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04-02-2011, 05:58 AM   #1
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Takumar 300 f4 DMV or modern da version?

Any thoughts on which of these makes more sense. Are these takumars any better? Is 90 well spent or go for the modern zoom, which is af, k mount, smaller. After one to capture red kites that fly over constantly.

Thanks for any thoughts!

04-02-2011, 07:18 AM   #2
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The DA is auto focus. That is important to some people, not to others. I have the M 300/4 which is a fine piece of glass as is my 200/4 Super Tak. The modern coatings on the DA lens will be less likely to produce CA which can be a problem when aiming at the treetops. The 300/4 Tak is a heavier lens, something else to consider. A split image focusing screen might be a good investment if you go with the manual focus lens. I'm not familiar with your money conversions but 300mm Taks are usually $200 and up in good condition. There are different versions through the years. The SMC Taks have the more modern coatings of the lot and usually cost a little more.
04-02-2011, 08:28 AM   #3
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Just to avoid confusion regroup comments about modern lens coatings producing less CA. This is untrue. Modern coatings reduce flare and improve contrast. CA is determined by lens design and special optical glass

While it is true the DA300 will have less CA it is due to glass and design not coatings
04-02-2011, 02:07 PM   #4
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Dmv?

..

04-05-2011, 04:15 AM   #5
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Sorry yeatzee, posted on my iphone and it must of replaced my intended SMC with DMV...post has nothing to do with the department of motor vehicles!

Have extended my search a little. Takumar 300 f4 I was looking at went for 132 ($212), which I thought was a little rich for it, when you factor in a modern zoom lens having AF etc. Have seen Sigma 70-300 F4 APO DG MACRO lens for a bit more. I could certainly live without AF etc, if I thought image quality would be significantly better. Seen a few Pentax FA 100-300mm lenses, though some images that I've seen here didn't look particularly stellar to me (no offence to anybody!). Would welcome any thoughts on the Sigma APO version above if anyone has one as it does seem a good balance of price/quality.
04-05-2011, 05:23 AM   #6
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I think that's a pretty good price for a Tak 300mm f4 in good condition and, if you're primarily interested in the 300mm fl, you should compare it to the DA*300mm f4 rather than zooms with 300mm at the long end. I haven't shot with that Tak but I'd bet it will out perform those zooms in terms of IQ.
04-05-2011, 06:00 AM   #7
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Good point (does the Takumar SMC 300 compare with the modern DA*300 at all?) - it is the 300mm end that I'm interested in really (for some wildlife shots), and I'd rather have 300mm at a superior IQ. I just can't afford the 1000!
04-05-2011, 06:12 AM   #8
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I've used lots of lenses in my life, and based on my findings I have a very simple rule: never buy old lenses above 200mm, regardless of the brand. And with that I mean the simple optical designs which do not have ED (Extra Dispersion) or APO (Apochromatic) glass (essentially the same). For me, non-ED lenses are useless because I want to use them for birding and in harsh conditions. Old lenses invariably will fail (show lots of CA) in those conditions, or require extensive PP to give pleasing results.

This is not to say that old lenses cannot give great pictures, but I've had so many bad tele pictures that I eventually gave up on longer old lenses. There's a reason that those seem cheap, and that's not because of the lack of AF.

To make a long story short: if you want serious results from long glass, then buy serious long glass. The DA* 300/4 is outstanding.

04-05-2011, 06:35 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Asahiflex Quote
To make a long story short: if you want serious results from long glass, then buy serious long glass.
Pretty much but serious glass is seriously expensive.

QuoteOriginally posted by Asahiflex Quote
The DA* 300/4 is outstanding.
Really the best value and the current generation of bodies (K-x K-r & K-5) make it even more so. Matches very well with Pentax TCs, too.
04-05-2011, 12:38 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Asahiflex Quote
I've used lots of lenses in my life, and based on my findings I have a very simple rule: never buy old lenses above 200mm, regardless of the brand. And with that I mean the simple optical designs which do not have ED (Extra Dispersion) or APO (Apochromatic) glass (essentially the same). For me, non-ED lenses are useless because I want to use them for birding and in harsh conditions. Old lenses invariably will fail (show lots of CA) in those conditions, or require extensive PP to give pleasing results.

