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05-20-2020, 01:07 AM - 1 Like   #5836
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dartmoor Dave Quote
Has anyone done (or would be willing to do) some comparison shots between the Sigma 17-70mm and the Pentax 18-55mm? By comparison shots, I mean photos taken in a real-world photography situation to show differences in rendering styles rather than just sharpness.
While in lockdown I relish the opportunity to contribute. The images probably won't be too exciting but they will be real world. Will set the lenses to the same FL and use a tripod, wired remote and AF.

05-20-2020, 03:06 AM   #5837
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QuoteOriginally posted by rayallen Quote
While in lockdown I relish the opportunity to contribute. The images probably won't be too exciting but they will be real world. Will set the lenses to the same FL and use a tripod, wired remote and AF.

Thanks Ray, looking forward to seeing that. My impression is that Sigma lenses usually have a cooler colour rendering than Pentax glass, but if the 17-70mm has got smoother rendering of high contrast edges than the slightly crude look of the 18-55mm then that would be a big improvement.
05-20-2020, 10:26 AM   #5838
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dartmoor Dave Quote
Thanks Ray, looking forward to seeing that. My impression is that Sigma lenses usually have a cooler colour rendering than Pentax glass, but if the 17-70mm has got smoother rendering of high contrast edges than the slightly crude look of the 18-55mm then that would be a big improvement.
Actually, from my experience, Sigma lenses tend to be warmer. They've been described as being lenses with a warming filter on, though I think that's not the case with the newer lenses anymore. I only have one but it's fairly recent and of the Art series, and I don't see it as being overly warm. I also used to have a SIgma UC (ultra-compact) 70-210mm f4-5.6 and I don't remember it being all that warm... it was just "meh" in fact. I sold it cheap or gave it away, I don't remember... the lens did have one cool thing about it - the front element was screwed on like a filter. How did I find out? One day when taking a filter off, the front element went off instead...

Pentax also went through a "warm phase" in my opinion that was mostly seen in some FA lenses, but perhaps not all of them. The DA lenses seem to have gone back on that trend a bit and render more like the M and A series in my opinion - and that's a generalization of course, as Pentax never went anywhere close to the painstaking level of detail that Minolta would go to make sure that the rendering of their lenses all basically matched - even reducing the contrast in their prime lenses to compensate for the zooms being less contrasty... and of course they matched with what I see as the warm, pleasing Minolta colors back in their manual focus days. Interestingly, while everybody else was "warming up" in the film AF days, Minolta seemed like it was going away from that look a bit... anyway, that's enough off topic for today
05-20-2020, 10:33 AM   #5839
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dartmoor Dave Quote
Thanks Ray, looking forward to seeing that. My impression is that Sigma lenses usually have a cooler colour rendering than Pentax glass, but if the 17-70mm has got smoother rendering of high contrast edges than the slightly crude look of the 18-55mm then that would be a big improvement.
Dave, those were my impressions as well. Overall IQ is better with the Sigma, but I still favor the colors I got from the kit lens. Ray, I'm looking forward to seeing your results!

Taken with the Sigma 17-70 v.1 on K10D during the lake flooding of 2015:


05-20-2020, 02:01 PM - 4 Likes   #5840
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Rock n' Roll

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Something from my other hobby, using an A series f2.8 28mm
05-20-2020, 03:33 PM   #5841
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QuoteOriginally posted by paulh Quote
Dave, those were my impressions as well. Overall IQ is better with the Sigma, but I still favor the colors I got from the kit lens. Ray, I'm looking forward to seeing your results!

Taken with the Sigma 17-70 v.1 on K10D during the lake flooding of 2015:
I really like the colours and tones in that image, Paul. I know that you don't overcook your images so I assume that they are close to actual.

---------- Post added 21-05-20 at 08:43 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Dartmoor Dave Quote
Thanks Ray, looking forward to seeing that. My impression is that Sigma lenses usually have a cooler colour rendering than Pentax glass, but if the 17-70mm has got smoother rendering of high contrast edges than the slightly crude look of the 18-55mm then that would be a big improvement.
Despite my enthusiasm, this may take a few days to complete. Today is very dreary overcast and not the conditions that would achieve what we are after. And if the weather forecasters are correct we are in for a few days of wind and rain from the latter part of today. So, I will do the best I can when the weather cooperates. As is often the case, patience is a required virtue for photographers.
05-21-2020, 09:58 PM - 3 Likes   #5842
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Comparison between Pentax DA 18-55mm WR and Sigma 17-70mm Contemporary.

