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10-08-2011, 06:45 PM   #1
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1st Year Gear

This is my first year as a Photography student. I've put togeather the following gear. Much of it is inexpensive but for the first couple of years or so I HOPE this will do. If there are any accessories or gear that anyone suggests I need or perhaps I should get something different, please let me know. Hopefully this will show me the ropes. So far my instructor has said that "I'm not as familiar with Pentax". He's a Nikon guy but he doesn't object to me using different gear. I'm also using Purosol cleaners as directed.

Pentax K2000 Camera Body
DA-L 3.5-5.6 18-55mm AL
FA 3.5-6.6 28-80mm
FA 3.5-5.6 28-90mm
FA 4.7-5.6 80-200mm
FA-J 4.5-5.8 75-300mm AL

10-08-2011, 06:48 PM   #2
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a lot of those lenses redundantly cover the same focal lengths, you can probably get away with just half of em imo
10-08-2011, 06:53 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by adpo Quote
a lot of those lenses redundantly cover the same focal lengths, you can probably get away with just half of em imo
Yep, lot of the same.

Maybe get a Zenitar 16mm manual-focus fisheye. I think they go for under $200 used.
10-08-2011, 06:54 PM   #4
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looks like LBA stuck early. Do you have a sturdy Tripod ,and something to protect the equipment a good case or cases. Other than that your accessories and other lenses would depend on what you are shooting .

10-08-2011, 07:03 PM   #5
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I have a Nikon / Manfrotto 848 Medium Tripod. For why those lenses, I'll say that the 28-80mm is the only one I can't really justify owning anymore. I bought it inexpensive. Here's my thoughts otherwise:

18-55mm - Good widefield.
28-90mm - Macro / Portrait Lense
80-200mm - Descent hand-hold wildlife / outdoor lense. Longest lense can be used without a tripod (my experience)
75-300mm - Requires tripod or Monopod at high magnification

I carry it all in the Pentax sling bag. It's light, but has enough padding.

Last edited by ScreamingIdiot; 10-08-2011 at 07:06 PM. Reason: Forgot to mention the bag
10-08-2011, 07:05 PM   #6
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You have a lot of overlapping lenses. Id pare down on some of the overlapping and get some primes or a solid flash unit.
10-08-2011, 07:12 PM   #7
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You need at least one fast lens. Ditch 2 of the zooms and buy a 50mm MF prime or the DA35mm f2.4
10-08-2011, 07:16 PM   #8
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I've had my eye on a DA35mm. If I can ask, whats the application for that bad boy?

10-08-2011, 07:20 PM   #9
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You need a fast prime. 50mm f/1.4 or f/1.7 could be a manual focus. That is also a better portrait lens than the zooms, better dof control.

You also don't mention any flash gear. I would assume you will need that for class???
10-08-2011, 07:21 PM   #10
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We haven't required a flash yet, believe it or not. But one will be necessary soon. I'll buy it next month.
10-08-2011, 07:56 PM   #11
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Yes ditch 2 or 3 of those slow variable aperture zooms and get a fast prime and a flash.
10-08-2011, 08:29 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by ScreamingIdiot Quote
I've had my eye on a DA35mm. If I can ask, whats the application for that bad boy?
Its main application is as a 'standard' lens on Pentax DSLRs (and other so-called 'APS-C' DSLRs). Basically a 35mm lens on a Pentax DSLR has roughly the same application as a 50mm lens on a film camera or a 'full frame' DSLR (Canon 5D, Nikon D700 etc.). However if you're actually studying photography then (as others have said) what you likely need most is a 'fast' lens (i.e. f1.4 or f1.7). These are cheapest and easiest to obtain as 50mm primes (mainly because a 50mm fast prime was - believe it or not - the 'kit lens' that came with most cameras for decades).

Given that we don't know what exactly your course will be covering, I think a really useful idea would be to ask your instructor what Nikon lenses he'd suggest. If you post that here, we can then point you to equivalent Pentax lenses.

Last edited by MrCynical; 10-08-2011 at 08:30 PM. Reason: Typo
10-08-2011, 08:59 PM   #13
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You are missing manual focus/depth of field,low light, and macro capability! I suggest:
A pentax 28 manual focus lens--e.g., 35mm f3.5 (super takumar or SMC Takumar, or an SMC A lens) to use with manual focusing--including zone focusing--to learn about depth of field. It is a good walk around lens for street and nature.
Also a pentax M 50mm f1.7 (manual focus again) and a 2x vivitar macro teleconverter--a good portrait, available light, and macro lens combination.
Used from reliable source (e.g., KEH) likely less than $200.00
10-08-2011, 09:02 PM   #14
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I meant to say either a 28 f3.5 or 35 f 3.5 (likely the former being better given you should also have a 50 mm).
10-08-2011, 10:56 PM   #15
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If you can handle manual focus, some good lenses to look for include:

* Zenitar 16/2.8, slightly fishy on APS-C, nicely wide and fast
* Vivitar 28/2 or f/2.5 or f/2.8, ideal 'normal' field of view
* Fast Fifty: 50-55mm f/1.4-1.8, great short tele for portraiture
* Mid-macro, 90-100-105mm f/2.8, all are extremely sharp

I have accumulated many many lenses, but I'm a bit picky with zooms. In your boat, I would ditch the 28-80 and 80-200. I usually carry a Tamron 10-24 (bought discounted), DA10-17 fisheye, DA18-250 superzoom, maybe the very cheap+sharp F35-70, and a few old manual primes: 24/2 or 28/2; 50/1.4 or 55/1.4; 100mm f/2.8 or f/3.5; something for macro. Most of these were cheap. They all continually teach me new ways to see.
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