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01-21-2011, 09:15 AM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by lkjr Quote
Headed to Italy in a few months and really torn if I want to lug by K-x with me. Agree with others that a good point and shoot is a viable suggestion....I have a Panny LX3 (LX5 is the new model) that goes with me everywhere...wide angle, great in low light, Leica lens...super street camera imho.
+1. I carry my LX3 with me more often than my K-7 nowadays, unless I am traveling to some place I haven't been before or know I want to get some specific special shots. Sure makes my shoulder and back happier at the end of the days too.

Jason

01-21-2011, 09:44 AM   #32
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Hi everyone, and thankyou for so many great responses. Your responses have certainly made me think more about primes vs a versatile good quality zoom.

In answer to the question re where I will be travelling. Sweden for 1 week for a sporting event and then an extra 3 weeks road trip through Germany, Italy and France. So approximately 4 weeks in total.

I'm starting to think that my prime plan of 15/40/70 (and possibly a 21 to fill the gap) may be problematic for me. My concerns related to:
(1) I will still be on crutches (well 1 crutch to be specific) as I'm still recovering from a hip replacement operation; and
(2) I will have a wife and two young kids in tow (3yrs old and 6 months old)

So frequent changing of lens' may be problematic.

I'm starting to think that a DA 12-24mm or Sigma 10-20mm as a walk around lens may be the best bet plus the 40mm and 70mm primes.

Alternatively a Pentax 16-50mm sounds like it may be an option also, but losing the wide angle end <16mm which I think will be critical for buildings etc in Europe. I already have a Sigma 17-70mm which is an option also.

anyway, just an update on my thoughts at this stage.....still thinking
01-21-2011, 02:34 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by WA-surfer Quote
Hi everyone, and thankyou for so many great responses. Your responses have certainly made me think more about primes vs a versatile good quality zoom.

In answer to the question re where I will be travelling. Sweden for 1 week for a sporting event and then an extra 3 weeks road trip through Germany, Italy and France. So approximately 4 weeks in total.

I'm starting to think that my prime plan of 15/40/70 (and possibly a 21 to fill the gap) may be problematic for me. My concerns related to:
(1) I will still be on crutches (well 1 crutch to be specific) as I'm still recovering from a hip replacement operation; and
(2) I will have a wife and two young kids in tow (3yrs old and 6 months old)

So frequent changing of lens' may be problematic.

I'm starting to think that a DA 12-24mm or Sigma 10-20mm as a walk around lens may be the best bet plus the 40mm and 70mm primes.

Alternatively a Pentax 16-50mm sounds like it may be an option also, but losing the wide angle end <16mm which I think will be critical for buildings etc in Europe. I already have a Sigma 17-70mm which is an option also.

anyway, just an update on my thoughts at this stage.....still thinking
Based on your situation and conditions, I'd recommend you taking your 17-70 and forget everything else.

Jason
01-21-2011, 02:45 PM   #34
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QuoteOriginally posted by WA-surfer Quote
Hi guys,
Travelling from Australia to Europe in June...
I'm not trying to be witty but, where in Europe? For how long? Europe is rather big. Actually is bigger than Australia or USA althought most people thing that is a small place. Small countries yes, but lots of them and all different. And that is what is great about Europe, the diversity. Think about New York City with over 10 million square km and over 750 million inhabitants. We have every thing but deserts here.

Don't worry about rain. I would bet real money on sunny weather in June.

QuoteOriginally posted by WA-surfer Quote
So what do you reckon DA 15/40/70mm ltd plus my zoom?
(...)
Keen to hear your thoughts from others that have travelled.
If you're going to visit european cities the 55-300 zoom won't be of much use. Sure you could use it capture some details of buildings or a building across a river but the 70 would be long enought for most situations. If you're going for the country side the zoom might come handy, thought.

IMO the gap from 15 to 40 is huge. You will be shooting a lot in the streets.

