Purchase Nikon's 70-300 mm lens?

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  • DaveyJDaveyJ Posts: 1,090Member
    edited September 2017
    The 200-500 is the best wildlife lens I have used. Daily I am shooting wildlife in stills and video that are way better than I have before. But the modest AF-P DX VR is pretty good. Yes, O'd wait probably until it goes back on sale. I followed it for some time before I got the two I got, purchased with a friend for $500 for two of the same, with his D7200, which he is very happy with. I took a real chance and got the D7500 when the 200-500 got here, and that became the fast, accurate, device, and I like it to use better than our D500. But just the new 70-300
    DX is pretty good. It sure will not handle low light as well as the 200-500, I do not know why?
    Post edited by DaveyJ on
  • HikerHiker Posts: 197Member
    DaveyJ said:

    The 200-500 is the best wildlife lens I have used. Daily I am shooting wildlife in stills and video that are way better than I have before. But the modest AF-P DX VR is pretty good. Yes, O'd wait probably until it goes back on sale. I followed it for some time before I got the two I got, purchased with a friend for $500 for two of the same, with his D7200, which he is very happy with. I took a real chance and got the D7500 when the 200-500 got here, and that became the fast, accurate, device, and I like it to use better than our D500. But just the new 70-300
    DX is pretty good. It sure will not handle low light as well as the 200-500, I do not know why?

    There is no really inexpensive option here. Even though the 200-500 is a really good buy for the money. The other good buy is either the Sigma or Tamron 150-600. I just want a replacement for the G version of the Nikon 70-300. And I wish Sigma would revamp it's 50-150mm f2.8. The 50-100 is out from all the reviews I'm reading about focus issues. Sigh...need to win lotto!!
  • BVSBVS Posts: 440Member

    I've read some discontent with the AF compatibility of the new 70-300 with older bodies. I seem to recall the claim that the lens forgets where it was focused or some such. I'm interested in how well it works with the D7200.

    I tried it on my D7100 and it worked just fine. It actually works better than the DX version since it has a VR switch on the side so I could turn VR on and off, whereas I couldn't with the DX version since it doesn't have a switch. The only 'issue' is that when the camera goes into standby the focus resets. Personally, I didn't have any problem with it, but if it's bothersome you can just lengthen the standby timeout duration in your camera settings.
    D7100, 85 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 35 1.8G DX, Tokina 12-28 F4, 18-140, 55-200 VR DX
  • BVSBVS Posts: 440Member
    Ton14 said:

    As everybody know the 70-300mm is actualy a 70-250mm because the last 50mm are useless due to the image quality. The VR version I have used from the D70 till now and is quite good on a DX (D7200). On the D600 the full potential came out because it is a FF lens, but still the softness at the end. If the 70-300 AF-P FX VR does not have that softness at the last 50mm, it is mine.

    I would try out the new 70-300 FX if you can. It's nice and sharp at 300mm.

    I actually preferred the FX version over the DX version on my D7100. The heavier weight felt more balanced, I could turn VR on/off, and the slightly faster aperture at 300mm was welcome.

    D7100, 85 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 35 1.8G DX, Tokina 12-28 F4, 18-140, 55-200 VR DX
  • Ton14Ton14 Posts: 696Member
    Thank you for the info, I will try one in the shop first.
    User Ton changed to Ton14, Google sign in did not work anymore
  • HikerHiker Posts: 197Member
    I went to my "local", quotes because Tempe Camera is 2 hours south of me, last Tuesday. The gent put on the new 70-300 on a 7200. Felt the same as my current one, obviously. The gent couldn't figure out what I was saying when I told him my G version was not sharp above 250mm. Oh well.. held a Tamron 70-200 f2.8 in my hands and pretty much ruled out going in that direction. Man that was heavy! Also held a Tamron 150-600 in my hands. Felt totally comfortable holding it for some reason. Decisions, decisions!!!
  • NSXTypeRNSXTypeR Posts: 2,286Member
    Unsurprisingly, looks like the 70-300 AF-P is a great lens.

    http://www.dslrbodies.com/lenses/nikon-lens-reviews/nikkor-zoom-lens-reviews/nikon-70-300mm-f45-56-af-p.html

    Too bad it is not wholly compatible with the D7000.
    Nikon D7000/ Nikon D40/ Nikon FM2/ 18-135 AF-S/ 35mm 1.8 AF-S/ 105mm Macro AF-S/ 50mm 1.2 AI-S
  • BVSBVS Posts: 440Member
    NSXTypeR said:

    Unsurprisingly, looks like the 70-300 AF-P is a great lens.

    http://www.dslrbodies.com/lenses/nikon-lens-reviews/nikkor-zoom-lens-reviews/nikon-70-300mm-f45-56-af-p.html

    Too bad it is not wholly compatible with the D7000.

