Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

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bfitzgerald
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Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Mon Apr 22, 2019 12:25 pm

Considering options here (s/h of course)
I need something that is suited for action shots - think Marathon runners moving towards the camera for some shots
The old 70-210mm isn't the best for AF speed it can work but it's hit and miss! Well more miss than hit depending on body

So far the 18-135mm has proved good if I'm close enough to the runners I get about a 90%+ hit rate. What I need it a bit more reach
Zoom would be more useful than a prime
200mm and up 200 might do it cropping is common for this type of shooting anyway, but I might consider longer focal lengths

Options:
Minolta 80-200mm HS APO F2.8 - this seems to have a good rep for optics and AF speed never used it prices are good and it's compact so far top of the list
70-200mm SSM - They do turn up from time to time at respectable prices it's an option
70-300mm G - Again not a lens I've used any thoughts on optics or AF?
70-400mm G - First gen silver one the II version is costly, another lens I've never used the top end might be overkill but I could use it for other activities maybe. I've no idea on AF speed

If I do keep my APS-C stuff then it would be more sensible to have a FF lens but I'm open to suggestions. Performance wide open is important ie "usable"
Thanks!

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sury
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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby sury » Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:30 pm

Barry,
I have 70-400 G gen I. I love it. Very fast focus. I have used it at car races, air shows and birds in flight with 90% hit rate.
I have not used other lenses you mentioned. I held back on 70-200 range after purchasing 70-400 though I do feel an occasional itch
to acquire a 70-200 range 2.8 glass.

Sury

This is A900 + 70-400G

Image

This is A77M2 + 70-400G

Image

This is A77M2 + 70-400G
Image
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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby ValeryD » Tue Apr 23, 2019 1:40 am

So far I use almost every day Minolta 80-200mm HS APO F2.8. Can't complain about this lens. Sony 70-300 first generation slower than minolta 80-200 and not so accurate with AF. Second edition Sony 70-300 good, but Sony made this lens from one pice of the gold (by price tag). Tamron 70-300mm 2.8 USD may be good for a99, not so good for a99-2, AF system doesn't have full support from camera.
You can check how Minolta works in viewtopic.php?f=17&t=9023&start=60.
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bfitzgerald
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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Thu Apr 25, 2019 12:31 am

[quote="sury"]Barry,
I have 70-400 G gen I. I love it. Very fast focus. I have used it at car races, air shows and birds in flight with 90% hit rate.
I have not used other lenses you mentioned. I held back on 70-200 range after purchasing 70-400 though I do feel an occasional itch
to acquire a 70-200 range 2.8 glass.

Sury

I was always curious about the lens but never knew if I would use such focal length on a regular basis - but perhaps I might they do turn up from time to time at not too bad prices if the AF is up to the job that would work for what I do fairly well.

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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Thu Apr 25, 2019 12:38 am

ValeryD wrote:So far I use almost every day Minolta 80-200mm HS APO F2.8. Can't complain about this lens. Sony 70-300 first generation slower than minolta 80-200 and not so accurate with AF. Second edition Sony 70-300 good, but Sony made this lens from one pice of the gold (by price tag). Tamron 70-300mm 2.8 USD may be good for a99, not so good for a99-2, AF system doesn't have full support from camera.
You can check how Minolta works in viewtopic.php?f=17&t=9023&start=60.


The 70-300mm well was never a runner at the list price esp the II version I don't see it appealing not at that level. The Tamron equivalent is said to be good but I dislike the rendering on samples I've seen (just doesn't look good to my eyes) and I'm a bit fussy on that with some lenses.
The Minolta seems the best bang per buck for a fast zoom and the samples seem good, but is it any good at F2.8 at the long end? I might not use it wide open outside, but I would likely shoot with it wide open indoors. All the feedback I've seen is that it's said to be better than the 70-200mm SSM, but I can't say I've not used any of them

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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby ValeryD » Thu Apr 25, 2019 5:03 am

