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 Post subject: (in)sanity check
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:48 pm 
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Weather allowing I'm really looking forward to imaging the areas around Orion again soon. Snag is, what I used last time was the ancient 300mm f/2.8 which I don't have any more, and don't want to get the same again even if one turned up. I know I can use other lenses around 300mm or longer but I've lost 2 stops of speed. I think the sweet spot is 300-500mm at f/2.8 or faster. Yes, I know that's stupid money in camera lenses.

Just want to brainstorm some options.

1: use any old 300mm lens and put up with longer exposures. Only "benefit" is I don't need to buy more lenses.
2: get a 300/4 lens. One stop is better than none. But they're not that cheap and I wouldn't use it for anything else really.
3: get a 200mm f/2.8 lens and stick a teleconverter on it. This only makes sense if I'm getting the 70-200 f/2.8L IS II for later use on a full frame body I don't have. I can't afford it anyway.
4: get the sigma 120-300 OS. I can't afford it either, but at least it could be used for wildlife again (if I can be bothered to carry an extra 3kg).
5: 300mm f/2.8 IS (I or II). No. They're silly money but thought I should mention them anyway.
6: anything in the telescope realm that might fit this requirement? They all seem to be too long and slow even with reducers.

At the moment I'm about 50/50 between #1 and #4 with an outside chance I missed something in #6.

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:41 pm 
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Hi popo,

Weather is still stopping me attempting a first light with my Pentax 67 165mm f/2.8. I'm also keeping an eye out for the Pentax 67 300mm f/4 ED and at really silly money (maybe in a year or two) the Pentax-M* 67 400mm f/4 ED. I settled on the Pentax 6x7 lenses partly because the adaptor I use should also work on my telescope and partly because they have a really long registration distance (aka flange focal distance). That was important to me because most MF lenses still have too short a registration distance to work with my filter wheel and camera. The Pentax lenses are summarised here and the registration distances are summarised here.

You have a lot more flexibility in that regard, I think, so you can consider lenses from the likes of Mamiya and even some of the old Hasselblads. The trick is to find the optical gems and then scour the used market for good examples. There are some bargains to be had even after factoring in the price of a Fotodiox adaptor.

Bob.

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Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 12:10 am 
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Is renting a lens an option? Then the high cost and special-purpose nature of the lens are not big issues.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:37 am 
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For starters I got no idea about Astro photography, I have pointed a lens at the moon and that is about it.

Doesn`t it make more sense to hook the camera up to a telescope instead of a normal lens. Isn`t the aim to get closer?

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 6:42 am 
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Thanks for the info Bob. In a very quick search I guess the 300/4 might be a cheap enough option although I might try my luck on finding a 400/4...

theorigamist, renting isn't an option, unless you have 100% perfect weather predicting skills stretching out at least a month or so. The alternative of 4-5 months rental probably would cost more than buying whatever it is in the first place.

maxjj, this is like any other photography, in that you try to use the best lens for the job. It doesn't matter if the lens is one made for the camera, adapted from another system, or a scope which in effect is a lens too. For my needs, I need speed more than focal length. Most conventional scopes have a balance that's too heavy on focal length and not enough on focal ratio. I know of some exceptions but they're not compatible to DSLRs.

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 8:11 am 
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Do you have anyone that you could `borrow` a lens from from? (or even a local group eg photog or astro, even if it means paying to join)

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:22 am 
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Selling the 100-400 isnt an option?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 11:12 am 
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oldCarlos, I'm not aware of local photo groups although I haven't looked. I think that would run into the same issues as hire since the lenses that would be most interesting are exotic enough to be expensive. There is an astro club but last time I looked they only offered loan scopes, and the specs of those would have the same issue as anything I'd buy anyway.

Ruben, selling the one lens I'd keep if I could only have one lens isn't an option :P


In some more searching, the "better" ED version of the Pentax 300/4 can't be easily found, and I'm not sure what the cheaper older version is like.

While I say I can't afford it, I still think if I buy anything, the Sigma 120-300 OS is the logical choice. I can stick it on a credit card for now while I work out where to make up the rest of the difference... I do have an instant access way to get money out of my mortgage as a cheap loan for example. The Canon 200-400/4 is also something on my wish list and due to be announced shortly, but I suspect that'll be much worse on cost.

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Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:26 pm 
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Hi popo,

I was hoping you hadn't missed the ED suffix on that Pentax 300mm. Those non-ED versions are cheaper for a reason. :evil:

The weather flatters to deceive again this afternoon. Unfortunately my favourite forecasting tool indicates I'll have to wait a little longer to test the 165mm f/2.8 and the rest of the imaging train. :cry:

Bob.

_________________
Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm 1:1.8.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14mm-150mm f/3.5 - f/5.6 ASPH.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:03 pm 
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In my pre-coffee search I was turning up lots of the non-ED version. But once I had woken up it wasn't looking so simple. So many choices still...

I was wondering about the weather. Looks mostly clear on my way home from work and still clear now. Seems cloud is due to move in later in the evening but there might still be a window of opportunity before that?

_________________
Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:06 pm 
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If the 300mm f4 is an option, then would a Canon EF 135mm f2 + extenders also be an option? It's not quite as long as the 300mm, but maybe you'd find more uses for the 135mm, whereas you mentioned in the original post that 300mm f4 would not be used for anything else. Also, I don't know what extenders you already have. If you already have a 2x extender, then the 135mm is a cheaper option than the 300mm f4.

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Body: Canon Rebel XS, Canon EOS 7D
Lenses: Sigma 17-70mm f2.8-4.0 OS HSM DC Macro, Canon EF-S 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS II, Canon EF 50mm f1.8 II, Canon EF-S 10-22mm f3.5-4.5 USM, Canon EF 85mm f1.8 II USM


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:26 pm 
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I have the Sigma 2x (also 1.4x) and they both don't react well with the 135/2 wide open. Maybe a Canon one would work better but again that's a significant spend.

Sanity is winning at the moment. No more lenses!

_________________
Canon DSLRs: 7D, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 50/1.8, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 28-80 V, 70-300L, 100-400L, TS-E 24/3.5L, MP-E 65, EF-S 15-85 IS
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS, Celestron 1325/13
Tinies: Sony HX9V.


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