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06-28-2020, 03:00 AM - 1 Like   #16
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The Tamron 60-300 is a big, heavy lens and I don't feel it is well suited to portraits due to awkward handling. The Tamron ADii 70-210/3.5 (19AH) is better, but still very big & heavy.

My preference would be an M75-150/4 or one of the Pentax 70-210s (M, A or F take your pick). Most of these will be very low in price, once you've worked out your preferred focal length, you can use that benchmark to decide on whether a 'better' zoom or faster prime would help.

06-28-2020, 05:01 AM - 1 Like   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
Check eBay completed items... The DFA is above $1000, and some Tamron's were below $300. If you find the DFA for not much more than $650+ buy it and be happy!
Finding a very good condition clean glass Pentax DFA 70-200 under $900 used is a jump-on-it-now bargain.

I'm still debating which of my 70-200's to sell.

Love the Tamron handling, relatively light and decently compact for the type of lens. And I already had the Tamron TC. Originally it was the Sigma that would go, I only bought it to compare to Tamron's. TBH I see very little difference, the Sigma perhaps a bit faster to lock focus and bokeh differs so that's a matter of taste. Both render beautifully and sharp, I wouldn't hesitate at all relying on either in an outdoor portrait shoot. A 2.8 70-200 is simply a great people lens, almost impossible to go wrong with one.

But after finding the Sigma 2x TC which pairs up so nicely.... It's more likely it will be the Tamron now. But if I had come across a nearly new Pentax DFA at the $650 you've found it would be a no-brainer: Pentax. Take care of it and you could get 100% of your money back selling it 10 years from now. That's assuming you could ever bring yourself to do so.

Geesh why is it so easy to buy a lens yet so hard to sell it?

One note for you since you mentioned never having plans to go beyond APS-C:
The 70-200's shine best on full-frame cameras. It's not that they don't work well, really well AAMOF, on crop. If you were using it for landscapes, at the zoo, at the park, at the sports field, it's actually a great selection you love having.

But if you're buying with the intent it be your default portrait lens the Pentax 50-135 2.8 is a much better choice IMHO, albeit probably costing a little more. That 150-200 range that offers such wonderful subject isolation for full-frame has the crop equivalent Pentax 50-135 serving that same full-frame 70-200 range. I'd never be without mine on a photoshoot where I'm using my K-70's.

How's that for muddying the waters, but guess what? For the money spent on buying a Pentax D FA70-200 (that $650 one you found being the exceedly rare exception so be careful), you can have both a Tamron 70-200 and Pentax 50-135.

Last edited by gatorguy; 06-28-2020 at 05:30 AM.
06-28-2020, 06:16 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by gatorguy Quote
Finding a very good condition clean glass Pentax DFA 70-200 under $900 used is a jump-on-it-now bargain.

I'm still debating which of my 70-200's to sell.

Love the Tamron handling, relatively light and decently compact for the type of lens. And I already had the Tamron TC. Originally it was the Sigma that would go, I only bought it to compare to Tamron's. TBH I see very little difference, the Sigma perhaps a bit faster to lock focus and bokeh differs so that's a matter of taste. Both render beautifully and sharp, I wouldn't hesitate at all relying on either in an outdoor portrait shoot. A 2.8 70-200 is simply a great people lens, almost impossible to go wrong with one.

But after finding the Sigma 2x TC which pairs up so nicely.... It's more likely it will be the Tamron now. But if I had come across a nearly new Pentax DFA at the $650 you've found it would be a no-brainer: Pentax. Take care of it and you could get 100% of your money back selling it 10 years from now. That's assuming you could ever bring yourself to do so.

Geesh why is it so easy to buy a lens yet so hard to sell it?

One note for you since you mentioned never having plans to go beyond APS-C:
The 70-200's shine best on full-frame cameras. It's not that they don't work well, really well AAMOF, on crop. If you were using it for landscapes, at the zoo, at the park, at the sports field, it's actually a great selection you love having.

But if you're buying with the intent it be your default portrait lens the Pentax 50-135 2.8 is a much better choice IMHO, albeit probably costing a little more. That 150-200 range that offers such wonderful subject isolation for full-frame has the crop equivalent Pentax 50-135 serving that same full-frame 70-200 range. I'd never be without mine on a photoshoot where I'm using my K-70's.

How's that for muddying the waters, but guess what? For the money spent on buying a Pentax D FA70-200 (that $650 one you found being the exceedly rare exception so be careful), you can have both a Tamron 70-200 and Pentax 50-135.
Actually, this is all good advice, and doesn't really muddy the waters. I should mention that I use a Pentax K-1 now, so I have definitely gone beyond APS-C. Now, the Tamron 70-200 is $400 or so, and the 50-135 is the same. So, you're right on the pricing. What I'm trying to do is find a lens I can use for decent portraits and decent mid-range at the same time, or more than, one, but staying below the $600 range. I'm not adverse to purchasing a good copy of the 35-70 or 35-105 Pentax-F series for portraits and a 70-200 (or longer) for other purposes, I suppose. However, my funds are limited.
06-28-2020, 06:28 AM - 1 Like   #19
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If you don't mind manual focusing, you could get the Samyang or the Rokinnon 85 mm F1.4 lens K mount version. It is a "A" lens so you can change the shutter speed or aperture from the camera. It is also a affordable option. They are available used here in the market place and used or new on Ebay. They also have it new at B and H now for $249.00.

