longer distance zoom wanted.

bcarlson87

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Greetings.

I currently shoot with a Nikon d5100.
I have the standard lens it came with... zooms up to 55mm.
I also have purchased one additional lens its a nikon with a 55mm-200mm zoom range.

I want something that shoots a farther distance. I'm fairly new to DSLR and not experienced with good quality lens. I was hoping to keep it a 52mm width so my filters will work on it, but not completely a selling point.

I will mostly be using it for wildlife/landscapes/sunset-sunrise/scenery kinds of shots.


Thanks for any input you may have.
 

Big Mike

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Welcome to the forum.

Many camera and lens companies have one (or more) versions of a 70-300mm zoom lens. They are often quite affordable, but of course, the ones that cost less, tend to be of lower build quality and provide lower image quality.

Nikon AF Zoom Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6G Lens (Black) 1928 B&H
Nikon AF-S VR Zoom-NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED 2161 B&H

The one with 'VR' is going to be a better option, but it's obviously more expensive.

You didn't mention a budget, but we could certainly find you some options that cost as much as nice used car.
Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 600mm f/4G ED VR AF Lens 2173 B&H Photo Video
 

sm4him

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Really, really depends on your budget.

What is it that the 55-200 is NOT doing for you? Not long enough? When do you find that limits you? Is it not sharp enough? Are you sure you are doing what it takes to get the best quality possible out of the lens to start with?

I'm kinda surprised that you're wanting something LONGER for shooting landscapes, sunrise/set and scenery photos...generally, those are more often shot with WIDER lenses. I often use my kit lens (18-55) for those kinds of shots.

For the wildlife--longer reach is definitely helpful (though, as has been discussed often around here, you can do quite a lot with 200mm...). But the budget is SO critical.
You can get a Nikon 70-300mm for relatively little (as good lenses go) and I love mine.
Or you can get a Nikon 800mm for more than every car I've ever owned COMBINED. (Yes, I buy really old, cheap cars...but still. :D )

You can get a teleconverter, 1.4x, 1.7x or 2.0x to extend the reach of your current lens. Some get really good results this way--I don't, and I pretty much never use mine.

I recently ended up upgrading from the 70-300 to a Sigma 150-500mm. I *love* it, but I'd add that I am actually quite glad that I *learned* wildlife photography with a shorter lens (the 55-200 first, and then the 70-300). It forced me to learn good technique, good stalking skills, etc so that when I upgraded, I already had the skill set to take advantage of the better glass.
 

KmH

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JDFlood

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For the first few years I got into photography I was pretty hung up on tele photos and of course for birds and distant critters, that is what you need. Good telephoto glass to rival a normal 50mm lens is going to cost you, like $5k or more. There are lots that are cheaper, but there is a lot of compromise. There are good lenses like the 70mm - 300 that are cheap, but they are not of the caliber of the more expensive stuff. Just thought you might consider trying a wide angle before getting into stronger teles. A 28mm or 24mm would be relatively inexpensive and appropriate for landscape, street and general photography. When you use a tele you are putting a lot of air in between you and the subject and artificially foreshortening the foreground. Since you said you were new to a DSLR, just thought I might suggest experimenting a little more before heading down that path. It could be the right path for you, so just a thought.

In other than wildlife and sports, my general rule is to choose the focal length of the lens in accordance with the depth of field I want, not the field of view I want. I get the field of view by walking to the right position. This one thing has improved my photography a great deal. JD
 

Tailgunner

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Welcome to the forum.Many camera and lens companies have one (or more) versions of a 70-300mm zoom lens. They are often quite affordable, but of course, the ones that cost less, tend to be of lower build quality and provide lower image quality.Nikon AF Zoom Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6G Lens (Black) 1928 B&HNikon AF-S VR Zoom-NIKKOR 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED 2161 B&HThe one with 'VR' is going to be a better option, but it's obviously more expensive. You didn't mention a budget, but we could certainly find you some options that cost as much as nice used car. Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 600mm f/4G ED VR AF Lens 2173 B&H Photo Video
This^^I think a 70-300mm VR is going to be your best bang for the buck. You can pick on up used or refurbished around $299-350.
 

manicmike

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Not to be one of those people, but if you need something with a little more speed than the Nikon, I've got a Sigma 100-300 f4 for sale in the buy/sell section.
 

goodguy

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Another vote for the Nikon 70-300mm VR, on a croped sensor camera like yours this is really converted to 105-450mm and thats a very good reach.
I own this lens and couldnt be happier with it, its very sharp and relatively not expensive.
 

raventepes

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I'll put my vote in for the 70-300 VR, as well. I've been using mine for a few years now and I have no complaints. Solid build, excellent optics. You really just can't go wrong for the price. The next option would be a lens that I really want (and assuming you have the $2700 to throw down on it), the new 80-400.
 

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