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07-11-2012, 06:22 PM   #1
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Lens recommendation for wedding / trip

Hi all,

I need a recommendation for lenses (I'm currently own a Pentax k-x) for a wedding of a friend (I will shoot - it's just informal) on October and for a trip to NYC on Novevmber. I don't have enough money, just 200 USD .

I was looking at these lenses:
* Sigma 18-50 mm DC (Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8-4.5 DC OS HSM Zoom For Pentax D-SLRs 861109)
* Pentax 35mm f/2.4
* and those Sigma/Tamron from 50-200 and 70-300

I'm very unluckily to have a really tight budget, but I guess you can help me to choose a good lens for both situations

I really appreaciate your help!

Thanks,
Andrés

07-11-2012, 06:24 PM   #2
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What lenses do you own now?
07-11-2012, 06:44 PM   #3
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I would say save your money and stick with the 18-55. I don't see how you improve over this lens with the budget you have.

Maybe consider a manual 28 or 50mm for some of the formal group shots where you have the time to manually focus? If you can get far enough away, the M50 f1.7 would produce great photographs. Alternatively, consider a manual flash ASAP and start practicing with its use.
07-11-2012, 07:12 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by twitch Quote
What lenses do you own now?
Hi, i own a :
Pentax 18-55 from kit
Pentax m 50 mm f/1.4
Pentax m 100mm f/2.8

Mamiya 28 mm f/2.8 and an Helios 58mm f/2

I was looking something with auto focus to shoot on low light too

Thanks

07-11-2012, 07:22 PM   #5
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You can get a lot for $200, if you rent expensive wedding lens(es) for the time from CameraLensRental.com. If you are comfortable investing in the wedding and not trying to build a lens collection. If you choose 2 lenses, email them to ship both in one box and they will save you the $29 shipping/handling on one lens. Now back to your first question, which lens? I am no wedding photog but I just rented both the da70mm Ltd, and fa77 Ltd to compare (daughters wedding coming up) and either one is a great tele portraiture lens...I chose the fa77 however. Then something wider maybe for group shots? dont know what your planned shot list (yes, you need a list) is but even the sub-$200 da35/2.4 (just reviewed on forum front page) or a rented fa35/2 would provide much bang for the buck.

Hope that gives you some ideas.....
07-11-2012, 08:12 PM   #6
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I've owned the 18-50 f/2.8-4.5, and found its IQ not enough better than my kit 18-55WR. For a wedding the quiet motor could be valuable though.

If you are comfortable with manual focus I'd suggest a mid-tele zoom like the SMC-M 75-150/4 or my Rikenon. Great image quality, reasonably bright at f/4 and well within budget. It would make a nice set along with the 28 and 50.. hey that's my kit no wonder I think it makes sense!
07-11-2012, 10:37 PM   #7
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First 2 choices I think are great and you will still be using them in 10 years time. My sigma 70-300 does not cut it. It is really handy to have a zoom from the 70 -150 range. Most weddings also need some lighting such as a powerful flash that can be bounced. I would suggest you stick with the kind of lenses you are use to. If you don't regularly use manual focus, don't use manual focus lenses at the wedding.

For my next wedding 90% of the photos will be taken with a sigma 17-50 and the pentax 50-135 out of my personal choice of 18 lenses.

Hope it's an enjoyable experience.

07-12-2012, 05:25 AM   #8
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First of all thanks to all for your kindly & helpful replies.

@imtheguy: I live in Uruguay, so it's not an option for me to rent something. Actually, my budget it's limited to that amount because for buys greater than USD 200 the gov tax me about 65%. For that reason I was asking for a lens within that budget that I can buy on amazon, Bhphotovideo or ebay.

@jjmdr-pdx: I actually feel more or less comfortable with MF but like it's a wedding I don't want to lose time focusing on the night (the wedding itself + the reception start at 9:00 PM and finish about 5:00 AM the other day) I was looking something bright + versatil. My kit lens it's a Pentax 18-55 not WR and not bright as the sigma one.

@Bob from Aus: My worries about the Pentax 35mm (besides I'd love to own that lens) it's the fixed F length. I think for both situations like the wedding or the trip, have a versatil lens with f/2.8 would be better.

Any other recommendation within that budget ? Don't matter if it's used by condition it's mint.

Thanks again!
07-12-2012, 06:54 AM   #9
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The only wedding I shot was years ago with a 35mm, I used my nifty thrifty Pentax 50. I brought along a 135mm and 28mm, the 28mm got two or three shots, for the large group, everything else was done with the 50mm lens and it worked quite well. My niece got everyone together and she and my sister herded the various groups over to the photo area where the reception was held, I had more than enough room for eveything but the large group shot (around 40 people) with the 50mm. I could have backed up more, but opted to stay put and swap to the 28mm. The 135 mm never even came out of the camera bag, I was able to stay off to the side and still get close enough for the 50mm to do a good job (without flash) during the ceremony. That amazed me, I had enough light to do without the flash for the ceremony...I was dreading the possibility of annoying everyone with flash pops, and 400 ISO film let me get along without it. Everything else was done with 200 ISO and flash.

I'm definitely no wedding expert, just relating what worked for me the one time I had to try it. I was really worried, I wasn't that good to begin with and had virtually no experience using flash, so it was a tense night...fortunately everything came out quite well, I lost about 5-8 shots out of 4 rolls of film.
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