'Perfect' set of lenses?


Dangermouse

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 14:00
I don't think there was ever an official Pentax 135mm f2.8? There was a K series 135mm f2.5 and a Takumar Bayonet one (which doesn't seem particularly well thought of despite the ebay prices).

The M 135mm f3.5 is also worth a look as a first prime, it's a lot faster than comparably-priced zooms at the same focal length, is sharp, and doesn't take up much space.
Matt

Shooting the Welsh Wilderness with K-m, KX, MX, ME Super and assorted lenses.

robbie_d

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 14:13
Dangermouse wrote:
I don't think there was ever an official Pentax 135mm f2.8? There was a K series 135mm f2.5 and a Takumar Bayonet one (which doesn't seem particularly well thought of despite the ebay prices).

The M 135mm f3.5 is also worth a look as a first prime, it's a lot faster than comparably-priced zooms at the same focal length, is sharp, and doesn't take up much space.

And I've got one with a hard case and UV filter that I may be willing to let go of to fund other purchases, if anyone is interested.
If you can't say something nice about Pentax, you won't say anything at all.

Apparently.

Gwyn

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 14:19
The perfect set of lenses is always in the shop . That's what lba is all about.

Axl gives some good advice though for a beginner. Until you know what you want to photograph you perhaps should go for some cheap zooms and go for the best later when you know which ones suit you.

I am happy with my collection now, though I could probably get rid of a couple as I just don't use them.
I sold the 10-20 for that reason, and the 50-135* may yet go. I'm still undecided on that one. Maybe if I need the cash towards a new model camera it will go though. The same goes for the Sigma 24-70.

thoughton

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 14:21
Dangermouse wrote:
I don't think there was ever an official Pentax 135mm f2.8? There was a K series 135mm f2.5 and a Takumar Bayonet one (which doesn't seem particularly well thought of despite the ebay prices).

The M 135mm f3.5 is also worth a look as a first prime, it's a lot faster than comparably-priced zooms at the same focal length, is sharp, and doesn't take up much space.

There were F and FA 135mm f2.8 primes. There was one on either ebay or pentaxforms classifieds last night, but it seems to have vanished now.
Tim
AF - Pentax K5, Sigma 10-20/4-5.6, Tamron 17-50/2.8, Sigma 30/1.4, Sigma 70-200/2.8, Tamron 70-300/4-5.6
MF - Vivitar CF 28/2.8, Tamron AD2 90/2.5, MTO 1000/11
Stuff - Metz 58 AF1, Cactus v4, Nikon SB24, Raynox 150, Sigma 1.4x TC, Sigma 2x TC, Kenko 2x macro TC, Redsnapper 283 tripod, iMac 27”, Macbook Pro 17”, iPad, iPhone 3G
Flickr • Fluidr • PPG • Street • Portfolio site
Feel free to edit any of my posted photos! If I post a photo for critique, I want brutal honesty. If you don't like it, please say so and tell me why!
Last Edited by thoughton on 30/04/2010 - 14:22

patrickt

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 14:50
JohnX wrote:
I know that ideally one should buy a lens for a particular purpose, but I haven't yet decided what sort of photography I'm really interested in, so I tend to buy lenses if I see them at the right price then think about their use. This results in soul searching everytime I see one of you offering a lens for sale!

Does anyone have a view about what the ideal set of lenses would be to cover all aspects of photography?

I did something similar. That's why I have lenses sitting in a drawer that I never use. My biggest blunder was macro. I don't do macro. I don't need to do macro. I should have waited until I had a problem with not being able to get that close-up shot. Had I done that, I'd have two fewer lenses.

On the other hand, I did sometimes chafe because I want to go wider. I finally bought a wider lens and while I don't use it often, when I do use it, it's great. That purchase I'm happy with.

So, unless you just want the "perfect set of lenses" to put in a display and show your friends, don't do it.

Helpful

womble

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 15:04
I was just thinking about this and realised that in just under 30 years of photography the only lens I have sold was the Samsung 12-24mm which I bought from Heathrow T5 with the specific intent of selling on. I have had some nicked, I have broken one or two and I have even given one or two away, but only ever sold that one. Mind you, I now have a small batch I have been meaning to put on ebay for a couple of months. I just need to find that roundtoit someone once gave me...

K.
Kris Lockyear
It is an illusion that photos are made with the camera… they are made with the eye, heart and head. Henri Cartier-Bresson
Lots of film bodies, a couple of digital ones, too many lenses (mainly older glass) and a Horseman LE 5x4.

My website

mayday

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 15:05
patrickt wrote:
JohnX wrote:

So, unless you just want the "perfect set of lenses" to put in a display and show your friends, don't do it.

Show people - take them out of the display case and get dust and fingerprints on them. Also a high risk of moisture in the air at the moment.........fungus
Regards
David

Retired at last - now all that time for photography - you would think: wink:

johnriley

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 15:07
There's a perfect set of lenses for the photography we do, not for all types of photography.

