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03-15-2011, 04:20 AM   #1
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Tamron SP 60-300 + 2X TC.. Any experiences?

I'm looking at maybe picking up a Tamron SP 60-300mm along with the 2x teleconverter for shooting birds & wildlife. Can't afford $800 for the mini-Bigma right now, but I would like decent quality.

Is the Tamron BBAR the best teleconverter for this purpose, or is there a better choice? Anyone else gotten decent results with a long lens on a TC?

Cheers,
Bobbo :-)

03-15-2011, 04:34 AM   #2
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This lens was decent back in the film days but not particular fast and rather long & heavy w/o collar. I think it is good by itself but would be impractical with 2X TC.
03-15-2011, 04:37 AM   #3
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I've had good success with SP 60-300 and the SMC-1.7x TC.
However, it was not very good with a Vivitar 2x TC on the other hand.
Also, though the SP 60-300 is an above average performer, I think it's worth mentioning that it seems to perform best at/or around the 250mm range rather than at full extension. Which seems to exhibit more CA and softness than the former.

Other than that the 60-300 is a pretty decent lens if you can afford to stop it down.
I usually keep mine in the f/8 region with a TC attached to help keep CA in check.

FTR, here are a few samples I've dug-up for review(most at full extension - 510mm). Though I'd like to point out that many were shot on a K20D at high ISO(32/6400) and so there would be detail loss due to that as well.

CROPPED










...hope this helps

PS. I almost forgot... this is how I use the SP 60-300:

Last edited by JohnBee; 03-15-2011 at 04:44 AM.
03-15-2011, 05:16 AM   #4
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Hi, John.

Thanks for the input. Where'd you get the tripod collar?

For long shots with a TC, do you think I'd be better off with the Tamron, or the Pentax 55-300 DA-L?

03-15-2011, 05:52 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by GibbyTheMole Quote
Hi, John.

Thanks for the input. Where'd you get the tripod collar?

For long shots with a TC, do you think I'd be better off with the Tamron, or the Pentax 55-300 DA-L?
The collar is nothing but a generic from eBay(14 USD).
I measures the outer ID on the lens and ordered the nearest model I could find.
Then I added some plastic shims to adjust for a tight fit(did the trick).

On the issue of the 55-300, I'd say it would win hands down with respect to CA.
However on the matter of OOF rendering(bokeh) I'd say the Tamron wins hand down. As for resolution, the jury's out insofar as I am aware of. And though I find the SP to be quite a performer, I'm really not sure how it measures against the 55-300. Sounds like a great test though
03-15-2011, 02:50 PM   #6
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My mind is blanking...someone on here or on the net had a small test between the 60-300 and the 300/5.6 (SP Adaptall-2). Maybe someone else remembers...I can't even find it in a search.

Well in any case, the prime was better than the zoom from f/5.6-8...so taking into consideration that with the 2x TC you'll be shooting f/11-16 at the minimum, I'd put down the extra $50 for the 300/5.6. The 01B is a pretty good TC, though be prepared for more fringing. I get plenty when trying to use the 90 macro as a tele...so I don't do that anymore
03-15-2011, 03:03 PM   #7
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Hey Ryan.

Well, I figured since I didn't spend a bundle on it, I could try it for wildlife shots, etc. & see if I like it. If it doesn't work out for me, I can always sell it.

Ideally, I'd love to have something like the 170-500 Sigma, but I can't afford that kinda bread at the moment. Maybe someday...

Cheers,
Bobbo :-)
03-15-2011, 03:40 PM   #8
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That's what it's about

If nothing else, you'll get some very usable pictures, improve your technique (blue jays are almost fearless with whole peanuts on the ground), and get a hang of super-shallow depth of field at telephoto lengths. Then you can decide to spend the big bucks...or maybe not

03-15-2011, 04:03 PM   #9
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Or . . .

. . . a hard drive full'a brick walls is the key to indecision. As shown above, it can be satisfying -- or not.

H2
03-15-2011, 04:20 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by ryan s Quote
My mind is blanking...someone on here or on the net had a small test between the 60-300 and the 300/5.6 (SP Adaptall-2). Maybe someone else remembers...I can't even find it in a search.
I haven't seen that and would like to.

In my experience so far, the 300/5.6 was giving more PF than the 60-300 - I was actually surprised how nice the results from the 60-300 were. But it does focus closer.

QuoteOriginally posted by GibbyTheMole Quote
I'm looking at maybe picking up a Tamron SP 60-300mm along with the 2x teleconverter for shooting birds & wildlife.
As for use with TC, like John said earlier, the main problem would be dealing with a really slow aperture and exacerbation of PF effects.

Here are some sample shots:

60-300@300
300 - some PF on tail, but better magnification

80-200@200+2xTC - this is a crop from a 400 combo @ f/8 and PF becomes a problem. The other lenses would give you f/11 and longer FL. Even a 1.4xTC would give you an f/8 aperture and that if using the lens wide open. Doesn't make much sense to me to use TCs with lenses slower than f/2.8.

If you want a longer FL and decent aperture, I recommend getting a good mirror lens - it will beat any TC combo that involves a slow zoom/prime lens. A 500/8 mirror is longer and less expensive than any 200/2.8+2xTC you can get. No contest.
03-16-2011, 12:02 AM   #11
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This lens is incredible IMO. Over at MF Forums there is a good deal of literature on it if you want to search, complete with a comparison to the 300 f 5.6. I find the lens very sharp, even @ 300mm. If careful, you can shoot it wide open, but must be selective with use to avoid PF. The lens is clearly best @ f 8, which is where I mostly work it, handheld--no problem. No crop--f8--1/13th--iso 200--spot metered--center focus

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