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05-21-2010, 12:02 PM   #16
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Christworth ~ The only reason I mentioned no old "A" or "M" zoom or prime lenses is the time factor to teach yourself how to use them effectively/efficiently. They are more difficult to use. You will be under stress and time restraints, won't want to mess with the f-stop and other buttons to make the shot. The kit lens will serv you well and allow family & friends to use your camera and you could be in a picture or two. Vacations is like shopping on 'black friday' you spend more time chasing your tail and asking which direction should I go. I would spend the extra $'s on good GPS units. Purchase or make an 'over the shoulder camera strap, weight is on my shoulder and not pulling on my neck. Combination day pack and over the shoulder camera strap works for me. Take your camera and manual for a day long walks. Your experiences, during this time will tell you what gear you should purchase. In your own words, "Its a family vacation not a photo trip" I can't offer anything better than that.

DIY foam insert: DIY Camera Insert for a Backpack

example of daypack: Amazon.com: High Sierra Diplomat Lumbar Pack: Sports & Outdoors


Last edited by Kaufeetime; 05-21-2010 at 12:10 PM.
05-21-2010, 05:17 PM   #17
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Get on it .......

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/photographic-equipment-sale/101628-sale-d...m-sale-us.html
05-21-2010, 07:44 PM   #18
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QuoteQuote:
head to B+H and pick up the accessories you need.
Uhhh, the only hesitation I have about this advice is the in-store NYC sales tax.
It could be cheaper to pay the S&H, possibly even an expedited one, rather than
in-store pick up. Do the math and see first.
Also delivery will get whatever to you before leaving on the trip which will give
you a couple of days to get familiar with the lens or whatever.
Oh and for sure get whatever from B&H either by delivery or by in-store.
If you are going to shop on-line use the links in Adam's signature to shop B&H and/or
Adoramma - both are top places to buy from.
05-21-2010, 10:41 PM   #19
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Unpleasant truth: $400 isn't enough money to think about lenses.

The 18-250 lenses (whether Pentax, Tamron or Sigma) are all pretty good and very versatile, but none of them are cheap. You said you have the kit lens. Is that an 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 or something like that? I think that should be all the lens you need for NYC. And I would wager a small amount that you'll use it at the wide end (around 18-21) more than at the long end. I don't know the K-m body but the Pentax kit lenses seem to be pretty decent. I'd say, stick with what you have for now.

In spite of what I said above, I'll go ahead and try to make a recommendation. Be aware that all lens recommendations are VERY personal. I try to think about what's most likely to be useful for the person I'm talking to, based on what I know about them; but my recommendations are inevitably colored by my own prejudices.

If you wanted to make just 1 fairly safe lens purchase now, within your budget, and if you would like to complement the kit lens and give yourself the option of a real telephoto lens, I'd suggest the Pentax 50-200 f/4-5.6 ED WR. Currently $218 on Amazon.com. But I'd regard this as strictly optional. Keep in mind that changing lenses outdoors in Manhattan is a bad idea. It's an important discipline to learn to shoot with the lens you have on the camera.

An alternative purchase I might consider is the Pentax 16-45 f/4. I know, you've got this focal length kinda covered already, if you have the 18-55. But (a) 16 actually is significantly wider than 18 and (b) 45 < 55, nevertheless, the 16-45 is probably a better lens, it's a steal, and it has a constant aperture, which is a good thing. If I were going to New York with one lens and my choice was to take either the kit lens or the 16-45 f/4, I'd take the latter without hesitation.

Finally, if you want to get a prime lens, well, here your budget is going to be a serious problem. If for some reason, you a really stuck on the idea of getting a prime, I'd suggest visiting keh.com and checking out their used lens selection. Consider getting a manual focus. Manual focus should be FINE for a holiday in NYC and a good manual focus lens will be cheaper. If I were packing for New York and could take just one of my primes, I'd choose either the Pentax 21 or the Sigma 28—or just possibly the Pentax 40. I would not go wider than 40 if I could have just 1 lens.

Others will disagree. That's why ultimately you have to think it all through for yourself. It's also why I suggest that you don't spend money on lenses now, use what you've got, and consider new lenses later. 18-55 is a very useful focal range.


