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Ole Thorsen | profile | all galleries >> Nikon 1 V1 >> FT1 adapter test >> Nikon AF-S VR 70-300 f4.5-5.6G test tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Nikon AF-S VR 70-300 f4.5-5.6G test

The VR70-300mm lens mounted on the J1/V1 cameras with the FT1 adapter is a pretty compact and leight weight walk-around super telephoto lens giving a 190-816mm FX eq. FOV.

I don't own this lens myself, but I decided to borough my father's VR70-300mm to test how this lens performs with a 2.7 crop. I decided to use the same test objects as I used for my portrait lens test, so I had to find the Christmas elf dolls in my wife's Christmas boxes :-) As I always do when I test lenses I mounted the V1+FT1+VR70-300mm on a solid tripod triggering the shutter with a ML-L3 remote, and I used the SB-N5 flash in manual 1/16 output swivelled to the side to trigger a SB-800 in SU-4 mode with manual output adjusted to the different apertures tested, bounced at my white ceiling to give some pleasing light.

Subject distance was adjusted so the dolls filled the frame, though at 280 and 300mm I was at the end of my living room so the subject distance was limited to 7.8m (25.6ft).

A note about AF speed. This lens mounted on a V1 needs good outdoor light to have a fast autofocus, specially at 300mm f5.6. In less than good light i.e. indoors it hunts a lot for focus on a V1. I had to use a powerful torch to help the V1's AF-S getting an AF-lock for this indoor test :-)

* 70mm f4.5 (190mm FOV): sharpness excellent, CA none
* 100mm f4.5 (272mm FOV): sharpness excellent, CA none
* 155mm f4.8 (422mm FOV): sharpness excellent, CA none
* 200mm f5.6 (544mm FOV): sharpness excellent, CA none
* 280mm f5.6 (762mm FOV): sharpness very good+, CA very low
* 300mm f5.6 (816mm FOV): sharpness very good, CA very low
* 300mm f6.3 (816mm FOV): sharpness very good, CA very low
* 300mm f7.1 (816mm FOV): sharpness very good+, CA very low
* 300mm f8 (816mm FOV): sharpness excellent-, CA none

I must say I'm a little surprised about how good this lens performs on my V1, even the often criticized 300mm is actually very useful stopped down a little. I'm very tempted to buy this lens for a walk-around super telephoto, but will probably wait to see if Nikon launches an update to either 300mm f4 or VR80-400mm here in the coming Spring releases.

See below for downsized samples. The NEF files are processed with Nikon Capture NX2 with the Portrait Picture Control, sharpening level 1, increased contrast with a weak S- curve, and sharpening with a combined USM and High pass sharpening step. If you want to see full size samples you can get them at the following rapidshare link:

Rapidshare link to zip file with full size JPG files
70-300 VR 70mm f4.5_DSC2359 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 70mm f4.5_DSC2359 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 100mm f4.5_DSC2365 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 100mm f4.5_DSC2365 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 155mm f4.8_DSC2372 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 155mm f4.8_DSC2372 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 200mm f5.6_DSC2376 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 200mm f5.6_DSC2376 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 280mm f5.6_DSC2353 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 280mm f5.6_DSC2353 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 300mm f5.6_DSC2378 nx2 1300x870.jpg
70-300 VR 300mm f5.6_DSC2378 nx2 1300x870.jpg