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Lens advice

tk's joytk's joy Posts: 2,490 Officer
Considering buy the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR Zoom Lens for my D7000. Thoughts? I have the standard kit lens that came w/ my D50 several years ago, but have wanted a 300mm even w/ the D50 so....birthday coming up, why not scratch that itch. Oh, might let the D50 body go if anyone interested. Works fine and didn't really need to replace it, just kinda' wanted that D7000.

tk

Replies

  • ChuckcChuckc Posts: 4,398 Captain
    For not much more you can get a 70-300VR which is reportedly better optically, has manual focus override and is a full frame lens. Also, the latest Tamron 70-300 USD lens is supposedly quite good as well. You can also consider the older 300 F4 ED-IF screwdrive lens if you think you'll be stuck at 300 most of the time. It can be had for about the same money and while you give up zoom you gain light transmission and build quality. I've not used my 70-300 since I bought my 300.
  • Stetson LawStetson Law Posts: 489 Deckhand
    Chuckc wrote: »
    For not much more you can get a 70-300VR which is reportedly better optically, has manual focus override and is a full frame lens. Also, the latest Tamron 70-300 USD lens is supposedly quite good as well. You can also consider the older 300 F4 ED-IF screwdrive lens if you think you'll be stuck at 300 most of the time. It can be had for about the same money and while you give up zoom you gain light transmission and build quality. I've not used my 70-300 since I bought my 300.

    This.
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,415 AG
    I guess it depends on what your opinion is of "not much more" money for the 70-300 VR.

    The 55-300 is ~$360.

    and the 70-300 is ~$600.

    Personally, I don't call the "not much more."

    Now with that said, I wouldn't own the 55-300, but that is just me.

    Then again I wouldn't own the 70-300 either, but that is just me.

    I know many people that are happy with the 18-105 and the 70-300.
  • tk's joytk's joy Posts: 2,490 Officer
    Is the 70-300 that many people are happy with a Nikor lens or a third party lens, and why wouldn't you have the others (glass, etc ?). Not trying to be a pain, just trying to understand.

    tk
  • ChuckcChuckc Posts: 4,398 Captain
    You can often find the 70-300 VR available as a refurb which is not much more money than the 55-300, I bought mine as a refurb from KEH.

    If you buy Nikkor make sure the 70-300 you are looking at is the VR version which is better optically than the prior versions. If you look at the Tamron 70-300 be sure it's the latest version as well as there have been many previous revisions that are nowhere near as good as the current stabilized model. KEH has the Tamron in LN condition for $310.00
  • ChuckcChuckc Posts: 4,398 Captain
    I can't speak for Waterengineer but he is a pretty avid bird shooter and the 5.6 aperture of the consumer zooms is a significant disadvantage for moving targets. If my budget would allow it I would gladly step up to a 300 f/2.8 lens. In low light it's worth the extra size, weight and cost.
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,415 AG
    :Agree Chuck got this one right.

    I am an IQ freak. The consumer zooms don't get it.

    I have an old consumer 70-300 w/ a psuedo-macro function. The only reason I keep it is because the psuedo-macro function is "OK" and I drag it our occasionally to shoot the odd flower or bug of jewelry, etc. But I never got the macro bug so it doesn't get exercised much.

    As I said above, most folks will be content with the 70-300. I suggest buying it, and when it no longer suits, if ever, then upgrade.

    If the "project" is to shoot critters, then the f4 300mm is the minimum lens. Do not buy anything other than a Nikkor. There is not a bad Nikkor 300mm prime. You can purchase 300mm f4 ED lenses for less about $600 all day long.

    Also, I know you are probably trying to get away cheap, but what about that new 70-200 f4? That lens is getting incredible reviews. Since it is a FX format lens it will behave like a 300mm on your DX format camera.
  • ChuckcChuckc Posts: 4,398 Captain
    KEH usually has the screwdrive 300 F4's in stock for around $400-450. One other advantage to the 300 F4 is that you can use a teleconverter with them. With the screwdrive Nikkor you will need to use a third party TC to retain autofocus. I bought a Kenko Teleplus Pro from KEH which I have posted some photos with in the 2013 picture thread.

    300 plus 1.4 TC gets you 420MM, add the crop factor and you are looking at 630MM equivalent.
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