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08-09-2012, 09:14 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alizarine Quote
but among the C/N/S kit lenses, Pentax's ranks high.
Not according to dxomark.

08-09-2012, 09:50 AM   #32
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Thank you guys again so much for the advice!!
08-09-2012, 04:12 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by CB28 Quote
Here is what I got yesterday on my first time out...

ChuckB28's Album: Locust Lake 8/8/12 - PentaxForums.com
Great set, and I see nothing to worry about there. Like all cameras, lenses and general equipment, once you get used to the kit lens you'll learn how to get the best out of it. For what it is, I actually think it's a great lens, and it's one I constantly go back to when I just want to have fun with my cameras and that shows - a lot of my favourite shots have been taken using this lens. Here's one I took with it that I'm very happy with as it captured the personality of the subject and the ambience of the evening, pp'd in faststone so nothing drastic at all done to it. OK, two from the same evening.
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08-09-2012, 04:15 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Not according to dxomark.
Those scores were rated on a K20D, at 24mm with the Canon at 35mm and the Nikon at 18mm.

I'd take them with a huge grain of salt.

08-09-2012, 04:20 PM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sagitta Quote
Those scores were rated on a K20D, at 24mm with the Canon at 35mm and the Nikon at 18mm.

I'd take them with a huge grain of salt.
Yeahh, I kinda noticed that. Besides, the proof is in the pudding. I don't have the Canon or the Nikon zoom, but I do have the 18-55 zoom and I find it very capable of producing extremely nice images when I do my part. Kind of like a lot of lenses that I use.

And because mine is a WR lens I can get those really nice images in the middle of a rain storm if I am so inclined.
08-09-2012, 06:20 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sagitta Quote
Those scores were rated on a K20D, at 24mm with the Canon at 35mm and the Nikon at 18mm.
The main factor impacting those scores is camera resolution and the K20D is pretty close to the K-5 in that aspect - you can select other similar cameras from Canon and Nikon at your leisure - I just left the default choices. Also note that the score of the Canon improves on cameras with higher resolution (450D score is less than 7D), but the score of the Pentax decreases (10D is better than 20D), which seems to me to indicate that the lens cannot resolve the information that the sensor is capable to record, so if anything, it would perform even worse on the K-5 sensor.

Also, dxomark tests the lenses across the entire focal range - those 24, 35, and 18 focal lengths that you saw in the score just let you know at which focal length each lens performed best. There is plenty of data under the Measurements tab, if you want to compare performance across the focal range - I like their Field Map graphs, as they display performance across the frame, and the Global Map will give you a nice picture of things across the focal range. As usual, dxomark scores cannot capture the full picture. But the summary paints a picture where the Canon is sharper but with more CA and the Nikon is sharper with similar CA. The only distinctive aspect of the Pentax it's that it's a Pentax.

QuoteOriginally posted by Sagitta Quote
I'd take them with a huge grain of salt.
As you should take the claim that the 18-55 is better than its equivalents from other brands.
08-11-2012, 04:16 PM   #37
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Ah... The lens is actually quite sharp at f7.1

Thank you guys!!
08-11-2012, 07:13 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChuckB28 Quote
Ok dumb question here...

The 18-55 kit lens that comes with the Pentax K5 isn't the greatest lens, is it???
I haven't read all the replies but I can tell you "it depends". Many of the 18-55 do a fairly adequate job for what they are, cheap walk-around zooms. The majority seem to be at least as good as the Nikon/Canon counterparts. That said, there is a variability in different lenses. I've had 3 of these. One was pretty good all around and very good stopped down a bit and in the middle of the zoom range; one was OK but not great; and one was middling at best.

NaCl(quality varies, if you get a good copy it's a good lens; if not then not)H2O

08-11-2012, 07:50 PM   #39
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In my opinion, i think its great for the price, especially the WR version.
Be honest with yourself, are you going to make huge prints? Or are you not making prints larger than 13x19? Or will they not be printed at all and just viewed on a monitor?
Here are some Sea World shots i took with it:







08-12-2012, 07:09 AM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Not according to dxomark.
Do you think the dxomark reviews are good? I find their numbers perplexing and conclusions confusing.

