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03-28-2017, 06:56 PM   #1
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70-200 2.8 tamron vs 55-300 WR RE?

Hi Everyone!

I'm looking to make the complete switch over from nikon to pentax. I've purchased the K-1 and the 24-70 2.8 and I love the combo. I currently have the nikon 70-200 f4 which is an amazing lens (sharp as a tack, super fast and accurate autofocus). I'm planning to sell it and buy a pentax lens which covers the telephoto range.

I have my eyes on the tamron 70-200 f2.8. It seems from online reviews that it's pretty sharp. I am concerned about autofocus accuracy and speed.

The 55-300 WR RE seems to have autofocus covered pretty well since it uses the new pulse drive system, but i'm wondering how sharp it is when compared to something like the tamron.

I don't care about the difference in aperture, but when it comes to AF and sharpness can anyone provide some comparative analysis or opinions? Thanks everyone!

-Lars

03-28-2017, 07:01 PM   #2
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The 55-300 is not a ff lens, but from what I hear the plm is fast. The Tamron 70-200 I have is fast focusing and locks on positively, plus is quite sharp even wide open. It is also an ff lens as well, so I'd likely go wit that.
03-28-2017, 07:28 PM   #3
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The Tamron uses screwdrive so that might be something to at least consider. I'm looking at buying one eventually.. the Pentax D-FA* version is 3x the price of the Tamron 70-200 f/2.8. Otherwise I'd recommend you look at the Pentax version instead.

Sadly we don't have any f/4 D-FA zooms and none on the roadmap. Several of us have been requesting them for some time, but I don't expect to see them in the next few years.. if ever in K mount. Pickings are slimmer for K mount than with F mount if you want modernish lenses.

THAT SAID there is a telephoto 65ish-300ish lens on the K mount roadmap, but I think it will be similar to the Tamron SP 70-300mm. However, like the Tamron, I think it will be a variable aperture design (if that matters to you).
03-28-2017, 08:41 PM   #4
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Thanks for the responses everyone. I do know the 55-300 is not FF, but i'm wondering if it's that kind of non-FF that has minimum to marginal vignetting but otherwise works well? I have the DA 50 1.8 and that is pretty decent on FF.

03-28-2017, 08:49 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by larsbars Quote
Hi Everyone!

I'm looking to make the complete switch over from nikon to pentax. I've purchased the K-1 and the 24-70 2.8 and I love the combo. I currently have the nikon 70-200 f4 which is an amazing lens (sharp as a tack, super fast and accurate autofocus). I'm planning to sell it and buy a pentax lens which covers the telephoto range.

I have my eyes on the tamron 70-200 f2.8. It seems from online reviews that it's pretty sharp. I am concerned about autofocus accuracy and speed.

The 55-300 WR RE seems to have autofocus covered pretty well since it uses the new pulse drive system, but i'm wondering how sharp it is when compared to something like the tamron.

I don't care about the difference in aperture, but when it comes to AF and sharpness can anyone provide some comparative analysis or opinions? Thanks everyone!

-Lars
I own the Tamron. It pairs well with my K1. The images I get from the combo are way beyond my expectations. The focus is pretty fast. I come from Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS world. The Canon was very fast and my Pentax Tamron combo seem to be just as fast too, albeit just a little noisier. Overall the Tamron, given the cost is a no brainer.
03-28-2017, 09:45 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by larsbars Quote
Thanks for the responses everyone. I do know the 55-300 is not FF, but i'm wondering if it's that kind of non-FF that has minimum to marginal vignetting but otherwise works well? I have the DA 50 1.8 and that is pretty decent on FF.
It has quite a bit of vignetting, mostly in the middle of the range, but I still wouldn't consider it for FF.

Adam
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03-28-2017, 10:44 PM   #7
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Thanks again everyone. I'm thinking i'll go for the Tamron!
03-29-2017, 02:43 AM   #8
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Looks like you've made up your mind but I can also echo that the Tamron is a cracking choice especially given the price, I honestly didn't expect too much but was blown away by the IQ on the K1.
I've sold mine now but regretting it a little and might have a look for another, it also works pretty well with the Pentax 1.4x Teleconvertor.

03-29-2017, 03:50 AM   #9
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The Tamron 70~200mm that is available in K-mount is now two generations back from Tamron's very-best 70~200mm. However, the lens has always had an excellent reputation. I just obtained one from a Canadian supplier for $599 new. I also got a Chinese-made replacement tripod-foot ring that has a built-in Arca-Swiss dovetail. No time as yet to try the lens on my K1 (busy with family affairs combined with lousy weather).
03-29-2017, 05:07 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by larsbars Quote
I have my eyes on the tamron 70-200 f2.8. It seems from online reviews that it's pretty sharp. I am concerned about autofocus accuracy and speed.
It's fast when using the viewfinder, barely usable when using live view. You can read the comparison with the Pentax 70-200.

QuoteOriginally posted by larsbars Quote
The 55-300 WR RE seems to have autofocus covered pretty well since it uses the new pulse drive system, but i'm wondering how sharp it is when compared to something like the tamron.
The 55-300 focuses faster in all lighting conditions. It's very sharp in the center, not so in the corners. It's an excellent consumer zoom, while the Tamron is a good pro zoom.

You could also consider the 60-250, it's an APS-C lens (which you can modify for full frame apparently) but it's an excellent performer, in some ways better than the Tamron, in all ways better than the 55-300.
03-29-2017, 05:15 AM   #11
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If you are used to super fast auto-focus the 60-250 will probably drive you crazy. The Tamorn 70-200 has always been one of the fastest focusing Pentax lenses., but it is screw drive.

Last time I checked the Tamron and about a 10% dead on arrival rate among forum users. That was a few years ago, but, you probably need to put it through it's paces as soon as you get it and be prepared to send it back. People love them once the purchase is sorted out, but some have received two bad copies and then gone on to something else.

But clearly a fantastic lens if you have a good copy.
03-29-2017, 05:49 AM   #12
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I love my tamron, but it took me 2 copies, and a two shipments to Tamron (first one Canada, second one to USA after switching to international warranty that costed me 5 additional years of warranty) to get it to be even across the frame at 200mm. I'd suggest actually going to the store and trying out the lens with K-1, make sure that it's even. I had a stoke of bad luck and received 2 copies that were decentered at the left side. I saved a ton of money though (compared to the DFA one), and lens is sharp (sharpest at 135mm), af is fast and reliable.
03-29-2017, 07:37 AM   #13
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The Tammy 70-200 f2.8 is a great lens but my focus mechanism broke quite after about 5 years so I purchased the DFA 70-200.
03-29-2017, 07:49 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by DDoram Quote
The Tammy 70-200 f2.8 is a great lens but my focus mechanism broke quite after about 5 years so I purchased the DFA 70-200.
That's the only knock on this lens I've seen by a tester, build quality. Built for intermittent use. I've never been convinced it would survive what I put my lenses through.
03-29-2017, 11:27 AM   #15
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I went out a few minutes ago, put the Tammy 70-200 on my K1 and shot a few test images, hand held. Uncropped and cropped detail below, taken @ 200mm, f4.5. I brightened both in PP as they were slightly dark, otherwise as-is from the camera. Focusing is not 100% reliable, it did miss on several of these quickie test shots.
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