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02-05-2010, 06:35 PM   #1
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SMC 300mm f4

hello,
Sorry if somebody already post something about,but i am interesting in any info about Pentax smc 300 f4,i read the lens review,but i am interested what does it mean"it is fairly sharp,or sharp for its prize",how sharp is that when you compare it to Carl Zeiss Jenna 300mm f4 or to new SMC Pentax-DA 55-300mm F4-5.8 ED zoom?Zoom have a better
rating,but for SMC 300 f4 minus is "heavy,manual focus,no tripod mount" which i dont care ,and ok some said little CA and PF,for Zeiss i can post unchanged photo if it is necessary to compare sharpness,is it SMC good enough to use it with some TC or not?
How it is optically ,i dont count weight or manual focus in optical qualities.

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02-05-2010, 07:47 PM   #2
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here are a couple of shots with the 300F4 and 1.7x AF TC

first is a 100% crop using the K7D hand held at 1/40th and iso 1600



the next is with my *istD and use of af500ftz flash



need I say more
02-06-2010, 05:35 AM   #3
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Like Lowell, I'm a big fan of the old K 300/4. I think it is the best used 300mm buy out there if you don't mind a fully manual lens. I've had a lot of fun with it.







Tom G
02-06-2010, 08:25 AM   #4
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ok,first i am very sorry to put same photo,twice,and second,thanks for replay,i have opportunity to buy one SMC 300 and takumar 300 6.3 ,not SMC and it is M42,but very nice bokeh,but i think i will take
SMC 300mm F4,because of SMC and open wide focusing,dont mind if it is manual focus.

02-06-2010, 09:56 AM   #5
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Deal Killer...

QuoteOriginally posted by montizg Quote
hello,
"heavy,manual focus,no tripod mount"
All of this is true...

"No tripod mount" was the deal killer for me. The 300mm focal length demands a rock solid set-up. Trying to hand-hold balance and manual focus a heavy 300mm lens may not sound too difficult, but in practice, it is (even with a monopod). No amount of pp skill can correct for camera shake.

If you want to go long do not go cheap. Instead, do yourself a favor and get the DA 55-300, or better, yet, a DA (star) 300/4. You will love either, or both... (I do)

...my .02 cent$...
02-06-2010, 10:15 AM   #6
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SMC 300mm f/4

Hi Mont,
I have both SMC & DA 55-300, being the sentimenal sort,I'm really sweet on the
ol gal,the DA is good for something quickly developing(sometimes too quick for me)
I'll get screamed at for saying this, but in my humble opinion, SMC surpasses
DA in IQ. Your right about being steady with the long ones.Have had good results
with monopod/shoulder stock combo. Learned to controll breathing.
Have also seen what Mr.Goudge had fabricated for his,have access to horizontal
mill and if he's not watching,I'm going to copy.

Last edited by BillM; 02-06-2010 at 10:20 AM.
02-06-2010, 02:09 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Michaelina2 Quote
All of this is true...

"No tripod mount" was the deal killer for me. The 300mm focal length demands a rock solid set-up. Trying to hand-hold balance and manual focus a heavy 300mm lens may not sound too difficult, but in practice, it is (even with a monopod). No amount of pp skill can correct for camera shake.

If you want to go long do not go cheap. Instead, do yourself a favor and get the DA 55-300, or better, yet, a DA (star) 300/4. You will love either, or both... (I do)

...my .02 cent$...
It's not as much of a deal killer as you think. My shots were hand held. the K7 shake reduction is pretty good considering a 500mm length (1.7x 300mm) and 1/40th of a second.

BUT if you feel inclined to put the lens on a tripod, it is pretty easy. you can purchase everything at Home Depot. This is made using 1 inch by 1/8, and 1.2 by 1.8 inch aluminum. plates are laminated with rivets and epoxy. lens hoop is lined with leather as is the camera pad.

02-06-2010, 02:16 PM   #8
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I forgot to tell ,i am taking all pictures handhold at f8,Eleonora black falcon is heavily cropped and swans a only downsized to 900x600 pixels,not sharpen or anything,they even look better in original,lens is Carl Zeiss Jenna Sonar 300mm f 4.0-45, 2070 grams heavy,very easy to operate,almost nothing CA or PF,and i like heavy lens,sometime i can get sharp pic at 1/50 s handhold,with Pentax k200d,on gray day you can get easily 1/500 s at f 8.0,because of that i dont understand remarks "it is 6.3 or 5.6 very slowly,unusable,only for sunny days,you need to use monopod ,tripod or whatsoever"it was even good on IST dl, only one thing,this is not my lens,it is from my friend,i need to borrowed it any time i need it because of that i want to buy something for me,and i thought to buy something original for Pentax,but as i can see ,no cheap solution for good quality.
Anyway,thank you for the answers.

