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Thread: Pentax lenses

  1. #1
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    Pentax lenses

    I didnt want to blow up the K5 thread to much and therefore thought Iwould start another post about choosing lenses for the K5 and I am hoping for experience from long other Pentax useres (I am new to Pentax).

    What I can add so far is that my Kit lens (18-55WR) seems to be not the sharpest lens specially at the long end end short distances.
    I therefore check out the 16-50/2.8 now.

    I am also planning to look into the primes and find it hard to decide.
    I think it would be 15 and 21 (for the focal length), but then its hard to choose between 31,35macro,40 and 43, and between 70 and 77.
    I got some recommendations for the 43 in the K5 thread.
    On the other side I read that the 40 and 70 do focus a little faster (shorter focus thread) and I would like the smallish size, lower price, and they seem to be good wide open too. (a little slower of course than 43 and 77).

    From reading around the 31 seems to be one of the best ones, but then I dont know if I find the focal length that usefull.

    The 35....can it replace a 40 or 43? Its said to be sharp- but how clinical is it? Is it ok for portrait from short distanceor is it too sharp? How is the bokeh?
    Or would you skip both 40 and 43 and get the 55 as a portraint lens?

    Any feedbakc would be appreciated, also if there are any of those lenses where you feel it is a most have lens.

    Eventually I will get both the 16-50 and some primes, one for light unobstrusive use and the zoom for its weathersealed built and flexibility.

    In the telerange I find the 50-135 interesting.

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    16-50

    Just did the "brickwall-thing" and it seems the 16-50 at f2.8 on the is ok (usable but slightly soft), but at f4.0 sharpens up quite a bit.
    So I would probably try to shoot it af f4.0, and only go to f2.8 when needed for low light etc.
    Overall looks like a nice lens at all focal length. Also the corners look good for my taste.

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    Senior Member ecsh's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax lenses

    15, 31,77 limited and the newer 100 macroWR will be my kit.
    My eyes are blurry from reading so many reviews and looking at so many pics over the last couple of weeks, but that is what i have decided on. Jono made it very hard with the snaps of the 35macro, but in the end the 31 won out.
    Joe

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by ecsh View Post
    15, 31,77 limited and the newer 100 macroWR will be my kit.
    My eyes are blurry from reading so many reviews and looking at so many pics over the last couple of weeks, but that is what i have decided on. Jono made it very hard with the snaps of the 35macro, but in the end the 31 won out.
    Joe
    Hi Joe
    don't give me a second thought - I haven't tried out those other lenses anyway, so I have no proper comparison.

    I'm not planning on a big haul of limited lenses myself anyway - I have the M9 for that - I'm enjoying my 35, and the 50 Zeiss, but I suspect the 16-50 Pentax is going to get the most use . . and now I'm dithering about the 60-250 f4
    aaaaahhhhh!

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    Senior Member ecsh's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax lenses

    60-250, wow. Talk about a range. I got the 15 yesterday, and its a little jewel. These little primes are what attracted me to this system, along with your post. The body with the 77 arrives tomorrow, so it should prove to be a fun Thursday around here with good closeups of the turkey, LOL.
    Joe

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    35mm on Pentax DSLRs is a normal lens, equivalent to 50mm on your D700. I would only buy that for portraiture if you like a normal lens for portraiture. The new DA35 LImited is an excellent performer, but I'd find it a little short.

    The FA43 and FA77 are two of the best lenses in the focal length made. The DA70 is very good too, and smaller/lighter ... has the QuickShift focusing ring so you can manual focus adjust it when AF is engaged. The 43 and 77 are older designs: you need to disengage AF on the body to allow manual focusing.

    My ideal Pentax lens kit now would be 15mm, 21mm, 43mm, 70 or 77mm and the 50-135.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Used primarily the 31 and the 15 during my tour with Pentax. The 31 is really a fantastic lens and would be my primary if I went back to Pentax; lovely rendering and for me a very useful FOV. The 15 is also good, not as sharp maybe as the 31 but very nice robust color and very little flare. I also tried a few zooms and they were fine but nothing memorable. Have heard the 77 is great. Would be nice to have a weathersealed normal FOV prime to skip the zooms altogether.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    I've owned the DA40, and sold it after buying the 43. Now I wish I'd just stayed with the DA40. Not that the 43 is not an excellent lens - it is every bit as good as the hype suggests. However the DA40 is also truly excellent in all normal use, and you have to really split hairs to separate them.

    My lineup now includes the 15 (recent arrival), 21, 31, 43 and 77. I haven't tried the 70.

