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02-25-2011, 10:46 AM   #16
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Recently I was trying to decide between the 60-250 and the 300. It was flexibility vs longer range. From what I could gather the IQ from both was excellent. I was worried about being stuck at 300mm, so I got my 55-300mm kit lens out and walked around at 300mm. I found I could shoot a lot at that range. I ended up with the 300 and I'm actually finding it a fun lens to use. I don't have many pictures since I just bought it, and I'm a noob so the photos don't show the full capability of the lens, but here are a few: Pentax-DA * 300mm | A Photo a Day

Have you taken your 55-300 out and looked at a small bird at the top of a tree at 250mm and 300mm? I guess I decided the extra 50mm was worth it. I find I use every bit of 300mm for small birds, even when they're close. I often wish I had more so I just bought a TC. But maybe you're better at stalking than I am.

What I finally decided is there wasn't a one lens solution that would satisfy me. So I decided to go with reach first, the 300mm with a TC and see how that played out. My plan was to use that primarily wildlife, but as I said, I'm finding there's a lot more uses for the lens than wildlife. At some point I'll probably pick up the 60-250 or 50-135 for longer range flexibility. Currently I have the 18-135 so that should give me a good idea as to which zoom to upgrade to.

Good luck with your choice. Either way, I bet you'll be happy.

02-25-2011, 11:09 AM   #17
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Oh, you're going to hate me for this :-), but what about the Sigma 150-500 OS one that just came out for under $1000. for birding, looks like the cat's meow.

I have the DA-300 and the DA 50-135. I use the 50-135 a LOT, just yesterday in a driving snowstorm and got terrific pics. The DA-300 is a very fine lens, but i find the lack of a zoom to be a handicap many times. I've not had a problem focusing my DA-300, at night, i just use manual focus if needed.

I would think you would be very happy with the 60-250. Twice this week, i've been out in wet conditions, and that capability is very very handy. but if you are serious about birding, I'd look at that 150-500. Too heavy and bulky for me, but then birds aren't my thing.
02-25-2011, 11:15 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
dgaies - I'd really like to hear your opinion on the difference between the Tamron 70-200 and the P 60-250. I don't mind a two lense solution at all if I end up with better speed and IQ.

Thanks for the advice Kammerer. However the 50-135 isn't on the radar at all because I almost never use the 50-100 range (except for the Tamron 90 for macro) and if I go the two lense solution then the Sigma 70-200 HSM has much faster AF, is extremely sharp and has a more useful range (for sports and birds as well as general use).

The *300 & Sigma 70-200 plus the TCs I have ; Tamron x1.4 and AFA x1.7 (not sure if that would work with the Sigma - if not the equally as sharp Tamron 70-200/2.8 will do) would give me :-

70-200 / 2.8
300 / 4
98-280 / 3.9
420 / 5.2
119 - 340 / 4.8
510 / 6.8

Maybe I'm over-thinking this !
My concern with the 70-200mm is weight - around 1.4 kg. The 60-250mm weights about 1.05 kg without tripod mount, and this is as much as I'm willing to carry while hiking. And I do not feel the need for f2.8.

Now if Sigma or Pentax were making a 70-200 f4, that would be interesting. The Canon version is under 800g, much easier to carry.
02-25-2011, 11:17 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
Bert - thank you for all that research - worth a rep point !


02-25-2011, 01:28 PM - 1 Like   #20
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One more shot from today's pics, I've been struggling with lack of sun and have had trouble getting any depth of field. Today I just refused to go under f5.6 even though that limited me to 1/20 second most of the time.

So here's a chickadee at my bird feeder.



And here's a close to a 1 to 1 crop, for the pixel peepers.



Much as I'd love to have lens to compare it with....

Last edited by normhead; 02-25-2011 at 01:42 PM.
02-25-2011, 01:30 PM   #21
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And one more

02-25-2011, 01:48 PM   #22
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I really like the idea of the 60-250, I wish it didn't have pentax's SDM motor =(
02-25-2011, 08:26 PM   #23
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QuoteQuote:
I really like the idea of the 60-250, I wish it didn't have pentax's SDM motor =(
It's fast, it's quiet.. and if it fails, you still have a great manual focus lens.

02-25-2011, 10:38 PM   #24
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Kent - thank you for your comments. For me I'm not sure the extra 50mm of the *300 is a deciding factor. If the IQ and resolution is there then cropping shouldn't be a major issue. I like the flexibility of the 60-250 and feel that this may get more use than the 300. However I've been using a Tamron BB 500 recently and fond that on occasions even that is not long enough !

Phil - I've seen some shots from the 150-500 and TBH some of the shots look a little soft in comparison to the other lenses mentioned here. I'm still going to take a look at it hands on though. There are a lot of pros to the 60-250 ......

Norm - very impressive stuff there. Shot at 250mm but how far away was the Chickadee and have you cropped much ? 1:1 shows impressive detail. Though I wouldn't be happy at all paying ca. US$1,300 for a MF zoom !

Kammerer - I can see your issue with the weight for hiking. Although I walk around al day it's not really hiking (I could take the 55-300 along for that if necessary) so 1.4kg over 1kg shouldn't be a major issue for me.

Thanks for everyone's contributions - next week I'll go and try out the DA*300 / 60-250 / 150-500 / 50-500 & Sigma 70-200 in hand. I'm sure that will help me make a decision !
02-26-2011, 02:09 AM   #25
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If you can get hold of the Sigma 100-300mm F4, try it and you will be delighted.
02-26-2011, 03:44 AM   #26
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Thanks David. There was one here but it's gone now - I'll keep my eyes open for another one.

