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11-11-2017, 08:24 AM   #16
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The M 200mm f4 is cheap, plentiful and an excellent performer. built-in hood too.

11-11-2017, 08:54 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by pschlute Quote
The M 200mm f4 is cheap, plentiful and an excellent performer. built-in hood too.
M200 is worth consideration, if you want to go as cheap as possible. If willing to invest a few hundreds more to get significantly better IQ , I would recommend M*300/4.
11-11-2017, 09:15 AM   #18
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300mm is a difficult focal length for legacy glass. Most lenses are large and cumbersome and have mediocre contrast and sharpness and will consequently sit on a shelf most of the time. Better to use a 55-300 or 70-300mm modern zoom. I am very interested in the 70-300ish lens on the Pentax full frame roadmap. Hopefully it will be both fast (AF) and sharp.
11-11-2017, 11:31 AM   #19
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Hasn't been mentioned yet, but the K200 f2.5 is a fantastic lens, and not necessarily going to break the budget. I picked mine up quite cheaply (it has cosmetic wear and tear but optically great), and it is a lot of fun to work with. Fast aperture means good subject isolation when it's desired. Also pretty good in low light if you need it.

11-11-2017, 12:22 PM - 1 Like   #20
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I use the 55-300 as a walk around long lens, and the M 400/5.6 as my "real" telephoto. The 55-300 has much better flare, CA and PF corrections, auto exposure and it zooms. The M 400/5.6 has more reach, and when the occasion allows for f/11 the CA is controlled well enough that LightRoom has no problems correcting it. For really long reach, I add the AFA 1.7x converter. That gives me a 680/9.5 - great reach, but I need a lot of light. Some shots are in the user gallery and on Flickr.
11-11-2017, 01:56 PM   #21
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I will repeat some of the recommendations above.
1) the original version of the 55~300mm is a real bargain - very flexible, AF good enough in decent daylight, focuses close enough @300mm for butterflies; IQ better than it should be for such an inexpensive lens. Very clean copies of the original version can be had at very reasonable prices.
2) The SMCA 200 f4 is a nicely made little lens. The retracting lens hood is a joy (the design should be mandatory on all SFL lenses of 135mm or greater); IQ is decent; BIG focusing ring which is silky smooth when working properly (which most are). Can be had for under $100.


I have both and would offer you either, but shipping from here to Australia is prohibitively expensive.
11-12-2017, 12:37 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Des Quote
For full-frame or crop Bruce?...
Well... I was going to suggest for FF, but after realising that the KP does ES so much better I am now considering the lens to be chosen around the ASP-C sensor!

QuoteOriginally posted by marcusBMG Quote
How much reach are you after? 400mm would be more recommendable for wildlife than 300mm and certainly 200mm. 200mm is a bit of an in between focal length, especially on apsc: not long enough for wildlife etc, tending to too narrow a FoV for more general use like portraiture... [/URL].
Yeh seems an odd length, nonetheless I think for my purposes 200mm is about as far as I can go.

QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
The Tak 200/3.5 is a special lens. Sharp wide open, beautiful bokeh, wonderfully smooth focus ring. Gotta watch the light, though, as it's prone to flare and bright cloudy skies can blow out the contrast.

The Tak 300/4 is sharp - sharper than the 55-300 (I've owned 2, but neither the HD nor PLM versions) - but CA is noticeable and the minimum focusing distance is long.

Both lenses can be suitable for large-ish wildlife. I like the Tak 200/3.5 for photographing little vignettes in nature - the lonely dangling leaf sort of thing - and really enjoy it's low-fi painterly rendering, which also punches up very well when you crank up the contrast in PP.

It's hard to make a recommendation without knowing your budget, usage intention (walk-around? tripod?).

Both the Tak 200/5.6 and 200/4 are usually available cheap, work well, and are sharper than the 55-300. I sold my 200/4, but the 200/5.6 is such a lovely little jewel that has lovely bokeh and deeper saturation than is usual for such a legacy lens.

I've got several other nice legacy tele lenses, but they are larger and more expensive.
Yes, I should have been more clearer on intent of purpose.

I'm looking for a lens that has a longer reach than my DFA 100mm 2.8, for the purposes of using in a church or lecture theater whereby I can mount the camera to a monopod, use ES, LV, Focus Peaking and take shots of the speaker or bride and groom, without flash and with minimal interference. It's predominately going to be used indoors, possibly in low light situations, so the wider aperture the better.
Yesterday I did more KP + DFA 100mm ES, LV, Focus Peaking shots using MF, it works pretty well, excellent stealth mode unlike the K-1 which clanks a little more.
For sure I'd take that combo out into the wild, I live in Australia, snakes, lizards, birds, plenty of things to shoot, but that would be secondary purpose and not main.
I've just realised that there are situations where AF is too noisy, but with Focus Peaking, ES and Manual mode (with a monopod to assist), the results can be excellent, especially on the KP where I can burst shoot as well.

If funds allowed I'd love the DA* 200 2.8, but currently that will have to wait, so was wondering if there was a good low light MF lens of approximately this reach that would do my task.
Weight is a factor I guess, the lighter the better for this task.
11-12-2017, 01:59 PM   #23
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I have the TeleTak 200 f5.6 (which is incredibly small), the M 200 f4, and a SuperTak 300 f4. All are nice lenses, reasonably cheap, fun to use, and can do the job, but... I can get consistently better results using my old DAL 55-300.