    Another lens to consider is the older Pentax-F 28/2.8 autofocus lens. This was a sleeper until recently "discovered" by the forums and values have risen. Very good IQ, very fast to focus, and much smaller and lighter then the 31.
    Chris

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    DA vs FA

    I have been debating with myself of FA (43/77) vs DA(40/70).
    Right now I feel the DA will be fine for me. Except maybe the 43 where I would prefer the faster f-stop-dont know yet.
    Other than that smaller size, focus override, slightly faster focus, eventually even slightly better corners? (dont know). Also I find the FA to be quite expensive to be frank.
    What I would like about the FAs is the slightly warmer color rendering (from what I read and see- no own experience so far), and the faster f-stop.

    If anybody has too much timeI hope its ok to post a link here): http://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/p...ited-club.html - I browsed through the first 20 pages and there are many great images for my taste. Nice rendition, strong color, nice bokeh.

    In a few days I can say more and also add some own experience.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Hi Joe
    don't give me a second thought - I haven't tried out those other lenses anyway, so I have no proper comparison.

    I'm not planning on a big haul of limited lenses myself anyway - I have the M9 for that - I'm enjoying my 35, and the 50 Zeiss, but I suspect the 16-50 Pentax is going to get the most use . . and now I'm dithering about the 60-250 f4
    aaaaahhhhh!
    I was wondering about the 60-250/4.0 vs 50-135/2.8.
    Personally I tend towards the 50-135 because its much lighter (600g vs over 1000g), and its f2.8.
    But it probably depends if one plans to use it more for birding, wildlife etc (longer reach needed) or for sports, family, action travel -> faster lens and smaller size, less reach needed)

    For my Nikon I have the 70200VRII which works excellent with converters even wide open. But for my use I realized I dont use the externders often.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    I was wondering about the 60-250/4.0 vs 50-135/2.8.
    Personally I tend towards the 50-135 because its much lighter (600g vs over 1000g), and its f2.8.
    But it probably depends if one plans to use it more for birding, wildlife etc (longer reach needed) or for sports, family, action travel -> faster lens and smaller size, less reach needed)
    Actually (according to the Pentax website)
    60-250 = 1040
    50-135 = 765

    Photozone seemed to like the 60-250 better; it's pretty good right the way through the range, but the 50-135 doesn't seem that good at 135 . . .

    for me it's so reminiscent of my old perfect kit (E1/E3 12-60 50-200), but with the advantages of much better resolution and higher ISO.

    . . . . and the ISO is also relevant here - I went to try the 60-250 in the store, and was shooting at f9 1/200th at ISO 6400, and the combination of the IS and high ISO was giving perfectly acceptable results. What I'm getting at is that the ability to shoot at much higher ISO makes the stop difference less relevant.

    Assuming the quality is about the same, then you're getting twice the range for an extra 300gms - not drastic I think.

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    For my Nikon I have the 70200VRII which works excellent with converters even wide open. But for my use I realized I dont use the externders often.
    That's what I found with mine - and I used the much less good 80-400 much more often as a result . . . . . which was really the final push toward getting the 60-250.

    I can fit the K5 with 16-50, the 60-250 the 35 macro and the 50 f1.4 together with an ipad into my little fogg b-sharp bag, which is for now a 'finished' kit.
    Last edited by jonoslack; 24th November 2010 at 02:49.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    I liked the 50-135 far more than the 60-250 for two reasons:

    - The 50-135 is a fixed length lens with no tromboning as you zoom or focus. It is better made and will stay in alignment a lot longer as a result.

    - The extra stop of speed is particularly useful with a longer lens.

    I so rarely want or need much longer than a 135 on 16x24mm format, longer focal length zooms are simply not all that interesting. If I wanted longer than the 50-135, I'd want one of the DA*200/4 lenses.

    The image quality of the 50-135 is excellent. Ignore silly lens tests ... I made a lot of photos with it at 135mm and NONE were poor on technical quality.

    Regards the 31mm Limited ... I owned and use all the Pentax Limiteds up until when I stopped using Pentax equipment in early 2009. This lens was particularly expensive ... over $900 ... and I have to say it was my least favorite lens of the Limiteds:

    - It's heavy and large for a 35mm.
    - The fixed, non-removable lens hood is designed for 35mm Film format, not the DSLR format, and makes fitting a deeper hood for the DSLRs difficult.
    - The fixed hood also means you need a special lens cap, which costs over $60 if you lose it. And*it makes using polarizer filters a pain.
    - I found it flared quite a lot in night shooting if any slightly out of the frame street lights were on.

    I sold it, bought the FA35/2 AL for a third the money. It was lighter, smaller, didn't have the stupid fixed hood, returned only slightly less superb bokeh at f/2 (and almost identical at f/2.8). The new 35/2.8 macro Limited is even better.

