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Nikon D3100 - second hand 100 - 400 lenses (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
I will be in Kruger in South Africa this May. I would to change almost my gear... but unfortunately I am on budget because I will spend quite a lot for the trip
My setup right now is:

a) Nikon D3100 (quite obsoleted, I know)
b) Nikkor Zoom Lens 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 Auto Focus-S
c) Canon Powershot SX60HS

I would like to buy second hand lenses for the D3100 in particular 100-400. I think this would be a good compromise both for price reasons and encumbrance. Even though for birding 150-600 would be better

1) Can you suggest me good second hand 100-400 lenses around 300 or 400 2) Would it make sense to buy second hand 150-600 and resell them after the trip? Do you think it's easy to resell this kind of lenses or would it take long time and effort?
3) Should I consider Sigma 50 500 OS or similar? Is it very bulky and heavy to carry?

Thank you


Well-known member

I think it would be helpful if you described more fully what you are looking to accomplish for the trip. Is the focus to be on birding in particular? Are you planning on bringing the D3100 and the Canon? Although the Canon is a bit old it is a fine camera, offering reasonable image quality, a very long zoom and is relatively easy to transport and shoot.

If you can better describe your goals then hopefully others can offer you their advice.


Well-known member
Hello bflginidx, sorry for my late answer
We are 2 people travelling together. One will use the Canon Powershot the other one the D3100
The D3100 would be used for landscapes and simple astrophotography
Then for big animals like lions etc.
For birding it would be better to use long lenses like the 150-600
As a compromise, both in terms of price and encumbrance, I am considering 100-400 lenses


Well-known member
The price range of 300-400 euro will be difficult for a long lens. See towards the bottom for some older models that might work. In your budget, the older Sigma 150-500 might be the ticket. Here are the current models.

The Nikon Nikon 80-400 G AF-S VR is a great lens, if a little heavy in the hand and the wallet. On ebay.it, it looks to be around 1000 euro. There's an older 80-400 AF-D VR that is not as good (slower focus, not as sharp) and it might be too slow of focus for what you want.

The Tamron 100-400 is a newer lens (2017 I think). It's pretty good. But still around 600 - 800 euro.

The Sigma 150-600 C and Tamron 150-600 G2 are both great lenses (be sure it's the G2 version). I use the Tamron all the time for birding. They will be maybe 800 - 1200 euro.

If you are comfortable buying and selling used, I think any of the Nikon 80-400 VR, Tamron 100-400 or either of the 150-600s would work out great. Those are all current lenses, so you should not have too much trouble re-selling them.

There's also the Nikon 18-300mm VR f/3.5-6.3 DX AF-S G ED, which is a good all-around lens and not too heavy. There's an newer version and older version, both are good. The newer one is smaller and lighter. For your budget, if you could find either one it would be ok. 300mm (450mm equivalent) is on the low side, but would be passable for birding and safari.

The older Sigma 150-500 had pretty good optics, you might be able to get that used more in the 400-500 range. Maybe even the 300 range. The autofocus speed is not too fast, but might be OK enough, especially for the price. Here's Ken Rockwell's review.

Africa can be very dusty. I'd recommend getting a good anti-static (anti-dust) filter and a bunch of micro-fiber cloths and a squeeze air bulb. Try not to change lenses if you don't need to.

Many of these lenses get HEAVY. Have at least a monopod. I find the monopod, especially with a simple tilt head, very very helpful. Also, get the
BlackRapid Sport Breathe Camera Strap -- it is the best way to carry a heavy lens. Remember to always support the camera/lens by the lens, not the camera (i.e. always hold the lens, put the support on the lens, put the camera strap on the lens).

The more I think about it, the more the Sigma 150-500 sounds like the right answer. I'm not familiar with ebay.it and buying/selling in Europe, so I'll leave it to you to evaluate if that's really an option.



Well-known member
I missed part of your questions. Yes, the Sigma 15-500 is heavy at 63.2 oz./1,792g. It is not too bulky, as long lenses go. It will extend/retract based on the zoom range. Monopod and black rapids strap are needed.

It uses an 86mm filter, so that will also set you back a bit to get a decent anti-dust filter. Maybe you will get one in an auction with the lens.



Well-known member
About a year ago I upgraded from a Panasonic bridge camera to a Nikon D7200 with the Tamron 100-400mm. I often walk up to 4-5 hours on the shore and woods and wanted something light enough to hand hold. Whether bird or mammal I never know what I'm going to see and often need to aim, focus and shoot rather quickly. I'm happy with this combination. If the images don't turn out quite right it's my fault, not the camera/lens. I bought the lens new and it operated fine right out of the box. As I'm sure you know, you can Google search for reviews of any of the lenses that have been mentioned so far.


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Homo sibiricus

Well-known member
Hi! I am strongly not recommended D3100, try to buy D3200 at least. Nikkor 100-400 has not any motor. And Nikon D3xxx, 5xxx haven't too. You will loss AF function with this lens. Sigma 150-500 is a good choice for example.


Well-known member
Thank you all for your suggestions
I found this 150-500 sigma Af for 300 eur Nikon type
I think ll call the guy and ask to see it
As for buying and reselling I have no problems with that
The point is I have no clear feedback from on long it would take in Italy to buy and resell
Perhaps even loosing little money could be more ok
I mean if I buy for 500 and resell for 450 that could stil make sense if I buy equipment I would not use much after
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Well-known member
I am going to buy the lenses soon and I am considering

Sigma 150-500 f/5.6-6.3 Nikon F type
Nikon af-s 70-300 VR 4.5-5.6 G

Sigma or Tamron 100-400 were also one of the models you suggested but I don't find them used only new for about 500 or 600 euros, already over budget

For Kruger Sigma would make more sense, especially for birding. For the weight and the reusability in other trips
Nikon 70-300 would make more sense. Provided my photography skills are also not so high and Nikon D3100 is quite obsoleted and might require some newer and more "automatic" lenses


Well-known member
You should be very happy with the Sigma 150-600C. It's about the same as the Tammy 150-600 G2.

You should youtube or search for how to fine-tune the autofocus. It could make a noticable difference.

The black rapids strap (attached to the lens) makes carrying it around pretty easy.


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