55-300


benwood08

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 11:17
Hi, i am looking to purchase a new lens for my k30 and wondered if anyone knew if the Pentax 55-300 was worth the additional cash over the Tamron or Sigma versions? Also any ideas on where to get the best deal? i have seen Jessops online are doing the Pentax for around 239 at the moment.

Thanks,
Ben

davidstorm

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 11:21
Hi Ben, you already have a Forum thread open on the same subject which I posted a reply on yesterday. It's probably best not to have two different threads running on the same subject!

The 55-300 is the best lens in its class and worth spending more to obtain. You might want to have a look at the DA L version with a plastic lens mount and no 'quick shift' focussing; this is a good deal cheaper and is identical optically to the DA version. There's no need to worry about a plastic mount, they are robust and wear well.

Regards
David
My Website http://imagesbydavidstorm.foliopic.com

Flickr

Some cameras, some lenses, some bits 'n' bobs

johnriley

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 11:24
The short answer is yes it is worth it. It's a better lens at a very reasonable price. Buy the DA version by preference and you get metal mount, QuickShift and a lens hood. Buy the DA-L version and you get plastic mount and not the other two features, but it is optically identical and a lower price.

Forum Favourite for purchases is SRS Microsystems. Forum members get free shipping, but you need to tell them your username. If ordered online, mention it in the text box and they will deduct it before they actually debit your card.

Other sources that can offer good prices are Park Cameras and Amazon.
Best regards, John

Helpful

Russ

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 11:31
Watch the classifieds on this forum, the 55-300 comes up quite regularly and will save you a good 80-100 over the new price. Let someone else take the hit in the wallet.

Algernon

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 11:35
How do you know it's identical optically? Traditionally cheaper
lenses use cheaper glass and coatings even though the diagrams
look the same.

Go for the DA version, it's worth it just for the Quickshift.

--
Half Man... Half Pentax ... Half Cucumber

Pentax K-1 + K-5 and some other stuff

Algi

benwood08

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 11:41
Thanks for the info guys, appologies for the double post (just trying to cover as many opinions as possible). i cant seem to find a DA-L other than on Ebay which i am always a bit wary off. The price from Jessops seems to be reasonable compared to other places so i think i will see if her indoors will notice the change in the bank balance!

Cheers,
Ben

stub

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 11:44
Having both versions I would recommend the Dal version as best value. Great image quality for a budget lens. Drawbacks. Slow to focus on moving objects and can hunt a little. Check SRS or Amazon for best prices new. Classifieds here for second user bargains..
K-1Gripped K-1 ungripped K-5ii K7 Various lenses

Stuart..

johnriley

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 12:04
Algi, as regards the info mentioned I absorbed it, remembered it, but the source has long gone into the oblivion of useless information. Obviously it was a reputable source, otherwise I wouldn't have remembered it.

Stuart, don't forget the DA version has that very expensive lens hood included, an absolute necessity for telephoto lenses if we are to get the best out of them.
Best regards, John

DrOrloff

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 12:44
Good lens definitely worth the extra. Definitely go for the DA version. The lack of quick shift is a real drawback to the DA-L version. A lens hood is a necessity in my book too. 239 is a good price.
You can see some of my photos here if you are so inclined

DrOrloff

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 12:46
Having said that the one in the classifieds that I spotted after writing this looks the one to go for. I wouldn't hesitate.
You can see some of my photos here if you are so inclined

dpm

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 13:06
I've a DA-L for sale currently if you're interested

https://www.pentaxuser.com/forum/topic/fs--55-300-da-l-40475/p-1

davidstorm

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 15:26
Algernon wrote:
How do you know it's identical optically? Traditionally cheaper
lenses use cheaper glass and coatings even though the diagrams
look the same.

Go for the DA version, it's worth it just for the Quickshift.

--

It is optically identical, just like the DA L 18-55 is optically identical to the DA 18-55WR. Coatings, glass and optical arrangement are exactly the same.

DrOrloff wrote:
Good lens definitely worth the extra. Definitely go for the DA version. The lack of quick shift is a real drawback to the DA-L version. A lens hood is a necessity in my book too. 239 is a good price.

I've never used the quickshift on any of my lenses! It is probably more use on the 55-300 than most of the others, but having said that I find the focussing is excellent on the newer K-5II bodies and I can't say I feel the need for quickshift with mine. Regarding the hood, they cost about 4 from ebay for a Chinese copy that does exactly the same job as the Pentax ones.

I'm not trying to dissuade you from buying the DA version as this one is better for having the features the DA L doesn't, but it will make no difference to the image quality.

Regards
David
My Website http://imagesbydavidstorm.foliopic.com

Flickr

Some cameras, some lenses, some bits 'n' bobs
Last Edited by davidstorm on 26/08/2013 - 15:27

PJMcKenna

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 15:52
Having had both the Tamron 70-300 and Sigma 70-300 APO, I found the DA 55-300 to be way, way better than either of the third party offerings. I bought the DA version with hood, metal mount and quick-shift and have to say it's a lens that punches very firmly above its weight. It's easily one of the best lenses for the money that I've ever bought, indeed, I'd say it's one of the best lenses I've ever had.
Cheers Paul

Pentax K5, DA 18-55 WR, DA 18-135 WR, DA 55-300 ED, DA 35 f2.8 Macro Limited, A 50 f1.7, DA 50 f1.8
Samsung GX10, D-Xenon 18-55, SEF-36PZF Flash
Sigma 10-20 EX DC f4-5.6

Helpful

DrOrloff

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 15:55
I got a JJC one for around a tenner, maybe a little more at the time. It seems there are plenty around for tuppence ha'penny now. Quickshift is useful for a sparrow amongst twigs, since the camera can focus roughly in the right place but it doesn't know whether you are photographing the sparrow or the twig, so you can use quickshift to get from the twig to the sparrow. Makes no difference if you go fully mf of course.
You can see some of my photos here if you are so inclined

stub

Link Posted 26/08/2013 - 16:47
Quote:
Stuart, don't forget the DA version has that very expensive lens hood included, an absolute necessity for telephoto lenses if we are to get the best out of them.

Thanks John. I considered the hood a little insignificant, as For my Dal 55-300 I purchased a re engineered one from ebay for 3.99 and its exactly the same as the one from my DA 55-300. With the exception of the Pentax logo.

In over two years of owning the DA, I have never used quick shift at all. And though I have to admit that personally I prefer the metal mounts. The plastic mount on the Dal has been trouble free, and makes for a lighter lens. The main point at the end of the day is that when comparing image quality, for the two lenses. "IT IS EXACTLY THE SAME" So yah pays yer money and opts for what takes yah fancy.... understanding that the final outcome will be the same.
K-1Gripped K-1 ungripped K-5ii K7 Various lenses

Stuart..
Last Edited by stub on 26/08/2013 - 16:56
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