Yikes, what an official name. If you want to know what AF-S, VR and IF-ED means, head to Ken Rockwell’s page about it. I’m going to go ahead and call it the Nikon 70-300mm, because that’s what a normal person would call it.
70-300 w/lens hood on my D80
I bought the lens from Adorama – a factory-refurbished model at an additional discount, so it was a great deal. It came with only a 90-day warranty and no fancy packaging, but I’ll live. As you may have read in my previous post, I was planning on renting a fixed 300mm f/4 for an upcoming Africa trip, but it was simply too heavy. The 70-300mm is one stop slower (f/5.6 instead of f/4) and in general lower quality, but it has vibration reduction and it’s half the weight! And half the price!
You can see from the photo above that it’s by far my biggest lens, although it’s only 6 ounces (170g) heavier than the 18-200mm. I plan on taking both of those zoom lenses to Africa and leaving the macro and f/1.4 lenses behind.
- A little close – you can’t zoom out with the 300mm f/4
Zooming is a big plus! In theory I like the idea of using a high-quality fixed lens and moving myself to ‘zoom’ in and out, but I won’t have that luxury on the safari since I’ll be in a Land Rover 99% of the time. Looking at other folks’ photos from Kruger outings, we’ll almost certainly see animals close to the road, and I don’t want to be stuck at 300mm if that happens.
Regarding the photo at right, however, God help us if we are ever that close to a hippo. But hopefully you see my point.
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