Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
01-06-2022, 12:37 PM   #1
dewolf
Guest




what lens to get next

My Da* 300mm F4 took a slide and fall off the SUV hood. Rather nasty dent in front, slight grinding of the SDM but still works and is sharp.
I however do not feel it is going to have a normal life span based on the grinding.
I never liked the slow SDM and was thinking of upgrading to the DA 150/450 with it's faster motor.

How much will I lose in clarity, sharpness ? from anyone familiar with both.
My old body, which did not survive was a K-3, the new one will be a KP.

Any suggestions ? I mostly shoot wildlife, birds, in flight and still.

Thanks.

If I need to move this thread/topic, let me know and I will post wherever.

DeWolf

01-06-2022, 12:58 PM   #2
Senior Member




Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Canada
Photos: Albums
Posts: 198
QuoteOriginally posted by dewolf Quote
My Da* 300mm F4 took a slide and fall off the SUV hood. Rather nasty dent in front, slight grinding of the SDM but still works and is sharp.
I however do not feel it is going to have a normal life span based on the grinding.
I never liked the slow SDM and was thinking of upgrading to the DA 150/450 with it's faster motor.

How much will I lose in clarity, sharpness ? from anyone familiar with both.
My old body, which did not survive was a K-3, the new one will be a KP.

Any suggestions ? I mostly shoot wildlife, birds, in flight and still.

Thanks.

If I need to move this thread/topic, let me know and I will post wherever.

DeWolf
If the SDM is grinding maybe worth trying to convert it to screwdrive and see if that helps with the grinding. You also might consider the 55-300 PLM. I have both and the DA 300 way sharper than the PLM at 300 but the PLM is still very good.
01-06-2022, 01:12 PM   #3
Pentaxian
johnyates's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Saskatoon, SK
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,330
QuoteOriginally posted by dewolf Quote
slight grinding of the SDM but still works and is sharp
You could spend some money and have it repaired, or you could spend some money and acquire another lens that's not quite as good. I suspect ROI on a repair would make it worthwhile.
01-06-2022, 01:13 PM   #4
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
ramseybuckeye's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Hampstead, NC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 15,908
Sorry for your loss, I have the DA 300 but I don't have the 150-450 but I would not hesitate from the photos that I have seen taken with it. I understand it is a lot bigger, nearly twice as heavy, but that wouldn't bother me, at least I don't think so.

I think you'll like the KP too, it's great with the 300 and TC.

01-06-2022, 01:27 PM   #5
Pentaxian
Paul the Sunman's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Melbourne
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 4,362
The DFA 150-450 is one of my most used lenses. It is certainly very sharp, even wide open. I use it at 450 mm wide open quite a bit for birding in low light, and I don't feel I'm compromising.

However, at 300 mm it is only f/5.6, so you are losing a stop of light relative to the DA* 300, if that matters to you. At 450 mm is is still f/5.6, which is pretty good.
01-06-2022, 02:32 PM   #6
Pentaxian
bertwert's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Golden, BC
Posts: 15,161
I recently considered a similar question - DA*300 or 150-450, though having never used either. I went for the 150-450 in the end, and it seemed to be the consensus in the thread I posted (may be worth looking through: To 150-450 or not to 150-450? - PentaxForums.com). Anyways, really happy with it so far, great for birds among other subjects - and the wide end is proving to be more useful than I'd thought for landscapes and such. It also pairs great with the KP (especially with the battery grip).

01-06-2022, 03:00 PM - 1 Like   #7
hcc
Pentaxian
hcc's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,917
You really got some good advice so far. I will share my take.
If weight and money is not an issue, I would very seriously consider the D-FA150-450mm.The photographs that I have seen are hugely impressive.
If weight is an issue (and price), I would suggest to consider the 2nd hand FA*300mm f4.5. It was the older brother of the DA*300mm, without SDM but it is a true FF lens. The FA*300mm is smaller and lighter than the DA*300mm, and that is a huge benefits for me who busk walk with my gears. The IQ of the FA*300mm is great IMHO. The AF is noisy but good. No complaint. You may read the users' reviews: https://www.pentaxforums.com/lensreviews/SMC-Pentax-FA-Star-300mm-F4.5-Lens.html
Personally, I value lightness and the D-FA150-450mm is too large for me. My combo is the FA*300mm f4.5 with the HD-DA1.4x. It works great and give me a 300mm/420mm option,
Hope that the comment may help you.

