All around lens choice


McGregNi

Link Posted 23/07/2013 - 21:43
davidstorm wrote:
I you are going to keep the 18-55 (which I think you are), the most obvious choice is the 55-300 which is a magnificent lens for the money.

David, looks like you've been reading some of those photography books & magazines I referred to in my post above

I don't doubt the good qualities of the 55-300 zoom as you list them, but is it really the case that such a very large focal range is a truly 'obvious choice'? For some maybe, but not for everyone. Unless an individual has already found a real need to be so far from their subject that they require such lengths, then I would find it hard to recommend.

For the less experienced, shooting at 200-300mm handheld is fairly hit & miss isn't it, even with our SR system?
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver

johnriley

Link Posted 23/07/2013 - 22:01
It's a better lens than the 50-200mm Nigel, so I think I'd agree it's the obvious choice.

It's only hit and miss if you let it be. Practice is the thing.
Best regards, John

simonkit

Link Posted 23/07/2013 - 22:29
Have a look at the new version of the Sigma 17-70, gets excellent reviews which suggest it outperforms the DA18-135 and the DA17-70 which I use and find excellent too

http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-sigma-17-70mm-f2-8-4-dc-macro-os-hsm-lens-pen...

Simon
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McGregNi

Link Posted 23/07/2013 - 23:15
johnriley wrote:
It's a better lens than the 50-200mm Nigel, so I think I'd agree it's the obvious choice.

It was probably you who wrote one of those magazine articles John !

I was just questioning any assumption that for a person starting out, who has only got an 18-55 so far, that the next 'obvious' choice was a lens with the quite extraordinary length of 55-300 ('ff' field of view equivalent of 400 at the long end) .

I wouldn't want anyone to assume that was necessary for them without thinking about other options, and considering an individuals needs and wishes for their photography.

In my case, I found myself stepping backwards much more than trying to reach forward, so the 14mm prime I have was the obvious choice (budget / quality ratio being considered).
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver

davidstorm

Link Posted 23/07/2013 - 23:32
McGregNi wrote:
[quote:3496ace15f="davidstorm"]
David, looks like you've been reading some of those photography books & magazines I referred to in my post above

I don't doubt the good qualities of the 55-300 zoom as you list them, but is it really the case that such a very large focal range is a truly 'obvious choice'? For some maybe, but not for everyone. Unless an individual has already found a real need to be so far from their subject that they require such lengths, then I would find it hard to recommend.

For the less experienced, shooting at 200-300mm handheld is fairly hit & miss isn't it, even with our SR system?

I really couldn't disagree more Nigel! If someone can't shoot sharp images with a 55-300 and the Pentax SR system, there's something seriously wrong with their camera technique (physical disabilities excepted of course). Also, I was referring to the fact that the 55-300 is a perfect focal length complement to the 18-55 - no overlap - and to the fact that it's a Pentax lens which a lot of Pentax users prefer.

Why someone would prefer a 50-200 over a 55-300 baffles me completely! You don't have to use a 55-300 at the long end if you don't want to, but the extra reach is invaluable in lots of situations. That's why I always have this lens fixed to one of my cameras when out and about and why I think it is the obvious choice as a complement to the 18-55 for a Pentax user just starting out who wants a 'cover-all' lens setup for a reasonable cost.

Regards
David
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puma

Link Posted 23/07/2013 - 23:54
all I can say is the 55-300mm is a great lens the shots I have got with that lens over the 200mm says it all?
The Pentax 50-200mm is a great lens and very under rated but the 300m beats it by miles.
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jules

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 05:50
simonkit wrote:
Have a look at the new version of the Sigma 17-70, gets excellent reviews which suggest it outperforms the DA18-135 and the DA17-70 which I use and find excellent too

http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-sigma-17-70mm-f2-8-4-dc-macro-os-hsm-lens-pen...

Simon

Would seem that Ephotozine agree with you Simon...

http://www.photozone.de/nikon--nikkor-aps-c-lens-tests/822-sigma1770284os?start=...
Cheers Jules...
tri-elmar-fudd

Back in the room!
“The single most important component of a camera is the twelve inches behind it.”...Ansel Adams
www.exaggeratedperspectives.com

jules

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 06:35
OOPS Meant Photozone!
Cheers Jules...
tri-elmar-fudd

Back in the room!
“The single most important component of a camera is the twelve inches behind it.”...Ansel Adams
www.exaggeratedperspectives.com

McGregNi

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 16:00
davidstorm wrote:
I really couldn't disagree more Nigel! If someone can't shoot sharp images with a 55-300 and the Pentax SR system, there's something seriously wrong with their camera technique (physical disabilities excepted of course). Also, I was referring to the fact that the 55-300 is a perfect focal length complement to the 18-55 - no overlap - and to the fact that it's a Pentax lens which a lot of Pentax users prefer.

