Teleconverter recommendation request

Started 7 months ago | Discussions
Jacqueaux
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Teleconverter recommendation request
7 months ago

I am considering a teleconverter to use with my A77, with a Minolta 100-300 D APO and 500mm reflex lens, primarily.  I may get TWO.  A 2X and a lesser one that might work with AF.  Any thoughts?

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Richard Lane

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Ron Poelman
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In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

is anything past 1.4X or so is pushing the friendship.
I would agree with that based on my own experiments.
It sort of makes sense.
Lens designers will push a lens as far as the budget will stretch;
as soon as you go much past that, something has to give.
"High quality" in these things is a bit of an oxymoron.
It will vary from lens to lens, but I've given up on them
for tripod/lower ISO and more cropping.
Save your time and your bucks for more reach,
cheap tele's can give reasonable results with a bit of a tweak.

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JerryCurtis
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I've looked at that possibility, and discounted them...
In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

Based on many comments, cropping a shot taken with a high-res sensor - like the A77's - and good glass - like the 70-400G - is as good as adding a teleconverter. Besides, the teleconverter loses light. The f/8 500mm reflex becomes a f/11 with a 1.4X and a f/16 with a 2X, so only good in the best light or with high ISOs - and we all know that Sony cams aren't at their best at higher ISOs. I could have gotten the 1.4X genuine Sony brand new at half-price when the local Sony store closed out here a year or so ago, but passed. I'm a bit sorry for not picking up the 200mm 2.8 at a much-reduced price, though

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eastriding4310
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

You did not say, but I am guessing that you want to use it as a doubler for your walk around lenses, probably handheld.

I believe that you would be wasting your money by getting a teleconverter for your Minolta 500mm reflex.  It is a great lens, but I don't believe that it is sharp enough for teleconverter work. I just returned from vacation where I took over two thousand shots with my Minolta 500mm mounted on my A77.  A really great lens!

I have five teleconverters.  Hope springs eternal!  They are all terribly disappointing except one. In my experience, teleconverters only work well on very sharp lenses.  Only one of my teleconverters works well.  That is the 2x teleconverter that I got for my set of Mamiya 645 (medium format) prime lenses, 200mm, 300mm and 500mm.  These lenses are sharp and cheap!  I use these on my A77 with a converter.  The problem is, to get great long telephoto shots, you need good support, such as a tripod.

I think you will be disappointed with a teleconverter.  I did not try my teleconverter on my Minolta 500mm reflex because I did not feel from my experience that the images would hold up, especially handheld.

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busch
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

I have used several different TC's, both the Sony and the Kenko on both Sony and Sigma glass. I have used them on various Sony Alpha's. I have found the 2X to render poor quality regardless of the mix. The Kenko 1.4X Teleplus PRO 300 DG (now hard to find) gives the best quality and is quite usable in most cases. I sold my Sony TC's and now use only the above mentioned Kenko. YMMV
I doubt that any TC will work well (if at all) with the 500mm lens you mentioned.

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Busch
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gopiqpp
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to busch, 7 months ago

How about the Smart Tel feature on A77 ? and the Clear Image Zoom in the A57 ? Wouldn't these give results at least as good as TC, with the added advantage of no F-stop loss, and no extra cost?

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Michael Fritzen
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

Hi,

questions of this type have been discussed many times around here. Combos which provide good to excellent results are high class prime tele lenses + dedicated TC (1,4x with better results; 2x already getting down into the "still usable" range). These are mainly the 2,8/200, the 2,8/300, the 4,5/400 and the 4,0/600. In combos of zooms with dedicated TCs (the Minolta/Sony 70-200; the Sigma 100-300) the results are mostly in the range from usable to good. But here are already situations where a cropped image taken with a high resolution camera and the lens w/o TC matches or tops the result of a shot taken with TC which means little or no resolution gain. Of course it could be fun to play around with a 500mm mirror lens + 2xTC used on the 1,5x crop APS-C sensor camera. But one shouldn't forget that such a long reach is only difficult to manage from the optical side but also from stabilization and last but not least from the atmospheric conditions (haze, heat oscilation).

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Michael Fritzen

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Renato1
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

I have to disagree with the sentiments expressed by others here. Using a teleconverter does introduce distortion to parts of the image - but so what? It's usually at the edges, and if you notice them you can crop them out and still have more usable pixels than if you just cropped the picture taken without teleconverter in the manner suggested by others.

My 500mm Reflex lens is one of the sharpest I own, and I can't see why a teleconverter wouldn't be any good for it - other than for the difficulty of focusing it manually and having to use it on a tripod - which may be significant for you.

The Teleconverter article at Dyxum.com tells you what teleconverter magnifications enable autofocus to still work on zoom lenses.
http://www.dyxum.com/lenses/teleconverters.asp
If you read down near the bottom of the article, don't expect to have much hope getting your Minolta 100-300mm APO lens to autofocus with a 1.4X teleconverter.
Regards,
Renato

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busch
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to gopiqpp, 7 months ago

I would personally rather crop in post rather than in camera plus that only works in JPEG. However, it can be useful at times.

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Busch
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brian14478
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

Jacqueaux wrote:

I am considering a teleconverter to use with my A77, with a Minolta 100-300 D APO and 500mm reflex lens, primarily. I may get TWO. A 2X and a lesser one that might work with AF. Any thoughts?

