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11-02-2010, 08:47 AM   #1
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Is one 18-200mm better than two separate kit lenses? Warranty?

Hi

I am considering getting the Pentax K-X camera and have been learning the world of DSLR and getting used to the fact that there are different lenses. I was wondering if it would be better for me if I would buy a single lens with a wider range to go along with the body (such as the Tamron AF 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 XR Di II LD Aspherical IF) then getting the Pentax with the kit 18-50mm and a separate lens with 50-200mm?

Is there a tradeoff for getting just this one lens? Right now the lens after rebate is only $180, so if I get the body for $$440, this seems like a fair deal.

Also, is the Pentax warranty voided if I buy the camera from a non-authorized dealer such as Portable Guy on amazon?

Thanks

11-02-2010, 08:53 AM   #2
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The tradeoff is that the image quality will be lower, and your max aperture slower. In turn, you only have to carry around one lens.

No, the warranty shouldn't be void as long as the lens is new.

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11-02-2010, 08:58 AM   #3
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How about the warranty on the body if I buy it from a non-authorized dealer?
11-02-2010, 10:46 AM   #4
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This happened to me this past weekend.

I was on a hike and there were times when I wanted to use my 18-50 for a wide angle shot for a cliff view then use my 50-200 for a bird shot or to shoot something specific further away from me and out of reach from walking.

It was kind of a pain to switch lenses every 10 - 15min. Then again, it was even more of a pain when I had my k1000 takng shots with a 24mm at the same time. In the end I was happy that I took all of my equipment, it was my first time out with my 50-200mm and I was testing the k1000 to see if it still functioned properly. Actually my real complaint is that I don't have a back pack but instead just a bag; not really suited for hiking.

The point I am trying to get at is that it depends on you, your skill set, your priorities. I purchased a K100D this past spring because best buy sold it as a refurb for $200 without a lense - i already had lenses (later i bought the 18-55 and i just purchased the 50-200 last week). So my camera has been discontinued for a number of years now - what do i care though? For me, my shots are not going to look that much better with a high quality professional top of the line, state of the art, camera; i'm just starting out with an SLR. The fact that this camera was considered a mid-range camera in it's day is good enough for me.

Like I said, depends on your priorities - if I could trade in my 18-55mm plus my 50-200mm for an 18-200mm - I'd probably do so for the convinience; especially considering my wish lists consists of yet another lense, the 10-17mm. Maybe in 5 years I'd say differently, but now? My skillset doesnt see a difference; and my skillset makes my opinion worth less than .02.

Here is what I understand to be true:
-a prime lense will always produce a better photo than a zoom lense set to the same focal length/f stop.
-a zoom lense will always be inferior to a prime lense set to the same focal length/f stop.

Those two points considered, will you really see that much of a difference in quality between two different zoom lenses in the same DA line?

A gas station 1 mile away is $2.99 per gallon.
A gas station 5 miles away is $2.79 per gallon.

which gas station do you go to?


Last edited by Capslock118; 11-02-2010 at 10:52 AM.
11-02-2010, 10:58 AM   #5
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Many people have tried both options:
single super-zoom lens
multiple small-zoom or prime lenses

Some prefer super-zoom some prefer short-zoom and/or prime. I prefer short-zoom or primes. I think super-zoom lens do have a place for people who can not afford too many lenses or opted for convenience. I care more for IQ.

I generally find super-zoom compromise too much on quality, again just my humble opinion.
11-02-2010, 11:09 AM   #6
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Just think about when you need more reach like 300mm ?
11-02-2010, 11:09 AM   #7
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There are different type of superzooms. The Tamron 18-200 and Sigma 18-200 are older lenses. The Pentax 18-250/Tamron 18-250 have a much better reputation although they are hard to get. The other alternative is the Sigma 18-250 OS-HSM K-mount, but it is dear.

I have the DA18-250mm and it is an superb lens in its own category. Like any zoom, it does have some distortion, but the convenience is a 'hell' of an advantage. Another advantage is the lighter package when you hike in the bush.

Compared to the 2 kit lenses, I value very much the DA18-250mm for the convenience, the absence of lens swapping (very annoying when you miss a shot because you are trying to swap lenses) and the lighter system.

In terms of warranty, I purchased my K-7 from a authorised dealer and my DA18-250mm has second hand from www.keh.com. There is no issue in terms of the warranty on the body.

Food for thoughts...
11-02-2010, 11:23 AM   #8
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Thank you everybody for great comments.

I was wondering if I should get the kit 18-50 anyways since without it I only get a $50-$60 discount. Is having this second lens much better for indoors/portraits/family pictures than the 18-200? Is there a value of owning it?

Just starting into this world, my realm will be family photos, vacations, kids sports, nature.