02-06-2010, 02:23 PM   #9
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BTW,Tom G,how far was this little birds from you,is it cropped ,sharpen,wide open or some other F stop?
02-06-2010, 02:42 PM   #10
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I think the SMC 300 f/4 is a great bargain out there. Price has been steady at around $300 for a few years (which is rare for good Pentax lenses). While you can get purple fringing or other CA in high contrast shots, if you watch the exposure, you'll be rewarded with some very nice shots. That extra stop of light over the 55-300 is always useful as well.

Here are a couple of shots I took with this lens on my K100D. I have to admit, though, that I did sell mine a while back after I bought the DA*300. My manual focus skills are no match for AF.



Here's an indoor shot that I would have had trouble getting without the f/4.

02-06-2010, 08:30 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by montizg Quote
BTW,Tom G,how far was this little birds from you,is it cropped ,sharpen,wide open or some other F stop?

I took these shots of the American Goldfinch some time ago. As I recall I was at the minimum focusing distance of 14-15 feet. ISO would have been 100 because that is what I normaly shoot at. I'm guessing f 8 to f 11 so I would have some depth of field. Yes, the images are cropped but I can't recall how much.

While the K 300/4 is no DA* 300/4 it is a least $1,000 cheaper based on the recent prices I have seen for that lens new. Would I prefer the DA* 300/4 - of course but it doesn't fit into the budget at ths time. On the other hand I quite like the results I have been getting frrom the K 300/4. The lens is sharp and I like the out of focus highlights. For the money it is a real deal.

Tom G
02-07-2010, 04:47 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
here are a couple of shots with the 300F4 and 1.7x AF TC

Interesting...I put in an order for the Pentax 1.7x AF TC during an irrational moment. Yet to recieved it.

I am assuming you are were using the Pentax TC...How did the 1.7x TC function with the 300F4. Did it provide you with a good AF lock?

Was actually think off trying with the DA 55-300mm. But this could be another option.

Last edited by Ahren; 02-07-2010 at 05:16 AM.
02-07-2010, 06:50 AM   #13
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Ahren

I bought the SMC-F 1.7X AF TC new in 1991 after I bought my PZ-1

I was able to try it out at pentax with my series 1 70-210 F3.5. At the time, I was concerned that since the manuals all stated F2.8 or faster it would not tolorate an F3.5 lens.

I also tested it with my SMC-M 100F4 macro and Vivitar 400F5.6

It focused just fine with all but the 400F5.6 so I bought it.

WHen I picked up the 300F4 a year later I also tested it and it focused just fine.

That was all on my PZ-1.

I never thought about it since

It just works
02-07-2010, 09:25 AM   #14
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Lowell....thanks for the reply.

I read in many places..that the Pentax TC needs f2.8 or better. So this is good to know.

My apologies...I just realised that I may have gone out of topic.
03-01-2010, 09:50 AM   #15
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This is more addressed to Mr Lowell which he replied earlier in m42 thread but I guess, it would be better to post this in K mount 300/f4 thread. How to I take meter reading for K300/f4 with 1.7 TC combination. I tried the following as mentioned by Mr Lowel and it does not work and green button do not operate when these two are stacked.

"In Av mode yes, K mount lenses only work at maxximum aperture.

BUT in M mode, set to any aperture, and press the green button and the camera stops the lens down, meters and sets the shutter to the correct speed. Also if you just want to read the exposure using the DOF preview activates the metering and you can see over/under exposure with the metering when the lens is stopped down."

I attached 1.7 TC to my 100D super, then 300/f4 to it. I set the aperture on lens to f4 and camera control is on Av mode and I could dial forward or reverse to set the aperture all the way from 2.8 to f32. What should I set here? If I take picture with this setting, it is blown out.

Say Av does not work here and I set the mode to M and I tried to press green button (or equivalent in 100Dsuper), NOTHING happens.

Where do I set the aperture? on lens? or on camera or both the places? Consider that I am dumb and point me in step by step instructions.

thanks in advance
Sudhakar
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