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Old Mar 27, 2006, 5:58 PM   #1
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Finally, after what seems like 1000s of posts, millions of questions, billions of comparisons, I have moved up from my Oly C770, and purchased an *istDS...it should arrive at the end of this week...it comes with the 18-55 kit lens, which will be a decent start for a newbie like me...

Naturally, I am considering lenses for the future...specifically, an 18-200 lens, which I could use as a universal lens until I can start to purchase other need-specific lenses (super wide angle, extreme telephoto, macro, etc.)...

I believe that new lenses in the 18-200 range are made by the 3 independents, Tokina, Tamron and Sigma...

Does anyone have any thoughts on these lens makers???...is any one superior to the other, does anyone have major quality problems compared to the others, metal vs plastic, etc.

I would also like the shortest lens possible, but lens quality comes first (meaning, I would buy the longer lens if the quality of the shorter lens was inferior)...

Someday, I hope to spring for Pentax digital lenses, but the independents can get me there sooner by being less expensive...

Your thoughts are welcome...and needed..
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Old Mar 27, 2006, 6:28 PM   #2
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Hi

I cannot speak for the others manufacturers, I have a Sigma. My First lense purchase after buying My Ds was a Sigma 70-300MM APO DG Macro F4.5/5.6 lense. The price was right and i have been more than happy with the pictures it produces. It is a Big lense, But anything that size Will be.
My inital thought is that Buying the lense that you mention is kinda over Kill Since the kit Lense already covers the 18-55 Range. By going With the 70-300, you have eliminated the overlap. Also Depends on the type of Photography You plan to Do.
If you want to Do Wildlife Nature. The extra range of the Sigma Will Help.
However, the lense Size you Mention Is a Nice size.
Could i also suggest you look at the Pentax 55-200. Might meet your needs.

Sorry for the Book

Just my 2 cents

Edit: Sorry 50-200MM

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Old Mar 27, 2006, 7:48 PM   #3
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the 18-200 is really just asking too much from a lens. if you have the 18-55 kit lens then you ought to consider what BK said.. if i were looking i'd probably get the pentax 50-200. after awhile you will learn what you shoot the most. then would be a good time to start putting together a list of primes that you want. that's when the real LBA kicks in. hope you aren't married with kids!!
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Old Mar 27, 2006, 9:12 PM   #4
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Get the Pentax DA 50-200mm and get used to changing lenses, your images will be better for it. 18-200mm is a very flexible snapshot lens, but there are too many optical compromises, image quality suffers. You may not notice this at first but eventually you will probably wonder why your pictures never seem to look as bright, or sharp as some of the others you see from the same camera.

18-200mm is a great lens for recording family events, for travel when you do not want (or cannot take) a bag of lenses, to avoid sensor dust by never changing lenses or anytime that getting an image is more important than the ultimate quality of the image. These lenses have improved greatly from the 28-300mm film lenses they replace but are still not as good as a quality zoom with less range.

Would I want a lens like that, yes, but would I make it my first lens purchase, no. Having the 18-55mm and the 50-200mm will give better quality, then get the big range zoom later, for when you really don't want to mess with lenses.

Coming from a big zoom digicam, the limitations of lens design for a larger sensor must seem like a step backward. When you get your DS and actually take some pictures and tweak them a little, the lens limitations will be quickly forgotten.

Ira
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Old Mar 27, 2006, 9:47 PM   #5
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I have the Sigma 18-125 and for an all around lens this one is great. Good zoom range and wide angle. It compares well to my kit 18-55 lens in it's range and give me the added zoom to 125.
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Old Mar 28, 2006, 1:56 AM   #6
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I like to hunt around the pawn broker shops for older style lenses (non AF, even M42 Screw Mount) You can find some lovely older lenses with a variety of focal lengths and they will cost you 1/4 of what you will pay brand new.

Buy 1 or 2 of those lenses and see how you feel and work out what you like to shoot, then if you want buy new at a similar focal length to get AF you are buying with some experience at those ranges.
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Old Mar 28, 2006, 10:24 AM   #7
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Thanks for the responses...if I go to pawn shops, how do I know if the lens will fit Pentax???...are they marked on the lens???...I certainly do not want to try and place the lens on the camera and mess up contact points...

Does it matter if they are MF or AF, or do all Pentax lenses fit a new DS???

Thanks
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Old Mar 28, 2006, 11:45 AM   #8
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Marsha7 (Bob) check out this post to see what lenses to avoid:
http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...ht=ricoh+mount


Lenses that are labelled for K-mount will work except for those labelled K/R which may pose the problem described in the above post.

The genuine Pentaz breakdown (for K-mount) is as follows:

- SMC Pentax K - the original K-mount lenses, excellent quality but somewhat heavy, M exposure operation only, MF of course.

- SMC M - the first downsizing, designed for the ME, MX range, same as K except somewhat smaller and lighter, again, M exposure and MF.

- SMC A - the first Auto aperture lenses, designed for the A-series (and P-series)cameras, some consider this range to have some of Pentax's best ever lenses both in optical and mechanical quality, similar to M-series but now can use program exposure modes (still MF however)

- SMC F - the first auto focus lenses, odd looking but good quality, the 70-210mm f4-5.6 seems to be a favourite, fully functional in all program modes.

- SMC FA - the last series of AF film lenses, some good some bad but all fully functional. Firmware is upgraded to send more info to the camera.

- SMC DFA - new series which will still work on film cameras

- SMC DA - digital only.

- anything labelled "Limited" or with an "*" (such as A*, F* or FA*) are the super-deluxe models which we'd all like (and some like ennacac seem to have all of )

- Takumar K-mount or Takumar-A or Takumar-F are actually budget lenses made by Pentax without the SMC coating (there are also lenses labelled Pentax-A or Pentax-F without the SMC in the label, they are the same as the Takumar lenses, budget, non-SMC glass. These are probably as good, or better, than third party consumer lenses and are perfectly compatable since they are made by Pentax.

This is not a complete list of all features, just a sample of what the labels mean. Check out http://www.bdimitrov.de/kmp/for lots of information on K-mount lenses.

Any early K-mount lens (including some very nice Rikenon lenses) should work (as long as there is no P or A setting on the aperture ring).

Allautofocus K-mount lenses should work although some very early Sigmas will sometimes give trouble because the reverse engineered firmware in the lens's chip set amy not communicate with the camera properly (I have an old 28-70mm Sigma that is not properly recognized by my DL as an AF lens)

Ira


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Old Mar 28, 2006, 1:38 PM   #9
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Ira, you are BRILLIANT...you must be a direct descendant of Ansel Adams, or maybe you taught him everything he knew...thanks...:-):G:idea:

Bob
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Old Mar 28, 2006, 2:48 PM   #10
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OK, while my head can still fit through the door:lol:, the other item is a genuine Pentax M42 adapter (some off brands interfere with infinity focus). With this little baby you can now mount any "universal" screw mount lens including the excellent Takumar, Super Takumar and SMC Takumar lenses used in the old Spotmatic days. This includes a number of excellent lenses from companies such as Carl Zeiss (which, by the way, are now producing a new line of very expensive M42 lenses if you want excellent optical quality, but for a price, big bucks and no automation)

Beware of M42 lenses which do not have a switch which allows them to go from an automatic aperture to a manual stop down lens. On the *istDx it must be set on Manual. Also beware of T-mount lenses, they can be mistaken for M42 but they most certainly are not. Here are pictures of the switch I speak of.

Ira
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