1. Welcome to NikonCafe.com—a friendly Nikon camera & photography discussion forum!

    If you are thinking of buying a camera or need help with your photos, you will find our forum members full of advice! Click here to join for free!

Review Nikon 300mm f/4.5 AI

Discussion in 'Reviews, Tests, & Shootouts' started by gryphon1911, Dec 4, 2018.

  1. Background
    I already have a great 300mm f/4 lens, so why did I get this one? Good question readers! The newest Nikon 300mm f/4E PF lens is a fantastic creation. Much sharper than I could imagine, focus' fast.

    What I cannot do with it is adapt it to my mirrorless cameras and I could never get this lens as cheap as I can the 300/4.5 AI.

    Handling/Size/Weight
    You'd think a legacy 300mm lens would be heavy. To the 300/4.5AI's credit, it has a noticeable weight to it, but it is not something that is off putting, even on a mirrorless camera. It did originally come with a removable tripod collar. Hopefully if you find one of these in a store, the lens collar will still be with it. I was lucky enough to find one with the tripod collar.

    The aperture ring is what you have come to expect with a Nikon of this age. Positive clicks by the numbers.

    The focus ring is smooth, but does have quite a long throw to it. I noticed it can be a bit picky to get precise sometimes, however, this is an old, used lens so I'm not sure if that is just a symptom of use/abuse or if that is the way it was from new.

    Image Quality
    Many reports that this lens is a decent performer wide open. Stopped down, as with most lenses it is supposed to really start shining. Do those statements from others hold true?

    On the Nikon Df:
    11-26-2017_Df_street_mf_DSC_9345.jpg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    1/500, f/4.5, ISO 100

    11-26-2017_Df_street_mf_DSC_9350.jpg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    1/500, f/4.5, ISO 100

    11-26-2017_Df_street_mf_DSC_9357.jpg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    1/1000, f/8, ISO 450

    11-26-2017_Df_street_mf_DSC_9365.jpg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    1/320, f/4.5, ISO 1800

    11-26-2017_Df_street_mf_DSC_9367.jpg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    1/320, f/4.5, ISO 2200

    11-26-2017_Df_street_mf_DSC_9370.jpg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    1/320, f/4.5, ISO 1250

    Focusing

    Manual focus and pretty decent. Not the best I've ever used with the Nikon 180/2.8 ED AIS and 105/2.5 besting it in feel. It was a little bit of a struggle at times trying to balance the weight with my left hand and also turning the focus ring.

    Bottom Line
    For the $50 I nabbed this for I can't really complain too much. With my Olympus Micro Four Thirds kit, you have very few options at the longer end. A handful of 300mm zooms that are not very fast (f/5.6-6.7) and the ones that are fast like the Olympus 300mm f/4 prime are $2500+ USD.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not comparing the IQ of the Olympus to this legacy Nikon. But this is a decent way of getting that 600mm field of view for not a lot of money if you don't mind having to manual focus.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.