Minolta 80-200 very sharp at 2.8 from 80 to 200, but I did micro adjustment in 80mm and 200mm , some people complain about 200mm, but they use this lens for Sony cameras without micro adjustments. In my camera set for Minolta 80-200: W end -7, in T end +10, and it's sharp like "a razor".
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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby sury » Thu Apr 25, 2019 10:49 pm

bfitzgerald wrote:
sury wrote:Barry,
I have 70-400 G gen I. I love it. Very fast focus. I have used it at car races, air shows and birds in flight with 90% hit rate.
I have not used other lenses you mentioned. I held back on 70-200 range after purchasing 70-400 though I do feel an occasional itch
to acquire a 70-200 range 2.8 glass.

Sury

I was always curious about the lens but never knew if I would use such focal length on a regular basis - but perhaps I might they do turn up from time to time at not too bad prices if the AF is up to the job that would work for what I do fairly well.


Barry,
I have not found AF to be an issue most of the time. The images in the following thread in Give it your best shot are all 70-400 on A77M2.
None of the images are pre-focused.

http://www.photoclubalpha.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=9357

Here is an example of quick focus on that lens. One moment I was drinking beer with a friend and the next, instinctively my camera is to my face and I am shooting away. On A900.

Image

You can watch the whole sequence on my Flickr page.
https://flic.kr/s/aHsk2p638s
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bfitzgerald
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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Sat Apr 27, 2019 4:01 pm

sury wrote:
bfitzgerald wrote:
sury wrote:Barry,
I have 70-400 G gen I. I love it. Very fast focus. I have used it at car races, air shows and birds in flight with 90% hit rate.
I have not used other lenses you mentioned. I held back on 70-200 range after purchasing 70-400 though I do feel an occasional itch
to acquire a 70-200 range 2.8 glass.

Sury

I was always curious about the lens but never knew if I would use such focal length on a regular basis - but perhaps I might they do turn up from time to time at not too bad prices if the AF is up to the job that would work for what I do fairly well.


Barry,
I have not found AF to be an issue most of the time. The images in the following thread in Give it your best shot are all 70-400 on A77M2.
None of the images are pre-focused.

http://www.photoclubalpha.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=9357

Here is an example of quick focus on that lens. One moment I was drinking beer with a friend and the next, instinctively my camera is to my face and I am shooting away. On A900.

Image

You can watch the whole sequence on my Flickr page.
https://flic.kr/s/aHsk2p638s




Thanks Sury I will have a look through those appreciate your help

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bfitzgerald
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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Sat Apr 27, 2019 4:02 pm

ValeryD wrote:Minolta 80-200 very sharp at 2.8 from 80 to 200, but I did micro adjustment in 80mm and 200mm , some people complain about 200mm, but they use this lens for Sony cameras without micro adjustments. In my camera set for Minolta 80-200: W end -7, in T end +10, and it's sharp like "a razor".


Seems to be a common thing on lenses and user reviews I've scratched my head a few times with some (and using multiple copies of some lenses) Saying that most lenses I have don't need adjusting if it's usable wide open that's enough for me. Not so many around in Europe though seems all the good stuff is in USA or Japan ;-)

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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby ValeryD » Sun Apr 28, 2019 4:07 pm

bfitzgerald wrote:
Seems to be a common thing on lenses and user reviews I've scratched my head a few times with some (and using multiple copies of some lenses) Saying that most lenses I have don't need adjusting if it's usable wide open that's enough for me. Not so many around in Europe though seems all the good stuff is in USA or Japan ;-)


Decision, decision... :?
When we talking about old Minolta lenses it's always a lottery, You can win or lost. But I found even my old 50/1.7 after I did cleaning and put new grease on it, works perfect. Micro adjustment give me a very sharp picture from F2.0 and up and camera itself by AF use F2.2. So? I got great sharp 50mm standard lens for FF and APS-C cameras. I never can get same sharp shots on a57 as on a77-2 and specially a99-2.
Minolta 80-200 I got from Japan. I spent about 2-3 Mons on eBay to find right seller and right copy for me. Actually big thanks to Paul Nelson, he as sport photographer pointed to Minolta 80-200.
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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Fri May 03, 2019 10:10 pm

