I’m looking to buy my first lens beyond the kit 18-55mm for my Pentax K-x. As a student my budget limits me to around a sub $300 offering. I am new to photography, and so I have a hard time answering the typical ‘what kind of photography do you like to do?’ question.
I am open to exploring a range of photographic genres so all lens categories are on the table, but most of all I don’t want buy something that I will regret later for reasons of quality. I realize this is subjective, especially in my price range, so a valid answer may be to wait until I can afford better. I don’t know.
The options I have been looking at are:
Tamron AF 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 - This lens obviously duplicates the range covered by my kit lens, but also gives me an all-in-one telephoto option for quickly capturing a range of different images.
That the quality is not great overall, as this lens is by definition a compromise, and a cheap one at that.
That I am duplicating a focal range I already cover, possibly with worse image quality; I don’t know.
That I am underutilizing my DSLR by treating it like a superzoom point-and-shoot with maybe very little quality difference from a lens in this price range.
Rokinon FE8M-P 8mm F3.5 Fisheye - With this choice I would be moving away from the focal range I have access to now, and picking up an interesting lens option at the same time. It also has the advantage of being something I am not likely to replace with a more expensive, higher quality, version when I go to buy my next lens.
That this lens is too far out there in terms of its oddity and specialization for me to be getting into at this point, and that I would be better off learning on something more conventional.
I have no idea where this type of lens is best utilized.
The new Pentax DA 35mm 1:2.4 prime - As the fastest of the lenses I am looking at, this one seems like the one I would be least likely to outgrow. It does share a part of the kit lenses' focal range, but it is so much faster that I think it hardly compares.
I have never used a prime lens, or even a point-and-shoot without a good deal of zoom capacity. I don’t know what I would think of that.
f2.4 isn’t that fast by objective standards. This goes back to the “should I just wait?” question.
Something in the 70-300mm range - This avoids the issue of redundant lenses, and would probably offer better image quality than an 18-200mm.
- This would limit my photographic options to taking pictures of things very far way, using a tripod. Something I have never done before, so I don’t know how much I would like it.
Other Options - It is entirely possible I overlooked some lens type or other. If it's not in the list, that's probably because I don't know about/forgot about it, not that I'm not interested.