Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home

Show Printable Version Search this Thread
06-23-2012, 08:45 AM   #1
Junior Member

Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 34
Hi from Finland and a maybe new Pentax user. Q. about WR "kit lenses"

Hello all. I'm (sort of) long time hobby photographer (just digital, I was too young during the film age). I "got into it" just after my first child was born (yeah, you parents now this. You want to take A LOT of photos of the newcomer.. :). My first "real" camera was a PowerShot G2 that still server the aforementioned kid, now close to 10 years old.

That "infected" me with the dreaded "shutterbug" and by an accident after reading a tech blog, I fell in love with the then-quite-new Foveon sensor. This and that happened and I got a Sigma SD10 as my first real ILC. I shot with it happily for years (got it in 2005) but then quite recently got very tired of its slow speed and bulk. (The thing weights ~900g body only, and shoots max 1.6fps for 6 images, then pauses for full 2min.) I now have three kids, so a camera that slow is a frustrating thing. I researched and read and read around and finally came to the conclusion that a Lumix G3 was right for me. After a while I managed to get my budget the right way and purchased the G3 with the 14-42mm kit lens - and boy do I love the thing.

But, with the Sigma I was always content of the lenses I had. The kit 18-50mm with a 0.5x wide adapter, a 24-70mm silent focusing and a 28-200mm walk-around hyperzoom. The G3 brought with it the ability to buy LOTS of adapters and use adapter legacy glass. I got a few and I was sold, big time. Now I really don't even use the kit lens, but usually shoot with K-mount 135/2.8 or M42-threaded 50/1.8 and 200/4. (See, for some reason I chose Pentax even then :)

But now, just a few days ago when again reading around I bumped into the Pentax press announcement of K-30... Why, oh WHY didn't anybody tell me back when I was choosing a new camera that Pentax would come out with THAT?

Seriously, for the first time in a loooong while, I actually regret buying something. I usually pride myself for researching stuff first so I don't have regrets afterwards, but this time... The K-30 has me wrapped around it's features like a small mouse in cat's paws.

Stabilizer in-body? Weather Resistant?! Compact size? TAv mode? Pentaprism viewfinder? and FOCUS PEAKING? In a *great* looking "real" camera! (No, I don't really like Sony's NEX series at all and I can't shoot without a real viewfinder to save my life. Real meaning SLR optical viewfinder, or good EVF. Optical tunnels don't count :) And it doesn't hurt that I can use all my legacy glass with it if I ever get it. K-mounts go straight and M42-to-K adapter costs like $2.

Now, day after day I think about how I can finance the K-30 when it finally arrives.

So yes, come fall I'm probably a new Pentax owner (Although very possibly a poor one :)

So there's the question. If I manage somehow to have my money situation fixed so I can get it, which kit should I choose? The price difference for the Body + 18-55mm + 50-200mm versus the Body + 18-135mm is under 100. Some of you probably have had all of those, so some advice would be good. The twin-kit would have a bit longer reach but with lens changing and the pricier kit would have more IQ. But is the IQ and AF speed of the 18-135mm THAT much better so it would warrant loosing the 135-200mm length. I do love to shoot at longer lengths quite a bit, that's why I originally purchased my 200/4 legacy lens. And most of my shots with the Sigma 28-200mm was from the longer end.

The obvious cheaper choice would probably be body only + Sigma 18-250mm or something similar, but that way I would lose WR capability which I'm not ready to do. WR for the whole kit would be heaven around here. I'm too tired of running for cover with a camera under my coat :D

06-23-2012, 10:13 AM   #2
Insanely humble
Loyal Site Supporter
savoche's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Lowlands of Norway
Posts: 17,998
Welcome! WR is definitely reassuring. I have the 18-55+50-200 kit, but would rather have had the 18-135. Quick and silent auto focus and possibly better IQ, yes, but mainly because it's more versatile. In a situation where you NEED WR you don't want to swap lenses...!

Besides, I'd much rather have a 55-300 for reach, even though it is not WR. It really is a better lens than the 50-200.
06-23-2012, 11:49 AM   #3
Junior Member

Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 34
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by savoche Quote
... In a situation where you NEED WR you don't want to swap lenses...!
That's my reasoning too. Even though I have the Sigma, I've still always been rather loathe to swap lenses anywhere "not safe". (To those who don't know: the Sigma has a protector element on top of the sensor. If you take off the lens, you can't physically reach the sensor/mirror/shutter before you remove that element. ) In a situation that calls for WR body and lens, yeah, I wouldn't like to swap lenses either. Thanks.

