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04-15-2010, 07:17 AM   #1
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Good 300MM for K10

I own a K10 and am living in Monteverde Costa Rica and feel a need to purchase a 300MM lens to capture some of the amazing scenery and birds here. I am a novice to the camera and one friend recommended theTamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di LD Macro Lens for Pentax AF. Does anyone have any experience with this lens or suggestions for a comparable lens in this price range? Thank you in advance for any suggestions.

04-15-2010, 07:55 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by chrisooo Quote
I own a K10 and am living in Monteverde Costa Rica and feel a need to purchase a 300MM lens to capture some of the amazing scenery and birds here. I am a novice to the camera and one friend recommended theTamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di LD Macro Lens for Pentax AF. Does anyone have any experience with this lens or suggestions for a comparable lens in this price range? Thank you in advance for any suggestions.
If you search you'll find quite a few threads on this lens.

Short summary:
1) Incredibly sharp for a lens in its price range
2) Main drawback is that it is prone to purple fringing in high contrast situations
04-15-2010, 01:46 PM   #3
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Your friend has a good point. Tamron 70-300 is a very good lens considering it's price tag. I (my wife) own a copy. Frankly I never liked it but she is very happy with it. Many on this forums prefer DA55-300. Apparently it's sharper with less PF. I never had it so I can't comment. Only other 300 I had were Sigma 100-300/4 which is superb, and Pentax FA*300/4.5 which is just as good if not tad better IMHO.

At the end of the day it all depends on how much are you willing to spend. Remember in 97 out of 100, good lenses don't come cheap!
04-15-2010, 08:17 PM   #4
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I definitely prefer the DA55-300mm to other lenses I have tried, though my main experience was with the Sigma, not the Tamron. But there have been many threads here on this issue and every one of them comes to the same conclusion. You can also find sample images way better than my attempts.

fly and flower



04-15-2010, 08:39 PM   #5
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It's a very good lens for the money. But what is your budget. I have an FA*300mm f4.5 and there's nothing that can touch it. But you are going to pay quite a bit more for something like this and in some ways it's less flexible (no macro feature or zoom)

The current model is the DA*300mm f4 that is weather sealed as well.

Here's a shot from the FA*300mm
04-15-2010, 09:05 PM   #6
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If you can swing the cash, the DA*300 is a very nice lens..







The Tamron is a nice lens for the money and for what it is. Do be aware that in the high contrast situations, Purple Fringe does become an issue...



But in many cases, it's a relatively easy fix..



In other situations, it's quite sharp..



04-16-2010, 02:05 PM   #7
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Thanks for the feedback!

Internet is a bit hard to come by so I'm just getting all of your feedback and wnated to say thank you! For now I think I will go with this lens, see how it works and if I need to expand your suggestions will come in handy.
Muchas gracias

Chris
04-16-2010, 05:03 PM   #8
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I love my very old SMC Pentax-K 300mm 1:4: Bojidar Dimitrov's Pentax K-Mount Page

This lens is very good. Gives great sharpness, has a very smooth damped focusing ring, and with catch focus, you need a very fast moving subject (maybe a bird flying straight at you at close distance) for it not to get its target.

The build quality is as good as it gets, forget about all the pro lenses today from any big brand, this will out last them. It also has a built in hood that works great.

Most of this album is capture with this lens: Finnmarkslpet 2010 by Alexander Evensen - an Album on Expono Photo Sharing

Not the best post production by me, but still:
http://www.expono.com/go/photo/502856_l.jpg

100% crop of the moon:
http://www.expono.com/go/photo/360807_m.jpg

From right after I got the lens: (The K10D and no catch focus used)
Yelling at the Neighbors by *netrex on deviantART

04-16-2010, 06:24 PM   #9
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there are a lot of great shots posted here with the SMC 300F4, I use mine with the 1.7x AF TC for a 510mm F6.7 lens.
see the link below for photos using this combo over the last 20 years
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/997614-post3.html
04-16-2010, 06:55 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by chrisooo Quote
I own a K10 and am living in Monteverde Costa Rica and feel a need to purchase a 300MM lens to capture some of the amazing scenery and birds here. I am a novice to the camera and one friend recommended theTamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di LD Macro Lens for Pentax AF. Does anyone have any experience with this lens or suggestions for a comparable lens in this price range? Thank you in advance for any suggestions.
I have owned the Tamron but sold it for the Pentax 55-300.
One advantage of the Tamron is its Macro capability, which I found rather good.

The Pentax does not have a Macro capability, but can be used in taking shots of flowers etc, but may require a bit of cropping.

Purple Fringing was my biggest negative of the Tamron.
Otherwise it is quite a good lens for its price. No way would I say "Don't buy it!"
04-16-2010, 10:54 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bramela Quote
The Pentax does not have a Macro capability, but can be used in taking shots of flowers etc, but may require a bit of cropping.
Or snap a $40 Raynox 150 on the front and have far better macro capability than the Tamron or Sigma alternatives.
04-18-2010, 08:34 PM   #12
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IMO, the Tamron 70-300 is a very good lens for the price one pays. It is lightweight, compact telephoto macro zoom with a maximum magnification ratio of 1:2 at the 300mm setting. It is ideal for shooting subjects that are difficult to approach such as sports and theatrical events. The lens also features special effects such as the capability to provide beautifully blurred backgrounds to highlight the main subject in protraiture, or "compression effects" that make the most of the telephoto lens.
In maco mode, subjects as close as 0.95m can be shot within the focal range of 180-300mm, for true macro photography. The optical system incorporates a LD (Low Dispersion) lens, resulting in clear sharp images free of chromatic aberration.

The FF lens, Pentax FA*300/4.5 is just as good for comparison if not better.

I read that many on this forum members likes the DA55-300 which is sharper with less Purple Fringing. This lens is not from the FF era and I can only say that this lens is optimised for digital SLR. Since I have not tried this lens I cannot comment further on it.

Cheers.
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