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04-03-2009, 12:32 PM   #16
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Has anybody around here used that new 15mm prime?

I am drooling myself...

Jason

QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
"Wide angle" is just what it sounds like: it takes in wide angle of the scene your are looking at. On the lens that came with the camera, 18mm is the "wide angle" end. 18mm is the "focal length" of the lens at that setting; you can read that number right on the side of the lens. Anything less than around 24mm is considered wide angle, but the shorter the focal length, the wider the angle.

"Telephoto" is the opposite of wide angle - it takes in a much narrower view of the scene, thus making obejcts appear larger in the picture. On the lens that came with the camera, 55mm is the telephoto end. That's not "much" telephoto, though - its consider "short telephoto". You have to get past 100mm or so before things start getting to "medium" telephoto range, and people shooting wildfile regular use lenses that are over 300mm in focal length.

Somewhere around 33mm (give or take a few mm) is what it considered "normal" - neither wide angle nor telephoto.

"Zoom" is the ability for one lens to change its focal length. The lens that came with the camera is a zoom, since it changes from 18 to 55, and includes all focal lengths between. Probably every lens you've ever used is a zoom. Zoom is *not* the same as telephoto - There are zooms that go from, for instance, 12-24 - which is to say, from *extremely* wide angle 12mm) to "sort of wide angle" (24mm), but never make it to "normal" territory, much less telephoto. It's a common mistake to say "zoom" when you mean "telephoto", but the two words have nothing to do with each other.

Not all lenses are zooms. Imagining gluing your lens so it's stuck as 55mm - now it's a "prime", which is a lens that has only one focal length. There are wide primes (like the new 15mm), normal primes (like the DA35), short telephoto primes (like the DA70), and long telephoto primes (like the DA*200).


04-03-2009, 12:49 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by alderfall Quote
Has anybody around here used that new 15mm prime?

I am drooling myself...

Jason
not available yet. PentaxWebstore PENTAX DA 15mm f4 Limited Lens
04-03-2009, 03:19 PM   #18
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Not in the US, perhaps, but several people have purchased them in Europe and have posted about their experiences on dpreview.com

Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 04-13-2009 at 09:32 AM.
04-03-2009, 04:59 PM   #19
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I shot a couple of frames with one at PMA. Its tiny-ness and Limited build quality easily makes up for it's lack of speed. It would be unbelieveable at 12mm

04-05-2009, 01:12 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by summatusmentis Quote
so I like the concept of an additional 55-250 lens (numbers might be wrong), mostly I'm with 'macro'ing with the current kit lens. I've basically been bouncing back and forth between wide-angle and telephoto (or whatever zoom lenses are called).

At this point, I'm worried about money I also don't know anything about manual focus, but I appreciate the suggestions. Would an additional 55-250mm lens cost a lot?
If you want to get macro performance along with good telephoto performance and keep the money under control, look at a Tamron 70-300mm LD Macro lens. It is quite good at the long ends and gives you true macro (well, 1:2 at least) from 180mm to 300mm. It is also very reasonably priced, about $150 new and sometimes can be found used for under $100. The only down side is it does have some purple fringing in contrasty situations, but other than that, it is an excellent value for the money.
04-06-2009, 12:57 PM   #21
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Chiming in

Sorry to chime in on another post but my situation is simialr. Not really a photo buff but more of a hobbyist. I have a k110d body with the 18-55 that came with it. I find myself shooting more indoor shots low light.. I absolutely love to zoom. I want a inexpensive (not cheap) lens that will give me some good candid shots of say.. my son playing basketball.. or aunt singing in the choir.. from across the room nice and close up. Usually not in a well lit place. If that is asking too much or too totally things in photography then give the best for each scenario.

What I do not understand is that my kids $100 point and shoot does so well, I just want to get the effect of the SLR and still get memorable images. I know that SLR is better than point and shoot... I just need the glass to prove it.

Thanks

04-06-2009, 02:01 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by shooin Quote
I want a inexpensive (not cheap) lens that will give me some good candid shots of say.. my son playing basketball.. or aunt singing in the choir.. from across the room nice and close up. Usually not in a well lit place. If that is asking too much or too totally things in photography then give the best for each scenario.
That is indeed impossible, unless you are using a tripod. The fastest zoom you are going to get will be f/2.8. The best one for IQ, that will let you get a shot from across the room or to a player on the court is the DA* 50-135/2.8. That's nice and flexible but will cost £530.

It still won't be so great for inside a dimly lit room. You can crank up the ISO to 1600 which helps freeze action. But getting focus can be a problem.

You can get two stops faster with a prime lens, and for a lot less money. The FA 50/1.4 is £155. It won't have the reach, but you can get used to cropping a lot.

As for p'n's being better... they may have the zoom range but that just means you can take a crappy photo from a greater distance. Their IQ and light handling cannot be compared to an SLR.
04-06-2009, 02:52 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by shooin Quote
I absolutely love to zoom.
I suspect what you really mean is, you absolutely love longer focal lengths - eg, using your 18-55 toward the 55mm end. "Zoom" is the ability to *change* focal lengths, and could just as well mean shooting at the 18mm end. Longer focal lengths (aka telephoto) are what allow you to get closeups of people across the room. You lens only goes to 55mm, which isn't very long. The P&S cameras you are comparing against probably go to the equivalent of 100, 200 or even 300 or so depending on the camera. This allows them to get much more "closeup" pictures. So what you need is a lens with longer focal lengths. Doesn't necessarily have to be a zoom, though - often the cheapest way to get a long telephoto lens that works well in low light is to get a lens that has only a single focal length.

In order to work well in low light, you need a large aperture - meaning the lens opening must be large in diameter. That means it must have a low "f-stop" - typically f/2.8 or lower is considered good for low light.

In order to get a telephoto *zoom* lens that can do f/2.8, you'll need to spend well over $500 - eg, for the DA*50-135 that goes from 50mm (right about where your 18-55 leaves off) and goes up to 135mm. But you can get a lens that is just 135mm - without the ability to also zoom back to 50mm - for well under $100 if you don't mind focusing manually (which is often the only way to go anyhow in low light). The Pentax A135/2.8 might be just the ticket for you. It's long been discontinued, but is pretty easy to find used in the marketplace forum here, on Ebay, KEH.com, and other places.


Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 04-13-2009 at 09:33 AM.
04-12-2009, 09:17 PM   #24
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fwiw, I ended up going with an original k mount, the SMC f4 45-125mm MF. It's a little weird not having the digital stuff, but I'll play with it. It was $50 on ebay :-D

I'm gonna keep looking for a nice indoor lens, ideally with some zoom range, but not necessarily, I may just pick up a couple of primes.
04-13-2009, 02:32 PM   #25
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Sounds like you are unhappy with the zoom or telephoto capability of the kit lens. I've been using the Tamron 18-250mm as my walk about lens and have been quite pleased with it. Its lightweight and reasonable quality, but is not particularly cheap ($400-$500). For a less expensive tele zoom you may find a 70-300mm Tamron at a good used price ($100) or a 70-200mm in that range. Two lenses to cover the 18-250mm range is definitely cheaper.

http://public.fotki.com/waynelr6/tamron-18-250mm---p/ some examples from 18-250
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