View Full Version : SONY Longshot!

06-27-2007, 07:45 AM
Well, in an effort to save a buck, I found a TAMRON Adaptall 2 200-500mm f/6.9 LD (Model 06A) on the 'bay.

Not exactly the lightest or the brightest lens in the world, but for the final $120.00 bid, it was kind of hard to pass on, since I have wanted a lens with that range on the SONY A100 for a long time, now. I considered popping for another SP AF200-500mm f/5-6.3 Di LD (Model A08), but at $859 ... that's a far cry from $120.

Heck, I spent $100 on that MF 500mm f/8 Reflex lens and it isn't anywhere near as sharp as this. Although the Reflex is significantly lighter, at only 10 ounces. It also is a fixed focal length ... only 500mm f/8 is available (or 1000mm f/16 with the 2x doubler).

Now, like the Reflex, this is a totally manual-focus and manual-aperture beastie, but when you are taking the "long shot" you usually have time to focus up. The Reflex 500mm is quite tight in its focusing, the long-glass is a bit more flexible, faster and easier to control. Also, the benefit of zooming is there, unlike the the Reflex.

Hey, AF is nice, I have to admit. My TAMRON Canon-mount "Di" has that ... so it's hard not to see the advantages, especially when you have a B-1B Lancer sweeping down on you at 800mph, shooting 5-fps in predictive AI SERVO AF, during the EAA Airshow in Oshkosh, by gosh!

Setting up the aperture, for the most part ... is a simple operation and you set the A100's Mode switch to S or M, to adjust your speed. Not too "lightweight" ... which is my watchword ... but, for $750 more? It comes down to "eventually."

Since I already have the Adaptall 2 converters for the SONY and the Canon ... it just seemed a doable solution. Am I convinced? Well, not quite :rolleyes: ... but I'll give it a run, for the summer. :D

I'll provide a side-by-side image of the two 200-500mm lens on their respective bodies ... so people may see what it looks like. Both are designed to work with film or full-frame sensors, but aside from sheer weight -> 97.7 oz. (06A) vs 43.6 oz. (A08), there are also tremendous differences between these identically-ranged lenses: The "Adaptall 2" is all metal and only changes length as you focus it. Its zoom change remains hidden inside the lens body. It is a pure glass solution with no embellishments. Discontinued in 1984.

The "Di", on the other hand, is much lighter (by more than 1/2 due to a plastic body) and changes length as you zoom, allowing it to be significantly shorter at the 200mm setting. It has excellent autofocus and the manual-focus ring is very near the camera body, rather than on the other end, like the Adaptall 2.

Edit: You know, the more I think about it ... nearly 100 ounces of lens is serious business ... :(

06-27-2007, 04:19 PM
Well Don you certainly have a rather impressive collection of long lenses (again can't help but wonder if you drive fast cars as well), but i'm wondering if you can chime in on possibly one of the more powerful adaptions to a digital slr - spotting scopes.

i picked up the alpha for my old man, who has an ATS 65 HD spotting scope from swarovski for bird watching. there are two adaptors for cameras, one is a simple screw for the end of a lens, the other is a T-mount (adaptor required). The focal length of this setup would be about 4500mm according to the specs.

do you have any input on putting this camera onto the spotting scope? have you done it? how well does it work, and how much do you recommend a remote??



06-27-2007, 06:36 PM
Uh, no ... never done spotting scope thing.

I do play with the optics from time to time, but I don't have THAT kind of time. LOL :D

You would probably have to go to the manufacturer ... to find out the distance of where the light crosses over with respect to the eyepiece, to even know what kind of optic converter you'd need and its length.

Sounds like fun, though ... if you could work it out. Most spotting scopes are pretty heavy, sturdy, and usually tripod mounted as I recall. That really doesn't lend itself to any kind of real portability. But, then again, that's what they said about 8"x10" viewcameras. LOL :D

Good luck in your search and experiment. :)