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Thread: Which Nikon Lens to Buy? 55mm - 200mm or 55mm - 300mm

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    Member Nilkamal's Avatar
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    Question Which Nikon Lens to Buy? 55mm - 200mm or 55mm - 300mm

    Hi,
    I am a beginner in photography and I bought Nikon D5100 with 18mm-55mm lens kit. Now i can't decide which lens to buy - 55mm - 200mm or 55mm - 300mm one?
    I just want to take good photos for my own pleasure. I am not going to be in much more details but I love to learn about photography which gives me great fun while taking cool shot....
    Can you please give me advice?
    Regards
    Nilkamal

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    It really depends on your need for 300mm versus 200mm and the depth of your wallet.
    I don't know of many people that have the 55-300 but I have seen plenty of images posted with the 55-200. We own a 55-200 which we bought new about 100 years ago and it is a very capable lens. Certainly it delivers very good quality for dollar value and works well at both ends of the focal lengths.
    One sample image that shows it up well is at http://www.ausphotography.net.au/for...good-can-it-be and if you search well I am sure that you can find others.

    These days the 55-200 should be available at around the $200.00 mark BUT please be aware that there are 2 versions of the lens. There is the first version without VR and the second version with VR. The second version is absolutely the only one to consider.
    Andrew
    Nikon, Fuji, Nikkor, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and too many other bits and pieces to list.



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    Member bconolly's Avatar
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    Andrew's exactly right - it really depends on the need to hit 300mm. I've had both lenses and in the equivalent focal range (ie 55-200mm) they performed virtually identically and very well. Note that the 55-200 was, again as Andrew has noted, the VR version. From 200-300mm the 55-300 softened noticeably. So much so that I ditched it to go to the 55-200mm only. Just to add confusion to the mix, have you considered the 70-300mm VR? This is ultimately the lens I purchased and stuck with and the quality difference and sharpness are notably better than either of the other two lenses IMHO.

    Brenden
    Last edited by bconolly; 09-09-2013 at 9:37pm.
    Olympus OM-D EM-1, 12-40mm f2.8, 45mm f1.8, Panny 25mm f1.7

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    D750 Shines cupic's Avatar
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    If you can stretch it I'd go the 70-300 Vr,money well spent and more pro than the 55-300mm,also FX lens future proof


    cheers




    Nikon D750,D700,D300s,Coolpix P7700
    Nikkor 300mm f/4E PF ED VR, Nikkor 16-35mm f/4 VR, Nikkor 70mm-300mm VR, 35mm DX f/1.8, 50mm D f/1.8, 85mm D f/1.8, Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8, Tokina 100mm f/2.8, Tamron 60mm f/2 , Tamron SP 24-70mm f2.8 VC Di

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    Member dutch2's Avatar
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    I agree with the previous comment, go for the 300 if you can afford it.
    I did and am very happy that I spent the extra.
    The VR is well worth it.

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    Member Iscariot's Avatar
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    agreed the 70-300 is a stellar lens. sadly i dont seem to use mine any more though.
    Cheers Gav

    CC always welcome and encouraged
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/iscariotau/

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    Member Hayaku's Avatar
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    As a minor note, you may want to change the title. You currently have 55-200 vs 55-200 not 55-200 vs 55-300.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hayaku View Post
    As a minor note, you may want to change the title. You currently have 55-200 vs 55-200 not 55-200 vs 55-300.
    Done.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I have the 55-300 and it made a very capable birding lens for my early adventures. I still use it as my walk around lens as its zoom range makes it more capable in that role. If you can stretch to the 70-300 VR then that may be an option but if budget is your concern the 55-300 gives you more choices. Just my humble opinion of course.
    Waz
    Be who you are and say what you mean, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind - Dr. Seuss...
    D700 | D7000 | Nikkor AF-S 18-55 DX 1:3.5-5.6G | Nikkor AF-S 55-300 DX 1:4.5-5.6 G ED | Nikkor AF 50 f/1.8D | Optex OPM2930 tripod/monopod | Enthusiasm ...
    My Flickr images ...

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    I have the 70-300 and have had it since my first DSLR. Love it apart from the size & wieght, its harder to fit in my handbag The quality of photos is excellent BUT I have also borrowed a friends 55-200 and the results were also very pleasing especially at the Aus open tennis where they only allowed max 200 on cameras! Also took some good portait shots with that one. Much more compact for travelling etc. So not sure if that has been any help at all
    Ness

    Nikon D7000, Tamron 17-50 F2.8 XR DiII VC , Nikkor AF-S 70-300 4.5-56 VR
    Speedlight SB700

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