Standard lens advice


Russ

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 13:01
I have my birthday coming up in 2 days and for the first time in history the family have offered club together to sort out a new lens. Also another first, i may actually buy a brand new lens. Not sure about that bit yet, its whether i can get my head round spending the full amount rather than letting another poor soul take the hit.
Anyway i have narrowed down my selection based on budget and needs (i'm mainly landscapes, seascapes, buildings, flowers and static cars):

Pentax DA 17-70 F4 SDM
Sigma EX 17-50 F2.8 HSM
Sigma DC 17-70 OS HSM (B model secondhand)
Sigma DC 17-70 HSM (C model)
Sigma DC 18-50 F2.8-4 OS HSM
Tamron SP 17-50 F2.8

Have to rule out the Pentax DA* 16-50 due to cost. 300 or there abouts is the max.

One factor i have had to take into account is the SR in my K5 is completely US. So i have no in-body stabilisation. So the lure of the Sigma lenses with OS is quite compelling at this time.
The B model Sigma 17-70 OS HSM is the one that really appeals i think. Anyone have any views on these lenses?

Gravelrash

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 14:31
I have no experience with any of your listed lenses BUT given your list of photo subjects I would strongly consider the DA 18-135. Great usable range, weather sealed and SRS are listing the new, unboxed lens at 325 (+ wasn't there a 10% discount code floating around the forums recently?)

Downside to your wishes is no Sigma OS and it isn't fast but again, looking at your preferred subjects, it would cut down on walkabout kit.

Food for thought or just ignore me. Just sayin'
Steve

Sometimes I'm serious and sometimes not, but I consider sarcasm an artform. Which is it today?

Russ

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 14:50
I had completely forgotten the 18-135. Actually it would be a good choice, except the lack of OS. But WR would be good and i am missing the range of my previous Sigma 18-125 (shouldn't of sold it). Thanks, added to the list.

RalphHardwick

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 15:15
I can give another vote for the 18-135. This is a fantastic walk about lens with good IQ and a very usable range.

I bought mine last week from SRS, as mentioned by Steve. Unfortunately the 10% code I tried didn't work

I have posted examples shot with this lens here: link and here : link
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LennyBloke

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 15:19
Another plug for the 18-135 - I picked one up a while ago not expecting too much from it and was pleasantly surprised
LennyBloke

mcpieman

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 15:24
Yet another vote for the 18-135. I had the Pentax 18-250, sold it to get the faster sharper Tamron 17-50 2.8. I missed the range so sold the Tamron to get the 18-135 and am very happy with it, I don't see much difference in image quality between it and the Tamron, but don't really spend much time looking at sharpness at the edges so it may be worse there.

Russ

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 15:51
Thanks for all the replies. Looks like the 18-135 has jumped straight in at No1. Like the idea of WR, the DC focus, nice build and good range (i found the Sigma 18-125 was spot on). I'll just have to make sure my holding technique is perfect and find extra support where possible to combat shakey images.

ambient housewife

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 15:53
Russ wrote:
... i am missing the range of my previous Sigma 18-125 (shouldn't of sold it). Thanks, added to the list.

I have one of these for sale, although I agree, a cracker of a lens link

MattyH

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 15:58
Right where do I begin, I have owned all three Sigma 17-70mm, the f/4.5, the f/4 OS and the new C and loved them all, owned them in both Pentax and Nikon and Canon fit, it was a case of every time I changed brand I bought the latest sigma 17-70mm as my first lens as it was a no brainier to replace the standard lens, They were all relatively cheap, well build with fast and reliable AF and a step up in image quality from the standard lens you get with you new camera.

I then started to have a few extra penny's to play with and for a time gave up on these standard lenses and spent more time using primes, then a few months ago I needed a all in one lens, something I could travel light with, I.e one camera, one lens and so bought the Pentax 18-135mm and what a lovely lens it is to use, But I don't know whether I was spoilt by primes but I was never blown away by the quality of the images.

So still needing an all in one standard lens but with a bit of quality I invested in the 20-40mm ltd which is superb, but due to a fault it had to be returned and whilst it was away I bought David Storms Pentax 17-70mm f/4 lens to use on a short break away, Well I was blown away, I have now found a zoom lens that matches the image quality of my primes the only other lens I have found the same if my old Pentax F 35-70mm.

