Can't decide: Nikon 200-500 for Tamron 150-600 G2....

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sirhawkeye64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,279
Can't decide: Nikon 200-500 for Tamron 150-600 G2....

So I was out doing birding with a photo group this weekend, and can't decide now whether I want to get a 200-500 (Nikon) or the Tamron 150-600 G2. I will say the price difference isn't that big to me, so cost is not an issue between the two.

Weight is also comparable although one is slightly heavier than the other, but in all honesty, with a lens of this type, I will most likely be on a monopod at least, and a tripod if possible.

I would be shooting this on a crop sensor body most of the time, but might adapt it to my Z camera if the subject's are not flying birds or are other predictable animals / slow moving animals.

For the pro/con, below, I'll assume that it's being used on a DX/crop camera even though these are probably not specific to that format...


Pro: Both wider at the short end (150 vs 200mm) and narrower at longer FLs (ie. 500 vs 600mm). Although I doubt that 50mm on the short end, and 100mm on the long end is going to make a big difference, although on a crop-sensor body it might as this is multiplied by 1.5x

Con: VC may not be as good as the Nikon

Con: Variable aperture and can be really slow at 6.3 especially on a crop body


Con: 200-500mm (so more like 300-750mm on a crop sensor body)

Con: I think this is heavier than the Tamron, despite being shorter when extended

Pro: VR seems to be better than the Tamron

Pro: Constant aperture (although probably still slow on a crop sensor body, like f/9, which when shooting BIFs I like to keep it under f/11 for sure, and usually at least one stop down from wide open in most cases).

Thoughts? I've shot with both. I like aspects of both. I feel I can get slightly sharper shots with the Nikon, probably because the VR is better (IMO) despite being shorter on the long end. I'm also wondering if the Nikon is sharper than the Tamron between 200-500mm.

(I have contemplated getting one of these, and then the AFP 70-300 again, for shorter-range stuff, like stuff between 100-250mm.  At this event I was able to shoot with a 500 and 600 prime, but those are out of my price range and honestly, I like the flexibility of a zoom.  Plus I'm more of a beginner when it comes to wildlife, but I want a lens I can grow into and not be upgrading every year to a different lens.)

 sirhawkeye64's gear list:sirhawkeye64's gear list
Fujifilm X-T20 Nikon D7500 Nikon Z7 Nikon Z7 II Fujifilm XF 23mm F2 R WR +14 more
Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2
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