REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
NikonAF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens
 
4.9

(based on 62 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (57)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (53)
  • Strong construction (45)
  • Rugged (38)
  • Nice bokeh (36)
  • Consistent output (34)

Cons

  • Heavy (30)

Best Uses

  • Wildlife photos (54)
  • Sports/action (48)
  • Landscape/scenery (11)
  • Low light (10)
  • Weddings (6)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (28), Pro photographer (13), Semi-pro photographer (12), Casual photographer (3)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (53), Yes (3)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

I should have bought this years ago.

This lens is a huge upgrade from my older AF 300 f/4.0. The AF-S focusing is much faster, and the ability to instantly overide to manual is very nice. The extra stop...Read complete review

This lens is a huge upgrade from my older AF 300 f/4.0. The AF-S focusing is much faster, and the ability to instantly overide to manual is very nice. The extra stop really comes in handy when using a teleconverter (I got the 1.7x to go with this lens, it works great). Granted, it is a bit heavier to carry around, but after a few long days at the San Diego Zoo, I'm getting used to it. I'm not going to check "heavy" as a con, since this much weight just goes with the size.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Verify AF Accuracy

Please see the attached graphs. I used LensAlign and FocusTune to test the Nikkor 300mm f2.8G ED VRII lens, Serial Number 209819. The lens was mounted on an Arca-Swiss Z1G (giant) monoball...Read complete review

Please see the attached graphs. I used LensAlign and FocusTune to test the Nikkor 300mm f2.8G ED VRII lens, Serial Number 209819. The lens was mounted on an Arca-Swiss Z1G (giant) monoball and Gitzo 5000 series carbon-fiber legs, at a height of 42 inches. The ISO was 1600 and the shutter speed was 1/320. The lens-to-target distance was 26 feet and I used a shutter release cable. The camera body was a Nikon D4 that last week came back from Nikon NY after being adjusted for a back-focusing issue. For an overview of the lens AF performance, I took 4 shots at each micro-adjustment value from minus 20 to plus 20 in steps of 5 units. Based on this overview test and to look for a peak in the curve, I took 9 shots at each micro-adjustment value from plus 10 to plus 20 in steps of 2 units. As you can see both curves go up from left to right, but do not come down. This means, there is no peak. Conclusion, this high-priced lens is focusing in front of the target by greater than 20 micro-adjustment units.

If this was my first such experience, I would not be so appalled.
Sad to say, that last month I tested a new Nikkor 85mm 1.8D lens, only to find that it was focusing behind the target by greater than minus 20 micro-adjustment units.

This 300mm f2.8G ED VRII lens, Serial Number 209819, was returned to B&H (RMA) for a new lens. The B&H representative was very professional. He said, it happens.

I tested the replacement 300mm f2.8G ED VRII lens, Serial Number 209868, in exactly the same way that was used for the defective lens. The replacement lens (209868) was also front focusing, but not as badly as the defective lens. The replacement lens could be adjusted for accurate focus on the target with the AF micro-adjustment set to plus 16.

Can we pro photographers trust Nikon's quality control?
Yes, but verify.

The 300mm f2.8G ED VRII image sharpness is impressive.
The service from B&H is also impressive.

Reviewed by 62 customers

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5.0

An amazing lens.

By Eagle Watcher

from Ripley, OH

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

    Cons

      Best Uses

        Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

        This lens produces exceptional photos.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

         
        5.0

        I'm Impressed..

        By john

        from N.J.

