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07-16-2016, 11:39 AM   #1
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Please help complete my kit lens

I am a newbie photographer here in the Philippines with no skill at all but is determined to achieved my life long dream to become one of the best photographer here in the Philippines using only Pentax camera and lenses. Even though Pentax is assemble here in the Philippines it is not as popular as its rival Canon and Nikon. Mostly here wants Canon and Nikon for their camera and it is scarce to see people here carying Pentax camera. I am proud of my new Pentax K3 because I knew that in terms of features my k3 can rival even the best of canikon has to offer. I really want other person here in our country for Pentax to be known. That is why I am determined to learn and master the skill of photography using only Pentax camera and lenses. Can someone help me setup my perfect kit lenses, right now I owned the 18-135 mm and 35 mm 2.4 DA AL. I want to shoot in landscape, and portraiture and even wildlife. I knew that it will be a huge investment in my part to purchase all that lenses that you will suggest but I am determined to have it if it will help me achieved my dream. Little by little I will step forward so that in the near future I can have my complete kit that could help me capture picture in all given situations. Thank you for your help.

07-16-2016, 12:08 PM - 1 Like   #2
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Hi, first of all best of luck in your endeavor, it's a tough one! ;-)

You already have a nice set, with a very good all-purpose lens, and a low-light normal. That should be more than sufficient for general photography and landscapes.

In time, you'll want to add a portrait lens, which could be a fast 50 or something more particular like a 77mm LTD. Much depends on personal preferences.

As for wildlife, that specialty is a bottomless pit for your money... I'll defer to people more versed in that art.

For now, I suggest that you just go out and shoot, then post your best pics and get as much advice as you can in order to improve your technique and perfect your artistic vision. Go get 'em!
07-16-2016, 12:22 PM   #3
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Dear Malaya Mabuhay and welcome to the pentax forum! I think you made a good choice with Pentax. There are a number of other Pentaxforum members from the Philippines (not me - although I have been there a number of times). You have a good set of lens to start and you may want to take a number of shots with them first before deciding what lens you want to add next. If you find that you are taking a lot of photos as 18 and are unhappy with the quality or what to go wider, you might want to start with a landscape lens. Similarly if you find that 135 is not enough, you may wan to get a telephoto first. You have a lot of options on lens, including older models which work very well and are not expensive. I would suggest looking at the reviews of various lens in the forum once you determine your most pressing need and budget. Main thing is to take a lot of pictures and enjoy.
07-16-2016, 12:46 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by LensBeginner Quote
Hi, first of all best of luck in your endeavor, it's a tough one! ;-)

You already have a nice set, with a very good all-purpose lens, and a low-light normal. That should be more than sufficient for general photography and landscapes.

In time, you'll want to add a portrait lens, which could be a fast 50 or something more particular like a 77mm LTD. Much depends on personal preferences.

As for wildlife, that specialty is a bottomless pit for your money... I'll defer to people more versed in that art.

For now, I suggest that you just go out and shoot, then post your best pics and get as much advice as you can in order to improve your technique and perfect your artistic vision. Go get 'em!
Than you very much for your great advise it really help me think enough. It is maybe the lack of skill now that I feel I am less even though I have this lens in my disposal. I will start now by planning to attend workshop that will help me improve my skill and perhaps one day I can be as good as any talented photographer out there.Thank you very much again, it is really a tough endeavor but life is hard compare to what..

07-16-2016, 12:50 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by am1wayfarer Quote
Dear Malaya Mabuhay and welcome to the pentax forum! I think you made a good choice with Pentax. There are a number of other Pentaxforum members from the Philippines (not me - although I have been there a number of times). You have a good set of lens to start and you may want to take a number of shots with them first before deciding what lens you want to add next. If you find that you are taking a lot of photos as 18 and are unhappy with the quality or what to go wider, you might want to start with a landscape lens. Similarly if you find that 135 is not enough, you may wan to get a telephoto first. You have a lot of options on lens, including older models which work very well and are not expensive. I would suggest looking at the reviews of various lens in the forum once you determine your most pressing need and budget. Main thing is to take a lot of pictures and enjoy.
Thanks to you all, It is a great help for me to clear my mind as to what I should focus on right now. I must definitely believe to my current lenses and use them as much as I could and learned from them. After all, it is me, in my hands, these lenses of mine will become great.
07-16-2016, 01:00 PM   #6
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Yup, practice until you discover you are limited by your gear, and only then maybe look for more lenses. If you need them.

At the moment, if you would like a (relatively) inexpensive wildlife lens, get any of the 55-300 versions
Or, the more "pro" lenses, the DA* 300 f/4, which can be used in conjunction wit the HD DA 1.4x rear convertor to create a 420mm f/5.6
Or, the D-FA 150-450
Both options are much more expensive.

