Zoom recommendation for safari

Started Mar 13, 2019 | Questions thread
PentUp Contributing Member • Posts: 531
Re: Zoom recommendation for safari

miles green wrote:

Horatiu Mihalache wrote:


In the summer I will go for a safari trip to Malawi, Zambia & Botswana (my first).

I have no experience whatsoever with safari photography nor with long lenses. I rarely use my 70mm on my K-3ii and almost never go beyond that.

I would like to take some nice pictures but they will be just memories - no printing or selling.

I was looking at Sigma 50-500 (both versions) but they seem very hard to find, even used, and I don't know if I will really need all that reach.

What sort of focal lengths it's more likely that I will need? And, if I am not asking too much, what lenses would you recommend?


I have been VERY impressed by the DFA 150-450 on the K1ii. Optics, build quality, AF speed and accuracy... all excellent. Where is the * this lens deserves!? Those who have used both say it runs circles around the Sigma 50-500. (OK, it should, one's a 3x zoom, the other is 10x)

It's heavy, you should pactice handling with any such lens if you're not used to it.

Is it too long on the short end? I don't know, but if you have a second camera for the wide shots, you'll definitely be very happy.

Is the DFA 150-450 too long at the wide end for Zambia? Yes it is.

There are times where you will want to get shots of elephants, lions merely meters away from your vehicle. 140mm is no where near wide enough.

I'm sure that the Pentax is optically better than the Sigma, but is just not a practical lens for the terrain and conditions of Zambia. Having two cameras is a solution, but just adds to weight where there are strict carry on luggage restrictions for light aircraft (especially given the weight of the DFA 150-450 already).

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