01-06-2022, 07:52 PM   #8
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: May 2014
Location: Pugetopolis, WA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 785
I would also vote for any of the prime 300s + TC over the 150-450 zoom,
For birds, you rarely (if ever) need less than 300, you would not use the bottom end of the zoom.
The Zoom does get you out a bit further natively, and I hear it works well with the TC, so the potential for more reach is there.
I have my doubts whether the TC on the 450 gets you any better results than cropping it would though. No experience with it, so I can't say for sure.
The lighter prime package would easier to work with in the field.
I can use my DA300 with the 1.4TC hand held, but usually take a monopod, and sometimes tripod and gimbal.
When I used to regularly use my Old Bigma, (50-500), it was always on a tripod, and I'm not sure I've ever shot it at less than 300. Not a direct comparison with the 150-450, but close.
Judging by the fine work on your web site, you've gotten lots of your own experience and have your technique down pretty well, any shift in gear will result in some relearning,
YMMV
01-06-2022, 08:12 PM   #9
dewolf
Guest




QuoteOriginally posted by K-Three Quote
I would also vote for any of the prime 300s + TC over the 150-450 zoom,
For birds, you rarely (if ever) need less than 300, you would not use the bottom end of the zoom.
The Zoom does get you out a bit further natively, and I hear it works well with the TC, so the potential for more reach is there.
I have my doubts whether the TC on the 450 gets you any better results than cropping it would though. No experience with it, so I can't say for sure.
The lighter prime package would easier to work with in the field.
I can use my DA300 with the 1.4TC hand held, but usually take a monopod, and sometimes tripod and gimbal.
When I used to regularly use my Old Bigma, (50-500), it was always on a tripod, and I'm not sure I've ever shot it at less than 300. Not a direct comparison with the 150-450, but close.
Judging by the fine work on your web site, you've gotten lots of your own experience and have your technique down pretty well, any shift in gear will result in some relearning,
YMMV
Thanks
That web site by the way was shot with the original 55/300 before the PLM came along many years ago using the K5IIs
I have forgot about it lol, all the recent posts for the last 3 years were with the Da*300.

My only gripe about the available affordable primes in the focus speed is the SDM is just to slow for my needs, and although I love working with the prime, the faster motor on the 150/450 is the main draw.
I would likely never user anything below 300mm on that lens. A 400 prime would be ideal with a DC motor, but to costly. I have a slim budget.

It is my understanding that the 1.7TC does the focusing and thus has a shorter throw and thus a faster AF. Is this correct ?
But, above all, clarity is key for me, what I would like is one thing, what I demand is sharp. If I need faster focus I will run backwards lol.

My recent shots are this....
Misc recent shots part 1 - PentaxForums.com

But I will admit the old first version of my DA 55/300 was sharp on the long end. Bu to noisy. I have not seen the best reviews on the new version and I want more front element for light.
no to mention most of my filters are 77mm which I can step up or down a little.
Oh and BTW, as my condition deteriorates I will be using a tripod more and more so weight wouldn't be an issue in the long run.


My absolute limit is $2,000. and that will take me a year to save.
01-06-2022, 09:19 PM - 1 Like   #10
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
K2 to K50's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Ipswich QLD Australia
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,634
QuoteOriginally posted by dewolf Quote
Oh and BTW, as my condition deteriorates I will be using a tripod more and more so weight wouldn't be an issue in the long run.
Just a warning: using a tripod might alleviate the weight issue while shooting, but it will still very much be an issue if you are going to carry it (and the tripod) around. I don't know what your "condition" is, but I am 77 yrs old, below average height, slight build, and prone to shortness of breath occasionally (stairs, steep uphill climbs etc), so I do very much feel the weight of carrying the 150-450 around, with or without a tripod. That said, I have circumnavigated local "lake" sites over a 1-2 hr period with the 150-450mm. I survived, though tired and dripping with perspiration!!! (The climate here in Queensland is mostly warm, and very often humid!)


