Lens Advice/Question

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Alan Ellis, Jun 18, 2008.

  1. Alan Ellis

    Alan Ellis TPF Noob!

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    Hey all...

    Second post and looking forward to more. I'm a fairly new DSLR user so I'm hoping to learn a few things from all you experts.

    Anyway, my Sony A-200 came with a 18-70mm lens. I'm looking for a bigger telephoto and was looking at a 75-300mm. I found this Tamron for $109.00. Is this a good deal and is Tameron a good lens brand?:
    http://sigma4less.com/Product.aspx?ProdID=1571

    Thanks for the help and advice.

    AE
     
  2. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Tamron is one of the major manufacturers of third-party lenses; yes, overall they are good lenses. I've not had experience with this particular one, so I can't comment on it, but at that price, I would suggest that it's probably part of their economy line, and not likely to have the best optical performance. I would try searching the 'net for reviews of it and see what sort of information you get in response.
     
  3. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I would very strongly advise going into a store and trying a lens like that out. I say this because cheap telephoto lenses are cheap for a reason and sometimes whilst you are getting a good focal range you won't be getting what you think.
    My experiences with these lenses is that they tend to be soft at 300mm end and also don't have a huge reach (it depends what you photograph, but from my own work with wildlife I don't trust my sigma beyond about 6m from camera to subject and that is with a tripod attached).
    Personally I would recomend looking at this lens:
    http://www.amazon.com/Sigma-70-300m...1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1213794093&sr=8-1
    I know it costs double the lens you have linked, but I feel that a lens like this is a "training" lens. You can get a feel for a lot of differnet work and with some practise (and a tripod!) you can get some very good results and also see where you might want to invest more in a lens later. The sigma will let you have a go at macro as well.

    Sigma and Tameron are 3rd party and both companise can make some very good lenses at the higher end of the market, but both also tend to make slightly weaker cheap end lenses. That is a very broad generalization, but I feel its generaly a resonable assessment - after using a cheap end sigma and seeing for myself its shortcommings I still have no problem recegnising that they do make high end lenses and I have no problem with using them (I hope to get a sigma dedicated macro lens - the 150mm)
     
  4. Alan Ellis

    Alan Ellis TPF Noob!

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  5. Alan Ellis

    Alan Ellis TPF Noob!

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    Edit:

    Oops....double post.
     
  6. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Ahh no that is a different sigma lens - there are 2 versions of the same lens.
    The first is the one you linked to, whilst the second is the one in my link - with APO in the name and a red ring on the lens. It means that sigma used APO (a special glass coating) to impove the overall quality of photos you can get from it. Its still a budget lens, but my personaly opinion is that it is worth the extra to get it with the APO glass.
    here
    http://www.amazon.com/Sigma-70-300m...1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1213795738&sr=1-1
    this time a proper sony link :)
     
  7. Alan Ellis

    Alan Ellis TPF Noob!

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    Ahhh....grasshoppa is now enlightened. :) APO? So many things to learn.

    I'll probably order that lens. Thanks for the help and advice.

    AE
     
  8. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Any idea where you are going with the camera - that is to say are there any specific things that you really really want to be able to photograph?
    That is really the best way to approach getting a new lens
     
  9. Village Idiot

    Village Idiot No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I find that most but not all 70-300 range lenses are a bit cheap and usually soft at some point in the range or across the whole range. They're not all horrible and you can fix softness in processing if you have too. Some suffer from other faults. One I've seen used had CA that was so bad that any white that showed up on this picture of water was purple.

    You really get what you pay for and when you see a lens for $550 that's 70-200 f/4 vs. a 70-300 f/4-f/5.6 for $100-$150, you have to have to wonder why a lens is that cheap.

    It's rare, but there's a few exceptional values for that price range, but it really does come down to "you get what you pay for" when purchasing lenses. Don't let that discourage you though, just make sure you do your research and find the best lens you can for what your budget it.
     
  10. Alan Ellis

    Alan Ellis TPF Noob!

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    90% of my photos are outdoors. You can check out my website and see some of our trips and photos. http://www.JackieandAlan.com
     
  11. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Somehow I think the DSLR might get left behind on those climbing trips ;)
    But looking at what you tend to shoot a lot I wonder if a wide angle lens (for panorama shots) might be more suitable. Unless this one is to get those most zoomed shots (the odd rabbit ;))
     
  12. Alan Ellis

    Alan Ellis TPF Noob!

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    The DSLR may be left behind on the hard technical climbs, but it really depends on how long the climb, how long the approach, and how much other gear we gotta carry. Otherwise, a lot of the trips are scrambles or walk-up peaks where the DSLR will be ok.

    Can you recommend a size/type of wide-angle lens for panos? thanks.

    AE
     

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