*

So you already have the body and the kit lens. I assume your kit lens came with a hood (it should have). Sounds like the K-m uses AA batteries. So I would suggest the following as very useful purchases, IN THIS ORDER:
  1. 4 Sanyo Eneloop batteries with Eneloop recharger (under $25?)
  2. Camera bag. This is a matter of personal preference and the only safe way to do this is shop in person. I have a bunch of bags. I have a LowePro Slingshot and find it very good for hiking, vacations, etc., and I use it for general work as well. But there are many different kinds of bags.
  3. Higher capacity storage card. I'd suggest a 4 GB or perhaps 8 GB. Get good quality, name brand cards like SanDisk—not the el cheapo things they sell by the check-out stand at the drugstore.
  4. If you DO buy another lens, get yourself either an old-fashioned drug store syringe or a Giotto's Rocket Blaster, to blow air out of the inside of your camera when you change lenses.

I think that about covers it. Have a great trip. New York is certainly one of the most photogenic cities on the planet.

Will



05-22-2010, 05:15 AM   #20
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My suggestions would be to pick up an insert to fit inside your favorite messenger bag or backpack, get your memory cards & lens hoods on line and get some rechargeable batteries at thomas distributing. I would suggest the following.

$25 - tenba insert - Tenba - Messenger: Removable Photo Insert

$35 - transcend memory cards - Newegg.com - Transcend 4GB Secure Digital high-Capacity(SDHC) Class 6 Flash card Model TS4GSDHC6

$15-$20 - Batteries - Thomas Distributing

approx $5-$10 for lens hood via e-bay if you go with rubber ones.

This will leave you +/- $300 for lenses.

Lenses to consider for your indoor shots in the museum and UN...... I would find a used 28mm (Vivitars) manual focus for $80-$100 and a fast Pentax 50mm (K, M or A) manual focus for $30-$80 for your night shots since you mentioned sticking around for the fireworks.

Total estimated cost for all this will be anywhere from $200 to $300 to stay way within your budget. Good luck and enjoy your trip.

Last edited by blind-bat; 05-22-2010 at 05:05 PM.
05-22-2010, 08:01 AM   #21
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WMBP, honestly two lenses that are just about as slow and offer very similar performance to the 18-250 are just an epic pain in the arse when travelling.

If you're gonna go through the hassle and mess of changing lenses then at least go ultra wide or prime-fast rather than mediocre.

A used 18-250 is $350. If you have the money to take a holiday you can squeeze a few extra $$$ out to fit in the accessories.
05-22-2010, 08:21 AM - 1 Like   #22
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You won't get agreement on manual vs. autofocus here or anywhere; you have to decided for yourself. Same with focal length. On a budget, I'd get the 50-200 or a 70-300 3rd party (you will occasionally miss those 15mm, but you'll occasionally miss the extra 100 on the top end too, although check those 70-300s for purple fringing on the long end), then move on, since you have the kit lens now.

Everyone has been focusing on NYC but it sounds like you'll be spending an equal amount of time elsewhere in all kinds of different situations.

The interesting debate you face is to buy in-person vs. mail, and in-person is a NYC-visit-only opportunity for most of us. The reality is that most lenses today seem to vary more in sample-to-sample quality than in design quality. The difference can be dramatic. So by visiting B&H (or other NYC store), if you can get the salespeople to cooperate, you could spend all day testing every copy they have of each lens you want to buy, and pick the absolute best. Maybe those who've tried this approach can comment. Of course that might kill all your vacation time, and leave you with nothing but pics of the interior of B&H, but hey, it is a NYC landmark of sorts.

Paul
05-22-2010, 06:27 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
You won't get agreement on manual vs. autofocus here or anywhere; you have to decided for yourself. Same with focal length. On a budget, I'd get the 50-200 or a 70-300 3rd party (you will occasionally miss those 15mm, but you'll occasionally miss the extra 100 on the top end too, although check those 70-300s for purple fringing on the long end), then move on, since you have the kit lens now.

Everyone has been focusing on NYC but it sounds like you'll be spending an equal amount of time elsewhere in all kinds of different situations.

The interesting debate you face is to buy in-person vs. mail, and in-person is a NYC-visit-only opportunity for most of us. The reality is that most lenses today seem to vary more in sample-to-sample quality than in design quality. The difference can be dramatic. So by visiting B&H (or other NYC store), if you can get the salespeople to cooperate, you could spend all day testing every copy they have of each lens you want to buy, and pick the absolute best. Maybe those who've tried this approach can comment. Of course that might kill all your vacation time, and leave you with nothing but pics of the interior of B&H, but hey, it is a NYC landmark of sorts.

