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04-13-2014, 05:07 PM   #1
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A 70-200 F4 for Pentax - any ideas?

Hi,

I am trying to find a cheap autofocus lens in 70-200mm range, with F4 at the long end. I would hope to find it around $200, hopefully less than $300 on ebay.

So far, I identified a sigma 75-200mm F3.8 and lots of manual focus version: Vivitar 70-210 F2.8-4.0, Tokina 80-200mm F3.5-4.5.

Any ideas what else I could be looking for?

04-13-2014, 05:31 PM   #2
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Under $200 with f/4 maximum aperture at the long end and AF? That is a tough order even with a legacy manual focus zoom. If you decide to consider manual focus, there is the Pentax-A 70-210/4. It is a very good performer and has great build too. The various manual focus Vivitar Series I are a good option as are similar Adaptall-2 Tamron lenses. (The Tamron SP 70-210/3.5 (19AH) is sort of a cult classic.)

Good luck.


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04-13-2014, 06:11 PM   #3
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I think you might be just a bit optimistic. Please let us know what you find, this should be interesting.
04-13-2014, 06:13 PM   #4
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The cheapest pro AF lens in that range is probably the Tamron 70-200mm F2.8, used. That's what I'd recommend. There aren't any cheaper F4 variants AFAIK.


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04-13-2014, 06:38 PM   #5
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Hi guys,

it doesn't have to be pro.

From the research so far, there is a Sigma 75-200mm F3.8, which sells for under a $100 for other systems. There is a bit faster version for under $200.
Fast Tempo Sigma 75 200mm F2 8 3 5 for Sony AF A37 A58 A65 A77 A99 Alpha A Mount | eBay

I have a manual focus Tokina 80-200 F3.5-4.5, which is pretty good and for 25 bucks. I am looking for something like that, but with a rudimentary autofocus.

---------- Post added 04-13-14 at 06:39 PM ----------

Also, an autofocus prime around 200mm and F4 would be great too, but these are even pricier. I am just trying to get something faster than F5.6 on the long end, that's anywhere between 150-300 mm.
04-13-2014, 06:58 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by rrstuff Quote
Hi,
Any ideas what else I could be looking for?
It may as well be a mythical beast!

Seriously, you just need to find one of those deals of a lifetime, they can happen. To find something like that at that price means you'll have to get lucky. It would most likely turn up on Craigs list, a thrift shop or pawn shop, maybe a garage sale. Someone would have to not know anything about the lens to sell that cheaply. Good luck, it can be done.
04-13-2014, 08:21 PM   #7
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hmm. Thanks everyone.

Well, seems like there weren't many lenses like that. I will try to scout for one of the 75-200mm sigmas, or get SMC-F 35-135mm F3.5-4.5 and try to get closer.
04-13-2014, 09:16 PM   #8
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I recently picked up a JCPenney 80-200 f/3.5 in M42 mount. Still heavy at over a kilogram but dirt cheap and has a tripod collar. Definitely not auto-anything though if you can find an smc-A 70-210 at least you get aperture automation!

04-13-2014, 11:38 PM   #9
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I own the Sigma 75-200 3.8 (which reads f/4 on my k-5 by the way, I think I paid 60 euros for it or so. Does the job just fine! It's quite a sharp lens and the weight isn't as overbearing as a 2.8 variant would be.
04-14-2014, 12:21 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
(The Tamron SP 70-210/3.5 (19AH) is sort of a cult classic.)
Steve
I have to agree with Steve here. That lens is hands down my favorite zoom. While I shoot mostly primes, this is my go-to lens when I have no idea what might transpire in front of me. While it lacks autofocus, it does have a one-touch zoom-and-focus-at-the-same-time ring. Razor sharp and easy to snap into focus when you're used to that sort of thing.

Here's a quick snap I took the other day with it wide open, handheld at max zoom:


Last edited by OregonJim; 04-14-2014 at 12:29 AM. Reason: Add picture
04-14-2014, 08:46 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by rrstuff Quote
I have a manual focus Tokina 80-200 F3.5-4.5, which is pretty good and for 25 bucks. I am looking for something like that, but with a rudimentary autofocus.
That's easy, then. In this case, I recommend the SMC Pentax DA 55-300mm.

According to this post, the range of the 55-300 is as follows:

55-125 = 4.0
125-200 = 4.5
200-275 = 5.6
above 275 = 5.8

So from 55-200 you basically have a f4-f4.5 lens. Think of the extra 100mm as a great bonus. And no rudimentary AF here Also, this lens should outperform any old manual zoom you have, contrast and sharpness are very good by all accounts and reviews. Eventually I'll replace my Tamron 70-300 with it.

For manual focus, I recommend the SMC Pentax-A 70-210mm f/4. I have one and I still use it quite a bit more than my Tamron 70-300 AF, the quality is just noticeably superior. A great lens.
04-14-2014, 04:38 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by rrstuff Quote
From the research so far, there is a Sigma 75-200mm F3.8, which sells for under a $100 for other systems.
Here is a thread that should interest you:

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/10-pentax-slr-lens-discussion/60758-sigma...yone-know.html

Don't be too impressed by the reference to one variant being sold under the Carl Zeiss Jena label. It ain't a Zeiss.


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04-14-2014, 08:01 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
That's easy, then. In this case, I recommend the SMC Pentax DA 55-300mm.

According to this post, the range of the 55-300 is as follows:

55-125 = 4.0
125-200 = 4.5
200-275 = 5.6
above 275 = 5.8

So from 55-200 you basically have a f4-f4.5 lens. Think of the extra 100mm as a great bonus. And no rudimentary AF here Also, this lens should outperform any old manual zoom you have, contrast and sharpness are very good by all accounts and reviews. Eventually I'll replace my Tamron 70-300 with it.

For manual focus, I recommend the SMC Pentax-A 70-210mm f/4. I have one and I still use it quite a bit more than my Tamron 70-300 AF, the quality is just noticeably superior. A great lens.
I think the Tamron has about the same apertures at each focal length. In what ways do you find it inferior to the 70-210? I don't have a 70-210, so I'm curious. Is your Tamron the LD Di or an earlier model? I agree that, given a good copy of the 55-300, that would be a good way to go, if for nothing other than the 15mm (if you don't have it covered some other way, but maybe even if you do, to minimize lens changes.)
04-14-2014, 08:36 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
I think the Tamron has about the same apertures at each focal length. In what ways do you find it inferior to the 70-210? I don't have a 70-210, so I'm curious. Is your Tamron the LD Di or an earlier model? I agree that, given a good copy of the 55-300, that would be a good way to go, if for nothing other than the 15mm (if you don't have it covered some other way, but maybe even if you do, to minimize lens changes.)
I have the Tamron 70-300 LD DI, so I guess it's the latest model.
Where do I find it inferior? Mostly rendering, micro contrast and contrast. I think the Pentax is just a bit sharper but it looks a lot sharper because the colors (on my copy) seem much truer to life, and the contrast is so much better.
But then I've seen people in forums saying that the A 70-210 is a nicer lens than the 55-300. I don't know, I've never had the 55-300, but the old A lens is, at least on my copies, a noticeably better lens compared to the Tamron. And the Tamron isn't a horrible lens, either. It's fine. But no more than fine. I keep it because sometimes I need the AF. The A 70-210, on the other hand, I consider very good.
04-14-2014, 10:01 PM   #15
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The tokina RMC 80-200mm F3.5-4.5 is pretty excellent, from F5.0 onwards. Since it is only $25, this is what I would probably get over that over A 70-210mm.
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