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10-31-2010, 06:54 AM   #1
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completely new - buying kit, or body and lens's ?

hiya, I am looking to buy Pentax K-r .. I want to take family portraits and kid shots, as well as the occasional landscape. I have no knowledge of lenses whatsoever. A lot of my photos will be used as base ideas for oil paintings and pencil portraits, as well as the general keepers for family stuff.
My query is .. with the Pentax K-r ... I can purchase the twin lens kit, or a body and two lenses I guess - what are BEST beginner lenses for portraits and general photography? Thanking you in advance .

10-31-2010, 07:56 AM   #2
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I'd say stick with the kit lenses at first since you're a beginner.
The 18-55 and I suggest the 55-300 if you wish telephoto.
It'll give you some experience. One thing, try to keep track of the focal lengths:
Once in a while, try to shoot with your zooms without changing the focal length.
For example, a whole day at 35mm. It will give you an idea of what shooting with a prime lens is like.

You will find what focal lengths you're comfortable with.

When you have more of a clear idea of what you enjoy, you can start looking at lenses to maximize your image quality.
The two kit lens kit will give you 90% of the focal lengths you would ever require. Later on, you can go ultra-wide or extremely long if this is your interest.
10-31-2010, 08:23 AM   #3
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Get the twin lens kit- it's a steal and is really everything that a beginner needs!
10-31-2010, 09:40 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Get the twin lens kit- it's a steal and is really everything that a beginner needs!
+1 The Pentax kit lenses are pretty darned good.

10-31-2010, 09:42 AM   #5
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The two lenses that come in the kit are the 18-55 and then either the 50-200 or the 55-300. The 55-300 is the better lens on the long side.

For the 18-55 kit lens, here is a link to a thread that address that lens

These two lenses cover the vast majority of the focal lengths you will probably ever need. Pentax has some of the better kit lenses as compared to the other camera makes. 18mm is wide angle, 300 is telephoto. For the most part, 300mm is the top end. Beyond that the lenses are large, heavy and really need a tripod and are specialty lenses. They also start costing a fortune. Here are a couple of comparison of various focal lengths.
Within the picture, there is data embedded (EXIF data) that describes all the conditions of the picture from the camera's point of view - date, time, all the settings of the camera, focus length, lens mounted on the camera, aperture, etc. Most of the picture utilities can read this information and it is very informative. Also there are other programs that list the information that after a while, you can start to see a trend in how you take pictures. For instance all the short focal lengths (or wide angle) or telephoto, etc. If or when you feel the need for another lens, this can help you figure out how you take most of your pictures. Here is an example...
10-31-2010, 11:54 AM   #6
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The kit seems pretty good and covers most of the range that the majority of forum members suggest. See the poll on kit design in the lens forum that I am running at the moment
10-31-2010, 12:03 PM   #7
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I agree with the twin lens kit for you as well - they're a very good start, but if you are keen to invest in a very decent prime (fixed focal length - i.e. not a zoom) lens for portraits it would have to be the FA 50 f/1.4, which is the best value for money for an autofocus lens with excellent low-light and background blurring capabilities. If you're not sure what I mean, have a read on the basics of photography: the exposure triad - aperture, shutter speed and ISO. There are good tutorials in the articles section of this forum.
10-31-2010, 08:19 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Get the twin lens kit- it's a steal and is really everything that a beginner needs!
+2
If you are new to digital photography and dSLR, get the twin kit lenses. They are excellent values. And you can always upgrade your lenses later.

11-02-2010, 06:08 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by CHIXINGA Quote
hiya, I am looking to buy Pentax K-r .. I want to take family portraits and kid shots, as well as the occasional landscape. I have no knowledge of lenses whatsoever. A lot of my photos will be used as base ideas for oil paintings and pencil portraits, as well as the general keepers for family stuff.
My query is .. with the Pentax K-r ... I can purchase the twin lens kit, or a body and two lenses I guess - what are BEST beginner lenses for portraits and general photography? Thanking you in advance .
Honestly I don't think there would be big advantages to you to buying in the k-r kit vs. k-x, and you would save significant money on the k-x. I don't own either one, but I'm still happy with my k100 images. You can always upgrade the body if you feel you're outgrowing what you have, or have a new requirement.

Paul
11-05-2010, 05:33 AM   #10
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kit lenses are definitely underrated. if youre new to all this, the 18-55 can probably do pretty much everything you would want for quite some time.
11-05-2010, 05:45 AM   #11
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+1 for the 18-55 & 55-300 kit. These are very good for the price and having worked with them for a while you should have a good idea what (if anything) you'd need next lenswise.
11-05-2010, 06:23 AM   #12
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I've seen the K-x kit, which included the 18-55 and 55-300 DaL lenses for as low as $629 in Amazon. I'm not sure what the current price is on this kit but I own the storm trooper Kx and think it's a phenomenal camera. At this sort of K-x kit pricing, I think one really has to consider if the additional cost of stepping up to the K-r is worth it. There's no correct answer here, it's really based on what you really want in a camera (feature-wise) and your budget but I don't think many would disagree that at $629 or so, the K-x kit is one heck of a good bang for the buck.
11-05-2010, 06:46 AM   #13
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And welcome to the forum.
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