    Yeah, the FA31 irritated me a lot. ;-)

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    Senior Member ecsh's Avatar
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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Godfrey
    Thats good to know. I may have to rethink my 31 obsession. I did like what i was seeing from the 35 macro, so maybe this is my way. In any case, once the body gets here, i can decide later.
    Joe

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Today I shot some comparisons between the 16-50 and 15,21 and 35 macro.

    1) the 15 shows quite a bit vignetting at f4.0, much more than the zoom at 16mm. I have to do further testing but it also like the corners dont look that great compared to the zoom
    Overall it seeems the least best of those limited - also with f4.0 the slowest

    2) both the 21 and 35 convince fully compared to the 16-50. The zoom did fine at but the limiteds are somwhat sharper at f3.2, specially in the corners, and show an overall slightly "clearer" image. The K5 exp metering exposed images with the limited lower/darker. dont know why.
    The Primes also showed less CA (The zoom did finebut the primes did a little better)

    3) I also found out that my 16-50 seems to have a very slight problem at the wide right site with a slight softness; not a big deal but also not 100% perfect IMO

    Conclusion for now: Right now I tend to bring the zoom back and go with primes. The 21 and 35 so far convince me, the 15 I have to do further test but it looks like its not totally up to my expectations (slow, vignetting, soft corners and side)

    These limited lenses are really nice and small; I like the feel and look. I wonder if this one 15 is not so great or if the 15s are overall not that great.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    I liked the 50-135 far more than the 60-250 for two reasons:

    - The 50-135 is a fixed length lens with no tromboning as you zoom or focus. It is better made and will stay in alignment a lot longer as a result.

    - The extra stop of speed is particularly useful with a longer lens.

    I so rarely want or need much longer than a 135 on 16x24mm format, longer focal length zooms are simply not all that interesting. If I wanted longer than the 50-135, I'd want one of the DA*200/4 lenses.

    The image quality of the 50-135 is excellent. Ignore silly lens tests ... I made a lot of photos with it at 135mm and NONE were poor on technical quality.
    Well, I don't think the tests said that it was poor at 135mm, just that it was less than stellar (unlike the 60-250).
    Interestingly, the 200mm figures for the 60-250 are as good as those for the 200 DA f2/8 (nobody seems to have tested the f4 ).

    I quite agree about the fixed length lens, tromboning is most un-esthetic, but I don't think it has a huge effect in real life.

    The extra stop is always nice - but much less of an issue when you have really useable high ISO

    But from a little experience (and lots of reading) the 60-250 seems to be a great lens (the tripod mount is great too), and together with the 16-50 it makes a compact kit with a 24-387 focal length range - not bad.

    So, for a little tromboning, a missing stop and an extra 300 gms you get almost double the focal length range without much of a downside, certainly not optically.

    Carrying both the 50-135 and the 200 f2.8 is a big hoick in weight, and still doesn't give you the range, or any very obvious optical benefit.

    Horses for courses Godfrey!

    I agree with you about the 31/35s though.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Everything i read on the 15 seemed to say it was a very good lens. It was supposed to be good at f4, but best at 5.6-8.
    Joe

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    Today I shot some comparisons between the 16-50 and 15,21 and 35 macro.
    Hi Thomas
    Interesting stuff - the little 35 macro really is a stunner isn't it.
    I'm okay with my 16-50, I've tested it quite thoroughly and know that it
    1. isn't perfect
    2. is pretty darned good.

    I am quite tempted by the 21 though . . . but I think I should stick where I am for a few weeks now! (I'm also tempted by the 77).

    all the best

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    Today I shot some comparisons between the 16-50 and 15,21 and 35 macro.

    1) the 15 shows quite a bit vignetting at f4.0, much more than the zoom at 16mm. I have to do further testing but it also like the corners dont look that great compared to the zoom
    Overall it seeems the least best of those limited - also with f4.0 the slowest ...
    The 15 Limited post-dated my time with Pentax gear so I have no direct experience using it.

    I had the DA14mm f/2.8, which is a superb performer. It was good at f/2.8, better at f/4, and plateaued at f/5 holding that with only subtle change to f/11 when diffraction started to degrade the image quality quite a lot. Most of what I shot with it was at around f/5.6-f/8.

    The DA12-24/4 is almost as good, great performance for a zoom lens in this range, but I didn't have much time to use it.

