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11-03-2010, 01:47 AM   #1
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DA* 50-135mm versus Tamron 70-200mm

Guys
Ive been deliberating over my next lens purchase for far too long and im now ready to take the plunge...Im after a 2.8 zoom telephoto with very good IQ...Ive narrowed it down to either the Tamron 70-200 or the DA* 50-135.
Now im well aware of the different focal lengths that each lens has , im really keen to hear from anyone that has both in their lens bag...and which one do you most commonly reach for...do you find that the shorter reach of the 135 dimishes its attraction over the 200mm reach of the tamron...or do you feel that the DA better IQ gives it shorter reach more appeal , ...indeed does the DA have better IQ ????

Im taking shots of basketball and im on the touch line..so I feel that 135 will give enough reach..although at footy on a larger oval I know its a bit limited....Ive allready had a 28-125 Sigma. and that was a little short if the action was not right in front of you..also portrait , family pictures..

in a ideal world Id have both...trouble is I dont live in that world at present so I need a little help choosing

I can land both for around $850AU to my door..so cost being the same...which would you chose?

P.S

if anyone has a used one of either for $600 or so AU..give me a shout..as Im ready to hit buy in the checkout .

11-03-2010, 02:25 AM   #2
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good lenses Tommot1965,
i am also interested in these lenses, but unfortunately i havent yet

for basketball you may need a fast af.
there are crtitcs about 135 that its af is not as fast.
i dont know true or not, owners willl led you.
11-03-2010, 02:37 AM   #3
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I have the Tamron, and I just love it! Not into sports, so I can't say exactly if the Tamron is better for you than the DA, but as the DA covers less ground than your present Sigma, I'd wouldn't hesitate one sec to go for the Tamron!

SO, sorry, I'll keep mine!
11-03-2010, 02:43 AM   #4
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A couple of observations here.

If you already shot with a zoom that went to 125 and found it short unless the action is right in front of you you will have the same reaction to the 50-135, 10mm is not a big difference in magnification.

On that basis alone you should take the 70-200.

Also note that while heavier and bigger, the 70-200 will have other uses, and if you consider designing your kit around that focal length, then having a lens like the 28-75 as the next FL below it makes a good fit. You can take the 70-200 when you know you will use it and leave it at home when you know you will not.

if you design your kit around the 50-135, and then get eprhaps a 16-50 below it, you will always be taking the 50-135 with you, because there are times where you will want more than 50mm.

11-03-2010, 02:57 AM   #5
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It comes down to 50-70 vs 135 -200 and 700ish grams vs 1.3kg. IQ is a wash. I like 50-70 and lighter weight lenses so no surprise what I bought.
11-03-2010, 03:26 AM   #6
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I never thought about it in that way, but I like Lowell's observation about "building a kit". It does seem that most of the time I'm bringing the DA*50-135 along. The Tamron IQ is darn good, but I still feel the Pentax is slightly better. And it's certainly easier-handling, due to its size. Quick-shift feature on the Pentax is nice to have also. If shooting wide-open, I'd give the Pentax the edge.

I remember wishing I had the Tamron, for my son's swim meet. (The Tamron was in for warranty repair of the "sticky aperture" problem.) So I was "forced" to use the DA*50-135, but in the end I did not come away disappointed. The focal length was actually quite adequate, and in the few instances where I wished for a longer focal length, the excellent IQ allowed for cropping as an alternative.

For a swim meet, or your basketball scenario, IMO the 50-135 should suffice, but for something like a soccer game, the Tamron's extra reach becomes necessary. However, although I own both, 9 times out of 10 I'm using the 50-135. It's just a really great lens!
11-03-2010, 03:32 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
A couple of observations here.

If you already shot with a zoom that went to 125 and found it short unless the action is right in front of you you will have the same reaction to the 50-135, 10mm is not a big difference in magnification.

On that basis alone you should take the 70-200.

Also note that while heavier and bigger, the 70-200 will have other uses, and if you consider designing your kit around that focal length, then having a lens like the 28-75 as the next FL below it makes a good fit. You can take the 70-200 when you know you will use it and leave it at home when you know you will not.

if you design your kit around the 50-135, and then get eprhaps a 16-50 below it, you will always be taking the 50-135 with you, because there are times where you will want more than 50mm.
I take those two as a travel kit (good IQ, and WR to boot). I'd replace my 12-24 in a heartbeat if Pentax comes out with a DA*11-16. Then my UWA to moderate zoom kit would be truly complete.
11-03-2010, 03:37 AM   #8
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135 should be long enough for indoor sports
I have same dilemma, just different sports, in my case martial arts.
I worry about focus speed, so sigma hsm model come in equation.
One important thing is for me, pentax da* lens can keep price for used peace much better than third party lens, and 50-135 is internal focus not extending and WR lens so dust and humidity will not come in during the time, so if money is not problem 50-135 and if necessary da*200, is not big and dramatic difference from 135 to 200, to have for indoor sports and outdoor bad light shots.
That is just my opinion.

