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Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4

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26 57,213 Sat June 15, 2019
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88% of reviewers $195.10 8.85
 Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4

 Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4
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 Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4
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 Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4
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 Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4
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 Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4
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 Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4
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Description:
Lens Elements/Groups 4/4
Length 0.7" (19mm)
Diameter 2.6" (66.5mm)
Weight 2.5 oz (100 g)
AF /SDM /HSM compatable

The Kenko Pz-AF 1.5x Teleplus, the Promaster Spectrum7 AF 1.7x, the Vivitar Series 1 1.4x and the Tamron-F 1.4X Pz_AF are believed to be the same or slight variants of the same TC, and Kenko has been suggested as the manufacturer. dpreview thread here.

This PF thread is a comparison and discussion of 1.4x tc's.
Price History:



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Site Supporter

Registered: January, 2009
Location: East Bay Area, CA
Posts: 6,267
Lens Review Date: June 15, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $300.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: SHARP!
Cons: none
Camera Used: K3II   

This 1.4x TC is the money!

It never fails to deliver a good telephoto image, when filling the frame beyond the max FoV of the lens. I've used this with Tamron 70-200, F*300, and DFA150-450.

In the case of my gear, it is ALWAYS better to add this TC than to crop the non-TC frame for an equivalent image size; as such, I am happy to keep this TC handy when I need more range at the long end of my lens.

Highly recommended!

Let these samples tell the story:

Moon Over The Delta

Moon &; Observatory
NOT photoshopped, BTW.

Angel Belly


Sun Spots AR12192
   
Loyal Site Supporter

Registered: February, 2014
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 1,060
Lens Review Date: May 23, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $33.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharpness, color, Keeps AF, Small, Light
Cons: Little IQ loss, hard to find one
Camera Used: K-S2 & K5iis   

Iíve been looking for a decent 1.4x converter to use with my rare Tokina ATX-SD 300mm f2.8 manual focus lens for almost a year. I had a Pentax 1.4X-S unit a while back, it did not work well with the Tokina. I almost bought a used Pentax SMCA 1.4X -L converter for $295 but I found the Tamron at B&H for $32.95 !!!

My first use was with my 55-300mm DA on a K-S2. The combination worked surprisingly well, even focusing fairly swiftly at an effective f8/420mm. Central sharpness remained very good ay all focal lengths except the longest where the DA 55-300 isnít super sharp to begin with. Bokeh was very nice and smooth and colors remained very Pentax like.

The next lens to be mated to the Tamron TC was a Pentax SMC-A 400mm f5.6, becoming a 560mm f8. I had more than a little trouble nailing correct focus with the K-S2. The in focus images were definitely less sharp overall than the same subject shot with the 400mm lens alone. A no-go for this combination.

Tried it with a FA 50mm f2.8 Macro and the results were quite good. It gives an extra inch or two distance from the subject which helps greatly when shooting insects. IQ loss was worth the distance gain.

Finally I broke out the big, heavy Tokina 300mm f2.8 and K5iis. Impressive. Wide open the combination is somewhat soft and lacked contrast. One stop down at an effective f5.6 the images became much clearer and at f8 and 11 the IQ improved to excellent. Better than my Pentax SMCA 400mm f5.6 at those apertures. Color was saturated and contrast very good. The one negative, and the bokeh became very busy and somewhat harsh, especially grass and twigs. Definitely a keeper to go with the big 300mm.

I would have willingly paid $150 to $175 for this converter, glad I somehow managed to score it from B&H for $32.95!

EDIT: My original copy of this TC had lens mount screw come partially loose which allowed one of the A series contact pins to fall into the TCís aperture position relay mechanism. The TC became a permanent part of my F*300/4.5 until I removed the screws holding the lens mount to the converter. Parts flew everywhere when I took off the mount, however the converter was then able to be removed. Now, just so you know, I liked this unit well enough to shop around and buy another! KEH for $70. It performs better than the one it replaced and works very well with my newly acquired KP and the 300/4.5. Still the best value in Pentax Mount 1.4X TCís, just keep an eye out for loose mount screws.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: June, 2015
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 669
Lens Review Date: September 6, 2018 I can recommend this lens: No | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 3 

 
Pros: increases reach a little
Cons: IQ degradation
Camera Used: Pentax K-50   

As Pentax users, we have limited options for longer lenses. One of them is this teleconverter. I've probably shot around 10K shots with the FA* 300 f/4.5 without the converter, mostly of wildlife, so this will be a real-world review based on my gut feeling with this teleconverter.