That only adds to my reasoning to get the 18-135mm. Other things that I figure in is, that I already have a 200mm lens (even though it's legacy). There's not much when you specifically need something between 136mm and 199mm. And with the K-30's features, the legacy lenses become even more useful. In a pinch, I think getting the body + 18-55mm kit would be enough. I have 28, 50, 135 and 200 focal lengths covered in legacy glass and what I could tell from a small search around fleaBay, the Pentax 35-80mm is *very* cheap (not that much for quality, but cheap :) (It is listed as AF lens, but I don't know if that lens' AF works with the K-30 body - I'm just guessing it will.)

QuoteOriginally posted by savoche Quote
Besides, I'd much rather have a 55-300 for reach, even though it is not WR. It really is a better lens than the 50-200.
Thanks. That's one of my bigger fails right now - I don't much know about Pentax. I've never held a Pentax digital camera in hand even. I know squat about the lenses, so all info like this helps. I'll look into that 55-300. (It would be better, even for reach only.) That would be long enough to warrant a place alongside the 18-135mm also, unlike the 50-200mm at least if you ask me. 200mm ain't THAT much longer than 135mm, but 300mm is. I currently have a 70-300mm for my Sigma, and even though my main lens for that is the 28-200mm, the 300mm is enough longer and enough better for macro (and was CHEAP as all h*ll) to warrant its place among my gear.

My grandfather had a Pentax film-body when I was.. err. 5? or so. That's my only Pentax experience to date if you don't count the few lenses I have (and none of them are really Pentax, just K-mount).

Ideally, I'd like to have something in the mid range, say 20-ish/30-ish to 100mm (maybe 135mm) that would be FAST AF-wise and compact enough to be the number one on-the-go lens. Anything below 20mm and AF is pretty much a gimmick, since you have DoF to share, anything above - say - 200mm and at least I better have time and/or tripod to shoot and thus a MF lens would do fine. But in the mid-range, where most of my action shots are from, I would need FAST AF, durability, WR and great low-ISO performance from the body wouldn't hurt either.

This all sounds so exactly like the K-30 + 18-135mm kit that I have hard time to find anything to compare to - there just isn't anything with the K-30's features. I was *that* close to buying a K-5 last year when I first started to have enough of the Sigma, but the price bag then was a definitive no-no. (I think it was around ~1500 for body only locally.) And the K-5 doesn't have focus peaking, which I've come to like *very* much. I haven't used the K-01 at all, so I can't compare really, but the Sony's implementation is top-notch, it *really* helps focusing manually.
06-24-2012, 12:50 AM   #4
Zav's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2009
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,370
I am not sure that I would go for the 18-135 (never tried this lens and it has some mixed reviews) but I know for sure I would avoid the 50-200!

06-24-2012, 04:41 AM - 1 Like   #5
Insanely humble
Loyal Site Supporter
savoche's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Lowlands of Norway
Posts: 17,998
The 18-135 doesn't look too strong at 100+, but most (apart from photozone) seem to agree that it's better than the 18-55 in that range. I think AnttiV's MF primes will complement it nicely, with the 135 and 200 strengthening the long end, and the 28 and 50 providing speed for low light.

And, no, the 50-200 doesn't get the best reviews. Mine is ok, but I hardly use it since I have the 55-300.

@AnttiV: With focus peaking (wish the K-5 had it) using MF should be a lot easier, so I think they should serve well until you sort out what you "need". Then add primes or fast zooms depending on your shooting style - unless you are happy with what you already have, of course.

Oh, and do read the lens reviews here at the forums, and check out the lens clubs.
06-25-2012, 06:18 AM   #6
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
TER-OR's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Dundee, IL
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 6,698
Were I to buy a camera/lens combo right now, I'd get the 18-135 and skip the 18-55. It's really quite nice, and super-quick to focus. I think IQ is fine, and it's very convenient.

It's not a macro, it's not a super-close-focusing lens. So - bear that in mind and zoom to 35mm or so to minimize fishyness. Any zoom is a compromise, and with this you don't get super-long, but you get some good qualities.
black pussywillow | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

I still have a 16-45 and it's good in a lot of ways. I'm always a bit hesitant to put it through some abuse but the 18-135 seems more durable.

  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
adapter, body, camera, kit, legacy, lens, love, pentax, sigma, viewfinder
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Don't say Pentax "Q" in French ... "Q" = "cul" = "A--" Jean Poitiers Pentax Q 52 11-10-2013 06:25 AM
For Sale - Sold: Pentax "M" Lens Start up Kit Curbster54 Sold Items 18 07-30-2012 06:42 PM
"New" Pentax user. mangelito Welcomes and Introductions 9 12-01-2011 01:03 AM
"New" Pentax user Tony-S Welcomes and Introductions 4 05-25-2011 12:08 PM
Anyone bring "E2" fluid or the "Digital Survival Kit" on a plane? m8o Photographic Technique 2 07-31-2007 06:20 PM

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:22 PM. | See also:, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]