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11-07-2010, 08:39 AM   #1
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I couldn't take it any longer...(K5 ordered now what??)

Ordered a K5 (the kit with the 18-55 was on sale)from B&H last night. I currently only have one pentax lens left (from my K20, I have a Kx with the 18-55, but that will be sold), the DA-l 55-300. I am going to rebuild my lens collection slowly and would genuinely like to stay in the pentax world for the long haul this time. So here is my proposed lens/gear purchase road map. Any comments/suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Considerations: I do mostly outdoor, handheld photography, I do not plan on selling anything or entering competitions, etc. My photography is just for me. It's a hobby. My budget is definitely not geared toward going all * or limited lenses, I am not going to carry a bag full of primes (Though a prime will likely be my first lens purchase as you will see below).

Away we go:

1)SMC-DA 35mm 1:2.4 AL - The reports out on the sharpness of this lens for the price seem enticing. Probably be able to get this within the next couple of months. That way I have the full 18-300 range covered with a decently sharp lens for portraits and landscapes.

2)One of the 16-50, 17-70 2.8s. I don't necessarily need this to be WR, but will play that by ear when I see what I can do with the 18-55 WR and how happy it makes me IQ wise.

3)Thinking of going for the 18-135 WR here. This will give me pretty much a perfect lens for hiking or kayaking...

4)I like Macro, but haven't gotten many chances to do it. Maybe the 100mm WR?

5) At some point in here I will need to get a decent flash (I have a crappy vivitar now, it will tide me over, but probably will want to replace it sooner than later).

6) I have never had a battery grip, but I am interested in picking one up. Would it make more sense to pick this up earlier or later?

7) Not sure where to go from here. Again, my photography mainly revolves around my life; family, hiking, occasional motor sports events, landscapes. (It may take me a year or more to get this far anyways).

Thanks for any comments/suggestions...

11-07-2010, 08:55 AM   #2
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For landscape I often use the 12-24mm. Since you have the 18-55 and 55-300, all you need to add IMHO is the 12-24.

Then after you have used that set for a while you'll get a better idea of what next. I tend to think that the 35mm is too short for portraits. You can easily find out by using your zooms for portrait and make a note of the right focal length(s) for you.
11-07-2010, 09:54 AM   #3
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Scottie137,

If you're selling the 18-55 with the K-x, then you're starting with the 55-300?
If that's the case, I would consider the 18-135WR when it comes out.
I think it would give you good coverage for your hiking activities and provide WR at the same time.

And if Pentax releases a teleconverter (rumor), that would be a cheaper way to get extra distance for the 55-300. A nice 2x would give you a 110-600.


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11-07-2010, 10:04 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by 7samurai Quote

And if Pentax releases a teleconverter (rumor), that would be a cheaper way to get extra distance for the 55-300. A nice 2x would give you a 110-600.
IQ is already not the best and already slow, I can only imagine how slow and bad the IQ would be with a TC.

And I would get a battery grip right away. I think you would enjoy the extra heft and ease of use it provides. Also consider an R-Strap. It is the best shoulder strap you can get.

11-07-2010, 10:24 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Raylon Quote
IQ is already not the best and already slow, I can only imagine how slow and bad the IQ would be with a TC.

And I would get a battery grip right away. I think you would enjoy the extra heft and ease of use it provides. Also consider an R-Strap. It is the best shoulder strap you can get.
The IQ from 55-300 is actually excellent for it's price and size. Probably one of the best consumer zooms with a better range and IQ than most. However, a TC (especially a 2x) would probably not give you better IQ than just cropping your image. That said, I've used a 1.4x on the 55-300 and the results aren't bad and the AF still works decently.

Battery grip is a personal preference; so people like the feel better with and some without. I didn't personally care for the grip on my K7 (same size as the K5), even when using larger lenses like the 60-250. Just a personal preference, so you might want to see if you can try one out and have the ability to return it if you don't care for it.
11-07-2010, 10:34 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ole Quote
Then after you have used that set for a while you'll get a better idea of what next.
I second Ole's opinion. Start off with a few lens and figure out where you feel you're lacking.

