Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
03-28-2009, 09:17 PM   #1
Veteran Member
arpaagent's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 777
Need Help! Time for a new lens!

Hey everybody!

I know everyone loves to give input on what lenses someone should buy next, and now is the time for me! As some of you may have noticed, I lately dumped a bunch of nice A-series lenses and a few others on the marketplace to create some budget for a single nice lens (trying to consolidate and remove some redundancy).

My current equipment is in my "About Me" section: PentaxForums.com - View Profile: arpaagent. As you can tell, I already have a pretty nice selection of MF and a few AF lenses...but I really want to try out some pro level equipment for fun.

I am in the market for one of two things (eventually both): 300mm prime, or fast tele zoom.

1. A nice 300mm prime, to be used for wildlife and birds (I also have a 1.7x AF Adapter that will help get me a little further). The reason I would get this lens would be to have enough reach and speed to shoot wildlife without dragging 5lbs of gear with me

Here's what I am thinking of:

SMC F* 300/4.5: Said to be one of the best 300mm primes made. Useful features such as removeable tripod mount and built-in hood. I like that it is slightly more compact and lightweight than the DA*.

SMC DA*300/4: Very good comments regarding this lens. Bonuses are the weathersealing, SDM (I guess it's a bonus?)...a little bigger + heavier than the F*.

SMC A* 300/4: Not AF by itself but sounds like a great performer, and pretty small + compact at that. Not sure If I would want to go only MF though. But it is a pretty sweet lens.

Sigma 100-300/4: I know this isn't a prime and it is noticeably larger/heavier than the primes, but worth mentioning since it is fast at 300mm.

2. A nice (70,80)-(200,210)mm f2.8 zoom lens, would use it for general shooting and also sporting events. I almost won a Tokina 80-200/2.8 on eBay the other day (maybe someone here got it?) but sadly I was only the 2nd highest bidder...it would have matched my 28-70/2.6-2.8 very nicely .

Possibilities:

SMC FA* 80-200/2.8: The stuff dreams are made of. I would need to unload a few other pieces of gear to get this one (which I really wouldn't mind doing...).

SMC DA* 50-135/2.8: Truthfully, a little bit short for what I want...but seems to be all the rave.

Tokina AT-X Pro AF 80-200/2.8: Although information about it seems somewhat sparse, it appears highly-regarded by those that have used it. And as I have mentioned, it would match my other Tokina AT-X Pro zoom. These can be tricky to track down but are much cheaper than the Pentax equivalent.

I know Sigma and Tamron have competing zooms, but I haven't had too much time to research them. The only thing I worry about with these two would be the build quality. I really enjoy solid equipment, so I don't want to regret getting something that doesn't feel really well-built.

Ok, well that sort of summarizes what I am deciding about right now. Any comments or opinions regarding any of these lenses would be greatly appreciated. Also feel free to makes suggestions if you have a good/better way to spend my money . Oh and if you happen to have something you think I might want and you are looking to get rid of it, feel free to send me a PM.

I would like to make a decision rather quickly so I don't do something silly like decide to take the money out of paypal so that I can save it or something boring

Thanks!
-Jim

03-28-2009, 10:04 PM   #2
Veteran Member
Raybo's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 871
Hows about the Pentax 400mm A* f/f2.8 ED IF?
You already have the 1.7 AF TC, it would be a good pair IMHO.
03-28-2009, 10:12 PM   #3
Veteran Member
arpaagent's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 777
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Raybo Quote
Hows about the Pentax 400mm A* f/f2.8 ED IF?
You already have the 1.7 AF TC, it would be a good pair IMHO.
Although I am sure that lens is stunning and absolutely magnificent, I am not sure that I have even ever seen one for sale since I've had my Pentax DSLR. And to imagine what one might cost ... And yes I'm sure that would make a great combo with the 1.7x AF TC
03-28-2009, 10:13 PM   #4
Senior Member
K100Dave's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Omaha, NE
Posts: 111
Oh man I would kill to have that FA*80-200mm that you have listed as a possibility. Some of the images I have seen this lens produce is just down right sickening. Imho, it's definitely one of the sharpest tele-zooms around.

03-28-2009, 10:28 PM   #5
Lens Buying Addict
monochrome's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Kirkwood (St. Louis) MO
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 19,494
Have you thought about classic Tamron?

Haven't seen anyone suggest this (unless I skipped one).


Tamron Adaptall-2 SP 300mm F/2.8 LD-IF Model 60B Fast-Aperture Telephoto Lens

Tamron 60B at Adaptall-2.com


There was one in the Marketplace for $780 this week as a package with the 112mm filter and a FA1.7x AF TC. Took a while to sell. Didn't include the Tamron 140F 1.4x TC nor the 43mm rear filters.

