System evalution II: Pentax after two years

Browsing through my FlickR-Stream I realized, that my most viewed picture is the picture of my Pentax System. Hence, I though an update would be nice 🙂

Looking back at the system I had in January 2012, creates mixed feelings. One the one hand it was an extremely good setup with great primes. One the other hand, it was an huge investment, and this was the reason I sold my Limiteds – I had lost faith I had backed the right horse. So I bought an F50/1.7 as replacement for the FA43, used my old M24 instead of the DA21, bough a DA 16-45mm to replace the DA15 and did not care about the FA77, because I did not like the focal length anyway.

Not much later, in August 2012, I bought another Canon 5D and added a couple of lenses (EF35, EF50, EF85 and a Tamron 17-35mm). The FOV a 35 and 85 are my favorites and I could not pass that local offer. So I ended up with two systems. Over the time exchanged the 16-45mm with a Sigma 10-20mm. I used to own the latter before I bought the DA15, but I couldn’t handle the 10mm at that point in time.

Owning two systems was a hassle, and I was confronted with the decision to choose. This time I did not rush, I gave myself a lot of time for the decision. During that process I often reviewed my pictures, and especially with the shots from 2013 I was rather unhappy. In the end I think I was more concerned about the equipment than the picture. I still loved my Pentax, the handling is top-notch, I just can’t get along with the Canon. Moreover, the only reason I really wanted to go 24x36mm (aka Fullframe) was a fast 35. I rarely used it. Therefrom, I decided to stay with Pentax. They had a great year as a company, and the K3 is awesome. Ricoh is a strong partner which gives me the feeling of backing the right horse again.

But what about the quality of my pictures? Two aspects I needed to change: less options in terms of equipment and focus on the outcome. For the latter, my old PC was a big hurdle. From the money I received for the Canon equipment I bought a new one which makes post processing not a pain in the ass anymore so I have more fun taking care of my pictures. Regarding the lenses I am currently aiming for a 3-4 lens setup, consisting of the DA* lenses of Pentax (DA* 16-50mm, DA* 55mm, DA* 50-135mm and maybe the DA* 300mm), complemented by a super wide (Sigma 10-20mm) and a 135 F2 equivalent (Samyang 85mm). If I’ll need the F 100mm makro I don’t know yet. But I will spend more time on location scouting, hoping my shots will become better again 🙂 I still miss the DA15mm, depending on the financials I might get a copy nonetheless in the future 😀 However, a picture is not about a prime or zoom, sharpness from corner to corner etc. I have been down that road and know by now that it is only about realizing your creative capabilities. Wether I do that with a DA15 or with the Sigma at 15mm is not important.

Photography is a journey, and for each set of requirements everyone needs to find a compromise. For me, the best compromise out there is currently Pentax. Bear in mind that requirements can change, i.e. lightweight traveling is currently not a priority of mine. I wish everyone a great year 2014, awesome shots and limited GAS and LBA 😉