    I prefer primes over zooms most of the time. Only two exceptions in recent years are the 50-135/2.8 on the Pentax and the 11-22/2.8-3.5 on the Olympus. The latter is stunningly good.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    I prefer primes over zooms most of the time. Only two exceptions in recent years are the 50-135/2.8 on the Pentax and the 11-22/2.8-3.5 on the Olympus. The latter is stunningly good.
    I like what it takes to get the image - and often that's zooms.
    If one were to go for 'ultimate quality' then surely MF is the answer - everything else is a compromise to one degree or another (although an M9 with a summulux 50 at 160 ISO isn't much of a compromise )
    Once we have smaller sensors with AA filters, then it's a sliding scale of compromises. Zooms are usually good for getting the image.

    Which is why I like to travel with a body and a couple of reasonable zooms, better still if they're water resistant.

    When you suddenly see a deer nose to nose with a pheasant 100 yards away, you need something reasonably long . . . and you need it on the camera, not in the bag.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Browsing around and reading more about the 15mm -> people write that it needs to be stopped down if you want better corners.
    I want to do further testing before deciding if it works for me ore not.
    The Nikon 14-24 is a very good lens--but I seldemly bring it because of its size.
    I might accept some optical compromises for the size, as long as I feel the IQ works for most of my subjects.

    Two more things:
    1) One thing I understood after playing around with Sony A55 and K7 + various lenses: I understood how good those Leica M lenses are. I replaced my Leica 24/2.8 some time ago because I thought it was slow with a 24/1.4.
    Today I ask myself if a 15/4.0 which needs to be stopped down for consistent IQ works for me.

    2) Overall those DA limited lenses feel really good and overall seem to deliver quite good IQ - they feel a bit like a modern version of Leica M lenses to me

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    1) One thing I understood after playing around with Sony A55 and K7 + various lenses: I understood how good those Leica M lenses are. I replaced my Leica 24/2.8 some time ago because I thought it was slow with a 24/1.4.
    Today I ask myself if a 15/4.0 which needs to be stopped down for consistent IQ works for me.

    2) Overall those DA limited lenses feel really good and overall seem to deliver quite good IQ - they feel a bit like a modern version of Leica M lenses to me
    I agree with you - but I still rather feel that what we really need for small prime lenses is an M with this kind of high ISO.

    On the other hand, for me this is looking more and more like my perfect little travel SLR kit - I know you aren't totally enamoured with the 16-50, but I'm getting to like it, and the new 60-250 seems like a great lens.

    It's no replacement for my M9 and the lovely little primes aren't a replacement for M lenses, nor is it a replacement for the A900 with Zeiss lenses, but I think it might get used quite a lot in the gaps!

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    I like what it takes to get the image ...
    So do I. I find most of what I get when snapping around at widely varying focal lengths with a zoom lens is crap. If you get worthwhile photographs doing that, more power to you.

    It has nothing to do with getting "ultimate quality" or any such nonsense. It has to do with the fact that when I'm doing Photography, I'm concentrating on a specific subject matter, a specific way of seeing, and whether I have a zoom on the camera or a prime, I'm leaving it where it is and working the field of view, perspective, timing and framing to get what I want. It has much more to do with the fact that a fast, high quality prime lens is usually smaller, lighter, and handier to work with than a zoom, aside from that the quality is usually better.

    Case in point: I can carry a 25mm f/2.8 lens set to f/4 by fitting a ZD 25/2.8 which weighs four oz and is less than an inch long, or I can fit a Vario-Elmarit-D 14-50/2.8-3.5 ASPH OIS which is 7 inches long and weighs more than a pound. Both return superb quality photos. I know which is handier, is going to intrude on the subject less, and I know which is more versatile. Handiness counts for a lot more than focal length versatility for me, most of the time.

    My travel kit is usually one to three lenses: a nice kit is an ultra-wide, a normal and a short portrait tele.

    When you suddenly see a deer nose to nose with a pheasant 100 yards away, you need something reasonably long . . . and you need it on the camera, not in the bag.
    When I suddenly see a deer nose to nose with a pheasant 100 yards away and I'm NOT out shooting wildlife with appropriate lenses on the camera, I enjoy the sight ... and then go back to doing Photography. :-)

    It's a matter of focus, attention and the level of opportunistic shooting appropriate to the Photography I want to do. When I look at exhibitions and photo books that are the most successful, the vast majority show work made with one focal length, often one lens, with a small percentage of other fields of view used in to effect, express, specific things in contrast. The worst are the ones where every shot in sequence is made with a different focal length, as if the photographer had no idea in his/her head what sort of photographs they were making and what they were trying to express: they just zoomed in and out until they make a pleasing framing and pressed the button. Most such books are just a jumble of chaotic junk.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Jono and Godfrey,
    You are both right, of course, and there's very little dividing your points of view. The interesting thing is that Pentax, even with a relatively limited (or should that be "Limited"?) lens lineup, seems to have exactly the lenses needed for the kind of photography both of you (and mostly myself as well) like to do; some excellent, small primes and some very good zooms, all of the latter tailor-made for the DX format.

