Nikon 200-500 vs. Nikon 300 prime vs. 3rd-party 150-600

Drive-By-Shooter

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in my prior post, i meant to say that i've come to appreciate the superiority of great primes. especially considering derrel's advice about cropping. i have only been shooting digital for 2 years. took me a while to get this.
obviously, fast extra long primes are prohibitively expensive for hobbyists.

how far will you be from the subject?
would a cropped 300 be better than a zoomed-in 150-600? probably.
if you cropped the 300 shot more, how would it compare to a cropped 600?
will you print larger than 8x10?

i tested the tamron and was very impressed (before splurging for the sport for potentially faster focusing at races).
it is my understanding that the sigma sport's optics are not significantly better than the contemporary's.

nikon has been having serious quality issues in recent years. read the many customer reviews on bhphotovideo.com about bad lenses and terrible company non-help.

n-photo magazine from the uk does a great job comparing lenses! they assemble articles into books (i have the first 2) and maybe the third one, out now, has the comparison you need!

i don't hesitate to shoot my big sig wide open. i test them wide open. for example, the sig 20mm failed, but the 24mm passed.
from my sig sport:
VIR_3334
_VIR7466
and when you have the wrong lens, you just shoot when a pretty woman smiles! DOF so small that face is sharp but not hair. having just bought it the day before, i did not know that i could pulled the zoom in without unlocking first. (i've learned much about post processing since and should re-do this.)
VIR_3481

both of these shots were very cropped. subjects were probably 250 and 300+ yards away. hand held.
_VIR7797
VIR_3168

should've locked the mirror and used the timer or remote, but still pretty sharp: _HOM9046 "UOO"

i hand held the lens all day for the races and only used a tripod for the moon shot.
 
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Drive-By-Shooter

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incredible shots!!
300 F4 AF-S samples... https://www.flickr.com/photos/coastalconn/albums/72157642471189154

Tamron 150-600 G2 Samples https://www.flickr.com/photos/coastalconn/albums/72157674045434472
Those 2 are chronological which include some testing.

Tamron 150-600 G1 samples... https://www.flickr.com/photos/coastalconn/albums/72157663773565110

The 200-500 is sharp, but I was not fond of the AF speed.
I haven't shot either sigma enough to form an opinion.

Camera labs has a huge review.. The verdict is here.. Tamron 150-600mm verdict (A022 G2) | Cameralabs
If you like staring at test charts, look here.. Tamron 150-600mm quality (A022 G2) | Cameralabs
You are the MAN!
 

coastalconn

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incredible shots!!
Thanks! I've been fortunate enough to shoot with many lenses so I have a pretty good database of various lenses. We are spoiled by choices today and having proper fine tune, technique and knowing your camera will get you the best results.
 

Xavier666

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I have both the new 200-500 and the older ('D') version of the 300 f4; You can't beat the 300 for sharpness, but the versatility of the 200-500 is awesome, and it has VERY good IQ; not quite 300 prime good, but damn close.
Which one would you use on a Nikon D7000 for zoo photography?
 

greybeard

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I have the non-vr af-s 300mm f4 and the Tamron 150-600 g1. I find the 300 much easier to handle. The 150-600 is a beast. The 300 will close focus to 4 ft while the 150-600 to 15 ft. The 300 at f4 is sharp in the center and Ok on the edges. The 150-600 @ 600 f6.3 is ok I'm the center and soft on the edges. For that reason I shoot it crop frame. The 150-600 is not as sharp as the 300 @ f/4 at any aperture. The 300 w the TC1.4 is still sharper than the 150-600. I'm keeping the 300… might sell the 150-600.
 
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Tailgunner

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incredible shots!!
Thanks! I've been fortunate enough to shoot with many lenses so I have a pretty good database of various lenses. We are spoiled by choices today and having proper fine tune, technique and knowing your camera will get you the best results.


Have you had a chance to try the new 300mm F4 PF or 500mm F4 PF?

My Nikon 200-500mm is hit or miss. So I bought the 300mm F4 PF. Its a night and day difference! I paired it with my 14e III and its still nice and sharp. I'm just curious if you had any experience with either of them?
 

Jeff G

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Hey Peeb, I can't compare the other lenses, but I have gotten pretty decent results with my Sigma 150-600. I really like this lens, it works great for air shows, wildlife, including birds in flight. Would make a great lens for stalking celebrities too. :biggrin-93:
 

DarkShadow

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I had both the sigma 150-600 Contemporary Sharp lens but the auto focus from time to time would stop working in the cold weather and almost always seem to expose on the bright side and a bit on the cool side using AWB. I eventually sold that got the Tamron 150-600 version 1 also very sharp and totally happy and none of the issues as with the sigma. I also added the Nikon AF-S 300mm f/4 if ED no VR for a lighter weight alternative and after seeing the sharpness even wide open smoother Bokeh i left the 150-600mm big lenses and sold that to. I do miss the reach the extra 300mm of reach but the Nikon prime is awesome and love the built in lens hood but of course come with obvious limitations of the longer end and the rare Occassion a bird is in your face fast you need to back up quickly and sometimes thats not possible with out breaking your butt as where not always standing in the ideal spot to move quickly.I still take the prime all day i cant comment on the Nikon 200-500 other then its a bulky beast as i handled one for a few minutes..YMMV.
 
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Braineack

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I liked the 150-600 Tamron (1st gen), but I was never impressed by the image quality when i had to focus on things further away, like things beyond 30-50' or so. Hard to explain, but it just seems to lack a lot of detail when focusing on a far subject.

Otherwise it was really sharp and worked well for the most part. I hear the G2 is much better in a lot of regards.



I always thought if I were to ever buy a long lens again, I'd go for a fixed aperture zoom or prime, like the 200-500 f/5.6 or 300 f/4.
 
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Peeb

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I went with the 200-500 f/5.6 and love it, but it is a lot of size/weight.

If I came into a stack of cash, I'd be tempted by the 500mm PF prime.
 

DarkShadow

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That's what i want the 500 PF f/5.6
 

Tailgunner

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I liked the 150-600 Tamron (1st gen), but I was never impressed by the image quality when i had to focus on things further away, like things beyond 30-50' or so. Hard to explain, but it just seems to lack a lot of detail when focusing on a far subject.

Otherwise it was really sharp and worked well for the most part. I hear the G2 is much better in a lot of regards.



I always thought if I were to ever buy a long lens again, I'd go for a fixed aperture zoom or prime, like the 200-500 f/5.6 or 300 f/4.

I never tried the G2 but I spent some time with the G1 doing some Whale watching once. My old 80-400 V1 wasn't cutting it so I rented the 150-600mm G1. It wasn't that bad out 100-200 yrds when I cropped in on a Whale.

The 200-500mm was hit or miss with me. It was beyond frustrating and so bought a 300mm PL w/1.4tc. This setup is very nice. Its sharp, compact, and lightweight! I mean its nothing compared to my 600mm F4 but its still nice. I may sell the 200-500mm and 300mm PL and buy the 500mm PF. Then keep that on my side as a secondary to my 600mm F4 w/1.4/1.7tc.
 

greybeard

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I have the 300 f/4 and the Tamron 150-600. The 300 is sharper and it will focus to 4 ft as opposed to 15 ft. The only downside to my 300 is that it lacks VR I never shoot it under 1/500th
 

DarkShadow

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And no rear glass element so it could be a issue with dust getting down inside if extra care is not taken and stay stuck in there. It's not a lens i would ever take off the Camera out in the field especially in dusty conditions otherwise its great. A Teleconverter on full time should prevent that but I gave up with the TC as it was slower to focus and back focus was a issue and to severe for me.
 
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