I'm looking at a 3rd party lens for my Nikon d5000. A friend of mine was shooting with a Canon and using a Tamron zoom telephoto lens (70mm - 300mm). The largest focal point I have w/ one of my lenses currently is 200mm.
I have found this one: http://www.amazon.com/Tamron-70-300mm-4-0-5-6-Digital-Cameras/dp/B000EXOXVA
which is $160 (normally $360).
I'm looking for something similar to the first party lens found here: http://www.amazon.com/Nikon-70-300mm-4-5-5-6G-Digital-Cameras/dp/B000HJPK2C
which is over $500 (normally over $660).
I need it to be able to auto focus (the Nikon d5000 body doesn't handle that, so the lens has to take care of that). Vibration Reduction is important too - I honestly can't tell if this lens has that.
I wouldn't mind paying a little more for a good lens (trying to keep it under $400), as long as it has VR, AF, and can go to at least 300mm.
Are there 3rd party lenses compatible with Nikon d5000 that can auto focus and also have vibration reduction?
Are these lenses quality lenses?