I'm now in the market for a 300mm f/2.8 and have found Tamron and Tokina lenses for about $1,000 and was wondering if anyone has used these or even the Sigmas. I would be willing to look at older Nikkors but I'm not willing to go above $1,500 at all. Don't bother suggesting anything over $2k - I know the new lenses are better, but it's not going to happen.
It looks like I'm going to get a reoccurring (annual) job shooting some high-school seniors during their football games for a friend who is a head coach and just moved back to the area. This will be a very low paid job (as he pays for it out of his own pocket.) I'm looking at it more as something that will be fun and in time pay for a 300mm lens I wouldn't bother getting. I really have almost no other use for a 300 f/2.8 but know that I will absolutely need the 2.8 for the stadium I will be shooting in. In the past, I have shot my 85mm f/1.8 at f/2 due to the light. My 70-200mm is not getting me enough reach and seen in the past, F/4 with the light will leaves me with too few usable shots.
DX (D300 or D400 when released)
Budget is really $1,200
Some images will be printed at 24x36. Most 8x10.
I do need AF.
Looking at Tamron SP 300mm and a Tokina 300mm f/2.8 AT-X.