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By mlev
#34442
Hi,

Currently I'm using:

Nikon D300
Nikkor 70-300mm 1:4-5.6
Tamron 2X Tele-Converter

I've managed to set $1500 aside in the last year in hopes of upgrading my lens. I understand it's not a great deal of money and I'll most likely be looking for something second hand. Can anyone suggest what my options may be in that limited price range? The main issue I'm having with my current setup is lack of sharpness (even without the tele-converter attached).
By Bluebird
#34445
Try looking at the Nikon 300mmf4.I see it out in the field a lot.Also try to get maybe a used Nikon 1.4 teleconverter be way better than the one you are using now.Ted
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By Birder2000
#34446
I use Canon, so I am no expert on this, but I think a Nikon AF VR Zoom-Nikkor 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6D ED or a Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/4D IF-ED would be two good options. I find eBay always has some good deals so you might want to look on there.
birder wrote:Also try to get maybe a used Nikon 1.4 teleconverter be way better than the one you are using now.
This is a good point. If you end up with a lens with an f/4 aperture or less, you could still have auto focus with a 1.4x. Investing on a teleconverter might also be a good idea if you can still auto focus.


I hope this helps! I asked about photography equipment on this forum when I was getting my DSLR and lens to replace my point and shoot, and the users of this forum helped me out so much!
By tindoc
#34447
The above post has got it right. The 300mm f 4 afs is razor sharp at f 8.0 and works well with the nikon 1.4 tele.
I've used it for years with great success. IMO it's the last stop before you go to the big glass.
Mine just sits in my bag now but I still can't seem to part with it.
By BChiker
#34457
Mark, given that you are using Nikon's D300, have you attempted a lens calibration using the AF TUNE function to adjust the back focus? If so, did you do it with the lens set to 300mm and focused at a typical shooting distance?

Take a look at: http://photo.net/nikon-camera-forum/00Xaip

Apologies if this is covering ground you've already explored.

David
By BChiker
#34460
I also stumbled across a site with resolution tests for various Nikon lenses at:

http://www.the-digital.picture.com/Reviews/

Nikkor 300 F/4D http://goo.gl/lH1NT

Nikkor 70-300 at 300mm http://goo.gl/pQM5a

The Nikkor 300 F/4D is significantly sharper than the 70-300 F/4-5.6G. At 300mm the zoom is just one big ball of fuzz.

There are also resolution tests with the 300 F/4D used in conjunction with the 1.4, 1.7, and 2.0 teleconverters. Actually the 300 F/4D with a 2x converter appears better than the zoom at 300mm.
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By tdadswell
#34461
Just a heads up. The 300mm F4 D is the older version that can only be bought used. The 300mmF4 AFS is the current version and is very fast at AF and very sharp even with 1.4 Tele. Most say its nearly indistinguishable from its big brother 2.8. I concur.

Comparing the 80-400Vr to the 300 F4 AFS prime. No comparison. Prime wins hands down. the zoom is quite fuzzy at the long end and slow.
By mlev
#34463
Thank you so much everyone for all the helpful information.
BChiker wrote:Mark, given that you are using Nikon's D300, have you attempted a lens calibration using the AF TUNE function to adjust the back focus? If so, did you do it with the lens set to 300mm and focused at a typical shooting distance?
I have not done this, I'm still really new to photography in general. Thank you for the info and the link!

This forum always seemed a little inactive to me but it seems when someone is looking for help everyone appears out of nowhere to the rescue. Very thankful!
By mlev
#34921
Just a quick follow-up for anyone interested.

I managed to get a Nikon 300m f/4D AF-S on consignment from Lens & Shutters for $950, an absolute steal in my opinion. I also got a used MB-D10 grip from Kerrisdale Cameras for $150. I couldn't be happier with my purchases. A quick sample shot with the new rig (handheld):

Image
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By tdadswell
#34930
Congrats on your new lens. You will love it for years to come... and it will probably be in your collection possibly for the rest of your photography days. It is that good. Even shooting wide open at f4... it is tack sharp. And wait till you try it with a Nikon 1.4 TC14E-II teleconverter...a great combo. Enjoy!!!

Oh yes, pairing it with the Tamron 2x teleconverter will probably not make you very happy...just a word of advice.

Nice handheld shot...

Terry
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By Birder2000
#35310
halfton wrote:will a 1.4 teleconverter and the 300mm lens work with a nikon d60
That would depend on which 300mm you are using. Which 300mm do you have? :)

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