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Old Sep 11, 2008, 8:11 PM   #1
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I've got a friend who wants to go beyond a point and shooter.

He likes to take pictures of birds, wildlife, landscapes, street scenes, cars, people, etc.

He would like to get creative once he learns how to use the camera.

He would start off with putting the camera in automatic program, then eventually learn to use aperture, shutter speed, use different metering options, autofocus options, etc.

Is the K200D a camera that a person with little experience can start with and will grow with him as his skilll level increases ?

He is thinking of the Pentax K200D, as he is impressed with my Pentax K10D. His budget is in the K200D level, but not the K20D level.

He is retired, intelligent and tenacious when it comes to learning.

He wants to start off with one lens, before he starts looking at expanding the equipment he gets.

I have recommended as that's his desire and he wants to take pictures of everything from landscapes to wildlife and wild birds then a lens that encompasses a wide range would be in order.

I have suggested the Pentax (Tamron) 18-250 mm zoom. What's the ability of this lens to take sharp pictures ?

I have a Pentax 55-300mm zoom that I'm happy with. Is the 18-250 comaprable to this lens in picture quality?
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 8:51 PM   #2
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lesmore49 wrote:
Quote:
I've got a friend who wants to go beyond a point and shooter.

He likes to take pictures of birds, wildlife, landscapes, street scenes, cars, people, etc.

He would like to get creative once he learns how to use the camera.

He would start off with putting the camera in automatic program, then eventually learn to use aperture, shutter speed, use different metering options, autofocus options, etc.

Is the K200D a camera that a person with little experience can start with and will grow with him as his skilll level increases ?

He is thinking of the Pentax K200D, as he is impressed with my Pentax K10D. His budget is in the K200D level, but not the K20D level.

He is retired, intelligent and tenacious when it comes to learning.
I think that the Pentax K200D would be a great camera for a determined learner to get broken in on.

lesmore49 wrote:
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I have suggested the Pentax (Tamron) 18-250 mm zoom. What's the ability of this lens to take sharp pictures ?
:-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol::-):lol:

TheTamron 18-250 is dim and soft throught its range, has significant distortion at its wide end and significant chromatic aberration at its long end. See http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showp...ct/1009/cat/23

Pentax also has an 18-250 that is a rebranded Tamron.

Your 55-300 is superior to the 18-250.

The kit lens and a Tamron 70-300 Di LD (~$160) might be a good place for him to start. Those two lenses are a good deal cheaper than the 18-250 and provide better image quality..
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 9:56 PM   #3
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While I don't have the K200, I do have a K100. On our most recent vacation, my husband, who's never owned a camera in his life and isn't all that interested in photography, got bored with me and asked to use it. He's used it twice before - once in the car while I was driving and trying to explain how to turn it on and once when we were in Yosemite. I put the camera in "P" mode (not green or scene mode)and let him snap away. Several of his pictures were better than what I took with my K20! He has no idea what aperture means, but the K100 (and I'm sure the K200) is forgiving enough that it didn't matter.

I've seen some reasonable/pretty goodpictures posted taken with the Tamron 18-250, but its best outdoors. I agree with TCav, for general usehe would probably be better off with the kit lens and eitherthe Pentax 55-300 or the Pentax 50-200 (the small size is an advantage, but I suspect it isn't as good as the 55-300), or the Tamron 70-300than with the Tamron 18-250.
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Old Sep 11, 2008, 11:58 PM   #4
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I think that the K200 would be a great starter. The only thought would be to have him try it out first at a local camera shop, to make sure that it agrees with him (size, handling, viewfinder, etc.). I bought a K100 3 years ago, and I am still learning and still have not used the full capabilities of the body. I have shot about 8,000 frames, including some of the worst images ever (learned a lot) and some of the best images (pleased, but did not learn as much).

The 18-250 lens, although an all in one, I believe is just too wide a range to really be any good. Its probably better to probably start with the kit and add when ready. I will say, you see the great images taken by others, and get flustered when yours are not even close. By using the kit, I think that it covers a range much more forgiving and easier to start with.

The K200 essentially is a repackaged K10 (same sensor) with the controls reworked. My K100 has a couple of"features" that are fixed in K200, like sensing the image's orientation so that the browser automatically displays them in the correct orientation.

Overall, if it fits your friend's hands and he likes the viewfinder and the menu system. I really do not see a down side. It should be a really good starter system that can last quite a while....
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Old Sep 17, 2008, 7:54 AM   #5
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Just another point of view-

Take a look at the photos posted by wittetulup who used a Pentax K-100 Super with the Pentax 18-250mm lens (the re-badged Tamron lens) and came home with some really wonderful photos from his African Safari.

While the Pentax 18-250mm lens might indeed be a bit dim, and does have some distortion issues at the wide angle end, it appears to be a great single lens solution kind of lens. No, it will not admit enough light to make it a good high ISO lens, but for the purposes described by the OP, it offers a lot of bang for the buck.

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Old Sep 17, 2008, 8:43 AM   #6
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mtclimber wrote:
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While the Pentax 18-250mm lens ... , it offers a lot of bang for the buck.
Multiple lenses with less ambitious zoom ranges will provide better image quality and cost less.

Convenience? Yes.

Bang for the buck? No.
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Old Sep 17, 2008, 9:22 AM   #7
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TCav-

I won't disagree with you at all. The convenience factor is the real value, at least for me. What would be your best bang for the buck lens choice for the Pentax K-200? Perhaps the Pe3ntax 50-200mm lens?

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Old Sep 17, 2008, 11:04 AM   #8
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mtclimber wrote:
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What would be your best bang for the buck lens choice for the Pentax K-200?
Versus the Tamron (Pentax) 18-250 for $425?

How about the Pentax kit 18-55 for $130 (or $50 when purchased with the body)and a Tamron 70-300 Di LD for $160?
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Old Sep 17, 2008, 11:13 AM   #9
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I must respecfully disagree with tcav on the 18-250. As a newspaper reporter and photo jounalist, I find the lens to be astounding useful for a wide variety of environments including high ISO. Below you will see two examples, one at the long end of the hummingbird and the second at ISO 1600 of an event I covered. As for the K200, I have a K10D and anyone contemplating buying into this system should be prepared for a learning curve. The distinctive Pentax controls are very different from other DSLRs. Once learned, however, they are amazingly useful.
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Old Sep 17, 2008, 11:14 AM   #10
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ISO 1600.
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