View Full Version : Nikkor-W 300m f5.6, any experienced users?

Matthew Stanton
3-Oct-2003, 07:20
Does anybody have experience with the 300mm f5.6 Nikkor-W for 8x10? I currently am using an old 300mm Linhof/ Schneider 5.6 symmar convertible with a compound shutter. The lens seems o.k . sharpness wise but it's controls are slow to operate for portraits and the lens perhaps lacks a little contrast overall. I have found the Nikkor in excellent condition at a good price second hand and am tempted. I assume the contrast will be significantly better, but what concerns me is the quality of the out of focus areas it produces. I find the Schneider produces a smooth even background blur, would the Nikkor have similar qualities? Perhaps all 300mm lenses for 8x10 have this quality. I would be keen to hear any opinions.

George Losse
3-Oct-2003, 08:19

I've used a Nikor 300 W since 1990 on my 8x10. I love the lens.

It has been sharp and I have not had any problem with contrast. I bought the lens new, and was torn over buying the 300 or the 360. As it turns out now, I sort-of wish I had bought the 360 as it appears to have a big enough image circle to cover 8x20 (which I now also shoot) but the 300 doesn't cover the 8x20. It has worked great for 8x10 images though. Lots of coverage for movements.

I can't really talk about a smooth even background blur, I don't normally shoot for that. I like to work with the lens at f45, even in the studio.

George Losse - www.georgelosse.com

Michael Kadillak
3-Oct-2003, 09:27
The Nikon 300W f5.6 was my first lens for 8x10 and I still have it. The few times I have utilized bokeh in a photograph with this lens were as normal as any other I have used. If it is to be a portrait lens used exclusively in the studio, it will serve its purpose quite well at a reasonable cost if you go used. Saying that, taking it in the field is another thing as it is quite heavy (2.75#)and takes 95mm filters. A real hunk of glass. I have a wide selection of Nikon lenses and for the money, I do not think you could find a better value and performance combination for most LF photographic applications. Cheers!