Paul
I was actually thinking about going the route of the tamron 70-300mm. Its cheap, and the length will be nice at the yankees game, safari at six flags, on 4th of July, the zoo, and maybe the blue ridge. I was listening to everyone saying in New York you won't want a long lens or to be switching. In this case I could only take the kit lens with me to New York and bring the other lens with me for the other situations. And best of all it will keep me within my budget (which although it is a very tiny budget it is in fact a budget)

05-22-2010, 07:01 PM   #24
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70-300 would be a good choice. You might consider used, as there are a lot of these around, even the newer Di variety. For some type of pictures you might find the purple fringing at the long end excessive, but for others it would probably be ok, and at least you'd have that long range.

You will find use for the 70-300 in NYC, so don't leave it behind.

Paul
05-22-2010, 07:03 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
70-300 would be a good choice. You might consider used, as there are a lot of these around, even the newer Di variety. For some type of pictures you might find the purple fringing at the long end excessive, but for others it would probably be ok, and at least you'd have that long range.

You will find use for the 70-300 in NYC, so don't leave it behind.

Paul
Ok I won't. I guess since I was planning on carrying a backpack anyways it wouldn't be significant. I will just have to be careful when I change lenses (Though I'm guessing it wont be that often)
05-23-2010, 01:53 PM   #26
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You will soon learn that by definition, the correct lens for any given situation is whichever one you don't have on the camera.

Seriously, I would suggest a vest or something with pockets big enough to hold a lens, or maybe a waist pack. You don't want to have to deal with accessing a backpack for every lens change. All you really have to be careful of is to avoid dropping the lens. I've only dropped one, ever - into a stream. It wasn't a fatal drop, but I did replace the lens eventually only because I couldn't figure out how to disassemble it enough to clean the "film" off the middle elements. It was not an expensive lens.

When on a trip taking lots of pictures, you want to check for sensor dirt periodically. I had never gotten an dust on my k200 sensor until my last trip - near the beginning of 1500 pics. Luckily I noticed the huge clump and cleaned it off. It wouldn't come off with a rocket blower, so I had to brush it off. Don't forget to take a blower and brush. For my other camera (K100) without "dust alert", I try to upload to a PC every night and check for dust. Small blobs aren't an issue - this giant clump was the first dirt I've had that generally wouldn't have been easy to clone away.

Paul

Last edited by tibbitts; 05-23-2010 at 02:03 PM.
05-23-2010, 06:49 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
You will soon learn that by definition, the correct lens for any given situation is whichever one you don't have on the camera.

Seriously, I would suggest a vest or something with pockets big enough to hold a lens, or maybe a waist pack. You don't want to have to deal with accessing a backpack for every lens change. All you really have to be careful of is to avoid dropping the lens. I've only dropped one, ever - into a stream. It wasn't a fatal drop, but I did replace the lens eventually only because I couldn't figure out how to disassemble it enough to clean the "film" off the middle elements. It was not an expensive lens.

When on a trip taking lots of pictures, you want to check for sensor dirt periodically. I had never gotten an dust on my k200 sensor until my last trip - near the beginning of 1500 pics. Luckily I noticed the huge clump and cleaned it off. It wouldn't come off with a rocket blower, so I had to brush it off. Don't forget to take a blower and brush. For my other camera (K100) without "dust alert", I try to upload to a PC every night and check for dust. Small blobs aren't an issue - this giant clump was the first dirt I've had that generally wouldn't have been easy to clone away.

Paul
The thing is I couldn't see myself walking around New York with a vest on. I'm thinking I could just leave the kit lens on for the majority of the time and put the 70-300mm on during the situations that require it.
05-23-2010, 06:59 PM   #28
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I think thats exactly it. I used to travel with those same two lenses, and used the 70-300 quite a bit, but eventually I realized most of the interesting things in the distance that seemed to need the 70-300 would eventually be closer to me if I just walked toward them, and I could just wait until then to shoot them.
05-23-2010, 07:14 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Chriswirth930 Quote
The thing is I couldn't see myself walking around New York with a vest on. I'm thinking I could just leave the kit lens on for the majority of the time and put the 70-300mm on during the situations that require it.
Carry too much and you may not come back with it. Don't forget mugging money.
05-23-2010, 07:18 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by graphicgr8s Quote
Carry too much and you may not come back with it. Don't forget mugging money.

I'm in NYC all the time with a camera and never had a problem! Don't worry about it. Your biggest danger to your wallet will be shopping at B&H or Adorama.
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