Nikon 55-200 vs. Nikon 55-300
I have found the 55-300 to be as sharp as my old 70-300 VR lens. It's certainly lighter but well built for its class. It's a bit more solid than the 55-200 and with a metal mount.
Focus speed is about the same as the 55-200. It has VR II as opposed to VR I in the 55-200, but it seems to take just a tad longer to kick in when compared to the 55-200. I don't find this a problem however. It does a very good job at 300mm.
Images are nice and contrasty. I'm pleased with the colours and sharpness.
I would say this lens is perhaps a tad better than the 55-200 which is a good thing since the 55-200 is no slouch.
The bokeh is nice like the 55-200 so I will use it for portraits. I really liked the 55-200, but, for not much more size and weight, you get an extra 100mm with slightly better IQ.
If you need a bit more focusing performance, I'd go with the 70-300 VR.
I would say that if you like the 55-200 but want a bit more reach, then you'll probably enjoy this lens (and save a bit of money too).