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LENS REVIEW: Tasco 1000-3000mm Super Telephoto Lens (Scope)

LENS REVIEW: Tasco Spotting Scope 1000-3000mm f/16-48
LENS REVIEW: Tasco Spotting Scope 1000-3000mm f/16-48


This is a spotting/telescope that can be used for DSLR cameras via a 'T-Mount Adapter'. This lens has a focal range of 1000-3000mm with minimum focusing distance of 8 Feet or 2.5 Meters. This scope/lens is best suited for use with landscape and wildlife photography. If you intend to do astrophotography, you should instead look for a dedicated 'Astronomical Telescope'.

Tasco 1000-3000mm Super Telephoto Lens



Mount: T- Mount
Can mount to any camera body with the proper adapter

Focusing: Manual

Focal Range: 1000 - 3000 mm

Aperture Range: f/16 (1000mm), f/32 (2000mm), f/48 (3000mm)

Filter Thread Size: 58 mm

Macro Magnification: n/a

Vibration Reduction: None

Minimum Focusing Distance: 8 Feet / 2.5 Meters

Body Construction: All Metal with Plastic Bayonet (!)

Made in Japan

(Any information about this lens is hard to find online,
not even on their website.)



This lens, when compacted, is just about at tall as my other lenses. Surprisingly, weighs more or less a pound and feels lighter than my other lenses! It's compact enough and fits nicely into my messenger bag without having to travel it in a separate carrier.

Shooting this lens hand held for photos is easy, while I would prefer using a tripod for videos. Speaking of tripod, this lens has a built-in tripod mount that you cannot remove or adjust.

Everything about the body is all-metal including the focus and zoom rings. Sadly, the bayonet is made of polycarbonate and it already cracked! I was able to repair and use it normally.

When the lens was opened, I see that there's a glass prism inside which is used for transmitting images to the sensor.

The textured rubber grip feels comfortable on the hand. Focusing feels very damped thanks to the viscosity of the lubricant inside. However, I wanted to make it loose since I'm doing manual focus and shooting it handheld.

A separate zoom ring is right below the focus ring. There are no aperture blades inside this lens and aperture is preset to the focal lengths available: f/16 at 1000mm, f/36 at 2000mm and f/48 at 3000mm.

The Minimum Focusing Distance is actually a surprise since it's much closer than that of the 200mm lens I have!

This lens can be attached to any camera with a 'T Mount Adapter'. Since I couldn't find these locally, I had to wait 2 weeks for online order. I'm surprised it took only 2 weeks instead of 4 weeks!



Mod #1: Make The Focus Ring Loose

Imagine if you were in my place, shooting this thing handheld. You might want the focus ring to rotate more loosely, effortlessly and with minimal resistance. Otherwise, my wrist would hurt! So I opened it and wiped away the lubricant that causes the dampness. Still not enough, I added powder (careful not to let it get inside glass) and that did the trick.

There's a Barlow mechanism inside!

Mod #2: Black Paint To Improve Optic

I applied black ink around the edges of the front element, which I can still remove if I wish to. This old technique is done to remove stray light and improve the optics of the lens.

Mod #3: DIY Stabilizer

Now at 3000mm, this lens is prone to vibration at the slightest blow of the wind. I had a scarf lying around and knotted it tightly to the tripod to act as counterweight. It's super effective and the video at the end of this post is my proof.



On a bright sunny day, I could afford to set a high shutter speed and get sharp images. Given its dark aperture, slower shutter speed on night shots without blur is possible with the use of a tripod. This is a dark lens with its aperture range, and I often had to edit the brightness/levels even when already shooting at high ISO (usually 3200 to 6400) on a bright sunny day. Sometimes I leave the images just as they are, and if I ever wish to edit, it's only to bump up the contrast or brightness.

Chromatic Aberration is not noticeable unless you're a pixel peeper type of person. However, it can be distracting on high contrast scenes where there are both very bright and very dark areas, like shooting the moon.

3000mm, Corrected

Sharpness was never an issue with this lens since I've consistently got crisp images. It's the contrast where this lens is weakest. The soft contrast however, looks tolerable and can easily be fixed in post processing.

1000mm, Unedited. You can see every crack on the wall!

3000mm, Unedited

3000mm, Desaturated to B&W

1000mm, Unedited

3000mm, Unedited



If you really want something very sharp, crisp or high contrast, then you have to be willing to shell out big cash for a good telephoto lens! If you're looking for options, check out the products I included below.

Again, this lens is made for landscape and wildlife photography. There are special 'Astronomical Telescopes' made specifically for astrophotography.

Given that this is a budget lens, I could say that the images we get with this 1000-3000mm lens is okay and I'm happy because it gets the job done -- you get super telephoto zoom when you need to.

Handling - 9/10

Sharpness - 8/10

Contrast - 5/10

Color Rendition - 8/10

Thank you for dropping by! =)



1000mm, Handheld


1000mm, Handheld

1000mm, Handheld

1000mm, Tripod

3000mm, Handheld

1000mm, Handheld

1000mm, Handheld

3000mm, Handheld



Further Readings

April 20: Photo Walk Around Sta. Cruz in Manila

April 22: World's Smallest Moon Caught in Manila Bay!


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