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12-10-2010, 10:50 PM   #1
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Picking up a K-x. Should I look to pick up anything else?

My parents will be splitting the cost of the camera with me so I'll probably just pick up the cheaper package. My dad has an old ME with some lenses that I think I should be able to use. I plan on picking up a pack of Sanyo batteries and a case, but should I be looking to pick up anything else?


Thanks.

12-10-2010, 10:59 PM   #2
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Here is a recent thread on the topic: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-beginners-corner-q/124224-hopefull...sory-help.html

Last edited by jolepp; 12-11-2010 at 04:10 AM.
12-10-2010, 11:01 PM   #3
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Wow. I can't believe I missed the newbie board. Thanks.
12-10-2010, 11:04 PM   #4
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I assume that in your package you are getting the 18-55 kit?
This lens is good value for the cost, and you should use it until you can see where it limits your photography. Check which ME lenses you have, as older lenses can be very good as long as you can use them on your k-x. If you quickly find yourself left short by the 55 limit, look at the kit tele, the DA 55-300. This is a bit more expensive ($300 or so), but is well liked by users and covers its range well optically. Is the k-x your first SLR? If so, then these zooms will nicely start you out. Try to find what area of your 18-55 (or 18-300 if you get the telephoto) range you use most. Once you see what focal lengths you like, and how you use them (i.e. what type of photography), have a look at the Lens Reviews section of this website and see what takes your interest. The Pentax K-mount takes great Pentax lenses back to the 1970s, so you will have plenty to choose from.

12-10-2010, 11:23 PM   #5
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Yes, it's my first SLR.
12-10-2010, 11:39 PM   #6
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Congrat for the new camera. You have already received some good advice. You need to think of:
- Lens
- hood
- SD card (take a good one)
- Rechargeable batteries
- Battery charger
- Carry bag for camera and lens(es) (?)
- cleaning kit for lens and camera
- lens caps (front and rear) and cap keeper

Except for the SD card and batteries, I would recommend to go to your local store to choose the bag, caps, and cleaning kit. Bring your camera and lenses long, and try how they fit.

Hope that the comment will help and happy shooting.
12-11-2010, 08:20 AM   #7
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A K-5 as backup camera?
12-11-2010, 10:09 AM   #8
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How is the standard charger that comes in the Sanyo Eenelopes (sp?) package?

12-11-2010, 10:26 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by mojoe_24 Quote
How is the standard charger that comes in the Sanyo Eenelopes (sp?) package?
It should be fine. For best results consider something that loads the cells individually, though.
12-11-2010, 10:40 AM   #10
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Yeah. I'd maybe look down at one of those down the road. I'm thinking about picking up a pack since I'll use the batteries for more than the camera.


How does the kit 55-300 lens compare to this one:

Amazon.com: Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4.0-5.6 Di LD Macro Zoom Lens for Pentax Digital SLR Cameras: Camera & Photo
12-11-2010, 11:15 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mojoe_24 Quote
Yeah. I'd maybe look down at one of those down the road. I'm thinking about picking up a pack since I'll use the batteries for more than the camera.


How does the kit 55-300 lens compare to this one:

Amazon.com: Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4.0-5.6 Di LD Macro Zoom Lens for Pentax Digital SLR Cameras: Camera & Photo
The kit 55-300 should quite a bit better, it has better contrast and is much less prone to CA/PF. A review with lab tests for both can be found here:

Pentax SMC DA 55-300mm f/4-5.8 ED - Review / Test Report

Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 LD Di macro (Pentax K) - Review / Lab Test Report

User reviews here:

SMC Pentax-DA L 55-300mm F4-5.8 ED Lens Reviews - Pentax Lens Reviews & Pentax Lens Database

Tamron AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD MACRO 1:2 Lens Reviews - Pentax Third-Party Lens Review Database
12-11-2010, 11:42 AM   #12
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If you or anyone you know has access to CostCo -
I believe they sell an eneloop pack with 8 AA, 4 AAA and a cheap eneloop charger for around $25 - this is a bargain.

