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02-05-2009, 12:52 PM   #1
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Pondering on the 55-300

I have only one tele and it's the FA80-320. It's not a bad lens at all but I feel it's not that sharp. I may have a good deal for a 55-300 but I don't know how good it is compared to the 80-320. It seems that all the comparisons are done against the Sigma/Tamron 70-300. If someone has full size sample pictures available, I'd like to see them.

02-05-2009, 01:19 PM   #2
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The 55-300 is probably the best consumer telezoom available. Sharp even wide open. It's a great performer.

Of course it simply can't compare to a 70-200/2.8 but for what its worth, you're getting a top quality zoom.
02-05-2009, 01:42 PM   #3
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Hello Manu,

I just recently bought this lens and am quite happy with it. I don't know how it stacks up against your FA 80-320mm, but it's better than the 50-200mm that I have.

Here are 2 pics of the moon at 100%. It did a bit of sharpening in PP... But almost none.

Pic #1
http://images42.fotki.com/v1315/fileb1Xa/a07cd/1/1068337/5620328/KMGP1303.jpg

Pic#2
http://images46.fotki.com/v1433/filehTQp/a07cd/1/1068337/5620328/KMGP1315.jpg
02-05-2009, 01:43 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by ManuH Quote
I have only one tele and it's the FA80-320. It's not a bad lens at all but I feel it's not that sharp. I may have a good deal for a 55-300 but I don't know how good it is compared to the 80-320. It seems that all the comparisons are done against the Sigma/Tamron 70-300. If someone has full size sample pictures available, I'd like to see them.
There are quite a few threads here re: this lens.

I have one in my gallery which will give you a decent indication of the capability of the lens.

Shot in raw - basic raw conversion and no other pp.

Dyl

02-05-2009, 02:06 PM   #5
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Link to larger pic

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3345/3255814497_eb511e6c8e_b.jpg


Dyl
02-06-2009, 06:46 AM   #6
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Thank you dylansalt, your photo is very nice, unfortunately I cannot pixel peep to really see the quality of the lens.

Thank you halfpasthuman for the moon shot. But honestly I don't find it very sharp. I know it's a difficult subject but it's difficult to say from this shot if the 55-300 performs well.

What I would like to see is wide open shots at 300mm, 100% crops.
02-06-2009, 01:25 PM   #7
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Salut Manu,

D'accord avec toi.
I'll try to take a shot with @300mm wide open (f5.8) but you're right it's not the sharpest lens out there, but it's much better than the 50-200mm.

You can always get the DA*300mm, that one seems very sharp!

A+,
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02-06-2009, 02:01 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by halfpasthuman Quote
Salut Manu,
D'accord avec toi.
I'll try to take a shot with @300mm wide open (f5.8) but you're right it's not the sharpest lens out there, but it's much better than the 50-200mm.

You can always get the DA*300mm, that one seems very sharp!
Oh un autre montréalais :-) Bienvenue sur Pentaxforums.

If the 55-300 does better than the FA80-320 I'm sold. The DA* 300 is nice but it's a prime and I wouldn't have many uses for such a tele. I also pondered the Sigma 100-300/4 or even the Bigma but they are too big for the use I want. I may get one of them later though.

02-06-2009, 05:42 PM   #9
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A couple of sample pictures

Salut Manu,

Et oui, Montréal est pas mal sympas, mais pas bcp de gens avec des Pentax!

So see below links to pictures I've taken at different focal lengths. You can get the "original uploaded picture" by clicking the link below each pic. Warning, the files are very large, but I think that's what you wanted!

The titles speak for themselves I hope. 2 pics (with flash and without) per focal length, wide open. All taken on a tripod with a 2sec delay. EXIF should be intact.
Sorry, no 200mm, I finished the series and noticed once imported that 200mm was actually 230mm...
Pics

Aussi, on peut s'arranger pour que je te passe la lentille pour une fin de semaine ou qque chose du genre si tu veux faire des tests toi-même.

A+,
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02-06-2009, 10:00 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by halfpasthuman Quote
The titles speak for themselves I hope. 2 pics (with flash and without) per focal length, wide open. All taken on a tripod with a 2sec delay. EXIF should be intact.
Sorry, no 200mm, I finished the series and noticed once imported that 200mm was actually 230mm...
Pics

Aussi, on peut s'arranger pour que je te passe la lentille pour une fin de semaine ou qque chose du genre si tu veux faire des tests toi-même.
Merci beaucoup! Thank you for your help, very much appreciated. I may take your proposition, it would be very interesting to compare it directly to the FA80-320.
02-06-2009, 10:16 PM   #11
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SMC PENTAX-DA 1:4-5.8 55-300mm ED

QuoteOriginally posted by ManuH Quote
I have only one tele and it's the FA80-320. It's not a bad lens at all but I feel it's not that sharp. I may have a good deal for a 55-300 but I don't know how good it is compared to the 80-320. It seems that all the comparisons are done against the Sigma/Tamron 70-300. If someone has full size sample pictures available, I'd like to see them.
How's this for sharp? You can count the hairs on their legs!

My son is in the white jersey. Focus point is on the helmet of the player in the blue jersey.

If you have PhotoMe EXIF is intact.

1/500 f/9.5 ISO100 Tv -1EV Spot Meter @ 300mm WB Auto Daylight w/ K10D

Image is cropped about 50% and little PP done. Converted from Raw in PPL and resized and cropped in PSE. This is a GREAT lens for the money - especially in sunlight - great color rendition, very sharp and fast enough focus.



Last edited by monochrome; 02-06-2009 at 10:21 PM.
02-06-2009, 10:54 PM   #12
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I love mine and have been using it a lot for street shooting. Great lens for the price! (Got mine for $250.)
02-07-2009, 01:25 AM   #13
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This is a great lens for the budget price. I have owned one for a while now and am very pleased with it performance. Smallish and lightweight is a plus as well.

02-07-2009, 04:12 AM   #14
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Manu & HalfPassed ... Salut! Welcome to the jungle les boys

I have the 55-300 since the day it came out (I probably had the first one in the provice) and am very satisfied with it. I can't tell you how it compares to the 80-320, but it does what I need it to do.

Have a look at https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/post-your-photos/50217-k20d-sigma-17-70-da-55-300mm.html

Pat
02-07-2009, 01:41 PM   #15
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stopped pondering...

I finally bought the 55-300. I did buy it locally so I can return it in case I don't like it. First impressions:
- It's smaller than I thought (positive!), smaller than the FA80-320
- The build quality is just OK, lots of cheap plastics but at least there is a hood and it even has the nice opening for polarizers, nice touch.
- AF speed is a bit sluggish (I think the FA is faster here) and noisy.

Now for the IQ. Not much chances to do a lot of shooting (it rains and the light level is low) but from the pictures I took I'm not very impressed by the sharpness. But the overall picture looks very good because the contrast seems very strong. The next step will be to do direct comparisons with the FA. I'll report back.
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