So, the idea of a teleconverter is that it magnifies part of the image circle onto the sensor. Attaching a 1.4x to a 300mm lens gives an FOV of 420mm. In reality, the effective detail you get will be somewhere in between an idea 420mm lens and the bare 300mm lens.

The good news is that in ideal conditions, this teleconverter can resolve more detail than cropping the 300mm image, which I've tested using a sturdy tripod indoors. So is this teleconverter worth it? I'd say no (at least on the FA*) for a few reasons.

1) Increased ISO necessary. Because you lose a stop of light, you also double the ISO, at least. You might also have to increase the shutter speed (decrease shutter duration). Typically, where you used ISO 400 before, ISO 1000 might be necessary. This is less of an issue perhaps on newer bodies and on full-frame especially.

2) Decrease in IQ quality. All teleconverters do this to some extent. I feel like there is a little too much degradation with this one, especially compared to the Canon series III teleconverters.

3) Pentax IBIS on my K-50 seems to be fairly bad when it comes to longer lenses. That might not be true of newer bodies, though.

Let's see an example:



This was taken on a Pentax K-50 with the FA*300 f/4.5 @ f/5.6 (effective, f/8) at ISO 1000, 1/1000s. No denoise applied, and default Darktable sharpening. Here's the same picture, cropped for actual use:



At viewing size, this Blue Heron nearly fills the vertical part of the frame and the shot looks pretty good. Even in a fairly large print, this would look pretty good. I have compared this shot to one I took of the same heron without the teleconverter. While there is slightly more detail present in the tele shot, uncropped, the non-tele shot actually looks better because it is at a much lower ISO and has that smooth crispness that is somewhat lost with the tele shot.

The bottom line is that at typical distances for birds, the cropped bare lens has superior "overall image quality" compared to the lens with the teleconverter, despite the teleconverter in good light having a slight edge with additional resolved details.

So, I strongly recommend passing on this one. The only exception would be is if you just use straight-out-of-camera JPEGS, and only shoot in strong, good light. In this case, this TC will save you from cropping.
   
New Member

Registered: May, 2016
Posts: 12

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 1, 2016 I can recommend this lens: No | Price: None indicated | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: tiny, well-built, fully compatible with FA lenses
Cons: IQ degradation
Camera Used: K-3   

Actually, with the arrivel of digital photography I don't see the point in using teleconverters... Just crop the picture and you will have better IQ Wild Mark perfectly demonstrates it in his review with the test pictures of electricity wires.
After reading too many positive comments here on pentax forums I actually bought this hailed Tamron converter a year ago. Mainly because I got it for a cheap 100 euros NOS. Tried it twice on my FA 2,8/135 (yeah, don't laugh ) and sold it off on ebay for thrice the price. Loss in sharpness, contrast, f-stops, AF-speed, you name it... Cropping the picture to mimic a 200mm yielded way better results. If you still want full resolution AND picture degradation, just extrapolate the raw-file in advance in order to retain those 24 MP after cropping. Then you have the same without spending hundreds of bucks
Think this was the reason why Pentax was so reluctant to come out with any new TCs for years.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: December, 2012
Location: IOWA Where the Tall Corn Grows
Posts: 2,988

3 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 10, 2016 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $110.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp even at lower F stops
Cons: Hunts a bit more in AF
Camera Used: K-3   

I've tested this teleconverter on both my F*300 and DA*200 lenses. I have been more than pleased with this TC. Hardly any noticeable degradation in IQ at all. Sharp and contrasty. The only downside is it hunts more using autofocus but I guess this is a small price to pay for such an excellent TC. I saved over $350 by going with this TC over the new Pentax HD 1.4 TC. Although not weather resistant and no HD coatings, I think this teleconverter makes a wise less expensive alternative to the more expensive Pentax HD 1.4 TC.

F*300 @5.6 NO teleconverter

Untitled by frankweiser, on Flickr

F*300 @5.6 WITH TAMRON Teleconverter

Untitled by frankweiser, on Flickr
   
Pentaxian

Registered: June, 2013
Location: Newcastle
Posts: 1,954

3 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: December 12, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $150.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Works well at most apertures, good IQ
Cons: Not any of note - IQ is expected to degrade
Camera Used: K3   

This is a TC worthy of putting on your camera. For the pixel peepers there is IQ loss, but that is to be expected! The loss, however, is minor and quite acceptable.

AF performance is almost unchanged. Quite happy with this TC on the FA*80-200 and F*300. Both lenses performed admirably with the TC. In fact there was only marginal IQ loss on the FA*80-200 (the F*300 was superior by itself - cropped - to be expected).

This TC is not the same as the Kenko 1.5X DG. Unless my Kenko copy is really bad, these two are different and should not be equated.

