what lens do i need


defoe8

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 11:46
Hi, i have inherited a k20d and somes lenses and know nothing about photography, can anyone adise me.

Tamron AF 70-300mm 1:4-5.6 LD Tele macro(1:2)
SMC Pentax -FAJ 1:3.5(22)-5.6(38 28-80MM-AL
SMC PENTAX-A-1:4-5.6 35-80MM
SMC PENTAX-DA 1:3.5-5.6 18-55MM AL 11

At the moment i would be happy to take good holiday and family photos. I have enrolled in a digital course that starts after easter, hopefully this will help me develop.

Here comes the questions-

What do the lenses do?
Do I have to many of them?
Do some of them do the same job?
Am i confusing myself with so many?
Going on holiday soon which lens should i take?

Thanks for all your help.
Last Edited by defoe8 on 06/03/2010 - 11:52

davex

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 11:59
Hi Defoe,
What do the lenses do?
A) Focus the light onto the sensor.
Do I have to many of them?
A) You can never have too many lenses
Do some of them do the same job?
A) Yes.
Am i confusing myself with so many?
A) Probably, but keep them all anyway; see below.
Going on holiday soon which lens should i take?
A) Pentax 18-55 + Tamron 70-300, this gives a good spread from wide for landscapes to telephoto for wildlife, the Tammy also has a useful macro (close up) function.

I would strongly advise against selling any of your lenses before you have gained some experience. The market in Pentax is rising so you will not lose out if you wait, but more importantly you may well sell something which later on you wish you had kept.

Davex.
K5 + 8mm-500mm zooms and primes
Please feel free to play with any images I post.
My flickr: link

defoe8

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 12:18
davex wrote:
Hi Defoe,
What do the lenses do?
A) Focus the light onto the sensor.
Do I have to many of them?
A) You can never have too many lenses
Do some of them do the same job?
A) Yes.
Am i confusing myself with so many?
A) Probably, but keep them all anyway; see below.
Going on holiday soon which lens should i take?
A) Pentax 18-55 + Tamron 70-300, this gives a good spread from wide for landscapes to telephoto for wildlife, the Tammy also has a useful macro (close up) function.

I would strongly advise against selling any of your lenses before you have gained some experience. The market in Pentax is rising so you will not lose out if you wait, but more importantly you may well sell something which later on you wish you had kept.

Davex.

Thanks for that. Maybe i wasnt specific enough, when i mean what do they do, i would like to know which lens does wide angle, close up, best for taking photos of people, etc. Basic stuff i suppose.

P.s no intention of selling any.
Last Edited by defoe8 on 06/03/2010 - 12:18

Dangermouse

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 12:20
I would agree with the suggestion of which lenses to take on holiday, those two will offer the most useful spread.

The 18-55mm would have been sold with the camera, it's a very well-regarded lens and you can get excellent photos with it. This lens covers wide angle through to a short telephoto and is probably the one to keep on the camera, from what you have there. An all-rounder that will cover most situations.

The 28-80mm was a standard lens in film days, on digital it becomes a short telephoto. I've heard that it feels a bit plastic but produces decent photos, so try it and see what you think. This would be good for things that are slightly too far away for the 18-55mm but it doesn't have the wide angle of the previous lens.

The 35-80mm is another film lens, however as it's an A version it doesn't have auto focus and you will need to tell the camera what focal length you're using in order for the shake reduction to work properly. For this reason I'd advise you put this one aside for now, you already have the same range covered with a more useful lens. If this is the lens I think it is then you wouldn't get particularly good results from it anyway - I have the F version (identical apart from auto focus) and it's very poor.

The 70-300mm will be handy for longer range photography, and seems well thought of although I've never tried it.

Look up "crop factor" - basically as a result of the sensor on a Pentax DSLR being smaller than a frame of 35mm film the lenses become longer than they would be on 35mm. A 50mm lens fitted to a Pentax DSLR is equivalent to a 75mm lens fitted to a film camera. This is why you hardly ever saw lenses shorter than 28mm on film, and why the standard zoom supplied with DSLRs is usually an 18-55mm.

You will probably come across "prime" lenses - these have a fixed focal length (say 28mm, 50mm, etc) and are generally higher quality than zooms as they don't have to make compromises to allow for zooming. They also tend to be more compact and with a wider aperture, meaning that they make your camera a bit handier for walking around with and more effective in low light. Don't go wading in and buying any just yet though, what you have is fine for learning how to use the camera.
Matt

Shooting the Welsh Wilderness with K-m, KX, MX, ME Super and assorted lenses.
Last Edited by Dangermouse on 06/03/2010 - 12:22

Stanovich

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 14:20
Hi,

I agree with everything above, I'd only add that you will get better results with the 70-300 using a tripod (or some other form of support like a 'gorillapod' or bean bag). The longer the lens, the more it amplifies any camera shake.

