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05-02-2018, 04:38 AM   #1
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K-5ii and K-01 in the hands of babes. Greetings from Germany.

First of all, I look at the Alps every day out my window. Actually, I'm from the States, but have lived here 30+ years.

My photographic interests: animals in Southern Africa, birds, mushrooms and night photography would be nice. Sometimes I take snapshots of my family.

My first trip to South Africa 2014 I used an ist-DL. Didn't like it much at all.

Then I bought the K-01 and K-5ii, used of course, for a trip to Namibia in 2016.
The pictures were so bad it was embarrassing and a really nice series of pictures at Etosha were hopelessly overexposed.

I have a strange collection of lenses. Some just SMC because there are people that say they work. However, a macro lense that I bought used, I could just not get it focussed. I read something about synchronizing it, sounded too complicated for me. Another avid Pentax user told me to forget it. I'm inclined to believe him.

The next Africa trip is to Zambia in November 2018 and I would like to be better prepared. On the last trip, my husband made much better pictures with the Panasonic Lumix FZ200.
Of course birding is also very interesting in Southern Africa - so what to use?

My other hobby is mushrooming (I mean all of them) with completely different requirements on hardware and technique. And I need a good macro lense for this.

I do not have a budget of 10,000 € for lenses. Nope. Not now, not later. So I am restricted to hobby only equipment. It would be sad to have great equipment and not be able to go anywhere with it.

Of course, I could sell everything and get a good bridge camera. Maybe that is the answer.

I hope to spend more time in the forum than previously, discover the possibilities on a small budget, see what others are doing and get some help.

I do have a question concerning the Sigma 50-500mm F4,5-6, 3 DG OS HSM. It seems that Sigma no longer produces this lense für Pentax?

What would be an acceptable price for one in good used condition?
From what I have read to date, it would be useless to try to add a teleconverter to this lense. Anyone with experience?
Does it make sense to carry 2 cameras around on Safari? I did last time. One with the telezoom and one with the DA18-55. I'm wondering if I should keep the K-01 or sell or trade it.
(Note: I may post these questions in another thread.)

Thanks for reading this far.
-Rebecca

Accessories:
HD Pentax-DA 1:4-5.8, 55-300mm ED WR (a teleconverter 1.4x might work with this one but not 2.0x?)
Pentax DA 18-55II
Pentax DA 1<.1,8 50mm
Tamron 70-300 1:4-5.6 Tele-Macro
Sigma DG OS 70-300 1:4-5.6
Tamron SP 10-24mm 1:3.5-4.5
SMC Pentax-M 1:2.8 40 mm (Pancake for microscopy pictures - have an Olympus microscope for mushrooms)
SMC Pentax-M Macro 1:4 50mm (that I can't focus)
SMC Pentax-M 1:2,8 28 mm
SMC Pentax-A 1:1.7 50mm
Vivitar 2x Macro Focusing Teleconverter MC
Batteriegriff (nicht Pentax) für K-5ii
Olympus Winkelsucher - vintage
I think that's it.

05-02-2018, 05:24 AM - 1 Like   #2
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I'll jump in but I can't cover all of your questions.

Macro: depending on your desired working distance you have a lot of fantastic options. The go to option for me is the DFA 100 WR which you can buy new or used. I like the 100mm which on your K5ii will give you plenty of working distance I think. There are many manual focus and autofocus options as well around this focal length: kiron/Lester Dine 105 macro; Pentax: A 100 macro, F/FA 100 macro; Tamron 90 macro; and many more. There are also exotic lenses that are unobtainable like the FA or A* 200 macro.

With any of these lighting is also a consideration. A strobe ring light is one option to consider.
05-02-2018, 05:51 AM - 1 Like   #3
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Welcome to the forums! Good to see another safari junkie

I have managed fairly well with the 55-300 on my trips (Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Madagascar, South Africa x3). On the first trips I had a K-5, then a K-3, and now a K-1. The 55-300 has worked well with all of them. It's not well suited for birds, though. My wife usually gets better images with her super zoom (of birds, that is).

I have the 1.4x TC and find it's not really usable on the 55-300. Yes, it sort of works, but you need very good light and the focus gets very slow - I get at least as good results by just cropping. To get good results with a TC you should get a faster lens (like a DA*300), or hts (no longer in production) Sigma 100-300/4.

You are correct about the 50-500 - it's no longer in procuction. You can get a feeling about the second-hand prices oner in the Review section of the forums (Sigma 50-500mm F4-6.3 APO EX DG Lens Reviews - Sigma Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database).

As for two cameras, I think it's nice to have. I managed well with just one for most of my trips (the 55-300 covers a lot, after all), and I have always found two full-size DSLRs too much to carry. Now I have a small Ricoh GR as a second camera, next to no extra weight. I guess the K-01 with a small lens shouldn't add too much bulk and weight, but only you can decide how much is too much

UncleVanya gives good advice on the macro. I have the DFA100 and am very happy with it.