A shot taken with the FA*80-200 and a commensurate crop without the TC



TC



No TC
   
New Member

Registered: December, 2014
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 3, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: I love what every one else said and could not agree more
Cons: none yet
Camera Used: K3   

Today I just posted my first posting as a new member, After trying to get some information on my new aquisition, I ended up coming to this location. After seeing what others have said about this little work of art, I am delightful to say that this jewell came hidden in a box with a ZX-50, a Tamron 70-300 and a Pentax FA 28-80 and other stuff for the princely sum of $45. My purchase description is detailed on my new member post. I also got from another person today (a 100 mile cross city and back jaunt here in MPLS) a ZX-10 and 2 lenses along with a new camera case that retails for about 50 dollars for a grand total of $55 and $100 total for the day. With this in mind, I did not want to unrealilistically skew or devalue the item by saying it was free so I left its value out above. It appears to mechanically work fine on my Pentax-FA 28-80, my Pentax-F 35-80, my Sigma 18-55 and my Pentax DAL 50-200 and my Sears 80-200 and my Tamron 70-300, however I have not shot outdoors today due to cold and darkness here in northern Minnesota. I had wanted to get some extra Milimeters and with this unit I can now do it across all my lenses except my 3 older M42 lenses.
   
Senior Member

Registered: January, 2011
Location: Sao Paulo
Posts: 127

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: December 4, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $50.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Small, light and very good IQ. Sharp. SDM and DC works (yeah!)
Cons: expensive and hard to find. (price edited, wrong entry)
Camera Used: K5, K5II, K10D   

Here in Brazil, Pentax is not as popular as the big 2 guys, so is hard to find compatible acessories. A couple of years ago, I had the oportunity to buy a pair of this TC, new and for a reeeeeeeeally good price, because allmost nobody uses Pentax here, and the shop was selling it as a "take it off quickly, ok" deal.

At that time I tested with a 18-135 and a Takumar F 70-200 (a sweeeet lens. Very good IQ) and liked a lot the results. But i don't use Telelenses so often and sold the two TC's.

I don't need to say I missed then afterwards, and have been looking for another good deal like that. Some days ago I finally found and this time I'll keep it, just waiting those "large diameter telephoto lens" from the Photokina display

My conclusion is this: If you find one, buy it. The IQ is great, if the lens is great. AF works with SDM and DC lenses, as well as Screwdrive. Some may be slow, like the 16-50, the only SDM lens I have, but mine copy is screwdrive converted, so dont know if thats what's affecting the behavior. With the 18-135, AF works normal, and screwdrive native lenses works Ok too.

EDIT 2015-01-19: I just bought a Sigma 70-200 f2.8 HSM II and unfortunately it doesn't work well with it. The AF focus ok at 70mm, but beyond 100mm it hunts and doesn't lock focus at all. Just odd, as focus can be achieved via manual operation.
So, the Tamrom TC combined with Sigma 70-200 cannot be used in AF but if you use the combo in manual, the rest remains the same: Good IQ with sharp and contrast image.
   
Pentaxian

Registered: July, 2011
Posts: 1,724

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 13, 2014 I can recommend this lens: No | Price: $200.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: For a ong time the only TC with SDM support
Cons: Not really integrated in Pentax lineup
Camera Used: K3   

For a long time Pentax did not offer ANY TC at all, not to say with SDM support. This TC supports SDM and regular AF, so for a long time it was much cooler than any Pentax TC. The TC is not integrated in Pentax lens lineup, so whenever you switch lenses, you need to punch in a different focus correction with the TC in place. With f/4 lenses SDM is not working that well - often there is not enough light to support focussing. Image quality is OK. Most cheaper TCs are just crap, so this one is on the better side, but I would not overrate it. Not sealed against moisture.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: February, 2013
Location: Lometa, TX
Posts: 403

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 23, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $430.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, retains IQ when good glass is used
Cons: Price hard to find

I have been anxiously awaiting the TC and when I got it and got a chance to put it to work I cannot say enough how Very Happy I am with the performance of this glass ! I have used several TC's Pentax and others (not the new 1.4 Pentax) with mixed and always IQ concerns this TC is The Best I have used !! I have only used it along with good glass like the 70-200 2.8 Tammy so far so I will add more comments at a later date but from other experiences in the past I say if your going to have a TC I Highly recomend this is the one to have !
   
Pentaxian

Registered: January, 2014
Location: St Petersburg
Posts: 387

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: March 22, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: This is the one to own!
Cons: Lens Length/Zoom length EXIF not transferred...

At the cost of 1 stop, best choice for TC. Have used it with F, FA, FA* and DA* zooms and FA*300 2.8.

