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Thread: Zoom-Nikkor AI-S 50-300mm f/4.5 ED

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    Zoom-Nikkor AI-S 50-300mm f/4.5 ED

    I'd been looking for this legendary old timer zoom for a while, but couldn't find a good copy with a reasonable price.
    Two weeks ago, I finally managed to pick up a collectable copy !


    #1



    #2



    The focal range of this zoom-lens is for me ideal for travelling with one single lens and for nature and wildlife photography.
    All my MF Nikon lenses are superb on digital sensor, especially on my D2X. This 50-300mm AI-S is just another great lens to work with my DSLR.
    So far, I mainly use it with my D7000 and the results are simply fantastic for an 30 years old zoom !

    Here are some of my first test shots :

    #3 : D7000, @300mm, wide open.



    Crop 100% head



    Crop 100% feathers
    Last edited by Sar NOP; 30-05-2011 at 5:45pm.

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    #4 : D7000, @300mm, f/5.6



    Crop 100%
    Last edited by Sar NOP; 30-05-2011 at 5:45pm.

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    #5 : D7000 + Kenko 2x, @600mm, wide open.



    Crop 50%

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    "Vivid Sydney" from last night :

    #6 : D7000, 1/6", f/5.6, @2500 ISO.




    #7



    #8

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Nice one Sar.

    I've also been looking for one for what seems like an eternity now, but as with your criteria, it has to be for a reasonable price!

    I've seen some lower priced copies, mainly non Ai lenses Ai'ed, or otherwise with dings and knocks.
    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


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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post

    I've seen some lower priced copies, mainly non Ai lenses Ai'ed, or otherwise with dings and knocks.
    According to Bjorn Rorslett, the AI-S ED version is optically the best and the lightest too. He mentioned that heavy dings and knocks on the front of the lens barrel could easily cause misalignment of the lens.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sar NOP View Post
    ...... He mentioned that heavy dings and knocks on the front of the lens barrel could easily cause misalignment of the lens.
    Yep! that's why I passed on a few of them too.

    I do kick myself for not going for an 'immaculate' copy up for sale a while back(in Photographic Trader).. but in the end I lived

    Good to see your images backing up Bjorn's comments about this lens too


    One day I'll definitely end up with one of these lenses, that much I'm sure of. It's just a low priority ATM.

  8. #8
    I am older than I look. peterb666's Avatar
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    Excellent photos - what a great lens.
    Cheers

    PeterB666


    Visit my 52/2011 My photos on Flickr. On Model Mayhem now (fortunately not as a model) My new blogsite!

    Olympus OM-D E-M5 with Metabones Speed Booster and Nikon 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 - almost as insanely wicked as sin itself.

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    Nice find and great results so far. Love the detail in the blue feathers crop. Very sharp.
    Cheers, Paul.
    Canon 50D w BG l Nifty Fifty l Sigma 10-20 f4-5.6 l Sigma 24-70 f2.8 l EF 100mm f2.8 USM Macro l EF 300 f4L IS USM l EF 1.4X ll TC l 430EXII l Vanguard Alto Pro 263 w BH100 l Manfrotto 680B w 234RC l Lowepro Bags.l Sigma EM-140 Ring Flash.

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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Darn nice piece of glass and beautifully built older lens. Mongo too like yourself and Arthur had been looking at one of these for some years but have never seen one good enough condition that Mongo would buy it . The odd one that might be was too expensive for what was. Glad a good one has fallen into your hands. The Ai and Ai-s are identical in make up ( 1ED element) but the Ai-s is 350 grams lighter. Its portability and optical range is excellent for a travel lens ( with the odd converter in your pocket). The results you have shown us are truly excellent. Mongo is starting to think that you and Mongo are the only ones who love the old time Nikkor lenses and sometimes ( in certain circumstances) use them in preference to their more modern counterparts. It would be nice to see some more examples when you have them. Congrats on this fine purchase and giving this lens a good home.

