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Just for fun, I looked around on one of my adventurings for some sort of object a bit of distance away, to try comparing the quality of the Nikkor 300mm f/4D AF-S and the Tamron 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 VC. Given the latter only goes as wide as f/6.3 at 300mm, the exposure was quite a lot longer at 1/400th, versus 1/1250th for the Nikkor - so there's technically the possibility of some motion blur involved, though the Tamron's internal stabilisation should've taken care of that. It's only a quick test, therefore, but it does nonetheless give a useful indication of their relative merits.

Tamron:


Nikkor:


These are, I should note, 100% crops - no rescaling involved, just extracting a particular portion of the image at original resolution. Not a subtle difference!

I was amused to later realise said construction was about fourteen miles away. =:D
 
 
 
 
 
 
Lens comparisons aside... what is that? It looks medieval! :)

Given Nikon's reputation, I'm not too surprised about the difference. The Nikkor probably cost a good deal more, and you get what you pay for with glass.
Apparently, it began just after the Norman Conquest. Looks like they did a pretty good job of the construction. =:)

Indeed - the Nikkor's double the price, and of course, a prime lens, whereas the Tamron's useful across a wide range, plus having a fairly decent stabilisation system. I do wish the Nikkor had a rear element, but I suppose that helps to keep it relatively affordable, at the cost of having to be on the quick side getting the rear lens cap on or off, to avoid possible dust or fungal contamination. For the price, though, it's an exceptional lens - professional quality, both in optics and mechanical construction. Anything better (longer or wider), and there's quite a hike in the prices.

(If I had the choice, I'm not entirely sure whether I'd go for the Nikkor 400mm f/2.8, or the 500mm f/4. It may be a while before I have to make that decision =:)