11-02-2010, 11:23 AM   #9
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I have a Tamron 28-200 digital zoom that I bought with my *ist. Right now it's pretty much been the only lens I've used on my *ist because I am waiting on getting paid for some graphics work to be able to buy an official Pentax adapter. So far it's not been too bad and I do find it very handy to be able to stay with one lens and not to have to switch out all the time. That being said I think I'd still like to get an 18-55MM and a 55-300MM set up at some point.

The 28-200MM Tamron isn't bad but it's still not quite as nice as I'd like. I am finding the Tamron just a bit soft at the far end of the zoom and 200MM just isn't quite enough lens for me in terms of my nature work. Some of my non-digital lenses are actually better.

Ideally, if I could find a better quality digital lens that went from 18MM-300MM/400MM that would be my idea of the perfect all in one lens for on the go work.

Still, there is something to be said for being able to walk out the door with only one lens that covers most of what you want to do. I don't mind changing lenses really, but I find I really like the convenience of not having to go there. I don't want the Tamron to be my only lens though. Definitely not.
11-02-2010, 11:48 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by keano016 Quote
Hi

I am considering getting the Pentax K-X camera and have been learning the world of DSLR and getting used to the fact that there are different lenses. I was wondering if it would be better for me if I would buy a single lens with a wider range to go along with the body (such as the Tamron AF 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 XR Di II LD Aspherical IF) then getting the Pentax with the kit 18-50mm and a separate lens with 50-200mm?

Is there a tradeoff for getting just this one lens? Right now the lens after rebate is only $180, so if I get the body for $$440, this seems like a fair deal.

Also, is the Pentax warranty voided if I buy the camera from a non-authorized dealer such as Portable Guy on amazon?

Thanks
I would go with the 2 lens kit but the 55-300 instead of the 50-200. The 55-300 is generally accepted as a much better lens than the 200mm.

Having said that, I bought my Kx a while back and only got the 18-55 lens. I now regret not getting the 55-300 to go with it. So I bought the very lens you are thinking about getting, the Tamron 18-200. I like the lens because it is perfect for traveling light and the IQ surprised me. It was much better then I expected (but not quite as good as the 55-300).

So you really can't go wrong either way. I would suggest you weigh your pros and cons of your options because we can give you suggestions but it really comes down to the fact that every shooter has different likes/wants.
11-02-2010, 12:07 PM   #11
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Great input, once again. Can you maybe elaborate little bit more on where you see the 18-200 not be as good as the 55-300?

I have seen some pictures online where the 18-200 is not as sharp around the edges, is there other issues that I should worry about?
11-02-2010, 12:10 PM   #12
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You can buy separate lenses that are better than the 18-200 or 18-250, but you can also buy worse. So, the quantity is not the issue.
11-02-2010, 01:18 PM   #13
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After reading here and looking at photos I decided on the K-x with 18-55 + 55-300. As has been said here already, the 300 has a much better reputation than the 200 and the kit, about 2 months ago, was something like $10 more for the 300 which made it a no brainer for me.

I've eyed the 18-200s but I find myself using the 200-300 range a good bit so the 18-200 wouldn't really get me much as I'd still be swapping out for the extra 100mm of reach.

P.S. My goal is to augment them with older prime lenses.

Last edited by Docrwm; 11-02-2010 at 02:26 PM.
11-02-2010, 02:02 PM   #14
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With zoom lenses, there are always weak areas. Super zooms often are soft on both ends and strongest in the middle. In addition, they are usually pretty slow to focus and also have a smaller maximum aperture at the long end. For instance, the Tamron 18-200 f3.5-6.3 is about a stop slower at 200mm compared to the DA 55-300, which is at f4.5 at 200 mm. That will mean two things: one is that you will tend to battle slow shutter speeds in poor light and the second is that to get decent sharpness, you will probably have to stop the lens down even more.

That said, as walk around lenses in decent light, super zooms work pretty well. The question is one of convenience versus "ultimate image quality." There is not a right or wrong answer.
11-02-2010, 02:41 PM   #15
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My $0.00 for what it is worth. I bought the Pentax DA 18-250mm for an all-in-one solution when I am travelling and am glad I did. When traveling by air, I always go very light and am able to just take the camera with lens attached and leave most everything else at home. Because I never change lenses, I don't need to worry about dust or cleaning when away from home. I tend to stay in the short end for most shots but occasionally reach out to 200-250mm and the DA does not limit me much other than a stop or so of speed.

That said, when I am NOT traveling by air, I almost never use the 18-250. I have other lenses that give me marginally better performance at the cost of less versatility and occasional change-outs.

My point is this. The choice of superzoom versus multiple, shorter zoom or prime lenses comes down pretty much to your shooting style. If light, carry-on ready compactness is important to you, I'd say go with the best super you can afford. If not, then I'd go for the highest quality suite of shorter zooms or primes to get the best combination of speed and sharpness.

Last edited by abmj; 11-02-2010 at 10:44 PM.
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