Nikkor AF-S 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR (FX) - Review / Test Report - Sample Images & Verdict
Lens Reviews - Nikon / Nikkor (full format)

Sample Shots

The following sample shots were taken with a D3x and RAW-converted via CaptureOne.

Click on a thumbnail to view the original file (opens in a separate window).

Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 185.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 180.0mm
Aperture: f/5.0
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 70.0mm
Aperture: f/4.5
Exposure 1/800s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 230.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/160s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 70.0mm
Aperture: f/4.5
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 185.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 70.0mm
Aperture: f/4.5
Exposure 1/800s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 240.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 300.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 135.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/320s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 220.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 125.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 220.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/250s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 300.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/800s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 300.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/1600s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 300.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 300.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 122.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/640s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 300.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/500s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 300.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/160s

Verdict

The Nikon AF-S 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 VR delivers very good to excellent sharpness in the image center combined with good to very good resolution at the borders and corners. Vignetting is well controlled, but CAs are quite high (though easy to remove in post processing) and distortion is above average for this lens class. We did not formally test it, but noticed in our field tests that the quality of the bokeh can be rough in critical situations specifically regarding the highlight rendering. This may be somewhat unfortunate but the truth is that this aspect is generally a problem in this lens class.

The build quality is good, without reaching professional grade quality. Thanks to a Silent Wave drive AF operation is quite fast and nearly silent. The optical stabilization is quite efficient, but at least in our tests did not reach the promised gain of 4 stops in the field. Up to 3 stops are realistic, though.

So, in summary the lens offers much value for an attractive price. However, anyone considering this lens should also have a close look at the Tamron 70-300 VC (which we reviewed here).

Optical Quality:    
Mechanical Quality:
Price/Performance:
      
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