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04-17-2012, 08:45 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by newarts Quote
I see the Power Zoom lenses will only work with a few high-end pentax bodies
The power zoom lenses will work with any Pentax DSLR (although the power zoom feature only works to the full extent with specific bodies). The point is that the power zoom 100-300 (along with the F version that replaced it) feature a different (and allegedly not as good) optical design than the FA 100-300 f4.7-5.8.

QuoteOriginally posted by geekette Quote
Also, I was just wondering if anyone had ever compared this 55-300 with Nikon's 55-300. Which has better image quality?
Popular Photography compared them and claimed that they were nearly identical in performance but that the DA 55-300 was slightly better at 300mm.

04-17-2012, 08:51 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by northcoastgreg Quote
The power zoom lenses will work with any Pentax DSLR (although the power zoom feature only works to the full extent with specific bodies). The point is that the power zoom 100-300 (along with the F version that replaced it) feature a different (and allegedly not as good) optical design than the FA 100-300 f4.7-5.8.
How does the Power Zoom lens fail on some cameras? K-x in particular.

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04-17-2012, 12:46 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by newarts Quote
How does the Power Zoom lens fail on some cameras? K-x in particular.
I've never owned any of the power zoom lenses, but my understanding is that some of the power zoom features will work with the K-x, and some of them won't. Last year I met a pro photographer at Maroon Bells who showed me how the power zoom feature works with a K20D. Basically, it just helps you zoom the lens: you begin zooming the lens and the power zoom takes over. On some film cameras you can get the zoom to move while you are taking a photo, but I don't think that specific "feature" works with any of Pentax's digital cameras.
04-17-2012, 01:15 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by northcoastgreg Quote
I've never owned any of the power zoom lenses, but my understanding is that some of the power zoom features will work with the K-x, and some of them won't. Last year I met a pro photographer at Maroon Bells who showed me how the power zoom feature works with a K20D. Basically, it just helps you zoom the lens: you begin zooming the lens and the power zoom takes over. On some film cameras you can get the zoom to move while you are taking a photo, but I don't think that specific "feature" works with any of Pentax's digital cameras.
Thanks. That makes sense.

04-17-2012, 02:49 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by northcoastgreg Quote
On some film cameras you can get the zoom to move while you are taking a photo, but I don't think that specific "feature" works with any of Pentax's digital cameras.
Hmmm, I have just one PZ, the FA28-80 that @dgaies gave me. At the moment it's at my home base 1000mi / 1600km away. I'll have to try the zoom-while-shooting trick on my K20D and ZX-M when I get back in a couple weeks. IMHO the PZ feature is normally only useful if one wants to go to extremes of the focal range. It doesn't quite have the delicate control of a manual zoom. Am I picky?
04-28-2012, 02:53 AM   #21
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What zoom lenses are a step up from the DA 55-300? What is the best telephoto zoom lens I could get for a pentax?
04-28-2012, 03:03 AM   #22
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The DA*60-250 is, by all accounts, awesome.
I have a SIgma 70-200/2.8 and the DA*300 to cover the range, but still use my DA55-300 if I'm travelling light.
04-28-2012, 09:09 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by geekette Quote
What zoom lenses are a step up from the DA 55-300? What is the best telephoto zoom lens I could get for a pentax?
QuoteQuote:
The best would arguably be the DA*60-250 f/4 but in your price range the DA 55-300 is the best you can do. DA L version is less expensive if you can do without quick shift. But it does not come with a hood which you will need, so add a bit to get that too.
Already answered......


DA*60-250 $1,639
DA 55-300 $439
DA L 55-300 $238

Amazon prices as of today.

DA*60-250 weighs 1120 grams
DA 55-300 weighs 440 grams

You said you had a budget of $600 so your only answer is the DA 55-300.

04-28-2012, 09:32 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by geekette Quote
Do I sell my k-x and all the old manual glass and get a d7000 with its lovely autofocus fast 50 (for $130) along with its 55-300 .. or keep the k-x and go with the pentax 55-300 and pentax-f 50 1.7.
Sorry, couldn't ignore..
Pentax' answer to that fast 50 will be out soon, though likely not for $130. Speaking for myself I'm happily set with my kit of 18-55wr, 50/2.8 Sigma macro and 55-300 (plus numerous m-focus lenses). But if Nikon has other reasons that appeal to you,that should be worked out (or out of your system ) before you buy more Pentax gear.
04-29-2012, 02:41 PM   #25
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Jatrax, well I might be increasing my budget
04-29-2012, 07:25 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by geekette Quote
Jatrax, well I might be increasing my budget
OK, fair enough.
04-29-2012, 07:43 PM - 1 Like   #27
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My preferences are based as much on grams as on cash, and nothing really beats the 55-300 without almost doubling* the weight. The 3rd-party 70-200 f/2.8s are well thought of as are the DA* - but if I buy an excellent but 'heavy' lens I know I will make excuses to leave it home and it accomplishes nothing. Weight may carry less weight with you in choosing a lens, but that would be another factor to consider.

Edit - after further review, make that tripling the weight Tamron's 70-200/2.8 is 1150g, the Sigma and DA* weigh more.

Last edited by jimr-pdx; 04-29-2012 at 07:50 PM.
04-30-2012, 06:33 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by jimr-pdx Quote
My preferences are based as much on grams as on cash, and nothing really beats the 55-300 without almost doubling* the weight. The 3rd-party 70-200 f/2.8s are well thought of as are the DA* - but if I buy an excellent but 'heavy' lens I know I will make excuses to leave it home and it accomplishes nothing. Weight may carry less weight with you in choosing a lens, but that would be another factor to consider.

Edit - after further review, make that tripling the weight Tamron's 70-200/2.8 is 1150g, the Sigma and DA* weigh more.
I love such thoughtful, helpful comments! Especially when they make quantitative statements like "tripling" rather than "heavier".

This forum is the best.
04-30-2012, 10:10 AM   #29
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I'd also put in a recommendation for the Pentax SMC F 70-210 f/4-5.6
The Pentax-made F series, SMC-coated version is quite a lovely lens.
Only complaint I have is that the aperture isn't that big, but then if you want f/2.8, you would exceed your budget

This lens can be bought used for less than $100, if you are patient enough.

However, if you decide to buy this one, be careful to avoid confusion and buy the right one, because there are a few lookalikes out there:
-There is a non-SMC version of the exact same lens (which looks exactly like the SMC coated one except without the SMC lettering).
-There is also a 70-200 version of the lens
-There is a Quantaray-branded 70-210 lens that looks similar
- There is also an FA series 70-200

All of the above do not perform as well as the SMC F 70-210.
04-30-2012, 03:22 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by geekette Quote
Jatrax, well I might be increasing my budget
Unless you also plan on tripling the amount of size and weight you are willing to deal with, you might consider asking yoruself why you believe the 55-300 would not be sufficient for you - after it, it is considered one of the very best in its class.
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