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    • So, sometimes purchase used gear from Adorama and I have been very satisfied with each and every purchase. I purchased used a Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di USD which is their 1st gen that does NOT have IS. I think the list price is around $1600 which is pretty inexpensive but I bought this lens for $850. Not that I have money to throw around but it was low risk proposition....meaning I had low expectations for that amount of money.

      I have posted some moon photos here and was 74.3% satisfied with the outcome...nothing I could really sell professionally but nice to have.

      When I was in Hawaii I was trying to shoot some surfing with really bad results. And, then I was trying to shoot it for a clients event with equally disastrous results.

      So, sending gear in for repair ranks with equal enthusiasm to a route canal at the dentist. Even though I am a Sony guy, I don't doubt if I had to send something into Sony it would be excruciating. I have sent a lens into Sigma and not bad....on the level of maybe getting a new crown if I stick with the dental metaphors.

      So, I called Tamron and actually got to speak with a very friendly young lady and she explained the repair process and seemingly accurately diagnosed my issue - I probably just needed the lens calibrated for my Sony camera and the standard fee is $250. OK! Maybe this does not end up needing to be a paperweight! So, it sorta felt like I had scheduled a dental cleaning of my teeth....not a joyous event but stuff you just gotta do.

      So, I got the lens back today - first off....they repaired/cleaned my lens in 3 days and shipped it the next day. WOW! Their communication emails, etc were TOP NOTCH. NO OTHER CAMERA VENDOR DOES THAT!

      So, right away I did a test shot. WTF?

    • So, I called them right away and the girl politely and even friendly right away asked me "do you still have the polarizing filter on the lens?". Immediately it all made sense. 90% of the time I am shooting in bright sun so by default I would use this polarizing filter. That is why my daytime images sucked. So, a $250 lesson but I am so impressed with Tamron that I will seriously consider buying their glass if makes sense in whatever lens I decide to add to my arsenal.

      Below is a non-polarizing lens on a can still see that at 600mm it is not crisp but probably usable for the internet.

      I work really hard to bring my customers the best customer service as possible and it is really refreshing to find a vendor in an industry not known for customer service (the distributors are, not the OEM's..) that really has the service aspect down. Gold Star to Tamron!

    • Yah - I use a polariser occasionally - even on a 35mm it's a formula for misses autofocusses. But sometimes it gets a result.

    • Fascinating!! I have to admit, I don't use any filters except sometimes the best neutral density or polarizers I can buy. I just don't like the idea of paying so much for a lens and then taking a risk on the filter. I've never damaged the front of a lens, so maybe my luck holds.

    • So, I have created this brand called "The Lake Life" and gonna sell some foam trucker, before I put together my online store (even though I suspect 70% of my sales will be from locals I meet at any given lake I am at...) I ran an ad on Craigslist looking for a young buxom bikini model (I know that sounds terrible but that is what is going to sell hats) and I got three great responses. One was from a local agency that I was really impressed with their affordability and how professional they were. Just so no one thinks I am trying to sound like a big shot photographer my ad was for only $25 plus some gas money to the lake. I mean, like if I was hawt, I would not even consider it.

      Anyway, the first model I got some shots of her on the ski and at 560mm it turned out, I was encouraged.

    • These gals were really great....I had a Caucasian girl lined up for sunset but the weather went to turned out my headshots were best with my Sony a7RII with the 85 1.8. I am really impressed with how professional, punctual and sweet these girls were....I did most of my post processing to give it that Instagram look which will be best for the online store.