300 mm recommendations

russell

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Dec 28, 2010
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Victoria, Australia
Does anyone have any recommendations for inexpensive adaptable lenses of around 300 mm focal length?

I have seen some good recommendations for 70-200 or 210 zooms but seeing I already have an OMZ 135/3.5, something like a 150-300mm would be good. I would like to try my hand at wildlife photography so a prime would also be worth considering if it is signicantly faster.
 

leuallen

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Mar 26, 2010
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Mackinaw, Il
Tokina ATX 100-300m F4.0 is nice. In fact so nice that I have two, one for backup. I use this lens alot. Not too expensive. The first one I got was about $175, the second about $80 (reason I got it).

I also have a Nikor 300mm f4.5 ED IF. It is a bit sharper than the Tokina but not as versatile. Also more expensive, about $250.

Here is an image from the Tokina at close to 300mm, f5.6. The image could be sharper but the shutter speed was only 1/160th on a monopod. This is slow for that focal length.

Larry
 

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Michael

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Perth, Western Australia
The Vivitar 200mm lens on a Canon FD Mount is a good one and can be had for as little as $ 35.00. plus an adaptor...

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aeonium arboreum
Olympus Pen EP-2 f5.6 1/160s ISO200 Canon FD Vivitar 200mm lens.
 

leuallen

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Sorry for late reply, but computer out of commission for a couple of days.

Shot was at least 5.6, maybe 8.0 but not more.

I generally shoot at 5.6-8.0 so 4.0 doesn't worry me.

Larry
 

deirdre

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Aug 9, 2010
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Does anyone have any recommendations for inexpensive adaptable lenses of around 300 mm focal length?
I picked up a Leica (no, wait, stay with me) Hektor 135mm on eBay. It's from 1959, has a max aperture of f/4.5.

Here's a 100% crop of this lens on a Leica M8, where it's effectively a 180mm lens. I really love the detail, though obviously I was shooting under suboptimal conditions. On µ4/3, this would be a 270mm lens.

View attachment 155619

Best part: picked it up for $90 plus shipping. Venerable old lens with great detail.
 

xyzzy

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Sep 15, 2010
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Sankt Gallen, Switzerland
I am not sure what would qualify as inexpensive. I have a Zeiss Jena Sonnar 300/4 which I got for a very good price, under 200€ shipped, although I have the impression they are much more expensive overseas. Attention: these are the ones made for the P6 medium format camera (not the west german Zeiss for Contax!). Disadvantage: big, heavy. But very good image quality.
 

russell

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Dec 28, 2010
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Victoria, Australia
Thanks. By inexpensive, I probably mean around half that. For example I am thinking of things like the Nikkor 100-300mm f/5.6 AIS at around $150, or the Tokina 100-300mm f/5.6 at around $70. Just searching for "300mm" in the B&H used section, there's also a Canon model like that, around the same price used too and Konica Minoltas around $130.. not sure what they're like (?). Too many options!!
 

RDM

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Jan 6, 2011
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Orange County, New York
Shared frustration

I too am looking for relatively inexpensive but fast telephoto primes or maybe Zooms.
Unfortunately I have to stay in the Minolta MD mount range as i still do lots of film work and all my film cameras are Minolta MD mounts. It just makes more sense to buy a lens i can use on my film camera as well as adapted to digital.
I had thought i found the answer with a long telephoto zoom.
Unfortunately due to my internet being out and the snow storm happening last week, i missed out on an auction for a 120-600mm f/5.6-8 zoom. It was a good looking zoom too, with a rotating tripod mount that locks. I had put in a bid of a hundred when it was only at twenty six a few days before it ended. It ended up going for just over a hundred dollars; I hate snipers. I find it elsewhere for sale now for about three hundred. Darn my luck!
 

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Mellow

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Tom
I picked up a 300mm cheapo mirror lens ("Haminex", f/5.6) for $40 at a pawn shop and have been playing with it past week. Today I went out and did some comparisons with my Olympus 4/3 70-300mm lens at 300mm. Now I know the Oly isn't all that great at f/5.6, but I thought there would be a larger difference between the two. In fact, as long as I nail the focus on the mirror the difference isn't all that great.

The mirror has much less contrast, so I wouldn't advise shooting straight OOC JPGs. But if you're willing to tinker a little bit in LR or whatever you can boost the contrast and get perfectly acceptable images. More than acceptable, as a matter of fact.

To be honest, I'm seriously thinking of selling the 70-300mm because I like the mirror that much. It's WAAAAAAAAAAAAY lighter, smaller, and more in line with what I think m43 is all about. It also produces goofy 'donut' bokeh, but that doesn't bother me that much and at any rate you can often avoid it.

Just another option, and certainly one that qualifies as 'cheap'!
 

Narnian

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Aug 6, 2010
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Richmond, VA
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Richard Elliott
I have a Tele-Takumar 300/6.3 as well and find it a fun lens. Nice for packing light when I don't want to lug around my 300/4.5 Nikkor.

I picked up a 400/5.6 Tokina (MD Minolta mount) and the first few shots look promising. It is almost the same length as the 300/4.5 Nikkor! Only 3 mm longer.

The good news is that 300mm to 400mm fixed focal length lenses are fairly simple designs and I have seen few bad ones.

Zooms, on the other hand, will be a very mixed bag, especially older ones.
 
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