11-12-2017, 07:30 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by BruceBanner Quote
I'm looking for a lens that has a longer reach than my DFA 100mm 2.8, for the purposes of using in a church or lecture theater whereby I can mount the camera to a monopod, use ES, LV, Focus Peaking and take shots of the speaker or bride and groom, without flash and with minimal interference. It's predominately going to be used indoors, possibly in low light situations, so the wider aperture the better. Yesterday I did more KP + DFA 100mm ES, LV, Focus Peaking shots using MF, it works pretty well, excellent stealth mode unlike the K-1 which clanks a little more. For sure I'd take that combo out into the wild, I live in Australia, snakes, lizards, birds, plenty of things to shoot, but that would be secondary purpose and not main. I've just realised that there are situations where AF is too noisy, but with Focus Peaking, ES and Manual mode (with a monopod to assist), the results can be excellent, especially on the KP where I can burst shoot as well. If funds allowed I'd love the DA* 200 2.8, but currently that will have to wait, so was wondering if there was a good low light MF lens of approximately this reach that would do my task. Weight is a factor I guess, the lighter the better for this task.
The screw-drive versions of the 55-300 are f4.5 up to 200. Not too bad really - for only a little more than the A or M 200mm f4. Of course there is the A 200 f2.8 but it is much more expensive.
11-12-2017, 07:54 PM   #25
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The -A 400mm f5.6 is a very nice lens in terms of IQ, a bit big and prone to CA. It also worth looking at a smaller Tamron SP 300 f5/6 54B adaptall not a bad lens if my memory serves me right
11-12-2017, 10:08 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by BruceBanner Quote
I'm looking for a lens that has a longer reach than my DFA 100mm 2.8, for the purposes of using in a church or lecture theater whereby I can mount the camera to a monopod, use ES, LV, Focus Peaking and take shots of the speaker or bride and groom, without flash and with minimal interference. It's predominately going to be used indoors, possibly in low light situations, so the wider aperture the better.
Yesterday I did more KP + DFA 100mm ES, LV, Focus Peaking shots using MF, it works pretty well, excellent stealth mode unlike the K-1 which clanks a little more.
For sure I'd take that combo out into the wild, I live in Australia, snakes, lizards, birds, plenty of things to shoot, but that would be secondary purpose and not main.
I've just realised that there are situations where AF is too noisy, but with Focus Peaking, ES and Manual mode (with a monopod to assist), the results can be excellent, especially on the KP where I can burst shoot as well.

If funds allowed I'd love the DA* 200 2.8, but currently that will have to wait, so was wondering if there was a good low light MF lens of approximately this reach that would do my task.
Weight is a factor I guess, the lighter the better for this task.
My thoughts on this...

I think your 100 Macro is sharper than any legacy 200mm you're likely to acquire. Because of this, if you crop an image from your 100 so it matches the FOV of (for instance) the Tak 200/4, the Tak might have captured only marginally more detail, especially if both lenses are used wide open. And the majority of inexpensive legacy 200mm's are slower than f/2.8. And you'd have to spend more time & effort cleaning up CA. So, just from a practical POV, I don't think a legacy 200mm is the way for you to go. Best to save up for a DA* 200/2.8 or 70-200/2.8, IMO.

If you're looking for a MF for fun, I'll agree with @Stavri that the A 400/5.6 is pretty great, although I guess it's a longer focal length and larger than what you are looking for. But it's a sharp lens, has wonderful manual focus operation, and a closer minimum focusing distance than often found on long lenses of its vintage. This year I used mine for photographing butterflies, and larger butterflies like the Monarch (Wanderer by you, I think) can fill the frame, so it would work well for snakes, lizards, etc. I'm a complete fanboy of that lens, it's my go-to for ramblings in nature, even though it's not my absolute sharpest tele.
11-12-2017, 10:12 PM   #27
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I love the SMCP 200mm f4 that i like alot. As far as cheap lenses go at that focal length, I also really like my Yashica Yashinon DX 200mm f4. But there is also a Vivitar 200mm f3.5 that i like too. I forget who manufactured mine, but it is a nice lens as well, and was really cheap (prob. around $40-$50). I will also say that the Pentax DA 55-300 is a great all-around performer.
11-13-2017, 05:31 AM   #28
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Has anyone mentioned the Sigma APO DG 70-300mm lens? They offer some amazing 1:2 Macro shots at a minimum focus distance of 37". My copy is amazingly sharp. They can be found for about $125.00, and worth every cent!
11-13-2017, 05:57 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
If manual focus isn't an issue I suggest you should look into getting a SMCP-K 200mm f/4. It is a lens with a solid reputation, are relatively easy to come by and sell for a low price and offer decent optical performance.
Best IQ:Price out there.

For a bit more money K200/2.5 has come down in price recently. Open aperture easier to focus f/2.

Last edited by monochrome; 11-13-2017 at 11:02 AM.
11-13-2017, 07:23 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
For a bit more money K200/2.5 has come down in price recently.
The price may be down but the weight of that lens hasn't: K 200mm f/2.5 950g Vs 200mm f/4 535g. Also LoCa can be significant issue with fast old telephoto lenses.
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