Nikon AF -S 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF -ED VR

The bud­get lens that ri­vals pro­fes­sional-grade glass

NPhoto - - Test Team -

Tele­photo zoom lens > £440, $590 > www.nikon.com This lens is hardly cheap, but it does rep­re­sent a se­ri­ous step up in per­for­mance over Nikon’s 55200mm VR or 55-300mm VR op­tics. In that sense, it’s a mas­sive money-saver. It boasts a ring-type ul­tra­sonic aut­o­fo­cus mo­tor, plus rugged build qual­ity that in­cludes a metal, weather-sealed lens mount. Two Ex­tra-low Dis­per­sion lens el­e­ments min­imise chro­matic aber­ra­tion and im­prove sharp­ness, and you get Nikon’s su­perb VR sys­tem.

In use, its per­for­mance ri­vals that of a prospec lens. Sharp­ness is ex­cel­lent, and those ED­glass el­e­ments do a good job of ban­ish­ing colour fring­ing in high-con­trast sce­nar­ios. Fac­tor in the neg­li­gi­ble dis­tor­tion lev­els, as well as com­pat­i­bil­ity with both DX and FX bod­ies, and the 70-300mm VR stands out as a ter­rific all­rounder that’s well worth the ex­tra out­lay.

Up­grade if you own... a kit lens or even Nikon’s 55-200mm VR, but not if you al­ready own the ex­cel­lent 55-300mm VR.

run­ner up... Tam­ron SP 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di VC USD

Tempted by the Nikon 70-300mm VR but don’t fancy splash­ing out so much cash? This Tam­ron gives you sim­i­lar per­for­mance, al­beit with slightly more fring­ing and no lens mount seal.

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