Something in the 24-28 zone would be great. And as Phillip said Europe is for slow photography (and slow food!!!) so an A28 would be nice. That's one of my favorite focal lenght when I travel in Europe. when I went into a Vienna/Budapest/Prague trip I took the 18-55 and the 50-200. The later got very little use.

Wider than 15mm could be fun inside churches and other monuments but not a need.

So I would recommend you take a twenty something to the 15/40/70 combo.

01-22-2011, 07:51 AM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by WA-surfer Quote
I know my 55-300 zoom does not meet the "compact" requirement but I'd be sad to miss out on the shots >70mm without it.
I know what you mean. However, it does seem a lot of lenses and I wonder how often you would actually pick the zoom over the 70mm. I'd consider leaving the 70mm in a suitcase and carrying the 15, 40 and 55-300. That will simplify your choices in the field, and mean you get more use out of the zoom.

(The 70mm is small enough that you might as well take it in a suitcase, rather than leave it at home, so you can change your mind day to day.)

At the moment I'd rather have small light primes and keep changing them, than have a big and heavy wide angle zoom. I'm not on crutches, though.
01-22-2011, 08:11 AM   #36
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+1 on the 17-70 recommendation.

If you want to bring your DSLR with you, then this is the lens i would recommend also. Wifey has the sigma 17-70 and we have nothing but praises for this lens.
01-23-2011, 07:31 AM   #37
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For me (but maybe not for the original poster), the K-x plus tiny DAltd primes I used last summer was the best solution ever. The size and weight complement each other, and I get a good slice of the best of all worlds with high quality and easy carry. I have been changing lenses on a PK mount since it was introduced, and I can just about do it in my sleep. I did have to have a thorough sensor cleaning at one point. I never missed the 3mm on the wide end enough that it remotely made sense to me to carry the DA 12-24, though I will admit that I am big on traveling light, sparing my shoulder and not offering a target. (I was spending several days in Barcelona--beautiful city, but known for theft from tourists) I also packed the kit lens as a backup and an especially low value target.

However, if I were on a crutch, I would probably take my 17-70 and forget it, or go out a buy the DA 18-135. If I took the 17-70, I'd pack the 55-300 for the sporting event. To go with the zooms, I'd throw in the DA40 for a lower light option and maybe the DA15 for a wider option. I was surprised how many of my shots ended up through the DA40, and it takes up no room. In fact, the DA Ltds are all so compact that you don't lose much having all of them at least on the trip.

Having also spent the last 3 months recovering from a serious accident, and still wanting to live an active life and take quality photos, I find a one lens option invaluable--even if it is a single prime and I am back to my equipment for my first trips in the early 70s. I can do better than that now, and at less than 100% mobility, I would probably buy the DA 18-135 in a heartbeat if I were taking a long-planned trip. All of the advantages of primes pale (IMHO) in comparison to the disavantages of changing lenses frequently without unimpeded use of both hands. Seeing a lovely Ltd prime bouncing off a sidewalk does not enhance the experience. I know this from recent personal experience.

Last edited by GeneV; 01-23-2011 at 07:43 AM.
01-23-2011, 05:51 PM   #38
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GeneV, thankyou for your post you have been very helpful. This has been a very useful discussion for me with a great range of responses.

I can walk around the house and work and medium-short distances without the use of my crutch. But for medium-long distances I still need to use it, and probably will do for another year or so.

I think the ease of a zoom may be the way to go and the 18-135mm may be a good option, maybe with a Sigma 10-20mm for the wide end. I think that would be a good combination.

Alternatively a Sigma 10-20mm and my Sigma 17-70mm.

I still reckon I would take my primes (40mm and 70mm) along no matter what option, as they take up next to no extra space and it's hard to beat the quality of a good ltd prime. I take a lot of portrait/candid shots of my young daughters and the DA70mm ltd is ideal for this. I understand the wide end will be very important for Europe for buildings and streets etc so I definitely am keeping that in mind as my widest focal length I own at the moment is the 17mm from the Sigma zoom. So I have to do something there such as the Sigma 10-20mm, Pentax 12-24mm (my preferred option but pretty expensive) or a 15mm ltd prime.