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Richard Lane

You really should have larger aperture lenses for tc use. Many will find them usefull with fast primes or zooms. But as mentioned...anything over 1.4x is probably not going to do anything cropping/upscaling cannot and will degrade iq along with losing 2 stops of light. Your Minolta isn't below f4 to auto focus with a tc.

But regardless..the kenko 1.4x dgx rates better than about everything out there.

http://translate.google.de/translate?js=y&prev=_t&hl=de&ie=UTF-8&layout=1&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.traumflieger.de%2Fobjektivtest%2Fopen_test%2Ftelekonverter%2Foverview.php&sl=de&tl=en

Best of luck-brian

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busch
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to Renato1, 7 months ago

Renato1 wrote:

I have to disagree with the sentiments expressed by others here. Using a teleconverter does introduce distortion to parts of the image - but so what? It's usually at the edges, and if you notice them you can crop them out and still have more usable pixels than if you just cropped the picture taken without teleconverter in the manner suggested by others.

My 500mm Reflex lens is one of the sharpest I own, and I can't see why a teleconverter wouldn't be any good for it - other than for the difficulty of focusing it manually and having to use it on a tripod - which may be significant for you.

The TC's I've used degarded the entire image and not just the edges.

The 500 mirror is a pretty good lens for the price but it is certainly not the sharpest I've used by quite a margin. Of course, if it gives you what you want that is what counts.

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Busch
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RussAdams
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In reply to Jacqueaux, 7 months ago

I have both the Kenko 1.4 teleconverter and the Minolta 500 reflex.

If you'd like some sample images to play with let me know. I'd be happy to shoot a couple with and without the tele.

Russ

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Renato1
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to busch, 7 months ago

The teleconverters I use for my Minolta G lenses are the matched Minolta 1.4X and 2X APO ones.

And I also have the Kenko HG PRO 1.4X and 2X teleconverters - can't see that much difference between either of the two sets.

Maybe my Reflex lens is better than the average? I did my comparisons using that chart one downloads and photographs to check resolution. I compared it to Sigma APO lenses, and Minolta G lenses. Mirror lenses are like mirror telescopes - if the collimation is right, they are superb. If the collimation is the slightest bit out, the results suffer fairly dramatically.
Regards,
Renato

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RussAdams
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Collimation?
In reply to Renato1, 7 months ago

Renato1 wrote:

<snip>

Maybe my Reflex lens is better than the average? I did my comparisons using that chart one downloads and photographs to check resolution. I compared it to Sigma APO lenses, and Minolta G lenses. Mirror lenses are like mirror telescopes - if the collimation is right, they are superb. If the collimation is the slightest bit out, the results suffer fairly dramatically.
Regards,
Renato

Hi Renato,

Do you have sample shots of your 500mm reflex? With and with the 1.4 TC?

I've always thought mine was 'soft' but have not even tried with the A77. I bought a 70-400G zoom and have not used the 500 since...

How do you tell if the collimation is out? And how do you correct it if it is?

Thanks!

Russ

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Renato1
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Re: Collimation?
In reply to RussAdams, 7 months ago

RussAdams wrote:

Renato1 wrote:

<snip>

Maybe my Reflex lens is better than the average? I did my comparisons using that chart one downloads and photographs to check resolution. I compared it to Sigma APO lenses, and Minolta G lenses. Mirror lenses are like mirror telescopes - if the collimation is right, they are superb. If the collimation is the slightest bit out, the results suffer fairly dramatically.
Regards,
Renato

Hi Renato,

Do you have sample shots of your 500mm reflex? With and with the 1.4 TC?

I've always thought mine was 'soft' but have not even tried with the A77. I bought a 70-400G zoom and have not used the 500 since...

How do you tell if the collimation is out? And how do you correct it if it is?

Thanks!

Russ

Hi Russ,

Finding my shots is something like finding a needle in a haystack at the moment.

To test collimation, aim at a star. Keeping it in the centre of the field throw the image out of focus. You should see a nice round doughnut shape forming, with the black bit dead centre of the doughnut. Out of collimation images have the black bit more towards one edge of the doughnut, with the opposite edge of the doughnut going out of round.

Normally when the defocussed image is out of round, in telescopes one adjusts three screws to bring it back to being comcentric. But I don't think that can be done with the Reflex lens. Similarly I have a little Meade Maksutov telescope that has no means of adjustment, unless I drill through it's rear end to access the screws.

But if your lens is in collimation, the problem may just be that the Reflex lens is lighter than your G zoom, so that it doesn't have the inertia and shakes more as you take the shot, and Steady Shot can't compensate for the shake as well. You'll only be able to find out by doing comparison shots on a tripod, using the self timer to trigger each shot.

Regards,

Renato

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aaanouel
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Re: Teleconverter recommendation request
In reply to busch, 7 months ago

That's right.  I have a 2x Vivitar AF Teleconverter (2XMC7, 7 Elements) and it doesn't work too good when stacked with Sony SAL18-250. Many people warn about 2X teleconverters poor performance, it's preferable 1.4X, if so.

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RussAdams
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In reply to Renato1, 7 months ago

For the tips Renato!

I'm currently working in Dublin, Ireland - don't get to see stars very often unfortunately! LOL.

Will give it a go with a bright light perhaps.

Russ

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