300mm f2.8's - narrowing it down

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by DJ Dunzie, Oct 2, 2008.

  1. Okay, so I think I'm sold on a 300mm f2.8. I've been trying to read as much as possible on it, and I've at least narrowed it down to the Nikkors - specifically the newer VR models and the AF-S II (ie/ I've eliminated the Sigma 120-300 and 300 prime, as well as the AF-ED Nikkor).

    Please, can anyone that's used these Nikkors comment on how they compare for SPORTS use specifically? I'll be using it for baseball, football, hockey, and more. Right now I have an AF-S 300/f4 that I've enjoyed, but would like the ability to shoot (1) at f2.8 at times and (2) with a TC at f4.

    HELP! :confused:
     
  2. fotographiq

    fotographiq Guest

    While I don't own ANY of those lenses, I have read a lot about them, and from what I've read I can tell you that, depending on how far away you are, they can be excellent lenses for sports.
     
  3. lovemy8514

    lovemy8514 Guest

    F/2.8 versus f/4 can make a large difference in subject isolation, which can make or break a shot.....
     
  4. Randy

    Randy

    May 11, 2006
    they would both be fine....you won't need vr for sports anyway
     
  5. BrendaC

    BrendaC

    Sep 24, 2007
    Pennsylvania
    I'm jealous! I want a 300mm 2.8 so bad!
     
  6. I agree with Randy. I never use the VR for sports. I have used the VR for stationary birds in low light with good success, but this may not be your interest.

    The 300mmVR version does have the nano-coating which is supposed to increase contrast, etc...

    YMMV.

    Can't really go wrong with either of these.
     
  7. Thanks all for the input so far.

    Yeah I'm definitely not interested in spending more for VR specifically, but was more curious as to what OPTICAL improvements - if any - the VR versions have on the older AF-S versions...

    And yes, the lens will be used almost exclusively for sports.
     
  8. fotographiq

    fotographiq Guest

    What kind of sports/how far will you be shooting?
     
  9. davewales

    davewales

    474
    Feb 18, 2008
    Wales
    Interesting comments re the VR. My thread on "VR,,,is it worth it ?" has had all apparently in favour that it is a benefit so, as a novice, I am curious why wouldn't you use it for sports ? I leave my VR on permanently even when turning the camera off.
    The 300mm is a super lens.
     
  10. Primarily hockey, baseball and football. But also some others (motorsports, cheerleading, soccer, ... whatever I get asked to shoot, predominantly at the youth to high school level).
     
  11. VR doesn't correct subject motion blur. The only thing that does that is faster shutter speeds... and therefore at those shutter speeds VR won't be any benefit for the most part.
     
  12. kiwi

    kiwi

    Jan 1, 2008
    Auckland, NZ
    DJ, from what I have seen here any of the AF-S non VR's do the business.

    I recently got the "older" AF-S I and certainly no complaints from me.
     
  13. Nikkor AIS

    Nikkor AIS

    Jun 5, 2008
    Alberta
    IMO the 300 2.8 may be a little short for your needs. It's beyond me why Nikon cant come up with a Nikkor 400 3.5 ED-IF AF. For Hockey the 300 2.8 may be a little long. Depending on whee you shoot from? For football/baseball a little short:tongue:. Maby pick up a used Nikkor 300 2.8 ED-IF AIS on the cheap and see if its enough reach. Dont forget the T.C 14B.:tongue:.

    Gregory
     
  14. I wouldn't cast the AF 300/2.8 IF-ED aside so quickly. Reading your signature I can see that you might have a bit more pocket money than I do but still, the IF-ED is a solid performer and uses the same glass as the newer versions.

    Here are a few pictures I took this year with mine.

    -1-
    D2H_4452.jpg

    -2-
    D2H_8880.jpg

    -3-
    D2H_0069.jpg

    -4-
    D2H_8855.jpg

    -5-
    D2H_9227.jpg

    -6-
    D2H_9357.jpg

    -7-
    D2H_3861.jpg

    -8-
    20080809_100256_4053_JPM.jpg

    -9-
    20080809_113948_4312_JPM.jpg

    -10-
    20080803_144353_3197_JPM.jpg

    -11-
    20080803_153822_3386_JPM.jpg
     
  15. What about the Sigma 300mm f/2.8 APO EX DG

    For much less money, does anyone rate this lens close to the Nikons?

    Thanks

    Mike
     
  16. Yeah I'm thinking you're probably right, although I'll be danged if I can find either the AF-S I or AF-S II anywhere.
     
  17. I think for hockey, on the D700 the 300 will work from the benches/boxes. I've been using the AF-S 300/f4 with good results at this location.

    U_D70_0227.jpg

    For football and even soccer I think you're right, that the 300 on FX isn't necessarily long enough, but if I upgrade my f4 to an f2.8 I can throw my 1.4X TC on it and still shoot at f4...

    I guess I've never considered the AIS enough, but they too are very hard to find.
     
  18. Pocket money? BAH! It's all about how much debt you're willing to get in... :Little:

    I've seen a few of the AF IF-ED's on the market to be honest, but from what I've read they aren't as sharp wide open, which is absolutely key for me. If I need to stop it down to f4 to get top results, my AF-S 300/f4 is VERY sharp wide open, and it's a sideways step.

    Still, despite that... those are phenominal shots! I cut myself on a couple.
     

  19. Again, done a lot of reading on this... my concerns are that it (1) needs to be stopped down a bit and (2) is more inconsistent focussing than the Nikkors. I've read many reviews of this lens against the Nikon counterparts and they all seem pretty consistent on this.
     
  20. Best of luck finding a 300 in the area, unless you're planning on buying it brand new. I really don't know if the VR version is better optically, but I've grown so used to it, that I struggle to live without it. If there's a cheaper version, with the exact same optics, I'd love to know though.