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Old Jan 10, 2012, 9:41 AM   #31
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I think if you want a camera that can do everything on a budget then go with a bridge camera or maybe a 4/3. If you want to use an SLR on a budget then specialise and get a very limited zoom (the kit 18-55 is fine) or a decent prime (I love my 35/1.8 for indoor natural light photos). The long end on an SLR is expensive for any sort of quality - I've got the cheap Tamron 70-300 and it was a waste of time and money. If I want that sort of reach now I'll take my FZ38, maybe with a teleconvertor which gives me better, sharper photos than the Tamron and an equivalent reach of over 800mm
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Old Jan 10, 2012, 12:33 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by pboerger View Post
Overall, the reviews for the Tamron 18-200 are quite positive.
And for the new 18-270mm, the reviews are even better.
Yup, I've decided to go with that lens!

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they are absolutely deaf to two thoughts and cannot hear otherwise.
YES, they are!
They think everybody is (or should be) an obssessive pixel-peeper and that you should throw away a couple of months' salary on a piece of glass!

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then specialise and get a very limited zoom
I mentioned on the other page I want versatility and also to avoid lens swapping!
I've looked at plenty of reviews of the Tamron 18-270mm and it's exactly what I'm looking for, albeit it's a bit expensive, but totally worth the money!
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Last edited by Marawder; Jan 10, 2012 at 12:38 PM.
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Old Jan 10, 2012, 2:34 PM   #33
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Dyxum.com is an excellent source of information about lenses for an A35. If you go there, and on the right side, select the manufacturer of Sony, and set the sort order to review score, you'll find a list of current Sony lenses in order by how highly the members of Dyxum.com thought of them. Third from the bottom of that list is the 18-200. Do the same thing for either Tamron or Minolta, and you'll see similar results.
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Originally Posted by pboerger View Post
Overall, the reviews for the Tamron 18-200 are quite positive. I researched and found the following.

Amazon: For Canon 146 reviews 61 five star, 36 four stars, 23 three star. For Sony 27 reviews 13 five star 14 four star. Nothing below four stars.
SLR Gear: 7 reviews, 6 recommended the lens
B&H Camera Store: Several hundred reviews. Nikon average 4.4 stars, Canon 4.3 average, Pentax 4.4, Sony 4.4 average. For one star "I hate this lens" only 1 Sony, 0 Pentax, 3 Nikon, 2 Canon.

The vast majority for all sites was four and five stars. This is not the terrible lens being described above.
... until you start comparing it to other lenses.
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Old Jan 10, 2012, 3:03 PM   #34
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lens system camera can get expensive. But you really need to match a good lens to take advantage of the larger and high resolution sensor. The 18-270 is one of the best megazoom out there. And if you do not go with the PZ motor, you can save a little bit of money. It just AF a little slower, but for what you are shooting it is not a big deal.

As a student, go with allot of peanut butter and jelly sandwich with toast bread. It is worth getting the better lens with the A35. And research the best way to clean the mirror, it seems very delicate with all I have read. Sensor cleaning is easy. Invest in a good rocket blower. It is good for quick cleaning. Avoid compress air.
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Old Jan 10, 2012, 6:14 PM   #35
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The long end on an SLR is expensive for any sort of quality - I've got the cheap Tamron 70-300 and it was a waste of time and money. If I want that sort of reach now I'll take my FZ38, maybe with a teleconvertor which gives me better, sharper photos than the Tamron and an equivalent reach of over 800mm
None of the budget lenses are very good on their longer end. Even the Tamron 18-270mm being discussed (which is one of the better all-in-one lenses) is going to be soft at 200mm or longer on a newer dSLR model using a higher resolution sensor. Basically, if you want larger viewing or print sizes, don't expect to use it on it's longer end. Basically, you're getting an OK 18-150mm lens that happens to be usable at longer focal lengths in a "pinch" (or if you don't need larger viewing/print sizes), provided you use it stopped down some.

But, it's still much better than the 18-200mm, which is gong to be soft at virtually all focal lengths when used with a 16MP Sensor when looking a full size images, even when the aperture is stopped down some (other than perhaps the very center of the image at some focal lengths). I've spent some time viewing albums full of images from that lens on Sony camera swith 14MP sensors, and they're all soft when looking at full resolution images (and I'd expect them to be softer on a higher resolution 16MP sensor). On a lower resolution model, you may find it to be OK if you don't care about the corners. But, on higher resolution sensors, it's just not going to be a good choice if you want to get the most out of your camera.

Of course, you're welcome to disagree. But, that's my opinion of it after looking at lots of images.

But, image quality is subjective, and if you don't care about anything other than web size images, you may be fine with that kind of lens. Just don't expect to see what you'd get with a better lens or lenses (even the inexpensive 2 lens kit with the 18-55mm and 55-200mm from Sony is going to produce much better results). In other words, you're wasting a lot of the sensor's resolution using optics like that on a model like the A35 in return for the convenience of an "all in one' lens design.

Martin:

How's the used market in the U.K. for Minolta AF lenses?

