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01-19-2009, 01:24 PM   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by ryan s Quote
IQ aside.
Looks to me like you're throwing the baby out with the bathwater. AF is one thing, image IQ is another.

I use MF with the 55-300 when I'm shooting a bird in a tree. I don't care what kind of AF you have, you're not going to get accurate focus in that busy an environment. I use AF at any other time, and it works beautifully 90% of the time. If it starts to hunt, I bring it back with the Quick Shift. AF is not the full measure of a lens.

01-19-2009, 02:26 PM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by audiobomber Quote
Looks to me like you're throwing the baby out with the bathwater. AF is one thing, image IQ is another.

I use MF with the 55-300 when I'm shooting a bird in a tree. I don't care what kind of AF you have, you're not going to get accurate focus in that busy an environment. I use AF at any other time, and it works beautifully 90% of the time. If it starts to hunt, I bring it back with the Quick Shift. AF is not the full measure of a lens.
lol what? I'm not even commenting on the IQ when I played with it for a few minutes and took some pics...I'm talking about the AF and my initial impressions.

See...my problem is when people say they need AF, can't get by without Auto modes...then bitch when their Auto-stuffs let them down. I now manual focus probably 95% of the time with the FA.

My point of this thread was: compared to my old FA, the DA's AF just doesn't seem close to the FA. If it lets me down on static objects, how will it do with dynamic ones? So my personal conclusion (aka opinion) is that for double the price to upgrade...selling the FA for DA doesn't make sense when comparing their handling side by side (remember, we have to actually use the lenses to get an image).

Tell me I'm wrong all you want, I don't care. lol I can't even use the DA on all but one camera anyway.
01-19-2009, 02:32 PM   #48
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this is a good thread... since im considering getting my hands on a 55-300 in the near future.... and yea, ill be planning on using MF when shooting wildlife and the AF whenever... with the approximate MF trick to prevent focus hunting... the IQ at 300 is something i want... AF is a downside but its not going to ruin the IQ and the image in the end..
01-19-2009, 02:59 PM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by Vylen Quote
AF is a downside but its not going to ruin the IQ and the image in the end..
That's my point. There are a lot of very happy 55-300mm owners in the Pentax forums. (Of course, not all...)

01-19-2009, 03:23 PM   #50
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It's still dissapoint though, i used it and the optics are quite strong but man is it sloooooowwwwwwwww.

It's crying out for a decent ring USM motor, charge me another $100-$150 and be done with it. We have the 50-200 as an el-cheapo. it's just such a massive gap from the 55-300 at what $400 to the 300/4 at $1,300.
01-19-2009, 04:46 PM   #51
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Maybe the 60-250 f4 will cover the cap. Why don't Sigma/Tamron have a 70-200 f4?
01-19-2009, 04:46 PM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
It's crying out for a decent ring USM motor, charge me another $100-$150 and be done with it.
I'd buy one.

Last edited by audiobomber; 01-19-2009 at 11:06 PM.
01-19-2009, 05:03 PM   #53
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QuoteOriginally posted by zorobabel Quote
Maybe the 60-250 f4 will cover the cap. Why don't Sigma/Tamron have a 70-200 f4?

Except it's enormous, heavy and suggested pricing has it near the $1200 mark.

01-19-2009, 05:50 PM   #54
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50-200mm Redux?

QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
It's still dissapoint though, i used it and the optics are quite strong but man is it sloooooowwwwwwwww.

It's crying out for a decent ring USM motor, charge me another $100-$150 and be done with it. We have the 50-200 as an el-cheapo. it's just such a massive gap from the 55-300 at what $400 to the 300/4 at $1,300.
Yeah, agreed. I'd love to see the concept of a light, higher performance 50-200mm - maybe better optics and USM - but without the heft (price and weight) of the 50-135mm. I wouldn't worry about the 3.5-5.6 bit at all.

I have *Shock horror* nearly jumped to C*non a few times just based on their choices of 75-300mm (with or without USM, IS, F3.5-5.6, F4 or F2.8 - you know what I mean). For wildlife I believe that they are way ahead of pentax.

The lack of compact affordable wide primes stops me every time though .

Last edited by Clarkey; 01-19-2009 at 05:56 PM.
02-13-2009, 05:59 PM   #55
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Interesting thread. I was out taking pictures with my DA 55-300 during lunch time and I noticed this same unreliable AF. That's too bad because when the focus is correct the pictures are very good. But sometimes it just misses focus a bit. That's strange because the FA80-320 I have doesn't do that to the same extend. I'll try both lenses side by side tomorrow morning to do some comparison shots to know which one will go on the used market.
Actually my DA55-300 is a bit like my D-FA 100 macro, it has a very long throw and it's relatively slow to move from close to infinity and vice-versa. There is also this annoying AF issue that plagues the Pentax DSLR: sometimes the AF motor goes in the wrong direction and it looses at lot of time because of this. I thought that phase detect AF was supposed to know in which direction to go from the start, but it doesn't seem so with my Pentax.
02-14-2009, 01:57 AM   #56
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I didn't have a decent zoom lens and so bought the budget 55-300

Below was my first quick snapshot - I saw this bird and quickly took it at 300mm from my lounge through a gap of an open window.

Shot in dng and only converted with Stepok's Raw Importer - no further pp.

02-14-2009, 02:03 AM   #57
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Another very quick snapshot of an extremely alert bird - also handheld.

Processing as for above.



So for a budget (REITERATE - budget) walk around lens it is really really good
02-14-2009, 02:06 AM   #58
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Another test shot



Processing as above shots
02-14-2009, 02:12 AM   #59
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To be quite honest I could really indulge myself here and bore you with a ton of pics but am sure you get the idea that the lens can produce a decent pic.

On the focusing issues - if your lens is at 300mm and you want to suddenly capture a subject, lets say at 8m distance the lens auto focus system WILL zoom all the way out then in.

I did find this mildly irritating but countered it by using the quick shift focus to get proximate focus and then the auto focus had zero problems.
02-14-2009, 02:23 AM   #60
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Testing af-c at 300mm in single shot mode

Last edited by dylansalt; 01-16-2010 at 12:59 AM.
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