Thanks again for all the feedback and keep it coming as I still have several months for a final decision and to purchase whichever lens' I am missing.

cheers,
Bryan

01-23-2011, 08:29 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by WA-surfer Quote
Hi guys,
Travelling from Australia to Europe in June this year and looking for the best travel kit. I've never been to Europe so want to maximise my photographic experience. My priorities are:
(1) image quality
(2) compact - easier to carry around in a smaller bag

I currently own DA40mm ltd and DA 70mm ltd, so I'm thinking of purchasing a DA15mm ltd to complete the kit, and then take along my 55-300mm zoom as well.

So what do you reckon DA 15/40/70mm ltd plus my zoom?
I'm guessing you can do without the 55-300. The 70 can stand some cropping, as well. I recomnend the 12-24 (or 10-20) for the wide end, unless you are set on the prime. The 12-24 is no slouch, and covers a useful range.
01-23-2011, 09:47 PM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by WA-surfer Quote
Hi guys,
Travelling from Australia to Europe in June... I currently own DA40mm ltd and DA 70mm ltd, so I'm thinking of purchasing a DA15mm ltd to complete the kit, and then take along my 55-300mm zoom as well.

So what do you reckon DA 15/40/70mm ltd plus my zoom?
Having recently returned from a three week USA to Italy/Greece trip that included Venice, Santorini and Athens, I recommend a 16-45/40/70 kit. Keep the 16-45 on the camera and carry the 40 in your left vest pocket and the 70 in the right. Leave your 55-300 at home.

For a vest, consider the Travel Vest from SCOTTEVEST/SeV - Men's Travel Vest that also works as a Photographers Vest with many Vest Pockets - Cloth in black.

A 16-45/40/70 kit will be perfect and would be my kit if I were to do it, again.

Cheers... M
01-23-2011, 11:11 PM   #41
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my k10d has had the tamron 17-50 for 3 europe trips now, braved scottish mountains, survived protests in rome and rough handling by paris police. I have not had need for anything more than that lens and camera combo. I have wanted lighter weight though and would think the kr and fa 35 or da 35 will be my next step forwards.
01-24-2011, 03:00 AM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by WA-surfer Quote
Alternatively a Sigma 10-20mm and my Sigma 17-70mm.
After reading your update (crutches, kids, etc), I think you'll be fine with the above. Enjoy your trip and take care!
02-01-2011, 07:10 AM   #43
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final decision

Hi guys,
For completeness I thought I should update you on what i decided. After taking into account all the great views in this thread and considering my constraints when traveling (using a crutch and kids in tow) I decided on the following:

Sigma 10-20mm (on camera as walk around lens) - just purchased.
Sigma 17-70mm
Pentax DA40 ltd and DA 70 ltd

I figure the versatility of the zooms up to 70mm will be a lot easier for me and i can pull out the primes when I like as well.

I will take my Pentax DA 55-300mm in my suitcase and leave it in the hire car or hotel and only take it along if I can really see a need for it.

Anyway, the above (minus 55-300mm) should fit in a pretty compact bag for the trip.

Thanks again for all the input along the way and I will post photos upon my return.

cheers,
02-01-2011, 09:25 AM   #44
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Good choice... depends on your vacation style, how comfortable and quick you can change lenses, and how patient will your wife/gf be while waiting you to change lenses ... are deciding factors for prime/zoom for travel.

I found out that zoom lens are more convenient during travel if you want to also enjoy your trip and not just taking photos!

Have a nice trip!

Lee
02-01-2011, 09:57 AM   #45
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I am surprised that nobody recommended the 35 macro ltd. Why is that? I have the 15 and 70 ltd, and a 35 is on the way to complete the kit. Is AF really that slow? Or is there some other reason?
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