I've just been to this new electronics shop in downtown Shanghai to take a look at the lenses. They didn't have the Sigma 70-200 there but I was able to look at the larger Sigmas in CF mounts (too heavy and unwieldy for my intended use) and try the two Pentaxes on my K5.

BTW this shop had 43 DSLRs on display that you can handle and shoot (all with different lenses attached) of which 16 were Pentaxes (K5, Kr and Kx) - pretty good exposure right there, in fact I think there were even more Pentaxes than Canons. I really liked the D700 and also the D300s - they felt better in the hand than the 7D whose dials felt a little flimsy compared to the K5's. The D7000 felt awful as did the 60D, IMHO.

Anyway I'll put up some shots later but IMO the D*300 felt much nicer in the hand than the 60-250. I understand what a member on another forum meant when she said the Bigma was easier to hand-hold than the 60-250. I think it's the placement of the zoom ring, it could take some getting used too - that was it's only 'fault' though.

However I have to say I still loved the 60-250, the AF didn't feel slow and even in the shop at 6,400 ISO both the *300 and the 60-250 both locked focus quickly and surely without any drama. Both were easily hand-held.

The DA*300 was though, an undoubted step up, the AF was totally silent and a little faster than the 60-250. Shots were a little sharper too - tiny details clearly visible on small articles located on the other side of the shop (60 yds away - the shop is 5 floors of 3,000m2 per floor) ! It just called my name. Decision made. DA*300 it is. And the 60-250 goes to the top of my LBA list, instead of the Sigma 70-200, and can wait until the Summer to join it's brother
02-26-2011, 04:39 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
Thanks David. There was one here but it's gone now - I'll keep my eyes open for another one.

I've just been to this new electronics shop in downtown Shanghai to take a look at the lenses. They didn't have the Sigma 70-200 there but I was able to look at the larger Sigmas in CF mounts (too heavy and unwieldy for my intended use) and try the two Pentaxes on my K5.

BTW this shop had 43 DSLRs on display that you can handle and shoot (all with different lenses attached) of which 16 were Pentaxes (K5, Kr and Kx) - pretty good exposure right there, in fact I think there were even more Pentaxes than Canons. I really liked the D700 and also the D300s - they felt better in the hand than the 7D whose dials felt a little flimsy compared to the K5's. The D7000 felt awful as did the 60D, IMHO.

Anyway I'll put up some shots later but IMO the D*300 felt much nicer in the hand than the 60-250. I understand what a member on another forum meant when she said the Bigma was easier to hand-hold than the 60-250. I think it's the placement of the zoom ring, it could take some getting used too - that was it's only 'fault' though.

However I have to say I still loved the 60-250, the AF didn't feel slow and even in the shop at 6,400 ISO both the *300 and the 60-250 both locked focus quickly and surely without any drama. Both were easily hand-held.

The DA*300 was though, an undoubted step up, the AF was totally silent and a little faster than the 60-250. Shots were a little sharper too - tiny details clearly visible on small articles located on the other side of the shop (60 yds away - the shop is 5 floors of 3,000m2 per floor) ! It just called my name. Decision made. DA*300 it is. And the 60-250 goes to the top of my LBA list, instead of the Sigma 70-200, and can wait until the Summer to join it's brother
Hi....Sorry to OT here. I do get into Shanghai once in a long while. The last time I was there in July last year. I went to this mall where the entire complex sells photography stuff. There was only one or two shops at the ground floor selling Pentax. The building was old so I think that you were not referring to this place. The name of this place escapes me at the moment.

This new place sounds great...would be able to advise the name and address of this place. If I get into Shanghai the next time, I will surely make it a point to visit and pretend to be rich.
02-26-2011, 07:59 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ahren Quote
Hi....Sorry to OT here. I do get into Shanghai once in a long while. The last time I was there in July last year. I went to this mall where the entire complex sells photography stuff. There was only one or two shops at the ground floor selling Pentax. The building was old so I think that you were not referring to this place. The name of this place escapes me at the moment.

This new place sounds great...would be able to advise the name and address of this place. If I get into Shanghai the next time, I will surely make it a point to visit and pretend to be rich.
Hi Ahren. The place you are talking about is the Xingguang Photo Gear Mall, #288 Luban Rd / Xie Tu Rd - it is THE best place to buy photographic equipment in Shanghai - all the Pros use it.

The new place is called Media Markt and is Huai Hai Rd near Chongming Rd. It's huge but the prices are 10-15% above the Xingguang Photo Mall.
02-26-2011, 09:41 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
Hi Ahren. The place you are talking about is the Xingguang Photo Gear Mall, #288 Luban Rd / Xie Tu Rd - it is THE best place to buy photographic equipment in Shanghai - all the Pros use it.

The new place is called Media Markt and is Huai Hai Rd near Chongming Rd. It's huge but the prices are 10-15% above the Xingguang Photo Mall.
Thank You...Xingguang Photo Gear Mall. That is the place. Next time will take a look at Media Mart.
02-26-2011, 11:19 AM   #30
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QuoteQuote:
Norm - very impressive stuff there. Shot at 250mm but how far away was the Chickadee and have you cropped much
Hardly cropped at all. I can open my porch window and shoot at 3 feet away, almost as close as the lens gets. They don't seem to mind as long as the window frame is between me and them, I was thinkning I shold take a few shots with my Sigma 70-300 at approx 250mm for comparison. But, I've lost my sun. Darn weather.
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