I have managed to get out and take a few images over the past two days. I have never done a comparison like this before and it has been very revealing.
I now have a much greater respect for the good old DA 18-55mm "kit" lens. It performed faultlessly. The Sigma occasionally missed focus (it's not the first time) but only on distant subjects. At short distances it is fine.
When shooting in manual I was sometimes getting differently exposed images from each lens with the same shutter and aperture settings. It was as though f5.6 was not exactly the same for each lens.
To end up with evenly exposed images I processed them in Lightroom, set every TONE setting to zero and then clicked on Auto and that seemed to work well. No sharpening was performed.

The resulting images that I chose are not the sort of images that I would normally upload to Flickr so I have created a Google Photos album and here is the link to that album: K10D - Comparison: DA 18-55 WR vs Sigma 17-70 C - Google Photos

I am assuming that you will be able to view the images. Please advise if you can't. The lens used is in the description. If you can't see the description, click on the info icon (the letter i in a circle).

I hope that the images provided give you the information you were after, Dave. I can't see much difference between the two lenses. The images have been resized to 2048 pixels on the long edge as that is what I normally do. If you want greater resolution just holler.

All images were taken within the retirement village where I live.
05-22-2020, 12:42 AM - 1 Like   #5843
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Thanks Ray, I'd give you ten "likes" for that one if I could. It's exactly the sort of comparison that I think is most useful, because it shows the things that I personally care about the most -- colour rendering and transitions between tones. Corner sharpness at 100% crop, as people seem to obsess about in most comparisons, is utterly irrelevant to me.

As you say, there's not much in it between the two lenses apart from the fact that the Sigma seems to struggle with focus. It makes me perfectly happy to stick with El Cheapo for now. The more I read about the various modern autofocus lenses on offer, and the more photos I look at, the more convinced I am that it's only the 20-40mm Ltd that would make any significant difference in the things I'm personally interested in. The new 16-50mm looks promising but will be way out of my price range, and until we see some sample shots from it I think I can control my excitement.

Thanks again for doing an exemplary test. You've left me with a very happy feeling this morning, knowing that a lens that I only paid 17 for will serve me fine for the timebeing.

05-22-2020, 12:57 AM - 1 Like   #5844
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dartmoor Dave Quote
Thanks Ray, I'd give you ten "likes" for that one if I could.
Phew! I am very happy that I provided what you were after. It's always hard to know whether you are producing what somebody wants in a comparison test. The weather really did not cooperate but at least there were no harsh shadows. You were not worried about sharpness but, as you can see, it is something that I always look for. After this, I think I will be using the 18-55 more often. After all, the majority of my early images with the K10D were taken with a Version 1 copy of that lens. The one I used for the comparison is my second WR.

Just keep on producing the images that you do so well with El Cheapo and we will all be happy.
05-22-2020, 11:29 AM   #5845
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QuoteOriginally posted by rayallen Quote
Just keep on producing the images that you do so well with El Cheapo and we will all be happy.
Yup The results are closer than I was expecting. I think your newer version of the 18-55 is a touch better than the original that I've been using (although I'm still pretty happy with it). I found quite a few unprocessed 17-70 images I'll try to post up soon. My impressions are the Sigma tends to render a bit "bluer" than the kit lens. Good work Ray, and thanks for doing this!

Last edited by paulh; 05-22-2020 at 12:09 PM.
05-22-2020, 12:36 PM   #5846
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QuoteOriginally posted by rayallen Quote
Comparison between Pentax DA 18-55mm WR and Sigma 17-70mm Contemporary.

I have managed to get out and take a few images over the past two days. I have never done a comparison like this before and it has been very revealing.
I now have a much greater respect for the good old DA 18-55mm "kit" lens. It performed faultlessly. The Sigma occasionally missed focus (it's not the first time) but only on distant subjects. At short distances it is fine.
When shooting in manual I was sometimes getting differently exposed images from each lens with the same shutter and aperture settings. It was as though f5.6 was not exactly the same for each lens.
To end up with evenly exposed images I processed them in Lightroom, set every TONE setting to zero and then clicked on Auto and that seemed to work well. No sharpening was performed.

