Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x
I am wanting to get a teleconverter for my Nikkor 70-300mm 4-5.6 G . I do know that focusing will be slow with this lens , but I have read where some have had decent luck using a teleconverter in good light situations . I am wanting to know which of these teleconverters would be best and why (Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x) . I have done some reading on them but I am not sure what the difference is between the two .
Thanks for your help
#1. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 0benveniste Nikonian since 25th Nov 2002Sun 27-Mar-11 03:01 PM
The MC7 is Kenko's midline product; the Pro 300 is their higher end offering. The latter has a better reputation, but I haven't seen a side-by-side comparison of the current models.
But I'm afraid I have some bad news. First, with this combination I wouldn't expect slow autofocus, I'd expect no autofocus due to the effective f/11 maximum aperture.
Second, given the optical performance of the 70-300mm G at the long end and the lack of a tripod mount, I would not expect this combination to produce any better optical results than shooting without a teleconverter and cropping.
If you want to photograph a man spinning, give some thought to why he spins. Understanding for a photographer is as important as the equipment he uses. - Margaret Bourke-White
#2. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 0blw Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004Sun 27-Mar-11 06:43 PM
Some have had decent luck using a TC - but probably a 1.4x TC. You're asking about 2x, which are "just 0.6 more" but actually it's quite a bit different. As noted above, you lose another stop of light, so even wide open you're shooting at f/11. The G does not have VR, so even if you're past the focusing problem (good luck doing that manually, by the way), you are now shooting at pretty slow shutter speeds due to f/11 maximum aperture. For example, in standard bright daylight ("sunny 16" rule) you'll be shooting at 1/400th given ISO 200. That sounds pretty fast, but a 600mm lens on DX = 900mm effective and thus you'd want at least 1/1000th shutter speed to have a reasonable chance at hand-holding this lens. Even if you're willing to use a tripod or monopod, that doesn't work so well with this lens as there is no socket on the lens - so you'll have to use the socket on the camera, and the lens is now cantilevered out in space, hanging on the TC. It's therefore maximally subject to vibrations. And those vibrations will now be magnified 2x, just like your subject...
Finally, with this specific lens, it may look OK to you, but it's actually the worst performing lens Nikon makes. When you put a TC on it, you'll be magnifying all of those optical errors by 2x too.
To be blunt, unless you have hands of stone (almost literally) or you are significantly less demanding than most users, you are very unlikely to get satisfactory results with this lens and any 2x TC.
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
#3. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 2Mon 28-Mar-11 01:51 AM
Thank you for the input from both of you . I kind of figured this combination was not going to be a wise choice . I am trying to get some kind of focal length in order to do some wildlife photography . I seem to find myself in situations where the 300mm is not long enough to get me the shots I am wanting . On the other hand my budget doesn't seem to match my needs . I would love to have a 500mm or 600mm lens , but that is not in my budget at this time .
Thank you for your help
#6. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 3blw Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004Mon 28-Mar-11 07:11 AM
How badly do you want to do this wildlife photography? Badly enough to use a manual focus, manual exposure lens? If so, you can get a fairly high quality option: the Tamron 500/f8 Reflex. It's about $200. There are many disadvantages: it's a manual focus lens, it won't meter with your D50 (so you have to guess, then check the histogram), it is slow (f/8) and perhaps even worse it has no diaphram as it is a mirror lens (ie you can't stop it down, nor of course open it up). It is nearly impossible to hand-hold without producing camera shake. And its bokeh can range from fairly nice to aggressive to downright scary.
BUT it's 500mm, it's a quite sharp lens, it's $175 + $15 for an Adaptall mount for Nikon, it focuses to a reproduction ratio of 1:2.5 (!) and it is literally almost the same size as my Sigma 12-24/f4-5.6 FX lens (and it weighs less).
It is not as sharp as the Nikon or Sigma big guns, but then again you're getting it at a 95-98% discount. And it is significantly sharper than your 70-300G.
The disadvantages are legion, but for those on a severe budget it is a way to get a viable 500mm lens without filing for bankruptcy or divorce. I bought one years ago when in the same situation as you are in now and used it for a couple of years on a D100 - I got some nice shots with it, despite manual metering and imprecise manual focus. Years later, I now have both Sigma and Nikon big guns, but I keep this lens because it does some things that they don't (like be discrete and utterly convenient).
Note that there are a plethora of even less expensive mirror lenses - they are a disaster zone. There are also some Nikon alternatives that are somewhat more expensive and yield extremely similar results to the Tamron.
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
#7. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 6Wed 30-Mar-11 02:57 PM
Thanks for your input Brian .