I'll go against the tide and recommend looking at the 50-200 kit zoom - it has had mixed reviews - some very good some pretty mediocre -

But one merely has to look at the bird shots by planedriver on the 50-200 to see how good it actually/really can be:

Posts #88 and #78

My humble efforts on the K-x and 50-200:

Stanley Clarke w. Hiromi at Atlanta Jazz Festival May/30/2010:





because of the strong harsh stage lighting - I had to use recovery and adjust the exposure via ACR on this JPG.

All these concert shots were with the humble 50-200 kit zoom -
I was sitting in the rain out with the crowd
on the "wrong" side of the barrier -
no preferential treatment, no photo pass....

being on the ground was hard on my butt and my knees as I could not stand because of other people behind me - I was about 70 feet from the stage so all my shots were on the 50-200 zoom - 50mm would just about get most of the stage - and 200mm was barely enough to get about 3/4 length body shots.....
(this was one of the occasions when I wish I had the 55-300mm instead - but then at 55mm would not have got me my overall stage shots without changing lenses - so overall considering the weather circumstances I was kind of glad not to have to change lenses at all)

Link to first Stanley Clarke pic of 21

Link to first pic in my separate Atlanta Jazz Fest album (with many other artists)

I bought my 50-200 on the basis of an outstanding review in Popular Photography of 50-200 as the Samsung clone -
the 50-200 SQF chart -


The K-x with both 18-55 and 50-200 kit zooms is as low as $578 shipped from reputable vendors.......
12-11-2010, 01:04 PM   #13
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Yeah, I originally was thinking about picking that package up, but most people say that the lens isn't great.
12-11-2010, 01:41 PM   #14
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A few months ago, I paid $499 from B&H for my (second) K-x with 18-55, so for $79 more, you can get the 50-200.

Makes sense from a money standpoint, especially when you learn where the sweet FL spot is on that lens.

In addition, a lot of new users think they need and want really long, but unless you're at the zoo or birding, don't find themselves needing the long stuff all that much.
12-11-2010, 01:47 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by mojoe_24 Quote
Yeah, I originally was thinking about picking that package up, but most people say that the lens isn't great.
yeah well... my own use of the 50-200 for well over 3 1/2 years
shows it's pretty darned good (and I consider myself picky
plus I cannot be so lucky that I have the only good 50-200 kit zoom on the planet....)

The PopPhoto.com review of the 50-200 Samsung clone said:

" IN THE LAB

SQF results topped out in the Excellent range at all three tested focal lengths, an above-average performance by kit lens standards. (Even pro-caliber lenses in this focal-length range tend to dip into the Very Good SQF zone at 200mm.) Distortion was also very well controlled, according to DxO Analyzer 2.0 tests, with Imperceptible barrelling at 50mm (0.09%); and Slight pincushioning at 100mm (0.22%) and 200mm (0.23%). Light falloff was gone by f/5.6 at 50mm, and by f/8 at the longer focal lengths -- about average for the kit-zoom class. Close-focusing distances ranged from 39.25 inches at 50mm (1:16.2) to 42.24 inches at 200mm (1:4.4).

CONCLUSIONS

Optically, the best digitally-dedicated tele kit zoom that we've tested so far, this Samsung lens produced the sharpness and distortion numbers of a much more expensive, pro-caliber zoom. It remains to be seen, however, whether the plastic body will be able to hold its 11 elements in alignment for the long haul.
"

Bear in mind this is from Dec/2008 and things have moved on but their test of the 55-300 (very much recommended here) shows a SQF chart of:




Although the 55-300 zoom is also very good and gets a better review on photozone.de - it gets about the same rating SQF on PopPhoto - so I would hazard a guess for most of us just looking at photos one probably would not see any difference in quality.

So unless one really needs the reach between 200-300mm (35mm equiv to 301-450mm) then the 50-200 Zoom is more than just a match -
and there is a savings of about $100........
The 50-200 is also quite a bit more compact - which actually turns out for me to be quite important.
just another small point is that the 50-200 is slightly wider at 50mm compared to 55mm - this may not seem much until one has the longer zoom lens on the K-x and wished the wider 18-55 kit lens was on....
then 50 compared to 55 makes a LOT of difference

examples of 50-200mm shots:
on K100D -


on K-x



For more examples on both the 18-55 and 50-200 kit lenses on the K-x please see this thread:

Kx in Use
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