Decently priced APSC e-mount long lens

Richard Crowe

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Of course a combination of "decently priced" and Sony lens" is sort of an oxymoron... However, I would love to see a reasonably small form factor and reasonably priced long focal length lens for either Sony APSC or Full frame e-mount cameras.
I am presently shooting with the Sony A6500 and have a decent collection of lenses which are mostly primes. I plan to back the A6500 up with a second APSC camera to shoot as a dual camera setup.
The only glass that I am missing from my collection is a good long focal length lens. I have a 55-210mm f/4.5-6.3 OSS lens but the image quality and aperture of that lens leaves a lot to be desired.
As an example of my needs, I am shooting a rowing regatta this weekend and will be offering my images to the club. I'd really like to shoot this with only Sony APSC (since I am getting a bit old and the Sony gear is a lot lighter in weight). However, the lack of a decent long focal length lens will force me to bring my Canon 7D2 for which I have several long "L"lenses.
I am selling some of my Canon gear and expect that I should net in the area of two thousand U.S. Dollars. I was thinking about waiting to see what Sony will bring out when they introduce the replacement for the A6500 but, I am getting frustrated in the waiting.
I don't want a super zoom like the Sony 18-135mm because I want a TAD better image quality.
My idea right now is to buy the Sony A6400 from Adorama and also pick up the Sony 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 lens. With the APSC crop factor, this will provide a focal range of from 105mm to 450mm equivalent which will be all that will ever I need (since I will not be selling my Canon 7D2 and long "L" zooms... The Sony lens also has OSS which will help since the A6400 doesn't have IBIS. I could buy both the lens and the camera right at about what I expect to get for my surplus Canon gear...
What do you think about my decision. BTW, I have a Sony 85mm f/1.8 and a Sony 50mm f/1.8 OSS lens which will provide portrait capability wit either the A6500 or A6400 cameras, so the zoom lens will not be needed for portraiture.
What do you think of my plans?
 

somnambulist_squirrel

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Or, you might try using your Canon glass on the a6500 with a Sigma MC-11. Cheaper than a new lens by a ton, and if it doesn't work, you can sell it for not much of a loss at all.

I rented the 70-300 for use with my a6000 to shoot the Killington Cup women's alpine ski race in the fall. It was pretty good, i'd say, even if I wasn't necessarily blown away by its performance. Nevertheless, it captured some nice shots while I had it (most took some editing to clean up, which I am not especially good or practiced at):

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Richard Crowe

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I decided not to get either the 70-300mm OSS or the 24-240mm OSS lenses. I don't like being restricted to shooting at f/5.6 or even f/6.3 at my longest focal length. This has nothing to do with exposure since the relatively high ISO capability of the A6500 and the OSS of these lenses will allow me to shoot at those apertures with no problem. I like a minimum of f/4 (f/2.8 would be better but that would mean a very large and very expensive lens) to get some separation from the background.
While perusing the Adorama website, I found a used Sony 70-200mm f/4 G lens in mint condition and decided on that as my telephoto. I have shot for years with a Canon 70-200mm f/4L IS lens on Canon crop and full frame cameras and have carried these combinations all over the world.
The used 70-200mm Sony was at a very decent price which allowed me to get a second Sony APSC camera, is time an A6400 which I will use in tandem with my A6500. I have decided to restrict my Sony gear to APSC format because of the form factor. The A6400 and used 70-200mm lens cost exactly what a Sony A7iii would have cost me.
I know that the 70-200mm f/4L IS lens is a lot heavier than an APSC lens like the Sony 18-200mm but, the image quality is far better. However, it is actually within reason at 840 grams.
What finally decided me, in addition to the great price (I have purchased used gear from Adorama in the past and have been quite satisfied) is the far better sharpness as per DXO testing than any of the other lenses that I was considering. In fact the Sony 70-200mm f/4 G OSS lens is even sharper than my old standby, the Canon 70-200mm f/4L IS lens which I love and have been using for years.
 

WNG

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I was also going to suggest trying out a Sigma MC-11 with your existing long Canon glass, and add a light carbon monopod.
But your decision to go with a Sony 70-200 f/4 is a good one, was going to suggest that as your Sony solution. It's a much better zoom than the rest.
 

Richard Crowe

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Sep 14, 2018
Messages
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I gravitated to Sony mirrorless and the to A6500 and A6400 for two main reasons:
First is the size of the cameas
Second is the wonderful focusing abilities (especially Eye-AF) pf these cameras. I have an MC-11 which was included in the eBay package when I purchased the A6500 used.
While the MC-11 and 70-200mm f/4L IS and 100-400mm f4.5-5.6L IS II do provide some auto focus capability on my A6500, it is no where as good as a native Sony lens. I would not have gravitated if that was all the capability I could expect.
However, I am not going to purchase a 100-400mm Sony lens or the 400mm Sony. If I absolutely need a longer focal length, I will use my Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6L IS II and MC-11 adapter.
 

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