        About Me Photo Enthusiast

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Fast / accurate auto-focus
        • Nice Bokeh
        • Rugged
        • Strong Construction

        Cons

        • Heavy

        Best Uses

        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Landscape/Scenery
        • Sports/Action
        • Wildlife Photos

        Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

        And that's not easily done. I didn't think I was going to get good results handholding this lens ,I thought wrong. The VR works great.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Excellent

        By David

        from Sierra Madre, CA

        About Me Photo Enthusiast

        Pros

        • Consistent Output
        • Durable
        • Fast / accurate auto-focus
        • Nice Bokeh
        • Rugged
        • Strong Construction

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Macro Photography
          • Sports/Action
          • Weddings/Events
          • Wildlife Photos

          Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

          Excellent lens, it works perfectly as it pairs with 2X converter-TC2.0 III to extend to 600mm.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          Share this review

           
          5.0

          Perfection

          By Mick

          from Portage, MI

          About Me Semi-pro Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Consistent Output
          • Durable
          • Fast / accurate auto-focus
          • Strong Construction

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Sports/Action
            • Wildlife Photos

            Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

            Crystal Clear
            Fast Focus

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

            (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Amazing

            By jimmyboy

            from Conn

            About Me Photo Enthusiast

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • Consistent Output
            • Durable
            • Easily Interchangeable
            • Fast / accurate auto-focus
            • Nice Bokeh
            • Rugged
            • Strong Construction

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Sports/Action
              • Wildlife Photos

              Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

              Outstanding lens. One of the best from Nikon.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              Share this review

              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Worth the Wait

              By Birdman

              from Westchester NY

              About Me Semi-pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Durable
              • Easily Interchangeable
              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
              • Nice Bokeh
              • Strong Construction

              Cons

              • Heavy
              • Pricey

              Best Uses

              • Sports/Action
              • Wildlife Photos

              Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

              I am a wildlife photographer concentrating mainly on bird life. I have been looking at this lens for over a year and I finally made the leap and I am very happy. The lens produces crisp, clean, clear and just stunning photos. I coupled this lens with the Nikon TC17 EII teleconverter and the lens still performs great. Although you can use all the Nikon teleconverters with this lens I stick with the TC17 EII. The TC20 EIII works well but it is slow to focus in low light conditions. Also, even though you can hand hold this lens with a converter I suggest a tripod especially with the TC20 EIII. Try it out and compare the shots. You will be amazed how much more clean and crisp your shots are when using a tripod,

              Share this review

              (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              Expensive

              By ArtS

              from Virginia Beach, Va

              About Me Photo Enthusiast

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
              • Rugged
              • Strong Construction

              Cons

              • Heavy
              • very expensive

              Best Uses

              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Wildlife Photos

              Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

              I use this lens with a D7100 and it performs as advertised. I also use the TC-14EII with it. It has improved my photos greatly but there is a bit of a learning curve - you must also perfect keeping the lens steady, steady, steady. It is a very heavy lens so be prepared. Either work out a lot lifting weights, or like me, use a Tripod and Gimbal or a bean bag. I still use my D7000 and the 70-300mm lens and keep my 105 F2.8 handy along with a 18-300mm.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              Share this review

              (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Amazing

              By wvanstone

              from Palmyra NJ

              About Me Pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
              • Nice Bokeh
              • Rugged
              • Strong Construction

              Cons

              • Heavy

              Best Uses

              • Sports/Action
              • Wildlife Photos

              Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

              Amazing in every way.
              I use this with all three TC's 1.4,1.7 & 2.0. The 2.0 does a great job at making this a very usable 600mm f5.6

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              Share this review

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Comparison with Nikon 300mm F4

              By lknight

              from Singapore

              About Me Photo Enthusiast

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Durable
              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
              • Rugged
              • Strong Construction

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Wildlife Photos

                Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                I use the lens for wildlife and it was an upgrade from a Nikon 300mm F4 (which I already thought was superb). The 300mm F2.8 is faster to focus, and VR II is very welcome for hand held photos in low light. The lens is super sharp, works well with a Nikon 1.7x teleconverter. The only downsides are its weight compared to the Nikon 300mm F4, and the cost difference!

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                 
                5.0

                Outstanding

                By DBaucom

                from Athens, AL

                About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Consistent Output
                • Easily Interchangeable
                • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                • Rugged

                Cons

                • Heavy

                Best Uses

                • Indoors/Low Light
                • Sports/Action
                • Wildlife Photos

                Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                As usual, Nikon delivers excellent quality with this lens. It's a tad heavy, but that is to be expected at this aperture/focal length combo. Focuses quickly and accurately and image quality is excellent. Would definitely recommend!

