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05-25-2010, 01:30 AM   #1
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newbie with K-x which lens will suit me?

Hi all,
This is my fist post here, but I've read alot and you guys seem to know a lot so.....
I have decided to buy my first SLR camera, a Pentax K-x, I am happy with my decision this far but I am having so much trouble deciding which lens option is best for me. I have read and read as much as I can absorb for a complete newbie. Some opinions would be useful to help me make a decision. I have read over lots of posts in this forum, that has been a very educational experience, but haven't found a post which describes my situation.

Most important to me is I want to take some good photos of my family and 2 year old son, so indoors/low light and moving object.

I love the look of Bokeh, but I am a complete novice so I know I gotta learn to use the camera before I can get too fancy.

I had lots of fun in the past with the macro on my point and shoot.

I want to learn how I can use the camera to take good photos of my family, have some fun and generally amuse myself.

I know I should wait to see what I need but, I have a really limited budget now and in the future so buying lenses in future will be a struggle. I hate buying junk and regretting it later, my budget was $700 but I'm prepared to stretch it, and it is stretching it, to $900 if that will give me the most satisfaction and least frustration as I come in the future to understand how to use the equipment.

I am thinking my best path is the Sigma 17-70 and some cheap manual focus "fast 50" that I pick up later, and save up $ for a longer focal lenght zoom

These are the options and best prices in Australian $, I'm not interested in importing from Adorama or anyone. I have include my novice opinions.


1.Sigma 18-125 f/3.8-5.6
$680 Good versatile range, but slow, maybe not great for low light and indoors, which is important to me

2.Pentax 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 DAL
$ 725
Cheap,an ok lens not as much range and slow, but light and easy to carry

3.Pentax 18-55 f/3.5-5.6 DAL
+ Sigma 70-300 f/4.5-6.3
$835 stretching my budget
Got things pretty well covered in the focal range but the 70-300 might not do the job well except in v. good conditions because of aperture. But anyway
is there anything else I can afford as an alterative in the future that would be better

and this option stands out
4. Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4.5
$895 really streeetching my budget but a very very good price, I couldn't afford to buy this lens later.
This seems to be a better quality lens than the Kit and longer focal range, better aperture which would be good for low light. Is it worth stretching to get this and later on getting a sigma 70-300 lens for around $300ish and some old cheap prime lense–, but having a better quality kit long term. The main thing seems to be the app is better = low light performance and more speed. But it is big
Is the 17-70 f 2.8-4.5 over the pentax18-55 f3.5-5.6 DAL worth for my use the extra it would cost me.

phew, thanks if you read all that, I hope it makes sense, any advice will be really welcome.





05-25-2010, 01:45 AM   #2
hcc
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Welcome to the forum.

The K-x is an excellent camera and you will not be disappointed. If your budget is stressed out, the best-value-for money lens is the kit lens (18-55mm) (when purchased with the camera). A more expansive alternative is the combo of 2 kit lenses (18-55 & 55-300).

You may consider to start first with the 18-55 kit lens, quite a good kit lens. Once you learned how to use well your camera and lens, you could consider some prime lenses. There are some good 2nd lenses at reasonable prices : eg Pentax 50mm f1.7.

Last edited by hcc; 05-26-2010 at 01:50 AM. Reason: Typo
05-25-2010, 02:01 AM   #3
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thanks for the quick response, the only twin kit available here is 18-55 and 70-300, you said 18-55 & 18-300?, no such thing available here. We cant get the 18-55 and 55-300 kit either
05-25-2010, 02:35 AM   #4
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Hi kangamel and welcome to the forum.

This is going to be a complicated answer and there will be many different opinions, but here is mine for what it is worth.

From the prices you have quoted you are looking at getting your camera from Digitalcamera warehouse. That is where i got my K-x from with the twin lens kit(18-55 & 50-200), but i have noticed they no longer list that kit. Dirtcheapcameras are still listing that kit if you want to go with that option for $865. You might want to call DCW and see if they can still get that kit for you.

Having said that i found my copy of the 18-55 to be a little soft in many photos although generally not a bad lens(damn pixel peeping). Consequentially i developed a case of LBA and decided i wanted something better.
I chose the Sigma 17-70 f2.8-4.5 and find it to be a better lens allround, and is now my general walkabout lens. Although i think if you decide to take option 4 you will soon find you need more reach sometimes.

