Some may realize how tele-centric I am with my lenses, so here’s a shootout of 7 lenses that can reach 210mm either by themselves or with the aid of teleconverters. All shot with the Sony A100 at F16, ISO Low-key 80 with flash on a certain morning of 20th September 2007.
Lenses involved, from right to left:
- Peleng 8mm F3.5 circular fisheye (okay, it wasn’t included but it sneaked in because it thought it would look nice in the picture)
- Sony 18-70mm F3.5-5.6 DT (sold)
- Minolta 28-80mm F3.5-5.6 Silver (sold)
- Vivitar Series 1 28-105mm F2.8-3.8
- Cosina 70-210mm F2.8-4 Macro
- Minolta 70-210mm F4 “beercan”
- Tamron 200-400mm F5.6
The battered, misaligned elements, melted rubber Sigma 70-210mm F4-5.6 opted to skip the photo shoot.
Sony 18-70mm F3.5-5.6 DT with Tamron 1.4x and Kenko 2x. 1/60s.
Minolta 28-80mm F3.5-5.6 with Tamron 1.4x and Kenko 2x. 1/100s.
Vivitar Series 1 28-105mm F2.8-3.8 with Kenko 2x. 1/125s.
Sigma 70-210mm F4-5.6. 1/125s. Note that this is a battered lens found in a box of junk, with misaligned elements that give all sorts of aberrations.
Minolta 70-210mm F4 “beercan”. 1/125s.
Cosina 70-210mm F2.8-4 Macro. 1/125s.
Tamron 200-400mm F5.6. 1/125s. The minimum focus distance is 2.5 meters, far longer than my room, thus the objects are out of focus.
Tamron 200-400mm F5.6 at F32 1/125s. Still not quite in focus.
Why do the lenses vary so much in color and actual focal length?
- Focal length changes with focus distance. The closer the focus, the shorter the focal length, especially on zoom lenses.
- Slower shutter speeds let in more ambient light; in the Sony 18-70mm it looks more blue because more flourescent light has come in.
Also, the Tamron 1.4x teleconverter is a wee bit soft. Gotta get a newer one… but this is a nice softener for portraits.
I particularly like the Vivitar Series 1 28-105mm’s color. The Tamron 200-400mm seems rather blue while the F32 shot kills off the flourescent light’s blue.
To be fair, I should shoot with the lenses focused at infinity, plus most lenses (except portrait lenses and macros) are optimized for sharpness at infinity. I conducted this test past midnight, like about every other photographic test that I do, or I could’ve headed out to the hills near by house.