    Yes, it's a good lens. I liked it better than the DX version on my D7100. The DX version is just too light for the D7xxx bodies.

    Personally, I wasn't bothered by the defocus on timeout issue, although I guess it depends on how you're using it. Of course, there's always the option to extend the timeout, if that option is available on the D7000.

    D7100, 85 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 35 1.8G DX, Tokina 12-28 F4, 18-140, 55-200 VR DX
  • DaveyJDaveyJ Posts: 1,090Member
    edited September 2017
    I do know in Yellowstone the 70-300 lens people were having less results than those with the 200-500 Nikon or the Canons. I did not see one Tamron G2 150-600, which surprised me, also only one Sigma Contemporary. All Nikon or Canons for the big lens. And as always, best results when not anyone else was around. Wolves and Mountain Lions are very wary of people, Bison could care less.
    Post edited by DaveyJ on
  • HikerHiker Posts: 197Member
    DaveyJ said:

    I do know in Yellowstone the 70-300 lens people were having less results than those with the 200-500 Nikon or the Canons. I did not see one Tamron G2 150-600, which surprised me, also only one Sigma Contemporary. All Nikon or Canons for the big lens. And as always, best results when not anyone else was around. Wolves and Mountain Lions are very wary of people, Bison could care less.

    I am leaning more and more in the direction of the Nikon 200-500 to use on the D7200. When the time comes, we shall see. Both the Nikon and Tamron are close in price. My only concern is, if I do go to Patagonia, will the Nikon be to much in some cases and will I miss the shot. I say this because a Puma came within 50 feet of my friends when it came out of the bushes. Will even the 150-600 be to much??!!
  • NSXTypeRNSXTypeR Posts: 2,286Member
    BVS said:


    Yes, it's a good lens. I liked it better than the DX version on my D7100. The DX version is just too light for the D7xxx bodies.

    Personally, I wasn't bothered by the defocus on timeout issue, although I guess it depends on how you're using it. Of course, there's always the option to extend the timeout, if that option is available on the D7000.

    In theory a D7000 would work with the new AF-P 70-300, I'm just not sure what the handling characteristics of having a focus timeout actually means. Does it mean that there's a focus point that is set to "0" and if the focus times out then the lens sets it to that set point every time?

    Nikon D7000/ Nikon D40/ Nikon FM2/ 18-135 AF-S/ 35mm 1.8 AF-S/ 105mm Macro AF-S/ 50mm 1.2 AI-S
  • HikerHiker Posts: 197Member
    I haven't replaced my G version of the 70-300 yet, life gets in the way. So after hiking in the Grand Canyon Saturday, 3.5 miles round trip, I was waiting for my friends to come back up Bright Angel Trail after we went down South Kaibab (they did 18 miles!). Anyway..there were some Desert Big Horn Sheep on a ledge near the Bright Angel Trail. I shot over 100 pics of them. This moring I downloaded the pics and when I went into the info, it said my ISO was 2,000 (my max setting on the D7200) for a majority of the shots. Now it was mid afternoon, around 1:00-1:30. I'm confused as to why this happened. I'm going to guess it's my camera settings. But even so. This lens is just not sharp. And most of my shots were at 250mm and f9-11. Sigh...
  • HikerHiker Posts: 197Member
    I figured this out...what an idiot I was!! I shot in Aperture mode and NOT Shutter!! I'm shooting at 250mm and my shutter speed was below 1/250 sec! Very few shots were sharp...Maybe I was tired and wasn't thinking straight, which was obvious..
  • PhotobugPhotobug Posts: 5,751Member
    Hiker said:

    I figured this out...what an idiot I was!! I shot in Aperture mode and NOT Shutter!! I'm shooting at 250mm and my shutter speed was below 1/250 sec! Very few shots were sharp...Maybe I was tired and wasn't thinking straight, which was obvious..

    The great thing Hiker about this error, we have all done something similar and each of us has kicked our self in the butt. Consider this a learning experience and I guarantee you won't make that mistake again.

    Tip: After not using my camera for a while I will often take a few pictures and look at them on the LCD screen and toggle through the display to check white balance and double check the shutter speed and aperture. That avoids shooting an entire session at the wrong settings.
    D750 & D7100 | 24-70 F2.8 G AF-S ED, 70-200 F2.8 AF VR, TC-14E III, TC-1.7EII, 35 F2 AF D, 50mm F1.8G, 105mm G AF-S VR | Backup & Wife's Gear: D5500 & Sony HX50V | 18-140 AF-S ED VR DX, 55-300 AF-S G VR DX |
    |SB-800, Amaran Halo LED Ring light | MB-D16 grip| Gitzo GT3541 + RRS BH-55LR, Gitzo GM2942 + Sirui L-10 | RRS gear | Lowepro, ThinkTank, & Hoodman gear | BosStrap | Vello Freewave Plus wireless Remote, Leica Lens Cleaning Cloth |
  • HikerHiker Posts: 197Member
    Photobug said:

    Hiker said:

    I figured this out...what an idiot I was!! I shot in Aperture mode and NOT Shutter!! I'm shooting at 250mm and my shutter speed was below 1/250 sec! Very few shots were sharp...Maybe I was tired and wasn't thinking straight, which was obvious..