    For a lightweight kit, more or less regardless of focal lengths chosen, Pentax is very hard to beat, and the only candidates I see, are Olympus (but they lack the primes) or a 5D with legacy lenses (an M9 is so far out of my range that I shouldn't even be allowed to dream about it). This is also one of my problems with Nikon: the new primes are very nice, but they are big and bulky, and the combined weight of 24 + 50 + 85mm f/1.4 in many ways negates the purpose of primes for travel. And don't even mention the cost. I could probably buy all of the Limited primes for the cost of those three. The 85mm alone costs more or less the same as the 77mm Limited with a K5 attached. That's food for thought...

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorgen Udvang View Post
    ... The interesting thing is that Pentax, even with a relatively limited (or should that be "Limited"?) lens lineup, seems to have exactly the lenses needed for the kind of photography both of you (and mostly myself as well) like to do; some excellent, small primes and some very good zooms, all of the latter tailor-made for the DX format.
    That's why I became involved with Pentax in 2004. I was not happy with my Canon kit, for various reasons, and was looking for something that would achieve an improvement. Pentax at that time didn't have bodies at the same grade as Canon in many ways, but they had a good sensor in an inexpensive body. And they had a good library of the lenses I liked, primarily primes. I did a lot of photography with that gear ...

    I went to FourThirds for a couple of reasons, mostly because I wasn't all that happy with Pentax bodies, and found that it suited me very well.

    For a lightweight kit, more or less regardless of focal lengths chosen, Pentax is very hard to beat, and the only candidates I see, are Olympus (but they lack the primes) ...
    My kit today is still primarily prime lenses ... I don't need a lot, I just need the ones that count for my work. And the whole kit is pretty compact and light weight ... E-5, 11-22, 25, 35, 50 lenses, EC14, and all my other necessities excluding lighting gear and tripod fit in a Domke F3X bag nicely and the whole kit weighs around 8 lbs complete. I don't carry all of that most of the time even ... my usual shooting carry is a much smaller Billingham L2 with body and one or two lenses, 4 lbs or so.

    This works nicely for me. It's about what I want to carry, and work the way I want to work. Others choose other solutions, each with their own compromises.

    Life is good. ;-)


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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    My kit today is still primarily prime lenses ... I don't need a lot, I just need the ones that count for my work. And the whole kit is pretty compact and light weight ... E-5, 11-22, 25, 35, 50 lenses,

    Life is good. ;-)
    That's very similar to the E-1 kit I used to carry; 11-22 plus OM 35/2.0, 50/2.0 macro and 100/2.8. Exchange the E-1 for an E-5, add a 50-200 and use the GH1 for backup (or even skip the 50-200 and buy a Panasonic 100-300 for the GH1), and I could probably sell most of my Nikon gear. Hmmmm....

    Oh well, we're way off topic. Back to Pentax!

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Jorgen Udvang View Post
    That's very similar to the E-1 kit I used to carry; 11-22 plus OM 35/2.0, 50/2.0 macro and 100/2.8. Exchange the E-1 for an E-5, add a 50-200 and use the GH1 for backup (or even skip the 50-200 and buy a Panasonic 100-300 for the GH1), and I could probably sell most of my Nikon gear. Hmmmm....

    Oh well, we're way off topic. Back to Pentax!
    :-)

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    If one goes zooms, I think three, Pentax and Canon and Nikon (and Oly) do offer some nice lenses which are optically good and do offer an size advantage over the full frame lenses.
    However the D300 does not take that much advantage over the smaller sensor. It is nearly as big and heavy as the D700.
    Also I agree if you go primes Nikon and Canon do not offer anything comparable to the nice small Pentax primes - they are not the fastest but they are optically quite good and so nice and small.
    As I said before I often left Nikon lenses (and I have some very nice ones) at home because they are just too big etc. Thats also one reason why right now I skipped my idea to check out the A900+24-70 Zeiss.

    The M9 on the other side offers even smaller and better primes (for a much higher price) and Leica M is the one and only system I have used now for over 20 years - and I also believen even though I have spent a lot of money its very stable value. The only things it doesnt offer are a) AF and b) not so great for Tele and macro. I have a 135mm M lens but find that allready hared to reliably focus and also the limit regarding framing (small frame) with the Leica M. Also I do have a small daughter (soon two) and while I have taken some very nice images of kids with the Leica M there are some activities where you can get another sort of images when you have a good and fast and reliable AF.
    I write this to justify why I use both-the M9 with primes and the K5 with some primes and a telezoom.

