Nikon 70-300 active vs. normal switch


No longer a newbie, moving up!
Sep 19, 2012
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Istanbul, Turkey
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I just got a 70-300 lens yesterday thanks to very helpful feedbavk from members on this forum. I am going to try it this weekend and I would like to know what the Active vs. Normal switch is used for. Any instances when you use either switch wold be appreciated. I have watched some videos by photographers saying they never use the active switch and keep it on normal all the time.
Keep it on "Normal" most of the time. "Active" is to be used when you're shooting from a moving vehicle such as a car, boat, trains, etc....
Also, it's important to remember to turn VR off completely when it's attached to a tripod. Have fun with it though! I love my 70-300! It goes with me nearly everywhere!
The link KmH gave above is VERY useful stuff! One thing I learned with the older 80-400 VR, which is a different system than the VR in my 70-300 is this: when trying to hand-hold at RIDICULOUSLY slow speeds with a telephoto, like say 1/3 or 1/4 second indoors, I got better results by switching the VR from Normal mode to Active mode. I think that that was because at 1/3 and 1/4 second, the human body is almost as wobbly as a moving vehicle; the jiggling, and movement of the human body might, at such long speeds, be better controlled by the Active VR mode than the Normal mode. I found that if I leaned against a wall or corner for stability, I could hand-hold the 80-400VR down to as slow as 1/3 second indoors on still subjects inside! You have no cost to try the lens out and see how well it works. Also, in tough situations where the VR system might be challenged,shoot in 3-shot bursts in Continuous advance mode, so you only have to press the shutter release one,single time, but get 3 shots to pick from.

Anyway, enjoy the 70-300. It's a neat lens. I like using it.

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