I also have the 55-300 PLM. Fast AF. Light. Sharp most of the time.

But the 150-450mm is also very sharp, and fast. Just very weighty! But - I haven't used the 55-300 in the six months or so that I have owned the 150-450mm!!!
And, provided I can shoot at 1/1600 or 1/2000, I have been surprised at the shots I have managed hand-held with the 150-450mm.

Way back in the late 1970's I owned a Pentax K2 and a Pentax 5.6 400 prime. It was a lot easier to hold, hand-shoot, etc. (But I was a lot younger then, too!!) It is a pity Pentax does not have a 400 prime in its current lineup.

But the 150-450mm is a great birding lens provided you can cope with not just holding it for shooting, but for extended periods of walking around with it!

Here are some hand-held shots I have taken.

Pied Cormorant - PentaxForums.com
Osprey Patrolling its' Seaside Hunting Ground - PentaxForums.com.

(Although, of course, there are so many people who have taken superior shots to mine with their 150-450mm. See the appropriate thread: Post your HD PENTAX-D FA 150-450mm F4.5-5.6 ED DC AW pictures! - Page 195 - PentaxForums.com).

Oh, and by the way, that was a very nice collection of shots in your "most recent" post. 3 or 4 of them are particularly good viewing!!!

Last edited by K2 to K50; 01-06-2022 at 09:42 PM.
01-06-2022, 10:00 PM - 1 Like   #11
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jun 2021
Location: NE Ohio
Photos: Albums
Posts: 897
If you're comfortable with used, you can also consider the F* or FA* 300 4.5. I would probably think you can find a good one for under $700. There's also the FA* 400 5.6 if used is ok; somewhat rare but comes up often enough on ebay for under US$2000.

Not totally sure if the screwdrive AF will be satisfactory for you, in terms of speed. I've never used an SDM or DC or PLM long Pentax lens so I can't compare. It's possible screwdrive is just as fast or faster (which varies from lens to lens and camera to camera, and I bet none are as good as PLM), but we know for sure it's noisier. I don't mind any of that with my F*300, but then I'm already happy with manual focus lenses, so any AF is a bonus for me. If size and weight are an issue, the F*300 is definitely terrific in that department.
01-06-2022, 10:11 PM - 2 Likes   #12
dewolf
Guest




QuoteOriginally posted by wadge22 Quote
If you're comfortable with used, you can also consider the F* or FA* 300 4.5. I would probably think you can find a good one for under $700. There's also the FA* 400 5.6 if used is ok; somewhat rare but comes up often enough on ebay for under US$2000.

Not totally sure if the screwdrive AF will be satisfactory for you, in terms of speed. I've never used an SDM or DC or PLM long Pentax lens so I can't compare. It's possible screwdrive is just as fast or faster (which varies from lens to lens and camera to camera, and I bet none are as good as PLM), but we know for sure it's noisier. I don't mind any of that with my F*300, but then I'm already happy with manual focus lenses, so any AF is a bonus for me. If size and weight are an issue, the F*300 is definitely terrific in that department.
I have tried the screwdrive and sadly just as slow but more power and sometimes more accurate, I didn't see any speed improvement though.

---------- Post added 01-07-22 at 12:16 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by K2 to K50 Quote
Just a warning: using a tripod might alleviate the weight issue while shooting, but it will still very much be an issue if you are going to carry it (and the tripod) around. I don't know what your "condition" is, but I am 77 yrs old, below average height, slight build, and prone to shortness of breath occasionally (stairs, steep uphill climbs etc), so I do very much feel the weight of carrying the 150-450 around, with or without a tripod. That said, I have circumnavigated local "lake" sites over a 1-2 hr period with the 150-450mm. I survived, though tired and dripping with perspiration!!! (The climate here in Queensland is mostly warm, and very often humid!)


I also have the 55-300 PLM. Fast AF. Light. Sharp most of the time.