Here is a Pentax Forums article on lens choices, but it is a bit outdated, and does not include the new D-FA zoom lenses:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/articles/gear-guides/recommended-gear-2015.html
07-16-2016, 01:50 PM   #7
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Welcome to the Forum and good luck in your quest. Your current lenses are quite well thought of. You can do a lot with them, especially coupled with the K3. I would be in no hurry to acquire more lenses, until I have shot with what you have and have and gained some more experience - which would guide you to what you should get next. This approach will save a lot of money in the long run. I was on a lens a year plan while I was putting our sons through school. As time passes, your lens selection will change, so acquiring across a time span helps you only buy what you need. It also helps determine what you need, but it will help you figure out how to use what you have in more ways that are immediately apparent.

Having said that there are techniques that can help extend your current lenses - through free software utilities. For instance...
  • Stitching - taking overlapping images (by about a third) and then using Microsoft ICE (a free download) makes any lens a wide angle lens. It has the advantage of rather trying to squish a lot of view on to your sensor, you are actually making the sensor larger (in a sense).
  • Focus Stacking - This helps with adding depth of field to a wide variety of image types - macro to landscapes. Take a look at Zerne Stacker.
This Forum is great for finding ways to solve problems (rather than running out and buying more gear). But there is also Google and YouTube for finding ways around of shooting scenes that your first though of is I need another new lens.


Last edited by interested_observer; 07-16-2016 at 03:22 PM.
07-16-2016, 02:56 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
I would be in no hurry to acquire more lenses,
that.

07-16-2016, 03:30 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Malaya Quote
Than you very much for your great advise it really help me think enough. It is maybe the lack of skill now that I feel I am less even though I have this lens in my disposal. I will start now by planning to attend workshop that will help me improve my skill and perhaps one day I can be as good as any talented photographer out there.Thank you very much again, it is really a tough endeavor but life is hard compare to what..
There are also online photography classes - for free... It does not matter where it is - it's ONLINE!!! The first link is for a university course (beginners level - which end of the camera do I look through) and I believe they start over every month (and you can take it as many times as you wish). The second link you can start at anytime...For specific topics, there are plenty of youtube videos to get you going on the basics. Search for the topics you are interested in.

Last edited by interested_observer; 07-16-2016 at 05:18 PM.
07-16-2016, 05:58 PM   #10
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You can do effective landscape and portraits with your 18-135. The 35 you can use if you find you do not need as much range in both landscape or portraits. You have lenses which will give you a lot of results that you can learn from. Going out and shooting provides learning itself, along with the manual as a reference. If you want to shoot telephoto for wildlife, I would recommend a zoom whose long end would be at least 400 mm or more, which sometimes can be found at reasonable prices. Practicing with your current equipment will help you understand what you may need and really want to decide upon getting in the future. If you shoot wildlife, silent AF is a characteristic you will want. Good luck and happy shooting.
07-16-2016, 07:55 PM   #11
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If you want to spend money on lenses, I recommend the DA*16-50/2.8 and the DA*50-135/2.8. Keep the DA35/2.4.
The DA18-135 is great to learn on and is probably the best "walk-around" lens anyone could ask for, but I wouldn't call it a prize winner.
When you get that craving for prime lenses, you can't go wrong with the DA Limiteds. Still don't get rid of that DA35/2.4.
07-16-2016, 10:37 PM   #12
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For landscape work, depending on how wide you want to go & what your budget is, you can't go wrong on getting either a Tamron's 10-24mm ($499)*, Sigma's 10-20mm ($449)*, or Pentax's 12-24mm ($696)*

*Current prices on Adorama.com
07-17-2016, 01:15 PM   #13
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The DA 50-1.8 is an excellent lens and not expensive, a ready made portrait lens. I have one of the first Sigma 10-20 lenses which has the extra angle of view for some landscapes. Don't forget, longer lenses can also be useful for landscapes, the 55-300 is well liked and has a good range. Save buying the more expensive lenses for later in your career.
07-17-2016, 04:39 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentasonic49 Quote
The DA 50-1.8 is an excellent lens and not expensive, a ready made portrait lens. I have one of the first Sigma 10-20 lenses which has the extra angle of view for some landscapes. Don't forget, longer lenses can also be useful for landscapes, the 55-300 is well liked and has a good range. Save buying the more expensive lenses for later in your career.
This is excellent advice. Get the 55-300 to accompany your 18-135 and DA 35 and you already have a very good and wide-ranging kit to learn with. You could add some cheap manual focus primes to complement the set if you like. You might need a flash as well. And shoot in RAW and work on post-processing. Work hard to develop your skills - it's skill, not gear, that makes a photographer.

Your interests are wide-ranging. Over time you will probably develop a particular interest in one area: landscape, portraits, street, macro, wildlife or whatever. That is the time to look for premium specialty gear.
10-01-2016, 02:00 PM   #15
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Thank you to all of you. I really appreciate your advise for me.. I am really getting much more excited to learn a lot from my camera and lenses after reading all your message. Thanks again guys. Maraming Salamat = Thank you very much! in Filipino language.
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