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Old Jun 29, 2009, 12:01 PM   #1
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Default which lens ?

I am selling my motorbike soon and will have a couple of hundred pounds to put towards my camera setup i would like a cheapish long lens and i have been looking at the Opteka lenses, now for the money i'm not epecting them to be world class but i would imagine they will be fine to get me started, there are a few i have seen and liked but these are the ones i'm interested in
Opteka 500mm f/8 High Definition Preset Telephoto
Opteka 500mm f/8 High Definition Telephoto Mirror Lens
Opteka 500mm f/6.3 High Definition Telephoto Mirror Lens
Opteka 420-800mm High Definition II Super Telephoto Zoom Lens
Opteka 800mm f/8 High Definition Telephoto Mirror Lens
or possibly
Opteka 650-1300mm High Definition Telephoto Lens
all long and slightly different, i have looked at s/h minolta lenses as well namely
Minolta AF75-300/4.5-5.6 ii
Tamron 70-300 mm F4-5.6 Di LD Macro 1:2
Minolta AF 75-300 F4.5-5.6 D
Minolta 100-300mm 4.5-5.6 AF
Sigma 28-300mm Zoom lens f3.5-6.3
Minolta AF 75-300mm f/4.5-5.6
SIGMA AF 100-300 DL !!! 1:4.5-6.7
Then again new are these
Rokinon 500mm ultra-telephoto f/6.3
There are quite a few Rokinon lenses and similar range to the Opteka higher up, I believe Rokinon was Ricoh originaly whi if I remember correctly made some half decent stuff. The thing with rokinon, opteka etc is that they are all brand new and come with a full guarentee which is handy, and also with the correct mount for the Sony A300 I have, so what do you think I should go for chaps ? I can possibly have 2 lenses depending on how much they cost, so i was going to get a long lens and poss a zoom of around 18 - 80mm or some thing like that. all your thought's would be appreciated thanks.
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Old Jun 29, 2009, 12:27 PM   #2
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If you go with a Minolta 100-300mm AF lens, make sure to get an APO version. I'd probably get the latest APO (D) version of it for the most up to date lens coatings and electronics. There are reasons the APO versions tend to sell for several times as much as the non APO versions. They have better optical quality, including better control of CA (Chromatic Aberrations), compared to the non APO Versions of it..

That would be my first choice from the lenses in your list (as long as you get an APO version of the Minolta AF 100-300mm).

After that, I'd probably go to the inexpensive Tamron 70-300mm that's in your list (making sure to get the latest version of it).
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Old Jun 29, 2009, 12:53 PM   #3
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The Opteka lenses are all T-Mount lenses, so they won't autofocus and don't support autoexposure; they'll only work in M Mode. The 420-800mm and 650-1300mm are very long refractive lenses that are soft and have a lot of chromatic aberation. The others are catadioptric lenses which are small, light, inexpensive, and a reasonably good value within the restrictions of the T-Mount. The Opteka and Rokinon lenses are all made by a single company (arguments abound as to who) and are also available under the brand names Vivitar, Phoenix and ProMaster, among others.

The Minolta 75-300 lenses are optically identical to the current Sony 75-300, which is to say, not very good. The Tamron 70-300 Di LD is a much better choice. The Sigma lenses you've mentioned aren't as good, and neither is the Minolta 100-300 unless you're talking about the APO version which is quite nice. The Sigma 70-300 APO is also a nice lens, but it has a history of stripping it's autofocus gears when mounted on newer Sony dSLRs.

I think your best bet is the Tamron 70-300 Di LD, unless you're willing to put up with the T-Mount for the catadioptric lenses.

As for a replacement for the kit lens, the Sigma 17-70/2.8-4.5 is quite good and quite reasonable.
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Old Jun 29, 2009, 12:53 PM   #4
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I will also say that the original Minolta 75-300, the 'Big Beercan', is quite good, and has been selling on eBay for less that $200 lately.

Yes, the 'Big Beercan' is selling for less than the 'Beercan'.
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Old Jun 29, 2009, 2:53 PM   #5
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Just to say that I really wouldn't suggest the Opteka lenses, yes they are very tempting but there is a reason they are not expensive.

Good glass on a cheap body will give lovely results but cheap glass even on the best bodies will not do well at all.
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Old Jun 30, 2009, 6:33 AM   #6
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hmmm yes i suppose so, maybe the tamron 70-300 plus a 2x converter is the best way to get the long lens i need, i was told that the cat lenses where ok so the idea was a cheap 500mm cat and then a better quality 18- ? whatever for most of my other stuff
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Old Jun 30, 2009, 7:13 AM   #7
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A 2x TC on a 70-300 is also going to give pretty poor results, the results from most 70-300s are acceptable at 300mm but once you start putting TCs on they go down pretty quickly. Back in the day I used to have a Tamron 70-300 and tried it with a 1.4 and 2 x TC and the results were poor. I learnt over the years that there is no way to get around having good glass.

What are you wanting to shoot that needs such lengths?
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Old Jun 30, 2009, 7:36 AM   #8
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The Tamron 70-300 Di LD is a good, inexpensive lens. It's not a great lens; it's a good lens. It has flaws. When you hang a lens on a teleconverter, even the best teleconverter will, at the very least, magnify the flaws. Unfortunately, teleconverters will also introduce their own set of flaws.

You can try a Tamron 70-300 Di LD with a Kenko AF 2X Teleplus MC7 Teleconverter and see what happens, but it won't autofocus and the viewfinder will be pretty dim, so you might get better results with one of the T-Mount catadioptric lenses in M Mode. But you can't zoom.

You want a long lens on the cheap, and that's going to cost you somewhere else.
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Old Jun 30, 2009, 8:31 AM   #9
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BTW, a Vivitar 500mm f/8 catadioprtic lens doesn't cost a lot more than a 2X Teleconverter. You could buy a Tamron 70-300 Di LD and a 500/8 mirror lens for about the same price as a Tamron 70-300 Di LD and a 2X TC, and you'll probably get better results.
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Old Jun 30, 2009, 3:25 PM   #10
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ok i will look at the vivitar lenses then, as i said i accept that my choices won't be the best but for what i wan't and more to the point what i can afford then they will do thanks for the advice though, when i wanted my first dslr i asked for advice and no one recomended sony, nikon and canon where all i got, but i new i couldn't afford the V lenses so i bought a sony, it seems that most of the s/h lenses on ebay at the moment are a bit overpriced
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