution and I'm not aware of anything better.
11-27-2013, 04:47 PM   #43
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For landscape & indoor museum photos I don't see any reason at all to buy a K-3 over a K-5IIs. The K-3 makes sense for sports, or video, or tethering, none of which you've mentioned.

For lenses I like a previous suggestion of the Sigma 18-35 f/1.8 and the DA*50-135. The DA18-135 WR is a very good travel/outdoor lens but not something for indoors without flash.
11-28-2013, 01:22 AM   #44
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Thank you all very much for the advice. I have to think hard on my budget and all the different possibilities you mentioned.
We donīt have a Black Friday in Germany, but i have to take a close look if i can buy something in the US with my Credit Card. There are some really nice discounts.
Travel & Outdoor Pictures will be my main focus, but a nice lens for work would be nice as well. You gave me a lot options that i have to check out. Most Limited will be out of my budget, but i have to have a word with Santa in the days coming.
11-28-2013, 01:49 AM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arne Bo Quote
Thank you all very much for the advice. I have to think hard on my budget and all the different possibilities you mentioned.
We donīt have a Black Friday in Germany, but i have to take a close look if i can buy something in the US with my Credit Card. There are some really nice discounts.
Travel & Outdoor Pictures will be my main focus, but a nice lens for work would be nice as well. You gave me a lot options that i have to check out. Most Limited will be out of my budget, but i have to have a word with Santa in the days coming.
But don't forget that (legally) you have to pay an "Einfuhrumsatzsteuer" (import VAT) of 19%. Often this eats up a lot of the price advantage. And you might have to go through expensive and cumbersome procedures if anything is wrong with your item. For me, it needs very, very good deals to justify buying overseas.

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