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  Reviews by: hir0  

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Markins Q-Ball M10

1817
Review Date: Aug 17, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $340.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: the ball action is very smooth, as is the panning base. once you lock the ball down - it's not moving. this head is a joy to use. even with the ball unlocked and the panning base unlocked, there's no play or wobble.
Cons:
the panning base lock not very strong - but it's strong enough to keep it from turning while using the thing. i noticed when i locked it down to screw it onto my tripod legs, there was some slippage.

this is a great ballhead. the pin on the clamp doesn't bother me at all. doesn't take much to loosen the clamp enough to lift the plate out of the clamp. actually, i like the pin. don't have to worry about my gear sliding out if i leave it too loose. the only downside, is Markins didn't offer Fed Ex. i hate waiting around for big brown.

 
Nikon SB-800 AF Speedlight

sb800
Review Date: Jan 22, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $360.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: good powerful flash, nice accessories, good recycle time.
Cons:
a bit pricey, but i would buy it again over the sb-600

highly recommended

 
Tamron 70-300MM F/4-5.6 LD Macro AF

70300mm
Review Date: Jan 22, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $170.00 | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: good zoom range, built in macro function, cheap
Cons:
slow af, hunting, chromatic abberations, softness at 300mm

this lens is ok for someone who does not really care for optical quality but would like a lens that gives a good zoom range . i have managed to get some decently sharp photos out of this lens, but it is soft above 200mm. chromatic abberations are a very big problem for this lens despite the "LD" glass. the macro function can be handy for closeups, but by no means is a good alternative to a true macro lens. the af is loud and slow and hunts a lot. other than that, the lens is light, and works pretty well below 200mm.

 
Tamron 90MM F/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 SP AF

lens_1_
Review Date: Jan 22, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $490.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: razor sharp lens, lightweight, nice bokeh, smooth manual focus
Cons:
not internal focus, lens grows

this is the sharpest lens i own, it is plastic, but really well built. the switch from af to mf is very easy, and the mf is nice and mooth. it's nice and light - the front element is deeply recessed, so the lens hood is not needed (i've never used it). the autofocus speed is acceptable, and fairly reliable. i would recommend this lens to anyone. the lens pictured for this review is not the tamron sp90 di.