Which Lens as Upgrade From Kit Lens


bwlchmawr

Link Posted 26/06/2015 - 07:47
YorkNeil wrote:
I read about the K10D having superb picture quality - last of the pre CMOS machines I think. The Tamron is certainly a consideration - thanks for the suggestion. The photos are not so washed out now that I changed the custom image setting.

Well there you are then.
You might consider shooting RAW files then you can do pretty much anything you like as regards sharpness, contrast and colour. You may even find that the kit you have is pretty much the kit you want...
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
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YorkNeil

Link Posted 27/06/2015 - 05:43
bwlchmawr wrote:
YorkNeil wrote:
I read about the K10D having superb picture quality - last of the pre CMOS machines I think. The Tamron is certainly a consideration - thanks for the suggestion. The photos are not so washed out now that I changed the custom image setting.

Well there you are then.
You might consider shooting RAW files then you can do pretty much anything you like as regards sharpness, contrast and colour. You may even find that the kit you have is pretty much the kit you want...

There I am is right! Much more to this than I first realised. I'm going to spend some time getting to know the camera before committing to a new lens - unless an out of this world deal comes up.

pentax

Link Posted 05/07/2015 - 10:19
I agree with John I bought a new one a the NEC I find it one of the sharpest lenses I have, don't know why the reviews weren't better.
Derek

dcweather

Link Posted 05/07/2015 - 23:17
To give you an idea on price I recently sold an 18-135mm WR which was brand new split from a kit and it went for 235 on Ebay.
Dave

davidstorm

Link Posted 07/07/2015 - 00:08
The 16-45 is excellent, I've had two of them and both were very good. There were a couple of downsides I found though, one was the max aperture of F4 and the other was the limited zoom range which I found a little restrictive for a walkabout zoom. In the plus side it was a great lens for landscape photography.

I now have a Sigma 17-70 F2.8-4, the HSM OS version which I bought from AndrewA. I find this a lot more versatile and it excels in most situations. The F2.8 comes in handy when using it at the wider end.

Regards
David

PS: No-one has mentioned WR in this thread, despite you making reference to it. If you can find a good copy of the DA 18-55 WR, it will cost a lot less than your budget and is a decent lens. The later DA 18-55's seem to get better press than the earlier versions and WR is a good idea if you do a lot of photography outside.
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kh1234567890

Link Posted 07/07/2015 - 08:24
davidstorm wrote:
PS: No-one has mentioned WR in this thread, despite you making reference to it. If you can find a good copy of the DA 18-55 WR, it will cost a lot less than your budget and is a decent lens. The later DA 18-55's seem to get better press than the earlier versions and WR is a good idea if you do a lot of photography outside.

+1
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Jonathan-Mac

Link Posted 07/07/2015 - 09:08
I always recommend the Tamron 17-50 as the best upgrade around. It's not WR but it has great image quality, is compact and decently built. A vast improvement over any of the kit lenses or super-zooms available.

One caveat - try before you buy. Mine worked great from the word go but a lot of people report front or back focusing so it's a good idea to make sure your copy is good before you pay.
Pentax hybrid user - Digital K3 & K200D, film 645 and 35mm SLR and Pentax (&other) lenses adapted to Fuji X digital
Fan of DA limited and old manual lenses

YorkNeil

Link Posted 08/07/2015 - 20:23
Thanks again for all the guidance. I went to a local camera shop and had a look at the WR18-135 but I was a little underwhelmed with it - TBH the guy in the shop was a patronising so and so and I ended up walking out so I probably didn't give it a fair crack!

The 16-45 looks great but I was hoping for something a little more usable in lower light so it may be held back by F4; which brings me to the Tamron or the Sigma. The Tamron seem to have the edge on IQ, from what I read, and is a fair bit cheaper but I will try before I buy. Can anyone recommend a camera shop in or around Leeds? I'm in York myself but I don't mind travelling.

Thanks again

Neil

MrCynical

Link Posted 11/07/2015 - 01:14
YorkNeil wrote:
Thanks again for all the guidance. I went to a local camera shop and had a look at the WR18-135 but I was a little underwhelmed with it - TBH the guy in the shop was a patronising so and so and I ended up walking out so I probably didn't give it a fair crack!

The 18-135 isn't well-regarded in image quality terms (one review site actually sent their copy back to Pentax for repair, only to be told it was working as intended.

johnriley

Link Posted 11/07/2015 - 09:46
The 18-135mm is highly regarded amongst those who use it though, for good reasons. It's a sharp, gritty lens that produces images that look good. High contrast, but lower absolute resolution make it a lens with a useful character to it.

It's the same characteristic that photojournalists liked when they discovered Nikon rangefinder lenses in the 1950s. They looked sharper and grittier than the low contrast, high resolution German lenses they had been using.
Best regards, John
Last Edited by johnriley on 11/07/2015 - 09:48

McGregNi

Link Posted 11/07/2015 - 11:15
I know the 18-135 is a popular choice, mainly due to the good' walkabout' range plus the Wr. So its a one lens solution when you don't want to carry others or make any lens swaps. It does fall more towards the ' convenience category, rather than the IQ and speed end of the range, is that fair to say?

I can understand contrast and resolution in relation to lens characteristics, but what is 'grittiness' ? How can a lens be gritty or not gritty?
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 11/07/2015 - 11:16

johnriley

Link Posted 11/07/2015 - 14:39
Lenses that render detail in a sharp way that gives a gritty appearance to the overall shot. High contrast lenses might have this characteristic. Another description might be "wiry", implying high edge sharpness because of the contrast on low resolution areas.

Another example is the SMC Pentax-M 50mm f/1.4 lens, which is also gritty and also excellent for photojournalism, just like the 18-135mm.

In film terms, when I used Kodak Tri-X (ISO 400) and developed it in FX-39 it gave the images a gritty appearance, with visible grain that was reproduced crisply. If we wanted less grain then Aculux did the trick, but the edge sharpness was lower. The 18-135mm helps me to produce images with a similar characteristic to using FX-39, which is probably part of why I like it.
Best regards, John

McGregNi

Link Posted 11/07/2015 - 21:23
Thanks for that elaboration John.
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

kh1234567890

Link Posted 11/07/2015 - 23:45
johnriley wrote:
Another example is the SMC Pentax-M 50mm f/1.4 lens, which is also gritty and also excellent for photojournalism, just like the 18-135mm.

'Gritty' is not what I would describe my M50 f1.4 as ...

http://www.flickriver.com/photos/kh1234567890/tags/smcpm50mmf14/
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johnriley

Link Posted 12/07/2015 - 00:29
In the context of the film I was using as an example, I was referring to black and white really. As for colour, that generally softens the effect.
Best regards, John
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