    Now the "big" one (ff DSLRs like Nikon D700 and A900 and 24-70/2.8 and 70-200/".8 etc) do offer even faster AF, better high ISO (in case of Nikon and Canon)thinner DOF and more speed.
    But I do even consider that the K5 AF and high ISO are so close for my type of photography that I might find out after some time that I do not need such system (in my case Nikon FF) any more. Time will tell.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Jono,
    I am afraid with too much testing and pixel peeping one can find some weak points for every lens on earth.
    I shall stop soon. On the other side I want tomake sure the lenses /samples I buy are good ones.
    I will definatly keep the 21/35/70 Limiteds (those are used but mint) and its a good chance for me to get them for a reasonable price. I have not yet decided about the 15 and also not yet about the 16-50. If the Limitids would not exist I would just keep the 16-50. I dont know yet if I will need both, a zoom and the primes and therefore probably first try to live with the primes (and a tele zoom) and see how that works.

    HOw do you like the new tele so far? Do you find it fully usable wide open?

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    Jono,
    I am afraid with too much testing and pixel peeping one can find some weak points for every lens on earth.
    I shall stop soon. On the other side I want tomake sure the lenses /samples I buy are good ones.
    Me too - quite right - test away, and when you've decided it's okay, stop even thinking about it!

    My situation is really the same as yours (M first, then BIG slr, now small slr)

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    I will definatly keep the 21/35/70 Limiteds (those are used but mint) and its a good chance for me to get them for a reasonable price. I have not yet decided about the 15 and also not yet about the 16-50. If the Limitids would not exist I would just keep the 16-50. I dont know yet if I will need both, a zoom and the primes and therefore probably first try to live with the primes (and a tele zoom) and see how that works.

    HOw do you like the new tele so far? Do you find it fully usable wide open?
    It certainly seems to be absolutely fine (but perhaps you're more rigorous than I am), right from f4 and from one end to the other - of course, it's not tiny, but it's nothing like as big as the old 70-200 Nikon, and with nearly twice the range . . .

    all the best

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    Jono,
    I am afraid with too much testing and pixel peeping one can find some weak points for every lens on earth.
    I shall stop soon. On the other side I want tomake sure the lenses /samples I buy are good ones.
    I will definatly keep the 21/35/70 Limiteds (those are used but mint) and its a good chance for me to get them for a reasonable price. I have not yet decided about the 15 and also not yet about the 16-50. If the Limitids would not exist I would just keep the 16-50. I dont know yet if I will need both, a zoom and the primes and therefore probably first try to live with the primes (and a tele zoom) and see how that works.

    HOw do you like the new tele so far? Do you find it fully usable wide open?
    You have a private message

    Peter

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    took some moreimages with the 15 Limited.
    While corners are soft at f4.0, they look ok and usable at f5.6 and at f8.0 verything seems totally fine. So dont use it wide open if corners are important, and stop it down to f5.6 at least, even better f8.0 when shooting landscape where you want sharpness all over the image.

    I think I could live with that keeping in mind that it is so nice and small and 15mm wide. (1mm wider than the 16-50 and 2 wider than 17-70/kit lenses).
    You can see the difference in angle.

    today it rained I thought - the sealing of lenses makes sense. but that might be to much of a wish to have sealed limiteds

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Has anyone tried the 12-24 ED, on a K5 or other Pentax?

    Thanks

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by mbroomfield View Post
    Has anyone tried the 12-24 ED, on a K5 or other Pentax?
    Yes, briefly, some time ago on *ist DS and K10D bodies.
    A very good lens. I already had the DA14 so didn't need it, but the performance seemed very good, nearly on par with the DA14.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by mbroomfield View Post
    Has anyone tried the 12-24 ED, on a K5 or other Pentax?

    Thanks
    I have read some reviews over the last days and they mostly say that the 12-24 is an excellent lens/ better than the 15 Limited for example.
    Personally I prefer the small size of the 15 though

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    I have read some reviews over the last days and they mostly say that the 12-24 is an excellent lens/ better than the 15 Limited for example.
    Personally I prefer the small size of the 15 though
    I bought a 12–24 (actually designed—and maybe built—by Tokina) on eBay a few months ago and it is one of the two best zoom lenses I have ever used. The other was a Tamron SP 35–80 many years ago.

    I understand the 12–24 is sharper than the 15 which disappointed in photozone’s review. Distorts somewhat but is surprisingly good wide open.

    I’ll look for some available light samples. Shot products with it too.

