One of the most common questions regarding Nikon and 3rd Party lenses is "Will lens X work with teleconverter Y?"
To help answer such questions, the Nikonians Team has created THIS CHART. >>
General tele converter usage
Teleconverters (“converters” or “TC’s”) are a relatively inexpensive way of extending the focal length, and hence the range, of an existing lens. However, their usage comes at a price in performance terms. Typically, AF speed may be reduced, and any tendency of the lens to “hunt” may increase. Image quality (resolution and contrast) is likely to be degraded somewhat. Lastly, an inevitable result of using any converter is a lessening of light transmission, and hence a darker viewfinder:
- a 1.4x converter will lose 1 stop of light; an f/2.8 lens becomes an f/4 combination
- a 1.7x converter will lose 1.5 stops of light; an f/2.8 lens becomes an f/4.7 combination
- a 2x converter will lose 2 stops of light; an f/2.8 lens becomes an f/5.6 combination
- a 3x converter will lose 3 stops of light; an f/2.8 lens becomes an f/8 combination.
Converters are designed to be used on longer focal length lenses. Prime lenses under about 100mm, zooms shorter than about 70-200mm, and “superzooms” like an 18-200mm, tend to give poorer results with converters.
The Nikon MF converters have limitations as to which focal lengths they can be used on. The TC-14A, TC-200 and TC-201 are intended for lenses of 200mm and less; the TC-14B, TC-300 and TC-301 are intended for lenses of 300mm and more.
Not all lenses will physically fit all converters. If the converter has a protruding front element, and/or the lens has a non-recessed rear element, attempting to mount the converter could damage both it and the lens. The Nikon TC-300 and TC-301 are good examples. Nikonians cannot be held responsible for any damage caused by mounting any converter on any lens.
Converters transmit various signals between the lens and camera using electrical contacts. 10 contacts are currently required for full operation, including autofocus and VR/OS/VC functions where the lens has them, with Nikon AF cameras. Autofocus is transmitted using the electrical contacts for AF-S, AF-I, HSM and USD lenses, or through a mechanical clutch known colloquially as “screwdriver” for other AF lenses. Nikon’s TC-xxE, TC-xxE II and TC-xxE III converters, as well as newer Sigma EX DG TC’s, do not have the “screwdriver” clutch. Some older 3rd Party converters such as the Kenko Teleplus MC4 and MC7 lack the contacts for AF-S/AF-I/HSM/USD lenses. Stopping down of the lens diaphragm is achieved via a mechanical linkage (which often rattles!).
If a VR/OS/VC lens will autofocus with a particular converter and camera combination, then in general VR/OS/VC will also work. If a lens will meter with a particular camera, then in general metering will also work with a converter attached.
Nikon’s TC-xxE, -II and -III converters have a tab on the front mounting ring that prevents them being mounted on anything but the longer “pro” Nikkor AF-S and AF-I lenses. It is possible to remove the tab with a grinding tool, but Nikonians cannot be held responsible for any damage caused by doing so.
Tamron SP Pro converters are functionally the same as the equivalent Kenko Pro 300 converters; any differences are cosmetic only. The Nikon TC-xxE and TC-xxE II converters have only cosmetic differences, but TC-xxE III converters have a new optical formula.