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70-300mm VR

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by Farmergirl, Aug 3, 2007.

  1. I am looking to buy a telephoto lens and was considering the Nikon 70-300mm VR. I was thinking of the 18-200 but I already have the 18-70mm and have the lower range covered. TI am looking at it to take pics of the boys on the sports fields and hockey arenas. What do you all think of this lens or do you have other suggetions?

    Thanks Sarah
  2. headgear


    Apr 6, 2007
    I have the 70-300VR and love it for outside well lit events. I have found it excellant for baseball, and other outdoor activities that require some focal length. I haven't shot hockey before but I have shot basketball indoors and I needed a much faster lens than the 70-300VR for this. My 85mm 1.8 was needed with high ISO to just get by in this venue(poorly lit gyms). I would think a 80-200 2.8 would be a better choice for hockey than the 70-300VR. If you do some homework you might find a used 80-200 for slightly more than a new 70-300VR. The 80-200 will be much heavier with no VR but the VR won't buy you shutter speed to stop action. Good luck.
  3. I agree. I just picked up a 70-300Vr and it's a great performer, nice and light, but is limited where the light gets low if you are trying to shoot sports unless you can crank the ISO way up. Any of the various 70/80-200/2.8s would be a better choice. If you don't want to go for the VR version, you can get a good deal on a used 70-200 Sigma or 80-200 AFD for the $600-650 range. They can be hand held or used with a monopod easily.
  4. bender73

    bender73 Guest

    great replies. the 70-300 VR is a great lens. i think it's the best lens in the nikon line today for the money. outdoors on a sunny day, it is the best choice for the 100mm more reach. if money is an issue, then go for a used 80-200 f/2.8 AF-S for indoor sports.
  5. Yep. The 70-300 won't cut it for low-light shooting without a flash. The 80-200 2.8 will be much better. I'd even suggest the 80-200 AF-D. Sports photographers used them for years and got great results before the advent of AF-S or VR.
  6. Sarah,

    I got mine last week and used it over the weekend while in St. Louis. It is a great lens, and for the money you can't beat it. During the day it's nice and fast enough, but as the others have said, at night you need to bump up your film speed to a very high ISO.

    Also, a caveat as I bought mine and it came out of the box from Nikon with dust specs on the inside top lens and second lens in. Not sure if it will be worth sending in to be cleaned though knowing my meticulous nature, it will drive me nuts if I don't.

    A very lightweight carry around lens and does good work on my D200.

  7. Sarah, I went the route that you are thinking about (18-70 and
    70-300vr). As a walk-about pair it is hard to beat the coverage
    and quality.

  8. Wow thanks for the great response. Looks like the one I want is not good in low light. So I might go with the 70-200mm maybe I can find a good used one.

  9. There are many options for a good 70/80-200 2.8. If you search the lens lust forum, you'll find them easily. To summarize, there are 3 iterations of the Nikon 80-200/2.8:

    a push-pull one ring (discontinued)
    a two ring AF-D
    a two ring AF-S (discontinued)

    The choices new are the AF-D version and the 70-200VR. Another good option is the Sigma 70-200 DG HSM which is also available new. Older iterations of that lens without the DG coating are supposed to be as good or better than the current version. I have never owned the Sigma so if I'm wrong about any of this, I'm sure I'll be corrected shortly:redface:. I found that a good approach was to buy one used, see if you like it, then sell and try another or upgrade. All of these tend to hold their value pretty well.
  10. I have found a good used Nikon 80-200mm f2.8 AF-D for sale for $700 is that a good price? And will this work on my d70?

  11. Sarah

    A new one at Aden's (very reasonable retailer) in Toronto is $1090. If it's in good shape this price seems reasonable to me. It will work on a D70.
  12. It is in good shape and comes with a hard case and uv filter. Thanks

  13. US$700 is a bit high. It should be $625 to 650. If it includes an Arca Swiss type plate (about $35-40 new) and the filter is a good one (Nikon, B+W, Hoya Pro 1) then not a bad deal.
  14. SP77


    Jun 4, 2007
    Rockville, MD
    I'd get the 70-300VR for outdoor sports and extra reach for $480, and then the 180 f/2.8 telephoto prime for indoor sports at $750. The 180 prime is half the weight of the f/2.8 telephoto zooms which makes handling a ton easier. There's also the 135mm f/2 telephoto prime which you can also use with teleconverters in case 180 is too long.
  15. I believe Sarah was talking in Canadian $; albeit with the exchange rate these days the dollars are getting closer to par.

    Sarah have you considered buying down in the US this lens is $800 US new at B&H.
  16. No doubt about it, the 180 is a great lens. I have it and use it often, probably more than the 70-200 because it's so compact by comparison. It's just not great at low light sports as it hunts for focus a bit, more I believe than the 80-200AF-D which has a limit switch that can be used to speed focus up a bit. YMMV
  17. Sarah, I am new here but I have the same dilemma as you in terms of which lens to buy. I think I have decided that the 80-200 2.8 is the lens for me, despite its size and weight, the speed and sharpness are really what are important to me. The 70-300 lens is nice, but I shoot a lot in low light, so unfortunately it won't cut it. If you do get the 80-200 2.8 make sure its a dual ring (focus and zoom) with a tripod collar, makes it easier to put it on a mono pod which makes shooting games much easier too.

  18. For those in Canada shopping for new lenses, try this place in Alberta. Much cheaper than Henry's or Vistek, and there is no PST. I've used them before with no problem.

  19. Thanks Brad
    It is always so hard to find a good place to buy from in Canada. I will check it out.

  20. ofd678


    Aug 12, 2007

    I am doing the same thing right now but use a D50.

    I rented a 70-200mm VR this weekend to shot soccer. Nice lens, but I found the 200mm was not enough to reach for soccer. That being said, not sure if I should go with the 70-300VR or the 80-200 2.8 with a T.C. I am really not familiar with T.C.'s so not sure if it would efffect the sharpness at the higher MM's?

    thanks for any details anyone can shed. Hope this is ok to attach to this post, thought it was along the same lines.
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