06-28-2020, 07:00 AM - 1 Like   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by jawats Quote
Actually, this is all good advice, and doesn't really muddy the waters. I should mention that I use a Pentax K-1 now, so I have definitely gone beyond APS-C. Now, the Tamron 70-200 is $400 or so, and the 50-135 is the same. So, you're right on the pricing. What I'm trying to do is find a lens I can use for decent portraits and decent mid-range at the same time, or more than, one, but staying below the $600 range. I'm not adverse to purchasing a good copy of the 35-70 or 35-105 Pentax-F series for portraits and a 70-200 (or longer) for other purposes, I suppose. However, my funds are limited.
Oh, sorry, I guess I confused you with someone else who had no interest in full-frame.
In that case all you would need is the FA43 and the Tamron 70-200 IMO. That keeps you in the same price range too and really good glass.
06-28-2020, 07:03 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Vantage-Point Quote
If you don't mind manual focusing, you could get the Samyang or the Rokinnon 85 mm F1.4 lens K mount version. It is a "A" lens so you can change the shutter speed or aperture from the camera. It is also a affordable option. They are available used here in the market place and used or new on Ebay. They also have it new at B and H now for $249.00.
I don't mind manual focusing at all. Is there an advantage to the Samyang / Rokinon over the Pentax, Tamron, Sigma primes?
06-28-2020, 07:17 AM - 1 Like   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by jawats Quote
I don't mind manual focusing at all. Is there an advantage to the Samyang / Rokinon over the Pentax, Tamron, Sigma primes?
IMO the Samyang/Rokinon/Bower 85 1.4 punches way about its weight. Exceptionally sharp which can be a dual-edged sword for portraits, plus nice bokeh.. I have one and used it quite a lot up until I had an AF option in the FA77. And much more recently I bought the FA*85 so now the Bower version I have is totally redundant. Yet another lens that commonsense says list on the Marketplace for someone else to enjoy, but gosh.. I sometimes wonder about my lack of it in certain areas.
06-28-2020, 07:38 AM - 1 Like   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by jawats Quote
None of them seem particularly suited to portrait, although I got a couple good ones out of the 50mm 1.7 when I used it for my kids one time.
For FF 50mm may be perfect for the group portrait in limited space. Depends on how it limited, you even need to move to 40, or even 30mm.

06-28-2020, 08:26 AM - 1 Like   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by pschlute Quote
I would qualify your statement by adding that when the subject fills the frame to the same degree, DOF is identical across all focal lengths at the same aperture. So if someone chooses to use a 135mm instead of a 85mm and stands further away from the subject, the DOF will be the same in both images.
Right, spot on. I failed to mention the distance side of the aperture/distance/focal length triangle for evaluating DOF. Good catch.
06-28-2020, 08:56 AM - 2 Likes   #25
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Okay, all! I made a decision.

I decided to go with a Tamron 70-200 with teleconverter option. Since I have good 28mm and 50mm options already, this will wind out the upper end nicely. Plus, I can use it for astrophotography and sports. Thanks for all the advice!
06-28-2020, 10:12 AM - 1 Like   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by jawats Quote
Okay, all! I made a decision.

I decided to go with a Tamron 70-200 with teleconverter option. Since I have good 28mm and 50mm options already, this will wind out the upper end nicely. Plus, I can use it for astrophotography and sports. Thanks for all the advice!
I seems like you are trying to cover your LBA with the need of the new portrait lens. Don't ask how do I know
06-28-2020, 10:36 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by micromacro Quote
I seems like you are trying to cover your LBA with the need of the new portrait lens. Don't ask how do I know
That possibility should be considered, yes. With that said, I've been trying to find a new astro lens for awhile, as well, and this covers the bases.
06-28-2020, 11:36 AM - 1 Like   #28
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It's all down to perspective. You need to be 3 or 4 feet away from the subject for the best rendition - that's regardless of format and regardless of how much of the subject you want to include in the shot. Of course, if you end up with a lens with too wide an angle of view, there may be lens distortion issues (nothing to do with perspective "distortion"), but for head/shoulders down to half-body shots you're OK.
06-28-2020, 11:49 AM - 1 Like   #29
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I have NO experience with the following combination but I bet it would be excellent for portraits on the K-1; DA 60-250 f4. Fast enough, constant aperture, who cares about the vignetting. Good image quality, great zoom range.
06-28-2020, 11:06 PM   #30
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I have found that there are people who are intimidated by a big 70-200 lens. I prefer an 85 or 100mm lens. The 100mm macro works well for me.
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