Minimal IQ falloff, maybe 3-5% less contrast (measured off slider in PS)... Meters well, Nice tight Fit... Will Keep it even after HD arrives, likely permanent kit (with the 2x TM PZ MC7) with my FA* 300mm 2.8.

Find it cheaper than I paid, but worth $250 anyway.
   
Senior Member

Registered: May, 2011
Location: Herefordshire, UK
Posts: 197

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 23, 2014 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $270.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, convenient, allows auto focus
Cons: Expensive

It's not perfect and I don't think any teleconverter ever can be - but I have found no noticeable loss of image quality, and the auto focus works pretty well when you have a reasonable amount of light. It works well with my DA* lenses, and the Sigma 70-200.

I had a Kenko 1.5x teleconverter once and never really had satisfactory results with it. Despite what some people say about them being the same, I have found the Tamron performs much better.

The only real problem I have with it is the price, but at the end of the day it just reflects what people are prepared to pay for a quality item in an open market.

I can't imagine anybody coming up with a better one, so for that reason I give it top marks when rated against other teleconverters.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: July, 2009
Location: Mount Joy, PA
Posts: 542

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 15, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $295.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Extremely sharp for a Teleconverter, SDM function
Cons: Expensive

I agree with the other reviewers on the sharpness of this teleconverter. Third-party teleconverters really don't get any better than the Tamron. I have owned both the 1.4x Pz-AF and 2x Pz-AF BBAR converters. Both are very good, but the 1.4x is measurably better than the 2x.

I used this teleconverter on my K-5 II with both the Pentax-DA L 55-300mm F4-5.8 ED and DA* 50-135 F2.8 ED SDM with good results. My first experience was with the 55-300mm lens in overcast weather, late in the day. The lens focused a good deal slower than usual and there was a bit more of the focusing "buzz" associated with screw-drive lenses, but the results were everything I hoped for - sharp and decent contrast. Any chromatic aberrations I detected were no more apparent than usual for that lens.

In the case of the 50-135mm lens, the results were much the same - very good sharpness and contrast. I can't say I noticed a difference in focusing speed. The SDM auto focus is nearly silent because of the electrical contacts in the lens, so there was no change in volume when using the DA*. The extra buzz with the other lens is likely due to the converter's build/acoustics, but that's to be expected with screw-drive AF. The converter is very well built - reassuringly solid.

One last note: As I said, I used the 1.4x Pz-AF with my K-5 II. I suspect the improved K-5 II auto focus sensor will yield better results in dim light with this converter than older bodies. My first test was under cloudy, late day conditions. The AF did hunt a little bit, especially as the hour got later, and I blame the hunting mainly on the environmental conditions. The 55-300mm is a "budget" lens, albeit a very good one. Nevertheless, at its longest focal length it's largest aperture is f/5.8. This is less than ideal for a teleconverter. The typical threshold for a teleconverter to work well is f/4. That said, this Tamron converter seems to work well with most lenses, and gives better results than cheaper converters.

Being one of the better converters in terms of performance I give it high marks. However its high cost and rarity diminishes the rating. I'd say anywhere between "8" and "9" is appropriate, depending on the price.
   
New Member

Registered: December, 2012
Location: Moscow
Posts: 13

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 29, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, minimize IQ loss, can be used with any AF lens (SDM or screw)
Cons: Extremely hard to find new, real expensive

Astonishing converter.
I took it after reading several reviews, including this thread. I can only reaffirm previous members - this one will provide overhelming result! I found it better than Kenko AF-PZ 1.5x SHQ. Of course, you will need a good optics for it ;-)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/ctax/8623094047/ - done by FA*300 + this thing.
   
Inactive Account

Registered: July, 2013
Posts: 1

2 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 24, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $232.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: sharp, very good IQ. Works well with screwdrive lenses
Cons: works not well with SDM lenses

Bought this converter for using it with the DA* 300mm F 4.0 ED/IF SDM.
I bought is secondhand for 175 euros. In the netherlands it is not possible to buy this lens new at this moment.
The lens hunts en only sometimes locked and also other SDM Lenses had de same problem with my copy of the Tamron-F 1.4X Pz-AF MC4.

By screwdrive lenses as the FA* 300mm F 4.5 ED/IF its works verry well (on AutoFocus) and the IQ is very good here.
It make sharp pictures and the briljance of the lens is not less than without using the converter.
So it is possible now to have a 420mm and that is what i am using this object.
i AM glad i haven't sold mij old FA* 300mm F 4.5 ED/IF.

i gues pentax at this moment don't make a converter becouse of the same problems with SDM.
But i hope they come out with it without these problems.
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