Pentax K-50 Review

Kit Lenses

Pentax is bundling a new weather-sealed version of the DA L 18-55mm kit lens with the K-50; previous budget kit lenses did not have weather sealing.  This new lens is 50% cheaper than the standard DA 18-55mm WR (as it has a plastic mount and no full-time manual focus override), but it still delivers the same image quality.  Compared to the non-sealed DA L kit lens, this new sealed version also has a better build quality.  More information on Pentax lenses can be found in our lens database.

Pentax DA L 18-55mm WRThe DA L 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 WR lens that ships with the K-50

The same applies to the new DA L 50-200mm lens, which you may opt for if you're looking for a bit more reach.
SMC Pentax-DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 ED WR
The DA L 50-200mm F4-5.6 WR lens that ships with the K-50

The Pentax DA 18-135mm WR is the third lens that can be bundled with the K-50.  It differs from the other two in many ways.  First of all the 18-135mm lens comes in a box, features a metal mount, includes a lens hood, and allows for full-time manual focus override.  While the 18-55mm and 50-200mm lenses use the traditional screwdrive autofocus mechanism, the 18-135mm has a built-in autofocus motor that's not only silent and fast, but also reliable.
You can expect the 18-135mm to deliver better image quality than the 18-55mm; it is also sharper than the 50-200mm at shorter focal lengths.  These enhancements come at a premium, however; while both the 18-55mm and 50-200mm are priced under $100, the 18-135mm retails for approximately $400.
SMC Pentax-DA 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 ED AL [IF] DC WR
The DA 18-135mm F3.5-5.6 WR lens that ships with the K-50

If you're a beginner and you don't mind having audible autofocus, then we can certainly recommend opting for the 18-55mm lens, as it's a great value given its weather sealing and decent image quality.  The 18-135mm is certainly also worth considering if you want a more versatile all-in-one lens, and quieter and faster autofocus.
The US launch retail prices for the various K-50 kits are indicated below:
  • K-50 body only: $699
  • 18-55mm lens kit: $779
  • 18-55mm & 50-200mm dual lens kit: $879
  • 18-135mm lens kit: $1099 PentaxForums @PentaxForums News | Reviews | Forum

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