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01-24-2016, 12:39 PM   #1
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Which lenses to go with a K-50?


I plan to buy a K-50 soon, but I was wanting to know what you guys thought would be the best lenses for it within a budget of about $500 (camera included).

I've been looking at the kit with 18-55 and 50-200 mainly until now, but my uncle has two K-mount lenses that went with an old film camera, so even if I went body only I would still have two lenses (although I would get tired of manual focusing all the time, which is why I'm looking at other lenses)

Here's the lenses I would inherit:
Sears 135mm 2.8 Macro Zone
Sears 50mm 1.7

And here's what I'm looking at:
Pentax DA 18-55mm
Pentax DA 50-200mm
Sigma 70-300mm
Tamron 18-200mm
Tamron 70-300mm

Those are the main ones I've considered, but I would welcome any recommendations.

What would you go with?



01-24-2016, 01:31 PM   #2
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If you're looking for IQ, the standard K-50 kit with the 18-55mm and 50-200mm IMO is your best value. With the Pentax 35mm f/2.4, you'd only be about $50 over your $500 target.

And if you could afford $600, then I'd suggest the 18-55mm and 55-300mm WR zoom kit lenses.

For convenience, and if you wanted a less bulky kit, then the Tamron 18-200mm makes the most sense, but it's not WR and one of the top reasons for shooting with the K-50 is the WR.
01-24-2016, 01:37 PM   #3
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What do you like to do with a camera? Answer that and the answers will probably be better at targeting suitable lenses.
01-24-2016, 01:43 PM   #4
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A lot depends on your style of shooting and the focal lengths you favor. My DA 18-135 is usually is on my K50. It is just the right focal lengths for a walk around lens and it is not so heavy to be awkward. This also saves from having to change lenses or carrying an extra one. Super zooms are great for convenience but can suffer IQ. Since the K50 is smaller I find using larger longer lenses on the K50 award due to being unbalanced.

01-24-2016, 02:02 PM   #5
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When I bought K-50 kits with 18-55 and 50-200. They are very good than my old k-10/7 with kits. You will be happy. K-50 are smart. You can buy other lenses later.
01-24-2016, 02:06 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alex645 Quote
And if you could afford $600, then I'd suggest the 18-55mm and 55-300mm WR zoom kit lenses.
For $600 you should be able to get the 18-135mm and the 55-300mm, which would be even better.

I'd also recommend the 18-135mm over the 18-55mm and 50-200mm combo for the weather sealing, silent AF, and all-in-one flexibility.

Finally, the Pentax 55-300mm is worth getting over the Tamron/Sigma alternatives, IMO.

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01-24-2016, 02:08 PM   #7
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I've found the 18-55 and 50-200 to be good enough just to cover the wide-telephoto range with auto-focus zoom. Once you've used those for a while then you'll probably be able to tell what focal lengths you use most and start to pick out old manual focus primes to get better image quality and faster glass.
01-24-2016, 02:12 PM   #8

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ideally, 18-135mm WR + 35mm f2.4 (with 55-300mm WR as a purchase down the road, if 135mm is too short for you).

If the 18-55mm + 50-200mm + 35 f2.4mm is in your budget, then that.

If you prefer quality over quantity, then an 18-55mm (for the price, fine), and a second hand DA 35mm f2.8 macro. (Great lens! That would actually be my first choice)

01-24-2016, 02:27 PM   #9

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It depend a lot of what you want to achieve and what you would agree to spend on the long run. Here all the lenses you include while ok are somewhat slow. They are made for outdoor, daylight work. They would work quite well in that case, but I don't know of any lense that wouldn't do it anyway.

At this game, I think the 18-135 is a great compromize, with a great price and WR package. There was one on sale for $225 not long ago on the market place meaning you would stay in the $500 budget, if you find another one. Later on, depending on your interrests, you could add in a 55-300 for reach if you are into wildlife, a DA50 for portraiture or maybe a 17-50 or 24-70 for events/indoor/low light.

If you are interrested to get a bit more performance in low light, indoor/events/clubs then you'll want some fast lens, I'd advise to have some fast f/2.8 lens. like a 17-50 from tamron/sigma. In that case the strategy could be either:
- you buy it now, potentially use and keep only that and the manual lenses until you can afford a 70-300 or 55-300 (an used DAL 55-300 is more interresting).
- you buy the 18-55 + a used DAL 55-300 to cover the whole range today and when you can, you complete your setup with a 17-50, 24-70 or 28-75 f/2.8 from tamron or sigma.

As you understood, because your budget is quite low, getting used lenses can really help to get better gear for a great price.
01-24-2016, 02:32 PM   #10
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Get the WR 18-55mm, or if you don't care about WR, get the Tamron 17-50mm f2.8. Optically much better than the kit lens.
On the telephoto side, go for a Pentax 55-300mm. Generally considered to be the best budget telephoto zoom. Can get an older used version for cheaps, or a brand new fancy HD version. They have the same glass, just different barrel and lens coatings on the HD version.
Later get DA 50mm f1.8 for low light photos or DA 35mm f2.4 to get slightly wider angle.
01-24-2016, 03:18 PM   #11
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Thanks for all the replies!

Most of what I shoot is of cityscapes, cats, and cars (both sitting and moving). I handled the K-50 at a local camera store and absolutely loved the kit lens barrel, so I would want the newer style.
01-24-2016, 04:55 PM   #12
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Btw, here is the link for the "normal zoom" article: DA* 16-50mm vs. Sigma and Tamron 17-50mm F2.8 Comparison Review - Introduction | Reviews
I think the sigma might have been replaced by a newer version by now? I'm not sure. And Pentax released the DA 20-40mm ltd. But apart from that, the article is still valid
01-24-2016, 05:55 PM   #13
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I'd say 18-135, and as Adam said if you increase the budget to 600 you can get a 55-300 to go with it.
01-24-2016, 06:45 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by VoiceOfReason Quote
I'd say 18-135, and as Adam said if you increase the budget to 600 you can get a 55-300 to go with it.
As I understood the OP, the budget is around $500 for the K-50 plus the lens or lenses. So I assume you and Adam are suggesting the K-50 with 18-135mm and 55-300mm is $600 used? New, I know the K-50 + 18-135mm without the 55-300mm is around $650.

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