We are staying in a 9th floor apartment overlooking the Gulf of Mexico in Longboat Key. I've got sort of an homage to Hitchcock's Rear Window going by taking shots from the balcony. Unlike Jimmy Stewart I am not in a full leg cast and wheelchair, sadly Grace Kelly is not by my side either, but I digress.
Years ago someone came up with a formula that the minimum shutter speed should be 1.5 to 2X the focal length of the lens. In other words, shooting with a 100MM required a 1/150 to 1/200 sec shutter speed. It was widely adopted however, if you made your print large enough you would find that there was always a bit of motion blur to speeds 4 or 5X the focal length. For practical purposes the formula worked well. It dawned on me a few weeks ago that with APS-C the working focal length is half again the physical focal length, so the 300MM requires 1/450 to 1/600 second as a base shutter speed for hand held shooting. I found that for me that was inadequate so I start at 1/750 if I am not using a tripod. So far I am quite impressed with the sharpness of the 300MM.
|People gathering for sunset at water's edge. 300MM, 1/750 @ F4|
|300MM, 1/750 @ 5.6|
|Fisherman pulling in net, 300MM, 1/750 @ 9.5|
I've read some reviews with complaints about the AF speed on the 300. This is a lens that focuses as close as about four feet. If you are going from four feet to infinity it may seem to move along slowly but I find that after the first focus is set, more reasonable incremental adjustments are quick.
Color and contrast on the lens fit the bill for me, I haven't noticed any serious CA at all. Fit, finish and the design of the lens are superb. Weight is substantial at about 37 ounces and the lens is a tad over 7" long and with internal focus does not extend. It is easy to hand hold and the balance of the lens on the K-3 is just right. I like the tripod collar configuration with the removable foot in particular. Removing the foot makes the lens a bit thinner allowing it to slide the lens in and out of my camera bag easily. The only thing I do not like about the lens is the removable lens shade. This is a large lens on a K-3 body and it is not exactly unobtrusive. The lens shade adds about 4" to the length and makes it look like a potato launcher. Is it really necessary to have a large PENTAX logo on the shade? A built-in retractable shade would make this lens near perfect.
Recommended 90 points