This is not to say that old lenses cannot give great pictures, but I've had so many bad tele pictures that I eventually gave up on longer old lenses. There's a reason that those seem cheap, and that's not because of the lack of AF.

To make a long story short: if you want serious results from long glass, then buy serious long glass. The DA* 300/4 is outstanding.
Whats funny about this is how little CA or fringing my Takumar 300mm F/4 shows Vastly better in that regard than just about EVERY LENS I OWN

I have been nothing but pleased with the My takumar 300 (18 aperture blade version)



What I was lugging around at the wild animal park
by yeatzee (now 17, but still learning), on Flickr

if you want to see some of my initial images with the lens, click here:
Takumar 300mm F/4 (18 blade version) - a set on Flickr

all handheld

edit: I payed $220 for mine with an auto-takumar 55mm f/1.8 (also a neat lens) and it was worth every penny.
04-05-2011, 02:27 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by yeatzee Quote
Whats funny about this is how little CA or fringing my Takumar 300mm F/4 shows Vastly better in that regard than just about EVERY LENS I OWN

I have been nothing but pleased with the My takumar 300 (18 aperture blade version)



What I was lugging around at the wild animal park
by yeatzee (now 17, but still learning), on Flickr

if you want to see some of my initial images with the lens, click here:
Takumar 300mm F/4 (18 blade version) - a set on Flickr

all handheld

edit: I payed $220 for mine with an auto-takumar 55mm f/1.8 (also a neat lens) and it was worth every penny.
Thank you, I have enjoyed your great pictures! But like I said: the old lenses can give great pictures, but when the circumstances get more demanding... Strong backlighting, sunlit tree branches... The Takumar will not fare well in those circumstances.

I tried it also with my 200mm f/4 S-M-C Takumar:



You must admit that this shot with the older (but equipped with ED glass) SMC Pentax-F* 300mm f/4.5 looks much more pleasing with regards to CA/PF.



And this, in a nutshell, is why I eventually gave up on older tele lenses.

Thanks for sharing!
04-05-2011, 03:26 PM   #12
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I have previously posted several shots from my K300/4 and 1.7x AF TC. While a little more than a tak at about 350 current price it is a solid performer also. CA is more of a shooting situation issue than anything else
04-05-2011, 04:16 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Asahiflex Quote
Thank you, I have enjoyed your great pictures! But like I said: the old lenses can give great pictures, but when the circumstances get more demanding... Strong backlighting, sunlit tree branches... The Takumar will not fare well in those circumstances.

I tried it also with my 200mm f/4 S-M-C Takumar:



You must admit that this shot with the older (but equipped with ED glass) SMC Pentax-F* 300mm f/4.5 looks much more pleasing with regards to CA/PF.



And this, in a nutshell, is why I eventually gave up on older tele lenses.

Thanks for sharing!
But the thing is, I did take images at the park of birds in tree's with branches throughout, which would be a big purple blob with most lenses yet the Takumar worked wonderfully. It was amazing, truly Im not sure I have the images anymore as none were keepers, but I'll look later
04-05-2011, 06:12 PM   #14
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I just checked and sure enough I had deleted them. I guess your going to have to take my word for it until I can take the bad boy out again

edit: by the way, I'd love to see an un-edited version of the second shot! That lens interests me, and the shot seems like a great one to see whats what with
04-05-2011, 11:42 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by yeatzee Quote
I just checked and sure enough I had deleted them. I guess your going to have to take my word for it until I can take the bad boy out again

edit: by the way, I'd love to see an un-edited version of the second shot! That lens interests me, and the shot seems like a great one to see whats what with
Oh, I believe you

I forgot that I took the last shot on a Canon 5D with a small extension tube (so no problems with the diaphragm lever or flange of the F* 300/4.5). Anyway, I shot it in raw, here's the unedited fullsize version (just saved as JPEG, nothing else...) You'll notice I cropped the shot a lot, and that in itself is a good reason to have PERFECT glass.

http://www.mrcamera.nl/alg/housefinchf30045-01-fullsize.jpg
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