    Tokina and Pentax are both owned by Hoya BTW.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by mediumcool View Post
    I bought a 12–24 (actually designed—and maybe built—by Tokina) on eBay a few months ago and it is one of the two best zoom lenses I have ever used. The other was a Tamron SP 35–80 many years ago.

    I understand the 12–24 is sharper than the 15 which disappointed in photozone’s review. Distorts somewhat but is surprisingly good wide open.

    I’ll look for some available light samples. Shot products with it too.

    Tokina and Pentax are both owned by Hoya BTW.
    Review of the 12–24 zoom.

    And one of my next lens, the 70mm 2.4!

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    50-135/2.8

    Yesterday night I received the 50-135/2.8 and have to say from some first quick comparisons at 70mm with the 70Limited prime I am very happy with the 50-135.
    Even at f2.8 IQ is allready good and sharp. The Zoom did not show purple fr. in some images where the 70 Prime did show some purple fr.
    The colors of the zoom are slightly warmer than the 70, and if you use preset WB (cloudy) the zoom colors appeared slightly more close to reality than those of the prime.
    Also the bokeh of the zoom seems a little smoother than that of the 70 prime (which doesnt have a bad bokeh at all)
    The size of the zoom is really nice for such a range and speed. Wow, I am impressed. I didn expect the 50-135 to beat the zoom.
    This is just from first observations, not a methodical test and I hope the lens will be as good as my first impression let me hope.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Cannot help myself, but looking into the Photozone reviews I must say that some of the Nikkor glass has definitely better results than the Pentax glass.

    Especially if you compare the Nikkor 2.8/17-55 with the Pentax 2.8/16-50.

    Or take the Nikkor 10-24 compared with the Pentax 12-24.

    Not to speak of the Nikkor 2.8/24-70, which would be unfair, but this lens shows what is optically possible and it really rocks!

    Why is everybody so enthusiastic about Pentax glass ????

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    Cannot help myself, but looking into the Photozone reviews I must say that some of the Nikkor glass has definitely better results than the Pentax glass.

    Especially if you compare the Nikkor 2.8/17-55 with the Pentax 2.8/16-50.

    Or take the Nikkor 10-24 compared with the Pentax 12-24.

    Not to speak of the Nikkor 2.8/24-70, which would be unfair, but this lens shows what is optically possible and it really rocks!

    Why is everybody so enthusiastic about Pentax glass ????
    From my experience I agree that the Nikon 17-55/2.8 (on D300) at f2.8 was better than the 16-50 I tested at f2.8

    However in case of the 50-135/2.8 the lens seem to be very good and its not possible to compare it to Nikon since there is not such lens from Nikon. You either carry the beautiful (and larger and expensive) 70-200/2.8VRII or you accept a zoom lens with slower f-stop.

    In case of the Limited primes - they are not superfast but they are optically good, they have a very nice bokeh, a very good build. Same here, I dont doubt the Nikon 24/1.4 or 50/1.4 or 85/1.4 or 105/2.0 are even slightly better in some respects and of course faster, but they are also much bigger and more expensive.

    I think Pentax just offers some ( a little slower) nice semi-pro lenses in a nice solid small built. With Nikon you choose between the super pro glass (and of course you have many many more options here), expensive, heavy and great or you go more the consumer direction. Pentax is a nice option in between IMO.

    Thats my opinion so far with limited Pentax experience and a long Nikon experience.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    From my experience I agree that the Nikon 17-55/2.8 (on D300) at f2.8 was better than the 16-50 I tested at f2.8

    However in case of the 50-135/2.8 the lens seem to be very good and its not possible to compare it to Nikon since there is not such lens from Nikon. You either carry the beautiful (and larger and expensive) 70-200/2.8VRII or you accept a zoom lens with slower f-stop.

    In case of the Limited primes - they are not superfast but they are optically good, they have a very nice bokeh, a very good build. Same here, I dont doubt the Nikon 24/1.4 or 50/1.4 or 85/1.4 or 105/2.0 are even slightly better in some respects and of course faster, but they are also much bigger and more expensive.

    I think Pentax just offers some ( a little slower) nice semi-pro lenses in a nice solid small built. With Nikon you choose between the super pro glass (and of course you have many many more options here), expensive, heavy and great or you go more the consumer direction. Pentax is a nice option in between IMO.

    Thats my opinion so far with limited Pentax experience and a long Nikon experience.
    Agree, there is no counterpart fast tele zooms in the Nikkor DX lineup compared to Pentax - so one needs to go FF there, which is more expensive and adds heavy weight.

    But the good old 2.8/17-55 (this has an age of almost 7-8 years) is still a stellar performer. As is the new 10-24 Nikkor.

