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12-08-2009, 03:07 PM   #1
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Purchasing a DSLR soon ~ suggestion on lenses for my shooting style

Well, after a couple months of reading on beginner/prosumer dslr's I think I am finally ready to make my first puchase. I am leaning towards the K200d. It was between that and the Canon Xsi, but after seeing them in person the k200d seems to be more solidly built. I also like the idea of weather proofing. The other main factor is price. Like many, I can't afford to dish out thousands on new gear.

This will be my first dslr. ATM I have a Canon p&s that does have some manual capability, but obviously is pretty limited in what it can do. The issue I am having at the moment is deciding on whether or not to get the kit. the other option would be to get a refubrished k200 and then have some money to spend on a couple of lenses. But the idea of having a refurb is somewhat scary, as there is always the thought of having problems with one.

I like to shoot macro (mainly flowers), I like to be outside shooting nature (landscapes), and I also like to just be out and about shooting whatever catches my eye. So about 90% of what I like to shoot is outside.

So I guess my question is, would it be better just to go with the kit? Or would I be better off going with a refurb and snatching up a couple of lenses that would suit my shooting styles better?

I am still reading and learning on lenses and aperature, so I'm also not sure what specific lenses would suit my needs.

Any input would be greatly appreciated. I am open to any ideas. I have been reading the boards and all the great insight and information. It's great.

Thanks in advance,

Justin

12-08-2009, 03:42 PM   #2
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I think the best path is to get the camera of your choice and the kit lens, then use it a lot for several months or even a year before getting a new lens. Without some SLR experience, you need at least some hands-on experience with one lens before knowing what the next lens will be. The kit lens is pretty good and very flexible, so it's not that limiting to learn on. If you were in a wetter climate, I might suggest the WR version, but it's not necessary.

When you get the camera, experiment with settings and take a lot of pictures. The great thing about digital and the kit lens: everything works together, all the settings are recorded for later and taking the shot is free. If you really look at what worked and what didn't, you will have a much better understanding of what the next lens should be.
12-08-2009, 03:43 PM   #3
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It's all about how much money you want to spend. As has been said many times here and in reviews, the Pentax kit lens is one of the better kit lenses. I used mine for some time until LBA (lens buying addition) kicked it. I hardly use it these days but it still works just fine and gives good results. Keep in mind that I replaced it with a DA*16-50 f2.8 SDM lens which is my pride an joy. Personally, I'd recommend that you get the camera with a kit lens and learn to use it. Then, really see what the next (several) lens aquistions might be. Another great lens (and inexpensive) is the DA 50-200 lens. This can be picked up on this forum quite cheaply. The kit and that lens will give you a lot of range. Again, keep it simple until you've adapted to your new DSLR. $0.02
12-08-2009, 03:48 PM   #4
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How much is your budget to dish out on your K200D? If this is your first DSLR and you are planning to buy a K200D with a lens with a total of over 500 USD, I would definitely dish it out on a K-x w/ kit lens instead and build it up that way.

12-08-2009, 03:48 PM   #5
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You won't go wrong by starting with the kit lens. It will handle the uses you've mentioned very well. Eventually you will find it doesn't do something you want, and then the decision on the next lens will be easier. Traditionally people want a longer lens next, or else a faster (wider aperture) lens.

Personally I wouldn't hesitate to buy a refurbished camera as long as it has a full warranty. It's pretty easy to find a used kit lens to pair it with (like in the marketplace on this forum). Good luck in your decision.
12-08-2009, 04:21 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Shooter Quote
I like to shoot macro (mainly flowers), I like to be outside shooting nature (landscapes)
tripod & P&S... and good pano software
12-08-2009, 04:51 PM   #7
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I appreciate everyone's input so far. LeDave can you tell me why you suggest I go with the K-x? Is it just based on budget alone?
12-08-2009, 06:58 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Shooter Quote
I appreciate everyone's input so far. LeDave can you tell me why you suggest I go with the K-x? Is it just based on budget alone?
The K200D isn't supported by Pentax anymore because it's been replaced by the K-x and the K-x will continue to have firmware updates and more support by Pentax.

I've seen people upgrade from a K10D to a K-x, and that tells a lot especially when the K10D is above the K100D. Although the K100D does have weather-sealing and top LCD, it is a no-brainer for me to choose the K-x over the K100D anyways, it's overall just a more refined camera in almost every aspect possible. It does have newer technology after all.

The things to consider are also improved autofocus, higher dynamic range, more frames per second, hd video recording, live view, significantly improved high iso noise levels, lighter weight, and some more I can't think of. Trust me the K-x although is not weather-sealed does not feel cheap at all, I used to own the K-m and the reinforced polycarbonate plastic feels very sturdy and solid in my hands. I'm not going to lie to you, it feels just as solid as my K-7 only that my K-7 has an magnesium alloy body instead of polycarbonate. If I were to compare them regardless of materials used, I would say the K-m is just as good and the K-x uses the same body as the K-m.

You said this is going to be your first DSLR right? Well to tell you this, there are people out there who are upgrading from supposedly higher-end cameras and "downgrading" to the K-x, and there are some people who are upgrading from the K200D to the K-x. Sure the K200D is still a good camera, and it's not bad for the pricing right now. But if you are going to spend a lot of money, you might as well step up to get a K-x because it is very well worth it in every way imaginable. The pricing of the K-x is less than 600 w/ kit lens and it includes a robust sensor that is basically the flagship of Pentax high ISO and will probably be the most successful Pentax DSLR to date. The sensor used in it could be the next epitome of all APS-C, and in the direction shown so far, it very might as well be.

The K-m was my first DSLR camera and it's body is similar to the K-x, only the K-x is bassically a monster in the inside compared to the K-m. The lack of AF indicators and weather-sealing didn't bother me much at all. The lack of AF points is the least of my worries because I got so used to using the K-m without it, I don't even pay attention to the AF points in my K-7.

12-09-2009, 11:12 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by LeDave Quote
I've seen people upgrade from a K10D to a K-x, and that tells a lot especially when the K10D is above the K100D. Although the K100D does have weather-sealing and top LCD, it is a no-brainer for me to choose the K-x over the K100D anyways, it's overall just a more refined camera in almost every aspect possible. It does have newer technology after all.
Just to clarify - you mean "K200D", not "K100D", in the above. The K100D has the top LCD and focus point indicators, but lacks the weather sealing, and is in pretty much all other respects a step down from either the K200D or K-x.

As a K200D owner, I agree the K-x seems to me a better camera overall, at least on paper. But I wouldn't call the decision a no-brainer, as the K200D has some advantages that could be significant for some people. Top LCD I could take or leave, but weather sealing is nice. Not just for use in harsh weather, but also because it makes for a quieter camera overall, which can be important to those of us doing a lot fo concert photography. Also, the Kx apparently flips the mirror during operations that shouldn't require it (eg, DOF preview, which is how one enables live metering with manual lenses), making it louder still. A couple of other benefits of the k200D that may or may not matter are the optional battery grip, the socket for wired remote, and the viewfinder focus point indicators. I think there may be some flash system limitations in the K-x as well compared to the K200D?

For most people, the video, live view, better high ISO performance, faster frame rate, and some other improvement will trump any of those concerns, but I do think it important to spell out just what the tradeoffs actually are, because there are probably *some* people for whom the K200D is the better choice, as it does have some advantages that might be important to some people. Whereas, for instance, the K-x definitely beats the K-m in every possible way, just as the K-m beat the *istDL.
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