                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Superb

                By Michael

                from Maine

                Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                For my nature photography, I wanted a fast, long lens that I could carry easily, hand hold for brief periods and that would give me sharp results wide open. Most of my photos are taken at dawn or dusk. This is perfect.

                Share this review

                (13 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                I should have bought this years ago.

                By Frank B

                from San Diego, CA

                About Me Photo Enthusiast

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Consistent Output
                • Durable
                • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                • Nice Bokeh
                • Rugged

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Sports/Action
                  • Wildlife Photos

                  Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                  This lens is a huge upgrade from my older AF 300 f/4.0. The AF-S focusing is much faster, and the ability to instantly overide to manual is very nice. The extra stop really comes in handy when using a teleconverter (I got the 1.7x to go with this lens, it works great). Granted, it is a bit heavier to carry around, but after a few long days at the San Diego Zoo, I'm getting used to it. I'm not going to check "heavy" as a con, since this much weight just goes with the size.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                  (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Spot On Lens

                  By CMyersPhoto

                  from Okinawa, Japan

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Consistent Output
                  • Durable
                  • Easily Interchangeable
                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Nice Bokeh
                  • Rugged
                  • Strong Construction

                  Cons

                  • Heavy

                  Best Uses

                  • Landscape/Scenery
                  • Sports/Action
                  • Weddings/Events
                  • Wildlife Photos

                  Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                  Lens arrived packed amazingly well by B&H. Other than that there is not much to say that hasn't already been said. It's remarkably fast focusing and very sharp. You can hand hold it but I suspect you wouldn't want to for more than a short time. Add a monopod and you're good to go. Can't imagine that anyone would not be pleased with the beauty. VERY sexy lens that delivers.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                  (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  Very Good Lens

                  By Arcata PhotoBirder

                  from Arcata, CA

                  About Me Pro Photographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Durable
                  • Easily Interchangeable
                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Rugged
                  • Strong Construction

                  Cons

                  • Not Quite In Focus At Inf

                  Best Uses

                  • Sports/Action
                  • Wildlife Photos

                  Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                  I'm a professional bird photographer, and my primary travel lenses are a Nikkor 200-400mm f/4 zoom and this Nikkor 300mm f/2.8, sometimes used alone and sometimes with teleconverters.

                  The 300mm f/2.8 has reasonable size and weight, and when used without a teleconverter, it has a fast crisp focus, except focus is slightly off at infinity. This latter is the reason I gave it four 4 instead of 5 stars.

                  The focus is slower and less crisp when used with a teleconverter, but that is the expected downside tradeoff when using a teleconverter.

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                  (8 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Sharp as a knife...

                  By Doug

                  from Charlotte, NC

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Nice Bokeh
                  • Strong Construction

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Sports/Action
                    • Wildlife Photos

                    Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                    Doesn't get any better than this lens! Super sharp, very nice contrast, and great color renditon wide open at F2.8. AF is lightning fast and accurate even with tc's. MF is smooth and without backlash. If you want to have 300mm, 400mm, 500mm, and 600mm in your arsenal this lens lets you get there with tc's. There is a very, very slight loss of sharpness with the 1.4x tc stopped down 1 stop. The 1.7x tc requires 1.5 to 2 stops to get back to good sharpness. Have not tried the 2x tc. VR works quite well and have had great low light shots.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

                    Share this review

                    (3 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Great lense

                    By Pops

                    from Lodi, CA

                    About Me Casual Photographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                    • Nice Bokeh
                    • Strong Construction

                    Cons

                    • Heavy

                    Best Uses

                    • Landscape/Scenery
                    • Sports/Action
                    • Wildlife Photos

                    Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                    Just got the lense and was impressed by the weight. Took it to point Reyes to look for Tule elk and was completely impressed with the speed of focus, absolutely sharp focus and solid build.
                    Would like to have a different objective cover than the bag, but overall extremely pleased with the lense.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • Yes