    I wonder if one uses consequently the DX glass, also if not as fast but in many cases with VRII already in combination with a D7000 this would not result in a cheaper, lighter and IQ wise sometimes even higher solution.

    Also reading (no personal practical experiences here) the D7000 reviews (BTW they are mixed, as are the K5 reviews) but at least most reviewers seem to agree that the D7000 is the Nikon DSLR with best and most accurate color and WB out of the box. So this should also be no longer the killer argument for Nikon.

    WRT weather sealing - well we should try holding both cameras under running water with a good weather sealed lens and see how long they survive. I do not give anything here on reviews, marketing and tests, because also the M8 proved for me to be weatherproof enough although lot of people complained in different forums. And I want to note that I am pretty demanding WRT weather sealing.

    What argument remains then for Pentax? Small standard primes - ok. Question is what their function is in times when good zooms are at the performance level they are today

    But I understand this is all of course personal preferences as well and not just technical .....

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    ...
    What argument remains then for Pentax? Small standard primes - ok. Question is what their function is in times when good zooms are at the performance level they are today

    But I understand this is all of course personal preferences as well and not just technical .....
    Argument for me for the K5 would be the small primes as you said (not so much because I think its opticall ybetter but those lenses are tiny, unobstrusive-not much bigger than Leica M lenses), the small and still very good tele-zooms (I do find f2.8 usefull for some subject isolation), IBIS (which again makes much sense with those primes), out of camera color (subjective), very well damped shutter (quiet).

    For the Nikon D7000 I would see one big argument (for you and it would be also one for me): you allready have very good lenses and could usethe D7000 not only as a smaller body but also as a second body with your D700. You can use the same flash. Also you/we are allready used to Nikon menue structure and user interface. (not so hard to learn the Pentax UI though)

    In the end I think both options have so many pros and few cons that you can just decide from your stomach. If you decide from your head you will realize that we both do not need either d7000/K5 but could just use the D700
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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    What argument remains then for Pentax?
    IQ:size ratio. K-5 with the 40 and 21 limited pancakes -- hard-pressed to find anything other than an M9 to deliver that IQ in that size. Plus it's weatherproof if you carry a small WR lens, has good color and has a shutter quiet enough that it's actually a significant factor in choosing between cameras.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    What argument remains then for Pentax?
    Small sized body - good small(ish) fast zooms (16-50, 50-135, 60-250) - all weathersealed (and yes, people have washed under taps).

    Nice files - decent colour - very quiet shutter.

    Results

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Folks,

    you are really making me nervous to buy this K5 beast

    Gear slut as I am this can happen sooner than later

    Anyway I agree with most you say here.

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    Folks,

    you are really making me nervous to buy this K5 beast

    Gear slut as I am this can happen sooner than later

    Anyway I agree with most you say here.
    HI Peter
    I still think you'd be better with a Nikon 7000 - you like the colour, and you already have the pro lenses - that's where I'd be going if I were in your position.

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Peter,
    one point for Nikon is the AF.
    While the K5 works fine I feel it is not allways as accurate as that of my D700.
    I dont know about the D7000 though

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Folks,

    my brain says go for the D7000 plus 2.8/17-55 but my stomach says try the K5 and some nice Pentax glass - you know how that goes.

    But so far my brain has won the battle still holding off to buy, because - right - I could do all with my D700 and even better, just with more size an weight ....

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    Folks,

    my brain says go for the D7000 plus 2.8/17-55 but my stomach says try the K5 and some nice Pentax glass - you know how that goes.

    But so far my brain has won the battle still holding off to buy, because - right - I could do all with my D700 and even better, just with more size an weight ....
    dont rush. wait until you now if/what you want. thats my suggestion
    or make a 1 day trip to Frankfurt and borrow my K5 and shoot around Frankfurt and then decide

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    Ok, had the 15 LTD and 77 LTD. Sent the 15 back. It was way too soft wide open, and did not get sharp until 5.6-8. A couple of guys on the Pentax forum told me not to bother with another copy, as thats how it is. The 77 is sharp wide open, and sharper at F4. Its a keeper. Great range for me in a small package. Got the newer 100 2.8 macro WR, and its sharp wide open as well. Beautifully made also, as well as small. What a nice lens that is. Have the 50-135 on the way to see how that is now.
    Fun times ahead.
    Joe
    Joe

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    Re: Pentax lenses

    HI Joe
    I think I'm going to have to revisit the 100 WR . . . . but today in the snow I've been having a lot of fun with the 60-250, snappy focusing, no worries about wet and cold - and even a few good shots on a drab grey day.

    Just this guy you know

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