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07-27-2012, 11:56 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by magkelly Quote
Wait a sec. Are you guys saying that Tamron makes better 300 zoom lenses than Pentax does? I always thought the Pentax 55-300 was a definitely a step up not a step down? I've got a Sigma 75-300 and a Tamron 75-300. I think they are okay to pretty good depending but I was really hoping the Pentax was a lot better actually.
I may have missed something someone else said, but I think most people are talking about the Tamron 70-200 2.8.

07-28-2012, 04:20 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by magkelly Quote
Wait a sec. Are you guys saying that Tamron makes better 300 zoom lenses than Pentax does? I always thought the Pentax 55-300 was a definitely a step up not a step down? I've got a Sigma 75-300 and a Tamron 75-300. I think they are okay to pretty good depending but I was really hoping the Pentax was a lot better actually.
We're not talking about the Tamron 70-300 with an f range of 4-5.6. We're talking about the Tamron 70-200 with a constant f of 2.8 - much bigger, heavier, and more expensive lens.
07-28-2012, 07:24 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Remember, it isn't just weight but size.

Also, note that except in very large rooms, a 70-200mm lens is serious overkill. The 50-135mm is usually a smarter choice all around, and even then, only for the shots that require telephoto. Most event shots are probably much wider than that.
I have thought about that part about the room(s)...but honestly the lens will more than likely be used outdoors. I don't see myself attending a lot of weddings and stuff (unless its my own) but I need to meet a girl first

There might be a stray event here or there...but it might be a festival or something like that. The reason for me wanting the Tamron is 1. I heard its sharper (i like sharp) and the constant 2.8. I have the tamron 17-50 and I am very pleased with that for the most part.

Ideally if money were no object I would have two K-5 bodies with different zooms on them. One on my left and one on my right. That way I am not out there swapping around lenses (which is part of which puts me off about primes).

I don't know if any professionals shoot zooms, but I guess it doesn't matter since I do my own thing.

I have described how I would use zooms in a real life scenario and why, but I would like to hear real world use of primes.

In the end I probably won't have to buy 'just one' lens. I probably will end up buying more than one. I probably will have to look like a swiss mountaineer from time to time. I have every intention to try and get good at this stuff (not just good but really good).

I guess if I am addicted to something and spending all my money on it its better lenses and photography than crack.

I had to come back to the US precisely because of the economy. I got a day job and all that--but when it comes to big picture 'life decisions' spending extra money on lenses might turn out to be a wise investment.
07-28-2012, 08:43 AM   #19
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I've got both lenses and just got the Tamron 70-200/2.8 for this years soccer season. The 55-300 is nice in full daylight and worked fine if I were taking soccer shots then, but if there was an overcast, it was an evening game, etc. then my keepers dropped a good bit. Yes you loose some reach but you gain in IQ and light gathering ability.

There really isn't any right or wrong on this one. I've used the 70-200/2.8 inside just fine despite what Marc said. Lots of wedding photographers, from posts here, use the 60-250 apparently and its just f4 and others use the 50-135/2.8. The 70-200/2.8 covers the same 50-60 to 135 and does it at f2.8 also. It's sharp and works just fine. The drawback to it is that its larger and more intrusive in such settings.

07-28-2012, 09:59 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Docrwm Quote
The drawback to it is that its larger and more intrusive in such settings.
I don't mind being intrustive

If I am there at a wedding with a camera it will be because someone asked me to be there.

Although I won't rule it out, but my main intent is not to be a studio photographer. I would like to learn and maybe experiment with it...and if I was a billionaire I would have all of the above then hire people to come tutor me individually.

I am still reading lots of books...to learn the fundamentals of photography... so far "The Photographer's Eye" and "The Photographer's Mind" are the best. I will have to read the book 4 times to absorb everything.

I am not sure if I should just practice with what I have (I don't shoot sports all that much to be honest--until hockey season arrives--- but even when I do shoot sports I tend to not get sideline passes to the NBA games)....

With that 10-24 and the 17-50 and of course the 55-300 I can practice composition all day and night. I just don't know if I should give in to my LBA or not considering I do have to make a choice due to me not being a billionaire.

Honestly for where I live at (I live really far in the country--15 miles from a gas station in a 250 square mile national forest)....the sigma 50-500 would come in more handy simply because wildlife is kinda it for anywhere within an hour or so.

Maybe I am just thinking too much.
07-28-2012, 10:30 AM   #21
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For shooting wildlife a longer lens would be a good option. Especially if you have pretty good light. I have used both the Sigma 170-500 and the 50-500. The former is easier to handhold but the 50-500 is more versatile. I ended up trading my DA* 50-135 for a Bigma since i was using the70-200 more often. There are times when i miss the DA* since it was much easier to handhold.
07-28-2012, 09:58 PM   #22
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My thoughts here. I don't own the the 55-300; instead I have the Sigma 70-300. Since I got my Tammy, I can count on one hand the number of times I've used the Sigma. If I absolutely need the reach, I've got both the Sigma and a 1.4x tc (never got around to seeing which offered better IQ). Of course, my long range shooting needs changed a bit and I now need it more for indoor events than outdoor sports which is what prompted the need for speed. But I still hang on to the Sigma as it has served me well and keeping it is worth far more to me than the money I could get from selling it.
07-29-2012, 06:49 AM   #23
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I did some experimentation last night. I drove down to a MLB baseball game and bought myself a ticket. I was 17 rows up from the field just beyond third base. If you drew a line between first base and third...and kept on going....that is where I was sitting. They had the roof closed and hence the game was played under artificial lights.