    PS- The Ai-s was made from 1982 to 1999. Less than 7000 Ai-s models were ever made. Ai-s models start at serial No 183001 and end at 189904. From your serial number, your was one of the first made in probably about 1984
    Last edited by mongo; 30-05-2011 at 10:53pm.
    Nikon and Pentax user



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    Thanks mongo for informations about the lens. I'm wondering how one can keep a zoom-lens like brand new for nearly 30 years !?!

    Here's are some more examples for mongo :

    #9 : at long distance and high ISO, the resolution of the lens still is amazing.


    Crop 100%

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    #10 : From yesterday, under the rain ! Crop 50%




    #11

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    And a crop 100% of the #6 :


  14. #14
    Who let the rabble in? Lance B's Avatar
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    Wow!!! These are amazing images, Sar. The lens IQ is superb and especially considering it an old lens.

    Congrats on the lens and on the excellent images!

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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sar NOP View Post
    Thanks mongo for informations about the lens. I'm wondering how one can keep a zoom-lens like brand new for nearly 30 years !?!
    Answer - they love it and care for it by using it without abusing it.

    can't get over the resolution of #9 in those conditions ! Mongo assumes you used the D7000 for high ISO. Also the 100% crop of the opera house (last image) is also very telling of the high grade resolution this lens is clearly capable of. Mongo must also say that he was not certain how a zoom like this would handle a converter. As you know, Mongo is not over thrilled with the performance of the 200-400 with converters over X1.4. However, your new lens seems to react quite nicely to a Kenko converter.

    Mongo should think you are very happy your 50-300mm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mongo View Post

    can't get over the resolution of #9 in those conditions ! Mongo assumes you used the D7000 for high ISO.
    Yes mongo, to test this zoom-lens I used my D7000 for its high resolution sensor and its high ISO capabilities.


    Quote Originally Posted by mongo View Post

    Mongo must also say that he was not certain how a zoom like this would handle a converter. As you know, Mongo is not over thrilled with the performance of the 200-400 with converters over X1.4. However, your new lens seems to react quite nicely to a Kenko converter.
    The only time I mounted a Kenko 2x converter on this 50-300mm, in a quite poor shooting condition, I was indeed really surprised to see how well this zoom handled the TC at wide open.


    Another example with a 2x converter (this image was taken from Luna Park) :

    D7000 + Kenko 2x, 1/125", @600mm, wide open, 800 ISO.



    Crop 100%

  17. #17
    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sar NOP View Post
    .....Another example with a 2x converter (this image was taken from Luna Park) :

    D7000 + Kenko 2x, 1/125", @600mm, wide open, 800 ISO.
    from Luna Park ! ....2X converter ! .......zoom lens ! .......30 years old !..........Bl**dy Hell - that's amazing .....!!!!!!

    Mongo notices that you use the Kenko and not the 20EIII - is the Kenko better on this lens ? Mongo was curious whether a Kenko would work better on his 300 f2.8 than the 20EIII (which works reasonably well anyway)
    Last edited by mongo; 02-06-2011 at 8:36pm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mongo View Post

    Mongo notices that you use the Kenko and not the 20EIII - is the Kenko better on this lens ? Mongo was curious whether a Kenko would work better on his 300 f2.8 than the 20EIII (which works reasonably well anyway)
    The new Nikon TCs (E series) cannot mount on the old AI-S lenses. That's why I use the Kenko 2x on my AI-S lenses. I also have the old Nikon TC-200, but it's not as good as Kenko.
    Optically, the Kenko 2x is nearly as good as the TC-20EIII. But the Nikon focuses faster and is much more accurate because the Kenko is 2/3 stop slower than the Nikon.

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    i am in awe!

    i am so glad the f-mount still keeps these classic gems available for future generations to enjoy
    Thanks,
    Nam

  20. #20
    Amor fati! ving's Avatar
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    thats a lovely sharp lens sar. congrats on the purchase.

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