7samurai
11-07-2010, 10:34 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Raylon Quote
IQ is already not the best and already slow, I can only imagine how slow and bad the IQ would be with a TC.

And I would get a battery grip right away. I think you would enjoy the extra heft and ease of use it provides. Also consider an R-Strap. It is the best shoulder strap you can get.

To the OP, by his your record, I wouldn't be surprised that the suggestion from him is nothing but L glass...and make it sound every big
11-07-2010, 10:52 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by dgaies Quote
The IQ from 55-300 is actually excellent for it's price and size. Probably one of the best consumer zooms with a better range and IQ than most. However, a TC (especially a 2x) would probably not give you better IQ than just cropping your image. That said, I've used a 1.4x on the 55-300 and the results aren't bad and the AF still works decently.

Battery grip is a personal preference; so people like the feel better with and some without. I didn't personally care for the grip on my K7 (same size as the K5), even when using larger lenses like the 60-250. Just a personal preference, so you might want to see if you can try one out and have the ability to return it if you don't care for it.
That is surprising actually. My buddy has a 55-300 he has used for a while and I was severely underwhelmed by it. He can get better images by cropping images from a 135mm prime. Maybe has a bad copy?

And yes I should have said test one as soon as you can, not buy one as soon as you can. Totally a personal preference.

QuoteOriginally posted by aleonx3:
To the OP, by his your record, I wouldn't be surprised that the suggestion from him is nothing but L glass...and make it sound every big
Yes, go buy some L glass for your Pentax...thanks for the useful post.

11-07-2010, 11:16 AM   #9
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I have never had anything wider angle than a 16mm. I have always been interested though. I will have to add one to the list. With KEH up the road, finding a nice used copy shouldn't be too bad. Decisions, decisions. It's a good "problem" to have though!
11-07-2010, 11:37 AM   #10
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Battery grips are not a for-sure must-have, it really depends on the person. I hate the extra heft and size of a battery grip - I can't comfortably manage to operate a focus ring or zoom with one on the camera. But I have small hands. So if at all possible, try before you buy (or buy from someone with a good return policy).

As far as macro - the 100 WR macro lens is the one that intrigues me. If I didn't already have the Viv S1 105, it would probably be fairly high on my priority list.

I've had 2 different 55-300 lenses - sent the first one in for warranty repair and they sent me a new one. There's a significant difference, making me believe in the lens (I didn't like the first one). The new one, as good as it is, doesn't hold up well to the DA*300 but then there's a huge difference in cost. As a consumer lens, it does quite well and it's a whole lot lighter!

If you already have the 18-55 and 55-300 then the 12-24 makes sense. I have it, it's great fun though there was a learning curve for me to figure out how to best use a really wide angle lens (I'm more of a detail person and preferred longer lenses in the past). It changed how I viewed the world, always a good thing.
11-07-2010, 11:54 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mtngal Quote

If you already have the 18-55 and 55-300 then the 12-24 makes sense. I have it, it's great fun though there was a learning curve for me to figure out how to best use a really wide angle lens (I'm more of a detail person and preferred longer lenses in the past). It changed how I viewed the world, always a good thing.
See this is why forums are useful. I wouldn't have considered the 12-24 a must have, but now I am going to do some more research. Thanks everyone!
11-07-2010, 12:29 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Raylon Quote
That is surprising actually. My buddy has a 55-300 he has used for a while and I was severely underwhelmed by it. He can get better images by cropping images from a 135mm prime. Maybe has a bad copy?
Or it could be poor shooting technique. 300mm takes care to shoot, especially handheld.
11-07-2010, 10:12 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Raylon Quote
My buddy has a 55-300 he has used for a while and I was severely underwhelmed by it.
I personally would not hesitate to recommend the DA 55-300mm . An excellent lens for its price range.

There are better long zooms, of course, costing a fair bit more.
The long end at 300mm is not easy to shoot with....takes a lot of practice to keep improving.
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