AFS 55-300 or AFS 70-300?


New Member
Oct 12, 2011
Singapore - West
Hi I am new to clubsnap and wish to get some advice. I am currently using a Nikon d60, and a kit 55-200mm, which came with the camera, for my telephoto needs. I've realised I need more reach and hence deciding between the AFS 55-300 and AFS 70-300.

My budget is really tight, so I need maximum value for money. I don't foresee myself upgrading to Fx camera anytime soon, because of tight budget.

Would like to ask which of the lenses has more value for money? I would appreciate any advice on this matter!

Thanks! :)


New Member
Oct 5, 2010
the 70-300 is around $600 in BnS section, it's a sharp lens from 70-200, a less sharper on 300mm
not sure on the price of 55-300 tough

Oct 12, 2011
From the reviews that I have read, the 70-300mm is indeed a faster lens in terms of AF speed. Image quality wise both are about equal but the 55-300mm has better image quality at 300mm when compared to the 70-300mm. Since you don't intend to upgrade to an FX camera, I suggest you save money and go for the 55-300mm. Do read up on kenrockwell website they have suggestions on which lenses to buy for a DX camera.


Senior Member
Jul 10, 2010
Previously owned a 55-300mm DX (juz sold). At f8 to f11 the pictures shot from zoom of 55mm to 135mm VERY VERY SHARP (as good as my 16-85mm DX)

200mm @ f8 still SHARP

300mm @ f8 noticeable not so SHARP than 200mm

The graph here is quite accurate based on my experience of this LENS. And VR II really works well.

However 300mm range is still not long enough to shoot birdies which I am disappointed.....

Nikon Lens: Zooms - Nikon 55-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED VR AF-S DX Nikkor (Tested) -!

Apr 7, 2010
Southern Enclave
You might need to consider how important is fast autofocusing is to you.

If you're okay with the 55-200mm's focusing speed, then 55-300 is not that far off - the only difference is that you've gained more reach.

Many choose 70-300 VR for a crop body is not because they want to move on to full frame eventually. It is primarily for the AF-S speed. For the price difference, you get a better quality build, robust AF-S (crucial for a lot of shots that do not wait for you). Hence, if you think you won't be shooting fast moving subjects that much, 55-300 should be good enough for you. But if you yearn for faster focusing (better than 55-200) so that you don't loose out in capturing that all-important moment, I'd suggest that you consider 70-300 VR well.

In choosing 70-300 VR, you've not only gained faster focusing, but also the extra reach you wanted.

Contrary to what's been said, 70-300 VR can be used to capture birds (species that are not shy to humans). And no, the birds are not the normal common (you-see-everywhere) varieties either. The trick is to stay close to shorter trees that these birds often hang around...

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