First observation. Baseball isn't a 'super fast' sport but even at that I had to shoot the entire game @ ISO 3200 with the 300mm Pentax lens. I tried several different things and there simply wasn't enough light to really have a fast shutter speed beyond 1000 and that was 'really pushing it'. I did a lot of shots at 1/500 or less. It was just plain, simple, and obvious that the Pentax while great isn't a really good lower light lens. On a full size image there is obvious noise because of the ISO which means cropping down too much isn't goinna happen.

Aside from obvious open field daytime events where you might be stopping down anyway possibly the best use of this lens is for low intensity moviement at best unless you have full sunshine.

Where I was sitting I was roughly between 200 and 250 feet away from 1st base...from my vantage point almost all the infield was covered by the 300mm. The only spot really left 'wanting' was 1st base which the shots were a little 'wide'. If I was able to score seats on the front row above the dugouts the focal length is fine. I guess that is why the pros covering the games all sit there with their gigantic $10,000 dollar lenses.

For a college or high school game 300mm would be fine if the game were a daytime game because its easier to get access to the best vantage points than at a professional event.

08-02-2012, 01:50 PM   #24
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What about Sigma 120-300mm/2.8?
Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 EX DG OS APO HSM AF Lens (For Pentax)

IMHO its reach fits better in wildlife shooting than 70-200/2.8, although the latter when shooting indoors and people.

120-300/2.8 would give you the reach as Pentax 55-300 DAL.
Would actually be good combo with Pentax 50-125/2.8.

Only bad thing is the price which is quite alot.

I've also looked a better tele lens to outpeform the 55-300 DAL, but the question is difficult because 55-300 is so versatile and small. of course image quality isn't the best, but that's so much of reach in one small package. Maybe 300mm prime for the nature shootings and 70-200/2.8 for a walkaround could do the trick, but hey, that's 4kg more glass to carry than what 55-300 offers. ,)
08-02-2012, 01:59 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattipuh Quote
What about Sigma 120-300mm/2.8?
Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 EX DG OS APO HSM AF Lens (For Pentax)

IMHO its reach fits better in wildlife shooting than 70-200/2.8, although the latter when shooting indoors and people.

120-300/2.8 would give you the reach as Pentax 55-300 DAL.
Would actually be good combo with Pentax 50-125/2.8.

Only bad thing is the price which is quite alot.

I've also looked a better tele lens to outpeform the 55-300 DAL, but the question is difficult because 55-300 is so versatile and small. of course image quality isn't the best, but that's so much of reach in one small package. Maybe 300mm prime for the nature shootings and 70-200/2.8 for a walkaround could do the trick, but hey, that's 4kg more glass to carry than what 55-300 offers. ,)
If price is no object then the DA*300 + Sigma 120-300mm/2.8 would be an interesting combination. However, those two will cost you around $1150 + $3200 (if you could get it).
08-02-2012, 02:09 PM   #26
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For even more reach, and likely to be lightweight and reasonably priced, the upcoming DA 560 sounds like a lens to look out for. In the meantime, there is the DA* 300 for quality telephoto images when the 55-300 isn't fast enough at 300mm
08-02-2012, 03:18 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattipuh Quote
What about Sigma 120-300mm/2.8?
Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 EX DG OS APO HSM AF Lens (For Pentax)

IMHO its reach fits better in wildlife shooting than 70-200/2.8, although the latter when shooting indoors and people.

120-300/2.8 would give you the reach as Pentax 55-300 DAL.
Would actually be good combo with Pentax 50-125/2.8.

Only bad thing is the price which is quite alot.

I've also looked a better tele lens to outpeform the 55-300 DAL, but the question is difficult because 55-300 is so versatile and small. of course image quality isn't the best, but that's so much of reach in one small package. Maybe 300mm prime for the nature shootings and 70-200/2.8 for a walkaround could do the trick, but hey, that's 4kg more glass to carry than what 55-300 offers. ,)
The lens in question is not available in Pentax mount. I emailed Sigma personally and got a personal response from them.

No ETA either.
08-02-2012, 03:40 PM   #28
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For traveling in cities I combine a set of Limiteds (21,40,70) with an all around zoom 18-135 WR for a nice compact kit in a messenger bag.

For traveling with wildlife or nature in mind, then the a DA*300 with a 1.4 or 1.5 TC plus monopod gets added to the above.

I don't see my 70-200 2.8 (Sigma) as a travel lens, I use it primarily for indoor or night sports. I also have a 28-75 2.8 (Tamron) that combines with the Sigma for weddings or ceremonies.
08-02-2012, 04:34 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by alamo5000 Quote
The lens in question is not available in Pentax mount. I emailed Sigma personally and got a personal response from them.

No ETA either.
Yes, it's supposed to be released but they haven't given any time frame, hence the "+ $3200 (if you could get it)." in my last post.
08-02-2012, 07:05 PM   #30
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QuoteQuote:

1. I don't want to give up 300mm...in fact I want to go longer than that...but they don't make em.
Actually, someone does.

QuoteQuote:
but try holding it out in front of you for long periods and keeping it still.
A monopod is your friend.

I had the 55-300 which has pretty good IQ (better than the similar Tamron or Sigma 70-300's) and is relatively small, then the Tamron 70-200 that has excellent IQ and is pretty heavy. When I got the Sigma 150-500, I dumped the 55-300 as it sort of became the odd man out.
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