    The great thing Hiker about this error, we have all done something similar and each of us has kicked our self in the butt. Consider this a learning experience and I guarantee you won't make that mistake again.

    Tip: After not using my camera for a while I will often take a few pictures and look at them on the LCD screen and toggle through the display to check white balance and double check the shutter speed and aperture. That avoids shooting an entire session at the wrong settings.
    Funny thing is, I checked my histograms and sharpness. They looked fine on the screen. But didn't check all the other important info. The only shots obviously that were blown out was the Sun shining off the rocks in the Canyon. Oh well. Guess I'll just have to go back and look for them again soon!
  • DaveyJDaveyJ Posts: 1,090Member
    Shutterbug is right. You need to check your LCD screen anytime Shooting under different conditions. Not sure what lens this was with the D7200. I assume the 70-300. I do not own a single 70-300 (7 of them in various renditions) that will compare to the bigger new 200-500 5.6 now easily my favorite wildlife lens. I use the 16-80 most of the time on my D7200 but once in awhile switch to the light quite new 70-300 AF-P DX VR lens. But I have very little trust in that lens compared to the 200-500 which if course is considerably bigger. However when 70-300 is OK then it is OK. I usually set the ISO at 800 unless the lighting requires More or less. Last night I photographed Whitetail Deer at 6000 to 10000 ISO. In that case you better hope your backgraound is not Sky as the black noise will be rough. The photos looked good.

    Histogram are in my mind quite worthless, and I zoom in on the LCD screen to assess relative sharpness but in much light unless you are using some kind of screen shade, I recommend a Tilley Hat from Canada. Amazing how many in the west were using those hats. They have front and back chin and back if the head straps to keep them from blowing off. The traditional western hat is OK, but a long way from the Tilley Hat. Still it is darn hard to see what you have until you get it on the big screen. Generally speaking if your Nikon focus chime goes off to say the focus grid is right.....I never use the cameras without changing to a single focus grid. Everyone I know comes to shoot that way. The multiple focus grids letting the camera choose is a bad deal. Having shot race cars and race bikes for years I am certain this is best. However, if you shoot out of focus, you have nothing but a crop failure. When I shoot D500, D7200, D7500 (my favorite by far) I switch between aperature for all stills, except fireworks or moon shoots, and manual in video. When you are faced with sun shinning of rocks the only thing I know is changing your position and if this is not possible, it could help to zoom in more and avoid the rocks bouncing sun.
  • HankBHankB Posts: 222Member
    DaveyJ said:

    .....I never use the cameras without changing to a single focus grid. Everyone I know comes to shoot that way. The multiple focus grids letting the camera choose is a bad deal....

    AND use Back Button Focus (the settings on the D7200 are 1) set "AF activation" to "AF-ON only" and 2) set "Assign AE-L/AF-L button" to "AF-ON"). The camera focuses only when and on what YOU tell it to with an easy press with the right thumb. Very short learning curve.

    Your keepers will increase even after considering the occasional stupid move of forgetting to focus.
  • HikerHiker Posts: 197Member
    DaveyJ said:

    Shutterbug is right. You need to check your LCD screen anytime Shooting under different conditions. Not sure what lens this was with the D7200. I assume the 70-300. I do not own a single 70-300 (7 of them in various renditions) that will compare to the bigger new 200-500 5.6 now easily my favorite wildlife lens. I use the 16-80 most of the time on my D7200 but once in awhile switch to the light quite new 70-300 AF-P DX VR lens. But I have very little trust in that lens compared to the 200-500 which if course is considerably bigger. However when 70-300 is OK then it is OK. I usually set the ISO at 800 unless the lighting requires More or less. Last night I photographed Whitetail Deer at 6000 to 10000 ISO. In that case you better hope your backgraound is not Sky as the black noise will be rough. The photos looked good.

