D5200 Lens ~ Seeking at least 300mm

OhioGuy

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Hey everyone!

I have a Nikon D5200 and I'm trying to get some recommendations on a decent 300mm lens that will fit this model. The brand name isn't as important, but I would like something that has good, to above quality output. This lens also must be fully automatic, with vibration reduction because I won't be using a tripod for most of my shooting. My interests are for mostly outdoor/wildlife, but will have a daughter graduating this spring and it will be held indoors and I will need something that will reach the stage as she receives her diploma. :) Usually you're like 100 yards away.

Price range.... I'd like to stay under $400 and would consider "used" of course to save some money.

Thanks for any links or recommendations!
 

Braineack

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i would look into a refurbished 70-300 AF-P DX lens, the prices are about half of a new one. so $150 right now.

There are many different versions of the 70-300, so you want to find the one that shows: DX, AF-P, ED, and VR.
 
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OhioGuy

OhioGuy

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i would look into a refurbished 70-300 AF-P DX lens, the prices are about half of a new one. so $150 right now.

There are many different versions of the 70-300, so you want to find the one that shows: DX, AF-P, ED, and VR.

Very helpful. Thank you.
 

Designer

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This is the one I have:

nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6g ed af-s vr | eBay

Fast focus, accurate, excellent image quality.

I'm not sure about hand holding indoors, but with practice you should be able to get some good shots. Practice good camera handling techniques before the event.
 

Braineack

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that's the FX version. it's a touch faster, but also larger/heavier/more expensive.
 

RVT1K

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i would look into a refurbished 70-300 AF-P DX lens, the prices are about half of a new one. so $150 right now.

There are many different versions of the 70-300, so you want to find the one that shows: DX, AF-P, ED, and VR.

I had one and I liked it.
 

Call_me_Tom

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This is the one I have:

nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6g ed af-s vr | eBay

Fast focus, accurate, excellent image quality.

I'm not sure about hand holding indoors, but with practice you should be able to get some good shots. Practice good camera handling techniques before the event.
I also own this lens and a 70-200/2.8 and I love both of them. OP can’t go wrong with the 70-300/4.5-5.6 great lens and a great value and it’s FX so you can go between crop and FF which is exactly why I bought it when it was first released.
 

dunfly

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I don't think the 70-300 AF-P is fully compatible with the D5200. It will work, but a lot of the controls do not function properly. I have a D5200 and avoid the AF-P lenses. I seriously doubt that any lens slower than 2.8 will work for your daughter's graduation. To get that range, you will be shooting at a minimum of 5.6 in a low light situation where you need a high shutter speed. The D5200 does not work well with high ISO so you have a lot working against you. I would rent a faster lens for that occasion, if possible.
 
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Braineack

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Nikon shows it's compatible...just some caveats with it.
 

ac12

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Outdoor wildlife and indoor graduation are two very different situations.
  • Outside during the day.
    • Most of the consumer 70-300 lenses will be OK outside during the day.
  • Indoor gym/auditorium.
    • All of the consumer 70-300 lenses will struggle in the low light.
      • The max aperture at 300mm is probably at about f/5.6.
      • You will probably need to shoot at ISO 12800 or 25600.
      • VR will help to stabilize the lens+camera, NOT the subject. So even with VR, you need a high enough shutter speed to freeze the subject's movement, so at least 1/125.
    • In this low light condition you want/need a FAST lens to deal with the low light.
      • If your 100 yards distance is accurate, a 70-200/2.8 will be too short. I shoot that distance in soccer and the goalie requires a DEEP crop into the image, and many times it does not survive a DEEP crop.
      • Rent a 300/2.8. You will probably need to use a monopod to help hold up that kit.
        • Note: With a fixed lens, you NEED to understand the coverage, as you cannot zoom in/out. Is 300 too long, too short, or just right?
    • Sometimes they use a spot light on the podium and where they hand out the diplomas. Then you will need to set your camera to spot metering, and TEST that you know how it works BEFORE the shoot.
 
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OhioGuy

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The more I think about it, we will just purchase the photo/s from the vendor who's taking the shots during the event. However, I will buy the lens for my wildlife shots outside. :)

Thanks everyone!
 

RVT1K

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The more I think about it, we will just purchase the photo/s from the vendor who's taking the shots during the event. However, I will buy the lens for my wildlife shots outside. :)

Thanks everyone!


The 70-300 was the first tele I ever bought and paired it with my first DSLR, my D40.
I had lots of fun and success with that combo.
 
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OhioGuy

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What about a good lens hood for this one? Not sure of the size, or if there are better designs for outdoor shooting that I'm not aware of, if that makes sense.
 

ac12

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What about a good lens hood for this one? Not sure of the size, or if there are better designs for outdoor shooting that I'm not aware of, if that makes sense.

Find out what the Nikon hood number is then look on Amazon or eBay for that hood or a 3rd party replacement hood.
Caution: Some of the 3rd party plastic hoods do NOT fit well, and may require tinkering to fit your lens. ALL of my JJC plastic hoods required shaving to fit.​

There will ALWAYS be compromises when using a zoom.
Example when I use my 12-100, at 100mm that short 12mm hood is useless in blocking out side light, as it is WAY too short for a 100mm FL.​
Your 70-300 will not be as bad as my 12-100, but at 300mm the 70mm hood won't give you optimal light shading.
If you will only be shooting at 300mm, you could make a DiY hood extension, to give you more shading.
 

Derrel

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Yes...hoods for zooms are,at best, a compromise...
 

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