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08-18-2013, 10:13 AM   #1
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SMC-F 4,5/300 price

I'm relatively new to Pentax. As I was looking for some high qualiy lenses, I
stumbled upon this 4,5 300 SMC-F on ebay.
As the seller only lives 50 miles from here, I visited him to get a look at
the article. The lens seems to be in a fine condition, but unfortunately I
couldn't test it, since I forgot my camera. I bid 800 Euro, but he wants
more. I asked in a German pentax forum -- the others said, 800 Euro were a
reasonable price. Would you pay more?

08-18-2013, 05:03 PM   #2
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I'd say that's reasonable, as it should be cheaper than the DA* 300mm.

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08-18-2013, 05:23 PM   #3
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Welcome to the Forums. The F* is the pick of the Pentax 300 lenses, in my opinion, as it's the lightest and smallest, and it has a detachable tripod foot as well as a non-detachable sliding hood. It uses the Pentax screw-drive for AF, though, so if low noise is a major requirement, you probably should be looking at the DA*300. As Adam has said, it should be priced under the DA*300, which is the best way to look at prices, as the pricing structures differ from country to country.

I like my F*300 - I don't regard the AF noise (it isn't that noisy, in my opinion) as a problem for my purposes.
08-19-2013, 02:47 PM   #4

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Hi Landscape,

At current rates, 800 Euro = @ $1067 USD, and I'd say this is a reasonably fair price for either the F* or FA * 300/4.5, but the F* must include the tripod foot for this to be the case, IMO.

Personally, I chose the FA* since I planned to shoot it handheld the great majority of the time, and the hood, while a little fiddly, is the most robust hood I've seen for this class of lens. Also, in use, I like the fact that the focus clutch (switching from AF to MF on the lens) does not require me to also switch the body to MF, so I can use CIF (Focus Trap) on the fly with minimum fuss. In addition, I liked the fact that the paint matched my FA* 300/2.8, but that's just me being stupid. . .but they do look cool when I'm carrying/using both on two different bodies. . .

For me, the F* and FA* are both more desirable at this point because they are screw drive. The sound of the screw drive AF has never bothered the birds I shoot, and I shoot at very close range the great majority of the time. Screw drive also currently has the significant advantage of being supported by a number of available TCs, The Tamron 1.4x MC4s, Kenko 1.5x MC4s, Sigma EX 1.4x APO (but not the APO DG), and Promaster and Vivitars 1.4x s all will work with screw drive, but the SDM on the DA* will not work reliably with any TC that I know of, even if it has the PZ contacts. The PZ contacts will transmit power, but the AF feedback system will not work transparently and reliably in my experience.

Buying a used lens in this class is a pretty scary proposition. Being able to examine the lens and test it would take a lot of the anxiety out of the equation, and has to be worth something, I would think. I'd go back to the seller with cash in hand, and a firm idea of what I was willing to pay, test the lens (a good quick test for me is to shoot a TV screen or computer monitor at MFD wide open and see how well defined the pixels are -- do this with your best present lens beforehand to get an idea of what it should look like), and make your offer. Showing the cash sometimes makes a difference. . . If he doesn't go for your top bid, walk away -- there are always other lenses that will be offered in the future. If your luck runs anything like mine, as soon as you pay your money, another deal, equal or better will pop up within a month . . .

That happened with me many times -- ironically with 300mm lenses. I bought an A* 300/4 from a local photographer, then an FA* 300/4.5 auction appeared in two weeks -- I got lucky and won the auction at a very good price. A couple of years later, I was in the market for an AF 3../2.8, and 3 weeks after I bought a used Sigma EX 300/2.8 APO, a "bargain" grade FA* 300/2.8 was posted at KEH -- the only reason it was graded at "bargain" was because the usually supplied drop in filters were missing . . . I bought that one also since that had been my first choice, but I had resigned myself to the fact that I would have to settle for the Sigma. . .


08-21-2013, 10:47 PM   #5
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Original Poster

thank you for your help.

To your questions: The tripot foot, the lens bag and original packaging
are included. Everything looks unused, even the bottom of the tripot foot
is free of any scratches. Die aperture closes fast and without delay.

I will have to think about it.
08-22-2013, 12:19 AM   #6
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Hi Landscape,

That price is a little lower than I paid for my copy a couple of years ago - I was dubious about paying so much but it was advertised as "near mint" so I went for it. I do not regret it one little bit, and if I were to lose my copy for some reason or other I would have no hesitation in paying the same again. I prefer the F* version to the current DA*, even though it is slightly slower, it has a real feel of a quality build about it and I have no worries about shooting at maxium aperture as it is incredibly sharp and produces beautiful colours.

I hope my opinions and experiences help.

08-22-2013, 02:24 PM   #7
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This isn't quite up to date but...

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