02 November 2013

Farewell to the Forty.. and ??

I had not intended to let any Limited lenses get away... but that was before the DA16-45 began crowding them out.  I had unsuccessfully marketed the DA70 a couple of times - keeping the 70mm makes much more sense than the DA40 given the 16-45, and the 70mm is slightly faster and nearly as small.  This injection of camera funds helps alleviate my financial remorse over the Sigma 50-150 f/2.8 as well.  I had felt that the 70-150's arrival made the 70mm expendable, but the huge size/weight difference really doesn't make for a fair comparison of the two on 70mm images alone.

So yet again, the kit has shifted.  Maybe at some point a 100-135mm prime will go along with the 16-45 / 70 / ?? for hiking trips (the 50-200WR is great except at the edges, where the 50-150 bests it handily).  I have diopter attachment lenses for decent closeups, but of course a 100mm or 105mm macro would be even better - but after the K-5 has been serviced.  Perhaps I can find a manual lens to fill in for now.

Rumors swirl around a Pentax 20-40mm Limited zoom, which may be WR and/or have DA motor; that would be fun to own, but it definitely will not be a cheap lens!

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And hello 105...
The 50-150 tests are in, and results are clear on several levels - and the truth hurts.  Without doubt it's an amazing lens, sharp right to the edges below f/4, silent focus, plenty of good.  At the same time, that 750+ grams could be used to carry several other items.  One that has stood out as an ideal match is a 100mm± macro lens.  Yes, guilty as charged: I recently sold off a Cosina-made 100/3.5 but it had no focus limiter and focus was loud & crazy.  In this case a Sigma 105mm EX.DG finally came up at a good price, and here it comes now to complement my 16-45 and 70 Limited as a top-notch hiking trio.

This means the 50-150's purpose has lessened, as the less-edgy but far lighter DA50-200WR can reclaim its position as both good telephoto and foul-weather choice.  Yet that makes less sense when attached to a K-01, and my K-5 sits in the moving van awaiting both unpacking and servicing for a few age-related issues.

The easy answer is to trade the 50-150 for an updated K-5 so I'm ready for the wet season.  I'm more convinced now that the II-series has features I would really like, notably the improved AF and crisper screen.  So the Sigma is on the block for cash or a K-5II trade; if I am cashed out I shall await a good post-Thanksgiving fire sale.  As to the II versus IIs debate, I am satisfied that the IIs may be sharper overall but the color moiré is a risk (though a slight one) and my skills are more in play than the AA filter by a long shot.

Now for the silly part: I also have the K-01 on the block.  That's just silly, both because I really enjoy it and also because all of its boxes and manuals are packed for our move and wildly inaccessible!  I shall not be aggressive with the sale or lower the price, so we shall see where that leads.

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