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01-09-2013, 04:10 PM   #1
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Best value Zoom

Hi

Still new on all this stuff, but learning a lot in this forum.
Im searching for suggestions for a good zoom-lens (as good u can get for a 300-400 bucks)

I think since i hate flashes, i want something like f-2,8. I prefer longer zoom than wideness.
My thoughts is than when i get lanscape pictures, (that doesn´t move like my children) i can as well use an old M lens.

For portraits I now use the "K series" SMC Pentax 55 1,8. Very happy with this.
the zooms i got now is the kit lens and the sigma 70-200 1:4-5,6 UC II, not the best but i got it for 10 bucks.

01-09-2013, 04:28 PM   #3
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As far as long budget zooms go, the Pentax 55-300 is good. It's average-slow, however.

F2.8 is going to cost (new) about $729 for a Tamron 70-200. Nicer optically, shorter FL, heavier.
01-09-2013, 04:36 PM   #4
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i´ve seen an sigma 18-50 2,8 for about 350 used off course, but its too short.

01-09-2013, 04:41 PM   #5
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The cheapest 2.8 zoom for long range photography you can get right now is the Tamron 70-200 f2.8 and can be had new for $770 otherwise the cheapest I've seen it go for used is in the high side of around $500 if you're lucky.
01-09-2013, 04:45 PM   #6
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I think i go for the F or the FA. The older the better bor the bucks?
Maybe I should go for the Takumars 85 1,9 and 105 2,8 instead for 215? (the 85 in mint condition)

and use the kit zooms meanwhile.
01-09-2013, 05:02 PM   #7
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If you want F2.8 this Tamron is probably the best value:
Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 Di LD (IF) Macro AF Lens AF001P-700 B&H

If that's too much then take a look at the Pentax 55-300mm (DA or DA L if you're really on a budget):
SMC Pentax-DA 55-300mm F4-5.8 ED Reviews - DA Zoom Lenses - Pentax Lens Reviews & Lens Database

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01-09-2013, 05:07 PM   #8
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I just acquired an old vivitar 75-205 f3.5 that is quite nice. It's full manual, but if you can find one they are very very cheap. Pretty sharp, but you do have to focus manually and aperture is manual too. It's great value and usually around $50.
Excellent Vivitar 75 205 mm MC Macro Focusing Zoom Lens Pentax K Mount | eBay

There's a push pull version which some people are partial to since you can control focus and some simultaneously. Makes it easier for tracking moving subjects in manual focus.
Thread on it
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/26514-vivitar-75-205-f3-8-a.html

There are certainly better options out there, but for the price that they come up, they're quite good. I'd offer $40 for the one on ebay though

01-09-2013, 05:14 PM   #9
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The best value is definitely NOT the new 18-270

You're getting great advice - the 55-300 is a sweet lens but its not a top of the line lens either and the Tamron 70-200 is the best value IMHO among the 70-200ish f2.8 lenses (hence my purchase of one). You can't even find a functional f2.8 long zoom in your price range that is legit (or it sells in <2minutes).
01-09-2013, 05:20 PM   #10
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There is a Tokina 80-200 f2.8 on the marketplace right now for $600 iirc. That is my fast lens in that range and it is quite nice. I know it's above your budget, but F2.8 and $400 in pretty much every zoom length don't happen often. Primes sure, but even the 28-80 ish ranges in the F2.8 sell around or above $400 used
01-09-2013, 06:09 PM   #11
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I've had the DA 55-300 for a couple of months now and it's a stellar lens. Got it for $300 used local, but you can snag way better deals through the forums here from another member.

I just recently picked up the DA 18-250 for a song (packaged as part of a larger batch for really cheap) and it too is a stellar lens. They go used for around $325 - $350.

I've found that in both cases, a good high ISO performing camera can somewhat mitigate their slowness. The K5 and anything newer should do it.

In my opinion these are two of the best bang for buck long zooms right now for under $400.
01-09-2013, 06:10 PM   #12
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I got the chance to buy the pentax da 16-50 2,8 for 385 bucks, but stupidly i wasnt aware what the value of this lens was until i got to hang here around :/
I live in sweden so it can be a silly market here. i hope for desperate fools that have cash dependencies or changing camera system.
01-09-2013, 06:51 PM   #13
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As others have said:

As good as you can get for $300-400 (new) is the DA 55-300.
The Tamron 70-200 is also pretty nice, you might find it used for $500. I own both and wouldn't sell either unless I completely changed systems.
01-10-2013, 04:59 PM   #14
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Thanks for all the advices. I will go for the Pentax 55-300.
I think it could be nice with the extra 20 on the wide scale, and i guess that the 300 length could be usefull sometimes,
and that the AF will work white well up. To 200
01-10-2013, 05:01 PM   #15
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My stupid Iphone corrects my english into swedish words.
Most annoying
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