Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
12-11-2011, 10:36 PM   #1
Pentaxian
Wired's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Edmonton, AB
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,494
M 200 replacement

I have a love hate relationship with this lens. I love all my M series primes, but the M 200 is getting less and less work as a telephoto as of late. It seems to confuse the sensor on my K5 of whats in focus and what is not. Its great if the subject is nice and close. But at that point I might as well use my M 50 or M 135 as they are easier lenses to use for the similar situations. There has not been one event yet where the 200 could not have been replaced by the 135 or 50.

I'm thinking I might start saving up for one of a Sigma Macro 70-200mm to kill two birds with one stone as I'm also in desperate need of a Macro lens and was going to spill on a D FA WR 100mm Macro in the new year.

thoughts?

12-11-2011, 11:43 PM   #2
Veteran Member
icywarm's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Saskatchewan
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,276
well macros are one thing... but you are asking about short - med teles to start with.

I believe most/all macro lens are design to be best at their near focus and the close they get to infinity the less sharp they are... so using a macro 'tele' as a 'tele' may not give you the results you hope for... now saying that... most people pixel pep too much and likely the 70-200 will solve you needs AND be easier on the wallet vs having several lens...
12-12-2011, 07:40 AM   #3
Pentaxian




Join Date: Nov 2011
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,615
QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
I have a love hate relationship with this lens. I love all my M series primes, but the M 200 is getting less and less work as a telephoto as of late. It seems to confuse the sensor on my K5 of whats in focus and what is not. Its great if the subject is nice and close. But at that point I might as well use my M 50 or M 135 as they are easier lenses to use for the similar situations. There has not been one event yet where the 200 could not have been replaced by the 135 or 50.

thoughts?
If you need a long tele prime with sharpness across the APS-C frame,
it would be hard to do it lighter and smaller and cheaper than with the M200.

A Voigtlaender Apo-Lanthar 180/4 SL would be smaller,
but they're impossible to find (in my experience),
and the cost would be hard to justify if you don't need it that often.

I haven't had too much trouble focusing my M200 on a K-x at long range,
so I'm not sure what you mean about "confus[ing] the sensor" of the K5.
12-12-2011, 08:22 AM   #4
Loyal Site Supporter
pacerr's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Henry, TN
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,852
A while back I compared a basket full of 100-200mm lenses including everything from old SMC Super Taks, M's and A's to the new digital DA's. I came to one conclusion that the older moderate telephoto lenses seemed to be optically optimized for use at either near or far focus distances.

As just one example from the lenses I had at hand, a Vivitar 200/3.5 was "better" beyond 12-15 feet than a Super Tak 200/4, but the ST was more pleasing from MFD to moderate portrait distances. Contrast and ease of capturing focus was a part of my overall opinion as well as apparent sharpness.

The mechanical "feel" of a lens played a part in how "likeable" it was and tended to bias the results until lens identification was eliminated. This was particularly true for the older Pentax lenses with their deserved reputation for build and smooth focusing. The esthetics of handling these older lenses has been reason enough to keep 'em around and make that extra effort to use 'em to their best advantage.

While this was admittedly a purely subjective comparison, it seemed to hold true for nominally equivalent lenses at 90-105mm and 135-150mm as well. This seems quite logical to me considering the state of optical design at that time and appears to generally follow the reputation of this class of lenses over the years when brand loyalty is discounted.

H2

12-12-2011, 12:01 PM   #5
Pentaxian
Wired's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Edmonton, AB
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,494
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by lytrytyr Quote
If you need a long tele prime with sharpness across the APS-C frame,
it would be hard to do it lighter and smaller and cheaper than with the M200.

A Voigtlaender Apo-Lanthar 180/4 SL would be smaller,
but they're impossible to find (in my experience),
and the cost would be hard to justify if you don't need it that often.

I haven't had too much trouble focusing my M200 on a K-x at long range,
so I'm not sure what you mean about "confus[ing] the sensor" of the K5.
Does not need to be a prime. I love prime lenses, but I'm not set on them at all.

The 200 M 4.0 I have will trick the camera into thinking it has focus on, lets say a person, thats about 600-800 meters away. But when I bring it up on my computer or zoom in on my camera, without even pixel peeping, just viewing it as a fill on my monitor you can see there is no focus to be had at all. And when something is in focus, even on an F11, the focus is so soft its near useless.
12-12-2011, 12:21 PM   #6
Pentaxian
Lowell Goudge's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Toronto
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 15,314
I would like to see an example.

Note that things 600-800 meters away are a long way away, and camera shake, among other things can lead to focus confirmation on the wrong point.

