Nikkor AF-S 300mm f/4E PF 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 open the sample image in full resolution.

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed125
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/800s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed200
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/40s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed200
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/6.3
Exposure1/500s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed100
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/4.5
Exposure1/640s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed100
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/640s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed125
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/1000s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed125
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/8.0
Exposure1/400s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed200
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/8.0
Exposure1/400s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed200
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/6.3
Exposure1/125s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed200
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/4.0
Exposure1/1600s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed125
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/800s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed100
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/4.0
Exposure1/800s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed100
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/7.1
Exposure1/250s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed100
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/640s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed125
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/4.0
Exposure1/2000s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed200
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/1600s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed125
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/8.0
Exposure1/500s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed125
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/8.0
Exposure1/640s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed200
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/7.1
Exposure1/100s

MakeNIKON CORPORATION
ModelNIKON D3X
ISO Speed100
Focal Length300.0mm
Aperture:f/5.6
Exposure1/320s

Verdict

The Nikkor AF-S 300/4 PF VR is a lovely little lens that shows very solid performance and is a lot of fun to use in the field, last but not least because it is so portable for a long tele prime.

Sharpness is excellent at the image center and very good at the borders and corners. Vignetting is moderate wide open and not an issue stopped down, distortion and bokeh fringing are well controlled, CAs a little on the high side, though. Bokeh is generally smooth and pleasant.

Autofocus is very fast and near silent, and one feature not explicitely mentioned so far is the short minimum focus distance, which allows near-macro close-ups.

Combined with the high build quality, this would usually deserve our "Highly recommended" rating.

Unfortunately, there are issues. The VR efficiency is one, but it wouldn't influence our rating much, it's however definitely something potential buyers should be aware of, depending on which camera they plan to use the lens with.

Flare and halos are a different story, though. Depending on the direction of light or the intensity of highlights in the frame, the lens can show either or both to a degree that completely ruins a shot.

If you are aware of these issues and able to work around them, or able to accept that the lens is not suitable for some light scenarios, it's still a very capable tool.

Optical Quality:    
★★★★★
Mechanical Quality:
★★★★★
Price/Performance:
★★★★★

Click here for an explanation of our star ratings