03 August 2011

welcome back my friends..

I admit it - despite two failed attempts to really like the Pentax 55-300 zoom, I was hunting again. I owned both DA and DAL versions at one point with my K-7. The DAL went a-swapping for a weather-sealed 50-200, and the DA left during the budget crisis that ultimately cost me the K-7 as well. Now I've retrenched with the k-x and find that the better high-ISO performance allows this long zoom to have a better chance to yield blur-free images.
I didn't need this lens badly, so I let a few deals slip away, primarily on the DAL (optically identical but with a few less bonus features). But at last I stumbled into an offer I dared not refuse - so a 'like new' DAL is on its way, and the Sigma 100-300 will move on to cheer up someone else. The 100-300 is a better lens than I had expected, but pulling back to 55mm is a great feature - and f/5.8 beats 6.7 for those hi-zoom lo-light images I persistently try to capture. At least I now have iso5000 available in a pinch!

I find it ironic that my two original favorite lenses are back in the stable. The DA16-45 really caught my eye when I migrated from Alpha gear, and teaming it with the 55-300 and a 50 prime seemed perfect. The K-7 led me in other directions (mostly weather-sealed ones) but the k-x has turned me around. Thankfully the wheeling and dealing was a draw financially, so I'm happy to be back with this pair.

02 August 2011

another Rikenon joins the kit

When I saw this at auction, I drew a blank. I knew nothing about the lens, so I did some research. A 70-150 should do well given its short zoom range, the XR line is well thought of, and it's reasonably small at 450g and using 52mm filters. OK then: why not submit a few bucks over the minimum and watch? Well, that was enough.

And its performance is disappointing - in that it makes me wonder why I own so many other lenses!

This is one talented and fun lens. It's also a bit of a pioneer with its separate zoom and focus rings despite being made in the 1-touch era, and more impressive it has an internal zoom mechanism - only focusing causes this lens to change size. It has a sorta-macro mode, less than 1:5 closeup but still handy. I've had a difficult time wrestling it off my k-x, it's that much fun and the images are that good.

Here's the image folder in Picasa: enjoy! I know I enjoyed making them.