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08-01-2010, 06:03 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Every complex product ever made has *someone* in the world *somewhere* who has had an issue with it. The Internet makes it easy to scare oneself with others' reports, but you should really keep things in perspective. There are far more happy than unhappy owners of all the aforementioned lenses.
It's all about statistics, unfortunately
"Do you feel lucky?"

Most important these days is the quality and reliability of the service you can get for your item - if any, worth that name.

08-01-2010, 06:30 AM   #17
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I wish somebody would make a top quality 200mm pancake that weighs 300 grams or less.
08-01-2010, 12:52 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
There's more to lens quality than just 'one-stop difference' between lenses though RioRico - I assume you took that into consideration.
Indeed. Faster, more expensive lenses are often (but not always) built to higher standards. Does that mean a noticable difference when stopped down? When an image is printed? It's said around here that pros don't shoot wide open, not when their paymasters want sharpness. So I asked: What is the value?

QuoteQuote:
Plus the added speed (f/2.8 or f/4 vs f/5.6) can make the difference between handholding/freezing motion and not.
Indeed. Boosting ISO a bit does that too. So does careful planning, positioning, lighting, etc. How about a comparison at 200mm? I know I'll get my sharpest shots with my little M42 Tele-Takumar 200/5.6 (410g, US$29) but that's slow, so forget it. Instead I'll drag out my big Vivitar Series 1 Version 1 70-210/3.5 (880g, US$32) and compare it with a Sigma 70-200/2.8, either the APO EX version (1270g, US$845) or the II EX DG APO Macro HSM AF (1370g, US$775). Sorry, I just have a hard time justifying hundreds of bucks more for 1/2 stop gain + AF.

QuoteOriginally posted by JHD Quote
I wish somebody would make a top quality 200mm pancake that weighs 300 grams or less.
I can hear the reindeer on my roof already...
08-01-2010, 01:36 PM   #19
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You can buy the 50-135 with 4 years warranty; here in france is costs only 30 extra euros; this mean that there is not so many issues anyway with the SDM

08-01-2010, 09:04 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bart Quote
It's all about statistics, unfortunately
True, but that's the one thing the Internet *doesn't* help with. You get isolated anecdotal evidence, but no way to get a controlled sample set, or even know the size of uncontrolled sample set you are getting.
08-01-2010, 10:46 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
Faster, more expensive lenses are often (but not always) built to higher standards. Does that mean a noticable difference when stopped down? When an image is printed? It's said around here that pros don't shoot wide open, not when their paymasters want sharpness. So I asked: What is the value?
Aspects that are hard to quantify but are quite evident in the best of lenses: microcontrast, colour rendition,3D effect and the like.

QuoteQuote:
Indeed. Boosting ISO a bit does that too. So does careful planning, positioning, lighting, etc. How about a comparison at 200mm? I know I'll get my sharpest shots with my little M42 Tele-Takumar 200/5.6 (410g, US$29) but that's slow, so forget it. Instead I'll drag out my big Vivitar Series 1 Version 1 70-210/3.5 (880g, US$32) and compare it with a Sigma 70-200/2.8, either the APO EX version (1270g, US$845) or the II EX DG APO Macro HSM AF (1370g, US$775). Sorry, I just have a hard time justifying hundreds of bucks more for 1/2 stop gain + AF.
I have no doubt those MF lenses produce brilliant results - when conditions are right and time is not a critical factor. Few people can justify such big ticket purchases for lenses that apparently have minimal benefit in light-gathering ability and focusing, but it is for those few people to know why those lenses are useful.

My own case is simple: the DA 55-300 I have is just superb - beautiful colours, contrast and rendition. It's even one of those lenses that stays at f/4.5 around the 200mm mark, and is AF! But it simply wouldn't do for the indoor concerts and conferences I've captured - all perhaps because I was limited to what ISO I could set on my K20D.

Perhaps if I invested in a K-x rather than a Tamron 70-200, the DA 55-300 could have sufficed, but there is just something else about the results I get with the 70-200 that the 55-300 doesn't seem to compare with. It would make life even harder trying to capture concerts with a 200mm f/5.6 MF lens...
08-01-2010, 10:51 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
True, but that's the one thing the Internet *doesn't* help with. You get isolated anecdotal evidence, but no way to get a controlled sample set, or even know the size of uncontrolled sample set you are getting.
More than that, the internet is great for reporting absolute numbers of user-identified 'problem' gear, and appalling for reporting relative numbers of actual problem gear, which is a far superior statistic to gauge the extent of the gear's problem.
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