Other Lenses?

I’m currently trying to determine what lenses I would like to use with the Pentax KP as I adopt it for a minimalist style of photography.  I would like to minimize the weight and keep the cost down, but I’m not yet sure what focal lengths I want to utilize for my photography.  In the past I have always had long focal length zoom lenses and now I’m trying to see if I can develop a style without them.  The question I’m striving to answer is whether my 20-40mm and my 70mm lenses are enough, or at least the right focal lengths?  If I just use those lenses it will mean very little, if any, wildlife images, but I want to do photography without a heavy larger zoom lens.  I have thought about getting the Pentax 15mm and the 35mm macro lenses and primarily using one of them rather than the larger 20-40mm lens, but I’ll wait and see what I can do without them.  If I got another one of the prime lenses, the 20-40mm lens would be my WR option when needed. 

My intention is to photograph with one camera and one lens at a time.  I rarely take additional lenses when I’m out walking.  Using my KP camera is like having an X100 series camera but with the ability to use different focal lengths, plus a better, changeable hand grip.  I prefer the feel, ergonomics, and controls of the heavier Pentax KP when using it with one of the limited lens series.

Pentax KP 70mm Lens IQ

Sorry for the compositions but I was at my computer and wanted to continue my checkout of the Pentax 70mm Limited Lens.  I made these images quickly, thanks to the Pentax gear.  I captured raw files and then uploaded them into LR to resize and make jpeg images for my blog.  I made no adjustments or tweaks to the files.  These are Pentax images rendered by Adobe LR without any input from me.  I really like the image quality of this system.  I am use to manipulating my raw files generated from my previous Fujifilm and Olympus cameras and lenses but I’m now enjoying these more.

In the past I have been raising shadows and decreasing highlights, adding clarity, etc. and “fixing” all of my images in one way or another.  With my Pentax gear I will probably only be doing this with my B&W images if I end up primarily using Pentax limited lenses.

I have still not decided what I’m going to use/do for my Homewood photography.  While I like these “raw images” made with my Pentax gear for use on my blog and digital display, they may not print as well in Homewood publications, and they would definitely look different from what they have been using.  Those print differences as well as the sounds made by my Pentax gear may limit my use of my Pentax gear when producing images for Homewood uses.  In addition I don’t have the needed range of focal lengths for my KP camera for some Homewood events, so I’m holding onto my micro 4/3 gear for the time being.  I am also still weighing the advantages and disadvantages of the heavier Pentax gear with better image quality vice the lighter, lower quality micro 4/3 gear.

Pentax Crop-ability

Before I decide whether to switch back to Pentax gear I need to decide on what focal lengths I would likely want and see if Pentax has the lenses I want.  Since 40mm is the longest focal length I have at the moment, I took a picture of the trees on the horizon with that limited 20-40mm lens.  Note the trees in the center of the first picture that are furthest away.  The second picture is a crop from that center portion of the first picture that I then up-sized to make the version you are looking at.  See the birds in the trees?  Now I have an idea of how much zoom-cropping I can do.

I made this check as I was trying to decide whether to get a zoom lens or the 70mm limited prime lens.  Based on this check and some ideas of what I might be photographing, I decided to try the 70mm prime lens.  My thinking is that I might do some of my walkabout and Homewood photography with the 70mm lens and the camera-lens combination wouldn’t be too heavy.

Higher ISO with Pentax


Over the years I have used many cameras.  Early on, after I got more serious with my photography I switched to DSLR Pentax cameras.  After going through many different upgrades, I later sold my latest DSLR Pentax camera when I thought that I needed to find something smaller and lighter.  Now I am finding that my thinking is swinging back based on quality of the gear and the images.

While seeing if I still preferred the Pentax DSLR cameras and if I could manage them, I used a Pentax KP camera with the 20-40mm limited lens to make the test images above, all of them made at ISO 12800.  The images you see are from raw files made with Adobe colors in LR.  I did not use auto tone or make any changes except for applying a little noise reduction (+25).  What I am finding is that I like working with the Pentax files and they bring back many happy memories.

I now find myself thinking about selling all of my micro 4/3 gear that you see in the first image and switching back to using the larger heavier Pentax camera and lenses.  Since I am not anxious to make a mistake in going back, I might go back to a dual system with over lapping cameras and lenses for a while.  If I decide to do that, I’m not sure about what lenses I would get for a Pentax system.  I only know I need to keep the cost and weight of the lenses to a minimum.  Should I stick with a few limited lenses or get a longer zoom lens? 

I am amazed at the quality of the high ISO files.  I have no problems with them for the types of photography that I do.  I also prefer the Pentax program curve and the way I can control it for maintaining the qualities I need for my Homewood photography.