300 f/4 AF-S with 1.7x TC, AF performance on D300 ?

Started Nov 9, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Keith Aitken
Veteran MemberPosts: 6,564
Re: 300 f/4 AF-S with 1.7x TC, AF performance on D300 ?
In reply to monographix, Nov 9, 2012

You did not mention a budget . . .

There are airshow and sport lens alternatives, but more expensive - ( think 200-400 f/4 )

The 1.7x is a good TC as long as you accept the drawbacks, and as long as you really, really need that extra 90mm ( over the 1.4x ).  The 1.7 drawbacks are that in using it with the 300 f/4, you go immediately to f/6.3 and for best IQ with this TC, you should stop down further, limiting your shutter speed or creating a need for higher ISO, unless you are in excellent light. Fortunately, the 300 f/4 is one of Nikon's finest, so it manages to do the best it can with TCs.

Generally, I find that cropping a 300 f/4 + 1.4x image works out as well as using a straight 300 f/4 + 1.7 image, taking into account better AF, higher IQ and faster shutter. With the 1.4, you have more accurate AF, wider aperture and potentially sharper pics because you are shooting at a slightly shorter FL, resulting in less camera shake if you are handholding. The 1.7 introduces the necessity of a monopod/tripod for best results, though handholding is still feasible.

When you have a spare few hours, do a lot of searching here at dp - there has been a huge amount of opinion and user experience re the 300 f/4 plus TCs . . . I am not completely anti-1.7x but it is a compromise piece of equipment, although there are users here who take wonderful pics - look around.

We have all been seduced by the temptations of longer and longer range shooting, but it is harder work to coax good images from the 1.7x

Good luck,


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