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03-23-2009, 06:33 PM   #1
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2 weeks in Nicaragua, what low budget lens should I consider?

I have a k200d, 18-55 kit lens, sigma 10-20, 50mm F2 m, and a focal 200mm f4(waiting for K adapter) that i havent used yet. I have 150-250 dollars to spend and am not sure if I should get a 50- 200mm zoom variable aperture or a fixed aperture w/ a shorter focal length. I usually shoot landscapes and buildings, but would like to shoot nature and street scenes on my trip also, I'll be going in april when nicaragua will be hot and dry. 4 days camping on the beach at a turtle reserve and traveling between colonial towns and volcanoes during the rest of the weeks..Any suggestions?

03-23-2009, 07:08 PM   #2
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If you're considering the DA 50-200, I can say it's a very decent, inexpensive lens and performs well in good light.
There's one for sale in the marketplace for $125 here:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/photographers-marketplace/55112-pentax-da...ed-canada.html

I also posted about the lens here:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-your-photos/45787-da50-200-wide-open.html

GL and enjoy you're trip.
03-23-2009, 07:08 PM   #3
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The 10-20mm will serve for landscapes and the 18-55 or the 50/2 would make a decent street lens. For a budget telephoto for wildlife and nature, the two best bets would be the DA50-200 or the Tamron 70-300LD Macro. The Pentax is a fine lens with excellent image quality for the money. The Tamron also has excellent image quality but is prone to purple fringing and CA....however the bonus is you get 50% more focal length plus quite good 1:2 macro performance at the tele end. I've owned both and prefered the length and macro features of the Tamron. Plus the Tamron can be had brand new for about $150 or so.
03-23-2009, 07:13 PM   #4
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The 50-200 would most certainly fall within your budget, but if you can stretch that budget just a little more at the top end ($50 or so), I would most definitely recommend the DA55-300 for those nature shots. If you can find one used, then you may be able to get it within your original budget. If having 300mm at the long end appeals to you, but you simply can't stretch your budget any further, then take a look at the Tamron 70-300, which runs in the neighborhood of $150-175, new.

21720 Pentax SMC P-DA 55-300mm f/4.0-5.8 ED Auto Focus Telephoto Zoom Lens with Hood.
AF017P700 Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di LD 1:2 Auto Focus Macro Zoom Lens with Hood for Pentax AF, 6 Year USA Warranty

Sample pics:
Pentax smc DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED Lens Sample Photos and Specifications
Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro 1: 2 Lens Sample Photos and Specifications

HTH,
Heather

03-23-2009, 07:23 PM   #5
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I wish I could recommend the above Tamron 70-300 macro, or the equivalent Sigma. I have found both to be poor performers. Pretty poor contrast and color rendition. Probably a lot better going with either the Pentax 50-200, or if you can afford it, the DA 55-300.
03-24-2009, 04:39 PM   #6
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Thanks for the input, any older lenses w/ a fixed aperture around 100mm focal length? or am I way out of my price range?
03-24-2009, 05:25 PM   #7
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I was in Nicaragua 3 years ago, but not on vacation.

At that time I took my *ist DS w/ kit lens (18-55mm), 40mm Limited and an older FA 80-200mm. I used the 40mm most often followed by the 18-55mm and a few by the long lens I find on trips like this the wider the lens, the better. But that's just me.
03-24-2009, 06:30 PM   #8
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Any opinionsn on this lens?
It's cheap..
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/photographers-marketplace/53770-tamron-af...-4-5-6-di.html

03-29-2009, 05:31 AM   #9
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My daugher is going to Nicaragua in 6 weeks (not a vacation either). I have given here the istD , Tamrom 28-75 and Tamron 18-250. A slew of AA batteries (Energizer Lithium) , 4 2gb CF cards.

My feeling was the Tammy 28-75 should be good for some low light and it is a macro lens, the 18-250 is more of an all pupose lens.

Check the market place I have seen a few Tamron 28-75 there. Not too many Tamron / Pentax 18-250 but as as others have mentioned my others choices would be the DA 55-300 or the DA 50-200.
03-29-2009, 06:35 AM   #10
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I picked up the DA 50-200 from the marketplace for 115$ shipping included, and was very impressed with the lens...I usually shoot wide, but this will be great for street shots without getting in peoples faces...
03-29-2009, 07:15 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by richit Quote
Thanks for the input, any older lenses w/ a fixed aperture around 100mm focal length? or am I way out of my price range?
Can't go wrong with lens.

KEH Camera: Pentax Manual Focus - Fixed Focal Lengths - 135 F3.5 SMC M (49) 35MM SLR MANUAL FOCUS TELEPHOTO LENS
03-29-2009, 10:30 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by richit Quote
Thanks for the input, any older lenses w/ a fixed aperture around 100mm focal length? or am I way out of my price range?
The M135/3.5 that Matt recommended is a fine choice, and it's quite cheap. I have it and like it, but for my purposes (mostly concert photography), I often prefer something a bit shorter and faster, and given that you specifically asked about 100mm, I would like to put a plug in for the M100/2.8, which is also in your price range (usually around $100-$150). Also, there is an M120/2.8 available on the marketplace that could be a great compromise between those two focal lengths.

Of course, even 135mm isn't *that* long, even with the "crop factor" - it's not for wildlife. But I find I don't tend to shoot over 135mm very often except for wildlife, and given that you can always crop, I personally wouldn't feel too limited by having only something in the 100-135 range as your long lens. Depend on whether you value the large aperture over the convenience of the zoom.
04-03-2009, 04:31 PM   #13
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If you can find one, the SMC-F 70-210mm f4-5.6 is pretty good. Should be possible to find it used for $100 to $150.
It focuses faster than my FA 50mm f/1.4 and has pretty nice bokeh as well. Here are some samples:








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