The K20 is an excellent camera BTW!

Stan
K5IIs & ME Super with FA24-90, DA17-70, DA55-300, misc old primes; Fuji X20.

mckendrick

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 16:13
Dangermouse wrote:
The 28-80mm was a standard lens in film days, on digital it becomes a short telephoto. I've heard that it feels a bit plastic but produces decent photos, so try it and see what you think.

This was one of the first lenses I acquired along the *istD when it first appeared. I was very worried about it's build quality at first. The reason it feels 'plasticy' is that it is plasticy - right down to the fitting surface. It's also very 'rattley' - there's very little to it. I was therefore rather astonished and very pleasently surprised when it turned out some most excellent results.
Bodies: MX, LX, *ist D, K-50, KP

Optics: SMC Takumar 28-80mm 3.5-4, SMC Takumar 80-200 4, SMC M200mm 2.8, SMC A28mm 2.8mm, SMC A50mm 1.7, SMC A100mm 2.8 macro, DA10-17mm 3.5-4.5 Fisheye, DA18-55mm II 3.5-5.6, DA50-200mm 4-5.6

alfiemooon

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 16:33
But if you`ve not got a tripod or any form of support,you don`t need to rush out and buy something "just because",as it were.The Anti Shake on the K20 with the Tamron works well for me...and I haven`t got the steadiest of hands

Being a Novice myself,and not wishing to sound patronising,I think it fair to say that when it comes down to "what does each lens do?",stand up looking at,say,the house across the road.Put your arms out straight to your sides,this is what your camera will see with a lens showing the smaller numbers.Now,as you bring your hands together (still outstretched),this is what your camera will see...a smaller field of view as the number on the lens gets bigger but the "view" is brought closer to you.

(And if I`ve got that wrong,I`ve just made a right t(w)*t of myself...but there`s nothing new there).

Actually,if I remember rightly,there`s a good link somewhere on here I think that shows you in piture form,maybe someone will trawl through the forum and find it,I`m sure I`ve seen it in the last 6 months.

Nic

ps. Enjoy...although I have to admit,since getting my K10D,RW was bang on the money with his album title a few years ago..."Life Through A Lens")

Nic
K10D,K20D
Pentax 18-55,Tamron AF 70-300,Sigma 150-500
Kenko 2X Teleplus MC7
AF 360 FGZ

davex

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 18:45
Quote:
(And if I`ve got that wrong,I`ve just made a right t(w)*t of myself...but there`s nothing new there).

Think you can relax Nic.

For lots of interesting stuff about lenses click Here Includes focal length and depth of field examples.

Davex.
K5 + 8mm-500mm zooms and primes
Please feel free to play with any images I post.
My flickr: link

bwlchmawr

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 18:52
Boy are you going to have fun and produce some great photographs when you get used to using that lot. A K20..mmm!

Good luck and post some shots soon.

Andrew
Best wishes,

Andrew

"These places mean something and it's the job of a photographer to figure-out what the hell it is."
Robert Adams
"The camera doesn't make a bit of difference. All of them can record what you are seeing. But, you have to SEE."
Ernst Hass
My website: http://www.ephotozine.com/user/bwlchmawr-199050 http://s927.photobucket.com/home/ADC3440/index
https://www.flickr.com/photos/78898196@N05

Dangermouse

Link Posted 06/03/2010 - 19:08
I'd agree on the tripod too. If you want something compact (tabletop/rocks/car roof as a rest) then look at either the SLR version of the Gorillapod or the Slik Mini Pro range. Both are a cut above the average small cheap tripod and will cost around the 20 mark (or less).

If you want a larger tripod then there are a few threads about them. You just need to consider whether you want a rock-steady big tripod (can be light but usually bulky) or a slightly smaller tripod. I bought an old Slik 500G for 8.50 on ebay which is fine with my K-m and even fairly large lenses, it might be worth looking at that route if you want a good all-rounder tripod for not much money.

I also have a big Velbon CX-540 which is superbly stable but a bit too bulky to carry around. It's currently in my living room with a set of binoculars bolted on to watch the activity around the bird table!
Matt

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