I've made what amounts to my final adjustment in the Pentax gear. I let the K200d and Tamron 18-200 go as a package, having found two excellent (I hope!) used deals.
The first was a K-x in 'excellent' condition for under $400. I've enjoyed several excellent cameras in my recent past, but no camera with an excellent sensor. Given this chance to see what one can do, I've allowed that to overrule my wish for a weather-sealed camera for now. The more I read about this sensor, in the Sony A500 and k-x/k-r cameras, the more it appeals to me. I really didn't want to step up to 16Mpixels, since several of my lenses may not be up to the capabilities of the A580/K-5 cameras - and my budget wasn't up for those anyway. Having owned both 18-200 models now, I still feel that they are great for 10Mpixel sensors but perhaps best left there; it's a fun range, but with a great sensor I fear the images would not be well served by a do-it-all lens. I can't say with any proof, it's just a feeling - but I'll go with that.
Deal number two was also surprising, and allowed the 18-200 to move on: a gently-used, 1st-generation Sigma 17-70 lens. I owned this lens with my A200 and thought very highly of it: f/2.8 at widest setting, a reasonable f/4.5 at the long end, close focusing, very good sharpness and bokeh... it's a great package that I welcome back into my bag. I was sure that I'd have one of these in Pentax mount when I first made the switch from Sony, but the DA 16-45 caught my eye for a while. Its range was just too confining for me though, and the 18-55wr also caught me short on the telephoto end at times. I like the concept of the DA 17-70, but the price on this Sigma was excellent. The other temptation was another Sigma, the newer 18-50HSM that zooms and focuses internally; how interesting to see a lens in that range that does not extend while zooming!
I say these changes are coming Fast because I expect them to both be delivered in the next three hours! I also received my new 72mm polarazing filter (shouldn't have sold the old one, I suppose) today, so it's a new kit all at once. This should be fun!
An hour later, and the 17-70 is here. How odd: I have no body to try it on! Looks to be in great shape though, more compact than I remember.
Well OK - the k-x came into town too late - it reached me at 8:15AM Saturday. Wow, looks new to me - and oops, it came with a 4G chip inside! Guess I'll check with the seller about that..