    Histogram are in my mind quite worthless, and I zoom in on the LCD screen to assess relative sharpness but in much light unless you are using some kind of screen shade, I recommend a Tilley Hat from Canada. Amazing how many in the west were using those hats. They have front and back chin and back if the head straps to keep them from blowing off. The traditional western hat is OK, but a long way from the Tilley Hat. Still it is darn hard to see what you have until you get it on the big screen. Generally speaking if your Nikon focus chime goes off to say the focus grid is right.....I never use the cameras without changing to a single focus grid. Everyone I know comes to shoot that way. The multiple focus grids letting the camera choose is a bad deal. Having shot race cars and race bikes for years I am certain this is best. However, if you shoot out of focus, you have nothing but a crop failure. When I shoot D500, D7200, D7500 (my favorite by far) I switch between aperature for all stills, except fireworks or moon shoots, and manual in video. When you are faced with sun shinning of rocks the only thing I know is changing your position and if this is not possible, it could help to zoom in more and avoid the rocks bouncing sun.

    It is the 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 G IF-ED AF-SED (info from the box). I did check my sharpness and they appeared sharp, below 300mm. I should have tried, since I had the time, to switch to Shutter. And I only use Back Button Focusing!! I'm always checking histograms, but that's habit. I'm only 2 hours away, so I have some more opportunities!! Oh, and I was using AF-C and 9 point, with switching to single point from time to time.
  • DaveyJDaveyJ Posts: 1,090Member
    edited November 2017
    In the last few days I photographed Whitetail Deer in my clearing in front of my house. I used the 200-500 Nikkor, several of my 70-300s and the 16-80Nikkor. All of the 70-300s saw the scenes as less contrasty, softer in terms of sharpness, etc., the two I thought were by far the best were taken with the 200-500 and the 16-80. As I have been repeatedly been far less impressed with the 70-300s I was braced for poorer results, but not as marked as the results there. Over the years I have taken some great photos with the Nikon 70-300s and I own NINE of them. Two are them are the recent 70-300 AF-P DX VR.

    What I did not do though is use the D7200 or D7500 on all the photos and also the D500. Maybe the camera influenced things to a degree? My conclusion is I trust the 16-80 for scenes. It is a great lens. The 200-500 is totally awesome. It is my go to lens for telephoto. I surely have my doubts for the 70-300 AF-P DX VR lens. Both lens are questionable. One is now in Oregon being tested by a business partner. So right now I have a gap between 80 and 200. I sold my 70-300 Nikkor 2.8. Maybe I should have kept it. The weight of the 200-500 is now totally accepted by me and either handheld or an a Arca Swiss Mount tripod, it is THE long glass I always wanted! The 200-500 is big and heavy but I sure can manage it. With the Bkack Rapid Strap and the Kirk tripod shoe plate it is quick to raise and photograph and also allows me to let it hang by my side when I am doing something or plain decide it is time to rest my grip. I would also conclude that the D7500 is by far the easiest to use!
    Post edited by DaveyJ on
  • BVSBVS Posts: 440Member
    DaveyJ said:

    I surely have my doubts for the 70-300 AF-P DX VR lens. Both lens are questionable.

    You should try the new FX 70-300 if you haven't already. Personally, I got much better results than with the DX version, and it's sharp at 300mm.

    D7100, 85 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 35 1.8G DX, Tokina 12-28 F4, 18-140, 55-200 VR DX
  • DaveyJDaveyJ Posts: 1,090Member
    I do think my FX 70-300 last generation is every bit as good as the new DX I tried the New 70-300 FX and thought is was good enough to buy and try. Better than the DX AF-P! But I could not afford two lens and two cameras all at once! Now I have moved on to other purchases now that I have my cameras upgraded. I would buy the new FX 70-300 way over the 70-200 2.8!
  • heartyfisherheartyfisher Posts: 3,186Member
    Hiker said:

    I figured this out...what an idiot I was!! I shot in Aperture mode and NOT Shutter!! I'm shooting at 250mm and my shutter speed was below 1/250 sec! Very few shots were sharp...Maybe I was tired and wasn't thinking straight, which was obvious..

    I have done it enough times too ;-) so P mode is my default .. and I go S or A when I want something specific :-)

    Moments of Light - D610 D7K S5pro 70-200f4 18-200 150f2.8 12-24 18-70 35-70f2.8 : C&C very welcome!
    Being a photographer is a lot like being a Christian: Some people look at you funny but do not see the amazing beauty all around them - heartyfisher.

  • CEBluecloudsCEBlueclouds Posts: 1,943Member
    Recently got gifted the Nikon 70-300 f/4.5-5.6 af-p FX lens... it’s quite a useful lens with acceptable performance when you need to avoid bulkiness, etc
    CHU_3858
  • CEBluecloudsCEBlueclouds Posts: 1,943Member
    edited June 2018
    https://flic.kr/s/aHsmmVhYuD ..some more sample pictures
    Post edited by CEBlueclouds on
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 2,881Member

    https://flic.kr/s/aHsmmVhYuD ..some more sample pictures

    Looks good. I have the DX 70-300, and for the price I'm pretty happy with it. It's not quite as pixel peeping sharp as some of my other lenses, but the fast AF is great, and considering my limited need for a long zoom it does the job.
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