I had actually forgotten about the Reflex Lenses . I had considered it a while back and had kind of put it on the back burner . I'm not sure how I feel about getting one . I will have to give all this some thought and see in which direction I'll go . I really enjoy hiking and doing the Wildlife photography and it is something I would like to pursue in a more serious fashion .
I guess I have some decisions ahead of me .
I do appreciate your help and the help of everyone in the group . This is definitely the place I come to for advise .
#10. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 2
Aww come on, the 70-300 G (non VR) is not as bad as the original 70-300 AF-D, which I still own. I actually took it to Hokkaido with me this winter, instead of my 80-200 one touch which just developed sticky aperture blades.
the 70-300 AF-D is flimsy, light and very soft @ 200+ but it's still not the worst. I have an even worse lens! No, I do... It's the AF 35-70 f/3.3(!) - 4.5. I bought it for $9 from Yahoo Auction... Although the postage cost another 6! Grrrr! LOL.
Even with a meagre 2x multiplication factor around the optically neutral range of 50mm, it still manages to be almost magnificently soft at all focal ranges and at most apertures! But it can still take photos which are ok at regular print sizes. As such, even a terrible Nikon is a usable lens!
It's only saving grace, apart from a single digit price tag is it's size, in that it's barely larger than a prime lens. So I can throw it on my screw-driven D70 (which sells for $60 - $120 second hand here in Japan) . Then I go out with my 6yo daughter, me with my set up and her with the D70 + AF 35-70 and take photos of "random" stuff in the park. Or I use on the beach and at beery parties and I have a practically disposable lens I can throw away at the end of surfing season/night.
#4. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 0
As far as I know, but I cannot confirm, the MC-7 is screwdriver AF only - and unsuitable for use with your AF -s lens.
My advice is to start by finding out if the MC-7 has at least 7 electronic contacts on the bayonet needed to support an AF-s lens.
Others have already confirmed a 2x converter is not going to focus with an f5.6 lens. The lower limit for AF is an f8 combination - and you are looking at f11
Manual focus is also very difficult with an f11 combination - any 2x is going to be unsatisfactory.
The Kenko Pro 300 1.4x should work in good light though AF may hunt in some conditions.
Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.
#5. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 4briantilley Nikonian since 26th Jan 2003Mon 28-Mar-11 06:37 AM
>As far as I know, but I cannot confirm, the MC-7 is
>screwdriver AF only - and unsuitable for use with your AF-s
Some confusion here - Steve's lens is the "screwdriver" AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6G, not the newer AF-S VR version.
#8. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 5TwoMetreBill Registered since 22nd Apr 2006Fri 08-Jul-11 04:44 PM
A little late for my reply but the Sigma mirror lenses do have a tripod mount. They are more expensive, usually the f/8 is around $400 with the f/4 at $600-800.
Also sometimes good deals come up on the Sigma 170-500 lens. The non-OS model is frequently under $400. The OS model is 150-500 and is rarely under $1000.
#12. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 11sabbey51 Nikonian since 10th Jan 2010Tue 11-Jun-13 07:17 AM
Another option is to put your 70-300 on a Nikon 1 V1 using the FT-1 adaptor. You get 10 mp and center spot auto focusing with an effective focal length of 189-810mm, but you keep your 4.0-5.6 aperture. The combination will cost about $550, and you get a nice small camera with a mid-range zoom as a bonus.
#9. "RE: Teleconverter - Kenko MC7 AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x" | In response to Reply # 0
>I am wanting to get a teleconverter for my Nikkor 70-300mm
>4-5.6 G . I do know that focusing will be slow with this lens
>, but I have read where some have had decent luck using a
>teleconverter in good light situations . I am wanting to know
>which of these teleconverters would be best and why (Kenko MC7
>AF 2x DG or Kenko Pro 300 AF 2x) . I have done some reading on
>them but I am not sure what the difference is between the two
>Thanks for your help
Late, but may be good information for someone other than the OP.
I have an old Kenko MC7 x 2. When on my D7000 I get NO autofocus with anything, AF-D 200mm f/2.8, AF-D 80-200 f/2.8 (at any length), AF-D 300mm f/4 regardless of lighting conditions. I have twiddled with the focus acquisition levels in the menu, but It appears that the D7000 pushes the lens past the focus point with its teleconverted, compressed field of depth the AF motor oscillates endlessly back and forth. When I use tripod mounted 2s remote timer and/or decent light, I get surprisingly clear images from these three lenses, noticeably better than cropping on all three of these lenses.
As an aside, the build quality of this TC is poor. The weight of the D7000 causes the digital connection to falter and read out f/32 or f--. So you will need a solid tripod mount that supports both your camera and the lens.