Lens review

Nikon Nikkor AF-P DX 70-300 mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR

12 August 2018
Arkadiusz Olech

10. Autofocus

The new pulsing/stepping AF-P motor was launched by Nikon in order to ensure, among other things, a silent, quick focusing both during taking photos and shooting videos. Still there was a price to be paid for that novelty – the loss of compatibility with older camera models. Currently, when it comes to DX reflex cameras, the tested Nikkor is fully compatible (so you don’t lose any functionalities) with the following models: D7500, D5600, D5500, D5300, D3400, D3300 and D500. Mind you, in some cases firmware update might be required or even necessary.

The autofocus of the Nikkor AF-P DX 70–300 mm VR is indeed noiseless; running through the whole distance scale and finding the focus takes about 0.3 of a second, 0.5-0.6 of a second in the case of longer focal lengths, especially in poor lighting conditions. Overall these are very good results, excellent even if you take into account the price-point of the tested instrument.

The new motor, joined with a very efficient AF module from the D500, didn’t cause any problems when it comes to accuracy. While shooting photos indoor and outdoor we rarely witnessed any significant misses and their number never exceeded 1-2%. Once again the tested Nikkor should be praised here.

The tested lens seemed to have a slight back focus tendency but it was noticeable only when taking photos from a close range; it could be corrected with the microregulation unit and then the lens worked properly well throughout all focal lengths and working distances.

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Nikon D500, 135 mm, f/4.8
Nikon Nikkor AF-P DX 70-300 mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR - Autofocus
Nikon D500, 300 mm, f/6.3
Nikon Nikkor AF-P DX 70-300 mm f/4.5-6.3G ED VR - Autofocus