Tamron SP 300mm F/2.8 LD-IF Model 60B

Last edited by monochrome; 03-28-2009 at 10:34 PM.
03-28-2009, 10:41 PM   #6
Veteran Member
Raybo's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 871
QuoteOriginally posted by arpaagent Quote
Although I am sure that lens is stunning and absolutely magnificent, I am not sure that I have even ever seen one for sale since I've had my Pentax DSLR. And to imagine what one might cost ... And yes I'm sure that would make a great combo with the 1.7x AF TC
I'd be happy with a 500mm f4.5 lens, and just think of the $ you will save!
03-28-2009, 10:44 PM   #7
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,255
QuoteOriginally posted by arpaagent Quote
SDM (I guess it's a bonus?)
It definitely is a requirement, if you plan to use AF, while shooting wildlife that is bothered by noise.
03-28-2009, 10:52 PM   #8
Veteran Member
arpaagent's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 777
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
Haven't seen anyone suggest this (unless I skipped one).


Tamron Adaptall-2 SP 300mm F/2.8 LD-IF Model 60B Fast-Aperture Telephoto Lens

Tamron 60B at Adaptall-2.com


There was one in the Marketplace for $780 this week as a package with the 112mm filter and a FA1.7x AF TC. Took a while to sell. Didn't include the Tamron 140F 1.4x TC nor the 43mm rear filters.

Tamron SP 300mm F/2.8 LD-IF Model 60B
I have definitely looked at that lens, but I think any 300/2.8 is going to be too large for me at the moment. It's over twice the weight of the F* 300... I understand that f/2.8 will take me places that f/4.5 can't which makes the decision tougher. But if I go for the 300mm prime then I'd like to be able to take it on walks/hikes, and that extra weight/size might just be too much to haul around. It would be nice to be able to hold one of those in person to really be able to judge it's size/weight.

Any of these lenses will be my first foray into the larger lenses...I think the biggest/heaviest lens I have now is either the A70-210/4 or the Tokina 28-70/2.6-2.8, neither of which are really all that big.

03-28-2009, 10:56 PM   #9
Veteran Member
arpaagent's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 777
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by asdf Quote
It definitely is a requirement, if you plan to use AF, while shooting wildlife that is bothered by noise.
That's a good point. I am pretty comfortable now with my MF skills since I've been working with lots of MF glass lately...so if I needed to I could go MF for such occasions if I didn't grab the DA*. I guess since I've been mainly MF lately I haven't even thought of or considered this. I'll certainly think about that in my purchase. What types of wildlife have you found to be generally sensitive to noise?
03-29-2009, 12:58 AM   #10
Pentaxian
jsherman999's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 8,228
.


I guess I'd go with the DA* 300 f/4 or Sigma 100-300 f/4, although you should verify that your TC
will work with the Sigma (or will work with the SDM of the DA*, for that matter.)

The F* may be smaller than the DA*, but not by much, really, and the weather sealing is a very
nice feature to have.

The Sigma 100-300 f/4 is an exceptional modern zoom, and is very usable at 300mm & f/4. At f/5
already, it's superb. It is, however, huge

I don't think you're losing much optically by going with the Sigma 100-300 over the DA* 300, and
you're gaining the 100-300 range at the same aperture.

Wish I had some better flora/fauna to show you, but it's early here yet.
Sigma 100-300 examples:

240mm f/5

300mm f/5

300mm f/4.5

300mm f/5




Another lens I swear by is the Tamron 70-200 2.8 (haven't used the Sigma.) It's
got sharpness and bokeh to die for, but only gets out to 200mm, maybe short for
your bird shots.


.

Last edited by jsherman999; 03-29-2009 at 01:03 AM.
03-29-2009, 06:01 AM   #11
Veteran Member
arpaagent's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 777
Original Poster
Thanks for the opinion + shots jay. Those shots really show that the Sigma zoom can perform!
03-29-2009, 07:19 AM   #12
Pentaxian




Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Perth Australia
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,511
i've heard good things about the tamron 70-200 f2.8 also its on my list :P
03-29-2009, 03:28 PM   #13
Veteran Member




Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,255
QuoteOriginally posted by arpaagent Quote
What types of wildlife have you found to be generally sensitive to noise?
The one in my avatar was a very evident example. You will get any animal's attention with, say, DA 55-300's AF noise, but little mammals will get frightened and run away. My impression was that waterfowl didn't appreciate the noise of my 55-300, either, but to a lesser extent.
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!
300mm, af, at-x, equipment, k-mount, lens, lenses, pentax lens, sigma, slr lens, smc, time, tokina
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
having a hard time with the 55-300 lens bobloadmire Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 28 06-02-2009 02:13 PM
Your All Time Favorite Pentax Lens? sagar Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 76 01-02-2009 08:18 AM
First time purchasing lens, need advice Shogo Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11 03-01-2008 06:14 AM
First time in studio. New GX-10. New Lens. Snowcat Post Your Photos! 1 11-24-2007 07:19 PM
Killing time with Fa 31/1.8 lens roentarre Post Your Photos! 5 12-05-2006 06:41 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 04:54 PM. | See also: NikonForums.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