Why someone would prefer a 50-200 over a 55-300 baffles me completely! You don't have to use a 55-300 at the long end if you don't want to, but the extra reach is invaluable in lots of situations. That's why I always have this lens fixed to one of my cameras when out and about and why I think it is the obvious choice as a complement to the 18-55 for a Pentax user just starting out who wants a 'cover-all' lens setup for a reasonable cost.

Hey, give it time... surely one day we'll find something to disagree on even more than a zoom lens !

I'm not convinced there's any value in having 'no overlap' in focal lengths in a lens collection, unless you are a camera maker selling a twin lens kit - then it may seem persuasive. I have 'gaps' in my collection, and some overlaps. The gaps never seem to cause a problem. I don't think we need to have every focal length covered... let me think of one we don't need ... , I know, 59mm, we don't need that one, never going to need it. Maybe also 176mm ... will never use that.

Also, if its good to avoid overlaps, would you therefore disagree with those here who are advocating a 17-70, or 18-135? Would be a waste in some respects wouldn't they?

Its good that the 55-300 has its defenders, but it misses the point I think. I could give similar praise and recommendation to a 14mm, but I wouldn't say it was an 'obvious' choice for a 2nd lens, unless there was a clearly identified need for such a focal length.
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver

johnriley

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 16:08
A 14mm is a specialised lens though Nigel. A 55-300mm isn't. If we want pictures of birds or sporting events, we'll need the reach.

Looking at your lens list, would it be fair to say you're more of a wide angle to standard lens photographer?
Best regards, John

McGregNi

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 16:38
Quote:
A 14mm is a specialised lens though Nigel. A 55-300mm isn't. If we want pictures of birds or sporting events, we'll need the reach.

Looking at your lens list, would it be fair to say you're more of a wide angle to standard lens photographer?

Yes, I am for sure. As I said earlier, after getting the K7 and 18-55 I mostly found myself wanting to step back to 'get it all in'. I agree there are aspects of working with a 14mm that are 'specialised', but at the same time, for me, I would see shooting birds at 300mm as fairly 'specialised' as well! (I imagine the results would be rather specialised as well )

But of course, those sort of shots are not my interest, not the wildlife itself nor the actual images, so I'm not motivated by it and don't see the need for the focal lengths.

So it really comes back to an individuals photographic need then. My main point is that we should avoid labelling any particular lens as an 'obvious choice' without considering an individuals desire for specific shots.

Maybe the OP could throw us a line on this one? Did you have any particular type of shots, subjects or locations you would really like to capture?
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver
Last Edited by McGregNi on 24/07/2013 - 16:39

davidstorm

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 17:52
The OP said he already had a 18-55 and wanted another lens he could use for 'almost any occasion'; from this it's pretty clear that the 'almost any occasion' bit was intended to mean 'except when using the 18-55'.

He also said he was leaning towards the 55-300 so I do think it 'is the obvious choice'.

The 55-300 is not just for wildlife and birds, it is really too short in focal length for that (it will do in an emergency, but it's not ideal). It is more of a general use lens, great for portraits outside, candid shots, isolating areas of a landscape, butterflies and many other photographic opportunities. So, I don't think we are labelling the lens as an 'obvious choice' for no reason; it seems to fit with what the OP said he wanted and stated he was favouring.

Regards
David
Flickr

Some cameras, some lenses, some bits 'n' bobs

stratosk

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 18:34
Thank you for your responds
I read all your posts very carefully.

I must admit that i don't have yet any special interest for a particular type of photography (sports, macro, landscapes etc). I try to shoot everything i feel i must do. I was just thinking for a lens that can cover almost every occasion (but i think it's not possible, at least for a cheap lens). For example my first thought was tamron 18-200. A lens that i could have on my pentax all the time, without the need to switch.
If i choose one from the 50-200 or 55-300, i will definitely choose the 55-300 because from my research on internet (and your opinions of course), i see that is far better than the 50-200. But i don't know if i really want that much length.

What do you think is better for a beginner, if he wants a lens ?
Maybe i should go to the opposite direction and look for a prime lens and see how it will be without any zoom?
Or should i buy a lens that will extend the length of my default kit lens?
Last Edited by stratosk on 24/07/2013 - 18:34

CMW

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 21:38
I think if you get yourself a 55-300 you're likely to get some answers to the questions you are asking yourself. It's not much of a risk. You can sell it on if it doesn't suit you. It doesn't much matter if you don't use the longer end very often, or even at all. If the 50-200 were a better lens than the 55-300, the argument might be a little different of course.

Another possibility, already mentioned, is the 18-135, which would replace your current kit lens and add a useful bit of length.
Regards, Christopher

ChristopherWheelerPhotography

davidstorm

Link Posted 24/07/2013 - 21:41
The 55-300 is ideal for any level of photography, beginner or not. Almost everyone who has one loves it based on opinions I've seen on here!

Regards
David
Flickr

Some cameras, some lenses, some bits 'n' bobs
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