For my film photography, my perfect set of lenses was 20-24-50-100mm. The 100mm could be a macro lens if that was appropriate.

For digital, it is 12-24, 16-45, 50, 55-300 and 100 Macro. The 16-45 would probably be 17-70 now.
Best regards, John

flossie

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 15:27
patrickt wrote:
I did something similar. That's why I have lenses sitting in a drawer that I never use. My biggest blunder was macro. I don't do macro. I don't need to do macro.

That's why I bought some really rubbish lenses etc for peanuts (see sig). I've no idea if I want to do macro, have the patience for macro, or able to spot interesting things to macro. But a couple of cheap lenses I can experiment with and then throw away or resell on ebay... its not cost me anything significant - tempting as say a 100mm Macro is, I'm resisting until I know if its something I want to do.

Same with the FA 100-300. Its not a particularly brilliant wildlife/long zoom, but it allows me to experiment at a low cost, then upgrade to a decent lens at a later stage. I've tried to shoot everything from ducks to the moon with it - learnt a lot about taking pictures, not had much worth showing - BUT if I'd spent £500 on a decent lens instead, the pictures wouldn't have been any less un-noteworthy (deliberate double-negative, sorry) just a bit sharper and nicer colours - would still be rubbish pictures!


So, moral of story : Buy cheap lenses to find out what your preferred focal length and distances are. Also things like how much you like (or not) changing lenses continously tells you where you want to be - Primes, Zooms, SuperZooms, etc...
Still shooting in the dark (literally and metaphorically)...
Last Edited by flossie on 30/04/2010 - 15:31

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JonSchick

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 16:44
I have far too many of the things (watch out for the classifieds soon...) but my thoughts are:

(1) WR is very nice in the UK
(2) fast is often very useful - so in my case perfect kit often means old MF lenses (mostly primes)
(3) small is beautiful - Bigma is perfect for poseurs!
(4) how a lens deals with out of focus areas/bokeh is just as important to me as how sharp and contrasty it is with the stuff that is in focus.
(5) exception to the rule above - Tamron 500mm SP: best affordable 500mm lens and you just have to learn how to live with it!
(6) I don't get ultrawide angle. I've tried it and failed miserably. I realise this is my issue but nothing wider than 16mm will make my perfect lens list

Combination of all of the above for me means that my perfect collection would include only a few zooms for use "when I have to" and a handful of well-chosen primes because I enjoy using them. Which ones actually make the grade vary from one week to the next!

Dangermouse

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 17:20
I agree with at least two of those points. Small, fast lenses are very handy. That's why I like the 100/120/135mm lenses, most of which are f3.5 or faster and all of which are fairly compact. Mind you, I also have a soft spot for the big K 85-210mm f4.5 zoom, which is about 18" long and weighs in at just under a kilo. You need something to rest your elbows on while using that lens, Snowdon is about right...

I'm struggling to talk myself out of an M 100mm macro, there's one on ebay for £100 at the moment which looks pretty much mint. Is this sane money and should I be pouncing on it?

I quite fancy a go at macro, and that lens has a very good reputation both for macro and normal use.
Matt

Shooting the Welsh Wilderness with K-m, KX, MX, ME Super and assorted lenses.
Last Edited by Dangermouse on 30/04/2010 - 17:30

K10D

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 17:33
It's a must have piece of kit, IMO.

Regards
cameradextrous _ Motorcycles etc. link

Dangermouse

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 17:38
Just wondering whether it's safe to leave it a bit or whether I should dip into the overdraft until Wednesday. It's interest-free but I like to stay in the black!
Matt

Shooting the Welsh Wilderness with K-m, KX, MX, ME Super and assorted lenses.

Mongoose

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 18:50
if you want a "perfect" set, you'll have to cover all possible types of photography.

For that you will need more than one camera system, Pentax don't have a T/S lens, Canon don't have any pancakes and their pro bodies are huge....I could continue
you don't have to be mad to post here



but it does help

Helpful

whelmed

Link Posted 30/04/2010 - 22:58
Well I'm trying to get a perfect set myself. Where I'm at currently:

Good Zooms: Sigma EX DC f2.8 Macro 18-50mm, Pentax DA* 50-135mm F2.8
All-in-one (wifes favourite): Sigma 18-200mm DC
Primes: 24mm f2.8, 28mm f2.5, 30mm f1.4, 50mm f1.7, 55mm f1.2, 135mm f3.5 (for sale), and 500mm f/8

Where I'm going next to complete the set: 10-20mm, or 12-24mm, and a zoom covering the 200-300mm region. I might got a fast 300mm prime. May even swap my 50-135mm and upgrade to a DA* 60-250mm... but probably not for a bit. Fast glass is an unhealthy addiction!
K-5; Siggy 10-20 f4, 30mm f1.4, 18-50mm f2.8, 70-200mm f2.8; Tammy 400mm f4, 500mm f8
Last Edited by whelmed on 30/04/2010 - 23:13
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