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Thread: Thoughts on this lens setup?

  1. #1
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    17 May 2013
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    Thoughts on this lens setup?

    Hey folks,

    I'm buying a 55mm-300mm Nikkor f/4.5-5.6G ED VR zoom for my D5100. The next lens I'd like is a decent macro and the Tamron AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di LD Macro is on my list. I know the Tamron is a zoom but I've read it's not as good as the Nikkor, nor does it have the benefit of VR.

    Is that a reasonable purchase, the Tamron for dedicated (occasional) macro use or should I look at another lens?



  2. #2
    keen learner of new tricks.
    Join Date
    09 Feb 2009
    Newcastle, NSW
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    pretty hard to go past the Tamron 90 macro....1:1 ratio. I think the 70 - 300 would nor give you more than 2:1.
    "May the good Lord look down and smile upon your face"......Norman Gunston___________________________________________________
    Nikon: D7000, D80, 12-24 f4, 17-55 f2.8, 18-135, 70-300VR, 35f2, SB 400, SB 600, TC-201 2x converter. Tamron: 90 macro 2.8 Kenko ext. tubes. Photoshop CS2.

  3. #3
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    04 Jun 2006
    the worst house, in the best street
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    I think these macro type lenses usually only offer a 1:3 reproduction ratio.
    And not only is the 70-300 not as macro as they'd like you to think, it's usually only effective as a macro lens at full focal length extension where it's generally not quite sharp.
    What invariably happens is that the magnification is not as high as you'd like it to be, and you end up cropping quite heavily, and as the lens is not quite as sharp as a good quality macro lens will be, the appearance is not quite what you may be hoping for.

    In the long run, you'll end up just chasing your tail trying to get high quality sharp images in macro mode out of one.

    Best option is to just look for a proper macro lens(as already said, the Tammy 90 is good value for money) .. and they also generally work really well as a portrait lens too.
    Problem is that the screw driven version of this lens(the cheap version) will not AF on your D5100, so you may be looking at the more expensive VC USD version, which is usually about 2x the price.
    Both the image stabilisation and ultrasonic focusing are a boon tho, and I reckon worth the expense.

    BUT! for about the price of the 70-300, you could get the 60mm f/2 Macro from Tamron. No VC, but it does have AF built in for the D5100 .. and a very highly regarded lens.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC

  4. #4
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    18 Sep 2009
    Nthn Sydney
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    Actually, on this page
    it says 1:2 macro.
    I wouldn't call that "decent", though it is OK if you want to do some close-ups.

    My other thought would be that there's a lot of doubling up on lens zoom ratio with those two lenses.

    I agree with a dedicated 1:1 macro lens plus one of the two - probably the 55-300.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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