I'm in no hurry I'll keep an eye open for one import taxes take the shine off Japan a bit, but if I can find the right one I'll probably bite. I've managed to get a few lenses I didn't at the time have much interest in - but have been fairly surprised how good some are (28-105mm RS is quite impressive), and the 28m F2.8 despite mixed reviews I've found to be very good
The 50mm F1.7 I have an original version and found it usable wide open and very decent stopped down a bit, so I for the time being passed on a 50mm F1.4 (I could get unlucky and get a bad one the Zeiss looks nice but it's costly) perhaps better things to look at first. Thanks for the information

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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:03 pm

I have picked up a Minolta 80-200mm F2.8, it's coming from Germany photo dealer with warranty. Based on the serial no. it looks like a late production one in very nice condition, but it's not turned up yet. I'll let you know how it goes, I have a return if needed 14 days hopefully it's as good as it looks on the listing.
I will put the 70-400mm on the get later on list, with this I have really quite a good selection of lenses.
Did again contemplate if it is wise to stick around, but when I saw listings for FE 70-200mm's F4 used costing more than this F2.8, it convinced me native mirror less is just badly priced ;-D

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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby Fotogeorge » Thu Aug 13, 2020 7:16 pm

I have a nice selection of A-mount cameras and lenses. I'm not like the Invicta watch collectors. I don't have any of the long tele lenses that you mention in your posts, except for the Tamron 70-300 f4-5.6, which I value, but wish it was much lighter. I use it with the a65. I also have original Minolta 50mm 1.4 and 1.7. I missed shooting with a full frame camera, since I sold off my film gear. I didn't want to invest in any of the a99 variants, because of costs. I even passed on the a77ii after it was discontinued, without being sale priced. So, I bought the Sony a7iii, so I could finally use my LA-EA4 adapter, with my full frame A-mount lenses. The a7iii is a great camera. I like the bocha with the A-mount lenses. I was surprised at the light weight of the a7iii. The LA-EA4 is not great on ergonomics; it has limitations on using long tele lenses, because of weight limitations on the adapter mounts. The a7iii has 6 mount screws. Previously, the aps-c e-mount cameras had only 4 screws with warnings on putting stress on the mounts. Interesting, the A-mount cameras all had 6 mount screws. Using long lenses on the A-mount cameras wasn't a problem. I won't be using the Tamron 70-300mm A-mount lens with the adapter. I'm slowly using my A-mount full frame lenses with the adapter. The 50mm 1.4 and 1.7, 85mm 2.8, and 20mm 2.8 are good matches. They are all light weight. Most of the native FE lenses are very heavy and expensive. I wasn't able to use an aps-c Sigma E 30mm 2.8 ART lens; it was rejected by the a7iii. I don't have any E-mount full frame lenses. I'll be looking for good deals on Sony E-mount full frame lenses at KEH, especially macro lenses. I'll be using my full frame A-mount lenses, with the adapter. I'm working on using lighting. The a7iii has a steep learning curve, but I won't need all the bells and whistles. I'll still keep using my A-mount cameras, with aps-c lenses.
KM7D, Sony A350, A580, A-700, A57, A65, A5100 , a6500 , & a7iii, plus a bunch of lenses.

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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Thu Aug 13, 2020 8:19 pm

I did toy with the A7iii, at least a grey import one which is more reasonable priced (pros and cons to that take). I'm just not sure it's going to be a particularly good purchase at this time, I gain video features (which are not super important right now 1080p is fine for the videos I do make on YouTube), and evidently I lose fps shooting with the LEA4, which isn't ideal for me. If I go APS-C I lose steadyshot in all but the A6600, and at that price surely full frame is a better longer term bet.

