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05-10-2016, 08:05 PM - 1 Like   #1
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Bargain lenses for K-1?

Now that I have the K-1, I don't have a whole lot of money left in my budget for lenses. I'd love to get the 15-30 but just can't afford anything near that expensive. I've read and seen good things about the D FA 28-105 and will probably get that as my walkaround lens. But I've got obvious holes in my FF collection between 100-300mm.

So can anyone recommend bargain zooms or primes that have really good IQ? I'm especially interested in firsthand experiences of people who have tried these lenses on the K-1.

Thanks!


Last edited by loco; 05-10-2016 at 08:30 PM. Reason: clarification
05-10-2016, 08:13 PM   #2
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I would think a look through the F and FA lens database would give you some suggestions. The ratings are a good indication. I have a number of those I plan to test on the k-1.
In particular the F 70-210 and the FA 100-300 should be fine though slow.

Any of the primes will be good.

And there is also the Samyang line though they are all manual focus.

---------- Post added 05-10-16 at 08:16 PM ----------

I really am looking forward to a da*60-250 replacement. I don't want or need f/2.8 but a really good f/4 similar to the 60-250 would be on my buy list.
05-10-2016, 08:28 PM   #3
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Thanks jatrax. I've looked through the reviews and database, but I guess I am hoping for some firsthand experiences with the K-1. I've edited my original post to reflect that.
05-10-2016, 08:34 PM - 1 Like   #4
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I'm not sure what you mean by D 28-105, but there are three different FA lenses in that range. The original, 28-105 f4-5.6 had power zoom and, in the day (we are talking late 1990's), was known as one of Pentax's golden zooms. But it is quite heavy (+500g), thanks to the power zoom. Version 2 was made by Tamron actually, lighter (300g), but the optical quality didn't match the first. The final lens an f3.2-5.6 is the lightest of the three (250g). I really liked this lens, found it to be an excellent performer until mine developed focus problems. I did use the lens on a K10D and never had any IQ issues with it up until the focus issue started to happen. I accidentally got the silver version, was not a fan of the color.

05-10-2016, 08:50 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by stemked Quote
I'm not sure what you mean by D 28-105, but there are three different FA lenses in that range. The original, 28-105 f4-5.6 had power zoom and, in the day (we are talking late 1990's), was known as one of Pentax's golden zooms. But it is quite heavy (+500g), thanks to the power zoom. Version 2 was made by Tamron actually, lighter (300g), but the optical quality didn't match the first. The final lens an f3.2-5.6 is the lightest of the three (250g). I really liked this lens, found it to be an excellent performer until mine developed focus problems. I did use the lens on a K10D and never had any IQ issues with it up until the focus issue started to happen. I accidentally got the silver version, was not a fan of the color.
You are not aware that the K-1 was released with a new DFA 28-105mm lens?
05-10-2016, 08:51 PM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by loco Quote
Thanks jatrax. I've looked through the reviews and database, but I guess I am hoping for some firsthand experiences with the K-1. I've edited my original post to reflect that.
I have all of the F zooms and a number of FA ones and plan to do a good test of them soon so that might be helpful.

In the meantime, based on my limited testing I believe you can use the database ratings with some confidence. If the lens was good on film it will perform well on the k-1. In general anyway.

More next week when I have time to test.
05-10-2016, 09:00 PM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by loco Quote
Now that I have the K-1, I don't have a whole lot of money left in my budget for lenses. I'd love to get the 15-30 but just can't afford anything near that expensive. I've read and seen good things about the D FA 28-105 and will probably get that as my walkaround lens. But I've got obvious holes in my FF collection between 100-300mm.

So can anyone recommend bargain zooms or primes that have really good IQ? I'm especially interested in firsthand experiences of people who have tried these lenses on the K-1.

Thanks!
The D FA 28-105mm is definitely the way to go for your walkaround lens. It's waaaay better than any legacy budget zoom I've tested so far (including the FA 28-105mm F4-5.6).

The FA 50mm is good, as is the DA 50mm if you don't mind a hint of vignetting and softer corners.

As a telephoto zoom, the DA* 60-250mm works surprisingly well in FF mode.

I'd also recommend the D FA 100mm as a dual-purpose telephoto/macro lens.

I would not recommend the FA 80-320mm or 100-300mm, as they're soft and exhibit heavy vignetting. Another lens I've found to be disappointing is the FA 20mm F2.8. Could be my copy, but it was considerably softer than the DA 12-24mm at 20mm.

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05-10-2016, 09:41 PM - 3 Likes   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
I would not recommend the FA 80-320mm
I'm not a qualified person to judge telephoto zoom sharpness as I've never had a higher quality telephoto zoom to compare with. I do have an FA80-320 and just took it to my son's baseball game with the K-1 on Saturday and it got the job done just fine... No vignetting at all and looks better than it did on K-3 (though without the same reach of course).