With option 3 check which 70-300 lens they are offering, the non apo version is supposedly not very good.

Also dont forget to budget for a decent SD card and a set of eneloop batteries and charger, you may also find that soon you will need a better flash than the onboard one.

Peter

05-25-2010, 04:59 AM   #5
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What hcc meant was that in several countries the kx sells with two lenses, the DAL 18-55 and the DAL 55-300 (like here). I know you are in Australia, so not certain if that kit combo is available, but it is quite nice. Otherwise, I would just start with the kit lens and look at getting the DA 55-300 down the road to fill in the tele end. Maybe a nice manual focus 50 to fill in in low light situations as well.
05-25-2010, 07:46 AM   #6
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IMO buy the kit 18-55mm and a fast A 50mm f1.7 second hand (around 50-100 AUD)

The kit will serve you in broad daylight or interior with flash (though you can bump the ISO to 3200 and still getting good results in available low light)

The fast A f1.7 will give you the bokeh and shallow DOF that you'll see pretty soon you expect from some of your images albeit with manual focus.

Lately you can get an inexpensive Tamron or Sigma 70-300 and you're set.
05-25-2010, 07:53 AM   #7
rkt
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you could also look at the 2.8 zooms from Tamron (17-50 2.8 or 28-75 2.8). They get good reviews ... and shouldn't be too costly even new...
05-25-2010, 08:50 AM   #8
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Find the kit DA L 18-55 & DA L 55-300.
that would be a very good start for you and it would take a long time before you will upgrade.
Best bang for the buck!

05-25-2010, 09:40 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by GerryL Quote
Find the kit DA L 18-55 & DA L 55-300.
that would be a very good start for you and it would take a long time before you will upgrade.
Best bang for the buck!
I've too just recently just invested in this kit lenses set up, I myself started looking for more lenses, but by trail & error have decided for the time being to stick with these two lenses, for I have found these two lenses to be a fantastic start.
Both lenses if used with the correct settings produce some amazing photo's from this so called entry level camera. Why they call this an entry level camera is behind me, it is a superb camera, well capable in competing with many higher level camera's.
05-25-2010, 06:06 PM   #10
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I got myself a Tamron 28-75mm f2.8
Amazing lens for the price. Much better than the kit lens.
05-26-2010, 01:25 AM   #11
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I second the suggestion for a Tamron f2.8 lens; either 17-50 or 28-75. Much better options that the ones you list.
05-26-2010, 01:43 AM   #12
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Thanks for all the opinions, helped to clear my head, can you have LBA when you don't even have a camera?
Reading all your replies has helped me to make a decision. I decided to follow the advice of Kytra, go for the basic 18-55 DAL kit, look around for a thrifty "fast 50" and save up for a longer zoom. This will give me something to play and learn with, without going over my budget at all.
I just bought the camera
with 18-55 for $700 au they also gave me the DA WR instead of the DAL which is a bit of a bonus. Thank you all, I'm of to take lots of photos, search the pawn shops and save my $$
05-26-2010, 01:51 AM   #13
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Well done. You will be happy.

Look forward to see your photo on the forum.
05-26-2010, 08:52 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by kangamel Quote
I just bought the camera
with 18-55 for $700 au they also gave me the DA WR instead of the DAL which is a bit of a bonus. Thank you all, I'm of to take lots of photos, search the pawn shops and save my $$
Kinda odd that they gave you the WR since the K-x is not weathersealed!?
I think you actually paid for that lens and they probably wanted the sale too that was why they threw that in instead of the DA L.
If you sell that lens, you will have more moolah for more lenses since that is about twice to thrice more expensive than the DA L kit lens.
Enjoy!
05-26-2010, 09:18 AM   #15
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GerrL, It was my local camera shop not one of the big ones and It was a half hour before closing time when I rang them to see if they would do the kit for that price. When I got there the guy I went in and spoke to last week said he had convinced them to give me a better lens! Luckily I knew what DA and DAL meant or I might have been a bit
They musn't have had the DAL and yeah wanted the sale. I'm glad to hear that i'd get more $$ if I sell it, I was thinking that might be the case. Gotta go back tommorow because my receipt says $700 body only, so need to get a receipt for my lens. Ha Ha. If they wanna say $660 for the body, It will have to say the lens cost about $40 dollars, not a bad buy.
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