For example, the DA 21 review:
"The good points of the Pentax smc DA 21mm F3.2 ED AL Limited:
Compact.
Light-weight.

Points that could be improved:
Strong vignetting in the corners.
Too-apparent chromatic aberrations.
Rather weak resolution and not particularly uniform over the field."

Ok; that's a pretty poor review; BUT, then we get to a comparison vs the DA 15, and DXO goes on to say-

"Just a small, quick comparison between the 21mm f/3.2 and the 15 mm f/4 previously analyzed: the 21mm stays ahead of the 15mm in nearly every respect except for chromatic aberrations.
Those who don’t really need a very wide-angle lens shouldn’t hesitate to choose the 21mm."

What? The DA 15 is reviewed by most people to be essentially the perfect wide angle lens. I don't own one, but by all accounts its nearly perfect. Yet, its worse than the DA 21 here.

Their review of Canon and Pentax 18-55 are pretty comparable, although the Pentax is rated slightly worse. I just don't understand their ratings; they don't seem to correct for the camera/sensor the photos are on and/or the lenses application.

Pentax lenses are rated substantially below Canon and Nikon. But additionally, Nikon lens's are rated much better than Canon lenses; and not just some; like all Nikon vs Canon. I've just never fully trusted their reviews; the photozone site has always made more sense to me; gives thought out explanations, etc. BUT, I'm open to others thoughts and that's why I wrote this post.
08-12-2012, 10:09 AM   #41
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The unfortunate fact is that none of the lens testing sites are really giving you a completely honest review. They are not incorrect, for that particular lens, but there is enough variation between lenses of the same type and brand that you would have to test a whole bunch of that type of lens to actually post a valid review. Of course that is terribly expensive as well as terribly time consuming, so no-one that I am aware of is actually willing to do that.

The flip side are those lens reviews that are conducted by the various photo forums like our own Pentaxforum. They are usually quite unscientific, and usually a bit biased, but they do give a sense of what a lens is like. At least the average is usually based on more than one lens.

In reality finding a "best" lens is a bit of a moving target. The question is, best for what? The Canon or Nikon kit zooms may or may not be better than the Pentax 18-55, I really don't know. And it is a bit academic since I don't intend to buy those cameras or their kit lenses. I own a Pentax so I am interested in Pentax lenses. Are the other Pentax zooms better than the kit lens? Probably, but they are also bigger and heavier as well. Is that important? I don't know, to me it is. I like the fact that my 18-55 is water resistant, that it is light, and that it provides good image quality in most circumstances. For my needs it is the "best." Unless I want to take pictures indoors with available light and then it is probably "the worst!"

The best way to determine how good your lens really performs is to do your own test. I have done that. That is how I know that my 18-55 is pretty decent between 35mm and 50mm, at f5.6 or f8. It isn't terrible in the other ranges so I use them as well. But I know that there are some problems that I may have to work out in post processing if I use those focal lengths or aperture settings. There are articles posted on the web that explain how to conduct a lens test. By following the steps you can determine how good your own lens really is. And your own is really the only lens you care about. However, that is a bit time consuming, and will likely cost a little money to buy the proper charts, so most people want someone else to tell them how good their lens is. We tend to be a bit lazy that way.

Voila, back to the lens testers.
08-12-2012, 01:07 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by jk333 Quote
Do you think the dxomark reviews are good?
I don't usually read them. I just check their test results and use their side-by-side comparison tools.

As for the DA 15, I wish it was as good as the hype around it, but it is not. It is a good lens, but it falls short of excellence and I found it disappointing for an optical design under the Limited line.

QuoteOriginally posted by jk333 Quote
I just don't understand their ratings
That is usually the problem. They explain everything on their site - you just need to take the time to look at what they are doing. This explains their lens scores and testing methodology and this explains their sensor scores - make sure to click next at the bottom of each page to see all the information.
08-17-2012, 06:17 AM   #43
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When I had my 18-55 WR, I found it pretty good especially at 35mm, I only found it soft at 50mm.
08-17-2012, 07:22 AM   #44
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I've been doing well with it since I got the good advice on here!!
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