Maybe I am not a good judge of sharpness at all because my FA20 does just fine for me too, though I haven't shot it outside the house on the K1 yet. Does just fine on K3 though to my aging eyes... Maybe it's soft and I just don't know it...


(at F8 hand-held)

05-10-2016, 09:43 PM - 1 Like   #9
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I can confirm from my film shooting days that the 80-320 is at best a middling performer on FF - on APSC it was a bit more interesting since the edges are all chopped off where most of the problems were.
05-10-2016, 09:45 PM - 1 Like   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
The D FA 28-105mm is definitely the way to go for your walkaround lens. It's waaaay better than any legacy budget zoom I've tested so far (including the FA 28-105mm F4-5.6).

The FA 50mm is good, as is the DA 50mm if you don't mind a hint of vignetting and softer corners.

As a telephoto zoom, the DA* 60-250mm works surprisingly well in FF mode.

I'd also recommend the D FA 100mm as a dual-purpose telephoto/macro lens.
I hate to post "me too!" messages, but I couldn't agree more. Some of the official sample photos released by Pentax are shot with the D FA 28-105mm, and it looks fantastic (all things considered).

The Tamron SP AF 70-200/2.8 can be had really cheaply (I got mine used on eBay for about $400 or so), and is quite good in terms of sharpness (though bokeh is a bit nervous).

The Tamron 90/2.8 macro hovers around in the sub-$200 range on eBay now and then -- it's very sharp.

There's obviously a ton of old Pentax 300/4 and 300/4.5 manual-focus lenses on eBay. Most people find these acceptably sharp on APS-C bodies, so they should definitely be sharp enough on full-frame.

I know I sound like a broken record, but one beautiful thing about moving from a 24 MP APS-C camera to a 36 MP FF camera is that the larger pixel size will be a lot less taxing on older lenses; any lens that you'd consider center-sharp on a 24 megapixel APS-C camera should appear even sharper in the center on 36 megapixel FF. I'm obviously not saying anything about vignetting or corner sharpness; those vary widely based on the lens design.
05-10-2016, 09:45 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by todd Quote
I'm not a qualified person to judge telephoto zoom sharpness as I've never had a higher quality telephoto zoom to compare with. I do have an FA80-320 and just took it to my son's baseball game with the K-1 on Saturday and it got the job done just fine... No vignetting at all and looks better than it did on K-3 (though without the same reach of course).

Maybe I am not a good judge of sharpness at all because my FA20 does just fine for me too, though I haven't shot it outside the house on the K1 yet. Does just fine on K3 though to my aging eyes... Maybe it's soft and I just don't know it...


(at F8 hand-held)
Stunning photo.
05-10-2016, 09:47 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by todd Quote
Maybe I am not a good judge of sharpness at all because my FA20 does just fine for me too, though I haven't shot it outside the house on the K1 yet. Does just fine on K3 though to my aging eyes... Maybe it's soft and I just don't know it...
The fuzz doesn't start until the FF area. On APS-C I never complained, either!

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05-10-2016, 09:56 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
The fuzz doesn't start until the FF area. On APS-C I never complained, either!
ruh roh! there's goes my great plan to get by with it until we get our next new UWA prime released.. Well I'll still give it my best shot..
05-10-2016, 10:04 PM - 1 Like   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
The D FA 28-105mm is definitely the way to go for your walkaround lens. It's waaaay better than any legacy budget zoom I've tested so far (including the FA 28-105mm F4-5.6).

The FA 50mm is good, as is the DA 50mm if you don't mind a hint of vignetting and softer corners.

As a telephoto zoom, the DA* 60-250mm works surprisingly well in FF mode.

I'd also recommend the D FA 100mm as a dual-purpose telephoto/macro lens.

I would not recommend the FA 80-320mm or 100-300mm, as they're soft and exhibit heavy vignetting. Another lens I've found to be disappointing is the FA 20mm F2.8. Could be my copy, but it was considerably softer than the DA 12-24mm at 20mm.
My experience (limited) with the FA 80-320 differs from the above. I don't see a particular problem with vignetting at any focal length in my testing, and at 100% on my 55" 4K monitor the resolution results are surprisingly good for such a low cost lens. In any case the lens is certainly useful as a long portrait lens. Remember that full frame lenses look better on full frame than on APS-C because the Full Frame sensor is capturing an additional 56% of the image which the smaller sensor throws away. In my opinion the FA 80-320 looks a lot better on full frame than it did on APS-C.
05-10-2016, 10:19 PM   #15
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Maybe I'm just a bit biased after shooting with the 150-450, but this is some hardcore vignetting IMO I'll admit it's forgivable given the price of the lens.
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