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12-16-2014, 02:15 PM   #1
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Macro Lenses for Pentax K-500

Hi
I'm new to this forum and relatively new to Digital photography but am interested in close-up shooting. Has anyone out there got any advice for what to look for in macro lenses for my Pentax K-500, which to go for etc. Thanks

12-16-2014, 02:29 PM   #2
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I'd start by looking for lenses that focus to 1:1. The Tamron 90mm is a quality macro lens that's also affordable:
Review: Tamron 90mm Macro vs Pentax 100mm WR: - Introduction | PentaxForums.com Reviews

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12-16-2014, 02:33 PM   #3
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Hi and welcome!

There are lots of great macro lenses out there, both autofocus and manual focus. The shorter ones, like DA 35mm Macro and DFA 50mm Macro are very versatile and good for close-ups of things that don't move. The working distance for these lenses are too short anything living as they will be scared away.

For bugs etc it would be better with a 90 or 100 mm, e.g. the DFA 100 WR Macro, the FA 100 Macro (if you can find one second-hand), or even an old manual like the M 100 Macro as you will often find manual focus to be preferable anyway.

Other excellent alternatives are Tamron SP AF 90mm Macro or Sigma 70mm EX DG Macro. These are less expensive than the DFA but generally thought to be as good (or very nearly so) in most ways.

There are also many budget alternatives, like extension tubes and reversal rings. These alternatives will often give a very short working distance but can give a very high magnification.

Yet another alternative is to attach a close-up lens like a Raynox DCR-150 to a tele lens. This will give you more magnification the longer lens you attach it to, and a working distance of approx 20 cm from the from element. The depth of field is very narrow, though.

Hope this helps more than it confuses!
12-16-2014, 02:38 PM   #4
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Welcome to the forum, have a look at this thread which maybe of interest for all things Macro.

Macro Photography - PentaxForums.com

12-16-2014, 02:52 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
I'd start by looking for lenses that focus to 1:1. The Tamron 90mm is a quality macro lens that's also affordable:
Review: Tamron 90mm Macro vs Pentax 100mm WR: - Introduction | PentaxForums.com Reviews
Vote for Tamron 90mm, which is tackle sharp from wide open.
12-16-2014, 03:02 PM   #6
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Hey, welcome! Pretty much all modern macro lenses are very good, optically! Sharp, contrasty images. Sigma 105mm, Pentax 100mm, Tamron 90mm..
Most affordable is the Tamron 90mm. You can also buy older used macro lenses, like older Pentax 100mm macro lenses (beware, not all 100mm lenses are also macro, it needs to say macro on it). F, FA series are optically the same as the new DFA and have AF, but don't cost as much.
DFA 50mm f2.8 might also be a good choice, if you can find it for a good price
12-16-2014, 03:17 PM   #7
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I have a beautiful Tamron 90mm f/2.8 1:1 Macro lens listed in the forums. Click here for more info
12-16-2014, 04:24 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by JaneEast Quote
Hi
I'm new to this forum and relatively new to Digital photography but am interested in close-up shooting. Has anyone out there got any advice for what to look for in macro lenses for my Pentax K-500, which to go for etc. Thanks
This is just a guess, but if you are using the K500, price and budget may be the first thing on your mind! Nothing wrong with that as I have used the K500 with low cost macro solutions and have had very good results without a dedicated lens. It all comes down to how much working distance do you need and your willingness to learn full manual controls? For close focus objects there are a lot of options to reverse lenses or add low cost tubes.
With just the cheap included DAL 18-55 kit lens, I was able get a low cost pk mount to 49mm reversing ring for $6 USD. I reversed the kit lens and held the aperture open and had the date on a dime in almost full frame a few mm from the back glass. I then purchased a cheap 35-80 fa zoom lens with a sticky auto focus for $10 and it makes an excellent reversal macro lens - although it's quality is poor as a regular lens, as a reversed macro, it is amazing. There are lots of other combos or lenses to try and it's a fun learning experience without spending too much money. I've used various good cheap primes with extension tubes and even splurged on a Vivitar 2x macro focusing tele converter for $40 to use on old primes that can give 1-1 views.
Full disclosure - I like full manual lenses from early film days and the options I can get with them.
(adding two images pulled down from social media and resized by the forum attachment rules, so images are less than ideal for detailed viewing)
* Dime with reversed Pentax FA 35-80 lens
* Flower (about 5mm) with 50mm lens and Vivitar 2x macro focusing teleconverter.

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Last edited by ggascay; 12-16-2014 at 05:06 PM. Reason: added macro examples
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