But the 150-450mm is also very sharp, and fast. Just very weighty! But - I haven't used the 55-300 in the six months or so that I have owned the 150-450mm!!!
And, provided I can shoot at 1/1600 or 1/2000, I have been surprised at the shots I have managed hand-held with the 150-450mm.

Way back in the late 1970's I owned a Pentax K2 and a Pentax 5.6 400 prime. It was a lot easier to hold, hand-shoot, etc. (But I was a lot younger then, too!!) It is a pity Pentax does not have a 400 prime in its current lineup.

But the 150-450mm is a great birding lens provided you can cope with not just holding it for shooting, but for extended periods of walking around with it!

Here are some hand-held shots I have taken.

Pied Cormorant - PentaxForums.com
Osprey Patrolling its' Seaside Hunting Ground - PentaxForums.com.

(Although, of course, there are so many people who have taken superior shots to mine with their 150-450mm. See the appropriate thread: Post your HD PENTAX-D FA 150-450mm F4.5-5.6 ED DC AW pictures! - Page 195 - PentaxForums.com).

Oh, and by the way, that was a very nice collection of shots in your "most recent" post. 3 or 4 of them are particularly good viewing!!!
Well, I am only 68, but with CHF Parkinson's, Copd and tomorrow I will get 6 epidural injections again in the thoracic spine, So, I don't plan on walking much at all, if ever lol, Thus the reach is a plus for me. I will get a good old wooden surveying tripod however.
BTW great shots you have, esp the Cormorant. Never seen a Pied one. Very cool
Sigma has a 400 prime, or had, but they rarely have any that work on Pentax. I also considered a Nikon lens with an adapter but the cost is crazy lol.
I swear theyd sell a broken one for parts at $2,500 lol

Well I have time to decide, and who knows perhaps pentax will come out with a newer lens that fits the bill. One can hope
01-07-2022, 06:37 AM   #13
Pentaxian
jddwoods's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Newark, Delaware
Posts: 1,033
QuoteOriginally posted by dewolf Quote
I have tried the screwdrive and sadly just as slow but more power and sometimes more accurate, I didn't see any speed improvement though.

---------- Post added 01-07-22 at 12:16 AM ----------



Well, I am only 68, but with CHF Parkinson's, Copd and tomorrow I will get 6 epidural injections again in the thoracic spine, So, I don't plan on walking much at all, if ever lol, Thus the reach is a plus for me. I will get a good old wooden surveying tripod however.
BTW great shots you have, esp the Cormorant. Never seen a Pied one. Very cool
Sigma has a 400 prime, or had, but they rarely have any that work on Pentax. I also considered a Nikon lens with an adapter but the cost is crazy lol.
I swear theyd sell a broken one for parts at $2,500 lol

Well I have time to decide, and who knows perhaps pentax will come out with a newer lens that fits the bill. One can hope
I am very much in the same boat as you. I am 69 years old and have Parkinsons. I have considered the DFA 150-450 but the expense and size have stopped me from getting it. I have the DA* 300 and the 1.4 TC but even that combo is hard for me to hold steady with my Parkinsons tremors. What really worked for me for bird and wildlife photography was adding the 55-300 PLM. The size, weight and especially its fast autofocus have proven to be a godsend for me. So, for birding/wildlife outings my go to kit is K-3, 55-300 PLM which I use up to about 280mm (where it is still f5.6) and the DA* with and without the TC for 300 and 420 mm. I also use a monopod with the DA* which helps as my tremors have worsened over time.
01-07-2022, 07:30 AM   #14
dewolf
Guest




