Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G

Started Dec 16, 2011 | Discussions
balabharat
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Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
Dec 16, 2011

HI,

I am looking for a Telephoto lense.I have 35mm f1.8, 18-105VR lenses.I am looking for telephoto lense with in $300. I am OK with the limitations of budget telephoto lenses as i am a casual photographer.I plan to shoot animals, potraits etc with this telephoto lense. Initially I considered to buy either 55-200 lense, but prefered 55-300VR for extra reach. But after reading reviews i felt 70-300VR is good. But, 70-300VR is out of my budget.

So decided to go for 55-300VR, but i came to know that 55-300VR autofocus is very slow and not good for moving objects. Then got a thought Why can't i buy 70-300G and save money!

So here goes the question.How good is 70-300G? Only VR is the difference? I know the importance of VR while taking photos with full zoom.

If i canot take photos of moving objects with 55-300VR then will 70-300G work out for me?

Too many questions. Sorry for confusing.

Please help me in taking decision.Isaw the photos taken by my friend with 70-300G. I particularly liked the colors compared to photos taken with my 18-105.

blue_cheese
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to balabharat, Dec 16, 2011

So decided to go for 55-300VR, but i came to know that 55-300VR autofocus is very slow and not good for moving objects. Then got a thought Why can't i buy 70-300G and save money!

I have a 55-300 and I want to clarify to you what your takeaway should be in terms of "autofocus is very slow and not good for moving objects". It is slow to aquire focus, not track it. The problem is getting focus on small fast moving things that quickly move in/out of the AF sensor you are using. While the lens is trying to focus on the subject, if it moves out of the AF sensor the lens will start to search for focus on a new subject. It generally causes it to go to infinity to focus on the background, you will have a hard time finding the subject again especially if it is small thing like a bug or a small bird at 300mm by then you would have missed your shot. A faster AF is that the lens would be faster to aquire focus and reducing the time the subject has to run away from the AF sensor used. A faster AF would also do the whole focus search faster so there is a slightly better likelyhood that you will find the subject if you loose it. Note however that once you loose focus at 300mm you will have a hard time finding a small blurry thing in the viewfinder anyway.

So the 55-300 is fine for moving objects if you get focus lock on them. Outdoor sports, moving cars, reasonably close or large flying (goose, eagle, seagul, pigeon, etc) birds are not an issue for the 55-300. The problem is with small things such as a flying baseball, flying dragonfly or other insect, a very fast moving small bird such as a sparrow or something else like that because they are small they quickly move out of the focus points.

Consider also that 70-300 is also considerably bulker and heavier to be cumbersome for trips and lightweight travel. I love my 55-300 and accept it with its slow AF. I have never used a 70-300 so I am not sure where it stands on focus speed, i hear it is supposed to be faster than the 55-300 but is still not anything to write home about. I have used both the 17-55 and 24-70 AF-S lenses, and those are less than a second to find focus, it is almost unbelievable how they do that even in indoor lighting. Try out the lenses you are interesed in at your local store and see how they compare in AF speed.

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balabharat
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to blue_cheese, Dec 16, 2011

Got it. Thanks for making the things clear for me. Most of my fears with respect to 55-300VR are cleared.

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JIMBO3031NIKON
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to balabharat, Dec 17, 2011

Besides considering the G version or the 55-300 have you considered a refurbished 70-300vr? Or used at KEH? I got one used "LN-" (like new minus) a good price recently and used it for the first time in Orlando in the past two weeks with good results (haven't downloaded the pics yet).

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Sagittarius
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to JIMBO3031NIKON, Dec 17, 2011

Hi

One of the differences between 55-300 and 70-300 is that 55-300 is not internal focus (IF) which means that front element is turning when focusing. It makes using polarizing filter difficult
--
Best regards

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blue_cheese
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to Sagittarius, Dec 17, 2011

While this is a very valid point, I would really like to see some examples of effective polarizer use on a telephoto length such as 300. So far I have seen just one of a frog near a puddle right after rain where the polarizer cut out the water reflection to give a very "fresh" look.

I reallly think that the ability to use polarizers is best reserved to lenths of below 50mm (in particular less than 35mm)

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pdcm
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to blue_cheese, Dec 17, 2011

It is not correct that polarizers work best on wider angle lenses. The problem is that as the angle of view increases so does the the effect of the polarizer due to the angle of the light source (the sun) being so different at the edge of the frame, which results in a colour shift towards said edge. The wider the angle lens the worse the problem. This can be very different to the centre of the image. So polarizers work best with medium and telephoto lenses. However, as most telephoto lenses have a smaller f/ number and polarizers cut down the light one has to be aware of this.

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Leon Obers
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to balabharat, Dec 17, 2011

balabharat wrote:

So here goes the question.How good is 70-300G? Only VR is the difference? I know the importance of VR while taking photos with full zoom.

The very cheap 70-300G is not of the same league in quality as the 70-300mm VR. I think it is even (far) more bad than the 55-300mm.

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Leon Obers

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Catallaxy
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to balabharat, Dec 18, 2011

The 55-300 VR is going to be a better lens overall than the 70-300 G (non-VR).

First, you have VR, which helps a lot with static (not moving) subjects - like a squirrel is a tree.

The optics on the 55-300 VR are better than the 70-300 G as well.

Have you looked into the Tamron 70-300 VC? It can sometimes be found in that price range and it is better than they 55-300 VR. Similarly the 70-300 VR can be found refurbished for about $400 - that is what I paid for mine two months ago.

Good luck!

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Catallaxy

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Hansa Yindee
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to Catallaxy, Dec 18, 2011

.
When the 70-300VR was first introduced I picked one
up from B&H and still use it today in Thailand, Laos
and Cambodia.
If you can not afford the VR version I would simply
wait until you can. Other wise it's a waist of money.

Inserted photo was taken just down the road from
my place in a dark triple canopy jungle.
Monkey jumped into a spot of sun light and I fired.

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 Hansa Yindee's gear list:Hansa Yindee's gear list
Nikon D50 Nikon D1X Nikon D300 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8G ED-IF Nikon AF Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D +8 more
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balabharat
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Re: Nikkor 55-300VR VS 70-300G
In reply to Hansa Yindee, Dec 18, 2011

HI All,

Thanks a lot for your suggestions.

I ordered Nikkor 55-300 VR lense on bhphoto at $247. I think its a good deal.I don't want to invest more for 70-300VR as my budget is limited.

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