If you want a lens with better than average quality at a lower price on it's longer end, you may want to see what you can find a used Minolta 100-300mm f/4.5-5.6 APO (D) AF lens for. It's actually sharper on it's 300mm end compared to shorter focal lengths (very unusual design, as most budget zoom lenses are softer on their longer end). You can pick one up for around $300 on the used market in the U.S. (and I see some U.S. Vendors that have it listed for around 200 and ship to the U.K. via USPS International Priority Mail for a nominal fee). For some reason, Sony didn't carry over that lens design to it's lineup when it bought Konica Minolta, even though it's a much sharper lens compared to the 75-300mm they did rebrand (which is a very low quality lens in comparison). But, they're not that rare, and you see them listed on the used market and can still find them at good prices.

Just make sure you buy the APO version of it (as the non APO version is not a very good lens), and I'd lean towards the latest APO (D) version of it to get the latest EEPROM and lens coatings for best results.
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Old Jan 10, 2012, 9:23 PM   #36
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That's not a great idea (buying a Tamron 18-200mm for use with that Sony model).

That's probably one of the least desirable all-in-one lenses you can find. It's cheaper than most similar models for a reason. ;-)

On a lower resolution camera model (i.e., one of the 6MP cameras that were around when the Konica Minolta and Tamron 18-200mm lenses were first introduced), it might have made an OK travel lens, provided you didn't mind the barrel distortion, slow Autofocus in less than optimum lighting, and needing to stop down the aperture some to get around some of the lens softness (especially in the corners).

But, with a higher resolution camera, it's weaknesses are going to be more obvious, since it's just not going to resolve enough line pairs/mm to get good sharpness with today's sensors.

If you really want an all in one type lens solution, look at the Sony or Tamron 18-250mm instead. The 18-250mm has much better optical quality compared to the older 18-200mm design (from Sony, Konica Minolta or Tamron, which shared the same optical design). The newer Sony or Tamron 18-250mm lenses are still not going to be as good as having more than one lens to cover the same focal range. But, the 18-250mm would be better than the 18-200mm lens.

Basically, you'd be better off with any of the other similar lenses compared to the Konica Minolta, Tamron or Sony 18-200mm.

IOW, I'd look at the Tamron or Sony 18-250mm, newer Tamron 18-270mm, or newer Sigma 18-250mm HSM OS lens if you really want an all-in-one lens. Any of those are going to have better image quality compared to the Tamron 18-200mm you're thinking about.

But, for even better image quality, stick with more than one lens to cover the same focal range. For example, go with a 2 lens kit that includes the Sony 18-55mm and 55-200mm lenses with it.

Sure, it can be nice to have the convenience of one lens to cover that much focal range (despite the compromises you'll make in image quality compared to separate lenses to cover the same range). But, I'd at least look at one with better image quality compared to the Tamron 18-200mm (it's not a very good lens choice). It's optical design produced substandard images using it on the 6 Megapixel camera models that were mainstream when that lens type was first introduced (with lots of barrel distortion on it's wider end, lots of corner softness unless you stop down the aperture, high CA); and it's optical deficiencies are going to be even more apparent trying to use it on a higher resolution camera model.
What Jim just said hes one of the top experts here at the board and never given me bad advice so I'd get the ens he says to get and let me add I use a Sigma 18-250 on the Pentax K-5 and its a great lens

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Old Jan 11, 2012, 6:15 AM   #37
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hes one of the top experts here
I've never questioned his expertise!
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Old Jan 11, 2012, 11:15 AM   #38
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They think everybody is (or should be) an obssessive pixel-peeper and that you should throw away a couple of months' salary on a piece of glass!

I mentioned on the other page I want versatility and also to avoid lens swapping!
I've looked at plenty of reviews of the Tamron 18-270mm and it's exactly what I'm looking for, albeit it's a bit expensive, but totally worth the money!
We're not trying to get you to throw away a couple of months' salary on a piece of glass!

We're trying to keep you from throwing away a couple of months' salary on a piece of glass!

This isn't about money. If it were, you should be checking out the used market for lenses, even 18-2X0 lenses.

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I've never questioned his expertise!
True. You're just disregarding it.

The A35 is a very good camera. One important feature of the A35, and cameras like it, is its flexibility and versatility. An important part of that is the ability to use lenses that are specifically designed to do what you want. It seems you want to sacrifice all that by saddling it with an expensive jack-of-all-trades-and-master-of-none lens, instead of rejoicing and celebrating its versatility with multiple inexpensive lenses widely available on the used market.

This isn't about dust. If it were, you should be checking out cameras like the Sony HX100V (which, btw, will save you a couple of months' salary.)

If you're worried about getting dust on the mirror or sensor, you should stay away from zoom lenses, especially long zoom lenses. Zoom lenses change their focal length by shifting optical elements within the lens barrel. That shifting requires the displacement of air which causes air to be sucked in and vented out during normal operation. That results in dust being drawn into the lens and being ejected out, sometimes out the back of the lens and into the camera body. You are probably just as likely to get dust on the mirror or sensor using a superzoom lens as you might be by occasionally swapping lenses.

And you seem willing accept lower image quality while swapping one cause of dust in the camera body for another.

We understand that; we're just not certain you do.
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Last edited by TCav; Jan 11, 2012 at 12:17 PM.
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Old Jan 11, 2012, 1:51 PM   #39
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also oil spots can happen from the lub from the shutter. That is more annoying to clean then dust. On pns this shutter lubs builds up and became sensor crud. Which signal the end of the life cycle of the camera.

With a lens system camera, you clean and avoid discarding the camera like a pns.
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Old Jan 11, 2012, 5:06 PM   #40
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...
Your condescending and sarcastic tone simply don't impress me.
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