Pentax PENTAXians..... tell me about your favorite lenses

Luke

Legend
Location
Milwaukee, WI USA
Real Name
Luke
@ Steve... I have procured the 35mm macro (along with a plethora of other lenses) and will try to share my opinions with you soon. But getting a bunch of lenses all at once doesn't give me time to evaluate all of them at once. My preliminary experience with the 35mm was that it had EASILY made the first cut, so I'm kind of sorting out what to do with my overload on the longer focal lengths.

@ christilou..... I'm not sure what o compare the K-30 viewfinder to. I've never used a DSLR much before, so I like that it has 100% coverage....seems bright and clear. But coming from the E-M5 and the Fujis, I'm not sure I always prefer an optical viewfinder to a very good electronic one. I need more practice with it. But when I release the shutter, I really wonder what my exposure looks like. I like having a liveview eye level finder that shows the exposure. I'm fairly comfortable that I can dial it in with PP if I don't want a "correct" exposure. And sometimes I just shoot with a bracketed exposure burst.

I think after a couple more weeks of experience with my first DSLR, I'll do a comprehensive post about the K-30 and DSLRs in general. In some ways they are great...and in others, they are ridiculously 20th century.
 
great shots, you're giving me seller's remorse...

After the last K-5 firmware update, you'll have to prise my 35 macro from my cold dead hands (is that the expression?). Its come along nicely, AF is *much* faster and more accurate than it used to be and it has now taken its place as my favourite prime (I still love the 15 and 55, but the 35 is, as they say "just right")

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Tom... Again by kyte50, on Flickr

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Paperwasp by kyte50, on Flickr

@Luke, and @Steve... cannot recommend this lens highly enough.
 

Biro

Hall of Famer
Location
Jersey Shore
Real Name
Steve
@ Steve... I have procured the 35mm macro (along with a plethora of other lenses) and will try to share my opinions with you soon. But getting a bunch of lenses all at once doesn't give me time to evaluate all of them at once. My preliminary experience with the 35mm was that it had EASILY made the first cut, so I'm kind of sorting out what to do with my overload on the longer focal lengths.

@ christilou..... I'm not sure what o compare the K-30 viewfinder to. I've never used a DSLR much before, so I like that it has 100% coverage....seems bright and clear. But coming from the E-M5 and the Fujis, I'm not sure I always prefer an optical viewfinder to a very good electronic one. I need more practice with it. But when I release the shutter, I really wonder what my exposure looks like. I like having a liveview eye level finder that shows the exposure. I'm fairly comfortable that I can dial it in with PP if I don't want a "correct" exposure. And sometimes I just shoot with a bracketed exposure burst.

I think after a couple more weeks of experience with my first DSLR, I'll do a comprehensive post about the K-30 and DSLRs in general. In some ways they are great...and in others, they are ridiculously 20th century.

Give us your unvarished impressions. But I do think you'll find the DA 35 Limited macro is one of those lenses with a little something extra. Also, your initial reaction to the K30 optical viewfinder reminds me once again that it's really what one is used to. Many photo traditionalists swear they'll never accept an electronic viewfinder. I have long maintained that OVFs have just as many limitations as EVFs - only a bit different. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.
 
Give us your unvarished impressions. But I do think you'll find the DA 35 Limited macro is one of those lenses with a little something extra. Also, your initial reaction to the K30 optical viewfinder reminds me once again that it's really what one is used to. Many photo traditionalists swear they'll never accept an electronic viewfinder. I have long maintained that OVFs have just as many limitations as EVFs - only a bit different. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.

Exactly, I was out one sunny day photographing a black Moto Guzzi with a K-5 and GH2. It was so bright that I had trouble chimping on the rear LCD of the K-5, which was important for a black bike on a sunny day. The GH2, in comparison, was great to use under the conditions...
 

Yeats

All-Pro
Location
New Jersey, USA
Real Name
Chris
Favorite Pentax lenses...

- DA 15mm Ltd. I don't think there's ever been a lens that has so encouraged people to include the sun in their photos. Gobs of color and contrast.

- Tamron 70-300 1:2 whatever... yeah, I know, cheap consumer zoom, slow AF, purple fringe monster. But.... it's FUN. Some of my most wonderful photographic experiences involved this lens, particularly when coupled with the Raynox DCR-150 macro adapter.

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- Helios 44-2, with it's totally quirky bokeh and rendering that's so different from typical modern lenses.

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Yeats

All-Pro
Location
New Jersey, USA
Real Name
Chris
Thanks, Luke.

