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Old Aug 13, 2007, 6:43 PM   #11
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Mark & Roy - thank you both. Now that you mention that info about the lens, I remember. Makes sense. Not too much info at all. I really appreciate it. Share anything you want.

One thing I do not like about my P&S is that I can't zoom as much as I want. It's only 3x and it seems I'm always too far. Then, I'm cropping and that isn't good IQ. I don't need a huge zoom, but more than what I have. I also do not want a large collection of lenses right away... will add to my "collection" as needed. So I want to just start off with 1 or 2 lenses. I'm trying to find the best len(es) to start out with as I re-learn. Then, I'll go from there.

All suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

As far as the Pentax camera goes, I'm having a hard time finding the K10D in a store to seein person. Nothing in my town so I have to go to the city. I've found the Nikon, Sony, Canon, etc... but haven't been able to get my hands on the Pentax yet. That's the only thing left for me to do before I make my decision for sure. I've narrowed it down to the Nikon D80 or Pentax K10D, leaning strongly to the Pentax. I'm worried I won't find one to see before the rebates end.

Everyone here is great... and so helpful. I'm eager to get back into theSLR life. I'll have lots of questions I'm sure!!



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Old Aug 13, 2007, 6:53 PM   #12
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don't know i this will help but being a newbie myself ( i still don't get the lens thing yet )

but my old P&S was a 12x zoom. i i have the same 2 lens you are looking at. if i take a photo with both cameras at full zoom the P&S has just slightly longer reach. i don't know if they measure all P&S the same way or not. so maybe this will not help at all

but that was my way of finding out how much my Pentax could zoom in.
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Old Aug 13, 2007, 6:54 PM   #13
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I'm glad about that.

There are some good superzoom lenses that might be worth considering, Sigma produce a pretty useful 18-200mm lens and if you are looking at the Nikon then there is a Tamron 18-250mm (not yet available in Pentax mount).If you went down this route you would have a really good zoom range and not need to switch lenses.
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Old Aug 13, 2007, 8:50 PM   #14
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julianne wrote:
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but my old P&S was a 12x zoom. i i have the same 2 lens you are looking at.
that's the problem with every maker's statement about the "X" factor. it's meaningless!!! at least with 35mm you had a benchmark of where to start.

amy, i still recommend the two pentax lenses. 18-55 & 50-200
these will do great images and let you get a feel of what you want. next year you will probably get your money back on both if you decide to sell them.

roy
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Old Aug 13, 2007, 9:00 PM   #15
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Roy's right, if you decide you hate both lenses (I highly doubt it, but theoretically)by next year you really will be able to get your money back. Especially if Pentax releases another flagship DA-Compatible camera like the K10D.

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Old Aug 13, 2007, 11:08 PM   #16
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thanks nick,
i just think this a good package a lot better than our rivals

roy
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Old Aug 13, 2007, 11:38 PM   #17
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I want to thank you all again for sharing your thoughts. I am so glad I found this forum. Everyone has been so helpful and I really do appreciate it.

I'm going to make some phone calls tomorrow to try to find the Pentax so I can get my hands on it. Not that I will buy it from any particular place (depends on price), but I need to get a hold of one before I make any decision.

If I don't like the prices that I find in person, I'm thinking about buying online. That makes me a bit nervous. I've been looking at B&H, Beach Camera, and Amazon.com. Not to mention online sources like Circuit City and Best Buy. Does anyone have any recommendations? If I go with the Pentax and order it online, I would like to order both lenses (18-55 kit & 50-200). But I haven't seen the 50-200 available at all of the places online that I've found the camera.

I also wanted to ask about the Pentax "pancake" lens (40mm). What do you think of it?

You all just wait until I actually get the camera in my hands...:-) Just think of all the questions I'll have then.
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Old Aug 14, 2007, 12:38 AM   #18
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Amy,

You referred to the rebate offer. Pentax has been having rolling rebates for at least the last 18 months. As soon as one ends another is announced. I hurried up at the end of last year to ensure that I caught it, and they had a new one available right away.

Another point is that some of the mail order places on the internet, advertise the price AFTER the rebate, others prior to the rebate. Just a little something to watch out for.

As I think someone else may have pointed out, what every you wind up with, in a camera, its pretty difficult to make a wrong decision - as they are all great cameras - Nikon or Pentax. I had a fair amount of experience in the Navy taking pictures of (russian) ships out at sea. The Navy gave me a large assortment of lenses and two bodies. I hated lugging them around - all Nikon. Somewhat based on that experience, and I have had a Pentax Spotmatic for 37 years, I liked the Pentax and went with the K100D. I almost waited two weeks to consider the K10, but saw a comparision and went with the smaller, lighter version that is somewhat less complex. For me that was the right decision - a year later and I still have not used all the settings and features. I am an engineer, and they have not built a computer system fast enough for what I use it for, that being said - I am not really afraid or lack the ability to understand to use every widget and feature of the K10, its just that I figured that the K100 was good for quite a few years until I grew out of it. In some ways, I would like the extra MPs for cropping, and at times a faster write to memory when I am taking multiple images (bracketing) for HDR. However, when I bump up against a limit, there are plenty of ways around it. The point being, the K10 is a great camera, with nearly everything photographers could want - well there are a few who would want more, but even with your experience, it might be more enjoyable with a few less bells and whistles, that is easier to learn and to just enjoy taking images rather than figuring out what you may want to do. There is another thread - I think on the main Pentax forum, from someone with a K10 saying that the learning curve is some what steep and not complaining, just indicating that there are quite a few options that can be set and asking which ones are best. Just a thought.

On the topic of lenses, I picked up the 18-55 kit lens and the 50-200 lens. This really does cover just about everything. Recently I did get get a zoom that goes out to 300 (or 450 in 35mm terms - with the 1.5x crop factor). I was very satisified with the coverage of the initial 2. Very good lenses for the money. Depending on the package with the body, the kit lens in my case was an extra $15 - essentially free. Can't beat that. Beyond 200mm (300mm in 35mm terms), SR or image stablization really does help, and it appears to help to about 300mm. Longer than that, you really do need some sort of assistance - tripod, sholder, railing, tree, something to help you hold steady.

One last thought. Do not give your P&S away. On business trips - at times, I just do not have room to take the Pentax along - so the P&S goes with me. There is a time and place for each of the "tools".

What ever camera you decide upon, it will be a good choice and it is going to be a learning experience. Have fun!
PS - Here is my one lens that I have not been able to use yet - I helped design the tracking system (my software) - its only 9.2 meters - one of the 5 largest systems in the world.
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Old Aug 14, 2007, 9:03 AM   #19
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Now that's a BIG lens!

I'm one that has both the K10 and the K100, and like them both. The K10 is heavier than the D80 (rather significantly) and might not appeal to some because of that. I was actually surprised at how comfortable it is to hold and handle, considering the weight, but it's definitely one you should handle before you buy.

If you buy on-line, B&H is wonderful to deal with (I've bought many things from them) and I've heard that Adorama is just as good, along with Beach/buydig (they are the same company).

The kit lens is one I still use - it does what I want for wide-angle. The DA 50-200 was my other main lens for quite a while - they are a good combination to have initially until you decide what else you might need. I ended up adding a used A*300 lens when I wanted something longer, rather than replace the DA 50-200, which worked out quite well for me. Now I've upgraded to the DA*50-135 (love that lens) and it will be interesting to see if I miss having the range from 135 to 200.
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