                    Share this review

                    (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    exelent

                    By Pablo

                    from Chile

                    About Me Photo Enthusiast

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Wildlife Photos

                        Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                        exelent very good lens

                        Share this review

                        (15 of 19 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        3.0

                        Verify AF Accuracy

                        By JT3

                        from AZ, MD, TX, UT & Beyond

                        About Me Pro Photographer

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Durable
                        • Nice Bokeh
                        • Rugged
                        • Strong Construction

                        Cons

                        • Af May Not Be Accurate

                        Best Uses

                        • Macro With Extention Tube
                        • Sports/Action
                        • Wildlife Photos

                        Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                        Please see the attached graphs. I used LensAlign and FocusTune to test the Nikkor 300mm f2.8G ED VRII lens, Serial Number 209819. The lens was mounted on an Arca-Swiss Z1G (giant) monoball and Gitzo 5000 series carbon-fiber legs, at a height of 42 inches. The ISO was 1600 and the shutter speed was 1/320. The lens-to-target distance was 26 feet and I used a shutter release cable. The camera body was a Nikon D4 that last week came back from Nikon NY after being adjusted for a back-focusing issue. For an overview of the lens AF performance, I took 4 shots at each micro-adjustment value from minus 20 to plus 20 in steps of 5 units. Based on this overview test and to look for a peak in the curve, I took 9 shots at each micro-adjustment value from plus 10 to plus 20 in steps of 2 units. As you can see both curves go up from left to right, but do not come down. This means, there is no peak. Conclusion, this high-priced lens is focusing in front of the target by greater than 20 micro-adjustment units.

                        If this was my first such experience, I would not be so appalled.
                        Sad to say, that last month I tested a new Nikkor 85mm 1.8D lens, only to find that it was focusing behind the target by greater than minus 20 micro-adjustment units.

                        This 300mm f2.8G ED VRII lens, Serial Number 209819, was returned to B&H (RMA) for a new lens. The B&H representative was very professional. He said, it happens.

                        I tested the replacement 300mm f2.8G ED VRII lens, Serial Number 209868, in exactly the same way that was used for the defective lens. The replacement lens (209868) was also front focusing, but not as badly as the defective lens. The replacement lens could be adjusted for accurate focus on the target with the AF micro-adjustment set to plus 16.

                        Can we pro photographers trust Nikon's quality control?
                        Yes, but verify.

                        The 300mm f2.8G ED VRII image sharpness is impressive.
                        The service from B&H is also impressive.

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

                        Share this review

                        (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Excellent telephoto lens

                        By geotravel

                        from LA, CA

                        About Me Photo Enthusiast

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Consistent Output
                        • Fast / accurate auto-focus

                        Cons

                        • Heavy

                        Best Uses

                        • Sports/Action
                        • Wildlife Photos

                        Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                        Excellent telephoto lens. Sharp and fast. Coupling with TC-20E III makes a light weight 600mm f/5.6, comparing to the 600mm f/4. Use with DX camera can get 900mm equivalent focal length. Auto focus is very fast even with TC-20E III. No problem in tracking humming birds 30 feet away in natural day light. A sturdy light weight tripod, such as Gitzo GT3541, is a must. Strongly suggest use arca-swiss type of ball head (such as Arca Z1) and Winberley Sidekick. The supporting combination can make the maneuvering of lens and camera effortless. The total cost and carrying weight of tripod, ball head, etc. should be considered and added on top of the lens. So, backpack hiking? Not for typical people. For local birding, wildlife, and fast action photo, it is a perfect lens.

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

                        Share this review

                        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        great quality lens

                        By kevin

                        from alexandria, la

                        About Me Photo Enthusiast

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Consistent Output
                        • Fast / accurate auto-focus

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Sports/Action
                          • Wildlife Photos

                          Comments about Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VR II Lens:

                          great for outdoor wildlife photography, smaller and easier to handle than the 400 2.8

                          • Was this a gift?:
                          • No

                          Share this review

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