11-03-2010, 03:58 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
A couple of observations here.

If you already shot with a zoom that went to 125 and found it short unless the action is right in front of you you will have the same reaction to the 50-135, 10mm is not a big difference in magnification.

On that basis alone you should take the 70-200.

Also note that while heavier and bigger, the 70-200 will have other uses, and if you consider designing your kit around that focal length, then having a lens like the 28-75 as the next FL below it makes a good fit. You can take the 70-200 when you know you will use it and leave it at home when you know you will not.

if you design your kit around the 50-135, and then get eprhaps a 16-50 below it, you will always be taking the 50-135 with you, because there are times where you will want more than 50mm.
yep good points about the focal lengths and building a kit that covers what you need. i should have mentioned that I no longer have the sigma 28-125 as I found the IQ to be a little soft for me. so I went for a 16-45 Pentax......so the 50-135 would tack nicely along with that ...I also thought about perhaps a 1.4 teleconveter for the footy game scenario

although that will diminish the lens IQ and speed , but a f4 lens in that example would be fine and the 1.5 tele will push the 135 to 200mm, but would the sdm work with a teleconverter ?

I will also add that Im constantly at the 45mm end of the 16-45 and wondering if that lens is for me....should I get the 28-75 Tamron then the 70-200



Ive tested a 70-200 tamron...great lens...big manageable. but did hunt a few times for a focus lock in bright sunlight..ive took a look at a 50-135 in a shop..but have not taken any images with it .....as we alll know if money was no object..this thread would not exist

thanks for the replies guys..great stuff and thought provoking for me
11-03-2010, 04:23 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tommot1965 Quote
yep good points about the focal lengths and building a kit that covers what you need. i should have mentioned that I no longer have the sigma 28-125 as I found the IQ to be a little soft for me. so I went for a 16-45 Pentax......so the 50-135 would tack nicely along with that ...I also thought about perhaps a 1.4 teleconveter for the footy game scenario

although that will diminish the lens IQ and speed , but a f4 lens in that example would be fine and the 1.5 tele will push the 135 to 200mm, but would the sdm work with a teleconverter ?

I will also add that Im constantly at the 45mm end of the 16-45 and wondering if that lens is for me....should I get the 28-75 Tamron then the 70-200



Ive tested a 70-200 tamron...great lens...big manageable. but did hunt a few times for a focus lock in bright sunlight..ive took a look at a 50-135 in a shop..but have not taken any images with it .....as we alll know if money was no object..this thread would not exist

thanks for the replies guys..great stuff and thought provoking for me
The 50-135 is a great lens. One of my favorites. The two things that may frustrate you with it: slow focusing and not enough reach. It is a lens that seems to have been designed more with portraits in mind and the ability to manual focus. The focus throw is quite long and so it just takes awhile to lock focus. I don't know that the Tamron is a whole lot faster though. Sigma HSM 70-200 f2.8 would definitely be quite a bit zippier.

In my experience, I use the 50-70 range a lot more than I would use the 135-200 range. If necessary, I can crop a little bit, but I can only back up so far.

They are all good lenses.
11-03-2010, 06:34 AM   #11
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I think it matters what you use more 50-70 or 135-200.
Second thing to consider is size and weight.
IQ wise, I don't think there is concernable difference between those two ( I owned both in the past) but I liked the close focus ability of Tamron.
Good luck...
11-03-2010, 06:48 AM   #12
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All I can speak about is the 50-135. Though I think it a wonderful lens, if 125mm isn't enough for you, neither will 135mm. Unless you are after the f2.8 (I think you said you are), and need the range, and have the coin to spend, why not the DA*60-250?

11-03-2010, 06:54 AM   #13
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I own and use the 70-200

And I shoot a lot of outdoor soccer. All of it on a monopod. And at times I wish I had a bit more reach. Now we're moving indoors and I'm thinking of a shorter fast lens and I was thinking of the Sigma 50-150 2.8. I'm afraid the 135 wont be enough and was thinking I could handhold the 50-150.
11-03-2010, 06:59 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by JeffJS Quote
All I can speak about is the 50-135. Though I think it a wonderful lens, if 125mm isn't enough for you, neither will 135mm. Unless you are after the f2.8 (I think you said you are), and need the range, and have the coin to spend, why not the DA*60-250?
Another vote for considering the DA*60-250. Although a bit more expensive, it's got a fantastic range (almost as much width as the 50-135, with almost twice the length). Granted the other price you pay is f/4 vs f/2.8.

FWIW, I have both and haven't really used my 50-135 much since picking up the 60-250.
11-03-2010, 07:05 AM   #15
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Two months ago I was trying to make the same decision. If it wasn't for the dreaded SDM, I'd pick the DA* 50-135 because of the weather sealing. Having said that I have reservations about a sticky aperture. So I've decided not to pursue either of these two lenses and just make do with my cheap and trusty 50-200.
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