70-300 vr nikon


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Jul 17, 2008
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Is everyone happy with this lense?

thinking about going with this until the big glass purchase...

i am not happy with the sharpness of the 18-200vr at 200mm, I was wondering how the 70-300 nikon was for sharpness
very similiar

obviously 200 will be sharper on a - 300 but 270 - 300 will look terrible.
also thoughts on the 80-200 2.8 if you have experience...thats another option for me
The 18-200mm VR is a little miracle of a lens, and very good quality for a superzoom -- I'd say it's better than the 70-300mm. Is that extra 300mm worth buying a new lens? In which case, you might consider a 400mm lens just as well.
if you are looking for a great lens... 70-200 VR. By far my favorite that I have. Trouble is, they are a bloody fortune. ~$1500 us/$2000cdn. Although I've also heard great things about the sigma 70-200 F2.8 as well. I know the police force use them here, and the two cops I've talked to about them really like them and 'borrow' them for playing around with on the weekends. Just check first, I've heard some of the sigma lenses don't work on the D200 or D90... someone correct me if I'm wrong.
The 80-200 f/2.8 is optically as good as the 70-200 f/2.8 VR. A big wonderful and tac sharp lens even at 200mm. I have used mine for everything from portraits to motorbike races.

The only downside over the 70-300 is that it's more than twice the size.
very similiar

obviously 200 will be sharper on a - 300 but 270 - 300 will look terrible.

Where did you hear that at 270+ is would be terrrible? I have this lens and it is still pretty sharp at 300. Image below was at taken at 300 and has had no editing done to it, straight out of the camera (was shot in .jpg). While I agree that the 70-200VR (and the 80-200) may be better lenses, but they should be considering the 70-200VR cost almost 4X as much and the 80-200 is almost 2X the money.

Bottom line, for the money, the 70-300VR is a great lens. As with any zoom, there will be some distortion at both ends, but it is really not that bad and can be corrected in pp.

Where did you hear that at 270+ is would be terrrible?

From the MTF50 chart: Nikkor AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 D ED - Review / Test Report

Regardless of what the tiny little 1024x685 picture you posted looks like this lens is far from a stellar performer at 300mm. But below 200 it's great, and at the wide angle it's nothing short of tac sharp. Sorry but to get the most out of your camera you want to outperform your sensor. This lens comes close at 70mm but there are many other FAR sharper options out there.
I'm sorry, but I have to defend the lens some more.

While charts and other technical tests certainly help show the capabilities of a lens, have you ever used it and printed anything with it?

Plus, if we want to pull out reviews, I might be more inclined to listen to someone who actually uses the equipment instead of strictly testing it.

"[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Sharpness: from 70 to 200mm, this lens is quite sharp with plenty of contrast, and I have no real complaints. As you reach out to 300mm, you'll start to see it soften a bit at maximum aperture, though stopped down two stops it remains excellent. On a full frame camera, you'll see that the corners aren't as good as the center, but on APS DSLRs this isn't an issue.[/FONT]" by Thom Hogan

Full review found here: 70-300mm AF-S VR Lens Review by Thom Hogan

Once again though, you have to keep the cost in mind. Yes the 70-200 is a better lens and I would trade up in a heart beat. But I think comparing a $500 lens to a $2000 lens is a little unrealistic.

It's like saying a BMW M5 handles much better than a Honda Accord. Of course it does and for 4X the price it should. But that does not mean the Accord is a bad car.
Oh I am not attacking the lens, especially given it's price. I am just pointing out that yes at 300mm it will be noticeably poor in comparison to the wide side of the zoom range. It's a consumer telezoom, nothing out of the ordinary here.

But if the options are 80-200 or the 70-300, it's a chalk and cheese difference. Having printed something with it is a flawed argument anyway. The question is have you ever cropped down the image and printed the equivalent of say a 400mm or 450mm, or (less likely) have you ever printed a A3 sized print with it. In both of these cases the difference between the wide angle and the long angle would be very clear. Again I am not attacking the lens, just pointing out that given the options it is not the one that will allow the photographer to get the most out of their equipment.

Oh btw to the OP. Don't forget that the 80-200 you end up with a f/2.8 through the entire range, whereas the 70-300 is f/5.6 at the long end. This 2 stop difference counters the lack of the VR in the 80-200.

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