The resulting images that I chose are not the sort of images that I would normally upload to Flickr so I have created a Google Photos album and here is the link to that album: K10D - Comparison: DA 18-55 WR vs Sigma 17-70 C - Google Photos

I am assuming that you will be able to view the images. Please advise if you can't. The lens used is in the description. If you can't see the description, click on the info icon (the letter i in a circle).

I hope that the images provided give you the information you were after, Dave. I can't see much difference between the two lenses. The images have been resized to 2048 pixels on the long edge as that is what I normally do. If you want greater resolution just holler.

All images were taken within the retirement village where I live.
Given that the color rendition between the 2 lenses is very close, thankfully, why does the Sigma miss on focus so often? It would make me leery of using it unless the extremes of the focus range are important for the shot. Is it just your copy of the lens, or is it common to all or most copies of that particular lens? Or is it the specific lens/camera combination? Not likely that we'll ever know for sure! Oh, well, nice work, Ray.
05-22-2020, 12:45 PM - 1 Like   #5847
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QuoteOriginally posted by subsea Quote
why does the Sigma miss on focus so often?
I never experienced this with my copy (the older screw-driven model), and I don't recall hearing a lot of complaints about the HSM versions either. Hopefully this is just an isolated case.

S-M-C Tak 20/4.5 on K10D:
05-22-2020, 03:43 PM   #5848
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QuoteOriginally posted by paulh Quote
Good work Ray, and thanks for doing this!
Thanks, Paul. It was easy to do and quite educational.

QuoteOriginally posted by subsea Quote
Given that the color rendition between the 2 lenses is very close, thankfully, why does the Sigma miss on focus so often? It would make me leery of using it unless the extremes of the focus range are important for the shot. Is it just your copy of the lens, or is it common to all or most copies of that particular lens? Or is it the specific lens/camera combination? Not likely that we'll ever know for sure! Oh, well, nice work, Ray.
Thanks, subsea. I don't have an answer for the Sigma's occasional missing focus. My focus method is the same no matter what lens I am using. My Sigma 150-500 nails focus every time. For the last few images in that set I actually did use a tripod, manual exposure, an IR remote and the cover over the viewfinder and that did seem to make a difference. I still like the Sigma 17-70 and will continue using it but I will pay more attention to focus in future. It could be user error.

I would also like to take this opportunity to advise that I will soon be reluctantly cancelling my Flickr PRO subscription. I will be reverting to the free "1000 image" membership. I have been a Flickr member for 16 years and now have just over 4000 images there. I like to think that I go for quality rather than quantity. This will mean that the images in some of my older posts will no longer be available and for that I apologise.

I renewed my 2-year PRO membership in 2018 just before its price was changed to that of a 1-year membership (i.e. 100% increase) but now the cost of a 2-year membership has increased by 311% compared to what I paid in 2018.
I am a retired person living off my superannuation and a part pension and I just can't justify paying that sort of increase for basically the same service. Thus, I have decided to continue using Flickr for its ease-of-use facilities and will put up with whatever shortcomings there are with the 1000 image limit.
I have many more images over on Google Photos (which is FREE) and I can link them to this forum with only minor inconvenience. And now I know that I can link Google Photos albums here so I probably could live without Flickr.

Are the existing Flickr PRO members here happy with the new charges? I would be interested to know how you feel. The new owners claim that they can't continue operating Flickr as a loss making service. At the prices they are now charging they will have to do it without my help, I am sure that it was making a loss long before they bought it.
05-23-2020, 01:04 AM - 1 Like   #5849
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I've never even considered the "pro" version of Flickr. I use it purely to host photos for posting here and completely ignore the social media side of it, and at the moment I think I've only got just over 300 photos on there, so at this rate it'll take me a few more years to hit the 1000.

It'll be a shame to see your older photos disappear, Ray. I had the same thing happen to me when Google+ was closed down, and there are big chunks of this thread and the Takumar Club that now just have blanks where my snaps used to be. At one point I'd hoped to replace the Google+ links with Google Photos links, but it just wasn't practical.

As long as you find some way to keep posting your photos here, Ray, we'll all be happy.
05-23-2020, 01:52 AM   #5850
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dartmoor Dave Quote
As long as you find some way to keep posting your photos here, Ray, we'll all be happy.
Thanks for that, Dave. Don't worry, I'm going to keep posting photos here one way or another. I could even use the gallery feature here if things get desperate.

I am still investigating the focus issues with the 17-70. It's quite strange but I have more work to do before I reach a final conclusion.
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