You need to consider that even 600mm away (the shortest distance you mention) to fill the frame vertically takes a subject 72 meters high. ( this is like a 24 story building.

exactly what are you shooting , can you post some examples.
12-12-2011, 05:44 PM   #7
Pentaxian
Marc Sabatella's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Denver, CO
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 10,686
There's nothing a lens can do to cause what you are describing. That's just a simple matter of not focusing quite carefully enough. It's not enough to stop when the tiny viewfinder image looks in focus enough; you need to be aware of where the focus zone is and make sure it is squarely over your target.

That said, I too find the M200/4, while a fine lens, doesn't get much use, as it is just too big / heavy to be worth carrying around most of the time. The difference in FOV between than and the 135 isn't so great that I can't just crop and get just as good a shot most of the time. Something like a 70-200/2.8 might be nice occasionally, but no way am I going to lug something like that around unless absolutely necessary.
12-12-2011, 09:21 PM   #8
Veteran Member
sterretje's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Roodepoort, South Africa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,534
QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
I'm thinking I might start saving up for one of a Sigma Macro 70-200mm to kill two birds with one stone as I'm also in desperate need of a Macro lens and was going to spill on a D FA WR 100mm Macro in the new year.
If you need macro, you're better off with the kit lens (34% magnification, 1:3) than with the above Sigma (29% magnification, 1:3.5).

12-13-2011, 03:17 AM   #9
Pentaxian
hoanpham's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Strand
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,360
QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
The 200 M 4.0 I have will trick the camera into thinking it has focus on, lets say a person, thats about 600-800 meters away. But when I bring it up on my computer or zoom in on my camera, without even pixel peeping, just viewing it as a fill on my monitor you can see there is no focus to be had at all. And when something is in focus, even on an F11, the focus is so soft its near useless.
a person 600-800 meters away? on crop sensor? on 200/4 ?

I had 2 copy of M200/4 that perform perfectly and identical, razor sharp when step down 1 or 2 clicks. Your copy may not able to focus infinity.
However, a person 600-800 meters away will make the photos of 200/4 look like wide angle.
12-13-2011, 03:28 AM   #10
Ash
Community Manager
Loyal Site Supporter
Ash's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Toowoomba, Queensland
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 22,679
The M 200 is the smallest and lightest lens in its class, just like most other Pentax primes, but indeed there isn't much like it in AF.
The 70-200 variety is MUCH larger and heavier, plus they pail in their macro abilities compared to true macro lenses.
The DFA/FA 100 macros are just magnificent pieces of kit for macro work, but the 70-200s are very versatile, sharp and fast all the way through the focal range. Perhaps the 60-250 might be an idea if you want the 200+ mm reach and the versatility, but then you're investing in an SDM lens.
12-13-2011, 05:13 AM   #11
Veteran Member
sterretje's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Roodepoort, South Africa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,534
QuoteOriginally posted by hoanpham Quote
a person 600-800 meters away? on crop sensor? on 200/4 ?

I had 2 copy of M200/4 that perform perfectly and identical, razor sharp when step down 1 or 2 clicks. Your copy may not able to focus infinity.
However, a person 600-800 meters away will make the photos of 200/4 look like wide angle.
It indeed needs something 5000mm lens. With a 200mm lens it means that the person is about 4% of the frame

And that will be something like 50 pixels if Wired has a big monitor. Wired, still saying that you're not pixel peeping
12-13-2011, 07:04 AM   #12
Pentaxian
Lowell Goudge's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Toronto
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 15,314
I can't say I know the M200 well as I don't have one, so maybe an owner will comment on differences to the K200/4 or SMC Tak 200/4 as I own the WSMC Tak and the two are very similar.

I have no issue focusing the 200Tak or the lens I prefer more the Takumar Preset 200/3.5. Both of these have substantial focus throw, and focusing is quite simple.

Although I don't usually take shots at infinity, I have had no complaints on the occasions where I have done so.

One point to the OP, to zoom in and look at details from 600-800 meters away (i.e. infinity) requires magnification well beyond an 8x10 inch print, where the rule of thumb is intended in terms of final magnification and acceptable (not perfect) focus or shake.
12-18-2011, 01:17 AM   #13
Veteran Member




Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 381
Try and have a look at the book "photographing changing light" by Ken Scott....he uses a 200mm M series lens as one of his three lenses he carries. His pictures are pretty amazing with it. His others are a 1.5/50 M and 24mm Sigma.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
k-mount, lens, love, macro, pentax lens, slr lens
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
50-200mm Kit lens replacement suggestions? Travis Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 10 01-15-2011 11:04 AM
Looking for a DA 50-200mm Replacement GhoSStrider Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 8 09-23-2010 07:50 AM
K7's replacement- what, when, and who? lesmore49 Pentax News and Rumors 62 07-09-2010 08:17 AM
50-200 replacement - any recommendations ? simonkit Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 13 09-02-2007 08:23 AM
What is the best replacement.... Buddha Jones Pentax DSLR Discussion 11 04-03-2007 06:03 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:12 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top