I did list this lens on the classifieds as the wife said I had to many lenses and I agreed to sell but I have now withdrawn it as I think I have now found my perfect standard zoom lens,

This was taken this weekend with my K3 with the Pentax 17-70mm of my lad.



On another note I have owned a couple of the Tamron 17-50mm f2,8 both the VC and non VC but never seemed to take to them at all, but others on here quite like them so I might have had bad ones.

Hope that helps a little?

bwlchmawr

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 18:40
I have a Tamron 17-50 which I use exclusively on my K5 but I'd definitely miss image stablisation. It would, of course, be better if a little longer, say 70mm and wider, say 15mm, but it has a constant 2.8 aperture and works very well on the K5, balancing beautifully, sharp when stopped down a little and focusing consistently, even in dim light.

It's also markedly cheaper than the competition which is probably reflected in the slightly plasticy feel, but if others are paying that may not be an issue...
Best wishes,

Andrew

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davidstorm

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 19:28
I would echo Matty's evaluation of the Pentax DA 17-70, I don't know why I agreed to sell it, because it is a brilliant everyday lens with superb IQ.

I still have the Sigma 17-70, but there is something about the Pentax Da 17-70 that is special. It is far better than the Sigma at the long end of the zoom, and not far behind at the short end. Allied to that it has the typical Pentax colours and contrast. All in all, a great lens.

Regards
David
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bforbes

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 19:33
The Pentax 17-70 may be a good lens if you get a good copy. If you don't it's a pain in the proverbial.
Barrie
Too Old To Die Young

http://www.pentaxphotogallery.com/artists/barrieforbes
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MattyH

Link Posted 07/05/2014 - 19:46
bforbes wrote:
The Pentax 17-70 may be a good lens if you get a good copy. If you don't it's a pain in the proverbial.

I think I may have a right cracker then I also own a Leica R6.2 with a 28-70mm Vario Elmar lens which I always thought for a standard zoom lens could never be beaten, well it has now.
Last Edited by MattyH on 07/05/2014 - 19:57

Russ

Link Posted 08/05/2014 - 09:14
Hehe i think i'm more undecided now then before i started the thread

I think this is where i am now:

Sigma 17-70 - Been reading the reviews of the new Contemporary Sigma 17-70 HSM and boy are they glowing. That's in the review section of the other US Pentax forum. Not sure i've seen another lens get so much love from all that own it. Usually there's always someone that like to stick in a bad review.

Pentax 18-135 - The negative review from Photozine aside, the 18-135 seems a well liked lens with added bonus of extra reach and WR plus the DC focus motor.

Pentax DA17-70 SDM - This really appeals too. Pentax glass and coatings. Only negative is the SDM. Should be a plus but after reading reviews and Googling, i stumbled upon so many disgruntled owners cursing SDM. But i think someone once told me Pentax fix it for approx 100 and fit an improved SDM to boot. Is that right?

Sigma DC 17-70 OS HSM (MkII) - This has all the elements i was looking for. Extra reach over the kit lens, faster max aperture, slightly wider, OS, HSM. But a number of reviews on the web said this was the weakest of the 17-70 incarnations? Apparently the MkI has better, all be it slower, optics and the latest C model is easily the better. Is that right? I'm sure i read magazine reviews when it first came out that said it was the other way round.

Decided to just keep to these four, rule out the others. Then try and reduce these four to one. Thanks for all the comments so far, really helped a lot. Brand new appeals in that i'll get a warranty and some chance of returning a lemon. I think at the moment the leading two are the Sigma 17-70 'C' and Pentax 18-135WR open box. Mainly because they are obtainable brand new for the budget.

JohnX

Link Posted 08/05/2014 - 09:45
Russ wrote:


Pentax DA17-70 SDM - This really appeals too. Pentax glass and coatings. Only negative is the SDM. Should be a plus but after reading reviews and Googling, i stumbled upon so many disgruntled owners cursing SDM. But i think someone once told me Pentax fix it for approx 100 and fit an improved SDM to boot. Is that right?

How many reviews have you read stating that SDM is ok? Here's one - it's ok! Most people with problems bleat about it; most without stay quiet!

None of my SDM lenses have failed, including the dreaded 50-135.

Yes, there were problems, but the lens design of the 16-50 and 50-135 might actually be the root cause of the higher than average SDM failure rate for these two lenses.

As to SDM itself, wider reading suggests it's no more or less likely to fail than other manufacturers systems.

The 17-70 is a great lens.
Last Edited by JohnX on 08/05/2014 - 09:46
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