Tokina AT-X SD 300mm f/2.8 lens for Nikon manual focus
Its good small(in that category) lens but with today small VF manual tele focusing is not like with 35mm VF don't expect to have quick grab spot on focus at f2.8. I have AF version of that lens and I'm very happy user.Another thing is if your budget can add #275-325 more than you can scoop AF version of that lens and have metering and AF with your D50.
I used one but have sold it. It's good but not spectacular; it's worth noting out that a lot of the older 300/2.8 designs, of which this is one, have not been up to the standards of the newer models on digital, although they're still quite good. The older ones, including this Tokina and I believe the Nikkors of the same era, have eight elements in six groups. But optically the best approach is to get one of the newer eleven element/eight group designs including any AF-S version of the lens, or else to compromise a bit on aperture and get the f4 Nikkor, remembering to replace the stock tripod collar with something better. On the other hand, what you're likely to pay for the Tokina is tempting, no doubt about it.
I found that I simply did not use mine very much; it's not the most comfortable to handhold because although lightweight for a 300/2.8 it is very front-heavy, unlike the better balanced Tamron (the one with the olive green paint that scratches off easily), partly because more of the weight is toward the front of the lens itself and partly because of the immense metal lens hood (the Tamron lens hood is about an inch shallower and it is made of a durable kind of plastic). Also the Tokina manual focus lacks a pre-focus stop which I've decided is pretty much essential for manual focus on a 300/2.8.
For my own purposes, among the older 300/2.8 lenses, I'd either go with the manual focus Nikkor AIS version, or the green Tamron SP. I've had a couple of weeks with a Tamron and was generally very impressed by it, although having to focus in the "wrong" direction (i.e. opposite from Nikon lenses and Tokina lenses for Nikon) screwed me up a few times. If you can hack the focus direction the Tamron is good value for money.
Among used Nikkors with a newer (i.e. more digital-friendly) optical formula, the AF-S II 300/2.8 is relatively lightweight but has a poorly designed tripod mount; the AF-S I is heavier but has a better tripod mount. Whether you hand-hold or use support, you konw who you are . . .
Your right Daniel, the price is what drew me in, but i understand your reasoning....
Also, Mironv where can you find the Tokina 300 AF?
Thanks a bunch guys.