So other than using the budget E mount body as a video camera, it doesn't really work out to me for stills. I've thought about that too, prices have shot up and in short I'm not paying over the odds for these cameras. For serious crop shooters I think E Mount is just not that viable, they have nothing to offer shooters not really at least in terms of body design (dual front/rear dials, AF joystick etc)

Then some might say using the LEA4 isn't ideal workable, but you lose out on the snazzy AF of the bodies. Aside from the work in progress hack job on the LEA4 (not sure how that will pan out long term). Some of the lenses work with the LEA3, but it's really down to Sony on this, and they've not really given A mount users a lot of reasons to switch over the E Mount, that's up to them it's quite a shame, reality is they've not done a good job for the A Mount users at all. So I'm pretty reluctant to re-invest in Sony again, I wouldn't rule it out just not viable at this time.

Brutal reality is I'm better off sticking to what I have. What gets end of life doesn't matter that much to me. A77ii not sure it's discontinued or not, lot of E Mount cameras out of stock too at this time no doubt Covid related. No I wouldn't have paid full price for the A99 or the A77ii, but I got both off Mike here for a very very reasonable price. They are different but useful in their own ways in other words good enough for what need them to do if not more. Sad reality of the camera industry is, they just lost a lot of buyers like myself. I didn't buy an A77ii new because it was poor value (for a camera released in 2014), in fact outright shameful they'd try to get almost the same price in 2020 they did back then for normal retail. Result is predictable - no sale for me

When the A99ii came along, I'm sure it's great and everything. I pretty much concluded 5 years ago that Sony were not pushing A Mount and had no real intentions of doing that, merely in "ticking over" mode. I could see the missing lenses that should have happened on A Mount turn up on E Mount (70-200mm F4, 85mm F1.8, faster wide primes etc). Was fairly obvious where things were going. The reason I stuck around was simple, bang per buck is very good on A Mount. In 10 years time I'll probably be able to buy A99's and A77ii's for peanuts on the used market. Even if I toyed with E mount the cost of lenses on the new mirrorless systems is just way too expensive. I'm not trying to put Sony down, applies to the other makers too. They priced themselves into a niche market, and with phones raging it's no wonder many people just sold off their gear and bought a decent phone. I might have done that if I were not doing some work from time to time.

This 80-200mm if it pans out is a good example of where things went wrong. I'd rather have an F2.8 lens at that range than an F4 one, SSM motor or not. It would be hugely costly to re-buy into E Mount with native lenses. perhaps less so on Tamron stuff, even there is the new 70-180mm a better lens optically than the Minolta? It's not exactly super cheap either. I don't see value for money on mirorrless at this time, perhaps an option for adapting lenses. Unless you have really deep pockets that is ;-D

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Re: Fast AF Telephoto lens suggestions?

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Wed Aug 19, 2020 1:04 pm

This looks mildly interesting
https://www.sonyalpharumors.com/sony-a5 ... qus_thread

I'm not sure about the for "vloggers" part of it. Sony do need a budget FF body, but it depends what they do with this. It might be a hit or miss going off that. I hope they don't go with the A6xxx body as it's cramped and doesn't have the front dial, we'll see soon enough.

On a side note I don't expect Sony to do anything with a new adapter, if they do it's a bonus - I just don't see it. One of my reasons for digging in even more with A Mount is fairly simple, I can get things done still with this stuff. Once the covid panic buying is over, I'd expect the s/h market for A Mount to crash even more on prices hence A99's and A77/77ii's will be around for bargain prices. Those bodies are absolutely good enough for what I do.

I may later on try E mount or likely something else, but only when prices are more realistic and I won't be investing in native lenses. An option is better than none, still it's hugely disappointing that Sony has treated their A mount users this way. As the camera market is so volatile in recent times, I wouldn't put money down on any of the makers long term is uncertain. Most of my friends I've told them to hang tight, don't invest in anyway. Most are using EOS Canon, and like me the stuff they have does what they need


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