QuoteOriginally posted by jddwoods Quote
I am very much in the same boat as you. I am 69 years old and have Parkinsons. I have considered the DFA 150-450 but the expense and size have stopped me from getting it. I have the DA* 300 and the 1.4 TC but even that combo is hard for me to hold steady with my Parkinsons tremors. What really worked for me for bird and wildlife photography was adding the 55-300 PLM. The size, weight and especially its fast autofocus have proven to be a godsend for me. So, for birding/wildlife outings my go to kit is K-3, 55-300 PLM which I use up to about 280mm (where it is still f5.6) and the DA* with and without the TC for 300 and 420 mm. I also use a monopod with the DA* which helps as my tremors have worsened over time.
It took me sucks how much we start to break down as we get older but I suppose that's the card you don't and the ones you pick. So yeah you know I've thought about just staying with that 300 mm prime. If it weren't so bleeding slow, I barely get my shots at 300 mm. I really want the extra reach. I'm just now at stage two on my cardiologist has assured me I will never reach stage 3 and probably won't even make it another year and a half to two years. So he really advising me to stay fit but don't ever do it over to it. I'm trying to talk to a phone lol but the TC would give me the reach_the speed. Well, I guess I'd have to suck it up and deal with it. At least I am very familiar with that particular lens
01-07-2022, 08:18 AM   #15
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
ramseybuckeye's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Hampstead, NC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 15,908
QuoteOriginally posted by dewolf Quote
Thanks

It is my understanding that the 1.7TC does the focusing and thus has a shorter throw and thus a faster AF. Is this correct ?
But, above all, clarity is key for me, what I would like is one thing, what I demand is sharp. If I need faster focus I will run backwards lol.

My recent shots are this....
Misc recent shots part 1 - PentaxForums.com

But I will admit the old first version of my DA 55/300 was sharp on the long end. Bu to noisy. I have not seen the best reviews on the new version and I want more front element for light.
There are a lot of interesting ideas in this thread, I have not heard that the 1.7TC is faster than focusing just the lens. I know my DA*300 seems to focus faster with the DA 1.4, but I just think that is me. I had the old DA55-300 (non WR) and now have the DA 55-300PLM. I feel the sharpness is the same on either, but on the old one I had to get to F8 to get sharpness, the PLM delivers wide open, and it also does not have that loud and painfully slow screw drive autofocus, it's quiet and fast. I also use the PLM lens with the TC but only if the light is good. It would not be a combo to use in a dark wooded area. Funny I rarely shoot lower than 300, but a few weeks ago I took the PLM and teleconverter in the Kayak with me, I though I might get a few landscapes in that way. Well I saw a bunch of Black-crowned Night Herons in some trees, took some shots paddles past to come back from the other direction for different angles and all of a sudden a marsh rabbit hops into the water and swims right past me, for once, I was glad to have the zoom, I was able to get some good shots at 77mm, where with the 300 I may have only go the rabbit swimming from behind. I only add this incident in there to say that sometimes a zoom can be better than a prime, certainly in an opportunist way, and I never would have got that with the old 55-300's slow autofocus, it happened very fast and I was lucky not only with the gear I had, but just to be looking in the right direction. The PLM has a little slower aperture, but it is actually having faster usable aperture in my experience. I'll use the PLM and TC more often when at the beach or on the water especially if I want a lighter smaller kit. But when I go inland to the forests, or if it's really overcast or stormy looking I'm more likely to use the DA*300 & TC. But get what you want or you may never feel satisfied. There is also those Bigmas, I rented a 50-500 several years ago and considered buying it, but I thought the DA 300 images were just better. But that 50-500 was not too heavy and pretty easy to handhold, I'm sure I would have got better with is had I used it more that 2-3 days. But I don't think they have produced them for many years so it could be risky getting a used one.

Hopefully your cardiologist is just pessimistic.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
150-450mm, antarctica, birds, camera, da*, dfa, flight, focus, issue, k-mount, kp, lens, lol, love, months, pentax, pentax lens, plm, post, sdm, ship, shots, slr lens, smc da, tripod, weight
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How to decide what lens to get next... Kona Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 16 11-21-2011 02:58 PM
Keep K-x buy premium lens, get K-r and get good lens, get the K-7 w/ lens or K-5? crossover37 Pentax DSLR Discussion 19 02-06-2011 10:38 PM
Which Next Lens Should I Get? (I have 31, 77, 50, 18-250 Already) PentaxForums-User Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 3 06-15-2009 11:43 AM
Next Next Pentax. Now MJB DIGITAL Photographic Technique 16 02-12-2008 07:00 PM
Lets talk about the next-next Pentax codiac2600 Pentax News and Rumors 63 01-14-2008 08:01 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:24 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top