20 February 2012

Why I like the DA 55300.. and the Rikenon 70-150

This image was taken with the DA 55-300mm lens (150mm f/5 -1/250s, iso3200). It was also shot with the Rikenon-XR 70-150 (150mm, f/4 -1/125s, iso1600). They are shown below - though not necessarily in that order.

  •  The Rikenon was focused through the VF, so no precise live-view focusing aid. It was also taken in Av mode so exposure was set with the wide-open lens. SR was set at 150mm. 
  •  The DA lens focused itself and found f/5 to be its wide-open choice. It also was in Av mode.  

These were not shot as controlled images and I could have done much better for making them both sharper and closer to identical (e.g. fixed ISO and a tripod). They are also substantially cropped to show the area of most-critical detail; crops were in the same portion of the image field, I didn't cheat and put one on the frame's edge!  So they are not intended to be rigorous, simply what-if one-off hand-held shots to see how they compared. Aren't hyphens fun?  Let's face it: I do not spend my life going around taking test shots; I will grab the camera and get the shot on the fly, and that's what I want to test.  Both used center-weight metering so that matched well - though at f/5 vs f/4 I expected the DA image to be a bit darker.

Given all that, I can only say they compare quite well. In both cases, great isolation on the lonely seed-case, nice background blur, and decent branch detail. A slight color shift, no surprise even with flat grey lighting, as 20 years has seen great changes in lens coatings. Hard to pretend you cannot see which image is which; ISO3200 is great with the K-5 but it isn't an invisible process.
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