Hmm, Zamibia... Would that be South Luangwa?
05-02-2018, 07:39 AM - 1 Like   #4
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welcome

lots of willing people to give you advice

on techniques

what to spend your money on

and other " important " matters

_______________________________________

I would advise you to look at this current thread:

Safari trip lens advice - Page 2 - PentaxForums.com

when we went to Tanzania in 2016, my " long " lens was an " experienced " Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 LD Tele-Macro [1:2] (Model 772D)

Tamron Lenses for Pentax: Legacy Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

and at times it wasn't long enough

at times it wasn't short enough as the wildlife were literal " there " right outside our vehicle.

so, you have to decide what to do.

on our next trip scheduled for 2019, I will be taking my D A * 300mm, my D FA 150-450 plus the 1.4 rear converter will be there if needed. On the short end I will have the 16 - 85 mm zoom, DFA 70-200 F2.8 zoom plus primes. My equipment can be found in my profile

I will have my K 3 and K 3 II so I have two lenses mounted at all time, one short focal length, one longer

Pentax Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database

obviously, cost and weight can be an issue.

_________________________________________________

check out photos by Savoche and Noelcmn who often post photos of African Wildlife and look at what they are using and how close the wildlife can be.

I am sure they would reply to PMs as well. Noel is from South Africa and Savoche has travelled there quite often

Wildlife - Page 4 - PentaxForums.com

Wildlife - Page 359 - PentaxForums.com


I had no problem with dust but I was in a different area of Africa


_____________________________________________________________________

have fun on your trip, take photos with your mark 1 eyeball first and store in brain, then try your camera and be sure to keep your head on a swivel, looking all around so you don't miss anything. Back up, Back up, Back up your photos as much as possible

05-03-2018, 01:06 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by savoche Quote
Welcome to the forums! Good to see another safari junkie
....
Hmm, Zamibia... Would that be South Luangwa?
Like that a lot! Safarie Junkie.
Got to admit - Yellowstone was great, but Southern Africa is fantastic.

I could go more often, but DH likes to go other places as well.

Yep. Just lodge hopping. No driving this time. We did 5,000 km in RSA and 5,000 km in Namibia. Looking for less stress and more vacation.

---------- Post added 05-03-18 at 01:39 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Aslyfox Quote
when we went to Tanzania in 2016, my " long " lens was an " experienced " Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 LD Tele-Macro [1:2] (Model 772D)
...
and at times it wasn't long enough
at times it wasn't short enough as the wildlife were literal " there " right outside our vehicle.

I also have a Tamron AF70-300 F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro 1:2, Model A17P. Do you know what the difference to your model is?

Left it at home last trip since I wanted to keep it light.

Agree, no matter how I'm set up, it's never right.
I didn't mind having 2 bodies with me. The K-01 with DA 18-55 was light.
DH had the FZ-200. His pictures were generally always good.

Thanks for the other tips. I have to work through them.
05-03-2018, 01:40 AM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
I'll jump in but I can't cover all of your questions.

Macro: depending on your desired working distance you have a lot of fantastic options. The go to option for me is the DFA 100 WR which you can buy new or used. I like the 100mm which on your K5ii will give you plenty of working distance I think. There are many manual focus and autofocus options as well around this focal length: kiron/Lester Dine 105 macro; Pentax: A 100 macro, F/FA 100 macro; Tamron 90 macro; and many more. There are also exotic lenses that are unobtainable like the FA or A* 200 macro.

With any of these lighting is also a consideration. A strobe ring light is one option to consider.
If considering the D FA 100mm f2.8 Macro [ which I highly recommend ] and cost is an issue ( when isn't cost an issue ? ) be aware that :

" The optical design [ of the WR ] is the tried-and-proven formula of the previous generation D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro lens, which in turn had inherited the optical design from the well-respected FA 100mm F2.8 and F 100mm F2.8 macro lenses introduced in 1991 and 1987, respectively. None of these earlier lenses had rounded aperture blades. "

Read more at: Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 WR Macro Review - Specifications | PentaxForums.com Reviews

so there are options available, although admittedly none are WR

I have the SMC Pentax-D FA 100mm F2.8 Macro which I like a lot both for Macro and for a short telephoto

if you are not aware, you can go up to " Lenses " above and find reviews of various lenses both Pentax and Third Party such as the:

Sigma 150-500mm F5-6.3 APO DG OS HSM

Sigma 150-500mm F5-6.3 APO DG OS HSM Lens Reviews - Sigma Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

among the info found in these reviews is a price trend chart

---------- Post added 05-03-18 at 03:45 ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by snowwhite Quote
Like that a lot! Safarie Junkie.
Got to admit - Yellowstone was great, but Southern Africa is fantastic.. . .

I also have a Tamron AF70-300 F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro 1:2, Model A17P. Do you know what the difference to your model is?

Left it at home last trip since I wanted to keep it light.

I didn't mind having 2 bodies with me. The K-01 with DA 18-55 was light. . . .
I took an experienced Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 LD Tele-Macro [1:2] (Model 772D)

Read more at: Tamron Lenses for Pentax: Legacy Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Review Database

on our first trip to Tanzania in 2016. ( we will be returning there in 2019 and I will be in Yellowstone on May 14 )

I would advise strongly back up cameras for both of you

Last edited by aslyfox; 05-03-2018 at 01:59 AM.
05-03-2018, 09:28 AM - 1 Like   #7
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Having owned the F 100 macro I can attest that it is a very good lens very similar to the DFA 100 wr in rendering with slight differences caused by the coating.

05-05-2018, 01:43 AM - 1 Like   #8
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Wow that's quite some intro, welcome to the forum, enjoy your time here.
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