I sold off most of my Pentax stuff last summer.... much as our own Christilou, I was suffering from a hefty case of ennui. I was also disheartened by Pentax's decision to significantly increase lens prices, which had already risen significantly over the previous couple of years. Finally, a series of restrictive family responsibilities and my girlfriend's increasing health problems (a trend that has now, fortunately, reversed) just added to the onslaught of the blues. In the midst of the Great Pentax Sell-off, I traded for the Panasonic LX5. The new tool somewhat revived my interest in photography, and this site - with all of the lovely people who just happen to be fine picture-takers as well - has really fanned my enthusiasm.

I decided a while back that I wouldn't haul around large lenses any more. I hated the conspicuousness of the Sigma 170-500.

I've learned there's a reason why many photography enthusiasts have multiple systems.

I still have a trio of K-mount lenses, though - the aforementioned Helios, a Pentax M 28/3.5, and a Pentax F 35-70. All cheap, excellent lenses. There may yet be another Pentax camera in my future... :wink:
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
.. I have long maintained that OVFs have just as many limitations as EVFs - only a bit different. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.
I think thats why I adore the Fuji hybrids, and why I would have an X-Pro over an X-E any day (but, due to extremes of financial challenge, will make do with the X100) That said, however, I do have quite a marked preference for OVF, but I think thats because I came from film SLR to digital and never did quite adapt well to EVF.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
great shots, you're giving me seller's remorse...
I came painfully close to selling the K-5 not so long ago, but because I had been hanging out here, instead of in PF, did not know there had been so many firmware updates. I was still running on 1.03. Its all good now, and I am enjoying the K-5 once more... in fact more than I did even when I first bought it.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
Favorite Pentax lenses...

- DA 15mm Ltd. I don't think there's ever been a lens that has so encouraged people to include the sun in their photos. Gobs of color and contrast.

Agreed, its an excellent wide angle lens. It might be "slow" at f/4 but really, that is perfectly adequate for most purposes. And I have done the sun thing too, it works beautifully if you stop down far enough :)

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A Bright Sun by kyte50, on Flickr

and, you can do closeup with it as well.
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Rose and Buds by kyte50, on Flickr

- Tamron 70-300 1:2 whatever... yeah, I know, cheap consumer zoom, slow AF, purple fringe monster. But.... it's FUN.

Beautiful shots from a grossly underrated lens. It always gets bagged in "serious" forums and reviews, but I regret selling mine like you wouldnt believe (although, you probably would!). I have a DA 55-300 now and in spite of protests to the contrary, I believe the Tammy to be much better at the long end, and more stable as well.

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Native Miner by kyte50, on Flickr
 

Luke

Legend
Location
Milwaukee, WI USA
Real Name
Luke
I have a DA 55-300 now and in spite of protests to the contrary, I believe the Tammy to be much better at the long end, and more stable as well.

I have the Tamron and my brief experience with it wasn't great at the long end so I ordered the DA 55-300. I'll have to do some head to head testing. If it's not head and shoulders better for the price, it'll go back. I suppose there is some sample variation that could come into play as well. I had bought the Tamron as a cheap jack of all trades to do tele work and macro, but since I have acquired a couple nice macros, it was seeming a bit redundant in my kit. With all the Pentax options (and 3rd party lenses), one can easily get paralyzed by having too many choices, but I think I nearly have everything sorted out.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
.. I suppose there is some sample variation that could come into play as well. ...
Could be so. I loved the Tamron but thought that I should have the DA instead so when I sold my K200D (another regret) I let the tammy go with it. I intend to get another. Also had an 18-250 Tamron, and wish I had not sold that, I dont really have a good walkabout lens (although... these days... I guess I tend to leave the 35macro on the camera most of the time and throw the 55 in the bag.)
 

Yeats

All-Pro
Location
New Jersey, USA
Real Name
Chris
Half that plane would be purple with the Tammy 70-300... :rofl:

Seriously, though, sample variations have a lot to do with it. I've owned 3 "Tamron" 70-300's - the first two were the newest, official 70-300 Di LD blah blah models, whihc were purple fringing monsters... those two eventually got sold as I fiddled with other 300mm lenses... then I bought a Quantaray 70-300, which was a rebadged Tamron but without the "Di" designation, and that had noticeably less purple fringing, despite not being "optimized for digital" (Di).

For me, it came down to this: which do I prefer, the wide 55mm of the Pentax DA 55-300, or the 1:2 macro mode of the Tammy 70-300? It was just too convenient and fun to park myself a yard from a butterfly or flower and shoot away.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
For me, it came down to this: which do I prefer, the wide 55mm of the Pentax DA 55-300, or the 1:2 macro mode of the Tammy 70-300? It was just too convenient and fun to park myself a yard from a butterfly or flower and shoot away.

Thats the thing... I doubt I will ever have enough spare cash to buy a long macro, but the 1:2 of the tammy is affordable. I can have more than one zoom of this kind, surely :):)
 

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